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I took the medicine Lis gifted to me, and out of the people of her group, she was, at the very least, the most trust worthy of the bunch. However, that’s perhaps something that could make her even more dangerous than the others. While thinking of that in the mean time I had to use my own saliva to force down the pill, as stupid as it was to do it that way.

Selsie’s lower body expanded and contracted as her lungs started reaching for the precious oxygen most living things yearn for, but they do so without even knowing until it’s taken away from them. Selsie will die before she wakes up. Some may disagree with me, but she’ll die slowly but without knowing it. It might even be painless. I’m sure Lis’ group could have just as easily done Selsie in with a fatal hit and that would have been the end of it.

Holding my hand to my head, I start remembering about the pain the only briefly subsided a moment after I start moving around the area. The ground was surprisingly harder than usual around here. Rocks, grass, trees, bushes, there wasn’t much aside from those things. That’s the problem. After a few minutes of searching, I can’t find paw prints around the area to help lead me to Zeyl. Not near where I first woke up, nor where Selsie is right now resting.

The pain on my head started again, mostly because of the constant movement I just did in search for a good sign of embedded prints on the earth to start following. I lay down next to Selsie after having no such luck. I close my eye momentarily. That I would open them after a few seconds was the plan, but in that span of time I just fell asleep completely without noticing. That was also despite my own words telling me that I was just going to rest my eyes momentarily. I blame the medicine I got from what is likely an unlicensed doctor, but thank her anyway in my mind.

I dreamt about my mother, the one from this world, as opposed to my real parent. Glinn came inside my room while Alice was folding my clothes, which included pairs of socks, underwear, and various shirts of different colors and patterns. I had stood up before Glinn entered, as I heard the knob turning in hopes of seeing something new in between the gaps of the door. After all, I had already been in that room of mines for quite a while. Then our eyes met. She might not act like it but, when Glinn is in fact around, she acts like the real mother that gave birth to me. She looked excited and came to me immediately, picking me and holding me near her with her arm supporting my bottom.

“I love you~” she said in this dream, kissing my cheek. It would be unfair if I didn’t say that this was a dream of a memory. This memory filled the vacant spot that would have otherwise been filled by my real parent. I can’t lie and say that I don’t feel that connection from parent to child when it concerns Glinn, because I never really received that from my own parent because they weren’t ever around.

This dream quickly turned into a nightmare, however. My sister stood by that very same door that Glinn entered from just a moment later, it was my real sister, and she looked to me while I was enjoying a moment I had never experienced and cursed me for choosing this life over the one I had with her as siblings. We didn’t have parents, so we only had each other to count on. And then I left her.

That’s not true. Those were words I tried forcing out of my mouth, but in this dream I was only about a few months old. I couldn’t even speak. My sister slammed shut that same door, leaving me to wake up in that instant from the loud sound it had made.

Back in the forest, I noticed the wind was absent today, not even a mile an hour went by where I could feel it pass by me. I get up on my feet and check my surroundings. This cleared my suspicion when I saw that no one was around, which meant that Lis’ group hadn’t returned to take the stones. Then indeed, the trade was complete.

I did in fact take Lis’ comment seriously, but asking me to undo the magic… and then take a mysterious pill that could have otherwise been poison? That sounding too good to be true, but I chose to take the medicine despite that; however, I also left my stones on standby. If I am going to do, then I should take one of them with me. That is, under the assumption that the stone I carried had that purpose in mind. The first one protected me, there is the seeker stone, and the others seemed to have the express purpose of causing harm to those that wish to do harm on myself.

The remaining stones that I had on my shirt were three, with one having already depleted and lost it shine while I likely slept. It was the same stone that practically conjured a sword from itself. I don’t completely understand it, but just activating could mean that it will keep using its fuel until all its power is used, which is quite inefficient, if you ask me. If I said it bluntly, I do plan on selling what stones remain, and since I can’t sell the seeker stone with the other half, I will have only two to sell.

