AN: A Halloween treat, for the most paranormal night of the year. Hope you like it. A warning for bad English grammar.
Forty-three Years Ago
No one was sure of how or when everything begin, as unexplained cases were always there in every police station submerged on a dusty and forgotten archive of unsolved cases all around the world. Back then, more than two decades ago, those unsolved cases were few and detectives gave them very little attention, mostly for the mysterious nature of the events in question and the little evidence gathered which leaded to nowhere in particular. Those were the cases no one could find a logical explanation of the events that took place at the time and therefore, they remain forgotten and unsolved for years.
However, forty-three years ago those unsolved cases which no one cared to investigate, begin to rise from just a few in a year to a lot in a few months. Mysterious murders, disappearances, accidents, injuries, strange phenomena, multiples sightings of ghostly figures and other paranormal activities, became the daily living basis everywhere and normal people began to panic when the supernatural world became a part of their lives. Many went mad in the first year and other preys of their own fears, the rest wanted explanations and a solution to the raising problem that Churches and Temples could not handle on their own, given the great numbers of cases. That's when groups of paranormal investigation teams begin to form all around the world and the police give them special authority and jurisdiction to make sure the cases will no longer remain unsolved and the society could have a little of normalcy back.
Forty-three years later, the paranormal investigation department was the biggest one on each police station and the most respected of them all. Those with special abilities that have always been aware of the paranormal side of the world and who were previously made fun of or called crazy before everything changed, became essential to the new way of life and to the adapted human society. Those 'weird' ones which many people didn't care to understand or believe in their abilities before, were now on high demand to form the new teams that were given the task to solve as many cases as possible and to train those who were born gifted, a series of elite schools were created to prepare the new generation for the new challenges ahead of them. It was in that period that Mai's life gave a big change and this is her story.
Chapter One: Japans New Recruitment
"Did you hear? Apparently the E.I.P.I (Elite International Paranormal Investigators) are going to recruit a few members here and they will give a conference at the amphitheater in an hour. The rumors said that famous English Oliver Davis will be there looking for possible candidates. Oh, how I wish to have born with supernatural abilities. If I had, maybe I would have a chance to meet him. Whichever woman that ends up working for him is a lucky one." A girl to her right said giggling and Mai almost roll her eyes in annoyance. Yeah, the guy was supposed to be a handsome one, but a man should be more than looks to really become the dream of every woman, or so she thought.
"Oh, I wish I was more talented. I had seen his picture on the web many times and he is definitely something else, but I guess he will only recruit the best ones in here right? I mean, I'm a medium but my abilities aren't that great, so I don't really have a chance to be choose. I bet that Hara will be the one chosen from this university. She is the best in here and the most talented in class as far as I know. Maybe she has become famous enough for the internationals to come and see her in action personally. That would be great, right? Japans best gifted woman in the best team ever!" Another girl said and Mai thought that it was a good time to head for class before she could hear more nonsense coming from the pair of girls, at a library no less. Masako Hara was good indeed, but not really the best one on the paranormal course. Still, the possibility of her been the one chosen was great and as her former friend, she was glad she had progressed far enough to work all around the world, even before graduating.
They were very good friends when younger, although she had to admit that their friendship has become a distant one as they grow up and she became popular at the paranormal school. Masako's abilities were significant since childhood, while hers where average at best back in the time they still spend time together and she fondly remembers when she encourages her to do her best and awake her full potential to become the best medium in Japan. Those were very good times and she sadly missed them.
While Masako become well-known and respected, she become reclusive and barely noticeable by others when her parents die on a car accident years ago. The accident was caused by a vengeful spirit that wanted to kill his murderer, which was driving in front of her parent's car and when the men lose control of his car, her father didn't have the time to avoid the collision and both of her parents perish in the act, along with the fugitive criminal. Their deaths took its toll on her and she gradually changed in her pain, until she become too lonely for her own good. Right now, she could truthfully say that her only friends these days were persistent spirits that for some unknown reasons others mediums could not see them.
She walked out of the library and look at the amphitheater direction before going on the opposite way. She already knew of the conference, but she was thinking of skipping it. There was no real reason she should attend, they will probably talk nonstop about the paranormal rising history she already knew and the needed abilities to combat the everyday treats people could be victims of, which she also knew. The only real thing she could be interested with, will be the evaluation of candidates. She was a little curious of how they choose their members, but then again she already knew which ones were the more gifted in campus with Yasuhara Osamu at the top and Masako following close behind. If someone else was chosen instead of them, then the E.I.P.I. didn't deserve to call themselves elites.
"I have always thought that you don't give yourself enough credit. If the foreigners don't recruit you, they all are a bunch of idiots." A male voice said behind her and Mai felt the temperature drop a few degrees. Knowing fully well which spirit was getting inside her head, she sighed in resignation.
