chapter sixteen | emma

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Kaito immediately jumped forward and grabbed Emma's hand, shaking it vigorously. "Hi, Emma! I'm Kaito! Nice to meet you!"

Emma jumped in surprise and mustered a smile. "H-hi..."

"Well, now that we have all calmed down, Emma, can you answer some of our questions?" I asked.

"Like how you found us." Hikari raised her eyebrows.

"Uh... Well... I k-kind of f-followed you all until here..." Emma admitted.

"You followed us?" Hikari probed.

"It's not what i-it looks like! After those two girls over there beat me," she pointed at Lyra and me, "I thought about how my future was going to be like if I was so w-weak. Arael d-didn't really treat me well, so..."

"So?" said Reaper.

Sienna stepped forward, a knowing smile rising to her lips. "So she wants to join our guild."

Emma gulped and nodded, her hands clasped together over her chest.

"Already? We just accepted three members," commented Kiran. Asurma nodded, giving a small 'yeah'.

"Look at her. If we don't accept her, she'll be lost with no one to go to. Plus, she's shown that she can fight pretty well," I said, relating well to the first part of my statement.

Following what I said, the rest glanced at Emma and then proceeded to look back at Sienna, the guild leader, who narrowed her eyes directly at Emma, deep in thought.

She looked back at us. "We should accept her. Any protests?"

No one contradicted her decision.

Sienna nodded. "Then, Emma, welcome to Clement Guild," she said, the familiar words entering my ears.

Emma's eyes lit up and she smiled broadly in gratitude. "R-really?! Thank you!"

I smiled at the look of happiness on her face- she looked genuinely relieved and happy.

~

We were back on the train, this time hauling a bag of jewels with me. What should I buy with these?  I stared thoughtfully at it.

"This is Nightingale Town, Nightingale 25th street. Please check your overhead luggage rack for any personal belongings," the train conductor's voice announced through the speakers. Having barely any luggage, all of us filed out with our rewards, satisfied but still slightly in shock of what happened.

"...S-so, w-what's your name?" Emma asked, hesitant to speak to Lyra.

Lyra's eyebrows shot up in surprise at the sudden question from a girl who seemed so timid. "My name is Lyra," she responded as confidently as she could.

They carried on their conversation, just like how Sienna and Lana, Reaper and Grim, Kiran and Asurma continued their casual banter and chatting. Their voices were gradually blocked out as I remained silent, drifting more into my thoughts as the twelve of us, including Emma, strolled back towards our guild house. 

When I think about it, their personalities do seem similar in a way.

~

"Dinner is ready!" I heard Hikari call out from downstairs, the noise from the television droning on in the background.

"OKAY!" A shout who I presumed to be from Kaito came from the second floor, just below me. After managing to find out a notable amount of things about the computer I received, I gently closed it and made my way down to the dining room. The aroma of soup and noodles wafted to me, increasing my appetite by leaps and bounds.

I sat down hastily between Lyra and Akuma, a big bowl of flat noodles in soup before me along with several other delicious dishes in the middle of the table surrounded by everyone. "Help yourselves," said Hikari. And with that, I tucked in with everyone else, my gaze switching to the television screen ever so often, trying to focus on what the news reporter had to say from all the chatter from the others.

"It's 7.52pm here in Lumiere. The urgent search is currently underway for one convicted killer. Roughly 40-year-old Morrison Silvershade has apparently used smuggled in magic tools to escape Lumiere's Black Castle Correctional Facility. This meticulous prison break may seem like it's out of a movie- However, for nearby residents, the present danger is real. Here's Rouré's Giorgos Spiridon." The camera switched from the current news reporter to another one standing outside, who carried on with the subject.

My heart skipped a beat when I heard the shattering of glass, followed by a gasp. We all turned back to see Lana. Glass shards which were from the glass cup she held, as well as water, were strewn on the floor. Her eyes were wide open, beads of sweat visible on her forehead, the expression of shock and anger clouding over her face.

"Oh no, no, nonononono-" Sienna crouched down to pick up the broken glass shards, making sure not to cut herself on accident.

"What's happening?" Akuma asked, placing down her chopsticks.

"He's coming back for me," Lana whispered, her face a ghostly pale.

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