Chapter 9 to 'Life of a Half-Roc Child'
|As the final bell rings, Mima goes to her locker to grab a bag with books for her homework and an empty food container in a paper bag before going out of the school gates to see Bella waiting for her.
"Hey, how come you know the time I finish school?" Mima asked.
"I asked the guard at the front. I got a weird look but he answered anyway."
"Hey, Mima!" James called out from a distance with Natasha and Terry by his side.
"Ah, are they your friends?" Bella asked Mima, looking at the approaching children.
"Yep. The red-head is Terry, the blonde one is Natasha, and the brown-haired one is James." Mima answered.
"Nice to meet you three. I'm Bella," Bella said, putting out a hand for each of them to shake. James and Terry reluctantly shook her hand and Natasha shook it without hesitation but shot a weird look for a split-second.
"Mima here told us everything about you. We were worried because two days ago we had a plan to game together in Terry's house but Mima never came and never answered her phone," Natasha explained. "I'm very thankful for your kindness to be her temporary guardian until another family member comes."
There was an awkward silence for a few seconds before Bella said, "No need to thank me. I just did my job to help an innocent soul that had its life taken away from it. Like a second chance. Any divine spirit you believe in is giving her a second chance to live life with another person." Bella might say that but she doesn't believe in what she said. She is someone who you call an agnostic. Why would people think God is someone to praise when he was the one who also led others to suffer? But this is not the time to do philosophy.
There was another awkward silence before Bella called to Mima, "Let's go home, I got a surprise for you later on tonight."
"Alright then. Bye, guys!" Mima shouted.
"Bye!" The trio said together. When they saw Bella and Mima going out of sight, Natasha asked the others, "So? What do you think about Bella?"
"I think she is pretty nice and generous to do that to Mima," James commented.
"I think the same too, but I agree with what Mima said on lunchtime before. I think there must be a connection between the two or an event that made Bella this generous to Mima," Terry added.
"Did you guys give a firm handshake with her? Cuz I did and I felt something weird about her hands," Natasha said.
"No, I don't think I did. I'm kind of a shy person you know?" Terry pouted.
"I did, but I didn't notice anything weird about her hands," James added.
"I'm stupid in the first place to ask you that. You don't notice anything, don't you? I could put a fly on your nose and you wouldn't feel it. What's weird was that when I shook the hand, it doesn't feel fully like skin. It's almost like rubber," Natasha said looking at the others for them to remember the feeling and they nodded in agreement.
"Do you think Bella might be using rubber gloves or something?" Terry asked.
"I'm really not sure. I think she has a very bad skin condition that she wants to hide her looks from the world and wear rubber gloves for her hands," Natasha suspected. Unknown to them, Bell wears those gloves so that other people won't feel her hard skin or talons on her hands.
"We can't assume too much yet. If Mima doesn't know anything about her looks, she must be really valuing her privacy," James ended the conversation before Natasha gets picked up by her parents, James went to the school bus that passes his home and Terry goes walking home.
As Bella and Mima were walking home, Bella was fidgeting a bit while walking. She is wondering how would Mima take the surprise. In 3 days she had spent half of the rest of her savings, but she didn't really care, because she feels like she owes Mima for killing her father which might've led to her mother being killed also. And other than that, Mima is a very fun girl to play with and talk to. She seems to be very easygoing, although this might be because she is grateful to Bella, and seems like a great little sister model.
Mima first couldn't notice Bella's fidgeting, but when she paid attention, she could see that Bella is almost skipping. "How is this surprise different than the others?" Mima asked.
"Because there is a lot of use for this surprise. It might be both for schoolwork and for fun," Bella answered. Mima went deep into thinking on what things can be used for schoolwork and fun, but she has troubles linking the words 'school' and 'fun'.
When they arrived home, which is at about 4 pm, Bella told Mima to shower first and Mima did. When she hears the shower turn on, Bella went downstairs to get the new PC set in her room and set it all up in a few minutes before plugging the power in and turning on the PC. Then she waited.
Meanwhile, Mima in the shower could hear Bella doing something in the room, but ignored it anyway. This is her house. She has every right to do whatever she wants inside. After a few minutes, it stopped, making her curiosity pique even more. Does this have any connection to the surprise? Mima thought, hurrying up. She puts on the clothes she grabbed in the bathroom and went out to see Bella sitting on her bed. She swears she can feel the smile forming inside that hood as she looks around the room and saw the new gaming PC set on her table.
Mima's mouth stood open with shock for a minute before Bella asks, "Do you like it?"
"No, I don't like it... I LOVE IT!" Mima said as she tackle-hugs Bella off the bed. She mutters 'thank you's over and over again before Bella noticed that Mima has tears in her eyes.
"Hey, what's wrong? I thought you loved it?" Bella asked.
"W-w-why are you doing this? Why are y-you being so n-n-nice to me?" Mima asked with red eyes.
"Because... I've been alone my whole life, Mima. With only my father and mother that has any relationship more than being a neighbour or a business client. You filled that hole in my life after 18 years. It's not only me that you should thank. I don't have a strong belief in any kind of deity, but the one you believe in, you should also thank. It's pure luck that you were the kid that I had to save and it was also lucky that I was there to save you. So I'm happy to be your guardian, sister, mother, aunt, whatever you want to call the relationship between us."
"Be truthful s-sis, I can hear that you are hiding something," Mima said.
"I don't know how you do that, but yes, there is another reason. But I'll tell you on your birthday. I'm not sure if I'm ready to tell you yet."
"Heh, I didn't know you had something hidden. That was just a bluff to test you. Guess it succeeded. As for the time you want to tell me, take all the time you want. You have already done enough for me."
Bella broke the hug and did a noogie to Mima's head while saying, "Clever one, aren't you? Kinda ruined the element of surprise though."
"Curiosity killed the cat, right?" Mima joked.
"What does that even mean?" This earned a facepalm from Mima. "I just told you I had no deep social interactions! You can't expect that much from me."
"True, true. Curiosity killed the cat means that prying on other people's business and secrets could get you in a worse situation."
"Ok. Hey, can you do me a favour?" Bella asked.
"It'll only be fair if I returned it," Mima smirked.
"Now that you know I never went to school, can you... make a summary of what you learned every day at school? Each subject? Please? Maybe about half an hour each day?" Bella pleaded.
"I'd happily fill you in on what you're missing!" Mima answered. Bella pulled her into a big hug that got Mima off the ground and struggling to breathe. "I-I c-can-t-t b-b-b-"
"Oh no! I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry! I'm sorry!" Bella blabbered while breaking the hug.
Mima gasped for air before saying, "It's ok, just warn me next time ok? Now, should I tell you first or do my homework first?"
This is their more typical day from now on. They had their fun tonight, playing Call of Duty: Ghosts online but in different rooms. It really made a difference that they couldn't see the screen of the other like in the console. It is clear that they are level. Mima went to sleep first while Bella checked on her windmill.