This article, 1st Strand: Who Are We?, is property of Spit_fire0x0.

It was a calm and quiet evening at the Masquerade Guild. The sunset had a beautiful effect on the color of the clouds, making them look as if they were set ablaze. The guild members, asside from three s-class members and the Guild Master, are at the gathering hall; lounging from a long day of teadius jobs. Emilly Rosaria, the guilds most recent maid/waitress/bartender, was taking orders at the food court as she does every other evening. With her pen and note pad in hand, she confidently approaches guild member Talon Lucial, as he was quietly reading a book to himself, to take his order.

"Can I help you with anything sir?" she asks with a sarcastic smirk on on her face. "Well look at you." replies Talon. "You've only been here for a week and now you're as confident as ever." he continues. "Well Mr. Kazema always said that confidence was the key to success." Emilly says while casually taking a seat. Talon pulls out a cigarette and lites it with a match. He then puts it into his mouth, takes a deep breath, and lets out a puff of smoke while looking out into sunset. "Yeah that sounds like something he'd say." Talon says as he lets out another puff of smoke. "He's always been so wise, even before he became guild master." he continues. "Are you good friends with him?" Emilly asks. "I'm more of a fan than a friend." Talon replied. "His master, our second guild master, Lexodus Maverick is a close friend to me." "Does he remind you of Lex?" Emilly asks curiously. "Hell no!" Talon replies bluntly. "They have absolutely nothing in common whatsoever!" "So what makes you a fan of Mr. Kazem I wonder?" Emilly replies.

"Its the simple fact of being raised by Lex and not having his personality rub off at all; THAT's what makes me admire him" Talon explains. "I've known Lex for 7 years and I ended up just like him" he continues. "I've even took up smoking from him, it's amazing how much of an influence a single person can have on another's life." Talon puts out his cigarette using the glass ash tray at the table and tossess it out the window. Emilly notices a deep sadness within Talon, even behind his facade of a smile. "Well I should get back to work" she says. Emilly stands up from her seat; attempting to avoid a deep conversation. However, as she walks away, Talon stops her by the skirt and asks, "So how long are you planning on working here?". "I guess until I earn back the money I was conned out of" she replies. "Not to be rude or anything, but the pay here is above average." Talon says. "I'm positive you've earned enough money to get to Fiore, right?" he continues. Emilly puts up a fake smile and says, "Haha! You're right about that. Its just, I can't picture myself living alone."

"Aren't you moving in with you're parents from your late grandmother's house?" Talon asks carefully. "My parents work all the time, and I'd probably only see them like once a week." she replies while wipping her tears. "And all my friends are back in Bosco so It'll be really annoying just staying at home with nothing." "Well you can always stay here." Talon suggested. "Sorry, but I don't see myself working as a waitress." she answered. "So what DO you see yourself doing in the future?" Talon asked. Emilly sits back down and ponders for a moment. Then she replies, "I don't know honesty." She rests her cheek against her hand and continues to think about her answer. Talon peers over Emilly's shoulder to scan the room and shouts, "Hey Shura! Get your butt over here. I need to ask you something." Shura Lute, another member of Masquerade, looks over at Talon, stops his game of pool with his company, and walks over to Talon's table. "Stopping while I'm totally owning at billiards, this better be good." he says demandingly. "What did you do before you became a mage?" asks Talon.

Shura picks up the glass ash tray at the table and closely examines it. "Have you been smoking again?" he says. "Yeah, but what does that have to do with.." Shura quickly interrupts him by smashing the ash tray up against Talon's face and says, "Those shards of glass in your face are healthier than a lifetime of lung cancer. You better quit those nasty habits soon man!" "I swear I'm gonna get you back for this one. AARRGG!." Talon yells. "As for your question, I had nothing at all before I became a mage." Shura replies getting back on topic. "It's pathetic, but it's true. The day I became a mage was the day I discovered the ultimate form of freedom."


It was a snowy day at an unknown orphana....

"Sorry Mr. Author guy, but It's not the right time for a flashback yet!" Shura exclaims while rudely interrupting the author.

