The Gale Dances
Friday night crept up on them faster than expected, and Kai found himself standing up the Destiny Bounty’s deck in a fancy brown suit and red necktie. He was a bit anxious about being seen, and by extension being teased. He checked the watch on his wrist that read “4:30pm,” and began rocking back and forth on his heels. Finally, he could hear footsteps from the lower deck. Part of him wanted to run and hide in case it was one of his sword-brothers, but he couldn’t seem to move. The door opened. There stepped out Kamara. Her hair had been tied back to a low knotted ponytail off to the side. She had done a light cover of makeup: light brown eyeshadow, mascara and pink lipstick, wearing a chocolate brown strapped dress, and white pearl earrings. Kai was a bit dumbstruck. This didn’t even look like the Kamara he knew! Kamara smiled sheepishly.
She was equally as surprised at his rare look. She didn’t expect him to dress up nice.
“Does this mean he’s serious?” She wondered.
“You look…nice” she commented.
Kai smiled back, stammered, “Y-yeah, I mean, thanks! You too!”
There was an awkward silence. Kamara looked out at the horizon. The sun was beginning to go down, creating bright yellows and very light oranges and reds. Then, Kai cleared his throat.
“So ah…You wanna get going?”
Kamara looked back at him and nodded.
“Yeah! Yeah, let’s go.”
Kai pulled out his sword and transformed it into his blade cycle. He jumped on and held out his hand to her. Kamara slowly took it, and Kai was about to pull her up into the seat behind him, when suddenly the rest of their sword-brothers appeared out of nowhere. Cole whistled.
“Wow! You two look fancy!”
Both of them jumped, and went a little red in the face.
“Ehe, thanks…I think” Kamara replied.
“You up for teasing us some more, or are you going to let us get a move on?” Kai asked, firmly.
“Of course, of course!” exclaimed Jay, “We just…wanted to see you off!”
“Yeah, and try to make a fool out of us” Kai muttered under his breath.
“Okay…” Kamara said, a little unsure if that was really they’re intention.
Kamara took Kai’s hand and got behind him. The engine of the blade cycle roared to life.
“Have a good time!” Zane called.
The two nodded.
“We will” Kai called back.
Then, with a thrust on the acceleration petal, the blade cycle zoomed off the plank, and took off.
We arrived in a large village, just barely qualifying to be a town. There was a lot of commotion outside, cars hustling and bustling and people chattering and walking up and down the sidewalk.
“It’s the Artwalk” I commented, “They have one every month. Ereganto city is a very artistic-oriented place. I’ve heard that tourism is slowly growing in this area.”
“That explains it” said Kai.
After a little while, I pointed at a building in a four-building center.
“There! That’s the Grill.”
Kai put on the brakes and whipped around the center so that they could stop behind the building. He slowed and the we quickly got up, disabling the blade cycle back into the Sword of Fire. Kai hastily threw it into the case he had and locked it up tight.
“Hey…Um…” I started.
Kai looked up.
“Er, thanks for coming with me” I finished.
Kai smiled, genuinely.
We established eye contact with each other for a long time.
Then, Kamara cleared her throat and said, “I uh, I need to call the owners and let them know I’m here.”
Kai nodded. “Okay.”
A few minutes later, the back door opened and out came a tall, short blonde haired woman with glasses, black dress with brown undershirt come out.
“Ahh, Kamara Silverknight” she announced.
The two shook hands.
“Thank you for coming out on such short notice.”
“Oh, it was nothing, Mrs. Pierce. I was happy to help!” I replied, politely.
Mrs. Pierce gestured to her date.
“Who did you bring?” Kamara jumped, then stammered slightly, “Oh! Uh, this is my friend Kai Smith. He’s just here to…”
Kai cut her off.
“I’m her date.”
Kamara looked at him, shocked and her cheeks getting red.
“Well,” Mrs. Pierce said, a but emotionless, “I’ll…show you where you need to be. Our technicians will help you set up.”
Kamara nodded. As they followed Mrs. Pierce, Kamara nudged Kai hard and hissed:
“Why did you say that??”
“Well, it’s the truth!” Kai hissed back, a bit offended.
Kamara scoffed. “Since when do you care about the truth?”
Kai half scowled, half offended.
Kamara sighed. “I’m just…not quite comfortable with broadcasting it right now.”
She looked at him with a grave face.
“I hope you can understand. I’m not ready yet. This is whole new territory.”
Kai frowned, his anger melting away.
“Okay” he replied in a quiet, more calm tone.
The equipment was ready and arranged. The technicians were on the other side of the room adjusting the volume. Kamara was in the shadows, getting her violin tuned and plugged into the speakers. Finally, Kai was sitting at a table, off to the left side of the room, alone, with a single lit candle in the middle. Then, one of the technicians on the microphone announced:
“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Croc’s Grill. Please silence your cellphones and other gadgets as it will be damaging to the performance; and now, tonight’s featured entertainment: Kamara Silverknight of Indie Pop band, Live and Love.”
