Author. s note:
This is the second to the last part in the AN chapter. As usual, I write from character viewpoints. When third person narration changes to first person, the character is thinking. Every time there is a ***, that means change in scene, character viewpoint, passage of time and so forth. ~~~ means flashbacks. The first character viewpoint in this part is Daniel. s. Enjoy reading.
Part Ten of the Aveh-Nisan Chapter of Rebuilding
Comes Around
Written by Yen (July 2000)
"Midori, I want you to stay here."
Daniel's eyes opened, and he blinked sleepily at the softly illuminated ceiling.
"Your mother is right, Midori. You will be safe here."
"No, I want to go with you."
He rose hesitantly, wincing when his muscles protested, painfully insistent that he lay back down. He did.
Someone sighed. "You go on ahead to the labs, Hyuga. I'll stay with Midori for a while."
"... Very well-"
"No! I go as well!"
"No, my dear daughter, and that is final. I am afraid you will only get in the way."
"Perhaps we should take her along, Hyuga. Her talent is more powerful than mine."
"That is what alarms me. We have determined that mental command is the triggering mechanism. Unfortunately, science and logic know very little about how the mind actually works."
Midori piped in, "Emperor Cain knew."
There was a pause before Citan answered wryly, "I am not even going to ask how you know about him; however, Midori, the link between his Majesty and I were based on physical measures. An implant-"
Yui interrupted him, "No need to go into grim details, Hyuga."
Her husband chuckled. "She brought up the subject, my dear wife, not I." Another pause. "What have you been teaching her?"
"... Just what are you suggesting...?"
Their daughter suddenly shouted, "He talked with me too!"
"... Yui, did you know about this?"
"No, Hyuga!" There was a stamping sound. "That man was in our daughter's head! How could you let him do that?!"
"I did not know anything about it, and just how could I stop him...?"
Yui sounded livid. "You should have had an idea! If you had warned me, I would have shielded Midori's mind more-"
"Mother, you talked with him too."
"... And just when were you going to inform me about your conversations with Emperor Cain...?"
"... It didn't concern you, Hyuga."
"Oh really... how could it not concern me? You are keeping secrets from me again."
"Let's not go into that again."
"We will not or need to if you do not keep secrets from me."
"I'm not the only one who has secrets to keep."
"What secrets about me that you do not know of, Yui? You can read minds, remember?"
"I don't read minds, I hear them."
"Technicalities. It is the same thing. You have an unfair advantage over me."
"Don't you trust me?"
The debate stopped when a muffled chuckle escaped from Daniel.
"Do your parents often argue that way, Midori?" Daniel lifted curious eyes to her momentarily before returning full attention to the chessboard set up on a bed table resting over his thighs. By his side, his opponent was sit kneeling on the bed.
"Only when mother keeps secrets from father." She frowned, adding, "And when they are both trying to distract me." Midori was still miffed at being left behind in Daniel's care.
"I see..." He commented as he moved one of his knights to threaten a rook. He looked up from his move to stare at her. "... You and your mother are telepaths?"
Gold-brown eyes stared back at him calmly. "Does that disturb you, Daniel?"
He smiled. "Hardly, though I hope you are not reading my chess moves in advance."
"I do not read minds, I hear them," she replied, repeating her mother's words, "Don't you trust me?"
"Depends... I'll trust you if I win this game."
Samuel was staring at main image displayed by the grass mirror. On it, Daniel was talking amicably with the Uzuki child.
Hmm... So he has awakened finally. ... No... he still refuses to stop dreaming... He still doesn't know what has happened... Idiot!
Fei grimaced, and the young medic attending to his shoulder wound paused uncertainly. Fei forced a reassuring smile on his face and gestured for the treatment to continue.
"I'll take over here." Both looked up at Dan. He bent to a knee and calmly took the medipad from Sabar's hand. The other stared at him uncertainly until Fei nodded, giving him permission to leave.
"... This needs to be burned before a graft can close it, Fei."
