Episode 6: the Empress' Favor
14th of Umbralis, 4:99 East
Milly had always been an early bird, unlike Maya. Father said it was because Maya was lazy that she would sleep all day if you let her, while Mother said it was because she stayed up so late. Either way, Milly knew why: Poor Maya always looked so sad and it kept her up so late, and the fact she was always forced to rise with the sun often made her sick. But Father knew that the best way to fix the 'sleep weakness' was through hard work, so Maya was always working.
But Amelia Tyron, future novelist, would not let her beloved sister work hard and never have fun! So she woke up early and snuck into her sister's bed chamber. Gently, she called her name. "Mimi. Mimi! Maya, wake up!"
Maya yelped and shot up, her hair messy and out of its usual braids. Milly always loved Maya's rosy hair, and she never understood why Mother made her hide it. She made Milly hide hers, too, of course, but Milly's hair was curly and tangled easily.
"Amelia! What are you doing?" The eight-year-old asked.
"Come on! Let's go play in the gardens!" Milly said almost too loudly.
Maya quieted her, but she got out of bed and dressed quickly. They ran down the stairs and into the garden, where the moon lilacs were closing up and the sun roses had turned towards the ever-so-distant sunlight. Milly and Maya pretended to be faeries as they leapt between the flowers, picking up dirt to sprinkle like pixie dust.
Milly had never seen Maya so happy. There was a light in her eyes she'd hidden. Maya was so happy being outside, dancing in the sun, laughing. Maybe Father was wrong. Maybe freedom would cure Aelita's sleep weakness.
But no good thing could last. "MAYA!" Father's voice bellowed from above. Maya froze and shrank. She frowned at her sister before running inside.
14th of Eluviesta, 5:09 Guardian
Laura was so deep in her library that even she didn't know exactly where she was. Spread out on the large, generously lit table in front of her were what few maps of the Uncharted South her library had. All of them seemed old and none of went further than the northern most part of the territory. Still she scrutinized every one, looking for something specific. Christophe had once mentioned a city called Ngemby, but it was either too far south to be on the crude maps she possessed or it was too small to be considered noteworthy.
She yelped when Jeremie snuck up behind her. "Judging by his accent and the knowledge Vigilance has given me, Christophe is most likely from a country called Mesoaiyuttos, a desert country famed in the South for the fertile fields that are flooded by the rivers, and their sculptures." He said, his eyes glowing slightly. "However, the gods he invokes are from ancient Oupavoxeivos, or it's more modern name, Syelkimba. That's likely where Ngemby is."
She whirled around to face him. "And how would Vigilance know that?" Laura demanded.
Jeremie took a step back, raising his hands to show he was harmless. "When I'm asleep, Vigilance wanders in the Beyond, peaking into dreams and memories. He's been doing this long before I was even born, and so he knows the nuances of many cultures." With a smile, he added, "When the war is over, I'd like to take Aelita to the South. There are so many things to see there that no one from Medieuropa has seen, and Vigilance tells me that the elves there are more accepting."
The Empress sighed. "Don't get lost. I need you in court." He seemed confused so she clarified, "Who else can tell me who plans to assassinate me from three kilometers away?" Jeremie laughed. He'd been smiling so much more lately. It was nice to see but also, in some strange way, disconcerting.
"Maybe you shouldn't work so hard. Have you relaxed at all since we came back?" The Wise Man suggested.
"A little. Between trying to coordinate war efforts and fixing and growing an empire, I've got too much to do to be relaxing."
Jeremie nodded in response and a moment of pregnant silence opened between them. Just as the Fair was about to turn back to her maps though, he brought up the subject that had brought him here. "Laura, I know that you're experimenting with blood magic." Jeremie said firmly. "Are you taking precautions? What kind of demon is it?"
"I--" She seemed angry for a moment before realizing spreading falsehoods to a human lie detector was pointless. "It's a pride demon, I think."
"That's dangerous." He warned.
"You don't think I know that?" The Fair shouted. Quietly, she added, "I am so afraid of it. But I can't stop."
"It's an addiction. That's how they get you." The Wise Man said. "You should talk to Aelita. Maybe she can mentor you."
"I would love to talk to Aelita about blood magic, but she'll think that I'm trying to hurt or insult her. And I can't blame her for thinking that." She pulled her arms in. "I am so... I don't know how to approach her."
Jeremie took Laura's shoulder. His face was stony as he said, "As an equal."
