Chapter Seven - LeadMature

Leader

By Anonymous Author

Lead by fear,

You are not true.

Lead by hope,

You can never be trusted.

Lead by strength.

You become weak.

Lead by weakness,

And you become strong.

Strong is always the best.

Weak can grow to be strong.

Stand tall for what you believe in.

And soon,

Many will follow.

xxx JOSHUA xxx

"That was pretty fun." I commented as Elodia led me down the hall. Kelpie, who I learned to be Kamyrn, said that I can sleep in one of the extra rooms for the time being. It was an hour before midnight, and I still haven't chosen a gang yet.

But, I started to learn more about the gangs and who's in what. But, there was no time ro think about this, it was still a party going on.

Elodia was wearing some dark purple one shoulder dress, it kinda reminded me of a cocktail dress that a girl would wear to homecoming. Colver and I were wearing some simple nice clothes; I had borrowed mine from someone else.

"It was. Sharpie was fucking amazing!" She grinned, "Right, Colly?"

Colver nodded, still drinking from the juice box. I was able to meet the others; There was a lot of future gang leaders in training and apparently Blackjack had four of them, how he manages it, who knows.

"So... I still don't know a lot about the gangs." I sighed, "And I am in no position to be a leader of one."

"What are you talking about? Of course you are. Actually, it might be a good idea to make one."

"Look a lot of things happened today and I honestly can't think straight. Plus, I'm weak, not very active, and pretty timid."

"Sometimes the weakest are stronger than the very best." Elodia started, "Colver for example. He's the youngest of the future leaders and he's the only level three out of them. But, he's smart and knows what's the best thing to do. Even if it might cause harm."

I gave her a confused look, but looking into her eyes gave me a sense that she was completely serious about what she was saying.

"You really think that?" I asked.

"Of course. I wouldn't lie." She explained, "Anyways, all eleven of us joked about us being the numbers on a clock, but we're missing the magic hour."

"That's twelve, right?"

"Yup."

We continued to walk in silence, until we came across another hallway.

"Are we lost?"

"Nah." Elodia answered, yet she sounded pretty unsure of herself.

"We're lost..."

"No we are not."

"Then where's the room."

Elodia was silent. Looks like I caught her in her little lie, "Okay maybe..."

I chuckled. When I first met her, I was pretty scared. After all, she was a risk zero Illusioner. But I had no clue that she was a dragonfly potential.

"Do you not know how easy it is to fake files? I'm a dragonfly potential, but I'm also not."

"What do you mean?" I questioned, taking a sip of some juice.

"Well, file wise it just says that I'm not a dragonfly potential when I really am. They suck at programming while us here in Veskia are decently ahead. Seriously, have you seen the tech here?" Elodia gestured around the room.

I looked around and found things that I never noticed; HD tvs, holoscreens, and a ton of other tech like floating plates and tables.

"Oh."

"Honestly, did you not notice at all?"

"No... Not really. Still kinda fazed." I sheepishly grinned.

"Earth to Joshua!"

"Huh?" I turned to Elodia just as I crashed into a wall. Falling backwards, I sighed, "Sorry."

"For what? Making a fool of yourself?" She joked, helping me up, "Don't worry. I'll keep this a secret."

"Very funny..." I grumbled as we continued our way as if nothing happened. Colver was walking on ahead, he looked tired. It was going to be midnight soon, so it might be because of that.

"Let's try this room." She pointed to the door next to me as we walked by it.

Nodding, I went to open it and called out, "Hello?"

I froze once I looked in. There stood Pyro, but he... she? Was changing and was now staring at me wide-eyed.

Elodia looked in and sighed as she pushed her way past me before pausing as she entered.

xxx ELODIA xxx

I smiled softly towards Ashton once I entered and held up my hands. Once he realized that I wasn't going to say anything about him, he relaxed a bit. I made my way over to the desk and grabbed one of the tailor's measuring tape. Walking back to Ashton, I slowly took off the bandages that he was using as binding and wrapped the measuring tape around his chest and looked back at Joshua.

"Write these numbers down." I called out and once Joshua was ready, still red in the face, I started to read out the measurements with him writing them down.

Ashton was silent during the ordeal, looking at me through the mirror. He was scared and confused, but he has no need to worry; I am very accepting and respectful when it comes to things like this.

"You should never use bandages for binding, you end up crushing your ribs and it makes it hard to breath. But even with a binder, I recommend to take it off every six or eight hours to give your chest a rest, so you don't hurt yourself. Come by my place on Friday and we'll fit you with a comfortable fitting binder, okay?" I smiled softly once more, "I understand that your parents aren't liking the fact that their once little girl is a handsome young man now, but you shouldn't pay attention to those who don't support you. If anything, prove them wrong. Almost all of us understand how you feel, we've been through similar things. If you ever need someone to talk to, my door is always open and I'm sure that Kelpie and Allure would love to speak with you as well."

As I finished measuring, I felt something wet hit my hands. I looked up to see Ashton tearing up before he wrapped his arms around me in a hug.

"Th-Tha-Thank you... Angel." His muffled voice sounded sincere and I was happy for him to know that we don't care about what you are, but we care for who you are. Hell, we wouldn't care if you had one arm, leg, or even no limbs, but we would care if you murdered someone innocent.

"De nada." I patted Ashton's head, "I'm going to take my leave with the boys now, alright? Make sure to drink some water once you feel better, you're going to be dehydrated after all that crying." Pulling away from the hug, I tossed the measuring tape back onto the table and gave a small wave before leading Joshua and Colver out the door.

As I closed it, Joshua began to speak.