"There's a solder in the kit."
He watched silently as Dan held up a slender steel rod with a ceramic grip. The impassive expression on Dan's face broke as he activated the solder. Its blunt tip began to glow red.
"... We should get someone with healing ether here." Dan lowered the rod.
"No," replied Fei with quiet force, "Healing ether should be saved for the ones with serious injuries." He shrugged. "This is minor."
He could see the boy's hand trembling before Dan closed his eyes and took a deep breath. "... Okay, Fei, if you say so."
Once more, he nodded and looked away as Dan's hand gripped his shoulder tightly. Fei focused his eyes instead on the caved-in entrance to the Fatima Mausoleum.
Soon, Elly... I'm almost there- A sharp hiss escaped from tightly pressed lips as the smell of burning flesh sought to suffocate him.
"We're doomed!"
"Shut up, idiot!"
"It's true! Those monster will be back, and they'll break down the door!"
"That door weighs more than a ton! It will not break!"
"Don't lecture me, Jabel! Those beasts murdered my wife!"
"You're only shaming her by weeping like a child, Tama!"
Zephyr looked away as Jabel continued ruthlessly, "She pushed you inside the room ahead of her so you could be saved! Do you want her sacrifice to be wasted?!" Tama jerked, his mouth opening and closing in respond without sound. After a while, he slumped down in his chair, shamefaced.
Jabel, who was standing, exhaled loudly and looked around the room. "Fear and panic will not serve us!" Gray eyes narrowed to angry slits set in a pale face. "I will not allow any stupid and worthless actions in here!" With that, he drove the dagger he had confiscated from Tama into the marble table. The blade snapped.
Bheyu shouted, "Imbecile! You have destroyed one of our weapons!"
Jabel tossed the bladeless hilt to him carelessly. "Better that then one of us." Green ether suddenly swirled around him. "If anyone else tries to emulate what Tama just tried to do, I will personally throw that individual out." No one else spoke up against him.
Zephyr shivered in her chair and wrapped weary arms around herself. ... In just three hours, insanity reigns... She found herself looking at the others. Less than half of the senators were present in the hall. There were secretaries and junior clerks as well as several guards present. All were haggard, the forced combatants and fortunate survivors of an unexpected war.
Jabel was staring at her, and she looked back quizzically. He had surprised her immensely. ... I always thought of him as a quiet lad... Jabel was the grand nephew of one of her closest friends, Kitsh. ... Dear Kitsh, bless his soul... He would have been shocked had he seen Jabel just now...
Sadness weighed on her shoulders as she remembered Kitsh, who had passed away peacefully three years ago. ... I miss you, Kitsh... you always try so hard to make me smile... A smile of nostalgia and remembered grief now came to her face as she closed her eyes and leaned back in her seat.
Jabel's soft voice startled her. "Your majesty." Zephyr looked up at him and smiled automatically. ... He resembles Kitsh when he was his age...
"Jabel, I am no longer an empress. Please do not address me by that title."
"How then may I address you?"
"Zephyr will do."
"Uncle Kitsh will turn over in his grave if I call you by your name."
"... Very well, young man, by sir or ma'am may you call me."
He smiled and bowed low to her. "If it is permissible, I would like to address you by the title my Uncle Kitsh always refers to you as such."
"... And what would that be?"
"My Lady Zephyr."
"Do you think it will come back, Bart?" Margie asked as she seated herself carefully in Vierge's outstretched palm.
Resting comfortably on Andvari's shoulder, Bart straightened slightly. "... I don't think it will be back, Margie."
"Do you really think so? Why?"
He shrugged and stretched his arms before crossing them underneath his head and leaning back against his gear's neck. "I think those things were desperate. We were beating them so they had to play their last card."
Margie looked at him silently before laying back and staring at the dark blue of the afternoon sky. "Bart, you know that's not their last card. Remember what Dr. Uzuki told us?"
"Margie, if I were one of those things, I would rather die then go through that joining or whatever it is they did."
