Trouble in Paradise
More explosions begin going off shaking the building. I finally catch up to where the fighting is seeing students and the teachers fighting for their lives, against an army of pirates. These pirates are viciously killing everyone in sight, leaving no survivors this time. I begin fighting my way through them constantly calling out to Ariya, but still getting no response. I even try summoning her to me, and still nothing.
Then everything suddenly shifts, and I appear in that familiar field from Ariya’s nightmares. There is a massive fight going on with pirates and pretty much everyone we know, plus a few other higher ups. For some reason I can't move. I try yelling out for them, but no one can hear my yells over the combat.
Our people begin winning taking out the pirates, with only a couple casualties. Suddenly, a bolt of bright blue lightning shoots across the field. A massive explosion goes off knocking everyone away and to the ground.
Appearing where the bolt struck the ground is the pirate that looks just like me. Everyone slowly begins to stand. This guy wastes no time, and starts shooting bolts of lightning every which direction, hitting anyone who gets in his path. It doesn't matter if it's one of his men or one of ours.
Everyone begins fighting back but its useless. Each attack, magical or otherwise he shrugs off. Each time he is hit by magic, the magical runes tattooed on his body begin to glow a bit more. After each person he defeats a golden mist seems to exit their body and flow towards him.
The whole time he is killing these people he is smiling and laughing. Then his gaze turns to where I am standing paralyzed. He smiles to me even his teeth have an electric blue glow to them.
Then with a with an energy filled crackling voice he says, "I'm coming for you, brother."
Suddenly, I jump awake gasping for air covered in sweat. My heart is racing and my body trembling with fear. I just sit there for a bit trying to calm down hearing the storm still going on outside. I look to my clock seeing its a little past three in the mornjng. I can feel there is no fear or really any emotions coming from Ariya so I figure she is still asleep.
Now, I can't seem to fall back asleep as I just continue to think about that dream. After about twenty minutes the power comes back on. My TV turns on showing me Ariya's room. She is asleep on her couch leaned up against Samuel with his arm around her also sleeping.
I feel a bit of jealousy come over me. "Yeah nothing for me to be jealous of."
I turn off her cameras, and decide to watch TV for a while knowing I will never fall asleep now. Now my mind can't stop thinking about them two together like that. I can't even concentrate on any show. I decide to head down to the cafeteria to see if I could get me something to eat.
When I get there, I notice all the instructors are sitting around a table eating and talking. They all see me and say good morning as I make my way over grabbing some food. Not really wanting to interrupt their conversation, I decide to sit at a table off by myself.
The female instructor that has been giving me a hard time stands and makes her way over to me. She sets her tray down asking, "Mind if I sit with you?"
I motion to the seat across from me, "Sure go ahead, not like I can tell you no right?"
She chuckles and sits down, "Well you can. I just wanted to see how you are doing?"
"Why do you care?" I say,
I take a bite of my fruit "And you think that worked? After what you did, I am just going to respect you now?"
She looks at me with uncertainty. "Why are you so defiant? It's like you are angry at the world. I figure any serf would love to be in your position. Being who you are, you can have any job you want. You can change your status, and build a legacy for your children and grandchildren."
"What makes you think I wanted this? I was just fine cleaning toilets and classrooms. Ever since I got bonded, it has been a constant struggle. I've been in constant fights with people saying I don't deserve this. And I’ve been dealing with all your stupid rules.
I would give this up in a heartbeat. But I promised Ariya I wouldn't and I would always be there for her." I instantly remember her lying on the couch with Samuel, thinking she would be better off with him than me. I finish my rant with "Now, I am not even sure if I can do that"
Suddenly I feel a bit of hurt coming from Ariya as she mentally says in my head, (Do you want to break our bond again? What did I do?)
The instructor is saying something to me but it was drown out by Ariya talking. I rub my face as I stand with a sigh realizing Ariya must of heard what I just said. (No, I don't want to break it.)
(Oh my god you are lying.)
Suddenly I appear in her room noticing Samuel is gone. Ariya walks up to me. "What did I do? What made you change your mind again?"
I can see her fighting back tears from filling her eyes. I sigh again, "Ariya it's not you, well not completely. I saw you sleeping with Samuel earlier."
