Sora realized something important.
“I don’t mean to be rude, but when are we going to start moving?”
Alex flushed a little and knocked on the roof a couple of times. The carriage started to move and Alex explained himself.
“Sorry, I was just excited about meeting you.”
Sora shook his head.
“I’m not criticizing you for anything you know.”
Alex sighed and Victoria giggled.
“He always gets excited when he meets someone new.”
So, Alex was one of those people huh? Somebody who always wanted to meet new people. Sora looked into Alex’s big blue eyes and saw only innocence in them. Did he even get into one fight in his life before? He saw Alex start to blush and Sora asked a question that was bugging him. He turned to the girl,
“How did you know that I’m good looking?”
The girl looked at him like it was obvious.
“Your skin, it’s completely unblemished and your hair is gorgeous. I took a guess that your face is equally good looking and you confirmed it.”
Sora sighed, he got played. Alex laughed,
“Yeah, she has that effect on people, you’ll feel like an idiot at first but after a while, you learn a few things from her.”
That gave Sora a little reality check, he knew weapons and traps of all kinds well, but he still had lots to learn about people. He was thinking when he saw her reach out to touch him. He jerked back into the corner of the carriage and she raised her hands in surrender.
“I’m sorry! I should’ve asked you for permission.”
Victoria did look sorry so Sora decided to forgive her. She didn’t mean any harm, he thinks.
“You just surprised me is all, what do you want?”
“I want to see your face to see how beautiful you are.”
Alex nodded his head in agreement,
“Yeah! I want to see too! Your hair and hat are covering it all up!”
Sora sighed, what was he? A zoo animal? He shrugged, it’s not like they were going to sell him off, he would kill them the second they planned too. Sora took off his hat and tucked a side of hair behind his ear, moving the curtain of hair to the side. When he looked at the siblings he got a good look at them now that his hair wasn’t blocking them. Alex was really handsome, in the white knight kind of way. It bothered Sora a little, he really looked innocent. It didn’t help that he was blushing hard now. Sora turned to Victoria,
“Well?” he was curious about what they would say. He saw Victoria flush a little too, her face did scream ‘sexy,’ he wondered if she had make-up on. Well, he couldn’t deny that her body would drive men wild, with her bigger than a handful breasts, her slim yet toned arms, thick yet not butch legs and slim body with their narrow hips. Even though she was easily painting worthy she was flushing at his face. What did that say about him?
“You’re beautifully strange.”
Sora raised an eyebrow at Victoria’s words. That was a first, nobody said that about him before. He looked at Alex who nodded.
“Yeah, you’re super hot don’t get her wrong, but if you do a few little modifications on your face you could look like a super cute boy.”
Sora laughed a little, better to tell them now than later.
“I am a boy though.”
Victoria slapped her knee and Alex looked like he got stabbed.
“So that’s what was bugging me! You’re a guy!” Victoria laughed, “I sensed you weren’t a girl!” Sora saw Alex look heartbroken. ‘He didn’t have a crush on me did he?’ Sora thought then dismissed the thought. Of course he had a crush on him, it came with his face after all.
“I can’t believe you’re a guy.” Alex moaned. Sora only shook his head.
“What would make you believe it?”
Alex looked at him and sighed.
“If you say you’re a boy you’re a boy. I’m not going to molest you just to satisfy my curiosity.”
Sora almost felt moved. Sora almost believed his words. He didn’t want to get his hopes up only for Alex to molest him while he slept, that is if he even stayed with them for that long. Still, he smiled at him,
“Thanks, that means a lot to me.”
Alex smiled back and nodded, blushing a little all the while. It seemed that even though Alex knew Sora was a guy his face wasn’t helping things. Whatever, wasn’t his problem yet. Sora was curious about how he rated though, it would help in the future.
“So, how would you rate me?”
The sibling looked at each other, then back at Sora.
“One hundred out of one hundred,” they said at the same time. Sora raised an eyebrow, he knew he looked good but that must be bullshit. The siblings started to quickly explain themselves.
“I know it sounds like a lie but it’s true, you just look that good!”
“Yeah, yeah! If you had a decent outfit on you would make people drool!”
Sora looked down at his outfit. He liked it, it was simple and comfortable. He said so and the girl nodded.
“I know how comfortable it is and while it looks okay, you need to get rid of the cloak, get a new one and also get a vest.”
Sora looked at his cloak, he liked it. It guarded him against the elements well and had some protection against blunt objects, even if it did get tangled when he was fighting soldier boy. He didn’t want to get rid of it. A vest would highlight his small body and make him look even more vulnerable in a fight so he was thinking about it when Alex’s words brought him back into the conversation.
“I’m surprised that you don’t have any armour even though you’re travelling alone.”
Sora raised the sword he took off when he was getting into the carriage, it was impossible to sit down with it still on his hip after all.
