The boy trudges through thick white snow and ice, the heavy onslaught of winter ravages his cold frame. A loose white robe and a black bodysuit provide little protection against the violent cold winds, as he travels westward.
Who am I.... where.... where am I going?
The cold shocks his miserable feet as he walks, he could swear his feet are getting frozen.
What is my name....? Why can't I remember......?
He stops, sniffing. He knows it. He hears the thudding of their paws as they approach swiftly.
His pace slowly begins to increase, into a full on run. Wolves.
A pack of savage,snarling wolves chase after Kado, menacingly barking at him as they run.
The boy runs away as fast as he can, leaping over various logs, stumps, crashing through thorn bushes, which leaves long cuts on his face and body, anything to get away from the wolves. His vision blurs with a red haze, as fear begins to gnaw at his mind.
Who am I? What am I? Why is this happening?! Why? Why? WHY?
The wolves are nearing even closer
The red begins to completely over take his vision, and he begins to stumble and falter more and more. Finally reeling in the overwhelming terror, he gives into collapse, his terror becoming terrible bloodlust few save for a demon could match. His body changes and twists into the form of a large black wolf with red eyes, and lets out a violent roar of a howl as its much larger paws rampage towards the smaller, white wolves, its teeth bared in a mindless, feral desire for death and blood. It leaps at the first wolf, crushing the wolf's skull with its paw's impact, and it savagely sinks its teeth into a second, tearing into its throat.
The other two begin to whimper in fear and run off back into the woods
The black wolf rages after them for a moment, but eventually turns back when it cannot keep up with them, and after finally clearing the forest and out into a valley between the mountains, the wolf slowly morphs back into the boy, whose eyes slowly lose the red gleam, and with it slowly the boy begins remembering.
I.... I.... I. am.... my name.... ....is.... Ka-do....
Kado slowly travels down the high foothills of the surrounding mountains, his mind still clouded by mists. It is early morning, and he can hear various animals stirring for the day. He spies a house in the distance, and hopes to find food. He slowly makes for the house, keeping an eye out for anyone who might be inhabiting the residence.
He approaches the nearest window, and peaks inside, seeing no one, he begins trying to open the window.
An old man is staring face-to-face with Kado from the other side of the window
Man: May I help you?
Kado panics, and begins fleeing back into the snowy plains in a panic, before tripping over a hidden hole in the ground and falling into a slight ridge, landing on his face in the cold snow.
Man: *exits his house with a lantern to his side and follows the footsteps to the hole Kado fell through* Soooo, do you need my help or are you gonna scurry of again?
Kado weakly raises his head, and his stomach violently growls clear as day. The boy from the man's observations looks little older than ten, maybe eleven.
Man: Grab on. *throws a rope down to Kado*
Kado grabs onto the rope and weakly climbs up, though it takes a toll on his already weary body.
Man: *pulls him up out of the hole and places him on the ground, then rounds up his rope*
"T-t-thank.... ....you...." He stutters, from cold and fatigue.
Man: *puts a blanket around Kado and heads back up to his canon*
Kado timidly follows the man, sharp hunger pains raking his body.
They both make it inside
Man: Sit anywhere you like.
Kado crawls over to the man's fireplace, laying down rather like a dog next to the fire.
After a few minutes, the old man comes out with a bowl of ramen and places it in front of Kado's face
Kado looks at the food for a moment, and he slowly sits up with a soft grunt, then slowly begins eating, his trembling slowly eases as he sits by the fire and food slowly fills his belly.
Man: You sip the noodles, not bite.
Kado silently nods. "......Yes.... ...sir...."
Man: Where did you come from, kid?
"....I don't.... know.... All I remember is the forests.... and wolves.... ....so many wolves...."
Man: Man dude, those wolves be gettin' annoying. They bite me a few times and their dead next second.
Kado sits silently, as he sips the noodles, giving a rather desolate look to the already ragged boy. The man can see from his eyes he's a shapeshifter, and is covered in various still fresh wounds and scars, some of them look slightly infected, he figures the kid has been traveling for a while, and wonders if there was a clan war or if the village was raided, as he certainly looks like one of the village shapeshifters from further East.
Man: Sooo, you dont remember anything before you came out here?
