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There was a man, and Mirja knew him well. it was a friendly sort of knowing, that Mirja enjoyed having. And then she died and it was sad. The other sadness was that Ulv could remember him having trouble with his Inner Hollow. It made him sick and there were times he had to let it loose to relieve the pressure, or something like that. Mirja's thoughts were vague after all, and somewhat confusingly laid out, it did take quite some translation to even understand what she meant by them. But eventually everything was translated, and that brought Ulv to where she was now.
Having Wind powers and being able to track by scent made it so that there were few hidden people in the world, so long as she knew them from before, she could find them again. And that is exactly what she did, finding her old new friend in the world, and admiring him. He was a slim guy, but there was power in that slim body that Mirja really got to know in their fights. "How's the wrist?" Ulv asked, giving him a soft smile and that stare of a person that knew things.
A small, quaint building, on a warm and sunny island in the Pacific. The only place where a small group of individuals could meet in peace. Well, three of them could meet in peace normally, but the fourth often found himself having a rough relationship with the law. Unfortunately, that man was also a father, and this was one of the few times of the year that he got to see (or: forced) to see his son.
The door of the hut opened gradually, revealing the wiry man on the other side. He may have been quick in battle, but apparently that skill did not transfer to answering the door. His golden hair streamed along his shoulders, and the bright green of his eyes quickly found the auburn haired woman who had found him. "Oy! Who's that, ey?" An Irish accented man could be heard shouting out, as Colin slammed the door closed the door behind him with a small smile, shaking his head from side to side.
"..The wrist, huh?" Colin looked down at his wrist, closing his eyes, trying to remember the last time he… "…Well, my tuba playing's been pretty alright for a while now." He replied, his eyes growing puzzled, and then widening slightly. "…Mirja? Is that you? Did you escape death?" It would not be the first time he had seen a comrade return from death. Hell, he and three of his brothers had been through it. Though Len had not.
It was the Christmas period. The damn thing was tomorrow, so obviously he would have his family over to do things with. Colin never really talked about family, and neither did Len, the other Washi that she had met. The guy got her reference though, which was good because Ulv couldn't handle Colin. Probably everyone else, but Colin was way out of reach right now. Same level of power as Tsubasa, and that was a mountain Ulv wasn't climbing any time soon. "Mmm, no. Mirja's dead. And then Inami destroyed my house! I had all my cool shit there and now I don't have all my cool shit. I got new cool shit instead" she gestured with the gold bracelets around wrists, that unfolded into a pair of gauntlets, glittering in the sun.
"I got Mirja's soul and memories but I also have mine, so I am a different woman with the encyclopedia of everything Mirja ever did. She really was surprised when you got a broken wrist and not a broken...everything. Although I have lost how to do that one. It's a big book, I haven't read everything she's done" Ulv rambled, before shaking her head softly. Unlike Mirja's slender waif-like build, Ulv was muscles. Toned body throughout and a solid set of abs through her shirt.
"But, I have come for a reason. How are you doing these days? Generally and Hollow-wise?"
Way out of reach. Well, Colin certainly stood over the woman in front of him. The man was well over seven feet tall, after all. His face fell at the news. "…Dammit." His face audibly changed, as he looked back at the house, before resting his back against it. His relationship with Mirja, while not the most… devoted, had at least been something he looked at as positive. They had had their ups and downs, but overall she was someone he was glad existed in the world. …And so another person like that falls.
He was silent as Ulv continued to talk. His eyebrows widened quite a lot as she continued to speak. "Your… what?" His eyebrows furrowed a bit, and his gaze moved side to side in confusion. He tilted it completely to one side as she gestured to her golden gauntlets, which seemed… extremely uncomfortable in this pacific sun. For his part, Colin was dressed in a T-shirt with the name of an ancient band lost to time, worn and torn in multiple places from the lengths he had to go to get it. Around his legs he wore a pair of cargo pants, held together by a large belt that had quite a lot sticking out on one end, thanks to how small his waist was.
And of course, there was his tilly/fisherman's hat, resting on his back from the brown string that looped around his neck.
