The last two days were... interesting. If the festival was an example of how carefree and relaxed everyone could be, the last two days were an example of how tense everyone could be. For Aeira, it didn’t matter. She was more annoyed than scared by the attack. She barelu got to have fun that day. If it wasn’t angry people in the festival, it was angry people from outside shooting wverybody. She wondered if everyone in the mob was dead. Probably.
As much as the attack didn’t faze her, other things did. She hadn’t slept at all in the past two days, and she wasn’t planning to. Just getting in her bed made her feel incredibly unsafe. It was a feeling of impending doom, and one that only went away when she occupied herself with other things, as unhealthy as they were for her. She hadn’t gone outside the house either. She had no energy. Maybe it had to do with the fact that she didn’t sleep at all? ‘Whatever,’
she thought. She opened the door to her room as quietly as she could. Walking through the kitchen, she tried not to make a sound, but the creaking floorboards had other plans. “Going somewhere?”
A voice with a hint of surprise asked. Aeira turned around towards the source, facing her mother. Rui tilted her head. “Are those... my clothes?”
She asked, even more surprised than before. "Uh..."
Aeira looked down at her clothes, "The jeans are mine?"
She replied sheepishly. She couldn’t lie about the sweater she was wearing. It was black (Rui’s favorite color) and it was too big for her. Her shoes fit her, but again they were a color she normally wouldn’t wear. “Nevermind,”
Rui laughed, “Where are you headed, then?”
Aeira was visibly caught off guard by the question. Following a series of incoherent babbling and stuttering, she found an answer. "I’m meeting up, with... a friend."
Rui raised an eyebrow. “Really?” ‘No,’
she thought. "Yeah!"
She said. “No contacts?” "Nope!" “Self-defense?”
Aeira checked her pockets. The right held her knife rather than it being in her hair, while the left had her phone. "Yup!" “Hm.”
Rui began thinking. Aeira started becoming worried. She looked around the room nervously, waiting for a response. Realistically, Rui wouldn’t care what she did, but she would likely be more opposed to the idea of Aeira leaving the house now. Her own fear of Aeira getting hurt trumped Aeira’s confidence in not getting hurt. Fatally. She started leaning towards the door, waiting for her opportunity to bolt out. “Okay.”
Rui decided, walking away to her room. “Don’t die.” "I won’t!"
Aeira would be lying if she wasn’t surprised by what Rui said. Maybe she was confident in the fact that Aeira wouldn’t get hurt after all? It would make sense. She was a trouble magnet, and no matter what injuries she got she would always recover and go back for more. It was an unhealthy trait of hers, she knew. But it hadn’t come back to bite her in the ass, so it can’t hurt to keep it.
She was moving from rooftop to rooftop, dropping down to a windowsill to climb onto the next roof when she needed. This reminded her of when she did this everyday, hunting for her targets. She loved that feeling, especially when she fought them. ‘Maybe I’ll ask Rui if I could start again today,’
Before she had time to think about how that conversation would go, she heard something. Or someone. She turned around to see a woman. A black dress that barred her shoulders, red gloves with a skull woven into them, and red tattoos on her shoulders were the first things Aeira noticed about her. The second was the umbrella, but she couldn’t see enough of it to truly describe it. She was smiling. "...Hi?"
Aeira said, hoping to prompt a response out of the mysterious woman in front of her. When the woman's face did not change, Aeira began walking towards the end of the rooftop. She didn’t want people to see two randoms on their roof. However, she was stopped by a small knife whizzing right past her ear. She saw it fly onto the next roof. At first, she didn't move. She slowly began to turn around, a look of extreme annoyance on her face. "What?"
The woman only smiled again.
Walking up to her, Aeira began to notice the clear height difference between the two. Despite Aeira barely being 5’6”, the black-haired woman’s head seemed to only come up to her chest. It was a rare occurrence for her to need to look down on someone, and even rarer for the person shorter than her to appear like a fully grown woman. Despite Aeira’s slow walk towards her, the other still had the same carefree grin on her face.
Aeira noticed the distance between the two and stopped. She began to run, but then opted to do a sideways kick, aiming for the woman in black’s head. The woman in black turned the canopy of her umbrella towards Aeira’s foot, using it as a shield. Aeira hesitated from the unexpected pain of her foot clashing against the umbrella. Noticing the opportunity, the woman in black spun her body around and swept Aeira’s other leg from beneath her. Aeira kept herself from falling on her back by turning and landing on her hand instead, using them to flip herself onto her feet. The woman had a puzzled look on her face, one that screamed ‘I know you can do better.’
It was a bad kick, one that was advertised and had no acrobatics implemented into it, unlike her usual attacks. Her ‘let me see if you’re actually good’ kick resulted in her being put into a situation where the woman in black could’ve easily taken the advantage further and potentially kill her. Aeira knew this. She also knew that the knife from before could’ve killed her. She was walking in a straight line, no efforts to make anything harder for someone to hit on her. It was meant to get her attention. Uncharacteristically, Aeira decided to not pull out her knife on the other. But a question was raised in her mind. If the woman in black wasn’t there to kill her, then what else was she here for?