"... The thought of being with another person so intimately disgusts you...?"
Bart sat up. "... Aw jeez! Margie, don't twist my words! That's not what I mean!"
Margie sat up as well and stared at him intently. "I wasn't referring to the physical joining, Bart." She looked away before continuing, "I meant knowing another person's heart, mind and soul as well as you would know your own." She laughed softly. "Becoming one..."
"... I guess I wouldn't mind," answered Bart softly. When she looked back at him, he smiled. "I wouldn't mind if it's with someone I like and love."
The smile she gave him was slow in coming but real.
Dan watched as Fei embraced Elly fiercely against him. He looked away when they kissed. Things like that irritated him more then interest him.
His jaw and cheek still ached where Fei's fist had connected resoundingly. He rubbed at them feelingly as rescuers from Aveh swarmed into the tomb. One of the soldiers almost crashed into him, and he quickly retreated away from the hubbub.
Dan leaned against the rock wall framing the entrance gangway and concentrated on a tooth. He was pretty sure that Fei's punch had loosened some of his teeth.
"How is she doing, Jabel?"
"Sabela is improving, my lady Zephyr."
"It is fortunate you have healing ether." She moved closer to Sabela who was lying prone on one of the side tables. Once in a while, she would move restlessly.
"Unfortunately, I am only a novice in the healing arts." Zephyr glanced at him again, wondering at the flatness in his tone wherever Sabela was concerned.
"... Jabel, is there something wrong?"
"My lady, may I speak freely?"
"... What is it?"
"... I had to leave Senator Casn behind."
He mechanically explained, "On my way here, I saw Senator Casn being attacked. He was carrying Sabela, who was unconsciousness, and he was trying to protect her from them." His eyes flickered close. "I was too late. When I managed to drive the mutants off, he was already severely wounded. ... I healed him, but I couldn't heal him enough for him to walk on his own. He begged me to take Sabela with me. I told him that I would help him walk. ... We managed to go a bit further when more mutants appeared. He ordered me to go ahead with her... My lady, what can I say to his daughter...?"
Zephyr smiled at him gently. "Don't worry, Jabel. I will tell Sabela. Is that all right with you?"
"... What will you say to her?"
"I will tell her what you told Tama." ... Casn... thank you.
Bendo was staring at him blankly as was Johan. "... Sseth?"
"You heard me, Johan. Bendo, attack her."
Both stared from him to the only other individual in the melee room.
Bendo, silent as usual, glanced at Johan before stepping forward unto the dirt court. On the other side waited Primera.
Citan- "There must be away to shield our minds... I believe you have a mental wall, Yui"
Yui- "I do, Hyuga, but it shields the mind. The receivers are in the bloodstream."
Citan- "Ah yes, but for the body to receive the call, it must pass through the mind before it goes into the bloodstream."
Yui- "So... it is nerve impulses from the brain which activate them..."
Citan- "And causes blood to coagulate. In effect, blood cannot circulate properly, and the heart strains to pump hard blood."
Yui- "Until there is no more oxygen to burn for energy... Hyuga, can we remove these receivers?"
Citan- "Only by filtering the entire circulation system. These receivers were the waste products of the virus. They are harmless and even beneficial until they receive the proper impulse to bond red blood cells together."
Yui- "... Won't the minds of people with injuries be activating these elements?"
Citan- "Only in the area of the injury. On the other hand, when these micro-transmitters receive the correct call, the entire circulatory system will be considered as one giant wound by our own blood cells."
Yui- "... It will be difficult. I do not know exactly what to shield against. Primera is esper-blind. Her mind automatically shields from all mental energy. I only know how to muffle it."
Citan- "Midori has protective ether. Perhaps she can shift its frequency to the mental plane."
Yui- "I do not like to involve Midori... but we may not have another choice."
Beddo was on his backside, staring bewilderedly at the luminescent silver sphere surrounding Primera.
