Tsubasa was sketching when it started.
A vague sense of unease,
that feeling you get when you know something is wrong
but you can't quite put your finger on what.
The sensation made her so restless
that she abandoned her drawing and begin pacing,
trying to figure what was bothering her so much.
It didn't help.
Within seconds the anxiety had gotten worse,
an itch that she couldn't scratch.
Something was wrong.
It slammed into her like a freight train,
fast and unstoppable.
Fear was the first,
speeding her heartbeat and twisting her stomach.
Anger, no fury, was second.
Without conscious thought,
her hands curled into fists.
Underneath those two was worry.
Worry for self but also for . .
'Facet,' Tsubasa realized.
'Something's wrong with Facet and Adalina.'
She was certain.
Something had happened to Adalina and Facet.
She had been so distracted
that it took a moment for her
to notice the quiet flutter of wings
She looked up and sure enough,
she was surrounded by a
small swarm of her butterflies.
Including ones with the gold edged wings.
Some of which fluttered off and one that hovered in front of her.
Like the one before it seemed to say, 'this way.'
She followed it,
the rest of her swarm
trailing after her
like obedient ducklings.
It made getting through the crowds easier.
Unsurprisingly, no one wanted to get
in the way of the lady surrounded by berettaflies.
Consequently, it only took her minutes to get
from the garden to outside the SPOON base.
It was chaos.
There was mud everywhere,
dotted with abandoned brooms and hoses.
A crowd of people (and bugs) were laying
into someone with hands and feet.
She couldn't make out who it was
but had the strangest confidence
that he somewhat deserved it.
Some of the responding soups were
doing their best to break up the crowd.
Her butterfly led her past that
and to the now familiar figure of Facet
lying very still on the ground.
'No,' Tsubasa thought and hurried over.
She only had the most basic of first aid training
but it was better than nothing.
He wasn't dead.
In fact, he seemed to be coming around
if the groan was any indication.
By now, someone had apparently realized
that there was something else going on
beside a crowd of people beating up some dude
for some reason.
Namely that one of the city's heroes
was lying unconscious on the ground
and the only person with him
was a young woman with wings
and a swarm of butterflies.
Butterflies that looked like berettaflies.
No one moved, not even the people trying to break up the crowd.
'Idiots,' Tsubasa thought and scowled.
Perhaps it was an uncharitable thought
but her mentor was lying on the ground
and a friend was missing, kidnapped.
“Well, is anyone with more medical training going to help Facet or not?”
That seemed to break the spell.
One of the nurses came over,
eying the swarm with fear
but they just fluttered out of her way.
After that, the nurse apparently just
decided to ignore them in favor of her patient.
Facet didn't seem to be hurt
by whatever had knocked him out.
Through he did seem a little disoriented
when he came around.
It wasn't a question.
“Someone took her.”
She gestured to her swarm.
“Some of my butterflies are following her.”
She was certain of that,
she could feel them going follow-seek along
that thread of Adalina that linked the two of them.
It was thin, more wispy than spider-silk, but there.
There were other threads.
They were just as faint and almost unnoticeable
in the blaze of feeling pulsing down Adalina's thread.
She'd figure them out later.
After Adalina was safe.
An idea popped into her head.
She looked over at Facet.
“Can you see through my butterflies' eyes like you can other insects?”
A moment, then he nodded.
It wasn't a very nice smile
but Tsubasa didn't feel like
being very nice to
whoever had taken Adalina.
They would find her.
They just needed to refine
this glimmer of an idea into a plan.