"You know, this isn't the best moment to show up, Touda. The foreigners, as you call them could exorcise you if they find you wandering around like you own the place. You should know better than to haunt me under their noses." She replies not stopping her advance toward her next class. The ghost had been following her ever since her parents die and in a way, he had sadly become her only remaining friend.
"Who is haunting you? I'm just telling you the truth, nothing more nothing less. Familiars, like myself can only be seen by the highest of mediums and not even the Hara traitor can clearly see me." Touda said with a hint of anger on his voice.
"She is not a traitor Touda. I was the one who change, she has the right to keep moving forward to make her dreams a reality. It's not her fault my parents die and I have a hard time trying to adjust to a world without them." She said and the temperature lower even more.
"Well, that's what friends are for, right? You have a hard time and where was she? Too busy showing off her talents right and left to grow her ego even bigger?" Touda asked in fury, just remembering those hard times he watched her cry all the time was enough to enrage him.
"Stop it Touda, don't go causing a fire here or they will truly exorcise you." Mai said slowing her advance to give her so called guardian spirit, a chance to calm down.
"As if they could. I'm not one of those spirits that will disappear with a chant, I am god summon by Abe No Seimei himself, which was the best onmyouji in this country history." He proudly said.
"Yeah... you are old alright..." She said and smiled a little when he vanishes angrier than before. The hot headed spirit was easy to tease and she need her humor back. After a few more minutes she reached her classroom and to her big surprise it was already full, even when the class was scheduled to being after the conference.
She had thought of reading something until the conference ends and her group came back for the class, but when she enters the classroom from the back door as she usually did, almost every seat was already taken. She looked down at the podium and she understood why the classroom was unusually full at that hour. The E.I.P.I. where there, answering and asking some questions to the students. Did they change the place for the conference? She asked herself before resigning to her own fate.
"Great, so much for skipping the conference." She said to herself taking sat on the only one available, the one next to the big glass window. Far below, sitting on one of the chairs close to the podium, Oliver Davis looked up to the girl who just enter a second ago. He felt the familiar a few minutes ago, but now that she was close by, the presence was even stronger.
"Lin, can you sense it too?" Oliver telepathically asked to the tall slender man which was sat by his side and saw him nod in response to his question.
"Yes, she is definitely a finder and her familiar is quite powerful. I can't say which one is guarding her, but is probably an old one." Lin reply back as he focuses his senses on her.
"Do we have her on the student's files?" Oliver asked, already checking the huge list of the paranormal course in the Tokyo University. His table was full of files from potentials candidates and although they have only asked for a selected group, they end up taking far too many files with them.
"It should be there if she is here. I suggest you to use a bit of clairvoyance to find her faster, otherwise it could take you all day to get her file. There are too many students here with supernatural abilities. No wonder Japans branch is the biggest of them all." Lin said while pretending to hear what Madoka was saying to the students.
"Using clairvoyance on this may files will give me a really big headache. Can you ask her name?" Oliver ask sighing. He rather not looks through all the files with his power when there could be an easier way to do so.
"You are the one in charge, ask her yourself." Lin said, not too surprised for the question. Oliver Davis was probably the strongest paranormal user known worldwide, but he liked simplicity most of all when dealing with things that he will call them bothersome.
"It will look strange if I just ask her name out of the blue, right?" Oliver said, giving the girl a glance. She didn't seem interested in them, which he found it both rude and amusing at the same time. Most people with paranormal abilities dreamed with a chance to work for him, yet the girls seem to be annoyed.
"The same will apply to me as well." Lin reply, taking notice at the amusing expression on his young boss. It has been a while since he has seen that kind of expression on him while participating on a conference. Most of the time, he was irritating with the attention certain females took on him and this time should not be any different with most of the students present been females. He then looked to where his gaze has wonder and smirked when he saw, said girl looking at the outside glass window with a bored expression on her face. This should be interesting, Lin thought.
"Madoka, can you ask her?" Oliver telepathically asked the pink haired woman giving the conference and the moment she turned to look at him for a second, he regretted asking her.
"Oh my, are you already so madly in love that you need to know her name that badly?" Madoka asked and Oliver sighed. Really, just what possess him to ask her knowing she will say something like that afterwards.
"Not this again, we came here because Gene suggest that we should recruit a certain girl from Japan with a special kind of power. The girl fits the criteria we are looking for and that's all." Oliver reply resigning himself to look through all the files, but just then he felt a familiar pull on his mind and he hears Gene laugh.
"Don't bother looking at the files Noll, she is not there. I felt her presence and go looking for her and find her on the library. She leaved when some fans of yours were talking about you and I believe she was going to skip the general conference and headed for the classroom for others reasons, not because of the primary selection." Gene said to his brother while thinking he already liked the girl.
"Well, do you know who she is or not?" Oliver asked, already getting impatient.