Johan, after initial shock, had an impressed look on his convoluted face. "Sshe iss in your control, Sseth." He had noted the empty eyes of the girl. "But I have never sseen thiss kind of power." Beddo had suddenly been knocked away hard in mid-charge.
Seth answered, "She is a reverse telepath, Johan. There is a constant mental shield around her. No mind can stand to be near her when she uses that technique I have taught her."
Johan frowned thoughtfully as he help Beddo up. "But what good can that do for all of uss? Can sshe extend her sshield?"
Seth smiled. "She can, but that is not what I have planned for her."
Johan waited for him to expound more while Beddo was slowly approaching Primera again.
Seth laughed. "You may approach her now, Beddo. You may even pick her up."
Beddo gingerly lifted her and stared at her blankly when she smiled at him. Hesitantly, the Reaper smiled a wolf's grin back before deciding to let her sit on his shoulder.
Seth walked towards the exit. "Come, I will explain on the way to my room."
"Our little princess, I believe, was hurt badly."
"... What do you mean, Sseth?" Behind them, Beddo growl. "... You mean Nathan...?" Asked Johan.
"No," answered Seth immediately. "He didn't do anything to her. Something happened to her when she was very young, perhaps when she was an infant. Whatever happened to her was painful enough to affect the way her mind developed."
Johan paid close attention to his every word. "... What iss the difference between you and her, Sseth?"
"My mind is open to others, and I can reach out. Hers, on the other hand, is sealed shut. None enters, none escape. I cannot read her mind. She cannot hear my calls."
Something was bothering Johan. "... Then, how did you control her?"
"It was not easy," admitted Seth, "fortunately, she is ill-trained. There were tiny gaps through which I was able to enter her mind."
"I ssee... sso what do you plan to do with her?"
"Look back."
He glanced with puzzlement at Seth before looking back. He came to a sudden stop and shouted, "They're gon-" Something bumped into him. ... !?! "They're invissss- camouflaged..."
"That is right, Johan," said Seth.
"Elly, can your people fight?" Fei rested his cheek against her hair. Beside him, Elly shifted slightly before leaning against him. Her warm hands flattened against his chest.
"Yes, they can, Fei." Her answer was soft but certain. He straightened and looked at her carefully. Her sapphire eyes were unreadable.
"They will pay, Fei."
"Sir Jabel!"
Zephyr looked on curiously as Jabel turned away from her to the guard who had whispered his name urgently.
"What is it?"
"The vents! Those things are in the airshafts!"
She and Jabel stood abruptly and looked up. High on each corner of the ceiling were intricate steel webs concealing the openings of the ventilation system. Each was round and large enough for a man or mutant to jump through.
"Master Sigurd."
He halted upon Maison's stern call. "Don't try to stop me, Maison."
"You haven't piloted a gear in years."
He turned around. "I can't just stay behind and do nothing."
"You will do more by staying here."
His hands clenched. He didn't want to argue about this. "You cannot stop me," he finally said before turning back to the waiting Brigadier.
As he entered the cockpit, a helpless Maison whispered, "You are not well."
Another inhuman scream echoed through the city, and Aelia paused. ... Impossible... Suddenly weak, she fell to her knees and accidentally spilled paint on her work.
Numb, she stared at her ruined painting of Seth. ... Can't be- Another death howl came to her ears, muffled and mournful in her secluded studio.
Her brush fell from trembling fingers, and she grabbed at her head in pain. Dying... Tears welled in her eyes. ... they're dying...
Aelia, don't feel too much. Her eyes shut closed tightly. Tears ran down her face streaked with color from her paint-covered hands. Seth...?
Detach yourself. ... No... It wasn't Seth, just memories of her training under him.If you involve yourself too much, you'll feel their pain as well.
But don't I then feel their joys as well, Sensei?
Yes, but-
Wouldn't that be great?!
It's wonderful to feel others so deeply.
I would like to know you better, Sensei.
She pressed her body against his, her hands reaching up to pull his head down to hers.