-Exit Flashback-

"Basically, I was taught while in an orphanage by a man who constantly visited the kids." he continues. "From there I knew that becomming my own person and defining myself the way I want to, was the only method to escape my "prison"." "Well that's a nice story and all, especially the part when you shut the author up, but what does this have to do with anything?" Emilly asks. "Yeah, what's with the sudden curiosity in my past." asked Shura. Talon closes his book and places face up on the table; with the title reading "Who Are We?". "Emilly, would you even consider learning magic?" Talon asks with a sudden glare in his eyes. "To be honest, I only know a tiny tiny bit of Pulsar Magic. My grandma taught me some before she passed on." Emilly replies. "Then answer me this: Would you even consider joining a guild?" Talon asks in a serious tone. In an instant, the mood at the food court instantley went from talkative and rambunctious to dead silence. "Whu, Where exactly is this going?" Emilly asks; showing signs of slight fear.

"Where do YOU think this is going?" Shura replies. The room remained silent for, what it seemed to be, at least an eternity. "Are you asking me to join your guild?" Emilly hessitantley asked. Suddenly, a man in white weilding a large sword on his back, walks down the steps that lead to the second floor of the food court and approaches Emilly. "Mr. Kazema? I thought you were busy today." Emilly says. "Well? Do you wan't to join or not?" says Akira. Emilly pauses, then lets out an extremely loud laugh and exclaims, "If it means I get stop waiting on every hand and foot that comes through that door. Then heck yeah!" Almost the entire room applauded and cheered for Emilly's choice. "Does anyone have any objections?!" Akira shouts in a semi-laughing tone. A voice in the near distance echoed, "I" The crowd's celebration came to a commedic halt. "I", seconded another unknown voice. "I", added a third mysterious voice. "And will the three that are not in agreement with this please show themselves?", shouted Akira.

"We're up here!", shouted one of the voices. Emilly and the others immediately look towards the second floor and on the hand rail connected to the floor above them was a white haired child, a dark haired child leaning against the railing, and a blue haired girl with half of her body sticking out of the cieling. "Who are they?" Emilly asks. Talon replies, "Those three are our youngest members.". "The one on the left is Reikon Roland. The blue haired girl is SEAM, our Self Efficient Artificial Mage." "Artifficial Mage?" Emilly questions. "Yes." Talon replies. "She was created by the founder of the guild, Sheik Loxart, fifteen years ago. She's sort of our personal computer slash security system. But we consider her an honorary mage. The white haired brat in the middle is Skiel Lor. Don't let their appearance fool you, their S-Class mages; asside from Rei Rei." "Hey! Wait a minute!" Emilly shouts angrily. "Why exactly don't you want me to join?" "Don't get me wrong, we have nothing against you personally, but we just can't have some weakling that knows almost no magic join our guild." explains Skiel.

"So what do you suggest we do about it?", asked Akira. "Well I didn't have an idea, but litte Rei over here did.", answered Skiel. "I figured she should have to go through a trial. To see if she has what it takes to help hold down the fort in case anything went wrong.", Rei replies. "All in favor for little Rei's decission say "I".", shouted Akira. The entire room replied with a powerfull "I". "Wait. You too Talon?", says Emilly. "Like they said, it's nothing personal, but with someone that has as little skill level as you do, I believe this is necessary. Bessides, a little training is always healthy." replied Talon. "So it's settled in 5 days Emilly will have to take on Talon Lucial in a duel." exclaimed Akira. "And to make it fair, I'll coach her to make sure she doesn't get killed." said Rekon. "I thought you didn't want me in the guild." questions Emilly. "Those words never left my mouth." replies Reikon. "Well then thanks a lot kid!" shouts Emilly. Reikon grabs the railing with his right hand flips over into the air. Planting his feet off of the cieling as a result of the momentum, he pushes off with his legs and flips onto Emilly's table shouting, "If you call me a kid again I swear there'll be a training accident the moment we get started!".

"Sorry Rei Rei, but you being 15 years old makes you a kid." Talon added. Reikon stares straight into Emilly's eyes and says, "Tommorow at noon, meet me at the Training Site down the block. If you're even 1 second late, we're runny 50 laps around the guild. Not sprinting, not jogging, not walking. Running!" "You're about to go through 5 days of pure hell." says Talon. "Its true." added Shura. "Out of the entire guild, Reikon is the training buff. When he trains he goes all out." Emilly's legs begin to shake, however, she stands up, slams her fists onto the table and shouts with a fearful voice, "I'm ready for this!" The entire room replies, "No you're not!"

And from there, the day ends. Will Emilly pass her test and join Masquerade? More importantly, will she survive Reikon's 5 days of furry? Read the next chapter of Destiny's Silk to find out.

5 Days of Fury: 2nd Strand: The Challenge Ahead

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