Chapter 11:

Seven Deadly Sins part A

Crimson Core

How to enter [World Within]?Bookmark here

Step 1: Establish a contact between The Stabilizer (Type1) and The Fighter (Type2) Shard carriers into an Active Shard pair. Bookmark here

Step 2: Establish a contact between an Active Shard pair and an Inactive Shard carrier that is being stabilized by either a Compassion Shard carrier (Type3) or an Unconditional Shard carrier (Type4).Bookmark here

Step 3: With a help of a Prism, build The Bridge between all parties that leads into a [World Within] of an Inactive Shard carrier.Bookmark here

Step 4: Inside of [World Within] there is only an Active Shard pair. Their task is to collect [Loose Mana] and locate the Spark.Bookmark here

Step 5: Once Spark is located, one of the Active Shard carriers, The Stabilizer, pumps all the Mana into it which turns the Spark into a [Crimson Core].Bookmark here

Step 6: Upon activation, [Crimson Core] pulls an Active Shard pair into a special world that craves stabilization. Once the conditions are fulfilled, Active Shard pair is forced out of the [World Within].Bookmark here

„...“Bookmark here

„You already know all these things Nii, why are you still reading that?“Bookmark here

Small girl stood in front of a messy bed in a tiny room that was covered in papers with various texts and numbers written in every corner.Bookmark here

The boy was laying down, dressed in old worn-out shirt. His eyes were on papers he held tightly as if he was afraid that they would run away from him.Bookmark here

„You don't get it,“ boy sighed, „one day you'll become a Type 2 and you'll find a strong Type 1 that will care for you and protect you.“Bookmark here

He turned his head towards the small girl. She was a cute short-haired girl with big brown eyes. She was holding a box filled with homemade cookies that she obviously prepared for her brother.Bookmark here

„I thought these might cheer you up,“ she brought a box close to the boy.Bookmark here

He looked deep into her eyes while barely containing his tears.Bookmark here

„I don't deserve you, Chizu,“ he brushed her hand while reaching for the box.Bookmark here

Girl dropped down her head and noticed that floor was covered in papers as well.Bookmark here

„Don't say it like that. You're the best Nii in a whole wide world,“ she stole few glances from him out of the embarrassment.Bookmark here

At this point the boy found himself at the very verge of breaking down. He slowly got up from bed and walked towards the door.Bookmark here

„Don't worry about me, I'm going to take Sunbar for a walk,“ said the boy and whistled.Bookmark here

Fluffy golden retriever ran to him as fast as he possible could have, while knocking down couple of papers on his way.Bookmark here

Boy and his dog walked down the stairs and were stopped abruptly by a woman that happened to be boy's mother.Bookmark here

„Miss Anro called, why weren't you in school today?“ she asked while holding a small glass filled with fluid that gave strong odor.Bookmark here

„That glass won't bring back dad, you know,“ said the boy and quickly passed by his mother.Bookmark here

„Daichi! You can't talk to me like that!“ she was yelling behind his back while waving her hand, spilling some liquid from her glass.Bookmark here

„I told you my name is Omicron, you lost Daichi long time ago,“ boy added while grabbing a jacket and left the house.Bookmark here

„Nii...“ girl sneaked down the stairs, worrying for her brother's safety.Bookmark here

„ ...“Bookmark here

Omi lived few blocks away from the school, which meant he was always on time for a bell. He never skipped a single class in his life so everyone got worried for him. He never walked his dog towards the school, he would always choose the opposite direction where none of his acquaintances lived. Bookmark here

The path followed by a canal was filled with greenery and a small stream that led all the way to the other side of town. It was intertwined by several rusty bridges, and he would walk all the way to the last bridge, the one nearest to Umeko's usual route.Bookmark here

They always hung out there when they were kids and it remains the best escape spot for him.Bookmark here

You could see all the bridges in the distance and sunsets were particularly beautiful from there, in his opinion of course. The air of nostalgia surrounded him as soon as he reached the place.Bookmark here

One part of him wanted to „accidentally“ tumble into Umeko, but the other part enjoyed solitude filled with old memories.Bookmark here

It was already November, so the daylight lasted for a very short period of time. By the time he sat on a bench near the bridge it was almost nightfall.Bookmark here

It seemed like the dog shared his master's enthusiasm. He placed his woolly bottom beneath the bench and eyed the passing pedestrians.Bookmark here

„Look at you two cowboys,“ Umeko approached the bench.Bookmark here

Omi acted as he didn't hear her. Or more precisely, didn't want to hear her.Bookmark here

Sunbar waved his tail happily and put his furry nose beneath Ume's hands. She was holding a small black cat in her embrace.Bookmark here

„Oh hey..“ Omi barely greeted her, he wanted to jump out of his own skin.Bookmark here

„Nice shirt, where's the fancy suit?“ Ume observed Omi's uncharacteristic attire.Bookmark here

„At dry cleaning...khm cleening,“ Omi didn't want to raise his head.Bookmark here

Small kitty meowed at the dog. Ume put the kitty down which immediately ended up playing in Sunbar's fur.Bookmark here