She rolls her eyes, "Damn it Fabien, nothing happened. He was just keeping me company during the storm."
"Yeah about that, I also had another dream or vision and it scared me. I am starting to think; the best way for me to protect you and everyone else from getting hurt is to leave."
She scowls at me with disappointment, "I can't believe you are saying this. Have you ever thought about what I want? Fabien, I have been having these visions years, before we even got bonded. Whatever is going to happen is going to happen, whether we are bonded or not. I figured you would understand how these visions work by now."
"I just wa-" I begin to say then get interrupted by a knock at Ariya's door.
"What?" Ariya yells angerilly,
The door opens as Samantha peeks in "Its time for train-" She notice us standing in front of each other "Oh hi" then she quickly sees the mood we are in. She steps a bit towards us asking, "Is everything okay?"
Ariya turns wiping a tear off her cheek "We're fine, Fabien is leaving."
"Ariya I-" I begin to say,
"I said leave; I have to get dressed so we can go train."
I hesitantly leave making my way back to my room to change as well. We then meet back up at the training yard, Ariya gives me the silent treatment. We both really aren't into our training. At lunch I get my food first and sit down.
As I am eating Samuel comes up sitting across from me "Hey man, would you be opposed to me asking Ariya out?"
I set my fork down already losing my appetite, "Man you barely know her, and she just recently lost her ex. I don't think this is a good time for her."
He glances over at her in the food line. "Well, we have been spending some time together these past couple of days. I even spent the night with her last night." My fist clenches already wanting to hit him as he continues. "We have talked a lot and after getting to know her, I kind of like her."
I see her walking towards us. She sees us talking and me looking at her with a slight irritated look. She begins making her way over to us.
I look back to him "I still think it is too early for her."
"But you wouldn't care if maybe down the road I asked her out?" He asks,
Someone walks up stopping Ariya asking her to sit with them. She glances to me then agrees following them.
I sigh "Listen man, I am just her guardian I have no say so over who she dates. All I can say is, if you hurt her, I hurt you."
He grins grabbing his tray again and stands, "I understand, thank you."
He walks off to sit with Ariya and the people she is with. I just rub my eyes with a bit of frustration pushing my tray away.
Now Stephanie walks up to me looking a bit nervous as she sits down, "Can I eat with you?"
"I kind of lost my appetite but sure." I say as lean back and cross my arms.
She immediately notices the mood I’m in. "Oh are you okay?"
"Yeah I am fine, just a little tired. I didn't get much sleep last night because of the storm." I say as I rub my face.
"Yeah, you seemed really out of it today. You seemed to have a lot on your mind."
"That obvious huh"
She smiles, "Just a bit. I heard what happened to you in the showers. That kinds of sucks them doing that when you were too tired to defend yourself."
I glance over seeing Ariya laughing with Samuel about something he said. Then she looks to me seeing me looking at her. She just turns her attention back to him smiling.
We continue talking till lunch ends and start making our way back to the training grounds. Stephanie rushes off to talk to one of our instructors. They don't seem too pleased about something.
Then I hear Ariya giggle in front of me. I look forward seeing Samuel leaned over whispering something in her ear flirting with her. She laughs some more and smacks him, pretty much flirting back. He sees me looking and grins giving me a thumbs up behind her back.
(I am guessing that's just friendly talking huh. You seem to be enjoying yourself a little too much with him now.) I say,
She glances back to me (Well I have to pretend I am single right? Also why do you care, you want to leave me anyways.)
(You know I didn't mean that?)
(And you know, I know when you are lying.) She says as she looks back at Samuel with a smile.
(Whatever, I guess you already moved on from your dead boyfriend too.) I say,
(That excuse can only work for so long.)
(It's been two days... You know what, never mind. Just do whatever you want to do.) I say as I walk off finding another group of people to practice with.
At the end of the day, my last sparring opponent is Chiara. The fight between us was a joke as she quickly defeats me, because my heart just wasn't in it. I am not even sure if I used any mana to protect myself from her attacks. She helps me up from the ground looking at me with slight confusion.
"What's wrong with you? Were you even trying?" She asks,
I brush off my hands and shorts.. "Yeah I don't know I am just not feeling well I guess."