30th of Cassus, 5:01 Guardian
Milly knew that her first novel would be based on Maya. But what could she write? Maya only ever stayed in the house and did chores. She didn't go on adventures. She didn't seem the adventurous type.
The only solution Milly, Ace Reporter, could conceive was to ask her sister what sort of adventure she would go on. She grabbed charcoal and a roll of paper and found her sister in the kitchen. However, instead of preparing dinner, she was on the floor, crying into her hands. The side of her face was bloody, and it appeared to be swelling. "Maya!" Milly shouted, coming to her sister's aid.
"Oh, Milly, you shouldn't see me like this." Maya sobbed.
"I was just asking if he'd teach me... teach me to..." She started crying harder. "Oh gods, Milly! Why am I so terrible at everything?!"
Her younger sister comforted her. She hugged her tightly and quieted her sobs. "Thank goodness I came in when I did." Milly said when the swelling went down some. When Maya asked why she'd come in, she explained.
Maya was quiet for a very long time. "I would want to turn into a bird and fly far, far away. So far that nobody would ever find me ever again."
14th of Eluviesta, 5:09 Guardian
'As an equal', Jeremie had said. Laura abandoned her heavy gowns and jewelry. She let her hair down and dug out the clothes that she had worn so often when they first travelled around Lyoko. They were, however, still too fine of quality. She would come off as too 'princessy'.
She asked one of the servants who was about her size to loan her some plain clothes, and she was given a dark blue tunic and an evergreen shawl with a hood. She wore a black skirt and unadorned boots as well.
Hoping her more modest appearance would make her come across as more humble, she wandered through the castle until she found Aelita in the garden.
Judging by the stacks of books next to her, Aelita was supposed to be practicing reading, but instead she looked out over the flowers. They were all dried from the drought, and every so often Aelita would conjure water to help them. She wore a long dress, the top half black and the skirt was long and decorated with tight magenta roses.
"Can I help you?" The Outcast asked rudely.
"Yes. I mean, I hope so. But it's a really big secret." She rubbed her arms. "I need your help."
"Why? Are you trying to seduce Christophe or something?"
"Minerva's mercy, no!" Laura said with flushed cheeks. "This is... about blood magic."
Aelita stood and turned. "Blood magic?" She asked flatly. She searched Laura's face for any signs of deception, of mockery or of cruelty, but found none. Instead it was colored with a hundred shades of fear and worry. "Don't tell me that you..."
"Yes. I am." Laura took a few steps closer.
"Are you crazy? If you're discovered, you'll either be tried for corruption and executed, or even worse, create a country ruled by blood mages!"
"And that's why I need your help!" She shouted, and then calmed herself. "You kept your secret hidden for months from us, and years from many others. I need your help, Aelita, or I'm going to die, or worse." Aelita seemed conflicted, which she couldn't blame her for.
The Fair waited for a very long time as Aelita wrestled with the idea in her mind. Eventually she grew impatient.
"I'm the fucking Empress. What do you want in exchange for your help?"
"I want freedom for the slaves of Lyoko and reparations." Aelita said quickly, as if she'd blurted it out before thinking.
"I was already going to do that. You repeating it won't make it happen any faster." Laura rolled her eyes. "What do you want?"
"Exclusive bragging rights! 'Haha, I was right, blood magic is useful' and all that." She added.
"You are not very good at this, are you." Laura rubbed her temples. "I offer... an official position in my court. Something like... Ambassador of the Elvhen to the Imperial Court, or Arcane Enchanter to the Empress, or something. A position offering real political power."
"You are not good at this! You could've driven your price higher!"
Aelita blushed. Laura couldn't blame the Outcast for her less than perfect negotiation skills. She'd had to fight for everything she had. She looked away, and the elven girl asked, "Can I ask you for a favor?"
"Will you... heal my scars? Please?"
Laura laughed. "I recall you saying something along the lines of, 'don't you touch me, Imperialist'."
The Outcast flinched. However, she recovered quickly and retorted, "I recall you saying, 'if your savage parents hadn't abandoned you, you would've known not to accept the proposal of a demon'."
"Minerva's mercy, did I sound that bad? I'm turning into my father!" The Empress shuddered.
Aelita waved her off. "No, your father was a different breed of ignorant--the kind that wouldn't try to learn." She pulled her arms in. "It's just... I'm starting my life over, Laura! And so long as I'm doing it... I just want a clean slate and..." She started to walk away. "This is stupid. Forget I said anything."
