Here's the third chapter!
Stanley had always been good at manipulating people. It was a skill that came with the evil business. Humans were weak, selfish creatures that were so pliant, it was almost laughable. Besides, even if the human was too stubborn, he could always use mind control. It was probably why Rosalyn was cautious around him.
But Rosalyn had two things going against him, the first being that she was the most stubborn person he knew. Sadly, the second was that her hero power would counter-act any mind control he tried, which he had learned the hard way. So, he did the next step, which worked with anything stubborn he knew: Learn how to work your way in.
This third step took a lot of time and thought, so the Great Evil King didn't use it often. And that's why Stan had been watching Rosalyn so much. What made her tick? Why did she respond to certain situations the way that she did? In the end, he had learned a lot about her.
She hated sexism. If there was ever a show of it, whether it be from villain, civilian, or fellow hero, the offender would never hear the end of it. She was very humble. If there ever was a problem that she had solved, and someone thanked her, she would blush heavily and wave it off as if nothing. She loved being a hero. For reasons still unknown to him, Rosalyn had become one, and loved it. The Hero was quick to anger, as he knew that very well, him being the reason behind it most of the time.
Knowing these things had given the Evil King the upper hand for once, but he still expected it to be somewhat challenging. But that was way too easy. Leave it to porker woman to lower his expectations. But then again, that probably wasn't fair; he had gotten to know her too well.
Fair? Stanley scoffed at the word. Since when did he care if he played fair or not? Being evil meant playing dirty. And he knew how to play dirty.
Ever since their little squabble, the hero had been unusually quiet. The Evil King would have at least expected to be bombarded by some more questions, but she remained silent. Stanley looked over his shoulder, eyes narrowing at the woman, only to see her staring off into space, her golden eyes filled with curiosity. It reminded him of the look Ari had when they had first stepped out of the Forest of Wilker. She started to open her mouth to speak before shaking her head and closing it again. Guess their little argument really had shut her up.
Stanley stared off at the little blob up ahead and started thinking. If he had been traveling with Ari, he would have hitched a ride in his shadow by now. True, after gaining his true form back from Beiloune, he relished the fact that he was now able to do stuff on his own. But after a few months, the laziness won out, and he started going back in his slave's shadow now and then, especially if Rosalyn was involved.
He had thought about slipping into Rosalyn's shadow, but that thing truly was suffocating. Not because he didn't like her, but because she was sure of herself. The thickness of people's shadows depended on how capable they thought they were. Ari's shadow was the most comfortable because despite his growing confidence, Ari had been one of the overshadowed, and that would always leave a mark on him.
The Evil King started to get bored again, so he decided to start up another argument with the pink-shadowed hero.
"Hey, are you mute and dumb, woman?"
Rosalyn looked up for a moment before responding.
"No, it's just, I was thinking..."
The Hero shook with rage before taking a deep breath and calming herself.
"I don't want to argue with you right now, so I'll ignore that."
The Evil King tried not to show his disappointment.
"What else is there to do?"
"You could tell me a little more about the people."
Stan thought about this for a moment before giving in.
"The people are all human. They have more races than your world, hair and eyes any color you can think of. In this country, people aren't as friendly to strangers. Their heroes here are called police—"
Rosalyn perked up.
"What are they like?"
Stanley shrugged. "Why would I know?"
"Never mind, continue..."
"Don't be giving ME orders. I'm not telling you anymore."
The Great Hero sighed.
"You are so childish."
The Evil King was true to his word. The rest of the trip was in absolute silence. This only made Rosalyn even more curious. These people sounded so different, what would it be like to meet one? What were their cities like? She spent the rest of the trip daydreaming.
Rosalyn had expected many things when picturing the city. She had expected something like Madril, with many gears. She expected many buildings all huddled together. She may have even expected just one huge building. But she was not expecting a wall.
It was at least 100 feet high, silver, and looked smooth to the touch. The Hero extended her hand to feel it, only to snap it back as an electrical shock ran though her arm.
"What is that?" She thought her question fell on deaf (or in Stan's case, uncaring) ears, when a small voice replied:
"It's the Great Wall."
Rosalyn and Stanley both turned to see a small girl, probably eight or nine, with blue hair and a green sundress with matching hair ribbon and flats.
"You guys must be from the other world. I think you guys are brave for coming here, if I went to your world, I would be scared."