She narrows her eyes at me. "Guardians don't get sick, so what’s wrong?"
Getting slightly irritated by her questions, "You know what, I don't really want to talk about it with you."
She gasps at my sudden rudeness.. "Oh okay, I am sorry for asking."
I just turn walking off to the showers. As I am in there, enjoying the heat of the shower cascading over me. I am so deep in thought trying to calm down, I don't notice Samuel come up taking the shower beside mine.
He begins rubbing soap on his body as he turns to me. "I think I am getting through to her."
I look up to him now noticing he is there, "What?"
He smiles, "Ariya, I think she is starting to like me."
"Good for you" I say as I turn away. Hoping he is done talking to me I just begin rubbing soap on my arms and chest.
Unfortunately, he isn’t done. “So help me out, tell me some stuff about her. What does she like?"
"I don't know man, she is a girl what do they like?"
He is too focused on getting information, he doesn’t notice my mood. "Come on Fabien you have to know something about her. Does she like a certain food or maybe a specific type of flower?"
I sigh turning to face him extremely irritated by his questions. "Why the fuck would I know? Quit fucking asking me this shit!" I almost shout at him,
I turn off the water and storm off back to the locker room. He just looks at me dumbfounded as do everyone else hearing me.
As I am drying off Donovan comes up to me "What's going on, why did you yell at Samuel?"
I toss the towel to the floor and glare at him. "He keeps asking me all these fucking questions about Ariya, like I would know. It's annoying the shit out of me."
I reach down grabbing my clothes and begin to put them on.
More people start walking in and take the lockers next to us which quickly stops our conversation. We finish changing and leave meeting up with Samantha as we are walking.
Donovan leans over to her quietly saying, "You need to talk to Fabien about his feelings towards Ariya."
She looks to Donovan slightly confused "Don't tell me you just now noticed them?"
"What you knew?" He asks, caught off guard by her.
"Of course they suck at hiding them." She looks to me asking "Why did something happen?"
"He went off on Samuel for asking questions about Ariya in front of everyone" Donovan answers for me,
She rolls her eyes looking back to me, "Fabien you really need to control yourself. I know you both have feelings for each other, but as long as you two are bonded you can never act on them... You two haven't have you?"
I shake my head, "No, of course not."
"Good, but you have to realize guys will like her and want to get close with her. You are just going to have to accept it." She says,
I rub the back of my head, "Yeah I know"
"It will be very hard for you, believe me I know" Donovan and her glance to each other.
"Just think about it"
We get to my room and I kick off my shoes then just fall on my bed exhausted. After about ten minutes there is a knock at my door and Ariya just walks in.
I sit up looking at her unsure why she’s here. "Hey"
She sits on the bed next to me "I told him I’m not ready for a relationship"
I glance up to the cameras that have turned on (Cameras) I mentally say, then I say out loud "That is good, since you still aren't over the death of Michael."
She begins to glance up at the cameras then stops. "I'm not sure if I will ever be able to be in a real relationship again."
I place my hand on her shoulder acting concerned. "Don't worry I am sure you will. Someone much better than Michael will eventually come along. Maybe even better looking as well."
She grins "I don't know, he was pretty sexy. You should have seen him without a shirt, and the stuff he could do with his tongue, Mmm."
She moans out and I push her knowing she is making fun of me for the time I said that about Ashley. "Okay, I don't need to know about that. Go back to your room."
She laughs standing back up glancing at the cameras. (I still really hate these cameras. And you need to stop being so damn jealous. You have nothing to worry about with Samuel, I love you Fabien.)
(I wasn- ah forget it. Yeah I was a little bit.)
(It's okay, I don't blame you. I am hot, I can't help all the guys want me.)
I chuckle and stand with her as we walk to the door, (Well I am not sharing)
The next few days go by and it's Friday. Ariya kept up her charade with Samuel, but keeping him at a distance.
One time, I’m resting from a long run drinking some water. Stephanie runs up next to me. She grabs a bottle of water and looks down at me as she opens it. "You know there are quite a few rumors going around about you?"
I look up at her with a smirk. "Oh no, which one did you hear?"
