Were you ever the reason a car accident occurred?
That feeling is unbearably terrifying for the driver.
I don't blame Toshiro for panicking. If someone died, he'd suffer from episodic breakdowns for the rest of his life.
"I..." His lips quivered, clearly, his entire life flashed before his eyes.
I rubbed Toshiro's arm trying to calm him down when my peripheral vision caught a glimpse of the individual getting up from the side of the road. By this time, the smoke had cleared, and to our surprise...
The mysterious individual only glared at us with disdain and contempt.
"Dude, watch it!"
That human- no, actually we weren't sure if that figure was even human, for his eyes glowed with a streak of green light emitting from his pupils.
In addition to this foreign ability were the grass colored translucent arms floating beside this individual. He wore the longest blue cloak I’ve ever seen, which covered practically his entire body.
The man groaned and rubbed his back with one of those arms, then blinked twice. The floating arms dissipated along with the streaks in his eyes.
Then it was an awkward staring contest.
We were flabbergasted, but it's amusing how our reactions differed.
"Huh,” My brother stayed completely still in his seat.
"Hold on, do that again!" I cheerfully beamed at the stranger. Without hesitation, one foot was out the door while my hand grabbed onto the handle.
The figure contemplated escaping the scene. His back was half turned from us and he leaned forward as if he was about to propel himself.
But for whatever reason, he simply sighed and glanced to the side.
With obvious frustration written on his face, I cautiously stepped forward and waved in front of him. He didn’t dare to look at me.
“Heeeeeey,” I said slowly, “Are you human?”
“Ah tch! Kamiko!” I heard Toshiro from behind, “you can’t be asking people if they’re human!”
“Oh don’t be so modest,” I hollered back, “You’re thinking the same. Hey, you-“ I squinted at the stranger who finally stared me down, “so, what are you?”
“Ugh,” the stranger did an exasperated sigh, “Fine, not like I can’t get out of this one seeing that SOMEONE doesn’t know how to operate their own machine.”
“Hey!” Toshiro stormed toward us, “you were the one crossing an uphill street at a TURN. Anyone with half a brain would know that’s a random and dangerous spot to be walking!”
“Well then pay attention! If it’s that dangerous then you humans shouldn’t make turns in roads!”
“Aha,” I interrupted, both of the men turned simultaneously, “I knew it. You’re totally an alien.”
“Alien?” The stranger chuckled at the thought of it, “wrong term, miss. The name’s Kingston, and I’m a Fallen.”
“You humans call us demons.”
“A demon!” Toshiro clenched his teeth, yet the curiosity never left him, “you look more human than demon to me. Where are the horns? The bat-looking wings? Are you an Oni in disguise?”
“Toshiro!” I smacked his arm, “you can’t be asking people where or what their body parts are!”
“Fine fine, you have your point,” Toshiro focused his attention back at Kingston, “but no, seriously. This is your last chance to stop messing around with us.”
“I didn’t expect you to believe me,” Kingston stepped forward to observe Toshiro’s damaged hood, “eh.”
Without a second thought, the demon blinked, resurrected the two translucent arms, and lifted the car.
This time, those floating arms were visually more muscular, but what surprised me more was how much larger the hands were to be able to grab onto the vehicle.
Woah, can he control the size and shape of those things?!
I turned to look at Toshiro, only to burst out in laughter when I saw the expression on his face. Someone who got slaughtered, that’s what.
"Alright idiot, where are we taking this machine?"
Kingston's question snapped Toshiro out of his trance.
"What do you mean huh! I asked you a question! Unless you don't need my help."
"This is not how I envisioned our first day of vacation."
"What he means is he appreciates it," I chimed in, "And I do too. Well, it would've been great if our car wasn't damaged on our first day of break but Toshiro knows how to maintain stuff like this."
Kingston raised an eyebrow. The young man's glistening red eyes reflected the damaged bumper as he turned around.
"A 'car', so that's what it's called."
Toshiro began to walk ahead of us. The path to Grandma's house was only a couple of miles away, and it was obvious that none of us will be getting a ride there.
"As much as I don't want that stranger touching my car," Toshiro stubbornly huffed, "It's better than to call towing services."
"That's the part where he reminds me of our dad," I whispered to Kingston, "He can be a bit of a cheapskate so he fixes everything on his own."
"I CAN HEAR YOU!"
Rows of cluttered trees waved along with the wind and greeted us toward a small town located on a plateau of the mountain. This was our father's home, a place where people knew each other by name, while others call their friends "family".
It's a cozy little area; among the slithering roads were shops opened by small business owners trying to share their marketable skills with their community. The crafts of jewelry, paper planes, candles, and even a small performing arts stage to entertain the elderly. I remembered Grandma used to visit the stage just to see what the local high schoolers in drama class would perform.