“I got my sword, shield and armour all in one.” He said lying, he had his greaves and vambraces, he just didn't want to show them all his cards.
Alex shook his head.
“That isn’t enough, how long have you been travelling?”
Sora thought about it. How long has he been wandering around?
“I dunno, three years or so?”
The siblings looked at him in amazement. This time it was the sister who spoke.
“How old are you? You look like you’re fifteen or so.”
Sora nodded, that seemed about right. When he said so the siblings shook their heads.
“You don’t know how old you are?” Alex asked in disbelief.
Sora got a bit ticked off at his line and tone.
“I didn’t bother to count, I always thought the next day would be my last. My parents also didn’t celebrate my birthday, ‘can’t take a break from making money’ they said.” He looked at Alex deep in the eyes who knew he wasn’t just saying that for pity.
Needless to say, they were shocked. They couldn’t imagine living like that and Alex apologized for his words from earlier. Sora only sighed and accepted it. It wasn’t like they knew his past so why get angry about it? He started to interrogate the siblings, he answered enough of their questions.
“Where’s your destination?”
The siblings looked at each other and the sister spoke.
“Azulth. What about you?”
“I don’t have a destination. I just do what I want and go where I want.”
It was true, he didn’t have a destination. He didn’t even know where he was now so how could he? Even if he knew where he was he couldn’t read a map, or read in general so why bother planning? He saw the siblings sigh and smile, looking at the roof of the carriage.
“That must be nice, go into the unknown, be free to do as you wish,” Alex said, his eyes filled in wonder.
“Yeah, not having to listen to anybody tell you what to do, that seems nice,” Victoria said. She turned towards him. “Hey Sora, what’s it like to wander on your own? Not having anybody tell you what to do?”
Sora thought about it, he decided to do the usual. Blurb out whatever came to mind.
“When you’re walking peacefully alone, just you and the forest or anything peaceful, it’s wonderful. As long as you’re quiet you can hear things that you never could if you had another person by your side.” The sibling’s eyes were beginning to fill with wonder and Sora continued talking.
“When you’re sleeping in the trees and watching the stars you feel so at peace it’s amazing. When you explore a cave or ruin and find something new, you know that you did it. Only you and no one else. Nobody can glory hog. It’s great to be alone.” The sibling’s eyes were now sparkling and filled with wonder.
“However,” the siblings sat up and looked at him. Sora’s face was serious and dark.
“When you’re all alone you’re more likely to get attacked by bandits, animals, slavers and any number of things that want to do you harm.” The sibling’s eyes weren’t sparkling as bright anymore and only continued to fade as Sora continued.
“When you kill bandits in self-defence the group will hunt you down, so you can forget about sleeping easy. Even if you don’t kill anyone animals will ambush you and kill you before you can wake up. You’re always scared to explore ruins and caves because no one will help you if you get into trouble. They will take whatever they can and leave you to rot. People will try and trick you and rob you if you’re lucky, worse if you’re not. It’s worse at night because you’re all alone with only your thoughts and fear to accompany you. You wonder what will happen to you and if you will be able to survive the next day. If you have traumatic memories the solitude and darkness only make the memories seem more real. Don’t even get me started on getting injured with no allies around. The fear, the desperation, the uncertainty of being alone, it isn’t always injuries that kill people. Trust me, only the strongest of mind and body survive alone.”
By the time he was done the siblings lost all sparkle in their eyes. Sora knew they wouldn’t go exploring by themselves anytime soon. Yet, even though they didn’t want to explore alone anymore they saw something in their eyes.
“What?” He said, it was weird how they were looking at him. The siblings shook their head in amazement.
“You travelled alone for three years dealing with all that?” Sora shook his head at Victoria’s question.
“I haven’t even gotten started. There’s more you know?” Alex butted into the conversation.
“That’s just it! You have to deal with all the things you told us and more! Yet, here you are, in one piece still.” Sora shrugged.
“It helped that I have a strong body and honed fighting instincts thanks to my parents.” Alex cocked his head.
“What did you parents make you do?”
Sora only shook head, he didn’t want to answer, and the siblings got the hint. Sora asked them a question instead.
“Why are you going to Azulth? What’s there? It that school thing you mentioned earlier?”
The siblings looked at him for a second then Alex started to explain.
“Azulth has the best school in this continent. It’s famous, you must have really been alone for a long time if you haven’t heard about it.”
Sora lied by omission and simply nodded his head. He was in a city not too long ago, but he didn’t want to tell them that. They might start asking questions. He then heard Victoria start the explanation again and listened,
“The school is famous for producing masters of fighting in any martial art they choose, the name is-“
Sora perked up and put his hand on her mouth. She mumbled and Alex was about to complain when they heard a bloodcurdling scream.