Rosalyn was about to respond when another voice came into the picture.
"Mia! Mia! Wher- oh, there you are Mia. How many times do I have to tell you not to leave me when we're on the other side of the wall?" Another girl, no, young woman came running up to them. This one looked like she could have come from their world, except for her skin tone, which was a dark olive brown. She had big brown eyes and short curly hair.
"Oh, hi Maria. I was just talking to these gaijin—"
"How many times have I told you not to bother strangers?"
"But they're not strangers!"
The older girl glared, arms crossed.
"So then, what are their names? Huh?"
"Um..." the girl turned to the two."What are your names?'
Rosalyn giggled. The young woman looked at the hero.
"I'm so sorry about this; I've told Mia multiple times not to go bothering people..."
"Oh no, it's quite alright. We were just looking for the entrance to..."
The woman smiled. "The entrance is that way; we can escort you if you want."
"Yay! Come on Onee-san!" Mia started to tug on Maria's arm, pulling her a good deal away from the Hero and the Evil King, but still in sight. Rosalyn started to follow the two when she turned back to Stanley.
"You've been rather quiet."
Stan's eyes narrowed. "I don't like them."
"Because they're nice?"
"No, woman. Can't you feel it?"
"Feel what?" Rosalyn started to feel weird.
"It's an aura." Stan was still watching them. Mia was now whispering something in Maria's ear, causing her eyes to widen before stealing a quick glance at the other two.
Rosalyn concentrated on the two before feeling some strange power circling them.
"What is it? Is it like the former evil kings?"
Stanley shook his head. "It's neither good nor bad. It has the potential to be..."
The hero shrugged her shoulders. "Maybe it's just something that has to do with these people—"
"No. I've been here before, and no one felt like that." He smirked. "I believe this is going to be fun."
"Finding out where their power comes from. And when I do..."
Rosalyn turned around to face Stanley.
"Not on my watch."
The rest of the trip was quiet except for the occasional question from Mia.
"What's it like in your county? Do you have houses? I heard that you guys live in huts, but then my own teacher said that that isn't true, and you live in cities like us. What are your cities like? I heard that there's one that completely runs on gears!" The questions went on, much to Stan's annoyance, but Rosalyn would happily answer.
Stanley was about to tell the kid off when Maria shouted. "This is the place!"
The girl motioned to a thin line in the wall. After placing her hand on it, the crack glowed green before opening wide enough to let two people through. Maria and Mia slipped through, motioning for the two to follow. After slipping through, the crack closed up again, shutting out all light. The darkness only lasted for a few seconds, in which a few artificial lights switched on, revealing a long corridor with five doors on the right and one at the very end of the hallway.
"You'll want to go in one of those rooms," Maria pointed at one of the five doors. Rosalyn was about to enter, when she turned back to the evil king.
"Why aren't you...?"
"I've already got one."
"Just go in woman, you're wasting daylight!"
The hero rolled her eyes and shut the door with a loud thunk. She scanned the room to find in the same shade of white that the hallway was. In the very back was a computer with a complicated looking piece of equipment sitting next to it on a desk. After sitting herself down on the chair, the screen flashed to life, and then it started to ask her questions, like profession, birth date, and so on. She received a card with said information and a picture of her she hadn't realized had been taken.
When the hero left the room, Maria came and handed her a business card.
"Stan told us that he knows what to do now, and Mia and I have to meet with someone. So here's my card. Show it to anyone in the city and they'll give you direction to my place. Come if you have any questions or just want to hang out..." Maria was interrupted by Stan tapping his foot impatiently. Maria apologized quickly before grabbing Mia by the hand and going out of the last door. Rosalyn waited till the door the shut before socking the Evil King on the arm.
"Hey, what was that for woman?" Stan forcefully grabbed Rosalyn's wrist.
"Because you were being rude. Now Let. Go. Of. Me." Rosalyn glare turned colder as the evil king started to smile and grabbed her free arm.
Stanley gave her a confused look as he let her go.
"Why did you bring me here?"
He answered with a shrug. "I don't really know why, except that it's fun to annoy you."
She glared. "I'm—"
"What, leaving? You can't and you know it. You want to get to the bottom of those girls' powers as much as I do, I know you won't leave."
She slapped him on her way out of the door.
She was too predictable.
Hope you enjoyed it! Your turn Divine Wolfe!