Along the main roads were smaller, denser paths that led lost individuals into the neighboring forest.
This was the path Toshiro ended up taking because none of us wanted to be spotted with a demon. Or rather, it wasn't his looks that would be hard to explain to the adults trying to protect their children roaming in the playgrounds.
It was his powers.
Almond-shaped eyes illuminated a streak of light, which I had correlated with the reactivation of those...floating arms. Nothing exhilarating about them other than I can somewhat see through them with a green filter. Apparently, he can also adjust the size of them too.
"So like, I have a million questions."
I walked next to the demon, with the car over our heads to cover us from the scorching hot sun. Toshiro, however, remained frustrated and continued to walk ahead of us.
"Sure, out with it," Kingston gazed ahead, "Gotta satisfy the human curiosity."
"What's your full name?"
He widened his eyes. "Uh, well..."
"Do you not have a full name? Or is it just Kingston?"
"N-no, I do, it's just," he shook his head, "actually never mind. The name's Kingston de Leaux."
"de Le-lux, de Lyn- I'll just call you Kingston."
Toshiro immediately turned around. I practically heard the roars of a mighty lion going off.
I returned a playful smirk at my brother. He stared at me with a disapproving look.
"And uh, what are your names?" Kingston asked.
"I'm Fujisaki Kamiko, and that there is my brother, Fujisaki Toshiro!"
"Ah, siblings," the demon chuckled, "hah, that's brilliant. Do you guys get along?"
"That sucks," he replied, maybe my sarcasm wasn't obvious enough, "I can see your point. Toshiro would rather rot under the sun than stay cool with us."
My brother spun around and stomped his way back to us with seething anger. I had probably blinked once; his face already in front of Kingston's.
"It's Fujisaki to you," Toshiro said, "Just because you're a demon doesn't mean you get special treatment."
"Get out of my face, dimwit," Kingston retaliated calmly, "Don't forget who has the ability to drop your car off the side of this mountain."
"Hey," I slowly pushed my brother away from Kingston, "Toshiro, I know you're stressed out about the car, but we need him to help us right now. Arguing isn't solving anything."
Toshiro's yell threw us in a shock. It was rare to witness my brother being the guy who lost his temper.
Then again, he was always playing the bigger person. I was simply the observer.
"No, Kamiko!" Toshiro let out a deep breath, "I just got back from renovating a house and remodeling our rooms. I wanted to give us- you- a good break for once and now the car's ruined! And then an ACTUAL demon shows up out of nowhere, which, by the way, IS A BIG DEAL. Do you know what this means! It changes everything! He's proof that aliens-"
"DEMONS EXIST. But not the kind people imagined. If word gets out de Leaux is with us, imagine the paparazzi! News outlets from all over the world! The GOVERNMENT IS PROBABLY GOING TO LOOK FOR US-"
"You can call me Kingston," the demon interjected, "I don't...I'm not fond of my family name."
"All of this is overwhelming," Toshiro rubbed his forehead, "And this should be overwhelming to you too, Kamiko. But you're..."
He's right. From a different perspective, I probably acted as if meeting a demon was just another day at school. A new gossip, that's how I treated it. A bunch of questions to know the juice of something foreign.
"Toshiro," I stepped away from Kingston and exposed myself under the sunlight, "I know all of this is very sudden. But please, until we know what's going on, I don't want you to panic."
"Easy to say that, sis," Toshiro clenched his fists, "After all, I was always the one who-"
He paused, realizing he could've spoken words with damage that couldn't be retracted.
In return, I had taken a leap and embraced him with a hug.
"It's okay, Toshiro," I sighed and let go of him, "I'm not a child anymore. You don't always have to feel like you need to protect me."
"I'm not trying to protect you, I'm just doing my job to make sure you're fine whenever you have troubling things going on."
"And that's my problem. It's like the nightmares. What exactly can you do? Those battles are my own to fight. I appreciate the times when you stayed by my side to make sure I slept well, but, you don't need to do that anymore."
Toshiro glanced at me. His eyes sparkled with the warm light of the sun. The trees danced a little, signaling for us to continue our journey down the path.
"Sorry to burst in your moment here," Kingston approached us and covered our heads from the heat with the car, "But uh, how much longer do we have until we arrive at your house? This thing's heavy."
Both of us widened our eyes. "Oh."
"de Lea- Kingston," Toshiro said slowly, "My bad for lashing out. We're just going through a lot. A car accident and the revelation of demons existing were the last things in my mind to expect."
"Dude it's fine, yelling is a common occurrence from where I came."
That sure raised suspicious eyebrows.
"Speaking of you," I still had 999,999 questions left, "Tell us your story."