"You got… her soul?" Colin paused for a moment, trying to understand what exactly she was saying. "So you're like… a Ziamichi…? And… Mirja's soul is… inside of you?" He tried unravelling exactly what her statement was based on what he knew about the world. "Sorry, I… need a minute."
The man breathed in, and then out again. He slumped onto the ground, his long legs sticking out as he rested one hand on his knee. He was next to a hut on a beach in the middle of the Pacific; he certainly had no reason to keep ceremony. The reality that Mirja was… dead, and that her soul had been… transplanted was a lot to swallow. "…How did it happen?" He asked at length, looking back up at Ulv. "And… who are you, then? Before she was put inside of you, anyway."
Colin may have been a Vizard with a legendary level of power… but he also was a mild-mannered man. He could lead when he needed to, he could get up close and personal, he was not afraid to bare his teeth. But if he had the choice, he would prefer to just go with the flow, like a bird riding the wind.
"…Did she have a family? Are they okay?"
That was the next question that he had to ask, his eyes turning back to Ulv's muscular frame. She certainly looked nothing like the woman who had broken his wrist previously. She also, physically, looked like she could snap a bean-pole shaped person like Colin as if he were a twig.
At this point, Colin was realizing he genuinely had not known that much about Mirja. Sure, we got drunk together and shot the shit, but… she didn't really talk too much about her past. I don't… think she had a family? He tried to remember, but… well, he had drank a lot of alcohol. Fuck… I don't even remember what we talked about. It was all a bit fuzzy to him, even as he turned his face back to answer her last question.
"A reason, huh…? Well… I'm doing alright. I do believe I'm currently unemployed, or am about to be. I think I'll do fine, though. I've got family, as you can hear behind me. As for me and my hollow…"
Colin's words stopped speaking, as he closed his eyes for a few moments… and as he did, a small noise echoed from the back of his head… as a Schlluuuuu-KUNK! sound let itself known to the world. On the side of Colin's head was his bright blue hollow mask.
"Yeah… we're gettin' along alright. He takes me out to the Wastelands once every few months and we just get CRAZY. You should join us!"
The Eagleman shook his head at that, his hand moving back to the base of the mask before smashing into it, the shards cracking and falling onto the ground next to him. "Well… there you have it…" He was clearly still in a somber mood… He did not know how to respond. He needed more information about what had happened to Mirja. Was this person in front of him evil? Were they good? Did they take her soul maliciously? They did not sound malicious - and they had apparently come to check up on him.
Either way, he did not sense any murderous intent from her. He supposed he would wait to decide if she were a threat to him and his…
There was a lot of questions from Colin. Surprisingly, more than anyone else had asked.They had all just shrugged and accepted it without much. But then, Colin was the least close of all her friends. He was a new friend, where as everyone else had known Mirja for a while. So the questions were understandable. Hopping up and creating a Reiatsu platform to sit on so she was eye-level with Colin, Ulv set in to ponder. How to explain it.....
"Well, most pressing matters first, we don't actually know about the family. Mirja's first memory was being in 4th Division, having just recovered from getting an axe to the head. Trauma-induced amnesia had scrapped away all the past she once had. And despite her fears that it was going to come back one day and replace her with a new woman, it never did. Mirja spent some time looking for parents who were looking for their missing child, but gave up after a decade of not finding her own.
As for how it happened, well. Mirja died. She got crippled by hubris, and only a few people were able to track her down because she wanted to stay hidden, far to proud to let people see her in this helpless state. One of them people was her....I don't even know the relationship they had. Dominant and Submissive maybe, but they were wild things. Anyway, the girl was angry at getting left, and so Mirja told her that she wasn't a being capable of love, she was just a monster that killed things. The girl took it badly and killed herself, so Mirja used her Runes to prevent her from dying properly. Problem being that her crippled body couldn't handle the power and fell apart.
Mirja then went into the Soul Cycle, but some scientist that was obsessed with her had made a Soul Catcher, and it dragged Mirja's soul into this body. Which was floating in a tube it was created in. This is a Homonculus, a body that was artificially grown with science. So I wasn't really anything before the soul came. I was just an empty jar. And suddenly being thrust into full consciousness was a jarring feeling. Didn't help that I had ghost instincts that I was alive long before I was alive - Mirja memories - and an angry voice in my head calling me, or Mirja-me, an idiot for getting us all killed. Took a while to convince Hvit that we weren't all dead and I wasn't a ghost of the afterlife"
Having finished her tale, she looked up at the sky and smiled. She had come a long way since that tube. And was going to come even further. "Hvit doesn't get crazy. She is far to refined for such a thing. But, it does raise the question. Do you still get ill like how Mirja first found you? Because that was pretty ill..."
