Raven's Wing 2: Chapter 14

"Here for me, maybe for the first four years. I'm already enrolled in Tokyo U." Rowen smiled to his friends. He would probably be one of the few that stayed here but that was fine with him. "What about you guys?" he turned to the others so they would all know where everyone was.

"Iím set up at Sinsha U in Toyema so that I can keep tabs on the Dojo and the house." Sage mentioned. He was a little worried about Shary headed for the states, but he knew that if she needed someone to talk to or needed help in any way, then she could call on Ryo and he would be there same day.

Kento shrugged. "I donít know where Iím going yet. I think Iíll just take a year first to work at my parentís restaurant and while Iím doing that I can work out where Iím going to and all that."

"I managed to get into Honshu Island Marine Biology Institute." Cye said grinning. This had been his goal ever since he was young as the HIMBI was the top ranked school in the eastern hemisphere for the study of Marine biology. Something that he was becoming quite proficient in as he worked with Sekhmet over the last few years to wipe out the effects of the poison that had been released into the oceans.

"That's really great Cye," Shary nodded to her friend and turned to the other girls within their close group. "And you girls? Any ideas where to go?" Both of them were smart and could probably get into any college of their choice.

Carrie and Nikki looked at each other and then to the group. "Well." Nikki started. "There really isnít a school that has a study program for my particular area of interest here in Japan. So I am headed back to China for a few more years with my sensei to see what he can teach me. Then maybe another year in the Dynasty doing pure research into the old ways. Mia has agreed to help me notate it all down so at least it wonít be me and Kayura all the time." She smiled as she remembered stumbling on the spell that had let her spy on Dais and Sekhmet. It was funny to watch and listen to them theorize about what was going on in the main library.

Carrie smiled and nodded to Nikki as she answered. "I passed my AP courses here with out too much trouble. I think that I shall go back to my clan and follow an alternative schooling for a few years at least so that I can carry on my family heritage."

"Sounds like we've all got our futures figured out." Rowen said with a small smile. They were all going their own paths and sure it was going to feel weird without meeting everyday like this but that was just the way things went. Besides, they could still write, phone and/or e-mail each other.

Shary was thinking about Kibou and Meiyo. No doubt they won't be able to come with her and would probably have to stay here with Cale and Sage. They had just come and now she would have to leave. Sighing she didn't mind that much. As long as she knew she had family to come back to it wouldn't be that bad.

"Thinking about your friends?" Ryo asked in a flash of introspection. "You know. I can take Kibou with me to the states if she wants to go. However, I think Meiyo has gotten attached to Cale."

At that moment a cat landed in the middle of the group after having jumped out of the tree above them and looked at them all and sensing Sharyís distress.

"I guess so..." but she didn't sound very sure. She looked in some surprise as the white persian lay in her lap and purred softly.

~No need to worry about my brother and myself. We can adapt anywhere should the need arise.~ She let her eyes slip close some as the young woman began to softly scratch her ears. ~But I would like to go to the States as well. I will spend time with the both of you, watching over you both.~

Ryo smiled. "I guess that settles that question. Hope you like pet carriers Kibou because you are going to be in one for a long time until we get to the states."

The others smiled at the fact that Ryo was starting to settle down again. With the way he was going, it made him unpredictable for even them and dropping him into the States like that would have just been a disaster in the making.

The cat quirked her ears towards him, as if questioning his meaning until Shary explained what that meant. Her ears went flat against her skull. ~I think not! I will not be caged like some animal!~

~Kibou, you are an animal.~ Sage gently retorted back since she was speaking to them all.

She snorted and her body relaxed. ~I won't cause any trouble at all. All I'll do is sleep, eat and read what is going on in this world.~

"Sorry, Customs in the States are tough when it comes to animals. I will make sure that it is a large carrier. But you still have to deal with the fact that you are going to be caged for about a day and a half." Ryo told her as he had already read up on the customs laws of several countries.

He reached out and gently scritched her under her jaw and smiled as the cat started to relax even further. "Donít worry, I will check on you when ever I can. There are about four planned stops and I have made certain that I am able to check what ever I am bringing with me at each stop before continuing on."

Kibou just purred softly and Shary nodded to him. "Does that answer your question?" She gently put the cat in Ryo's arms, and stood up to get her legs awake before they fell asleep. Everything was going all right except for one small detail but she would talk later about it.

