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This page, Chapter 08: Reunions, is coming of age. The current canon and/or the writer's writing has improved since then, making this page relatively obsolete. Please take into account possible plans for a complete overhaul to this page for future use.

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Matt and Tokatsu, after their briefing with HJ were now on their way back to the monorail. Matt seemed to pay no mind to the bustling town, and Tokatsu seemed busy massaging his hands.

Tokatsu: So you’re father was the chief huh. I never thought he’d be like that.

Matt: Eh, give or take. He’s got a good history with fighting, law enforcement is a minor step down for him. As the guy who fought Relius Clover it’s kinda funny seeing him be the chief of precinct.

Tokatsu: The mad puppeteer, huh? I heard about him in the history books. What was he like?

Matt: ...Long story short, very cold.

Tokatsu: And your father, what made him decide to fight him?

Matt: Personal reasons, actually. My father’s family was taken out by pure coincidence, so when my father found him, he essentially waged his personal war. Of course he had help from mom, his friends, Asuva, and the rest.

Tokatsu: Asuva?

Matt: nevermind that.

Tokatsu: Right, my bad. Mind if I learn more about your friends? I know a bit more of your family now.

Matt: Well for one I actually know a lot of my friends from Kazamotsu, some human, and some beastkin. As well as my mentor, but you know that story.

Tokatsu: All right, keep going.

Matt: Orie likely never told you, but I actually like this girl who’s actually my mentor’s sister. She’s very nice, and she can hold her own in a battle.

Tokatsu: Heh, she sounds wonderful. What’s her name?

Matt: Her name? I honestly don’t like sharing it often, but her name’s Aiko… She’s an arctic fox beastkin, like you are.

Tokatsu: correct.

Tokatsu and Matt soon stopped, hearing footsteps from far back.

???: How interesting to be talking about my sister-in-law.

Matt: …!

Tokatsu quickly turns around, striking a battle stance.

Tokatsu: Who are you…?!

Matt: Tokatsu, wait! That’s likely my mentor!

Matt quickly turns around too, quickly trying to stop Tokatsu from causing an unneeded battle, Ame steps closer as he reveals himself.

Ame: Well now, good to see you again Matt.

Matt: ...Yeah, you too, Ame. I didn’t think dad would send you.

Tokatsu soon returned to his normal stance, rolling his neck, he soon extends a hand to Ame

Tokatsu: So you’re his mentor? I’m Tokatsu, a pleasure to meet you.

Ame calmly shakes his hand.

Ame: The pleasure is mine. We are here to assist.

Another beastkin pops her head out from behind him.

???: I am too!

Matt: Heh, long time no see!

Tokatsu, after the handshake takes note of the other beastkin.

Tokatsu: I assume you’re Aiko then?

Aiko: I am! Its a pleasure to meet you. (Bowing respectfully) My name is Aiko Itou.

Tokatsu: Heh, mine’s Tokatsu. It’s nice to meet a fellow fox beastkin.

Matt: I hope you’ve both been well the past two years. Considering I was gone and all.

Ame: Consider it in the past. We have had our focuses on protecting Aiko from dealing with hunters who would skin her for her rare pelt. While Matt is aware, I shall explain for Tokatsu. Aiko is rare because she was a snow fox born to regular foxes. The odds of that happening are incredibly rare.

Tokatsu: I see… That’s just detestable.. Why kill a beastkin for their fur?! It’s about as similar as hunting a rare breed of doe and hanging it on the wall!

Matt only nodded as Tokatsu soon concluded

Tokatsu: Whoever thinks they can take her precious fur should be burned at the stake… *crosses arms* I do hope that this sort of thing ends soon. You’re safe in Mizuha, Aiko. Humans and beastkin get along quite well in this city.

Aiko: I’m not worried. People of that nature are thinning out, and I always have Ame as my bodyguard.

Tokatsu: … Heh, I guess you’re quite strong then Ame.

Ame: I am known far and wide as the Strong-Armed Wolf. Or the Lone Wolf, as some have called me. I am not afraid of a challenge.