Colin's expression was somber, his face tilting up and glancing up at the sky. His face and arms had a strong tan to them, but it was not one that he had gained on this island, or even in this region. There was a city relatively close by, about an hour away by ship; but they did not venture this far into the drink, unless they needed to. The legend of an Crazy Irish Catholic who rained down rainbow-colored fire tended to keep them at bay. That was why Colin had been so surprised by the knock in the door in the first place...
"…So she hasn't seen them in a long time, at any rate." Those words were Colin's final judgment on what Ulv had explained to him. It was a bit of a bizarre comparison, with the long-legged man on his behind on the ground, and the muscular woman resting on her own panel of Reiatsu. A whole decade…
She did strike me as a proud individual… but what could have crippled her so badly that even in this modern world she couldn't get better? He did not understand what she was saying about the person who she got involved with. It sounded as though they were lovers of some variety though, considering how Mirja had sacrificed herself to save that person. … At least Mamoru never threatened something like that… Colin thought to himself, glancing up at the sky for a moment, recalling the plant-woman he had once shared his time with.
"…So she died of overusing her power… that sounds like something she would've done." Colin sighed, the reality of his friend's death still weighing on him. "For some reason, science has been a real dick in the last hundred years or so." He commented off-hand, shaking his head again. After all, it was a scientist who had put that hollow inside of Colin, tormenting him for so many years.
"…So you're like a cocoon, but you were already formed and knew what you were going to be before the caterpillar that was Mirja's soul took up residence." He paused for a moment, trying to recall..
"That's right. Hvit was her inner hollow, right? So if that part inside the soul survived, does that Mirja's consciousness did as well? Or is that more merged into your own?" Colin was not a particularly distrustful person. If she said that she had Mirja's soul in her and it was not really her choice, then he would accept that, at least until she did something that seemed aggressive. He decided that, at least for the moment, he should not consider her as a threat.
"Aaah. Yeah.., There was this one time when I found out I was losing my job that sucked pretty bad, but my brothers Alex and Brian managed to help me out of it again." Colin explained with a chuckle, before standing upright. He brought his emotions in check, something he was skilled enough at doing, trying to focus on what was important, giving Ulv a smile. There was still a twinge of concern inside of it, of business that had not been properly addressed... though Colin was the type who preferred to do address those kinds of feelings in private. "…I'm sure I'll have time to mourn her passing later. For now though, I've got a guest! Would you like something to drink? I doubt anything we've got will actually affect your state of mind, but I do have some sake, and beers… just don't give one to the kid." Colin paused for a moment, tapping his chin.
"Actually, that means you don't have much of a family either, do you? Would you like to spend Christmas with us?"
"Mmm, she resigned herself to the fact that they were dead or didn't want her at the end of that decade. Can't have baggage around forever. Got on with life, and eventually death. Which was totally her own foolish fault. Hvit told her that absorbing that Energy on top of everything else she had would not go well at all, but she still did it, and it blew up her Inner World, scouring it harshly so the great plain shattered into twelve shards. Later reformed into twelve Islands, but yea. It was a mess. A real bad mess. Rakki nearly killed herself bringing them back into orbit of the Maelstrom, so it could seed them with life when it went up" She then, realized that he didn't know what that was, and so carried on quickly. "The Maelstrom being the condensed whirling vortex of Mirja's Spiritual Energy. Rakki, being Mirja's girlfriend. And then later my girlfriend"
"Mirja herself is dead. Brain got fried, and that is where most of a person is. Instinct and Important memories latched into the Soul itself, but that's like forty pieces of a thousand piece jigsaw. I had to make the butterfly that was inside my cocoon" She then let out a sigh, the whole Mirja fiasco was a real...fiasco. "As for your Hollow, that is why we are here. I got a cool power from.....Uhhh...Resolve Force came from Ibiki and then we went to see her later and we melded together for Devil's Heart but were did the Flame come?" she frowned, and shook her head. "Whatever, it came from somewhere and now I am doing awesome with it" She ignited her hand in an amber flame. A flame that burned warm and gentle. "I can solve your sickness at it's source. There will be no need to play hot potato with your Hollow anymore, no need to risk such debilitation if you do not balance just right. No need to have your life thrown for a loop by your tenant. It will take a form ultimately of your subconscious chosing, but it will end as something that truly, deeply helps you"
"…It's not good to talk like that about the dead." Colin replied, his eyes narrowing as he looked back at the muscular woman. Whether or not it was Mirja's fault did not matter to the Windy Washi; his eyes closed again, before shaking his head. He really, truly did not understand what she meant by 'islands' and 'seeding them with life'. His own Inner World was a terrific mountain range, and he could not recall actually having damaged it at any point. "… So wait, you hooked up with her after…" Colin was practically rubbing his temples in confusion, or rather, lack of understanding at why someone would want to date the… reanimated soul of their former lover.
