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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 07:16 PM
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"Auntie...where are you?"

Haru...?

"Auntie, it's...it's so cold. I'm scared, Auntie!"

Haru, please, where are you?

"I don't know, I just...no, no, they're coming again! Auntie!"

Haru!

Aki woke with a start, drenched in sweat. Looking around at her room, empty save for herself, all of that must have been a dream, a nightmare...but it felt so real. Was this similar to the Awakening? Was Haru speaking to her through the keyblade, somehow?

Rustle rustle.

Aki's drowsy eyes slowly panned over to her bedside table, where even with no flowing air, a bit of loose paper flapped defiantly. Shaking her head, she brought it over to the bed, giving it a studious look-over.

Nakato,

You want info on your niece? Can help you with that. One who captured her, old enemy of mine; calls herself 'The Collector'. Leads are scarce, cleans up after herself, but found something, dunno what.

Want to find out? Find Philip, should be in Traverse. Dark skin, green eyes, blonde, looks about to bolt 24/7. Got a lead, or so he says, but I've got other fish to fry. Want to contact me again, tell Philip what's up and I'll do what I can.

Ciao,

Cloaked Asshole


Aki blinked in surprise, looking over the letter one more time to make sure she hadn't misread anything. Presumably, 'Cloaked Asshole' was the stranger from yesterday, the one that had saved her life...and from the looks of it, they might have a hand in saving Haru's, too. But who was this Collector they spoke of? Would anyone else know about her, maybe even Xia?

Well, one thing was for sure, at least; the first order of business would be finding this 'Philip' character.

Meeeeerg.

Okay, the first order of business would be getting something to eat, then finding Philip.

Knock knock.

"Um...come in?"

With his usual smart suit, Weldon looked for all the world a waiter as he pushed the door open, nodding over to Aki as he raised up a small tray.

"Good day, Ms. Nakato," he greeted politely, dexterously closing the door with his foot. "I would say good morning but, well, morning isn't quite how it is on other worlds. Does the day greet you well?"

"Well enough?" Aki replied, warily eyeing Weldon's empty tray. "Why are you carrying a tray in here, Mister Mills?"

"Room service," he said, as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. "If you haven't noticed, we don't have a communal dining area here so this is essentially mandatory."

"Oh, but I couldn't-"

"Really? And Beryl seemed so eager to help with your meal."

Aki narrowed her eyes.

"This feels awfully like I'm being manipulated, Mister Mills."

"As if I would be so bold. Now, what would you like for your meal? Breakfast, shall we call it?"

"I suppose?"

"Then what would you like for breakfast, Ms. Nakato?"

Aki scratched her head.

"Do you...have any cereal?"

"Of course, ma'am. Any particular variety?"

"Something vaguely similar to bran flakes?"

"That can certainly be arranged, yes. Would you like a drink with your breakfast?"

"Um...a tea would be lovely. No milk, no sugar."

"Any particular type?"

"To be honest, if it's hot and tea-like, I will probably drink it."

"Very well, then. Would you like your tray set down on the bed, or...?"

Aki pursed her lips.

"Leave it on the floor please, somewhere out of the way."

Aki's brow furrowed as Weldon did as instructed, and as he came back up, hands no longer full, she shot him a sceptical look.

"Say, if this is room service, why are you bringing the tray in now? Do you not need that for carrying the food in?"

Weldon raised an eyebrow.

"Are you not eating with your friend?"

"Well, perhaps, but if that's her tray, you'll need to bring her food in too, yes? On a tray? That tray?"

"Oh, no, both of your meals will be brought in on a single tray."

"Wait, what? Why?"

"I think Beryl does it as a test of strength? If you want to know more, ask her; I don't interfere with the delivery side."

"So why...?"

Weldon paused at the door, winking back.

"What can I say? She's taken quite a shine to you, Ms. Nakato."

THUMP.

I guess saving someone's life can have that effect, yes, Aki thought, shaking her head. Not that it was all me, but I doubt she'll believe that. Now, I should catch up with Xia...

Dressed only in her bunny print pyjamas, Aki peered out of the still open door, looking left and right for any signs of her long-eared...friend.

Hm.

Come to think of it, I hope she doesn't find these pyjamas offensive. Wait, no, that wouldn't make sense; it's not like I find pyjamas with humans on them offensive.

"Xia?" Aki called out, already walking down the hotel corridor to Xia's door. "Are you awake?"

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 07:33 PM
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A muffled noise from the room, a few moments of silence. Then the rhythmic noise of walking. The door opened to a slightly drowsy rabbit girl wearing clothes that hadn't exactly fit her. The shirt was too small for instance. "Yeah." A yawn. "I'm up."