This time I go farther away from the general area that Lis’ group and I were located, again, hoping to find any evidence of Selsie passing by and finding her prints on the ground. After about twenty minutes, and I still find nothing.

The medicine was kicking in nicely at this rate, and it doesn’t seem to want to let down one of the symptoms that go along with it. Drowsiness… but it at lets me search the area without too much trouble. I return to where Selsie is.

Her breathing started calming down, or no, it’s more accurate to say that it is a few more seconds away from having her life expire. I sit myself near her, and begin petting her soft fur that I found surprisingly smooth to the touch, expecting it to have a more of dry and rough feeling to it.

If I had an answer to that, I would honestly say it’s soft like that because she’s a girl. Of course, that was a baseless accusation that I really didn’t care looking into. I just don’t have the time to question why her fur would be so soft nor do I have someone to argue with it for the fun conversation that would sprout from it. It will happen soon, anyway, she won’t be breathing… anymore.

With the medicine kicking in again, I slept by Selsie again.

This time I dreamt of that place, that white and strange place where I can’t see but feel what is around me. In this white world there was a girl, one that I’ve never seen before. I walked up to her and she was no younger than five, but still not that short in height in comparison to me. Which reminded me right then, I was Liel’s body, and not in my own like last time.

I look back at the small girl. She faced away from me with her hair extending to her back, grey, very much so in the sense that it is a few shades away from being black. Or perhaps it is because of the light in this dream realm and only makes it seem that way.

“Hello,” I said. She turns around to me, seemingly in pain. “Are you okay?”

“It hurts,” she said.

“What hurts?” I ask. She points to herself, but there are no cuts or bruises that I can see. She didn’t wear anything either to hide such injuries.

“…” She stayed silent, covering her face with her hands.

“Is the pain coming from inside?”

“Yes,” she said, and she began to cry. I took my shirt and covered her, although it wasn’t necessary, there really isn’t much I can do to help her.

“That feels better,” she said, now wearing my shirt. To that comment, I give her a confused expression in return. Not like things are made to make sense in dreams, let alone a world where magic actually exists. In fact, I did once dream of using magic after having seen a popular show where the characters had super powers. That same night I kept thinking about what powers could make me money and help get my little sister into college.

Anyway.

We started walking in this dream, but it lasted only a few moments and we said our goodbyes for some reason or other.

“Bye,” she said, waving back at me, and smiling as she did so. Just then I remember that we didn’t even exchange names.

* * *

I woke up, forgetting everything about that dream. There was this warm heat emanating from one of my stones and then suddenly the glow fainted. Without having time to wonder why, a dark shadow loomed over me. I look up and quickly shut my eyes tightly, forcing my hands up to cover offer the lowest amount of protection. In that instant before I close my eyes, Selsie was standing over me, making her way closer to me with her mouth.

A second later, and I felt something pull me up by my collar. I open my eyes. It was Selsie. I stand back with caution, and begin to shoo her away without results. I sigh after a minute or two of repeating the previous step.

It made no sense that Selsie would be standing before me, seemingly healthy like the first time I saw her thick fur, and her threatening posture. Then I look back at the stone. I was so close to Selsie that it wouldn’t be entirely impossible. But that I had a stone that healed a wound that Lis couldn’t hear is questionable, but then again, I don’t even understand how magic came to be or how it works in this world.

That’s one stone wasted.

I place the last two on the ground, which included the seeker stone, and begin the steps that Lis told me do in order to undo their activation. Afterwards, I now only have one stone that may be worth selling.

I look to Selsie. She somehow used what is perhaps an invaluable stone when it comes to deadly situations. I could have used it on someone else… but for some reason I don’t regret that it went to Selsie, even though she did attack us along with her pack not that long ago.

“Can you understand me?” I ask. Selsie sits with her front legs up. “Go—“ I stop myself.

I was about to tell her to go back to her group.. a group that kills people for their buttons. She looks to me, tilting her head.

“Can you take me to where Zeyl is?”

End.

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Thank you.