II. Arrival

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Dai left Aria and returned to the indoor passenger area of the ferry. Inside were a great many other young Gifted, all socializing and chatting excitedly to each other. Towards the middle of the rows of seats sat a girl with long blonde hair and bright pink eyes, dressed in a black leather jacket and a purple t-shirt. Beside her sat a boy identical in appearance to Dai, but with red eyes and a red t-shirt with an open black vest. Both were on their phones, with luggage set in front of them.

Dai approached them and sat next to the girl.
"That was a short time on deck," the girl said.
"I decided I had enough sea air," Dai said.
"Where we're going there's gonna be a lot of sea air, so get used to it," the boy chuckled.
Dai sighed, "I told you I didn't wanna come."
"And I told you you'd love it, and you will! Just because you have a different Gift than us doesn't mean you have to be left out!"
"It's just... I feel like I stick out like a sore thumb."

"Kai's right, you'll like it, so stop whining," the girl said.
"Raina, please," Dai huffed.
Raina rolled her eyes, "You're making something out of nothing. You should feel special 'cause of your Gift."
"Yeah! We Frays have always had fire, but here you are with ice!" Kai exclaimed.

Dai looked at his siblings; his twin brother Kai and younger sister Raina with an unsure expression.
Dai looked and caught sight of a small group of teens from a few rows over glancing at them.
"People are looking at us..." Dai said, pulling his hood even further over his head.
"I mean, we're not famous but it's not like people don't know us," Kai said, "Let 'em stare, they're probably just jealous."
Dai looked back at the group, taking note of two boys and two girls who stood out to him.

One of the boys had fair skin with subtle yet distinct asian features, and styled dark brown hair with light blue eyes. He wore a black hoodie with a yellow lightning bolt design on the chest. He was arguably pretty attractive. He also seemed to be the most uncomfortable one there.
The other boy had tanned skin, styled black hair, and wore a dark green t-shirt with a black jacket. He had a dark skinned girl on his arm with long black hair, and she wore a very professional looking outfit; button-up shirt, skirt, high socks and fancy shoes.
The other girl had blonde hair tied in a ponytail, and she wore shorts and a t-shirt.

"Jace, did you see the Fray kids?" the blonde girl asked.
Jace had spaced out, and snapped back to reality, "Oh, uh... yeah."
"I just can't believe they're here," she continued, "They're gonna show us all up."
"They're just a couple of twinks and a girl," the tanned boy said, "How much trouble can they really be?"
"Clearly you are still as ignorant as ever, Hunter," the dark skinned girl said, "They are the best in Youth Gifted Battling for Washington. From what I hear, they trained all their lives."
"Tch, whatever, Mel," Hunter said, "I just know I hope our dorms are close together."
"Mel", or rather, Melany, rolled her eyes.

"Anyways, Jace, I have such plans for us!!" the blonde girl said, "Elfen Island has some wonderfully romantic spots! You'll just love them!"
"Oh, uh... nice, Janice," Jace said.
Janice's hands went to her hips indignantly.
"That didn't sound very enthusiastic," she huffed.
"Oh, no no, I am excited," Jace reassured with a smile, "I just..."
"You just what, dude?" Hunter asked.
"I kinda... wanted to say to 'hi' to them," Jace said.
"To who?" Janice asked, "The Frays?"
"Well, yeah, I mean, it doesn't seem like anybody else is talking to them," he said.
"So what?" Hunter put in, "They're minding their business like we're minding ours."
"Well..." Melany said, "I think you should do it, Jace."
Jace smiled, "I promise I'll be right back."

He then went over and stood in front of the Frays. Dai caught notice of him but quickly looked down, pretending he hadn't seen him.
"Uh, hey," Jace said awkwardly, "My name's Jace. Jace Verrater."
Kai and Raina looked up from their phones and saw he had his hand outstretched.
Kai stood up eagerly and took it, shaking it firmly.
"Nice to meet ya!" he said, "I'm Kai, and this is Raina and Dai."
"Nice to meet you all," Jace said, "I mean, I already kind of knew who you guys were, but I just wanted to say hi."
"Well, it's appreciated," Kai smiled, "Is this your first time going to New Haven?"
"No, actually, this is my second year here," Jace said, "I know it's you guys' first year though."
Kai chuckled, "Yeah, and we're excited, right guys?"
"Hella," Raina said.
Dai said nothing.
Jace noticed this.
"Is... he okay?" he asked.
"Oh, yeah, yeah, he's just a little shy," Kai said, "Always has been, but he's super cool once you get to know him!"
Jace smiled, and looked back to see Janice eyeing him.

"I should get back to my friends, but it was great meeting you!" he said.
"You to, dude," Kai grinned, and waved as Jace returned to his group.

"Happy?" Janice asked, "In my humble opinion, there was no reason to do that."
"I was just saying hi," Jace said, "It is their first year here."
"I think it was quite a nice thing you did, Jace," Melany smiled, "They're basically celebrities around here, I know I don't have the courage to say something to them."

Just then, the ferry lurched slightly and the captain came over the loudspeaker.

"Attention Gifted, we have docked at New Haven Port, please grab your belongings and make your way to the exit ramps and proceed to the New Haven theater."

The Gifted onboard then hustled and bustled to get their luggage and get ready to get off the Mother Nature. Jace, Janice, Hunter, and Melany grabbed their bags and were heading off.
As they did, Janice was still going on about the sights on Elfen Island, but Jace was hardly listening, for as they were getting off, he made eye contact with a pretty redhead girl with ice blue eyes like his, making her way towards the exit ramps with her luggage.

She looked at him briefly and a look of awe on her face, before breaking out of it and hurrying off, being followed by a short brown-haired girl.

"Pretty hair..." Jace muttered under his breath.
"What?" Janice asked, and Jace blushed of embarrassment, realizing what he just said.
"Oh, uh, your hair is good today," he said, "I don't know if I told you that or not."
"You didn't, and thank you! You rarely compliment me so, I really appreciate that!" Janice jeered.

And they hurried off.

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