She looks around then quietly says, "I heard you had an affair with the princess after saving her on the airship."
I choke on my water and look around. I notice a couple of guardians actually heard her comments with their improved hearing. Even Chiara heard it, as she looks to Aislin to make sure she didn't hear it. And by her expression, she doesn't seem to know why people are chuckling.
I chuckle, "As much as I wish that rumor was true, no I didn't sleep with her, or Chiara. I know that is also a rumor going around about me."
Ariya rolls her eyes taking another drink of her water going back to talking to Samantha and Samuel.
Chiara looks to me with shock having heard this one for the first time. "Are you serious? Is that really a rumor?"
I nod to her and she blushes a little looking away. I grin thinking I would never see that from her. Then Stephanie says, "Well the other one is- " She gets quiet again saying "You might be gay?"
People start chuckling. I turn glaring at Ariya, who can't bring herself to look at me as she chuckles as well.
"I wonder who started that rumor?" I say,
"So you're not?" She asks as she starts to smile,
I scoff, "Hell no, I love females. I love everything about females." I say as Ariya rolls her eyes again and Stephanie's smile widens.
Then she gets a reluctant look glancing over at some of the trainers. "Well, that is good, I was hoping maybe this Sunday if you weren't busy you wouldn't mind going on a double date with me and my sister."
Ariya looks back at me to see how I answer. I scratch the back of my head trying to think of something to say. Then I let out a nervous chuckle, "Um, I don't know, isn't it against the rules?"
Donovan overhearing the conversation says, "Not for you two it isn't"
Ariya and I both look to him, as he just stares back at me telling me to go for it with his eyes.
Stephanie then grabs my hand and pretty much begins to beg. "Please, it's with my sister's boyfriend, he is part of the Mage Police. She likes to rub it in my face how much better she is than me. If I show up with you, she can't say anything."
I rub the back of my head looking at her seeing her eyes actually beginning to tear up a bit.
Samantha then says, "Come on Fabien, it's just a date."
Not sure what to really say, I hesitate then I hear Ariya say in my head, (Are you seriously thinking about it?)
Stephanie begs once more, "Please just one date?"
Then I see a tear roll down her cheek and I realize how important this must be to her. I close my eyes with a sigh knowing I am going to regret this. "Okay, I will do it."
She gets excited lunging forward hugging me and kissing me on the cheek before running off thanking me.
(You're an asshole, and a hypocrite) Ariya says then turns walking off angrily.
(I am sorry, It's not even a real date. It is just dinner.)
(It is to her, god you are so stupid.) She says,
Samantha runs up to me, "Don't worry I will talk to her." Then she runs off to catch up with Ariya.
I watch her run off to Ariya as I mentally say to Ariya, (She was crying and everyone was watching. What did you want me to do?)
(So every time a girl cries, you have to do whatever she says.)
I sigh realizing no matter what I will say will fix things. (Fine, I will tell her I can't go) I say, knowing I didn’t want to do it in the first place.
Donovan walks up placing his hand on my shoulder. "Don't worry man; I think you did the right thing."
"It doesn't feel like it"
"It's going to be okay"
The day ends up going by with Ariya pretty much ignoring me now. I am sitting on the edge of my bed after I shower and decide to check on her. I turn on her cameras seeing her griping at Samantha who is trying to calm her down.
She sees the cameras turn on and yells, "Turn them off now!"
I quickly shut them off tossing the remote back on the bed then lie back. After a few minutes of lying there Ariya finally says something to me, (Do you even know why I am so mad?)
I just keep my arm over my eyes as I talk back to her, (Because I am going on this date with her?)
(So it's a date now?)
I growl to myself (You know what I mean. Why don't you let me know what I did wrong, and maybe I can fix this.)
(The reason I am so mad is, you gave me so much crap about Samuel and all we were doing is talking.) She says,
(There was a lot of flirting between both of you.)
(Shut up, but now you are going on a date with Stephanie. Do you understand what I am saying?) She says,
(Yeah I do. But Ariya I promise you this means nothing to me. I love you, not her. You're the one I want to marry, you're the one I want to have kids with.)
She hesitates, (Did you say you want to marry me? You're actually thinking about marrying me?) She says and I can immediately feel amusement coming from her.