The others smiled at Ryo as he paid the cat some attention. They all knew that he was one of them on the inside. It lead to his rapport with White Blaze and now with Kibou. His nature was of a cat and yet he was fully human in the fact that he was able to make his friends and have them understand him. Sage smiled, as he knew that he would have to write to a friend of his in the states and tell him to keep an eye out for his fiery friend. Knowing Ryo, he would find some way to get into trouble and out of it.

The others started to get up to go to the assembly that day and headed out. Ryo left Kibou in a sunny spot and headed inside. This was the announcements for the class leaders and for how graduation was going to be run that year.

All the graduating students practiced the way they would get their diploma and such and such. Almost everyone agreed that it was boring but they sooner they all got it down pat the sooner they could all go home and do whatever. They were all lined up alphabetically by their last names and then were seated so that each row and column had the equal amount of students.

The principal practiced just a few parts of the speech, being patient when someone messed up and ran through the routine a few times with no mistakes before he dismissed the graduating seniors. Once more he reminded them all when and where the ceremony would take place.

Everyone left the building in a hurry and as they picked up their caps and gowns they were all soon gathered back at Sharyís place talking about the coming ceremony on the weekend. There were periods of quiet reflection from the entire group gathered there. But that was to be expected at this new and tumultuous turning point in their lives.

Kibou was back at the mansion, curled up on what she declared her pillow and was listening to them with her eyes closed. Meiyo was perched on the back of the sofa before scaling down to the floor and belly-crawled his way around the floor, looking for a dark area to lay in. He settled for under the armchair with just his tail sticking out.

Ryo sat and thought about what was to come. He didn't feel so bad now that Kibou decided to go with him. It would probably be a while before they could get together like this but at least they would be coming back.

The last few days before graduation were a blur of graduation parties and preparations. Finally after all was said and done. The groups of friends and the student body as a whole were standing in front of the school populace in ceremony of their recognition of graduation.

Shary kept wringing her hands together as she tried to keep still but her body wouldn't listen. She almost resorted back to nail biting but stopped. The other students thought that maybe it had to do with the tension they were under for the ceremony but it was also more. She still hadn't talked to Kento and didn't know when she could talk to him. Sighing she groaned to herself. ~I wish this was over already.~

Hidden in their magic from prying eyes, two tigers and a dragon watched from a good viewing point, they could see everything from and anything. They were all smiling; happy to see the ones that they cared about were achieving a goal in life. Kibou and White Blaze both purred in content with Meiyo who rumbled softly in response. This was surely a sight.

As the ceremony finished with the presentation of diplomas, the mortarboards were thrown in the air and the class gave a cheer as a whole. Together the friends got together and finished what they had set out to do, and that was graduate from high school together.

Their Graduation Party was going to be held the next day after the senior class party that the school was hosting for the graduating class. They got together and Kibou and Meiyo came out of hiding in their smaller forms. Ryo knew that his long time friend was there and was happy with all that had gone on that day.

The others were chattering excitedly as the senior class party was going to be something different for them all to do. It was a kick off party of sorts for the rest of their adult lives.

The group was enjoying themselves, as were the two pets. Kibou sat in Ryo's lap and Meiyo shifted his weight from his usual perch on Cale's shoulder's to Shary's. She didn't mind at all and rubbed his head with a fingertip.

"Well this is it." Rowen said with a small smile. "In a week we'll be heading in different directions."

"Yeah, at least we will have e-mail and everything to keep in touch with." Kento spoke up. He looked over at Shary and knew that she wanted to talk to him. The others agreed that the e-mail would keep all of their phone bills down and that Mia would be a central communication point until they all had each otherís e-mails.

Sage was in thought, as he knew that he wasnít going very far and so would probably be able to use Miaís computer for e-mail purposes. Until they were all networked in communications again, it was going to be a stressful time for all.

~And you still have us,~ Kibou purred softly to them. Meiyo seemed to rumble in response and let one of his eyes open.

~We can take important messages from one place to anther. Even in the Dynasty should the need arise.~ He let his eye close again and looked to be in deep sleep.

"It's probably going to feel weird, not living close to each other." Shary was saying softly as she twirled a piece of her hair around her finger. "But the bond that we all share, and I don't mean armors. That is something I don't think can ever be broken. And for that I'm grateful."

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