There was clapping after the voice was finished. Kai clapped along, now curious to see what his sword-sister could do, now that he wasn’t going to be interrupted by snakes. Then, warm lights illuminated the stage, and there stood Kamara. She looked into the crowd, smiling politely and nodding. When she spotted Kai in the crowd, she quickly looked away and took a deep breath. Then, the backup tracks began to play, and Kamara strummed the strings of her violin.
There was the musical, synthesizing tune that simulated falling rain. Kamara slowly rocked back and forth to the beat, plucking the strings along with the beat, then strumming slowly again. Then, the started to pick up quickly, up and down, left and right, straight and precise. The synthesizer blared and rang like electricity around a tesla coil. Then it slowed again. It seemed to be moving from segment to segment. The bass vibrant and heavy, almost shaking the room. Then, it slowed back into a soft, smooth tone. It rang out from the strings. Kai began to realize a hidden meaning within the music. The song was representing the natural elements. The first one was water, the second one was lightning, the third was earth, and the fourth was wind. Suddenly, the music kicked up, intense, loud and fierce. The lights changed slightly to a orange, reddish color. Fire. He could almost see the blaze in Kamara’s eyes and she whirled energetically, but acutely. Then, with a forceful whirl, almost controlling the air currents to blast throughout the room, Kamara stopped, her back arched down to the ground, and staring at it, breathlessly.
The crowd clapped greatly.
Some even shouted, “Bravo! Bravo!”
Kai almost did the same, but refrained himself. Kamara broke her stance and smiled. She bowed, courteously. Then, when the normal elevator music started up again, Kamara exited the stage.
She returned a few minutes later. She found the table Kai was sitting at, and slowly approached it. A twinge of nervousness crept up inside her. Kai smiled.
“That was good!” He praised, “You were…Really good!”
Kamara grinned. “Thank you.”
She sat down at the other end swiftly and settled her small bag on her lap.
“Where did you learn to dance like that? It was so…convincing!” Kamara chuckled nervously.
“You wouldn’t believe me…”
Kai leaned in a little, a mischievous glint in his eye. “Try me.”
Kamara took a deep breath and sighed. “Well, if you must know…Sensei Wu taught it to me.”
Kai’s eyes widened in disbelief. “No…!”
“Sensei Wu? Our Sensei Wu?”
Kamara nodded. “It was somewhat like therapy,” she explained, “He used my passion for music and dancing to help me control my powers.”
Kai’s face displayed awareness. He leaned back in his chair, breathing out loud, “Wow, that’s…That’s really cool!”
A waitress came by and both of them ordered their meals. Kamara chose crab cakes, where Kai ordered shrimp. They sipped on their drinks in silence for a long while. Kai tried to speak many times, but he could see Kamara was still slightly uncomfortable. Kai had dated girls once or twice before, but Kamara never did. This entire scenario was new to her.
Ironically, Kamara was the one to speak up.
“So…Where are you from?” she asked.
“Eh, it was a small, rinky-dink town down South. It was mostly rice planting there, but for some reason, my dad decided to open up shop there.”
“And was that a good decision on his part?”
“Well, we never were in any danger of closing. Back then Ninjago wasn’t at war. So there wasn’t much need for a blacksmith, or than the occasional farming tools, and wagon wheels.”
His eyes sparkled a little in wonder in recalling his next memory.
“I remember the swords dad would make in his spare time. They were…beautiful! Even when the blade cooled, it…still shined like…like a sunset!”
He then looked down at the table and frowned.
“He and my mom disappeared when I was six. Nya was three.”
Kamara frowned as well. “I’m so sorry, Kai.”
Kai looked away. “We were lucky to have people look out for us but…for some reason I didn’t want our shop…Our home…to die. As soon as I was old enough, I took that shop back. Though, I never really had my dad’s blacksmithing talents.”
He drifted his head back upwards. “Now that I think of it, I don’t know why my sister and I could even benefit from it. I hated blacksmithing!”
“You wanted to preserve your parents memory” Kamara observed.
Kai glanced back up at Kamara.
“There’s no shame in that. I understand wanting to keep hold of anything that reminded you of people gone past. Everyone who suffers loss…Does that” she continued.
Kai sighed, scoffing. “I don’t know why I told you that. I’ve never told anyone that. Not even Zane, Cole, and Jay. It’s…” Kai trailed off. He looked away again. Kamara smiled, sympathetically. “I won’t tell anyone” she stated. He looked back up at her and smiled. It was a warm, genuine smile.
I apologize for flip-flopping between points of view. This is an old story and I was having a hard time deciding which one to go for. I will do my best to stay consistently as possible.