„Sunbar is such a player,“ Ume giggled.Bookmark here

After a short pause Omi mustered up the courage to ask a question.Bookmark here

„So, how are things with you and Kap?“Bookmark here

Ume was surprised a bit that he didn't waste a single moment to be direct.Bookmark here

„As usual,“ she replied while brushing her arms to warm herself up.Bookmark here

„Oh, so now you have [The Usual], huh“Bookmark here

„What is that supposed to mean?“ Bookmark here

Ume squinted her eyes a bit and looked straight at Omi that couldn't maintain an eye contact with her. Or more precisely, didn't want to. Bookmark here

He was disgusted by the words that came from his mouth but he was powerless to stop them.Bookmark here

„Well, you and him are...“ Omi tried to explain his thought, but was quickly interrupted by visibly upset Ume.Bookmark here

„Me and Shiki are partners, you know darn well how hard I wanted a proper partner,“ Ume waved with her hands.Bookmark here

„But you and me...“ Omi was yet again interrupted by a long sigh from Ume.Bookmark here

„We talked about this so many times already. The only reason why we had tried to make this thing between us work was for Ren and her sis Mia.“Bookmark here

Omi clenched his fist. He was partially glad that she didn't let him finish the sentences. But that feeling was fleeting.Bookmark here

„So, you think you and him will succeed?“ He looked at Ume with eyes filled with pain.Bookmark here

„At least me and Shiki can give it a proper shot,“ Ume grabbed tiny kitten that meowed her goodbyes to Sunbar and walked away.Bookmark here

„Shiki this, Shiki that...he is just a Kappa,“ Omi muttered to himself.Bookmark here

Nostalgia for the good times of old was now overwritten by feeling of uneasiness and helplessness.Bookmark here

„It's a curse of Omicrons, Sunbar. Although now I feel like this is a curse of Daichi...“Bookmark here

Omi petted the furry head of his companion that was still keeping an eye on Ume that walked away in a distance.Bookmark here

„...“Bookmark here

Omi wandered aimlessly for hours and somehow ended up in front of the main gates of Lotus Medical Institute.Bookmark here

He stopped for longer than anyone would have and surveilled the entire front entrance of the building. Bookmark here

„Maybe they can give me a partner, huh Sunbar?“ Pale face of an energetic boy disturbed poor dog that could only whimper while walking in place.Bookmark here

He kept staring at giant building with a big lotus symbol in it's front. There was a security post besides the gate, but luckily it was empty. Bookmark here

Indescribable feeling streamed through Omi's body which invited him over and over again.Bookmark here

His fickle mind was strained between Ume, his sister, mother and it seemed like the cause of avalanche was Shiki. More like he condemned a poor fellow as a prime suspect.Bookmark here

He decided to answer the call from an unknown number.Bookmark here

Omi took the leash and tied it to a nearest fence.Bookmark here

„Wait for me a bit, Sunbar,“ dog barked couple of times as if he was trying to warn Omi, but to no avail.Bookmark here

Boy slipped through the small opening in main gates and approached the building. Couple of employees, probably scientist were having a smoke break in front of the stairs, so Omi sneaked through the bushes and ended up on the right side of the building.Bookmark here

What's up with scientist and their nicotine addiction, he thought to himself while hiding behind the tree.Bookmark here

There were a series of giant garage doors, and one of them was half-open. A sound of car engine that won't start echoed from inside.Bookmark here

The odd sensation only thickened from this point on, it played with his thoughts like an unsupervised kid.Bookmark here

Without a doubt in his mind, Omi entered that garage.Bookmark here

„Oh come on you stupid old fart, don't do this to me!“ A loud husky female voice was followed by a couple of harsh bangs on the windshield.Bookmark here

When the woman noticed Omi standing at the garage entrance, she leaped from a car like a ballerina.Bookmark here

„Oh hey honey, wanna give this lady a hand?“ She encircled him with her hand that was far stronger than he anticipated. His face ended up in her long wavy red hair.Bookmark here

He had no idea about the cars in the first place, but couldn't say no to her request. Something drew him towards her and he wanted to find out what.Bookmark here

With a single turn of car keys, the car started.Bookmark here

„Ahhh I knew it! You're a lifesaver, thank you,“ lady hugged him without batting an eye. Bookmark here

She seemed extremely clingy but Omi didn't mind that at all. After all, he is just an average healthy 17 year old boy that sneaks around medical institutes followed by unknown instincts.Bookmark here

„By the way, who are you anyway? You sneaked in here?“Bookmark here

Omi wasn't perplexed by her question because her tone was unmistakably friendly.Bookmark here

„My name is Omicron,“ he said calmly.Bookmark here

Lady's eyes widened and her smile broke from ear to ear.Bookmark here

„Oh a Prime Shard! My name is Nana, I work here, unlike certain someone,“ she stuck out her tongue in a rude but playful manner.Bookmark here

Omi didn't even react to her words. A strong sense of belonging enveloped his body and it was far stronger than anything he felt before.Bookmark here

Alongside that incredible sentiment came guilt. Bookmark here

He felt like he is betraying Umeko. Even though she is with someone else, he still pledged loyalties towards her.Bookmark here