His lips were parted, and she took that opportunity to kiss him deeply. He tasted nice. There was a familiar coolness in the warmth of his mouth.
He pulled away before she could figure it out.
"Aelia!" Seth backed away from her. His expression, a curious mix of anger, embarrassment and desire. Her pulse quickened. He wanted her.
He froze when she moved towards him. "Enough!" She cringed at the greater anger in his tone. Her shame suddenly exceeded her courage, and she turned away awkwardly. She couldn't help herself. Her emotions were topsy turvy where it concerned him.
"Concentrate," he then said more calmly. He sounded absent-minded. She turned back to him and despaired at the remoteness in his face. "You have to be detach, Aelia."
"... No." She lowered and shook her head, missing his narrowed eyes. "I-I can't do it that way. I want to feel everything. I don't want to miss anything."
His sigh was remorseful though his words were rueful. "Impulsive child."
I'm not a child.
Aelia picked herself off the floor slowly. Her tears had long since dried though paint still marked her face. She straightened as another of her subjects' cry reached her.
You are right, Sensei. I should be detached.
She looked at him in her painting. Painted eyes gleamed at her from an unrecognizable face. She smiled. I still don't want to miss anything, but I will do anything for you.
Be proud of me.
"Billy, stop it!"
"Leave me alone, Rico!"
Daran watched calmly from his chair positioned by the entrance to his smithy. The pale-haired lad was shouting at the demi-human.
"Mind your own business! I know what I am doing!" By his feet, a mutant was vomiting his insides onto the street.
"Billy! This isn't you." Daran tilted his head slightly, intrigued by the larger demi-human's submission. He could see the tightly controlled anger on the larger, obviously stronger man.
"Just shut up, Rico!" The etone turned his back to his companion and kicked the retching mutant in the stomach.
Daran muffled the cries of pain and beseeching pleas. He didn't want to deal with more of those. He didn't bat an eyelash when a gunshot silenced the unfortunate subject.
Sigmund's son screamed, "That's it!"
"Will you stop whining?"
"You keep quiet, Taura, you didn't do a single thing."
"Don't blame me for your troubles, Gaspar."
Maria couldn't help but smile despite the chaos of the city around them. She never expected grandfather's friends to act so unlike their age.
"You should have warned me!"
"How was I suppose to know they'd think you were the enemy?"
Walking behind the two antagonists, Jabel looked uncomfortable. Between him and Balthazar, Zephyr looked amused as the two men leading their group continued arguing despite the dangers of their trek through Nortune.
"You were monitoring the situation," hissed Gaspar.
Melchior started to recite, "Sensors indicated that they were gathering below the vent. I thought they were going to welcome you."
Gaspar simmered while her grandfather Bal chuckled at Melchior's next statement. "I told you to let the girls go first."
"That would be ungentlemanly," Gaspar countered, "we were going into a dangerous situation."
"Ohoh! So you did think they would think you were the enemy."
Gaspar spluttered, "The room was dark!"
Balthazar put in, "We should have announced ourselves."
"That's stupid, Isaac."
"I agree, surprising as it is. Announcing ourselves would have alerted them if they were enemies." Maria glared at Gaspar's and Melchior's backs respectively before moving closer to Balthazar. "Don't call grandfather stupid," she said loudly.
Surprised, both men glanced back to see Balthazar smile innocently at them while patting his granddaughter's head.
Bart was stumped silent as the Brigadier landed in front of Andvari. ... No way...
On Vierge's shoulder, Margie called out, "Sigurd!"
Bart commanded Andvari to extend its hand towards the other gear. He jumped onto the moving palm just as Brigadier's cockpit opened to reveal his brother.
"Are you crazy?!"
"Bart, don't talk that way to Sigurd."
"Margie, he shouldn't be here."
She gave him a curious look while Sigurd lifted his eyebrow at him.
Bart blinked nervously. ... Of course, Margie doesn't know about Sigurd's problem... His shoulders suddenly felt weighted. I wouldn't have too if old Maison hadn't told me...