The two stared at eachother. The woman in black ran forward to attack, but was interrupted by Aeira striking first. A jumping spin kick was blocked by the woman’s umbrella, yet she didn’t forsee Aeira’s speed. The block didn’t stop her momentum, and she quickly landed and sweeped at the woman’s legs. The woman jumped back, performing a flip. Aeira turned into another kick, but the woman’s flip dodged it perfectly. She followed the woman’s landing. Aeira ran up as she did for the side kick earlier. This time, she jumped instead of the kick. The woman, expecting the same attack, stuck out her umbrella to block it again. Aeira used the umbrella as a surface to hop off of. The woman turned around and repositioned her umbrella to go under Aeira’s foot. She used the umbrella to jump off it again, this time backflipping off it. The woman jumped away and disengaged, buying time for her to prepare herself for Aeira's next attack. A smile still remained on her face.
“Do I know you from somewhere?” Aeira asked. The woman looked up as if she was thinking, then shook her head. “Do you know me from somewhere?” Aeira rephrased her question. The woman nodded immediately. Aeira’s mind went back to the fight.
Aeira knew she didn’t have the opportunity to start being defensive. The woman had a shield, Aeira did not. She was also shown to have knives to throw. Who is to say she doesn’t have a gun? With this in mind, Aeira charged at the woman again. She feinted a kick towards the head. The woman pointed the canopy up to the right, allowing Aeira to go in for a punch. The woman sidestepped her punch and moved towards Aeira’s side. Aeira threw another punch as she wasn’t in kicking range. The woman backstepped and redirected it. Aeira took the momentum and spun around into a spinning backfist, making sure to be closer. The woman in black redirected her attack yet again. Aeira decided to use the momentum yet again, this time going for another leg sweep. The woman gracefully stepped outside of the sweep’s range. She then stepped back in, using her free hand to deliver a punch straight to Aeira’s cheek. A laugh could be heard from the woman, but she stopped it immediately as if it was on accident.
The blue-haired girl looked around. Nope, no people.
Aeira was put on her stomach. She rolled to the side, evading any other hits the woman would throw at her. Once on her back, she got herself up. She didn’t have time to wear the woman out, and she didn’t want to, either. She needed to end this, as quickly as possible. People had to have been coming soon, right?
The woman was able to either evade or block every attack, yet those were all with the intent of wearing her out. Aeira needed to disarm her. The center of the canopy was a darker color than the rest. It was also where the woman was aiming when blocking and redirecting attacks. Logically, it’d be the only part of any actual use in defense.
‘Aim for the outside.’ Aeira moved in, drop-stepping into a jab. The woman redirected it easily. ‘Too close,’ she thought. She moved in again. She jumped, spinning and kicking as she had done before. The woman redirected it, but the distance between her and Aeira made her require more precision than before. The redirection made Aeira spin several times mid-air, but she landed on her feet. She was getting closer to her ideal range. The woman then closed her umbrella, charging at Aeira. She started using it as a rapier, thrusting at Aeira’s head. Aeira sidestepped it. The woman thrusted again, several times, ending in a slash. Aeira continued to sidestep them, keeping her eyes on the woman’s hands. She ducked the slash and looked up. The woman had to have known that Aeira would dodge all of it; her moves were telegraphed. It felt like she was being played with.
They heard the sounds of a motorcycle, both of them looking away to see where it came from.
They had to move quick. Aeira presumed that the woman would have less time to think now. Aeira’s own gameplan didn’t change. She started a series of several kicks. The woman blocked the first and dodged the second, spinning into blocking the resulting barrage with her umbrella. She then threw the umbrella into the air. Aeira kicked before she could catch it. The woman slipped under it, catching her umbrella and charging towards Aeira with it. Aeira, caught off guard, put her right foot onto it. She spun into an axe kick. The woman stepped back and attempted to block it. She had miscalculated, however, and it resulted in the umbrella being knocked to the ground. In the moments before it landed, Aeira couldn’t see the woman. The canopy covered her face. With the element of surprise on her side, the woman punched Aeira in the gut. Aeira stepped back, disoriented from the force of the blow. The woman took the opportunity to run up and drop kick Aeira. The kick sent Aeira off the roof and down towards an alleyway. She managed to reorient herself, grabbing onto a staircase railing on the side of a building. She dropped down and landed, knowing the drop wasn’t too far to hurt her.
Curiously, the woman didn’t follow. She instead picked up her umbrella and fled, dropping a small piece of paper. She hit deceptively hard for someone of her size, stronger than Aeira ever had. A super strength mutant? Possibly. But if she had held back so many times in their short encounter, then surely the woman wouldn’t bring out her power then? What was her name?
So many questions, and none of them were answered when Aeira grabbed the paper out of the air. Before reading it, she took out her phone, texting the ‘cool girl’ contact ‘you wanna do that meet up thing?’ Looking back down to the piece of paper, she read:
‘ur cool, lol’ ‘What the fuck.’
She also looked to see a man sitting on another man's back. 'What the fuck?' "Why?"
She asked, tilting her head.