Tokatsu: heh, perhaps a spar then in the near future?

Matt: ….

Ame: If you wish to test your strength, I will not hesitate to indulge you. Though, a warning, I do not pull punches.

Matt: ...Ame, all I will say beforehand is Tokatsu wields a rare kind of ars magus in form of his gloves. Just don’t want you getting frozen.

Ame: You undermine my training if you think I haven’t trained in the harshest of conditions.

Matt: ….Okay you got a point. But again, he’s still strong in his own right. This goes for you too, Tokatsu. Ame’s not a pushover, he’s quite strong. My dad made a good choice when he and mom decided he was to be the mentor to my sister and me.

Aiko: Still we’re all friends here, we’re trying to help each other not fight each other. And I can appreciate being able to use ice and snow. (Smiles)

Matt: Yeah.

Tokatsu smiled as he sighed. It seemed to him Aiko was like a little cub to watch over.

Tokatsu: Well if anything, I’m sure Orie and the others would like to meet you.

Matt: Yeah, we can catch up along the way. I’ll get you up to speed on what we know so far.

Tokatsu soon starts walking, pocketing his hands in his coat. Matt rolls his neck as he looks to Aiko.

Matt: You’ve gotten taller, Aiko.

Aiko: I guess so. My sister said I’m becoming a lot like her. But my tail has gotten harder to take care of....

Matt: Why so? Grooming reasons?

Aiko: I guess you could say its a lot like a bed head instead of just staying exactly the way it used to be.

Matt: Heh, well I guess your sister can help you on that. Come on, I’ll lead the way to Orie’s. Though with the way things are going, I bet I’ll be meeting a lot of familiar faces. Besides, I actually got the blueprints to the whole project so you’ll see those tonight.

Aiko: Well my sister has had to help me with a lot of things recently, but we don’t need to get into that (nervously laughs) But I’m hopeful I can be useful.

Matt: I think you’ll do just fine Aiko. I’m sure of it, and I bet Ame will too. I bet he’d like getting his hands on Erreku and Hono at some point along the line.

Ame: (Thinking) To be a teenager turning into an adult, I’m sure she has a lot on her mind. For more than one reason.

Aiko: Ame will be fine, I’m sure.

Matt: all right then.

Soon the three reached Orie’s residence, Ventus was the first to greet them at the door.

Ventus: Oh, so you came late. I guess you needed time to catch up?

Matt: You could say that, yes.. Tokatsu went ahead of us anyway. Anywho, Aiko, Ame. He’s Ventus.

Ventus: It’s nice to meet you both. Never met a wolf beastkin before.

Ventus holds his hand out to Ame, his sloth ears twitching slightly.

Ame: (Shaking his hand) A pleasure.

Aiko: (Bows Respectfully) I’m Aiko Itou. Nice to meet you.

Ventus: Likewise. Come on in. Flamme and Elettrico are busy with Orie preparing dinner so it’s just me and Tokatsu out here.

Tokatsu looked up from his book and nodded. Matt soon made his way in, sitting down on one of the sofas.

Matt: I managed to get them up to speed on what’s happening here, as well as who our enemy is.

Ame: Any and all information is appreciated.

Ventus: Well for one Matt here has the blueprints, which he likely mentioned.

Matt had already started opening up the folded blueprints, soon he set them down on the table. Detailing lists of building materials, as well as a process of soul collecting, probably to create the various nox nyctores.

Ventus: And we also learned that Erreku and Hono, the two big heads of this operation managed to run it by, and subsequently get it approved by the MOR, So we got the government to fight against.

Ame: No surprise there. The MOR is much like the NOL in its own way.

Ventus: Heh, I agree with you there.

Matt: We had run-in with the MOR in the past Ventus. It’s a… ‘fun’ story.

Tokatsu: heh, not an easy encounter?

Aiko: Wouldn’t say that much…

Matt: let’s move on.

Tokatsu: All right.

Matt: Well only I can sort of account for this story, so in a generalization. I, along the way of trying to find one of my allies, managed to stumble on an abandoned facility.

Ventus: MOR Facility?