"Why can't Sigurd play with us?" The young prince of Aveh stared up to Maison. With his hands on his hips, he was both regal and demanding.
Maison harrumped. "Master Sigurd is busy attending to his duties."
"Oh no! He's my father's personal attendant, and father is not here right now."
His manservant looked just the slightest bit uncomfortable. "His Highness, your father, left Master Sigurd additional work to be done in his absence."
"Father won't be back for a week. Sigurd can work later." With that, he walked up to Sigurd's door and would have had Maison moved aside.
Impatient, he tugged at Maison's pants leg. "Go away."
Patiently, Maison pushed him away. "I'm sorry, your Highness, but Master Sigurd cannot play with you and Lady Marguerite."
He pouted. "Why not?!" He started to sniffle. "I want Sigurd to come out and play with us!" If he had to, he will have a royal tantrum.
Maison was beginning to look alarmed. "... Why don't you ask the other children to play?" He said soothingly.
"What other children?!" Maison winced.
Bart fisted his hands. "I want Sigurd to come and play with us!"
"Later!" Maison took a deep breath before continuing more calmly. "I promise, he will play with you two later."
"That's what you always say!"
The door behind Maison opened, and a woman stepped out with a frown. "Will you two please be quiet?" She said in a tone that allowed no argument.
Maison flushed slightly and quickly picked him up. "We will be going now, Nurse Bethelm." Bart stared at her over Maison's shoulder as the latter retreated at a fast clip.
"... Nurse?" He looked at Maison. "Why does Sigurd have a nurse?" He received no answer. "... Is Sigurd sick? What's wrong with him?"
It had taken quite a while before Maison told him about Sigurd's illness. Diathesis - a constitutional predisposition toward abnormality or disease. Sigurd was not ill; however, he was susceptible to be sick. Stress, weariness, pain, overexertion and the like increased the likelihood for him to be ill.
Bart felt like how Maison had felt. He looked helplessly between Sigurd and Margie. He promised Maison he would never tell anyone about it.
"Bart." He glanced at Sigurd. His brother looked solemn. "I'm all right, Bart."
"Of course you are," said Margie cheerfully, "I'm happy you are here, and so is Bart."
Decided, Bart turned to her. "Margie, there is something you should kn-"
The roar of gear thrusters drowned him out as Fenrir and Heimdal arrived and hovered overhead.
"Sigurd, good to see you in a gear again."
He chuckled softly and thumbed the com unit to reply. "On time as usual, Hyuga."
"Huh? What do you mean, Sigurd? Has something happened?"
"Never mind. So have you found something?"
"Indeed, and more than anyone of us could ever expect."
Margie sat down gingerly in Andvari's palm. Beside her, Bart was sitting with his legs dangling over the edge. He looked sullen, but then, he did almost fell off when the other gears surprised him.
"Bart?" She frowned when he kept quiet, looking grumpy. Some gratitude, Margie thought. Her shoulder was sore. It was almost dislocated when she grabbed Bart's hand as he lost his grip on Andvari's hand.
I will never understand you, Bart. She turned away and watched Fenrir and Heimdal landing instead. Sometimes, he acts so immature.
"Thanks, Margie." His hand covered hers and squeezed gently. Her eyes closed fondly. But he means everything to me.
Yui watched as Fenrir's cockpit opened, and Daniel emerged from it hesitantly. Behind her and watching over her shoulder, Midori was eerily still.
She shook her head mentally, wondering at her uncertainty where Midori was concerned. She started when her daughter hugged her and relaxed immediately.
Yes, dear?
Thank you for letting me come.
You're welcome, Midori, but after this, you are going back to the palace.
I know. I understand.
Sigurd - "Daniel, you're awake!"
Daniel - "Yes, I am, Sir. I am sorry to have caused so much trouble."
Citan - "Not at all. You have no idea what you have done for us."
Daniel - "Any of you would have done the same."
Bart - "Yeah, but none of us have what you have."