But the Empress caught her shoulder and smiled gently. She said in a voice that was almost motherly, "It'll take longer than it should because of the blood, but yes, I'll help you."
20th of Eluviesta, 5:03 Guardian
The door to Maya's bedchamber was still open, and Milly quietly peeked inside. She saw her sister, her bonnet thrown lazily to the side, focusing on a flower pot. Maya held out her hands and took a deep breath in. The flower grew tremendously, budding and blossoming within a minute.
Maya let out a small cheer, and to Milly's surprise, the break in her concentration did not result in the flower wilting or shattering the pot. "Wow! You're getting really good!" Milly encouraged.
Her sister jumped. "Amelia! What are you doing?"
"I came to ask if you wanted to hang out with me today, so I can get more material for my story." Milly said.
Maya ran towards the door and held it. "Go away, Milly." She said cruelly. Maya slammed the door shut with all of her might, ice collecting on the door frame. It would later permanently damage it.
Milly was frozen for a few moments. "Okay, bye." She finally said quietly.
14th of Eluviesta, 5:09 Guardian
Laura had taken them down a level in the castle, not so close to the dungeons but still rather secluded. The walls were plain stone with no ornaments that made the place look homier. There were a few dark windows and a fireplace, but still the atmosphere was cold. It seemed fitting. Aelita presented the Fair with her dagger, the one she'd taken from James Finson, and Laura couldn't help but wonder why she had kept it for all those years. Was it a reminder, or a trophy? "You should always keep a blade with you. It will act as secondary defense, and it can draw blood more quickly than your teeth or nails." She smiled briefly. "Cutting your hand or wrist is traditional, but you'll experience less pain if you cut your leg."
"Good to know." Laura said. She looked around the room, taking note of the dim fire in the hearth, and the tinted windows. "So what's lesson number one?"
"That depends. What are you looking for?" Aelita asked. When Laura didn't answer, she clarified. "I was looking for freedom. Most people are looking for power. Some think it'll make them better mages. The list goes on."
"I'm not sure what I'm looking for." She admitted.
The Outcast sighed. "Then we'll start with some things that'll make you a better healer. Blood magic can make blood transfusions easier, if they're necessary, and can sterilize open wounds, often even making them heal faster, though it leaves scars. You should also know that you can send isolated distress signals with blood magic." She sat down on the floor, stretching out. "All of this causes pain, however."
"Those seem like things doctors should know." Laura said. "People might be less afraid of them." Although the threat of pain was still frightening, she noted.
"Maybe," Aelita murmured.
18th of Solis, 5:03
Milly watched as Maya and Murray were dragged away towards the Oubliette. She was so scared, but Maya was not. She was angry and hurt, and she could not tear her eyes from the Knight Templar. Milly fearfully looked at the pyre where the elven Hahren burned, but she could not keep her eyes on it.
Eva Skinner started to run after the magistrates who had arrested her friends, wanting them to either release them or take her with them. Her mother ran and grabbed her shoulders, holding her back. Father grabbed Milly and forced her to watch Edna burn, a sight she would see every night in her dreams for years to come.
14th of Eluviesta, 5:09 Guardian
Aelita showed nonviolent forms of the magic. She could use it to dispel barriers and, in a strange turn of events, could use it to cleanse cursed objects but said it was so rare and difficult that it was hardly worth mentioning. She also noted that she was incapable of doing so, or she would have tried to fix Yumi's mask.
Laura was amazed that blood magic could cleanse. She thought it could only corrupt. Aelita explained that it was supposed to lure spirits towards the curse and then away, but again added she'd never accomplished it.
18th of Molioris, 5:05 Guardian
Milly slowly opened the door to Maya's bedchamber. She wasn't there. She hadn't been for two whole years. The town hated the Tyron family now, for allegedly hiding an alleged blood mage. It was all allegedly. But Milly maintained Maya was not a blood mage, and if she was, she had her reasons.
The young author sat down on her sister's bed, and then fell back. "Happy name day, Maya." She muttered. She would've been thirteen years old.
Milly then began to sob uncontrollably. Oh, poor Maya! She must have hated the entire town by now, if she still lived! The young girl covered her eyes and wept into them. She was unsure of how long exactly she lay weeping in Maya's chamber but she knew that it was getting closer to dinner. Crying for so long left her hungry, and so she finally stood, straightened the blankets and left the room.
