Chapter 3:

Dreams Disappearing

Densetsu: A Beautiful Day

Entering his History class, he was met by a grouchy old man—tall as the Eiffel Tower and thin as a stick, his appearance was not intimidating, but his voice was the thunder. He spouted powerful words that affected the minds of young teens.Bookmark here

Kotaro always avoided meeting eye contact with Chad Willcox, but that seemed to only anger the beast. The teacher announced him in front of the class before proceeding to yell at him. Bookmark here

Some said Chad Wilcox earned his angry attitude from his dad, Dan Wilcox; he always argued with his dad, and nobody knew why. His mere presence brought silence. No one dared to slack off even the slightest in his class.Bookmark here

Kotaro walked to his desk, his eyes in trance as he passed by Mimi. Bookmark here

The sweet fragrance she carried, her long ebony hair braided to a pony-tail at the end, and her very presence brought this calm and peaceful atmosphere. Bookmark here

He could stare at her for an eternity. His love for her sparked ever since the day she came to help him from those bullies. It almost felt like yesterday thinking about that.Bookmark here

Suddenly, a pencil smacked his forehead.Bookmark here

“Hey, wakie-wakie dreamer-boy!” The class laid their eyes on Kotaro. Even Mimi. Bookmark here

He perceived the silent whispers amongst his peers. They became so noticeable that the teacher’s voice was nothing but a sound in the background. Bookmark here

“Mr. Wilcox, can you please continue the session rather than focus your time on Kotaro?” Bookmark here

Her sweet, soothing voice freed him yet again. He couldn’t stop putting his eyes away until he glanced into her light-brown eyes. Kotaro turned them away like nothing happened.Bookmark here

If Rocky were here, they would pick on him with zero restrictions. Sometimes, he felt honored to be isolated from his friends. Bookmark here

The teacher eventually gave up, but there was repercussion if he caught his student slacking again. The classroom had resumed in silence.Bookmark here

For some reason, Kotaro felt his reflexes from his spine kicking in. An ominous wind so odd, he tucked both his arms close to his torso. Bookmark here

“She’s here…”Bookmark here

“Here?” The students including the teacher turned their attention to Kotaro.Bookmark here

“You have something to say, dreamer-boy?”Bookmark here

He shook his head. “Sorry, I thought I heard something.”Bookmark here

“Well, the only thing you should be hearing is me!” yelled Mr. Wilcox, continuing his lecture.Bookmark here

Was I just hearing things? It wasn’t a voice he recognized.Bookmark here

“Dark One…” the ghostly voice returned. Bookmark here

The pencil on his left hand trembled rapidly, creating small scribbles on paper. He scanned his classmates. Zero reaction. Why am I the only one hearing it then?Bookmark here

“Here she comes,” Kotaro beamed at the door with intense concentration.The door screeched high-pitched. Bookmark here

Clinging with darkness, it continuously damaged his fragile ears—not even Mr. Wilcox’s thundering voice was enough to overpower this high-pitch noise. Then, a shadowy and feminine figure emerged from the door. Bookmark here

“Good morning, Mr. Wilcox, I hope I’m not interrupting you.” Recognizing the health teacher, he sighed with relief. Perhaps the voice was foretelling the health teacher coming into the class. If so, it predicted correctly.Bookmark here

“She’s here! Dark One! The Dark One is here!” The voices were no longer whispers, becoming fueled by the flames of rage and malice. The horror returned to him like a splash of cold water. Bookmark here

An invisible force pushed into his waist, his body tensed, shoulders lifted up, and his legs tucked close together. Bookmark here

“I hope it’s nothing serious, Mrs. Jones,” replied Mr. Wilcox.Bookmark here

“Oh no, but you will be having a new student in your class,” Mrs. Jones announced. She turned to the door, her hands waving back and forth in a friendly gesture. “Come here, don’t be shy!”Bookmark here

She entered the classroom. Her face was round, tiny nose, and long, golden strands of hair extended to her shoulders. One particular detail he couldn’t help himself from staring were those bright, azure eyes. Shining like the sun and pure of blue, it was difficult to stop staring. Bookmark here

“This is your first hour. Go on and introduce yourself!”Bookmark here

“Um, my name is Noel Natsuki. As you can see—or I mean, hear, I learned my English from my dad, and my mom is Japanese. I hope to be friends with every one of you!” Bookmark here

Quiet messages passed down amongst the boys and girls. Kotaro was too focused on the whispering voice to listen to his nearby peers. This new student’s very presence bothered him, mostly because of the warnings the voice had said.Bookmark here

The two met eyes. Instantly, her face became threatening with furrowed brows. He quickly looked away, hoping not to cause any trouble with the new student. She must be at me, but why?Bookmark here

It was usually a wonderful experience to have a new student in the class, but that feeling wasn’t there for Kotaro.Bookmark here

“May I please be seated next to him?” requested Noel, bold yet innocent.Bookmark here

A brief silence filled the classroom, and Kotaro became the spotlight among his peers. The grumpy, old teacher gave him an ugly look before accepting the new student’s request.Bookmark here

She slowly walked to the empty desk. He gulped when she took a seat next to him. Bookmark here

He sent me here to retrieve from this world,” she whispered. Blending like any other student, her knowledge of the other world intimidated Kotaro. Bookmark here

White limestone met the green board, crashing into each other and creating art, and a badly detailed map was shaped. Loud growling, always filled with the tension of anger, caused the class to remain silent, but the tiny conversations weren’t over. Bookmark here