Matt: Yeah, it’s where I found my elemental azure.

Tokatsu and Ventus’ eyes widened as they quickly responded

Tokatsu/Ventus: You have an azure?!

Ame: (Confused) You didn’t tell them?

Matt: They never asked how I could amplify Shokubai’s abilities. Besides when they asked dad, he tried to dance around it too.

Tokatsu: So let me get this straight. You, found an azure, in the abandoned facility. UNTOUCHED.

Matt: Yeah.

Tokatsu: That could explain your proficiency. I’ve never seen a normal human be able to use the elements so efficiently.

Matt: I’m aware… But that’s originally why I was out traveling these past years. But seeing how soon it might come to an end, since after this I might as well go back home. But I think if we can finish this I may master it, despite it’s neutral and weak state.

Ventus: Huh, well if it can control elements, have ya tried wind?

Matt: Not in my life, Ventus.

Aiko: (Chiming in) Hold on, Matt. You’re forgetting someone. Because we’ve seen the elements used by humans too. Remember Miwa?

Matt: Yeah, I remember. And when ya bring it up, don’t forget my dad, and his brother too. I kinda got the undertaking from them.

Ventus: Learn something new everyday, I guess.

Tokatsu: Miwa? You mean the Miwa Suzuki who is protesting for beastkin rights in Kazamotsu?

Aiko: She’s also very good with kids.

Ame: (Nodding) She would entertain Aiko on occasion with tricks using her wind. But yes, she has become a champion for beastkin rights.

Tokatsu: Heh, to meet people who know her is quite great. I would love meeting her someday.

Matt: Yeah. I’ll be sure to try and ask about that when all is said and done.

Ventus: Well I guess I could learn a trick or two from her.

Aiko: She’s very nice, she’ll get along with most everyone.

Tokatsu: Heh.

Soon Orie had entered the room.

Orie: Oh, you’re back!

Matt: Sorry for not letting you know sooner.

Orie: I guess you two are his friends?

Ame: I’m his mentor, Ame.

Aiko: (Bows respectfully) I’m Aiko Itou, its a pleasure to meet you.

Orie: Likewise to you both. (thinking) ….Okay note to self, keep mouth shut.

Matt: I assume Flamme and Elettrico are busy with dinner?

Orie: Yes, soup shall be finished soon. It’s the typical vegetable soup.

Tokatsu: Thank you, Orie.

Ventus: Much appreciated!

Matt: Yeah, I honestly think some soup could help.

Aiko turns up her nose.

Ame: Aiko.

Aiko: Huh?

Ame stares at her for a brief moment.

Aiko: I know. I won’t be rude.

Orie: Not a vegetable person, Aiko?

Ame: She has trouble with ‘hot’ food.

Orie: Ah, I’ll be sure to leave a bowl aside to let it cool for you. I should’ve known sooner!

Aiko: Please don’t feel its your fault. My issue arises because of my power over snow and ice. My body simply can’t take hot food.

Orie: I see, thank you for informing me Aiko.

Matt: (to himself) After dinner I’ll address to them what dad briefed us on after fighting Erreku and Hono. As well as Ventus and Flamme’s findings during my battle.

Tokatsu: Well anywho, for the time being. Make yourselves at home, Orie has guest rooms in the back. Ventus and I are with Matt if you ever need us during the night. Matt’s a heavy sleeper.

Matt: … *fidgeting nervously* Am not…

Ame: I will sleep by Aiko’s side.

Aiko: Ame is kind of assigned to be my bodyguard at the moment, so he’s going to be picky about that much.

Matt: guest rooms aren’t assigned, so no need to worry. Our room is second to last door on the right. I’m on the top bunk between me and Ventus, Tokatsu has his own bed.

Ame: Especially during when Aiko is getting her sleep, be prepared to deal with a very angry wolf if you try to peek in on her.

Matt: … *thinking* The only one stupid enough to do that would be ME. And even THEN I’m not THAT stupid!

Matt had a nervous look as Tokatsu gave a teasing smirk.

Ame: That goes for you specifically Matt.