Daniel - "... Huh?"
Margie - "You gave us the cure to the virus."
Daniel - "Virus? What virus?"
Sigurd - "The virus left by those have-nots."
Citan - "We can tell Daniel about that later. Right now, he has something to tell us."
Bart - "What do you mean, Citan?"
Sigurd - "Tell us about what?"
Yui - "He knows about the enemy."
Bart - "... What?!"
Daniel - "No, Lady Uzuki, I do not know about the enemy, but Samuel does."
Margie - "Mr. White?"
Daniel - "... You talked with him...?"
Margie - "A few times."
Citan - "Where is he, Margie?"
Margie - "I have no idea. He just appears unexpectedly."
Bart - "So how do we find him, Daniel?"
Daniel - "Lady Uzuki and Midori can call him."
Citan - "I beg your pardon."
Daniel - "They can call him."
Bart - "Woah... why them in particular?"
Daniel - "... Because."
Margie - "... That is not an answer, Daniel."
Sigurd - "Let's just leave it at that."
Bart - "... You know about this, don't you, Sigurd?"
Yui - "He does?"
Citan - "Do not look at me, Yui. I did not say anything."
Midori - "I told him."
Yui - "You what?!"
Margie - "Told him what?"
Bart - "What's going on here?!"
Daniel - "It's Prism!"
Daniel almost backed away when all turned to stare at him. Unfortunately, the makeshift platform composed of several gear palms provided little room for retreat.
Bart repeated, "Prism?"
How was I supposed to know telepathy is to be kept secret? He cleared his throat. "Yes, Prism."
Margie asked, "Prism is special?"
"Yes," Daniel answered. "He belongs to Samuel," he lied, "they're connected." He hoped that neither would ever learn his falsehood. "However, since he gave Prism to Midori, she can command Prism to contact Samuel."
"Uh huh." Bart looked skeptical. "Where does Yui fit into this?"
Daniel straightened. "Midori is very young. She needs her mother."
Margie gestured at Citan. "What about Doctor Uzuki?"
"Samuel pays more attention to girls," reasoned Daniel baldly. Sigurd chuckled at that with Citan looking nonplussed.
Yui laughed softly and bent to pick up her daughter. "Any more questions?" She directed the query at Bart and Margie. Both nodded looking sheepish but satisfied.
"He's good," Midori commented.
"We do have a problem, Daniel."
"What is that, Dr. Uzuki?"
"Prism flew away. We don't know where he is."
Citan observed the young man's face keenly. Daniel seemed unconcerned.
"Prism will come."
"How can you be so certain?"
"Prism likes your daughter very much. Before her, I was the only one he would come to." Before he could ask another question, Daniel turned with a hurried apology and walked away.
"You worry too much, Hyuga." He glanced aside to Yui who looked as confident as Daniel. Holding on to her hand, Midori stared up to him. "I like birds," she stated.
Citan smiled and lifted her up into his arms. "I know you do, little one."
"I miss home."
The manor. Yes, there are always birds at home. "We will go back there someday," he promised her.
Midori rested her head on his shoulder and sighed softly just as Yui's arms slipped around his waist and squeezed affectionately before she walked away, leaving them alone.
"How much longer is this gonna take?" Complained Bart. He, Margie and Sigurd were waiting on the roof side opposite to the others. Daniel had insisted they all go to the flat roof of the palace. Without the guard towers, it was the highest elevated area in the city.
"Be patient, Bart," said Margie, "we've only been here for about fifteen minutes."
Sigurd glanced skyward, "At least, it is a cloudy day." The sky was white-gray with clouds instead of the perpetual blue of the desert day.
*Chirp* Fatima eyes widened as Prism landed atop Sigurd's head. *Chirp*
Smile tenderly
Sing gently
Laugh sweetly
Forever I dream of you.
To be continued...
Author's note: One more part to go, and finally, the Aveh-Nisan Chapter of Rebuilding is finished. Thank you for reading this far.