"…Nevermind." To be honest, he did not really want to hear that story. "..My hollow, huh?" Colin said aloud, trying to follow what it was she was saying. "…What… are you talking about…?" His bemused expression was all that met her words about Devil's Arts and Solved Forces. "…You don't even understand how your power works? And you're coming to tell try to do something about… mine?" He thought that was actually funny, being able to take his mind off of Mirja's situation, if only for the moment.
"Well… That does sound good. It sounds great, actually. But you did not answer my question. And if you're going to do something like that for me, I'm going to insist you at least let me treat you like a right and proper houseguest for the holidays. If what you're going to do to me isn't that unreasonable, certainly this isn't, either?" Colin wasn't used to talking quite so much at once, but he was frankly feeling overwhelmed. He needed a minute to process what she was saying, as well as more information.
Mostly, he just needed this woman to give him like, five minutes to recharge.
Artist: Scorpins - Song: Rock You Like A Hurricane
"When she was you and the reason you had to spend three months fixing shit that she broke with nothing but a vague and foreboding feeling that you had died before all this life, I get to talk as ill as I want about her" Ulv huffed and crossed her arms, her ample chest sticking out and the muscles in her arms making themselves known from the action. Mirja was a tundra waif, but Ulv was a tanned muscle-girl. Fun for all the family. "And Rakki once said that she loved Mirja beyond death. Only this time it turned out to be more than just romantic flirting and she actually meant it. We are even getting married" she said before suddenly turning to look at Washi like he had grown another head and was spitting bees on fire.
"Ahh! Ulv Brain. I, get caught up in things at times and become one-track. I am spending the holidays with my Fiancee. So to stick around with you I'd need to bring her to you, or you to her. Both, possible things. She is slightly harder to move than your house though, so you to her might be the more doable situation" she giggled softly, cracking a smile and showing off the deep laugh lines on her face. Clearly, a much more jubilant life than Mirja lived. Ulv wouldn't think anything of scooping the house up and scurrying on over to Rakki's City Of Lights for the holidays, she was going to do it with Ari's mansion before being told no.
"Was it… Ugh." Colin dragged his hand down the length of his face, just trying to breathe and get his thoughts in order. He just shook his head for now, deciding to let it go. He was not a particularly stubborn man, unless he thought someone would get hurt if he did not butt in. His expression changed as she said that she was going to get married, legs pushing onto the ground as he rose up onto his feet.
"Congratulations to you and her, then. I'm sure you two'll be just fine." He replied, his eyes widening as she gave him that look. He quickly glanced to either side of him, not seeing anything out of the ordinary. "Well… How about we set a date, then. I don't get to see my family very often, considering we all work in different… industries." He was… moderately subtle. The lines on the side of her face did make him happy as he rubbed at his chin. "Well… Let's do this, then: You go enjoy your holidays with your fiancee, and I'll spend mine with my family. I'll drop by before New Years, if the two of you'll have me, and we can work out whatever it is you've discovered." Relaxed and to the point, Colin explained what was in his head. If there was one thing he was good at, it was management skills… and dealing with individuals like his brothers who were a bit more hyper than most.