She walked closer to the kitchen and froze to listen to her parents. "...should have let her stay here. She's a disgrace. I should have let you kill her." Mother said, anger obvious in her voice. Quieter, she added, "No, I don't mean that. But..."
"We should have kept her in chains," Father said.
"She would have escaped anyway!" Mother argued. "Ugh, I was a fool to ever think a bitchborn changeling could ever be a part of this family."
This news startled Milly. Maya was a changeling? Of course she knew that she and Maya were not related by blood, anyone with eyes could see it. But Milly had always assumed her parents had adopted Maya out of the goodness of their hearts. Now she heard that Father had wanted to kill her when they found her, that she should've had a human sister?
Milly ran away and closed herself up in her chamber. She thought for a very long time. Who was this mysterious sister? Was she more like Milly than Maya was, or less? If she was, would that be a good thing or bad?
No, Amelia thought finally, it didn't matter who her blood sister was. Maya was her real sister, and she was going to either find her or die trying, that was for damn sure.
Milly grabbed a pack and shoved it full of clothes. She snuck into her parents' chamber and stole almost all of the money in the emergency jar. She folded up clothes and blankets, stashed in her notebooks and wrapped her charcoal. Then she tied a rope to the post of her bed and climbed out the window.
14th of Eluviesta, 5:09 Guardian
"Using your blood as a weapon is a dangerous thing. Every drop you waste makes you weak. I prefer to use my blood only as a catalyst and then turn my foe's blood against them." Aelita said as she sliced at her hand. Fire engulfed her body. "But Hunger showed me other ways."
Laura watched intently as Aelita demonstrated a blood sword. It was capable of many different forms, such as rapier, longsword and even a Zweihänder, even though demonstrating this left her weaker. She collapsed the sword and created a ring around herself. She explained how it could be used to deflect attacks or as a weapon.
Aelita turned away and began throwing punches at the air, causing blasts of her blood to strike at the wall. One such blast actually left an indent in the stone walls.
The Outcast demonstrated a few more techniques, such and a shield and a throwing spear, before she fell to her knees and closed the wound on her hand. "Forgive me, this is exhausting." Aelita apologized.
"But it is useful." Laura said, helping her to her feet. "Does Hunger speak to you when you use blood magic?"
"Yes. And Pride will speak to you." She confirmed. "But just remember to counteract its logic. For me, I think of how happy I am with the things I have to fight desire. You must remain humble."
"You've met me, haven't you?" Laura joked. Oddly, Aelita laughed. "Come on, it's getting late. How about we go out to a tavern, to avoid having to explain to the others why we were together." She mentally added that the two reeked with the scent of blood magic, and many if not all of the people they'd eat with would notice.
"Is the chef not making your favorite foods?" The elven girl mocked. Laura rolled her eyes and helped Aelita out of the castle. Eventually the Outcast could walk well enough on her own that Laura's help was awkward and redundant.
Aelita had to admit, the Fair was being almost nice to her. It was strange and uncomfortable after everything the two had put each other through. Out of everything that had happened, it was blood that was bringing them closer.
The tavern was small, and no one recognized them, which was a blessing. They found a table in the corner. The waitress came over and greeted them. "Welcome to the Rampant Cat, my name is Veronique, what can I get for you? And don't say mead or rum. We haven't gotten a shipment of that yet, not until next week. And don't say whiskey."
"When are you getting a shipment of whiskey?" Aelita asked.
"Oh, no, we have whiskey, it just tastes terrible." The waitress said. The bartender heard this and shouted for Veronique to be quiet.
"We actually would just like something to eat." Laura said with a half-smile. The waitress seemed surprised but listed the day's specials. The two Heroines ordered and waited.
They sat in silence for a long time. It was driving her mad, so Laura said, "So. How much of what Edna taught you did you work into your... routine?" She was talking about blood magic. Aelita didn't realize that.
"Very little. Edna more or less taught me how to straight up fight, but you learn how to be more fluid and get more power from what Mamae Asha taught me." Aelita was talking about dancing. Laura didn't know that.
"Ah. I... see." Laura shifted and was quiet for a moment. "Then are you going to teach me those things?"
Aelita's cheeks turned red. "I don't see why you'd need to know the things I was taught."
"I just thought it would be useful to know how you fight, so I could incorporate it into my own fighting style."
"Wait." The Outcast furrowed her brows. "What are we talking about?"