Xia rubbed her eyes with the hand that had been bloodied the night before, still covered in some blood, but healed. It seems she healed it before going to bed. Which was a good thing, because that would have gotten all over the sheets and other things that the manager would have been mad about.

"I forget, when did I change into this...?"

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 07:54 PM
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Aki's eyes briefly popped out of their sockets as she noticed the dried blood on Xia's hand, but promptly unpopped when she realised there was no actual wound, it just hadn't been cleaned up properly. Phew.

"I'm glad to see you're okay," Aki said genuinely, sending a warm smile. "I was quite worried when I saw you punch that wall but, well, I was reassured by the whole 'healing magic' thing."

Aki looked Xia up and down, raising an eyebrow at her pyjamas.

"Are you short of clothes, Xia?" she asked, hoping the question didn't come off as rude. "Because, well...you're sort of..."

Her eyes drifted to Xia's well-toned midriff, biting her lip in envy.

"Uh, not that there's anything wrong with that!" she said hastily, snapping her eyes back to Xia's face. "If it's comfortable for you, then you can wear whatever you like; that's what Haru used to say."

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 08:49 PM
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Xia watched for a moment as the human before her fumbled around for words and sentences. "I don't really own much for clothing... So... I guess I am short of clothing... Unlike you, I didn't have time to pack."

The Viera looked down at her clothing, somewhat confused as to what Aki was going on about. Was there really something wrong with her clothing? Where she cam from: A hume city in the desert, they would show their midriff, and even before that, when living on the edge of a volcano the other Viera would do something similar. "Is, something wrong with how I dress?"

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 09:32 PM
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Aki quickly averted her eyes as Xia asked the question.

"W-what? No, no, there's...it's fine, really!" Aki sputtered out, sounding about as genuine as a counterfeit watch. "It's just, uh, when you approach middle age, sometimes your body isn't quite in, um, tip-top shape, shall we say. Eventually you work through it, you say okay, it's fine, you're happy with your body, and then sometimes..."

Aki's eyes flashed back to Xia's midriff.

"Sometimes something reminds you that you used to care," she said softly. "In any case, it doesn't matter. Like I said, you can wear whatever you like, revealing or not; as long as it's to your tastes, that's all that matters."

Thankfully, before Aki was forced to come up with some transitional topic, Weldon popped his head out from the staff doorway.

"Oh, you're both up and about now, excellent," he said quickly. "Ms. Xia, what would you like for your first meal? We have cereal, eggs, toast, most things, really. We could even- what?"

Weldon briefly turned back into the staff room before popping right back out.

"Yes, and as I was saying, what would you like to drink?" he continued. "Would you also like tea, like Ms. Nakato?"

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 12 2016, 10:04 PM
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Xia blinked as she listened to Aki, about to respond when Weldon's head popped in through the door in the hallway. Listening for a few seconds she heard Beryl mumble something quietly but couldn't make out the words. Still her returned and Xia's train of thought was broken for a brief moment ans she thought about what to get.

"Oh, some eggs would be nice..." Though Xia didn't quite understand that chicken eggs would be rather small compared to the eggs she had eaten while hunting in the Ozmone Plains of Ivalice. "Oh, and water."

Xia turned her attention back to Aki. "By the way, after this, I'm going to start training you, this place is dangerous, as you found out yesterday."

It'll also help with you're body problems that you have... Though that wasn't said aloud, best keep that to herself or risk upsetting Aki.

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 13 2016, 07:23 PM
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Member No.: 89
Joined: 12-April 16





"Coming right up, Ms. Xia," Weldon replied, giving a quick nod before popping back into the staff area, closing the door behind him.

Unfortunate, really, as that left Aki to explain why training might not be first priority right now.

"Uh, about that..." Aki began awkwardly. "I sort of got a letter from that hooded person from before? The one who helped in the fighting? And apparently they've found a lead with a guy named Philip, so we can head after someone called The Collector, who apparently has my niece captive, I think?"

Aki scratched her head.

"To be honest, it was a lot of information to take in. To cut a long story short, while I want to increase my overall strength, I should probably follow this lead first before it disappears. I mean, there might not be another chance, right?"

CRASH!

"Uh, are you guys okay in there?" Aki called out.

"Yes, yes, everything's under control!" Weldon's muffled voice yelled back. "We should have it all ready in a minute! ...Huh?"

Mumble mumble.

"Two minutes?" Weldon corrected uncertainly. "In any case, please, don't worry about us! We'll be with you shortly, rest assured!"

Aki turned back to Xia, raising an eyebrow.

"It's certainly taking a while," she observed. "Not to mention I asked for bran flakes, which should be pretty simple...or maybe it's the eggs? That would make more sense, come to think of it."

