“Everyone was so nice at the airport today! One would think that being such a busy hub, and the primary one from the United States of the Americas to Great Japan, that they would much more unpleasant. I am happy to see other people be so happy!”
Everyone in the third class compartment could not help but look back to the source of the voice. The young girl with long flowing blonde hair, blue eyes, large glasses, and wearing what looked like light mail underneath a coat of arms just kept talking. She was definitely part of the paladin order, but not a warrior. Her face was open and almost child like, but the eyes seemed bursting with knowledge. The amount of data pads her hands indicated she was a scholar. She did indeed seem to continue to pump out many facts, but the bubbly personality was slowly having an adverse affect on everyone in the plane.
Sitting not far away, a woman in her mid thirties turned to her. Her hair was long and done into a tight ponytail. The silver color of it was highlighted with traces of blue, matching the blue color of her half glasses on her sharp angled but attractive face. She wore a business suit, but a pin over her left breast showed she was a diplomat of the Order. “Alice, lets have some quiet time for now.”
“But Miss Lorin, our Paladin warrior has been without interaction for so long, should we not lift the warrior’s spirit up and…”
It was not true that everyone was staring at Alice. Sitting next to Alice was something very few people had seen. A person was there, but no one could tell anything about that person. The suit the person wore revealed no distinguishable shape of that person. The suit armor seemed to be a mix of what astronauts wore and swat team gear. It was anyone’s guess whether it was male or female. Even the height of the person was hard to tell. One thing was certain, it was a Paladin. And the Paladin just moved its hand to the halt position in front of Alice.
On the large screened face, text flashed. It read, “I am doing well, Alice. Quiet is good.” It was done in English and Japanese.
Alice just smiled, “I am so happy to hear that. Though if you need to know anything about Japan, just ask me. I will be happy to help!” The Paladin just nodded to her.
An hour latter in the flight, a little Japanese boy asked his mother, “Why does that person where that suit? It’s scary.”
Lorin looked over the boy and mother, but before she said anything, Alice was beaming at them with bright eyes. Lorin nodded that she may answer.
In Japanese, Alice said, “You want to know why that one is wearing that suit?” The boy nodded. “There are many rituals each Paladin warrior has to go through in order to become a full fledged member of the Order. One of them is called the Test of True Self. During this test, the Paladin loses his or her identity completely. The Paladin is not allowed to give any form of identity away, not even gender. During this time, the Paladin begins to truly understand what makes them who they are and what makes them a Paladin. Right now, even I do not know who is in that suit.”
For the tourist and people returning home, the members of the Order provided something interesting to talk about when they arrived at Japan.
The custom guard tilted his head the side and leaned forward before saying, “It is going to be difficult to let that Paladin by.”
Lorin knew in Japanese body language that the guard meant ‘He is not allowed by.’ She spoke with a smooth tone, “I am not asking you to let the Paladin by right now. I am asking one of you to sign this consent form before verifying the Paladin to be let by.”
The guard looked at the form, “So, one of us will be allowed to know the Paladin’s identity in order to verify the visa, but that one would have to keep the identity a secret? That is going to be difficult.”
Alice spoke up, “Lorin, I will start looking at the visa rules. There is bound to be a way too…”
The Paladin walked up to the guard and made a quick bow before pointing to a private area. The Paladin grabbed the form and pointed to where the guard should sign. A bright flash from to the side caused Lorin and Alice to look away, but what caught them off guard was the custom guard saying, “Alright, I will sign!” They turned back to see the Paladin and the guard go into a private screening room.
A few seconds latter, they both came out. The guard bowed to the Order members, “My apologies for the delay. Everything is in order. And welcome back, Paladin.”
The Paladin did a small face palm against the screened mask. The guard froze and said, “MY APOLOGIES!” and bowed again.
As the trio headed towards the train station, Lorin said, “So, you have been to Japan before?” The Paladin did not answer, but Alice was giving a wicked satisfied grin.
They looked at the train routes. Lorin and Alice showed signs of confusion. “That one says it is to where we need to go, but it seems awfully long in travel time for such a short distance. I thought there was a more direct route.”
The Paladin walked over to a couple of station workers. The mask flashed some text, in which the Paladin asked, “What train takes us directly to Hatamoto Buo Academy?” The workers pointed out one on the list.
The Paladin bowed in thanks and walked back to the others. The flash of text said, “The ones listed up there are for tourist routes. This one will get us there directly.”
The trio bought the tickets and arranged for the large amount of luggage to be delivered to the academy. As they walked to the train, Alice said to Lorin, “Well, now I am sure the Paladin is female.”
Lorin looked at Alice, “True, there are very few men Paladins, but what makes you so sure.”
Alice smiled, “She asked for directions.”
The Paladin paused for a second, but unable to make any action that could give information about identity away, kept walking on…