Nana realized his head was somewhere else, so she decided to anchor him back home.Bookmark here

„I saw you sneaking around earlier and I kinda opened the garage doors and kinda wanted you to help the damsel in distress hehe“Bookmark here

This sentence put Omi out of the trance. He finally figured out that he was indeed trespassing and could get in trouble for that.Bookmark here

„Sorry, I should be going...“ Omi was preparing to leave the car but Nana locked the doors with a single button on a side panel.Bookmark here

„Shift just ended, and the security guard will catch you and when they figure out that you're a Prime oh boy don't get me started,“ Nana looked at Omi with her pale blue eyes which reminded him of Cyn for some reason.Bookmark here

What am I doing here, this is unlike me, he thought.Bookmark here

„Then I should..“ Omi scratched his face and waited for Nana to make a suggestion.Bookmark here

„You will let me drive you home, that's the least I can do,“ said the lady as she went in reverse out of the garage.Bookmark here

„Sorry, I don't want to get you in trouble because of some dumb feeling I had,“ Omi tried to excuse himself.Bookmark here

Lady braked abruptly as soon as Omi ended his thought and looked straight into his eyes.Bookmark here

„Not a single feeling you feel is dumb, the only dumb thing in that story is you who thinks that feelings are dumb.“ Bookmark here

Words mashed around Nana's pale red lips but Omi was too occupied being torn between her radiance and a thought of getting caught.Bookmark here

„I get it, sorry, can we go now?“ he said while inspecting every window for a sign of someone coming.Bookmark here

„Calm down shinobi, we're going,“ lady stepped on a gas pedal and exited the premise from the main gate.Bookmark here

A minute later she violently stopped the car yet again and jumped on the backseat. Omi was so scared the security guard will see him that he laid his head down, practically between his legs.Bookmark here

After a couple of seconds he heard small footsteps and out of a corner of his eye he saw a fluffy yellow dog jumping on a backseat.Bookmark here

Lady stepped into the car and put giant metal scissors on Omi's legs.Bookmark here

„You almost forgot about your darn dog!“ Bookmark here

When Omi looked back, he saw a cut leash hanging off the fence.Bookmark here

„How did you..“ Omi was thoroughly confused how did Nana know about the dog.Bookmark here

„Oh honey, the only reason why you're in my car right now is because I wanted you here,“ she said in a cute way.Bookmark here

Nana turned on the radio and weird music started playing. It was a mixture of metal, techno and jazz. Omi didn't find the music bad or off-putting. It calmed his nerves for some reason.Bookmark here

Sunbar happily played with a rubber toy he found on the backseat of her car while she was driving.Bookmark here

„So, this feeling I got that guided me to you, that was your doing?“ Omi asked.Bookmark here

„Oh no! That was all you. You're a really good Omicron, you detected me from a great distance,“ said lady while tapping her fingers in a rhythm of an unusual song.Bookmark here

Night sky gave birth to millions of stars that shined brightly as they made their way on the open road. They left the city lights behind them.Bookmark here

„Where are you taking me?“ Omi asked as cold sweat started to give him chills. It reminded him of a Shiki which annoyed him more than it should.Bookmark here

„Don't worry, I'm taking you on a job with me. I need a partner for tonight,“ said lady nonchalantly.Bookmark here

„What job?“ Omi gulped the saliva and embraced for the answer.Bookmark here

„Job within the World silly, you wanted a partner more than anything, right?“ they ended up driving through the tunnel.Bookmark here

„How do you know all these things?“ he askedBookmark here

„Ask your friend Ren about that, her big-shot daddy has a real influence,“ tunnel lights periodically illuminated her red hair that seemed brighter than before.Bookmark here

„August Lotus? Wait, are you recruiting me?“ Omi wondered.Bookmark here

„That depends on us, pumpkin,“ Nana smiled gently.Bookmark here

When they made their way out of the tunnel, several nuances from brightest to lightest of purples exploded through the sky like fireworks.Bookmark here

Road beneath the tires changed from asphalt into rocks and dust all of sudden. Nana took a turn left and drove up the hill.Bookmark here

Narrow road led to the top that was overgrown with pine trees. Road curved like a long snake which made Omi hug the giant scissors in case they accidentally stab Nana or him. Sunbar seemed to enjoy the ride in the backseat.Bookmark here

„But I'm just a high school student, I'm not old enough for this,“ said Omi with his face stuck to scissors.Bookmark here

„Excuse me sir, I'm just few years older than you!“ lady pushed the gas pedal stronger than before which made Omi cling to scissors even harder.Bookmark here

They had finally reached the top, and a large villa presented itself before their eyes.Bookmark here

Nana fixed her makeup for couple of seconds. She refreshed her lipstick and put more eyeliner below her eyes. Bookmark here

That move alone made Omi feel completely out of place.Bookmark here

„Don't judge me! A Lady must look her best at every occasion,“ she slammed the card door.Bookmark here

„I didn't know I would get a new partner so soon...“ Omi muttered while Sunbar guarded his new favorite toy.
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