Aiko blushes.

Matt: ...Ame you DO realize, I’m not that stupid to go against you….twice.

Tokatsu: it’s happened before?

Matt: ...Moving on!

Ventus: Yeah, let’s get to a lighter subject before Tokatsu has blackmail material.

Aiko: How about this? (Aiko makes a snowball appear between the fingers of her right hand.)

Matt: ...Snowball fight?

Ame: Aiko has been trying to become more masterful of her own powers. They’ve been...troublesome as of late.

Aiko frowns.

Matt: Well, if she needs help. I’m happy to volunteer. Besides, thanks to Tokatsu and Ventus I’ve been employing a new fighting style with my electricity.

Ame: The only people in this room who would likely be able to handle Aiko’s powers would be myself and possibly Tokatsu. My reason for that is because her power can be unstable and could cause a flash freeze.

Aiko: (Embarrassed) Matt can help! Of course he can Ame.

Ame: (Sighs) Of course, Aiko.

Matt: Thanks, Aiko. But if I’m not up for it, Tokatsu will take help.

Tokatsu: Heh, thank you for the privilege.

Aiko nervously fiddles with her skirt.

Ame: (Sighs) Are you okay, Aiko?

Aiko: (Surprised) Huh?

Ame: You’re fiddling with your skirt. That’s usually an indicator you’re cold.

Aiko: (Embarrassed) I’m just fine!

Ame: May I trouble you for a blanket?

Orie: sure, give me a moment.

Ame: (Sighs, thinking) Her teenage maturity seemingly has a high price because of her powers.

After a bit of time, Orie returns with a neatly folded fleece blanket, handing it to Aiko.

Orie: Here you go, I hope it’ll be warm enough

Matt: *thinking* What’s wrong with Aiko? I hope something isn’t troubling her.

Aiko puts on the fleece.

Ame: Better?

Aiko: Better.

Orie: I’m glad.

Matt: Aiko if you need rest, then get some rest. Ame you can trust me well enough to keep these two quiet.

Tokatsu: What exactly would we be doing that would be noisy?

Ventus: Well for one you’ve been stealing Matt’s tablet whenever his sister calls him up. As for me you already know that, I AM a sloth. I’m a loud snorer.

Matt: it’s more Tokatsu than Ventus.

Aiko: I’m fine Matt. I’m not tired.

Ame: (Looking at Matt) I encourage you to be careful with your word choice.

Matt: ...Yes sir.

Matt nodded quickly, he seemed quite fearful despite his tone.

Ame: What Aiko is dealing with she wants to keep private. You would be wise to respect that wish.

Matt: Yes sir. *quickly looks to Tokatsu* that goes for you too Tokatsu.

Tokatsu: Why me? You know her better than I do.

Matt: ...I’m gonna go get my soup now.

Matt quickly stands up, leaving the room to go to the kitchen. Orie deciding to follow him.

Aiko: (Whispering to Ame) You don’t need to be so mean to him.

Ame: (Whispering to Aiko) I am simply making sure he understands.

Aiko sighs. In the kitchen Matt sat down, Orie coming back to finish cooking the soup.

Matt: Hey Orie, is it almost done?

Orie: Just about, Flamme, Elettrico, feel free to socialize with the others.

Elettrico: More people! Yeah!!

Flamme smiles as she and Elettrico exit the kitchen.

Orie: I think something's troubling you. Is it that girl?

Matt: Aiko? No! She's not troubling me at all! If anything I'm happy she's here... But I hope what's going on with her can be resolved. If I knew what it was I wanna help her no matter what, despite what Ame says.

Orie: I love the determination. I'm sure you will help her every step of the way.

Matt: Thanks Orie. Set a bowl aside for Aiko.

Orie: As promised.

Soon Elettrico and Flamme enter the living room quarters

Flamme: Oh, visitors?

Elettrico: Nice to meet ya! I’m Elettrico, and she’s Flamme!

Ame: My name is Ame. It is a pleasure to meet you.

Aiko: (Bows respectfully) My name is Aiko Itou. Its a pleasure to meet you.

