"Do you believe in humanity?"
As he asked me that question, my body froze in astonishment. The lighting of the candle flickered as his visage wrapped in disgust. His eyes emitted a hidden, cold rage which was unlike anything I've ever seen before.
"Why not?" I muttered, wishing for the man covered in shadows to spare me from any of his evil thoughts, as I replied to his question in all honesty.
Smiling ominously, he parted his lips and said with a sarcastic voice.
"We are living in hell."
-Page 12, Chapter 5. Journey to the myth by George J. Northtooth.
Without any prior warning, another girl leaped into Elizabeth's figure from her back and hugged her waist tightly. Although Elizabeth could have guessed who was the identity of the person according to her voice, and she was used to this overly intimate skinship gesture of her, it was still uncomfortable at the same time.
"Good morning, Ellie." Greeted Elizabeth with a smile to the girl behind her. Sticking out her head to Elizabeth's right shoulder, the girl named Ellie smiled back in reply as she said, "Good morning to you too."
Ellie B. Weistern, a best friend of Elizabeth who has been around the girl's life since high school. Ellie possessed a silver, long hair awkwardly hanging over a thin, lived-in face. Her gentle eyes were painted in green, as they were set seductively on her porcelain-like sculpted visage.
"I told you to just call me El." Pouting her small lips, the girl glanced towards Elizabeth in an attempt to display a false complaint, "It's easier to say my name with only a single syllable."
"Isn't that rude?" Tilted her head to the side, Elizabeth asked back to her friend with the same answer every time the young girl brought up the topic of her nickname.
"It's okay because it's you." Stated Ellie nonchalantly as she started to let go of Elizabeth's waist. Then, Elizabeth turned her wrist to take a look at the small wristwatch, checking out the time for their class.
"Don't worry. Professor Ray is always late in the morning. We all know of his horrible habits." Commented Ellie while she went to the seat right next to Elizabeth. Wandering her gaze in the classroom, the young girl added, "Besides, take a look. Many of the guys haven't even arrived yet due to the professor's late timing."
"I know." Said Elizabeth softly, as she took out her notebook and all necessary utensils later on in the study session. Meanwhile, her friend Ellie was pulling out her smartphone and logging in to all of her social media applications, just like what she usually does.
"Oh? Another case!" She exclaimed after a few moments, while staring at her phone's display screen more intensely in order to read the news that pooped out on her browser app and was one of the trending hashtag topics for the day.
"What is it?" Probed Elizabeth, curious of what her friend might have found to make her that excited.
"See this! A new murder had happened last night in Westwood street, block 3B."
As Ellie gave her phone for her friend to check out on its content, Elizabeth graciously accepted the offer and brought her attention to the device. When she saw the headline of the news, she couldn't help but furrow her eyebrows as it was an exaggerating statement.
"'Unsolved case, attack from a ghoul in the Federation's territory'? This journalist must have been half asleep if they wrote news about ghoul." Criticized Elizabeth immediately, without hiding her blunt words at all. It was unusual for Elizabeth to say her dissatisfaction most of the time. But when she did, she would say whatever she had in mind without abandon.
"You don't like it?" Supporting her head with her hand on the table, Ellie smiled slightly to Elizabeth's reaction and countered it with her own, "As long as I know, super powers are something that shouldn't exist."
"Ellie.. Espers is the next evolution step for humankind. Within their genes, they can perform feats that's unimaginable from an ordinary human's view. But a 'ghoul'? That's fiction and fantasy. It doesn't exist." Argued Elizabeth while she shook her head to her friend's sentiment. It was understandable and within common sense for espers to exist as there were scientific ways to explain their migration genes. But things that came out of the child's storybook were too far fetched even for her.
"Maybe.." Shrugging her shoulders, Ellie trailed off her words and continued her speech after a few seconds, "Maybe not."
"Oh, C'mon Beth. We are in mythological history major for f*ck sake. If we do not believe in fantasy and such, this class will be so boring." Sticking out her tongue, Ellie commented, "Not to mention, almost all of the students who took this major were boys, ugh."
Replying in silence, Elizabeth put down her friend's phone on the table and gave up on saying anything more. While she took back her smartphone, Ellie stared at Elizabeth's figure and spoke, "I know that you didn't like to be in this major, but try to like what you are doing or you will be burning out soon, Elizabeth."
Elizabeth nodded quietly to what Ellie had said and thought of her school experience so far. She had chosen a mythological history major solely due to her father rather than her own decision.
For as long as she remembered in her childhood, Elizabeth was an orphan. Until one day, her life changed for the better the moment her adoptive parents showed up in the orphanage she was in and decided to adopt her on that day.
Through ups and downs, she had managed to slowly open up her heart to these two strangers who were a couple and would stay with her for most of her life in the future. Yet, on a fateful night, her adoptive mother was in an accident and lost her life. .
As a single father, he raised her and tried to be supportive to her until her graduation in high school. To her surprise, for the very first of his life, her father had requested Elizabeth to choose a mythological history major for her future. She couldn't reject it but at the same time she hadn't had the slightest interest in fantasy and such. With a heavy heart, she agreed to her father's decision that led her until this day.
She was hoping to be an engineer or programmer instead of a historian. One that might be searching for nonexistent pasts and things in the realm of imagination.
Sighing for the second time today, Elizabeth felt her good mood waned by the minutes. Flipping open the pages of her study book, her finger traced onto the last text she had read last night as she hummed the same tune back when she went to the subways.
"Oh? You gonna read those poems again?" Quipped Ellie while she glanced to the page of the book Elizabeth had opened, "It's that book again. Written by the infamous poet, isn't it? What's his name again?"
Curling up the edge of her lips, Elizabeth answered with a hint of excitement in her tone.
"It's George J. Northtooth."