Hellboy III - Chapter 6Since the king and queen of Elfland had been co-ruling from the same headquarters (a first in the very young history of modern human-elf relations), there had been an increase in the number of treaties and amendments signed between the two governments. This particular gathering was to refine, yet again, their land agreements. Since affirming the archaic truce via the U. N., the U. S. had been engaged in a slow battle in which the Elven king and queen asserted their irrevocable right to any non-urban area. Surprisingly, they met with opposition not only from The Purists, whose operations continued to grow, and politicians who saw potential profit in the untapped land, but also from environmental groups, who claimed, ironically, that the land needed to be preserved.
Nonetheless, today's agreement allowed the Elves some 200 square miles of only mildly-tainted (which was to say, formerly toxic) forest in the Northeast. As it was in their favor, Nuala had not foreseen any significant troubl
Rest and Tomorrow - Chapter 3Our house is small, but it appears to be well-built. We spent the day yesterday moving in. I am not sure who lived here before us; I only know that Katsura-san arranged for us to live here for an uncertain amount of time.
This inn seems too rooted down for me. But, it's the best I have for the time being. And I do have a mind for business. As soon as the old man shows me the books, I know what to change. "You're not charging enough. With these prices, you'll attract only the working people. Raise them just a little and you'll be housing more important men." He listens as though I were a sage. "Working people don't make many trips, but the rich are always traveling. Your establishment is good enough for businessmen and government officials, not just the commoners," I add by way of flattery. "The rich customers see your prices and think that your house isn't good enough for them."
One thing never fails: the vanity of the wealthy. Besides that, I've learned that the old man is eage
Rest and Tomorrow - Chapter 2That stupid girl is staring at me again. What part of my appearance does she want me to explain? "What is it?" I growl, hoping to frighten.
"You're not old ..."
The hair. "No. My hair turned white when I was young."
"Because I asked too many questions of my elders."
"What's that mean?"
"Suki," the old woman stands in the doorway of my room. "Leave Yukishiro-san alone." Obediently, the little girl runs off to the woman, who leads her away with an apologetic look to me. Seeing that the girl, Suki, I suppose, managed to bring my breakfast, she bows slightly, closes the door, and leaves.
I appreciate the silence. They've treated me like an invalid here. I guess I have that air about me. People see me and feel like I should be respected, no longer out of fear, but out of the kind of respect that comes from being old or crippled. People speak quietly around me, asking me if I need anything, keeping pesky little brats away from my solitude.
"Forgive me for disturbing you again, Yukishi
Rest and Tomorrow - Chapter 1Takefu.
I can smell the salt from the sea, though the water itself is beyond my sight. This seems like a good choice for now, though it's only a middling distance from the putrid city of Kyoto. Still, I'll stay here for a little while. Until I can figure out what I'm doing.
I only have a few days worth of honest pay with me, but that'll at least be enough for a night in an inn. Wandering the main street, I see one, small place that stands out to me. Away from the busier part of the city, it should at least offer me some solitude.
I'm going to Kyoto. Don't expect me to come back. Take care of father.
I make my way up the stone path to the entrance of the building. As soon as I step inside, a scrawny girl scurries into the hall and greets me. She bows low and speaks so softly that I miss what she says.
The brat shrinks back and repeats, "Welcome to the Ayameya, sir. We hope you enjoy your stay here."
Immediately an older woman, the landlady, I assume, comes out, ignoring t
Hellboy III - Chapter 5Four Years Later
The Chamberlain, busy with his other duties about the palace, was not in the vestibule when the young princess crept in. She would never admit it to Eli and Micah, but the towering, faceless, black-armed guards frightened her. On the occasions her common-law cousins visited her, she walked past the figures with the same exterior ease her parents wore. Now however, with no eyes on her (as the guards certainly seemed to lack eyes), timidity betrayed her.
Her uncle, the ruling King Nuada, had gone inside moments before, and she would never allow him to see her afraid. He had defeated an entire room full of the mammoth black guards, so Mierles had once told her. Though the thought of a crowd of the dark soldiers converging on her lone uncle only served to render them more terrifying.
Odula had been sleeping when the king arrived, and by the time her mother sent a servant to wake her, court had already been called to session. It had taken her time to dry off and dres