Ch. 2 *Azaiah*
“I know you mean well, but it just seems suspicious that you two came from the same planet and both ended up here in the same city, the same LYS building,” the commander noted, glancing over two separate documents on his desk.
“Like I told you before, there’s nothing between us. It’s just like any normal human. We were born in the same place and just so happen to be heading down the same path.” I reiterated almost annoyed.
“Right… Well, I’ll take your word for it… for now. I’ll be watching for any complications to arise,” he glared me down, as if he were trying to intimidate me.
I stood up and brushed off the stare, more irritated with his questioning rather than frightened by it.
If anything pissed me off more, it was a lack of trust. Especially as a Silver Ranked member of the LYS by a commander . Not even a chief. This same guy was convinced that I had been affiliated with the other Ice Angel in our vicinity because we both came from the same home planet. So that obviously meant we had to be mates of some sort.
I stepped into the elevator and requested to be taken to floor 18, where I could pick up a quest tag. I glanced over the quest logs and read each case carefully. Werewolf sightings, unusual serial killer patterns, graveyards dug up, demons summoned in a local park. All of these seemed like mundane missions that could be tackled by rookies. I slumped down at a table and sighed. Nothing interesting was happening. At least not for a Silver Ranked Angel. If I happened to be Gold, I would be hunting down Buigels along with the others. But for the moment, I apparently wasn’t prepared or “trusted” enough to go out and hunt like that.
My demeanor changed slightly as someone else stepped out from the elevator. He seemed a bit younger than me, and a bit clueless as to how this whole mission thing worked. A rookie at its finest. He gave me a worried look, as if he didn’t want to be judged by his awkwardness. He hid behind his long, white hair. I couldn’t quite tell what specie he was, but from the looks of it, he seemed human.
“You looking to go out and do some local hunting?” I inquired, giving him an inviting look.
“Uh… yeah. I don’t really… I haven’t, um, done one yet. But that chief guy told me I could take a blue tag and figure it out.”
“Ah, right. Chief can be an ass sometimes, especially when he’s stressed,” I explained, hoping my nonchalant attitude wasn’t scaring him or anything. I wanted to make him feel at ease. At least I could try and have somebody’s trust.
“Um…” the kid mumbled a bit under his breath before walking over to the tag board. He scanned over the quests, not knowing what meant what.
“You’d be best off with a blue tag quest. They’re local, smaller jobs that rookies pick up. You’ve been through your training and everything, right?” I raised the question.
“Yeah, just a week's worth. They said my kind doesn’t need any more, but… I don’t know. I guess I’m just not comfortable with anything yet…” he muttered.
I rose from the table and stood beside him by the board, glancing over the tags. “Well they certainly don’t just let anyone leave training after only a week. What are you, human?”
“Uh, sort of… I’m a ghost hybrid, but prefer my human form,” he spoke shyly, as if he were ashamed of what he was.
“No wonder,” I scoffed a bit. “Ghosts don’t usually join our side, and we’re always bashing heads with them. You’re pretty rare, kid,” I smiled. He flushed, refusing to look at me. I was probably making him uncomfortable. “What’s your name, by the way?”
“My name’s Azaiah,” I said before picking up a blue tag. “Here. This one seems simple enough. There’s a bar down the road that many human hunters hang by. One of them stole a gun from us about a week ago, and we need it back. You can manage that, right?” I asked, offering him the tag. He grabbed ahold of it, looking over the mission’s requirements.
“Yeah, that doesn’t seem too hard,” he gave a faint smile before finally looking me in the eyes.
“Glad I could help,” I replied, glad that I might have won over a bit of trust.
“Maybe I’ll see you around,” Elian said before vanishing from plain sight. I blinked a bit, not expecting that sort of exit. The idea occurred to me that I should try and follow him, but I decided against it. I wouldn’t want some upper rank watching over me trying to get my career started, after all.
I glanced over the tags again, disappointed with the jobs.
“Lucky for you, Azaiah. I’ve brought some new stuff for you to browse through.”
I jumped in panic. Turning around, I realized it was only Tony, one of the trainers from the gym downstairs. He was in charge of bringing up new missions from the front desk when they arrived.
“Ah, heh, sweet.”
“Scared you, didn’t I?” Tony laughed. I shoved him to the side.
He placed 20 fresh tags on the board, 5 of each color, before placing the tray down on the table and turning back to me.
“You allowed to take gold tags yet? Or are you still down in the silver region?” he asked.
“Still Silver Ranked… It kinda sucks,” I sighed, looking over the new quests.
“There are some gold tags that I think you might be able to handle… I know it’s not necessarily safe to take them, but I won’t snitch if you do,” Tony smiled devilishly. I’m glad he understood my desperation for actual jobs. These other missions were mundane.
“Thanks, bro,” I smirked before letting him head back downstairs. I grabbed the 5 new gold tags and placed them on the table, wondering which one he was referring to. The first one was a serial killer lead. The next three were pseudo Buigel leads. But after picking up the last one, I understood what he was talking about.
-Hunted Buigels, Aejins confirmed-
I left the four tags on the table, and within seconds, I was out of the LYS building. It frightened me that the chief and other hunters could be so careless with their investigations.
We weren’t hunting Buigels. We were hunting shapeshifters that were much, much worse than them.