"Sorry brother, I have no idea of her name or anything else. The only thing I can tell you, is that she can see the spirit world way better than any of you and I think her guardian is not exactly a spirit, but a minor god." Gene said to him and Oliver looked back to the girl still looking at the outside with surprise. He wasn't exactly expecting that one.
"Madoka, stop the lecture now and get everyone out of the room, except that girl." Oliver said and Madoka looked at him like he has gone mad. "I need to test this girl power now, get the rest of the candidates somewhere else, I think we already find what we were looking for." He added and with a charming smile, Madoka assented in understanding.
"Oh my, just look at the hour. We were supposed to do some test on your abilities at the amphitheater. Shall we go now? Are you ready to show us just how talented you have become?" She asked and the group and the previous silence became a thing of the past as the students get too excited with the idea.
"That's the spirit, now please, head for the amphitheater now and we will be there very shortly." She said to the lively group and they begin to go out. Lucky for them, most of the girl take her time going out from the door next to the podium and giggled when getting closer to Oliver, but he didn't pay them any attention as he focuses on keeping the door leading to the back seats securely closed, just in case she decides to leave. Since Gene has said she wasn't there for the primary selection, then there was no reason for her to just follow the rest of the crowd.
Lin and Madoka try to hurry the rest out, as they sense him getting tense. The girl wasn't paying them any attention, perhaps she was simply waiting for the crowd to leave, yet Oliver simply wanted to see how capable she was. It wasn't exactly strange than the more talented youths didn't stand out, most of them didn't even knew they have stronger powers or they simply didn't care. He didn't know which case she was, since she wasn't selected as a candidate by the professors, but whoever had a god as a familiar, even if it was a minor one was definitely stronger than the average.
Soon, the place was almost empty as only two more students were left; a young man with glasses and a girl with traditional clothes. As they begin to move down, Oliver gathers some energy, ready to test her the moment the door closed after the remaining two, but before they could even get closer to exit, the door slammed closed with force. Both Lin and Madoka looked at him in surprise, thinking he was the one closing it, but knew better when he too looked surprised. The girl with traditional clothes gasped looking at the door and the room became cold in seconds.
"There is an uninvited guest Noll, should we take care of it?" Lin asked readying himself for a fight and Oliver stood up a little angry for the interruption. Out of nowhere a seat from the middle of the staggered room was detached from its place and was thrown toward him with force, but it never reaches him as he easily pushed back the seat toward the end of the room, but not close to the girl that has risen in alarm and surprise of the sudden attack. The guy with the glasses pushed the girl with traditional clothing to the floor when another seat went flying closer to them, Oliver was going to redirect it again at the back of the room, but the ghostly figure took control of it, sending it toward the girl he has become interest into.
For a moment, Oliver almost froze in horror when she didn't dodge nor made any attempt to stop the coming thing toward her, but then extremely hot flames erupted from nowhere, burning the seat to ashes in seconds. The fire vanishes soon after, but it had been intense enough to activate the water sprinkler system, sending the water down over them.
Still, that kind of make the ghost angrier and it moved toward the girl at the back, but was paralyzed half way by the guy with glasses who was chanting an incantation. Lin moved to join the guy, as to make sure he had a hold of him and was impressed with the way the binding was perfectly made in such a fast move.
"Let go of me! I will not be sent back!" The ghost said trying to struggle his way out, but unable to do so.
"Should we exorcise it?" Asked the guy with glasses, but the girl with traditional clothes rises from the floor.
"Wait Yasuhara! This is not an evil spirit, it's only afraid of been sent back. It's a young boy." Masako said, while he looked at her.
"But he was going to hurt Taniyama back there." Yasuhara reply back giving the soaking wet girl a glance. Surprisingly enough, she only sighed.
"Thanks for worrying, but I can take care of myself. We have practice with each other in class, you know I can handle this much." Mai said a little worry. She was going to use PK to redirect the seat, just like Oliver Davis did before, but Touma acted before her and now there was a chance that he had been exposed to one of the best paranormal investigator in the world.
"Oh, well... that's true... sorry Taniyama, chivalry sometimes is hard to beat, but you were awesome." Yasuhara said smiling at her. "So what should we do, boss?" He asked to Oliver Davis, who raise an eyebrow at word. Lin smirked amused. The guy certainly had guts.
"I will take care of him." Mai said moving closer to the spirit. She has always possessed a rare ability to send spirits back to the place they belong.
"Mai…" Masako begins to protest, but she stops her.
"I will not harm him, you know that." Mai said rising her right arm and with a gentle touch, she slightly touched the spirit forehead. "Don't be afraid, I mean no harm, but you don't belong in this realm anymore. Be at peace and reunite with your love ones." And with that, the spirit banishes in warm mist. Back at the podium, Oliver Davis watched the scene in fascination. They may had discovered a missing piece of the biggest puzzle in the paranormal rising, the bridge between the two worlds.
AN: Thanks for reading and happy Halloween. This wasn't scary enough, but oh well… slow updates. Take care.