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 13 2016, 07:38 PM
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Xia sighed internally. Right, Haru. It would be best to follow those leads as they came up. "Yeah, that's perfectly fine, we should follow the le-"

The crash interrupted her, this was the second time she was interrupted... Well, that's annoying. Still she peaked out the door to see what was going on. "You sure you're alright?" She turned back to Aki as she made the comment on the food.

"Bran flakes? Nevermind, yeah, eggs should take a while... Wait, how would they take only two minutes to cook?" Xia asked with a confused look, even the smaller creatures in her world would lay some pretty big eggs... Cockatrice, Dive talon... Those should produce some fairly large eggs... "Oh right... Different worlds, different species."

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 16 2016, 02:31 PM
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Group: Members
Posts: 154
Member No.: 89
Joined: 12-April 16





Aki nodded sagely.

"Yes, I'd imagine with the cooking time, the eggs around here would be a tad smaller. Come to think of it, actually, do you need more, then? If you were expecting a larger egg, I can't imagine a small one with a glass of water would be enough to satisfy..."

Aki's eyes darted back to the staff area, the sudden lack of noise only raising her suspicions. Still, Xia's question came first.

"Bran flakes are a kind of cereal, you usually have them with milk...I think they're made with wheat? They're healthy, anyway, and I've gotten used to them over the years. Maybe you should try a bite when it's-"

"Coming right up!"

With only the call as warning, Weldon zipped out into the main hallway, gesturing for his daughter to make her entrance; Beryl was only too happy to comply. Holding a tray packed with everything Aki and Xia ordered, Beryl held the weight aloft with only a single hand, balancing it so skilfully that not even a single piece of the breakfast rattled as she walked. On top of that, as Beryl marched on with the tray firmly in hand, Aki noticed that she had dressed up to match her father, her suit being slightly less tailored but just as robust as Weldon's.

Oh my gosh, she's even wearing a tiny little bowtie! Cute!

"Ms. Nakato?"

"Um, yes?" Aki replied, shaking herself out of the cuteness daze.

"You, uh...I mean..."

Beryl cleared her throat.

"Would you prefer to eat in your room, ma'am, or would Ms. Xia's be more acceptable?" she asked, imitating Weldon's tone and prompting the man himself to smile with pride.

Aki blinked, turning to Xia.

"I don't really mind?" she said uncertainly. "Though I believe the other tray is currently in my room. Xia, do you have a preference? Or...maybe you want to eat separately? I won't take offence if you do, really, so don't worry about that."

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 17 2016, 05:39 PM
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"I don't mind either way," Xia responded and shrugged. Honestly she didn't mind eating with Aki or alone, she had eaten alone for quite some time though... Well, other than the taverns in Rabanastre, but those had a different feel.

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 19 2016, 10:52 PM
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Member No.: 89
Joined: 12-April 16





Aki thought about it for a moment. On the one hand, she still didn't know Xia all that well in the grand scheme of things, and enjoying a bit of breakfast together might be as good an opportunity to fix that as any. On the other, not knowing her well might mean she really did prefer to eat alone, and was saying she didn't mind so as not to hurt Aki's feelings. Hm...

Well, only one way to find out.

"We'll eat in my room please, Beryl," Aki said politely. "But, uh, are you sure you're okay carrying all of that on your own? Would you like some help?"

Beryl shot her a withering look.

"That's...that's a no then, is it?"

A nod.

"Oookay then, I...suppose that's fine?" Aki said uncertainly. "In any case, the door is unlocked; if you would take the tray in now, Xia and I will follow suit. Thank you."

Aki glanced back to Weldon as Beryl entered her room, smiling wanly.

"Is she always...?"

"Almost always."

"Right, right. So...I'll see you later?"

"Of course, Ms. Nakato, and if there's anything else you need, please feel free to ask!"

Aki gave a short nod to show her acknowledgement, but she didn't suggest anything in particular as she returned to her room, beckoning for Xia to follow on.

Wait, did I pack my underwear away?

Aki took up the doorway as she peered into the room, finding that, to her relief, past Aki had helpfully not put her knickers on display for the world to see. Oh, and Beryl had rested the tray down on the floor, giving Aki a small surprise as legs popped out from underneath it, handily supporting its weight.

So they're like table-tray hybrids? Clever!

"This Xia's?"

The audio whiplash of Beryl's 'fancy' tone to her normal one was not particularly gentle, and from how quickly Beryl caught on, Aki's expression must have made that quite clear.

