Artist: Gary Jules - Song: Mad World - Word Count: 892
The Soul Society
Akia could feel her heart beating in her throat. This.. this felt wrong
She knew the second that Hulderic had asked her to aid in his protection that this would happen. She had known this would be the result. She wasn't supposed to go anywhere near such a cursed place. She had sworn to herself she would never venture there. All it had taken was one execution.. seemingly ages ago.. though it was only barely a decade prior.. to make this place a bane to Akia's very being. Murderers
. The word clapped like thunder in her head over and over again. It dominated her thoughts. It consumed her whole self. She needed to be peaceful, neutral, stoic.. she was here as a bodyguard, after all. If fighting broke out, then fighting broke out, but for now, all was quiet, and there was no reason to disrupt that or jeopardize it because of personal bias. She was.. more mature than that. Or, at the very least.. her position required her to act as if she was.
Regardless of her own grudges against the Seireitei, she had agreed to come, and anyone who had met her previously would've instantly known that she was one of the three that approached the gates as they exited the portal. Not from appearance, though hers was certainly distinctive. No. One who had met her could tell that she was coming from quite a distance away, if one simply listened. The silence of the day was periodically broken by the "clack"
of Akia's cane connecting with the ground onto various surfaces. It was quite a hindrance when one was trying to be sneaky, but it was necessary. Unlike some, Akia didn't use her cane for a cosmetic appeal. Akia needed
hers. Desperately. Her leg was useless. The muscle of it twisted, ripped, and essentially shredded. The cause behind this was not one she shared regularly, or openly, with anyone.
Anyone who heard that Akia was here as a bodyguard might find the notion laughable at best. Even beyond the messed up leg, Akia was frail, her shaky stance and white-washed hair evidence of a completely worn out and practically useless form. To anyone who might view her, she would probably seem like easy pickings. Although anyone with a brain
would know not to judge a book by its cover, and this rule goes doubly so for Akia. Cripple or not, she had some pretty vicious tricks up her sleeve.
As she walked next to Hulderic, approaching the gates, Akia's eyes bore holes in the walls of the Seireitei, her gaze locked as she hobbled forward. Would they have to enter? Would they be ALLOWED to enter? This was the inner sanctum of the Gotei, after all... The security wouldn't be anything to sneeze at. Although if it came to blows, they were prepared. That was just.. not the ideal outcome.
Akia breathed out, trying to let some of her stress, fear, and nervous energy go. There shouldn't be anything to worry about. It wasn't as if she was alone here. Raiki had come as well, one of the only Quincy in the whole of the organization that she actually trusted. She knew if push came to shove, he would be more than able to take down the opposition. And, of course, Hulderic, the bellwether for this campaign, was here with her as well. He was the closest thing that she had to a father these days, as he had so willingly adopted her and nurtured her into the Vandenreich, even with her disability, and her history.. She owed the man more than anyone realized, and far more than she would ever let on.
When Hulderic requested for herself and Raiki to rest with him as they waited, Akia happily obliged, sitting herself down and laying her cane across her lap, her deep blue eyes flicking back and forth as she kept herself focused on trying to watch for threats.
And.. speaking of threats.
As the first of those who were sure to come showed up, Akia's eyes widened in surprise as she looked up at the giant of a man. She could feel that he was nothing to be taken lightly, and even if she couldn't, he didn't have
to give off that feeling. He looked
the part of someone you simply didn't mess with. She wanted to be scared, to hide, but she knew that couldn't be what she did. She had to act as if she had been doing this for decades upon decades. She had to pretend that this was something she was used to... because at nineteen years of age, a giant covered in chains... was not normal.. and was, quite frankly, terrifying.
He seemed familiar with Hulderic. She didn't know whether that was good or bad yet... Did he have a grudge against Hulderic? Or was it comradery? Only time would tell, she guessed.
She stayed silent for now, slowly standing back up and propping herself against the tree, cane planted firmly in the ground as she did so, the snake-head handle of the cane itself angled so its eyes were watching the new arrival, just like Akia's was.
And so it began...