(Yeah, I mean, eventually. Look, I am sorry for getting so upset about Samuel. I think this place is just getting to me already. I miss you and just want to hold you again.)
She chuckles, (You sound like such a girl.)
I laugh, (Shut up, wow see if I share my feelings with you ever again. But don't worry after tomorrow, the date or whatever this is will be over, and we can go back to normal.)
(Okay, but she better not try anything with you. I will knock her teeth out so she will never want to smile again.)
I laugh, (God you are so hot)
The next day goes by and its the day of the date. I am getting ready in my room and I see the cameras turn on. I smile turning towards the camera.
"How do I look?" Iask,
(You look really good. You know we haven't officially gone on any dates without other people around.) She mentally responds,
(Just give me the word and I will call this off. Then we can go do whatever you want.)
(Okay, word.) She immediately responds,
(Really?) I ask, getting caught off guard.
She chuckles, (No we will do that when you get back.)
Suddenly, there is a knock at my door. I walk over opening it seeing Stephanie standing there dressed beautifully. She is wearing a long purple dinner dress with her hair put up nicely wearing black high heels.
"Wow you look nice." I say with a smile,
She gives me a displeased look, "Just nice?"
I chuckle "Sorry beautiful. You look beautiful."
(Tramp) Ariya’s mental voice cuts in.
Stephanie smiles and hooks her arm around mine leading me away. I can feel the jealousy and other emotions rising in Ariya.
(Calm down, I love you.) I mentally say to her.
We head down to a carriage waiting for us. We both get in and it starts to drive us to the restaurant.
"Do you mind if we not mention that you use to be a serf?" She asks as the carriage takes off.
(Oh I am so kicking her ass.) Ariya says letting me know she’s still watching this date.
I smile to Stephanie. "Sure, I wasn't going too anyways." Then I say to Ariya (Why are you still watching? It's just going to make you more upset.)
(Because I don't trust this girl)
(It will be okay. Go hang out with the princess or Samantha.)
(Fine) She says as she stops talking to me.
Stephanie introduces me to her family even though they recognize me from the TV. They all seem like nice and decent people. I have to lie a bit on how I ended up becoming the Savant. They start asking me a bit about my family and I lie just using what I learned about Ariya's family.
It all seems to be going well, till the war between sisters starts. It first started with her sister telling some great things her boyfriend did . Then hey both began trying to one up each other with who is doing more with their lives. The boyfriend and I just sit there silently and watch. It begins to get pretty heated and people in the restaurant begin looking over at the table.
The boyfriend eventually cuts in, "Darling, it doesn't matter who does what. All that matter is our love for each other and where we end up down the road."
He smiles to me and Stephanie then blurts out, "We are getting married!"
My eyes widen as I look to her in shock. She takes my hand looking into my eyes with a pleading look. Everyone else seems to be as stunned about this as I am.
The father sets his fork down trying to stay calm, "Fabien is that true?"
I hesitate unsure what to really say. She squeezes my hand giving me another look begging me to say something.
I force out a smile "Honey, I thought we were going to wait till after dinner?"
She smiles at me then looks back at her family. "I am sorry if I ruined the surprise. I just couldn't hold it in any longer."
The mother looks at us with uncertainty, "Isn't this a little sudden? How long have you two known each other?"
I look back to Samantha letting her answer this. "A year and a half. I know it's early but we love each other." She says,
She leans forward kissing me on the lips. I’m still stunned by the shock of it all, I don’t even react.
The father clears his throat to bring my attention back to him. "Fabien, you know it is proper etiquette to ask the father for permission to marry the daughter."
I look back at him apologetically, "Oh, yeah I am so sorry. It just happened suddenly. I totally understand if you are against it."
He looks to his wife . "Now, I didn't say that. I just wish you would have asked me before I said -" He looks back to his daughter with a smile "You may marry my daughter"
Again, I am left speechless as everyone begins talking about the marriage. Stephanie keeps adding lie on top of lie about our relationship and how I proposed to her. Its so hard to keep up with them all. Then they actually begin setting a date for the marriage and I think everything is getting way out of hand.
