Pocket Legends: Neo Mages
Episode 5: United Alterra
Chapter 2: The Diamond Elf

Staring at the metallic floor, I kept trembling silently. After all I went through, I had no reason a private meeting with the Elf Queen would be extremely anxious. Masked uniformed officers paid no attention to me when I slightly looked at them.
Angela: Something’s wrong. If she wanted me executed, I would have already been dead.
DEA Agent: “Past nine. We’re already late. Contact headquarters.”
Radio: “Roger.”
He then turned at me.
DEA Agent: “It’s time.”
Stepping out of the transport plane, we were packed together while crossing the vast runway in the night. Several rows of light and medium anti-aircraft weapons were stationed. The plane that was behind us on the runway slowly made its way back to the hangar.
Angela: This airfield must’ve been in a bad spot. Is that why the Air Force started attacking?
Despite me constantly shuddering from the freezing gust, the tall elves seemed to be unbothered. As far I can guess, they must’ve been a part of a rescue team to search for the Elf Queen. Arriving at a row of black limousines, the agents saluted each other. The chauffeurs then opened the doors on both sides.
DEA Agent: “You are to remain silent until Executive Macmillan permits you to speak.”
Without a word, I got into the vehicle. An agent was sitting next to me. The next thing I knew, the chauffeur sat right beside me. Noticing both of them had pistols in their belts, they knew I wasn’t clean yet. Had I gone rogue by now, I’d have a bullet in my mouth. In front of me, a well built executive seemed to be inspecting the files he had. His presence is very strong.
Angela: Macmillan… Was he the one of the survivors as well?
The engines started to rumble and began driving towards its destination. High levels of anxiety still preoccupied my thoughts. The executive kept mumbling to himself as he went on with the report. I could still hear what he was saying.
Macmillan: “Yup. No better than the Crimsons…”
Angela: “...”
Macmillan: “Maverick, you and your stupid morons with your garbage tactics…”
Angela: You son of a...
My face turned red. Despite having no mana, a volatile feeling boiled my mind. A desire to set ablaze everyone inside, like a house engulfed with flames. He swiftly turned back and tilted his sunglasses slightly. His masculine face gazed right at me.
Macmillan: “What?”
His eyes locked at my eyes as if they were looking right at my soul. The thought of fury warped immediately into hiding under a pile of rubble while enemy bombers soared above, waiting for them to go away. He slowly turned back checking the files.
Macmillan: “Just as I thought…”
All I can do now is to make myself more smaller. There’s no way of getting out of this. The least I could do is recall the events in Blacksmoke Mountain.
Marksman: “I’m sorry all of this happened. I was just being a piece of-”
Angela: “Just spit the facts.”
Marksman: “…Alright, look. The Neo Mages? They’re screwed.”
Angela: “I don’t… buy that.”
Marksman: “The UCP knew we were planning all along. They cut all the supply lines. Hunted down those who were involved. Got a report from one of our guys.”
Angela: “Thompson?”
Marksman: “You’ll find out. Anyways, about the missile… heard the project’s been delayed. Budget probably going straight to the pro-Dragunov faction in Lake Louis. Funding, I guess.”
Angela: “Dragunov. Is he dead?”
A metallic rap pouched from the other side. He got up to knees but looked back sternly before his departure. He shook his head.
Marksman: “We should’ve never joined the Neo Mages. They’re up to no good.”
The memories faded into reality. Peering above, a flag of United Alterra fluttered in the night. The vehicle came to a halt, and a military officer who was outside opened the door.
DEA Agent: “Maintain your etiquette, and refrain from being compulsive.”
Macmillan firstly stepped out of the vehicle before I did so. We both headed towards the doorway. Noticing the officers that were present, none of them really bothered to pay attention. Stepping inside, the air conditioners must have made the rooms chilly. Typewriters kept clacking, radios blaring that came from all over the world, and repetitious chattering about the dragons and other military topics.
Angela: What’s with these people talking about dragons?
However, the memories of dragons began stinging my brain. It felt like thunderbolts that kept piercing at my head constantly.
Angela: Stop it… What do you want from me?!