"I mean, uh...would this be Ms. Xia's tray?" Beryl asked again, even ending the question with a graceful wave to the earlier tray. After a quick nod from Aki, said tray was also put up opposite Aki's, soon covered in the somewhat meagre contents of Xia's breakfast.

"Will that be all, ma'am?"

The growling in her stomach made Aki incredibly tempted to say 'yes', but there was something to take care of first.

"Just one thing."

"Hm?"

"You don't have to put on a show for me, Beryl. If speaking casually makes you more comfortable, then go ahead; it's not like I'll be offended by it."

"You sure?"

"Positive."

Beryl's shoulders relaxed a little.

"Then...thanks. For real, though, d'ya need something?"

"I'm fine, thank you...Xia?"

Aki waited for Xia's reply, then nodded as it came in negative; as expected, really.

"Guess I'll get back to Dad, then," Beryl said, giving a quick nod before making her way to the door. "Oh, and, Aki?"

"Yes?"

"Are you staying in Traverse long?"

"I can't say, but I doubt I'll be here longer than a week."

"I...right."

Beryl smiled sadly.

"There'll always be room here. At least...if you wanna stay," she added. "I'd...we'd love to have you."

"Well as long as your father doesn't try and pin freebies on me while I'm not looking, I'd love to stay, too."

"Heh, I'll keep him under wraps."

"Then thank you, Beryl. See you in a bit!"

Aki gave a little wave as Beryl made her exit, but as she turned back around to face Xia, she gave a slight frown.

"Well that was...interesting."

She sat down to her tray, legs crossed as she sorted out her cereal.

"I can't say it's the first time someone's put me on a pedestal, but she's a little older than the usual starry-eyed kids I deal with. Honestly, I don't mind that much, I just- whoa!"

Aki pulled the jug back up as the milk she'd poured onto the bran flakes glowed with a soft golden aura.

"Some kind of special milk?" Aki wondered, tasting a small amount on her spoon. "Hm...it certainly doesn't taste dissimilar, but there's a kind of warmth as it goes down, like you're drinking liqueur."

Aki took another sip.

"It's really not bad at all," she admitted. "Would you like to try some, Xia?"

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 28 2016, 08:17 PM
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Posts: 2748
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Joined: 10-September 12





Xia looked at the bran flakes. Then shrugged. "I'm fine with just eggs." She smiled a bit and sat down. While she had been surprised by the trays growing feet, she hadn't let it show on her face much. It was interesting magic that they did in these worlds... So different from her own.

A small sigh as she began eating her eggs. "So, what is the plan? Where we need to go, if we're leaving?"

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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Soulwithlife
 Posted: Jul 30 2016, 11:55 AM
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Group: Members
Posts: 154
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Joined: 12-April 16





Aki gave a half-sigh as Xia got straight to business, but she supposed small talk could come later. Besides, she was the one who wanted to follow up on this lead ASAP; it wouldn't make an awful lot of sense to hold it up. Shrugging, Aki retrieved the note from earlier and passed it over, motioning for her to read it.

"It's more or less what I explained before, but with a bit more detail," Aki explained. "Although if I'm honest, not enough detail. This 'Philip' is supposedly in Traverse Town somewhere, but it doesn't give any clue where."

Aki returned to her bran flakes, slowing down her eating so she could savour the unusual milk.

"Still, I should think the café would be a good place to start, don't you think?" she continued, resting her spoon down. "It seems like somewhere people naturally gather, and if Philip isn't there, Sarah might know where we can find him."

Aki finished off her bran flakes, sighing in satisfaction.

"How are the eggs, by the way? Are they nice?" she asked finally, wiping her mouth on her sleeve. "I might have had some myself, but protein doesn't sit well with me in the morning...not that I'D have refused if they had been the only food available. I was quite famished."

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Millie Sentinal
 Posted: Jul 30 2016, 12:20 PM
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Sage

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Group: Global Moderator
Posts: 2748
Member No.: 16
Joined: 10-September 12





Xia swallowed what she had in her mouth as she read over the note. "Hmm... I don't really trust it... But it is the only lead we got." She looked it over again while lifting a forkful of egg to her mouth.

"But yeah, lets check the cafe, if he isn't there, check with the individuals in there..." She waited a few moments before actually putting the egg in her mouth and chewing.

A few seconds later Xia spoke up again. "Yeah, the eggs are good, vaguely different from what I'm used too, but good." She smiled at Aki.

--------------------
Millie Sentinal ()
Kantia Rose (Quiet shy girl, that can forge weapons out of the hearts of her allies.)
Sakuya Izayoi (The Perfect and Elegant Maid of the Scarlet Mansion.)
Exsila (Heartless of Alexis Sentinal, and controls a few Heartless.)
Jacob Signar
Xia
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