Flamme: Heh, you both seem to be his friend’s that HJ mentioned.

Elettrico: I never met a wolf beastkin before!

Tokatsu: *to Ame* Fair warning...Elettrico can get a bit….

Elettrico: So how did you meet Matt??

Tokatsu: ...Invasive.

Ame: I was charged to be his mentor by his mother and father.

Aiko: I met him through Ame.

Elettrico: I see, isn’t he a great guy or what? We met him through Flamme and Orie. I think he’s quite great!

Ventus, over the course of Elettrico’s ramblings, slowly pulls out his earplugs and puts them on, soon feigning sleep to avoid taking part in her conversation.

Ame: He still has plenty to learn.

Aiko: I think he’s a great guy. (Blushes)

Elettrico: You should’ve seen him when Tokatsu first met him, he was quite cold to him, if ya know what I mean.

Tokatsu: … (to himself) Just ignore it, Tokatsu… They’ll probably let it go.

Elettrico: I think he’s in love with that girl that’s always calling him.

Tokatsu quickly facepalmed, responding quickly,

Tokatsu: That’s his sister, Elettrico!

Ame: I can assure you they’re only siblings.

Tokatsu sighs as Elettrico tilts her head

Elettrico: They’re related… Oh, that makes sense!

Tokatsu: Now don’t make the insinuation again… I think he’d be quite...disappointed if he hears that.

Aiko: (Sighs happily) I’m glad he isn’t into that sort of thing.

Ame: Hmph.

Matt soon re-entered the room, holding a steaming bowl of soup for himself. Looking at Elettrico, he quickly speaks.

Matt: For the record… That was because Neikan was being a freakin’ troll. I’d rather die than be into that kind of thing.

Matt soon sits down near Tokatsu and Ventus.

Tokatsu: See, Elettrico?

Elettrico: Fine, fine I’m sorry… Though it’s still not denying the fact you and Flamme got a thing going.

Flamme: ..! Dammit, Elettrico!

Tokatsu: Now’s not the time!

Matt: … *returns to his soup*

Ame: May I ask that you prevent yourself from spreading unabashed rumors?

Tokatsu: ...That’s what we keep telling her. She never listens, she’s quite energetic like that.

Matt: I guess dad was right when he said she was like Tao. She’d never keep her mouth shut and make insinuations at times. *returning to his soup once again*

Ame: I’d like to think that love will work itself out.

Flamme: ...Agreed.

Tokatsu: Indeed, Ame.

Matt only nodded, as he kept with his bowl of soup.

Aiko: Me too.

Matt: Well, anyways. Mind if I ask what else has kept you busy the past two years Ame? I’m sure a lot has happened. Not to be invasive, but you know my story.

Ame: (Takes a moment) I’ve been taking these two years, and have been trying to train Aiko. Since she is my sister-in-law, and we are tasked with her upbringing, I have tasked myself with her well-being.

Aiko: Ame has been trying to teach me how to control my powers because its been a challenge for me.

Matt: I see. My only guess is that it gets harder to control as you grow older?

Ame looks at Aiko. She nods.

Ame: (Clears his throat) Aiko has given me her permission to say so. Her issue with her power is tied to (clears his throat again) her maturity.

Matt: ….Oh. *to himself* no wonder she wanted it private. *returns to his soup*

Tokatsu: Huh. *to himself* So it’s similar to a normal human’s puberty segment of teenage life…

Ame nods quietly.

Matt: ...Sorry for my assumption, sir.

Aiko: Don’t worry about it, Matt.

Matt: *nods* Right. *thinking* Though with the imminent fear I’m gonna get punched through the kitchen, I feel like I’ll be apologizing for a lot of crap.

Ame: Because of this, its caused our cleaning bills to skyrocket.

Aiko: Its not like I’m trying to!

Ame: She unintentionally will freeze her bedroom without intending to.

Matt was unsure how to respond, only nodding as he continued paying attention.

Aiko: (Embarrassed) It can be very difficult for me at times especially while sleeping or when my power can be out of control. Its why Ame sticks close in order to get it under control.