I let go and turn to her "What the hell were you thinking tonight?"
She looks to me startled by my upset attitude, "What?"
"You know, we really aren't engaged or even dating right?"
She smiles her innocent smile. "I am sorry I got a little carried away"
I look off in the distance seeing her parents driving away. I scoff, "A little? How are you going to fix this? We..." I shake my head "I mean you, have to tell them you lied."
She grabs my hand again. "Can't it wait just a little while?" She pleads,
I growl in frustration "Your mom is already looking at dresses to buy for the wedding. A wedding that isn't going to happen."
"I am sorry"
We continue discussing this all the way back. When I get back to my room it is after eleven, so I check in on Ariya. She is already asleep in her bed. Since she’s asleep, I just take a shower then go to sleep myself.
The next morning I get woke up by Ariya pushing on my shoulder. "Fabien, wake up."
Still half asleep I crack one of my eyes open and look at her. She has a troubled look on her face "What's wrong?" I ask,
"I think we should quit and do something else?" She says,
I sit up stretching a bit, then rub some sleep crust from my eyes. "Why did something happen? Was it because of last night?"
"I don't like it here with all their rules. Maybe we can be guards or something somewhere else?"
"Have you talked to Daniel? We should really discuss this with him first."
She looks around nervously biting her pinky nail. I pull her hand away from her mouth. "We have been here only a short time and it already caused us to fight." She says,
(We should really discuss this away from the cameras) And motion to the camera with my head.
She looks up to one of them and growls "These I hate most of all, fucking cameras!"
She quickly storms out of my room slamming the door. Wow this place is really making her crazy.
(Screw you) she shouts in my head,
I sigh and get up taking a shower then get dressed. We are starting a new class today called 'Combat and Warfare Tactics'. I head down to the class already expecting her to be there. When I walk in I don't see her anywhere, so I just take a seat waiting for her to show up. The class begins and she eventually shows up late, still looking upset.
She takes the seat next to me and saying quietly to me, "Thanks for waiting for me."
I just look up at the instructor (Sorry, are you okay? You seem even more upset than you usually are.)
(So now I am mad all the time?) She says back,
(I didn't mean it like that)
(Whatever) She says, I sigh and lean forward on my elbow rubbing my eyes with my hand.
(How was the date?) She eventually asks after a brief moment of silence.
(I really don't want to talk about it.) I say, knowing it will probably make things worse.
(Because you are upset, and it will probably make you even more angry.)
She looks to me. "Why, what happened?" she says out loud this time.
Everyone glances back at us and the instructor silences us. (I will tell you after class) I mentally say to her as I apologize to them.
She growls silently to herself looking back forward. I can feel her frustration rising. She then starts bouncing her leg anxiously waiting. She keeps glancing over at me giving me accusing looks.
(Did you kiss her?) She eventually asks,
(We will talk after class is over. I will tell-)
(No, I am not leaving you alone till you-) She says as the grabs my face to make me look at her. (-talk to me.)
I pull her hand away and scowl at her. (Damn it woman, you are driving me crazy. I will tell you after class)
She jumps to her feet and grabs my hand pulling me with her "Follow me, now!"
People in the class chuckle and the instructor asks, "Is everything alright?"
As I follow her out as I look to him "Not sure yet. If I'm not back in ten minutes send a life mage."
She drags me out of the class shutting the door. Then she turns to me crossing her arms "Class is over now tell me."
I sigh and glance past her to the door. "Alright. It wasn't a double date, she just wanted to show me off to her family. Then her and her sister got into some stupid argument on whose boyfriend was the better boyfriend. Then something happened where she kind of made her family believe we were engaged."
She just stares at me for a long few seconds of awkward silence. "And... what did you say?"
I shake me head and shrug, "Nothing, I was too shocked by the situation to say anything. After we left, I told her she does needed to fix this, because we really aren't together."
"Well apparently neither are we." She says as she looks down the hallway,
"What?" I ask unsure what she means by that.
She looks around waving her hands "This damn place with all it's stupid rules! It makes us to where we can't be together. It's why I want to leave." I reach for her hand and she brushes it away "Just go back to class. I want to be alone"
"Ariya come on"
She just ignores me and walks off.