The headache stopped. Descending deeper into the headquarters, we arrived at a checkpoint, but the place seemed to be an empty subway. Few of the guards were present. A security officer inspected both Macmillan and the guarding agents of their identification books at the table. He then grabbed the telephone receiver and called someone. Shortly after, he hung up the phone. The officer nodded. The executive looked back at his guards.
Macmillan: “Both of you are dismissed.”
The agents both nodded without hesitation and headed towards the stairs. The executive grabbed the keys.
Macmillan: “You. Follow me.”
Two of us jumped in the jeep. The whole area turned out to be a large tunnel, attached by endless pipes and rectangular lights. He turned the engine on, and the vehicle started to accelerate.
Macmillan: “We built this when the humans arrived from their universe. If it wasn’t constructed, then the absence of the Diamond Conduit wouldn’t have saved more lives.”
I simply stared at the window confusedly. He seemed to be amused by my response.
Macmillan: “You weren't even fit to join the Neo Mages after all.”
The jeep reduced its speed and stopped in the middle of the tunnel. Macmillan took the keys off and jumped out of the jeep. It turned out he was unlocking the door that was at the sideways of the tunnels.
Macmillan: “Move!”
I hurried to get off the jeep. We passed a short hallway before entering the lobby room. In the lobby, there were a few rows of cushion chairs. One of them had a suitcase resting on it. On the other side, there was a meeting room that was concealed by glass panes. An attendant noticed us and opened the door. However, he was no ordinary attendant. I could identify by the small pin on his uniform.
Attendant: “You’re an hour late.”
Macmillan: “I’ll take responsibility. Tell the Elf Queen that the weather delayed our trip.”
Before he headed towards the lobby, there was a whisper in my ear.
Macmillan: “Find out what they are.”
Angela: They?
The executive closed the door and sat on the couch, grabbing a nearby newspaper. He was sitting next to a suitcase. I can tell he wasn’t resting casually.
Attendant: “Have a seat. Her Majesty will meet you.”
He walked away. Uncertain of what was going to happen next, being scolded by the Elf Queen is no better than fighting in war. I could have likely been convicted as a terrorist and be dragged to a firing squad. The attendant entered the room that was at the corner.
Royal Attendant: “Her Majesty.”
The Elf Queen strolled in a gray suit with a black tie. She sat down on the chair. My confidence swept away at that moment. All I could do is to submit.
Angela: “Your-”
Elf Queen: “Dragunov. Do you remember him?”
The attendant returned with a pair of files, handing one of them down the table. Revealing the file by myself, a displayed photo of an elder Ursan waving his hand towards a huge crowd.
Elf Queen: “The agency captured this photo last week. Dragunov’s New Order has put the Alterran nation in grave danger.”
The sting pain sharply turned into a static image flashed of a row of Ursans being gunned to the wall. That bastard’s still alive.
Elf Queen: “The Neo Mages are to be compromised peacefully as well.”
Rebellious mages with furious eyes roared in a crowd.
Elf Queen: “Taking initiative is a step to prevent further aggression.”
Angela: You won’t keep getting away. You need to die.
Elf Queen: “Your father.”
Noticing a hidden picture that was covered by Dragunov’s photo by the corner, I swept the first picture away. It was that moment my vision became disorientated.
Elf Queen: “He did not make it out of Glumdoll.”
Dad’s portrait dazed my eyes. The meeting room stretched into pitch black. Discolored arms began strangling a silhouetted elf in a silver dress as the shrieking resonated in my head.
Elf Queen: “I am told by the agents that you have survived harsh events after your training.”
Illusions had vanished and the schrieking was gone. The attendant handed out the last file. Hoping it would not be a photo reveal of my mother. She shortly slides down the file. I first hesitated, but quickly opened it to get it over with. However, it turned out to be an application instead.
Elf Queen: “The Diamond Executive Agency is a voluntary force. You will apply to community service at Balefort if you are willing to reject it.”
Angela: Cinnamon.
The Elf Queen stood up from the chair as if she was about to depart. Looking up, she looked down at me like a goddess of war declaring her final judgment.
Elf Queen: “Do what you must.”
I stared blankly back at the paper.
Angela: The reds…
Cinnamon: “If you join any military group, then you’ll be in big trouble!”
Angela: But if we don’t kill Dragunov…
Mikhailov: Alterra… All… will die.

To Be Continued…