“You will remain in Densetsu for the rest of your life to keep our world a secret.”Bookmark here

“Kotaro! What year did World War I start?” Bookmark here

He was startled by the teacher. Mr. Wilcox often called students to review what he was currently teaching. Some found it useful; others found it terrifying. Bookmark here

“1939?” he answered. Bookmark here

“That’s World War II,” then Mr. Wilcox murmured to himself before asking the same question to the next student. “Noel, what year did World War I start?”Bookmark here

The new student stood up from her seat. Everyone turned their attention to her, confused. Silence filled the room. The teacher waited as he constantly stepped on the floor. Bookmark here

Kotaro waited to hear her. Coming from another world, she couldn’t know the answer. Bookmark here

“World War I, also known as the Great War, started in 1914. The cause? Assassination on the Archduke. This war lasted for four years on the eleventh of November.”Bookmark here

Her peers were awed in silence. Mr. Wilcox smiled which was rare. “Correct.”Bookmark here

Unlike his classmates, Kotaro reacted differently. Noel glanced at him. She said a few words that struck deep in him. Her knowledge of this world transcended beyond her own. It terrified Kotaro the fact she had knowledge about his world. Bookmark here

Class ended peacefully, yet Kotaro was left dumbfounded. He hardly remembered what Mr. Wilcox was teaching other than Noel’s impressive knowledge. Even walking at this moment, he could feel her presence.Bookmark here

His head raised before he turned around. The new student casually walked behind him without saying a word which startled him. Bookmark here

“Why didn’t you say anything? You scared me!”Bookmark here

“You’re not leaving my sight. After all, it’s my mission to send you back to Densetsu.”Bookmark here

He wasn’t planning to return. Quickly turning around, he readied himself to run. Bookmark here

“Don’t even think about it. You can’t run away from me. No matter how hard you try.”Bookmark here

“What are you? An alien?”Bookmark here

Noel scoffed, “you will never understand.” Bookmark here

His head dropped to the floor. Bookmark here

“But you know, if you come with me, everything will become clear.”Bookmark here

He raised his head; her black stockings reaching up to her thighs, her azure shorts, her white shirt coated with an azure jacket; her small neck, then paused when seeing her only pink lips.Bookmark here

“My master can teach you all the things you need to defend yourself!” and he met her azure eyes again. They were the skies. A closer look, both her eyes were different from each other. Her left eye was a darker blue. “Oh, I almost forgot. I’m still new around here, so do you know where Mr. Praum’s class is?”Bookmark here

Coincidence or fate, the two souls seemed destined to be together. Before his mouth moved, a slight image of a younger and rounder girl emerged into his sight. The background briefly changed into an unknown meadow before returning back to the hallways. He paused. Bookmark here

“What’s the matter? You look like you’ve seen a ghost or something.”Bookmark here

He shook his head. “I was just daydreaming…again…” His eyes swayed from the new student. “I saw a younger version of you, but she was more f—big…”Bookmark here

Her eyebrows furrowed, face flushing in scarlet. “You know what? Forget about asking you for directions! I’ll ask somebody else!”Bookmark here

“H-Hey, w-wait! I didn’t mean it like that. I happen to have amnesia!”Bookmark here

“And why should I believe that?”Bookmark here

His memories darkened and emptied, consisting only of the jubilation of times with the Wilsons. From then on, new memories were forged—some of them happy times and sad ones. Overall, he failed to remember the other life. Bookmark here

But that other world—Densetsu—fragments of his childhood lied within it. Bookmark here

“My parents found me in a seashore. I don’t remember how I got there, but they saved me. I was scared, but my mom was here for me. It was then they decided they wanted to be my parents.”Bookmark here

“That’s sad,” she replied, “but I like it!”Bookmark here

“You do?”Bookmark here

She nodded. “I finally decided!”Bookmark here

“On what?”Bookmark here

The new student burst into his personal space, but he retreated at a fixed distance. “I’ll help learn about your memories!”Bookmark here

“B-but!”Bookmark here

“There was another reason why I came here,” she added. Bookmark here

“Another reason?”Bookmark here

“There’s this child I knew!”Bookmark here

“A child?”Bookmark here

“Yes, we made a promise to each other if we ever meet again,” she pressed a single hand into her other hand. Her eyes closed. “I know he’s in this world. That’s why I’m going to find him and fulfill our promise that we made as children.”Bookmark here

He remained speechless for a while. Nobody knew of his story, not even his friends to which he feared they’d taunt him for it. She was the first, to help and to listen. Bookmark here

“Then I decided, too!” he blurted.Bookmark here

“Decided on what?” Bookmark here

The tides had turned. “Since you’re helping me, I’ll help you find this boy!”Bookmark here

Noel was awed to see reminisce of her childhood friend within this teenager whom she met today. Scarlet flushed her cheeks, and she avoided eye contact. “W-Whatever, do what you want! Take me to Mr. Praum’s class now!”Bookmark here

“Why are you getting mad so quickly? I really want to help!”Bookmark here

Words couldn’t be expressed around him. She searched through her brain for a reply, but there was nothing. “Just take me to class!”Bookmark here

Kotaro complied with her decision. After all, he was heading there too. Somewhere out there, his memories laid dormant in that world. Somewhere in here, a certain boy remained in this world. A new journey carved a new path for the two, combining into a single path. Several students passed by, and the two were quickly mistaken to be a couple. Bookmark here

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