She burst out laughing. "Oh, yes, that makes so much more sense!" The waitress returned and gruffly dropped off their meals, leaving without a word. "I thought that you were asking me about my routine at the Gypsy. For Christophe."
Now it was Laura's turn to have red cheeks. "Nononononooo! That's not it at all!" She buried her face into her hands and then shoved a forkful of food into her mouth. Aelita laughed again before eating.
Laura, trying to hide her embarrassment, finished eating long before Aelita did, and spent the free time afterwards explaining why she was sorry for insinuating that she teach her that, albeit accidentally. Aelita, on the other hand, just seemed to grow more exhausted. Eventually, she put her head down and started to sleep.
"What's wrong? Did you get drugged or something? You didn't have anything to drink..." Laura said. Aelita didn't stir, and so she examined the tavern. They were few people in it, and no one was watching them. Then she spotted the waitress. Either Veronique had gotten a haircut in the short time they'd been in the Rampant Cat, or this woman was not her.
The waitress noted that Aelita had fallen asleep and went behind the bar. She strapped on a breastplate engraved with the symbol of the magistrates. Laura threw coins onto the table and grabbed Aelita. She then ran out of the tavern.
She dragged Aelita through the dim and partially rebuilt streets of the Capital for a long time before ducking into a rubble strewn alley. Panting from the effort, she considered leaving her there for half a second before banishing the thought. Instead she glanced around the deserted alley then removed her tunic and shawl as well as Aelita's dress. She quickly switched their clothes, making sure that the hood was pulled over Aelita's head. The pink hair was a dead giveaway.
Satisfied that Aelita was adequately disguised and still feeling exhausted the Fair again dragged Aelita's limp body through the streets of the Capital. A glance back showed that she hadn't lost the magistrate and as the armored figure moved closer The Fair began to panic. Luckily, she found a crevice caused by an explosion, and she shoved Aelita into it before crawling in herself. She covered her mouth with her hand, and tried to regulate her breathing.
The magistrate walked past, but she seemed preoccupied. She looked around as Laura prayed that they went unnoticed. Aelita grunted, adjusting her position. The magistrate moved for the sound. Laura, frightened by her sudden movement, started casting a fire spell. It launched too quickly and filled the narrow street with a sharp crack and bright blue light. Blinded, deafened and disoriented by the lightning bolt, the magistrate stumbled back, and while she was awfully confused, Laura didn't look a gift horse in the mouth.
She was running once again, and she quickly went through a list of places where they could hide. However, the magistrate caught up with them, grabbing the tunic that Aelita had been made to wear. Laura yelped as the Outcast was ripped from her shoulders. She turned and slashed at her foe with Aelita's dagger, cutting at her face. She then cut her own wrist, summoning the blood like Aelita had taught her--it was a more potent weapon, after all.
She created a circle of blood and threw punches. The magistrate dodged some of the blood blasts, but more than one struck at her breastplate, and one struck her leg, bringing her to her knee. Laura rushed forward and kicked the magistrate's head, knocking her out. She considered killing her, but she closed the wound and simply left her out on the street. Killing a magistrate would bring too much attention, not that, she thought gruffly, her obvious use of blood magic had made the situation any better.
Laura picked Aelita off of the ground and began to run. She didn't stop until she reached an inn, the Old Fox, and she ducked inside. She went up to the innkeeper, who was polishing glasses, and slammed three gold pieces on the counter. "Give me your most secluded room, and pretend we aren't here." She said firmly.
The innkeeper was surprised, but since average fare for a room was ten coppers, she obliged. "Kader! Bring them to the attic room!" She called to her son, who stood and led the girls upstairs. Laura gently placed Aelita on the bed, and she sent a distress signal with blood to Jeremie. When he telepathically contacted her, she simply said that that they would be spending the night at an inn and not to worry.
15th of Eluviesta
Aelita stretched as she woke, and she jolted up when she didn't recognize her surroundings. She started breathing heavy until she saw Laura, asleep in the chair across the room. Aelita went through the night's happenings, and she realized she didn't remember leaving the tavern. Mamae Asha had warned her about such a thing a long time ago, but she didn't remember drinking anything, not even water. It must have been in her food, but she doubted any random person could just handle someone's food. An employee, then, she thought.
She shook her head, and realized that whatever happened to her, Laura had prevented anything else from going wrong. She also realized that Laura was wearing her dress. Aelita stood and walked over to the Empress, and she tapped her forehead. "Psst. Laura."