Matt: I...understand that. *thinking* though why it has to do with him wanting me to stay away during the night is beyond me. I’m not sacrificing my life for that.

Tokatsu’s eyes were slightly widened, but he kept composure. Elettrico however was clinging to a somewhat agitated Flamme.

Flamme: ...continue Ame, if you wish.

Ame: There are times where her power can just manifest without her wanting to. She has subtle tells. I have versed myself in her tells so I can proactively takes step to prevent problems from occurring.

Aiko: Anything from freezing myself to an entire home.

Matt: I see.

Tokatsu: Thank you for informing us. It’ll be essential if it happens in the future.

Elettrico: I don’t wanna become a giant ice cube!

Flamme: Well that's why we were told all this, to avoid that from happening. Now please, let go…!

Ame: Its why I asked for a blanket earlier. Because warming her up can help. Though it can’t be all at once, or it’ll become...troublesome…

Matt: … *thinking* It can get worse?!

Orie soon entered the room, setting down Aiko’s soup, which was cooled down to a decent temperature. Matt soon set his bowl down to get the bowls for the others in the room.

Flamme: ...No need to elaborate if you wish not to.

Ame: That’s the issue, it can be completely random at times. Which is why we struggle to get her powers under control. Unless you’d prefer to be sent back to the ice age.

Aiko: (Blushing, Embarrassed) I’m trying, after all.

Flamme: ...I’d, rather not have Elettrico clinging to me in the cold.

Tokatsu: Even if I can survive the cold the world would be a desolate wasteland, or the very least from Mizuha to Kagutsuchi.

Ame: Its why we take each step.

Orie: A good thought to have, Ame.

Flamme: Well after we finish dinner, I say we spend a bit of time having you both get to know the rest of us. You’ve met Tokatsu already.

Orie: Yeah, so you are well acquainted with him.

Aiko: (Happy about the subject change) I’d love to.

Ame nods quietly.

Matt soon entered, setting down the bowls of soup for the others, before returning to his bowl of soup.

Tokatsu: All I can really say about myself at this point is, to be honest Ame… I think you’ve done a good job with teaching Matt so far. If you wish to continue training him I say we do it together.

Matt: …!

Ame: That will not be necessary.

Aiko: Matt is strong enough to stand on his own two feet. Any training he has to do, or he feels he needs will have to be asked for.

Matt: … *To himself* I...honestly don’t know how to respond to that.

Tokatsu: I see. Sorry for that coming from nowhere.

Flamme: Anywho, I’m sure we haven’t explained our breeds to you. I’m sure Ventus has mentioned himself as a sloth beastkin before. Elettrico’s a cheetah, and I’m a red panda. We look similar to foxes, don’t we?

Aiko: Just a little bit. Though its cool to meet all sorts of different breeds.

Flamme: agreed.

Orie: and I’m a rabbit beastkin, but I met a few wolf beastkin in my branch of the police force. They tend to be quite tough despite their nice personalities. Pretty fitting of their appearance.

Ame: Well, it seems to be the case for wolves and foxes. People portray you as strong (motioning towards him) or they portray you as sexy (motioning towards Aiko). That’s simply the image that gets split for our races.

Matt only nods, still eating his soup

Orie: You could say the latter idea for cat beastkin too. And, in very VERY rare cases...myself. I’m a rabbit beastkin. And sometimes some of the human members of the force like to tease me in that kind of way. I always did have someone watching my back, be it a beastkin, or a human who respected me for who I was. And on some occasions the chief himself.

Ame: It can be tough, I’m sure people have teased you about not ‘being sexy’ or not looking what they were imagining.

Orie: Well that was from other girls in the force really. But you raise a good point.

Tokatsu: It’s funny because with me and Ventus, some humans see me as a frigid and cunning loner, and Ventus to be a lazy slacker.

Aiko: (Sighing) It can be tough breaking those sorts of things.

Tokatsu: Tougher than you know.

Matt: To be honest all I can really say is, between all the cities I passed through on my trip here… Mizuha seems to be the only one with minimum hostility between humans and beastkin. Considering the teasing Orie gets.

