Rise and Brine
“Five more minutes...” he murmured.
Harry smiled. It felt like the morning hours deepened their voices just to remind him of how much he loved Harris.
“Wake up, bobo, we have work today,” Harry said cheerfully.
Sliding out of bed, he made a hand gesture, making light blue wisps of energy to trail after his hands. Once he had created a considerable amount of rbbons, he directed them towards the closet. They flew in through the sliding doors and began wokring on something inside it.
Harry headed to the bathroom while the energy ribbons took care of his uniform. Harris lowered the blanket from his face, peering at Harry’s broad back disappearing into the bathroom. Slowly, he dragged himself out of bed as well and stretched.
It was clear why the two were so attracted to one another. Harris was the taller of the two, at close to sev feet tall and packed with muscle; evidently a very experienced, hard working warrior.
Harry, on the other hand, was leaner and just a little bit shorter. His black framed glasses and quiet demeanor gave him an aura of passive power. He was an invaluable member of the Rosscova Royal Alchemists Society after all.
Harris’ hair was a dark shade of burgundy red and Harry’s was jet black. They both were stunningly gorgeous, with fine jawlines and eyes that could easily win anyone over. It wasn’t uncommon for women and men alike to cry over the fact that they were out of their league.
“Harry, you done in there?”
“Give me a minute! The toothpaste is levitating again!”
Harris sat down on the edge of the bed and chuckled to himself. He ran a hand through his silky locks, untangling part of it. Picking up his phone, he noticed a message from Kresha, their best friend.
Kresha: hey, when do u guys get out of work today?
Harris was mildly surprised, since Kresha wasn’t really much of a texter.
Harris: Around 6pm, why?
Kresha: meet me at Ivory Cafe, 6:30
Huh. This is unusual.
Harry came out, towel around his waist, and put his glasses back on. He the fog on them vanish with a snap of his fingers. Flicking his wrist again, he summoned the blue wisps of energy back from the closet and made them dissipate back into the air. When he had done that, he caught Harris staring at him, particularly, his chest. Smirking, he deliberately turned around towards the closet, teasingly tensing his shoulder muscles as he did.
Harris felt his cheeks warm and hastily looked away.
“I’m going to the bathroom,” he excused himself with a hint of timidity.
Harry laughed playfully and slid the closet door open. Maroon, azure and silver spider silk shimmered in the sunlight as if to greet him. He took out the hanger and changed into the regal alchemist’s tunic and trousers, finishing off with the maroon lab coat. On the back of it was the national emblem of Rosscova: two owls hovering back to back in combat ready positions, the one on the left holding a shield and the other holding a sword.
“Harry! Where’s the toothpaste?” Harris popped his head out from the bathroom and asked.
“Oh uh... About that... It sort of uh, imploded ten minutes ago,” Harry answered sheepishly.
Harris looked at Harry, unamused and looking like he wanted to smack his own face. He sighed and just looked at Harry.
Harry did another set of gestures, summoning more blue energy ribbons from the air. He picked up an empty glass and manipulated the wisps to fly off to the kitchen. Theyy came back a moment later, swollen with water, salt and other ingredients for a makeshift toothpaste. Harry then directed the wisps to dump their contents into the glass and magically fused them together into a salty solution. Handing it over to Harris, Harry said, “This should do until we get more toothpaste.”
“Big brain, bimbom,” Harris grinned.
Harry had relinquished the keys to the rover, opting to use public transport for that day. The alchemy centre wasn’t too far, it was just two dragon stops away.
The Alchemy Centre was already packed with employees of all different species. Scientists, alchemists and magic users walked around, each with an important task. A pixie was making rounds serving tea and coffee to those who wanted it.
“Mornin' sir!” his assistant Neula chirruped. She was a white horned demon, and the most cheerful thing Harry had ever seen.
“Good to see you’re feeling better, Neula,” he said, patting her head as he always did.
Not much time was wasted and Harry's team was given their new research objective: finding out the exact composition of Hydra scales from the recent attack in the north. Finding a way to replicate the scale would be a breakthrough in defence against leviathan attacks in the future.
Meanwhile, on the outskirts of the city, Harris pulled into the parking lot of the Rosscova Institute of National Defence. The entire establishment was on an elevated plain that gave way to a cliff towards the west and overlooked a large stretch of Rosscova’s capital, Yurika. To the east and north lay magnificent mountains of impressive height while the south sloped down to meet the level ground that ultimately led back to the city.
Rosscova was one among some of the most diverse and liberal countries in the world. Sentient beings of all species coexisted harmoniously in the fairly developed nation. Many owed the country’s blooming prosperity to the queen. After all, it was her initiative to combine modern technology with the ancient arts of magic to make Rosscova the powerful country it was.
Eventually, the day went by. It was soon time to close down. Harris was still talking to a student when the final bell rang.
“Alright, Sohu, I’ll sign you up for gear replacement. But please be more careful with the sword, the sides aren’t as strong as the sharp edge,” he told her.
“It won’t happen again, sir!” Sohu said, saluting.
Harris dismissed her with a nod, letting her join her classmates out in the hall to go home. Young Sohu unfurled her angelic wings and packed up her stuff to go. Harris texted Harry to let him know what Kresha said.
Harris: Kresha asked us to meet her at the Ivory cafe at 6:30, come home quick
Harry: Sure thing, see you soon bobo
He chuckled. Harris loved their silly little nicknames. Bimbom & Bobo sounded much more fun than Harris & Harry. Not to mention less confusing. B̶o̶b̶o̶ Harris was punctual as usual and was quick to get back home. Harry had already changed into a comfortable set of jeans and a shirt when he arrived.
"We have another twenty minutes, hurry up," Harry nudged.