“As Eden continues to mourn for the lives lost in this horrendous attack on Gaia’s budding civilization, we look on with hope that in times of trouble, heroes will rise up to protect the weak and vulnerable. Eden found these heroes in an unlikely group of young women and men, who risked their lives to protect the city from being overrun by the exiles. Video footage showing the group exhibit phenomenal abilities, has gone viral and started whispers among citizens who know of an age-old legend. The legend of the spectral warriors. Councilor Mason has however encouraged citizens to be cautious of what they say, as he stressed the importance of verifying the videos and investigating these brave citizens, further. The exiles were able to breach the city by drilling…”
Clieo muted the holographic system in Maggy’s living quarters and turned to Maggy and Kaya.
“Well… I guess we are famous now.” She said with a smile.
“I really don’t know how I feel about that. I don’t like the attention or the unrealistic expectations they are placing on us. I mean… we don’t even know how our powers work or their limits. We haven’t been trained.” Maggy lamented.
“Speaking of training, I sure hope Hope’s making some headway, finding that man.”
“There’s just… too many unanswered questions.” Maggy stated as she looked at Clieo and sighed.
“Sorry Clieo but… I don’t feel like much of a hero. This city was just fine before we got here. Since we did, bad things have been happening. Maybe we are the vill… Ouch!”
Clieo had gotten up and stepped on Maggy’s foot.
“Don’t talk like that. This city was founded on secrets and lies. Sometimes the truth can be earth shattering. It exposes ugly ghosts.”
“We don’t know that yet, Clieo. For all we know, Alexa could be lying.” Maggy argued.
Clieo looked at her.
“Did she look like she was lying to you, Maggy?”
Maggy sighed and plopped down on a long sofa.
“Where do we start from?” She asked softly.
There was a knock on the entrance to her quarters. Maggy, Kaya, and Clieo cautiously walked over to the entrance.
Maggy and Clieo stayed on one side, while Kaya held her position on the other side.
“Who is it?” Maggy asked.
“Duran. Vice-captain of the guard of Eden.” Came the deep voice.
Maggy hit the button to the side of the door and the metal door slid open with a hiss of air. Standing on the other side was the soldier who’d fought Hope during his test run in the arena. He looked worse for wear and had a bandage wrapped around his head. Another one held his left arm suspended and wrapped around his shoulder as well.
“May I come in?” He asked.
“Um… sure.” Maggy ushered Duran in.
When he’d stepped inside, she hit the button once more and the hatch door closed.
“Would you like… a glass of water?”
Duran shook his head and waved the offer away.
“I won’t be staying long. I have come here to give you three your enrollment letters.”
“Enrollment? Into what?” Kaya asked.
“The Guard of Eden. By order of the Captain of the Guard, himself.”
“He can’t do that.” Kaya said firmly. “Can he?”
Duran closed his eyes and sighed.
“You three have proven yourselves in battle and… your powers can help strengthen the city’s defenses against future attacks. You are needed. Besides, you’ll need training to improve your combat skills. The captain will be your personal instructor. But for pressing matters, he would have delivered this himself.”
It was then that the girls noticed Duran was carrying three holographic pads with him. He placed all three on Maggy’s kitchen counter.
“What happens to our current designations? I and Kaya are Explorers in training. Clieo is a medic.” Maggy glared at Duran.
“It continues. Listen… there’s a lot of talk about you guys being… spectral warriors. I don’t know if it is true. All I know is I’ve been Hope’s instructor for a month and he’s pretty special. The way he fights… makes me believe that one day, we just might be able to hold our own against the Seraph. If you guys are the same…”
Duran trailed off and looked at the girls.
“Make no mistake that these documents are mandates. If left unsigned, you will go to prison for refusing a military authority’s orders. However, I don’t want you to come in begrudgingly. If you are not committed, you will die. Yet… if you are what they say you are, don’t you already have enough reasons to be committed? Would you not aspire to something… more?”
“Goddammit!!!!” Maggy yelled.
She looked at Duran.
“We can’t run away from this can we?”
Duran shook his head.
“At some point, we’ll have to come face to face with the consequences of our decisions and our actions, or lack thereof.”
Maggy paced around for a bit before looking at the other girls. Kaya nodded reassuringly.
“You asked where we should start from. I think we should start with this, Maggy. We are preeeeeetty under prepared as it is.”
Maggy laughed and looked at Clieo, who nodded her head. Maggy nodded hers as well.
“Fine, sir. We’ll accept this on one condition. We won’t be restricted from seeing Commander Glyn and his lieutenant.”
“Both men are highly trained military officers, miss Sapphiron. They have also both asked to become members of the guard and will also assist in your training.”
Maggy smiled and signed the second holographic pad. Kaya signed hers soon after, and Duran picked up all three pads.
He walked over to the door and hit the control button, prompting the door to slide open once more.
“Welcome to the Guard of Eden, ladies. Your training starts bright and early tomorrow. 6am.”
“Yes, sir.” All three girls responded in unison.
Duran nodded and stepped out, the hatch door closing behind him.