Orie nods in response.

Orie: That’s right. Mizuha was originally an all beastkin city to lay low from the humans. But when a human child came along, with no family to go to, they decided to take him in and raise him. After that it seemed more people began to accept Mizuha and came here to make peaceful terms, and eventually I learned of this and thought ‘I might as well stay in Mizuha… It’s better than Okoto with what’s happening’. And that’s how I came here, I was in the local police force by the time I heard that things were finally settled with Yuuki Terumi. And soon after my life was as it is now. Just being a normal by-the-book cop. But now I feel like I’m more than that.

Matt: ...That’s, actually a wonderful story Orie. Seeing true bonds transcend prejudice.

Matt seemed to be holding back tears, Tokatsu decided to pat him on the back, his expression was dry though, not expecting the boy to cry at the story.

Ame: Indeed, we have worked hard to make the best out of the worst situations.

Orie: Yes. I hope soon we can make this message known to the other cities. I will fight for my cause if people try to stop me by force, be it humans or our fellow beastkin.

Aiko: (Happily) But its why Miwa has worked so hard. She’s fought for equal rights for everyone. Its why beastkin and humans have rallied behind her.

Orie: I see. Then let her know of my story. She’ll find it heartwarming.

Tokatsu: Indeed, Orie. *looks to Matt* You already pierced this boy’s heart for his support.

Matt: It was well spoken!

Aiko: Its okay to cry.

Tokatsu: Just cry on Ame, not me.

Matt: ...He’d kill me.

Aiko quietly laughs.

Tokatsu: … You owe me for this, boy.

Matt soon embraced Tokatsu, crying on his shoulder. He gives a disdainful look at Ame

Tokatsu: *quietly* You’re welcome

Ame: Hmph. Matt makes his own decisions.

Tokatsu: Fair enough.

Orie: Well I’m sure everyone’s tired by now. It’s quite late.

Ventus soon woke up, sighing he took out his earplugs.

Orie: Oh, Ventus you’re awake.

Ventus: Only for a bit. Mostly because I need something to eat.

Flamme: Soup’s in front of you.

Ventus: Thanks.

Ventus soon grabs the bowl of soup, eating it as Elettrico soon started walking off.

Elettrico: I’m gonna get my cat nap in. I’ll need it for tomorrow if we’re investigating some more.

Aiko: I think we all need sleep.

Matt: Yeah. We can continue in the morning.

Matt soon started walking off, wiping his eyes with his coat sleeve Tokatsu soon followed suit. His tail swaying.

Orie: There’s extra pillows and blankets for you both, I’ll get them for you.

Ame: Its appreciated.

Orie bowed and she leaves. Flamme leaned against the wall as she stayed back with Ventus.

Flamme: I guess it must’ve been a tiring process with the kid?

Ame: Every child is different.

It was all Ame would say. Flamme only nodded as she responded.

Flamme: ...Yeah. I can agree with that. Have a good rest, the both of you…

Aiko: You too (smiles)

Flamme: Heh, I’ll be sure to. If either of you need anything, we’re right next door. And the guys are across from us.

Aiko: Okay.

Ventus: Yeah, though if you need any of the guys go for Tokatsu… Me and Matt are heavy sleepers. Though I also wear earplugs, so you couldn’t wake me up easily anyways.

Flamme: I’ll be sure to be there ASAP if anyone tries to get in unauthorized. Though I can trust Matt not to do that. I heard about his fear of wolves. Quite entertaining how his sister methodized it.

Ame: I will refer to you for when she needs a female’s touch.

Flamme: Understood, Ame. Better me than Elettrico or Orie. The former being, herself. The latter since she needs all the rest she can get. Since she IS a cop after all. To be honest, Ame I wouldn’t be surprised if you yourself were a cop.

Ame: I am many things.

Ventus: Heh, I guess you fit a lot of positions. I look forward to working with you. I’m sure my abilities will blow you away… Literally speaking.

Flamme: That wasn’t even a pun. *facepalm* Specializing in wind doesn’t let you make puns like that without even TRYING.

