Chapter 13:

Part 2- Chapter 2

Snowflake and Butterknife

Edwin laid in bed, Harper had her right arm on top of Edwin. She slept, the sounds of her breathing a comforting rhythm to Edwin. He figured he would be asleep by now, but he wasn't. Tomorrow started his official beginnings as a Peacekeeper, something that weighed heavy in his mind.

He stared out into the darkness of his dorm, he was allowed to remain here for a short time. Reynard was making arrangements for Edwin to get an apartment and would cover the first month's expenses. Edwin wouldn't look forward to moving away, even if this was a place where a Mageye was outcasted.

With a heavy sigh, Edwin moved out of bed. Harper slept heavily in place, barely affected by Edwin’s absence. She simply turned around and continued snoozing.

Edwin crossed the length of his dark room, slipping off his pajama pants and putting on a pair of jeans. Next came socks, each one feeling like an enormous effort on him. He slipped free of his room and entered his living area, where he put on his jacket and shoes, then left into the night. What he was doing was unknown to him, he just needed to get some air. Edwin figured that a cold drink would clear his head, and made his way in the direction of the nearest convenient store.

Reynard sat in his home office. Sim slept in the living room on a blow up mattress that Reynard acquired. In front of Reynard was a map of the Chicago land area. Several dots and lines were drawn, all following landmarks that Sim had identified when they drove through the city looking for the lab Sim had come from.

Based on the landmarks he noted it seemed that Sim had come from the south west, yet he said he had run for a long while before coming into the city. Attempts to identify places outside the nearby area led to confusion from Sim, as things became more blended together the farther out they got from civilization.

Gema had yet to turn up anything of use, as the hospital band had no markings to go off of. At the very least, she had identified there were no trackers on Sim, somehow he had destroyed them when he ate the Mageye.

“It's okay Captain.” Loghain’s voice echoed with the others.

Reynard did not turn towards the voice in question, he was simply another member of the choir.

“You can't blame yourself.” Loghain said.

“I could have been there.” Reynard whispered to himself. He rubbed his eyes, clearly he was far more tired than he had realized.

“We dont blame you.”

Reynard blinked, and found himself back in that wasteland. All around was destruction. Buildings burned or exploded from the bombings. Bodies lay all around, Mothers holding their children, Teenagers clutching whatever weapons they could muster, some holding only copper pipes. A crying child could be heard in the distance, begging for their mother to respond, but she was long dead.

Yet, with all this, it had not fazed him at the time. A much younger Reynard looked at these people as casualties. The teenagers raised arms to them, the Australian Federation had started this war, they could not complain when they got what was coming to them. They had killed so many he cared for, they deserved no kindness from Reynard.

It was that thought that brought Reynard back to reality, as his stomach began to quiver. It wasn't the death that affected him, it was how he felt at that time. A constant reminder for him, one he refused to forget.

Reynard leaned back in his chair, sighing deeply. Maybe he should sleep, yet he wanted answers about Sim. it was so odd, never has a Mageye possessed two abilities. He had spent hours searching through files and reports, looking for anything concrete that would tell him anything, but it was unheard of to have multiple powers.

The Council, this strange Mageye, and a desire to keep Reynard out of it. What was happening? There were so many questions bouncing around in Reynard's mind, too many for him to keep up with. He returned his gaze to his office, he had to organize his thoughts.

He began by clearing the back wall of his office. Before it housed random stacks of files that he had copies of from old cases. He then pushed aside a stack of books he used as reference material when he had first joined the Peacekeepers.

Once the Council had offered Reynard a Detective as a Peacekeeper he took it readily. However, Reynard had no experience with that sort of field, so he spent as much time as he could studying to become better. Though he learned that the best tool was experience. It also helped that he was given the ability to recruit Nova to his team, the puzzle fanatic was perfect for Reynard’s goals and helped him learn much faster.

The numbers on Sim’s band were the first thing he started with, then all details about Sim, then the locations he had passed. Sim wasnt sure how long he had run, though he had mentioned seeing the sun rise. This implied that he had escaped at night, so this lab would have to be close enough to the city. Another question appeared, why? Why have a secret lab close to the city? Wouldn't it have been better to settle it towards a more quiet location in the country?

With the first of his notes on the wall, held up by tape, Reynard looked over it. He wasn't finding the answers he needed, and he wasn't sure what the next move was. Perhaps Nova will have thought of something, but the group had been stuck without leads for some time. Unless they could get Sim out to the location to confirm it they wouldn't make any progress. Reynard sighed in momentary defeat, he would have to wait another day.

Edwin left the convenient store, a cold smoothie in his hand. He preferred hot drinks, but something felt right about the cold drink. It didn't change the tone of his body, which naturally ran colder. Warm drinks often made him feel more alive, it was why he loved his spicy food. It was as if his body was warming to the world around it. But right now, he wanted to feel cold.

He walked the streets, the snow was thin on the ground, though he knew it would only be a few days before the bigger snow falls came upon the city. He could hear the sounds of the city all around, traffic, business, conversation, running.

Edwin turned. Running? He looked down a nearby alleyway between two buildings just as a woman came falling out. She had tripped over something and landed on the ground near Edwin. She looked at the alley, then up at Edwin. Terror filled her eyes.

Edwin turned to see several men in suits running through the alley towards Edwin and the girl. He wasn't sure why, but a sudden rage filled him. In an instant a wall of ice formed, blocking the alley way.

“Are you okay?” Edwin asked, looking over the girl for any injury.

She looked to be a teenager, maybe seventeen. She had platinum blonde hair and a sharp face.

“Yes, please, I have to get away.” She gripped at Edwin’s arm with pleading eyes.

Edwin got her to her feet. “Alright, come with me, though I need some information once we are away from those men.”

“Thank you.” She said as Edwin dragged her down the street, away from any exit that alley may have. 

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