Elemental Rule

Which element is stronger?


3. Love of the Earth

My name is Terence Hinata and I'm very old despite the way I look. I look around nineteen, but really, I am one hundred years older than that. I found out that I was a child of Earth when I was nineteen, so my age stuck. I haven't aged a bit since. You must now be wondering, "Didn't people notice that there's someone amongst them who hasn't changed at all?" Am I right? I was right? Well, some people did wonder the reason why my appearance never changed after I turned thirty, but they eventually stopped and then when I turned fifty, they started looking at me with funny scared faces. Some of my friends had already passed away by the time I turned sixty and everyone in my hometown were treating me like a demon. Every time I was around, everyone would shrink away and hide themselves from me. I moved from that town a year after I turned sixty and made sure to replace their memories of me with some that would ease their minds. Such as, "I died when I turned sixty looking like an old man." The cause of death remained a mystery for I didn't really check. I just threw an Earthly spell to cause them to forget that they ever saw me any older than sixty. Not like they did.... Oh gee. You know what I mean.

"Terence, could you take these to the room above us? And when you get back, I have another job, so hurry."

"Okay, sensei," I said. Well, I've made use of my life since those many years ago. I've been living here a long time and no one has come to me with any suspicion of fear. They've treated me with respect and kindness. But that doesn't mean they aren't really thinking about my oddness. I'm an Earth spirit, so I can tell these things. When there's trouble, the trees tell me. The trees and plants have told me that they do fear me. They do, but they are too polite and kind to show it. But recently, there have been some people who have started treating me oddly. By some people, there's this girl who I went to college together with. She's forty-two and she has a sixteen year old son. She and her son and husband used to invite me over for dinner seeing I had no idea how to cook or even have the money to cook for myself. I started learning when I figured I'd never be invited again. 

After doing what sensei asked of me for the rest of the day, I went home. I found Masato, the girl's son, waiting for me by the door. Again, he looked like he'd been crying. But as soon as he saw me, he smiled a bit and welcomed me home. 

"Why are you here this time?" I asked carefully. I looked at him and he looked at me then looked down again. 

I sighed and opened the door. He raced inside and I followed. 

"Terence, are you a ghost?" he asked.

"Heck no," I said.

"Then what are you?" he asked. He didn't sound afraid to know, just curious. "You don't have to tell me. But it'd be nice to know."

By this time he was in the kitchen putting on an apron. I sweat dropped at this for he had never wanted to wear one in front of me before. He was taught to clean and do other stuff by his parents. It kinda made my heart sink since I barely remembered my parents. The only things I remembered were vivid memories of how they died and how they used to treat me as a child. I shook my head and went upstairs without answering him. I changed clothing and came back downstairs. 

"You cooking for me is rare," I said going into the kitchen. 

"Y-Yeah... Sorry if I'm being weird..." He didn't look at me, but I saw his tensed up shoulders. 

"You know," I started trying not to sound like I know everything, "I think I'm going to move soon..." I leaned back against the counter and raised my head to look at the ceiling. 

"I-Is that so...?" he said not turning around. I felt a slight tremor in the Earth, but it disappeared. 

"Masa-kun," I said looking at his back. "I'm not human..." 

This made him stop.

He turned around and I saw he was crying. He was shaking and tears flowed out of his eyes like a waterfall.

"Run, Teren..." he sobbed. He pulled down his collar and revealed a timed device. 

"M-Masa... what is that?"

He wiped his tears but continued to cry.

"Just as it looks," he said. "My parents.. put it on me.. and told me to come here... The whole town is in on it. They want to kill you. And.. and... I LOVE YOU! I don't want you to die with me!" 

The ticking of the clock began going faster. I knew that if I didn't remain calm, the Earth would start trembling. I stayed calm and asked, "How long do we have?"


"Masato, do you want to come with me? If you don't want to die, do you want to live? I can grant you the power to live. But your parents and everyone else would never look at you the same. That's why we'd both fake our deaths here."

"Y-You want me to... fake my death with you..? But the bomb is real. It'll really kill-"

Before he talked anymore, I planted my lips onto his and shut him up. I pulled away and looked at him. His tears were still coming out of his eyes and he looked at me with his blue eyes sparkled and I gave him a smile. I looked down at his neck and touched the choker. No way in the underworld was I going to leave him knowing that he'd be in danger once I was gone. I put my palm out over the choker and my hand started glowing green. I concentrated on growing vines inside of the clock and when I was sure I was able to take it off of him, I folded my palm and slowly and I concentrated on the timer trying to ignore Masato's constant moaning. 

"Masa-kun," I said softly. "Could you try not to say anything...?"


I finally got it to come off, but as soon as I did, the timer began ticking faster. 

"'T minus 10-'"

"T-Terence.. time to think!"

I grabbed him by the waist and held him tightly and close and waited. The timer counted to zero and that was when I jumped. The explosion would cover our escape. 

Masato held onto me as though his very life depended on it, which it did. He had his face buried in my neck and his arms wrapped around my shoulders. I held onto him and finally we were out of range of the explosion. When we were coming back down, I used the trees and vines to slow down my landing.  When we reached the ground, I kept hold on around Masato's waist who was still holding on and crying. 

"Masato... it's over..."

He nodded tickling me with his hair. I kissed his head, but he wouldn't let go. 

"Which element is stronger?" a voice asked. I recognized the voice. I turned and saw the two people I'd seen at school. They looked like they knew everything. They probably did. 

"Who are you two, really?" I asked.

"My name is Yuki," the pale one said. His hair was tied in a low ponytail and he looked way different than he had before. The black-haired one. His eyes were two mismatched colors. His right eye was red while his left was blue. He also looked really different. Their clothes were not the same as before. They were much more refiuned and less like they just threw on the school uniform. "I'm a Snow Ghost."

My eyes widened. 

"And also the prince of snow..."

"I'm Killstar. Fire Dragon Ghost and the prince of fire."

"We're also gods... since our fathers aren't there anymore," Yuki added gently. 

"A-And... what did you mean when you said 'Which element is stronger?'" I asked.

"Simply that. We'd like to gather all the Element Children together. I think it'll be fun to find out which element is stronger."


Masato looked up from my neck and at Yuki. He looked rather relieved and scared at the same time. Yuki smiled and said, "Hi there. Nice to meet you, Masato."

Masato and I looked at Yuki with blank faces. 

Yuki smiled and asked if we'd like to go along. 

"S-Sure... but where to?"

"To find the other elements of course."

"You think we can?"

"We found you, didn't we?" Killstar said. Killstar... that's rather a strange name... maybe it's because he's a dragon?

"Okay... I guess we will. We don't have anywhere else to go anyways." 

And so, the four of us set out to find the other Elements. I was feeling rather uneasy and the trees and plants were silent as we went our way. 

What could be waiting for us in our futures?

And so, the four of us set out to find the other Elements. I was feeling rather uneasy and the trees and plants were silent as we went our way. 

What could be waiting for us in our futures?

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