Ame: If you are to surpass the conductor of the winds, then you must prevent yourself from being a blowhard. I encourage you to keep training, so that the conductor of the winds will give her baton to you.

Ventus: Noted. I’m surprised you know that proverb. I read it quite a bit but I never thought anyone else had.

Ame: It is a proverb, but I spoke in more literal terms. Miwa Suzuki is known as the conductor of the winds. She would speak and listen to them as if they were a normal being. But at the twist of her baton, she could summon strong and powerful winds that could cause a tornado and hurricane to retreat in fear. (Stares at Ventus) When you treat the winds like they are your brother as opposed to your weapon, maybe she will pass that baton to you.

With that, Ame goes to take up his position.

Ventus: ...Wow.

Flamme: Quite the way with words…

Ventus: Yeah. Though with Matt it’s a similar but different case.

Flamme: How so?

Ventus: Matt has fire, electricity, and ice. Think on that. His father was the same, and so are you, Elettrico, and Tokatsu.

Flamme: I’m listening.

Ventus: Before today you saw me essentially hand him my combat style for his own use. With his swiftness and electricity he had me beat. If he can learn more advanced techniques from the four of us. As well as some handgun tactics from Orie. I think it may help.

Aiko: I think he can learn from everyone. He just needs the time.

Flamme: Good thinking Aiko. You know Matt as well as Ame does. If not, then more than him.

Aiko: We haven’t gotten to see much of each other, but I like to think I know him pretty well.

Flamme: heh, well you can give us details tomorrow. You need rest, Aiko. And I’m sure among the guys, none of them will try to sneak in. Especially Matt considering he hasn’t tried it before, and I doubt he’ll try it now. Considering he fears the wolves gobbling up naughty perverted boys.

Flamme laughs to herself at her own joke.

Aiko: (Confused) Naughty? Perverted? He isn’t either of those things. He’s just afraid of Ame.

Ventus: It’s a joke his sister would tell him.

Aiko: His sister does tease him more lately, because he was protective of her when they were younger.

Flamme: I never knew he was like that…

Ventus: I guess he was a dedicated little brother.

Aiko: Neikan would tease him about it because of it. Saying that he was in love with his sister. But that was Neikan simply trying to get under his skin. Honestly, I think he’s a great guy.

Flamme: Yeah, he mentioned that earlier. I honestly think he’s great too. If I didn’t have Tokatsu to look after, I’d be watching out for Matt.

Aiko: Leave him to me.

Ventus/Flamme: …? Why?

Aiko: (Confused) I can watch out for him? Isn’t that what you meant?

Flamme: Y-Yes, yeah you can do that. *to herself* I was afraid she caught on to what I actually meant…!

Ventus: I’m gonna get going… I’m sure Tokatsu is gonna drag me off to bed if I don’t go soon

Ventus quickly leaves.

Aiko: (Looking at Flamme) Were you thinking of something else? Or implying something different? Because I thought I understood…

Flamme: implying, sorry. To be honest, Elettrico isn’t far off when she says I like Tokatsu. He’s like an older brother to me in some cases. And I honestly think he likes me back.

Aiko looks around and takes note its only the two of them.

Aiko: C-can I tell you a secret? Promise you won’t say anything.

Flamme: It’ll be safe with me.

Flamme leans toward Aiko to whispering distance.

Aiko: (blushing) I want Matt to be the same with me…

Flamme: I see. Well I’m glad you think that, I actually think when he was wondering if you needed rest earlier, he wanted to make sure you were okay.

Aiko: He can be sweet and caring, and he’s nice. So I really like him.

Flamme: Heh, well it’s safe with me.

Aiko: Thank you. I would have to run and hide if he found out before I mustered up the courage to tell him…

Flamme: Heh, well you got a bit of time ahead of you. Get some rest Aiko. You deserve it after the trip here.

Aiko: Yeah (Standing up), I will, have a good night Flamme.

The two soon part ways as Flamme turned off the lights

Flamme: *to herself* I guess Ame was right…