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There And Back Again

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“DORK-STA!”

“WHAT DID I DO- OW!”

“Why must you two always make a scene wherever we go?”

“Ah! Here, let me heal you!”

The four mages were making quite a commotion, but in all honesty it wasn’t that uncommon for them. No one really questioned it however, not wanting to interfere with the Magic Knights business, because after all, these four were in fact just that.

Two Black Bulls.

Two Golden Dawn.

One girl and boy from each group.

I’m sure it’s not that hard to guess who.

They were currently returning from a joint mission, passing through a small village on the way back to the capital. Covered in grime and worn out, they were hoping to find a place where they could rest before returning to report about what happened. But as always, nothing ever went as smoothly as one would hope.

Asta was being his normal rambunctious self, still pumped up from the fight they had had earlier in the day, wanting to hurry and have a new mission to go on. He wasn’t completely sure what he had said to startle Noelle, but it ended up with him receiving a punch straight to the face. Yuno was standing off to the side, trying to pretend he was not associated with the others while Mimosa healed the slight bruise that was forming on Asta’s cheek.

“You know,” Asta began, looking up at Noelle from where he sat on the ground, “Your punches are getting a lot stronger. Have you been working out?”

“I-I don’t see how that matters!” Noelle crossed her arms, looking away from the ash-haired mage.

“I’m sure in no time you’ll have mastered that right hook you’ve got going!”

“Whatever!”

Mimosa giggled at their banter, looking at Asta as she healed him. Realizing how close she was to his face, she froze up, a blush blossoming across her cheeks. Hurriedly, she popped up from her kneeling position, running over to Yuno’s side.

“You’re all set now. So, um, try not to get punched again.”

“Huh? Oh, yeah thanks.” Asta pushed himself to his feet, brushing off some dirt. The four began once more to walk through the village, oblivious to the small crowd that had formed. “You know, I bet the Wizard King is gonna give us a bunch of stars for our mission.”

“He’ll give us more than you.” Yuno said calmly, ignoring the glare he received from Asta.

“What?! No he won’t! We performed better than you two did!”

“You mean you got in the way of us therefore making our jobs more difficult than they had to be.”

“No!”

Mimosa and Noelle trailed behind the two arguing boys, used to this kind of banter between them.

“Sometimes it’s hard to believe that they grew up together.” Noelle commented, watching as Asta stood up on his tiptoes to try and get in Yuno’s face. Mimosa sighed, a small giggle escaping her.

“You’re not wrong. But it is entertaining to watch them. You can just feel the love they hold for one another.”

“If by love you mean want to throttle the other, then sure.”

The four continued on their way, slowly coming to the edge of the village. Deciding to just continue on and clean up at a later time, they made their way out, enjoying the breeze that accompanied the darkening sky. The group of mages were completely oblivious to the shadow following them, not sensing it’s presence as it trailed behind.

After another hour of walking, the capital was in sight, no more than another hour’s walk away. Once they had another heated discussion, the group agreed on camping out for the night instead of finding an inn or anything because the weather was nice and they weren’t expected for another day. Finding a nice grassy field with some trees for coverage, the four mages made themselves comfortable.

Yuno started a fire while Asta hunted around for some berries and other little goodies while Noelle and Mimosa pulled out a few provisions from their packs, making a nice little space for everyone to sit. Just as Noelle was about to call out to Asta, it was then that the shadow decided to strike.

One moment the four were going about their jobs and the next they were plummeting through the air.

No one had a chance to prepare themselves as the portal opened suddenly beneath their feet, each falling helplessly through it. The four mages tried to grab onto one another, any grievances being put aside for the sake of fear and worry.

Yuno managed to grab ahold of Noelle’s wrist, watching as she fell ahead of him, terror flashing in her eyes. Mimosa was able to catch a handful of Asta’s robe, not letting go as she closed her eyes tightly, trying not to scream in his ear. The four fell for what seemed like forever, but was only a few seconds before another portal opened beneath them and they exited through it.

They landed in a heap on the ground, piled up on top of one another. Mimosa was the first to get up, seeing as she landed on the top. Pushing herself off of the others, she stood up on wobbly legs, looking around her wildly. When her eyes registered what stood before her, a scream wrenched it’s way out of her throat.

Hearing this, the other three quickly untangled their limbs, each jumping to their feet, four grimoires glowing and ready to be used. When they saw what scared Mimosa, they too froze in place. Asta and Yuno shook it off first, stepping forward in defensive positions. Bell, who had been resting for the time, sprang to life, clinging onto Yuno’s robe. Noelle held on to Mimosa’s hand with one while her other shakily clutched her wand..

Their Magic Knight squads did not prepare them for anything like this.