"Hmmm? What is it?" She murmured sleepily.
"I want my dress back. It's got roses on the skirt and it's my favorite." She whispered.
Laura curled her nose in her sleep. "Later!" She hissed as she swatted Aelita away. The Outcast giggled. She was quiet for a moment and then tapped the Fair again. "What?" She asked in an annoyed voice. "I'm tired. Leave me alone!"
"My scars. You haven't healed my scars yet." Aelita reminded her.
"Can it wait until later? I'm tired!" Laura sounded desperate. Such was the way of sleepy people, Aelita thought. She picked up Laura and carried her over to the bed. The Fair was asleep before the Outcast had a chance to tuck her in. Aelita moved to the chair Laura had fallen asleep in and started to meditate. She tried to remember the face of the waitress, but while Veronique's face was still fresh in her mind, her peripheral memories didn't show Veronique. It was someone else, but Aelita couldn't quiet picture her face.
Several hours passed before Laura woke up. "Good morning!" Aelita greeted, and then with a smirk, she added, "Or should I say good afternoon?"
"Shut up." Laura said. At first Aelita thought that their bonding had been for naught, but then she realized the command was sleepy, not rude. "You were saying something, weren't you? I can't remember."
"My scars," Aelita said.
"Oh! Right." Laura nodded as she stood. She wobbled for a moment before she caught her balance again. She was still for a moment as the dizziness faded, and then she motioned for Aelita to sit down on the bed. The Outcast did so, and she removed the tunic and shawl. Her face turned bright red.
This wasn't the first time that Laura had seen Aelita's scars. The first time was at Marsy. It was still disturbing, to see the personal effect of something that you couldn't stop. But she had to be strong. She raised her hands and wove the healing spell, slowly but surely, the scars started to fade. As they faded, Aelita grew more relaxed. This, Laura thought with a smile, could only be a good thing.
Milly opened a box of journals that she'd been keeping since she left to find Maya. Her apartment was a mess, boxes everywhere and only her clothes were unpacked, though they were thrown into a corner to be dealt with later. She opened up one such journal. It was from when her journey first started. She'd written so much about wanting to return home at the beginning. She'd missed warm beds and meals. But she was determined to find her sister, and that search had brought her to Capital Lyoko.
Milly had been in the same party as Maya only a few months ago, though she didn't know it. Milly had seen her father at that party and left immediately, not wanting to get caught and dragged back to Falcon's Bridge. Still, the night had not been a total loss-she'd danced with the most handsome boy she'd ever seen. She swooned at the memory and wondered where he was now.
A knock came to her door, which Milly was wary of, since no one should have known that she was there. She grabbed her crossbow and loaded it, hiding it behind the door as she opened it. Eva Skinner stood in her doorway, dressed in a simple red plaid shirt, brown pants and leather boots. "Eva!" Milly exclaimed, gently placing the crossbow on the floor as she hugged an old friend. She looked down at her plain blue tunic and pink stockings. "I'm so sorry! Me and the place are a mess. I'd have cleaned if I'd known you were coming."
"It's okay. I only dropped by to speak to you, anyway." Eva said as she entered the room. Eva was the only person who knew of Milly's quest, and she had been sworn to secrecy.
"I can't help but feel like I'm close." Milly said after closing the door. She smiled. "I can hardly wait to see Maya. I'll bet she's more beautiful now than ever."
"She was in Falcon's Bridge a few months ago." Eva murmured as she looked around the apartment. It was obviously a temporary arrangement. There were only boxes of things and furniture that was provided by the landlord. Nothing that said 'home'. Not a single personal item, not even a piece of art on the wall. "She was travelling with some wanderers, or so I heard. No one really noteworthy."
The young girl spun around. "She was? How long ago?"
"Last I saw her, it was the 1st of Parvulis."
"Ugh! I was all the way in Cahlere." Milly groaned. "Have you seen her here? In Capital Lyoko?"
Eva smiled as she stood. "Actually," She said as she took a few steps forward. "I have. Almost chased her down, too, but she was gone before I could even say her name."
"Do you know where she was staying?"
"No, but I think she might have been travelling with one of the Empress' handmaidens." She sighed. "I don't think she'll speak to me. We ended on a tense note last time. But if you want to find her, all I ask is that you contact me soon after."
Milly took Eva's hands. "Of course, Eva. You miss her too."