"That was nice of you."

"I helped Kel when they were like that."

"But, isn't Kelpie biologically female?"

"Nope, biologically a male. But, also a girl and neither and sometimes both." I started, "They are genderfluid, sometimes they may feel more feminine one day, sometimes more masculine, some both and other times non-binary. They usually let us know if we get confused. Today they is a she. Could be the same tomorrow or for the next week. We'll see soon enough."

"Oh."

"Like I said, Veskia is accepting. Because a lot of us have been through a lot of things." I explained once more as we took down the hall to find the extra room, "Geeze, would've been nice if Kel gave us a god damn map."

Joshua chuckled and suddenly looked surprised.

"Shit! Drayson!"

"Drayson?"

"My friend... He never knew."

"Oh... Wait, does he have red messy hair? Green eyes and is an overactive five year old in a sixteen year old body?"

"You know him?"

"Saw him before the entire thing at the capitol." I rubbed the back of my neck, "He was talking to someone on his phone, maybe a family member."

Joshua looked down at his feet. Guess that Drayson never told him much about family stuff, then again, it can be a touchy matter.

"He did mention something going on with his parents two weeks ago, but he never explained."

Am I just going to be a counselor today? Because that's actually pretty fine with me. My dads always told me that if I wasn't an Illusioner, that I would be getting so many job offers. But, even if that was a thing, I would still work at Firefly Bites.

"Give him time. Sometimes it's best to wait for things like this. He'll call when he's ready."

"But, I should at least tell him that-"

"Not today."

Joshua just nodded silently, before looking around.

"Where's Colver?"

"Up ahead." I pointed down the hall and found him waiting by a door, "And he found the room." I shook my head, it would've been nice if he poked me or something.

As we walked up to the room, Joshua sighed. Opening the door, it revealed just a simple single bed and dresser.

"Hey Elodia..."

"Hm?" I hummed as I flopped onto the bed with Colver following in tow. We both had large smiles on our faces, or at least until I started to roll and ended up falling off the bed,"One sec... That hurt." I grumbled as I sat up, rubbing my head and looking up at Joshua. He looked serious.

"I'm ready to choose."

xxx DEVIN xxx

"A leader, huh?"

"How about a sub-gang, crumpet."

"Oi..." I called out, "He's made up his mind."

"What's the gang going to be called and your own name?"

"Uh..."

"How about Sunshine?" I pitched, "You remind me of the sun anyways."

The others nodded in agreement. Joshua looked to be in thought, but he seemed to have liked my idea.

"Shining Hearts has a nice ring to it. Vissy can design the mark and Angel can design the outfit." Kamyrn clapped happily, "Oh, I haven't helped a new gang in ages!"

"You just helped Pyro earlier today and five other smaller gangs!"

"I meant a larger gang, honey."

Joshua nodded in agreement, "Alright. Sunshine of the Shining Hearts... Don't I need people though?"

"We can spare some blokes." I called out, "Some have been wanting to join another gang anyways."

"Alright." Joshua smiled. Soon he walked off to find Elodia and Cyril to ask them about the designs. The others slowly walked away as well, some heading back to their headquarters and others going to hang around.

I felt a buzz in my pocket and pulled out my PDA and saw Sho's gang name on the screen.

[CHAT]: Blitz has logged on.

Sho: Yo Devi

[CHAT] : Devils-Light has logged on.

Me: Need something?

Sho: Maybe...

Me: What did the brat do?

Sho: Which one?

Me: Cat

Sho: Oh... Mr. Snowball froze your room

Me: Dammit

Sho: Shit, he found catnip...

[CHAT] Blitz has logged off.

Me: For fucks sake.

[CHAT] Devils-Light has logged off.

"Can that damn moggy give me a damn break!" I cursed tossing my PDA onto the seat next to me. That earned a look from Julio. Looks like he stayed behind with Luis, Luca and Nigel.

"Mr. Snowball?"

"Tch. He's been getting stronger. I already had to clean snow from my mum's house."

"That moggy is still alive?"

"Go bugger off, Dagger." I growled, "He's has Illusioner-abilities."

Luca gave a click of his tongue before walking off. He was probably going to look for Atlas and pick a fight. Atlas left a while ago, chances are to flirt with some poor girl by the bar. To be honest, I would be over there too, but I promised Elodia that I wouldn't drink today after what happened back at Cruoso's capitol. But then again, it is twelve forty-five in the morning, so that promise was yesterday technically.

"I can't believe that you have forgotten todays party for Elodia."

"How many times do I have to say sod off to you for you to actually sod off!" I growled towards Luis. I am not going through this thing again, I already got an earbashing from Kamyrn.

"Until you remember that you haven't gotten her a gift when you kept stating that you were going to outdo all of us."

"Like anything can outdo Visage's angelic artwork of her."

"That is true."

Grumbling, I got up, "I'm heading to the bar counter. Want anything?"

"You promised Elodia that-"

"That was yesterday." I stated.

"The effects of-"

"Just leave him be, Masque. Devil doesn't seem to be in the mood. After all, he did forget about the party." Julio commented.

"I was never told of this damn party!"

"I highly remember telling you two days ago if you got her a gift because you forgot on her actual birthday!"

"That was two days ago! Of course that I wouldn't remember some stupid reminder!"

"Can it, both of you!" Julio shouted.

Growling, I walked off. I didn't want to get into talking about how I apparently forgot about this entire thing. It's not like Elodia actually cares about gifts, she enjoys the good moments better anyways.

Taking a seat at the bar, I sighed.

"That nesh better know what's he's doing."

The End

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