Kado shakes his head. "I.... I've been... ...lost. ....I don't remember.... how long."
Man: Hm....well I think I know where might have come from,kid.
Kado blinks, after which he clutches his head as though in some sort of pain.
Man: We an possibly go in the morning. I'm abit tired right now and it'slate. you can sleep near the fire if you want, just dont get too close.
Kado silently nods, and curls up in a ball under the blanket the man gave him by the fireplace.
Man: *goes to sleep on the couch*
Kado sometime in the middle of the night wakes up, fighting back fierce pains, and choking on fiercesome screams of agony. He thrashes wildly on the floor for about a minute, before finally coming to a rest, breathing irregularly and pupils dilated in terror. His mind still explodes with pain, even as the physical pain eases.
Man: *looks at Kado terrifyingly confused* You ok, kid?
Rasping for breath, he clutches his head with both hands, sitting up. "Pain.... ....it hurts...."
Man: Where is it hurting you? Your mind? I got some pills for that, you know?
Another flash of pain and a momentary vision of a sword impaling him in the chest leaves him spasming on the floor helplessly again, and as the man approaches the boy he catches a glimpse of something red, and opens the boy's shirt open to see several wounds that strike him as stab wounds, all located around the heart, several ripped open by his episodes, and slowly leaking blood.
Man: Who kid....when did you get these?Do you have some abusive parents or something?
The man notices Kado is not responsive, and it occurs to the man the boy needs medical attention before the wounds can get worse.
Man: Well, screw tomorrow then. Come on,kid. We're headin' out.
Kado weakly follows, the blanket still wrapped firmly around his body.
Man: *exits the cabin with his lantern next to his side and begins to walk into the dark cold* Actually. It just came to mind that you might have also came from the city. As far as I know you're a shapeshifter, right?
Kado's eyes faintly change color from black to a brief tint of gold, then changes back to black again, in response.
Man: So instead of you originating from that village, you might come from that other village near Chinmoku.
Kado blinks. "....Chinmoku....?" He seems confused.
Man: Yea, that great big city. it's an magnificent sight,man. You just gotta see it.
Kado still looks confused. "Where are you taking me?"
Man: I don't know. We might have to go to the closest village to see if we can get you some help.
Kado sees large buildings far in the distance. "....What...... are those?"
Man: That's the city. I'm surprised you can see at all due to this everyday darkness.
"Is that where we're going? Is there a healer there?" The boy's voice rings with curiosity, even as he leaves a tiny trail of blood behind him.
Man: Sthere's bound to be. Gonna be really pissed if their isn't.
They arrive at the edge of the city, and a rugged looking officer stops them at the entrance.
"What in blazes are you two vagabonds doing out here this late at night? Come to crawl to your grave old man?" He laughs.
Man: Oh, shove a dong down your throat, gay boy.
The smile comes off the man's face. "What do you two want?" His face becomes a bit more serious, if not a bit angry. He appears to have a shockstick drawn.
Man: I am hear to give this kid medical attention. He appears to be amnesiac and doesn't know how he ended up in the woods and he is bleeding from externals injuries.
The man looks Kado over, then sighs. "Not another shapeshifter street rat... I swear we get more and more orphans every year... very well.... Artemis!"
A woman with short blonde hair in a Captain of the Guard uniform comes out of a nearby station. "What is it?" She asks shortly.
"We got a wounded shapeshifter orphan again. Mind taking them to the hospital?" The man sighs.
She rolls her eyes at him in annoyance. "That's supposed to be your job. I don't know why we pay you." She looks over at the man who brought Kado, and Kado himself. "Alright, come with me. You guys are lucky you came by this entrance. The hospital is close by. Stick close to me now."
She starts to walk off.
They both follow the lady
She leads them to a tall building, where a admissions manager takes one look at them and says, "West wing."
The woman, apparently called Artemis, speaks up as they walk. "You his guardian or something, sir?"
Man: I guess for the time being. I found him peakin' through my window and he scrambled of as if I was gonna kill him or something. He doesn't remember how he got into the woods though, but he survived a pack of wolves.
She sighs. "For the time being would be correct. Do you have any citizenship with Yogore City? Or do you come from outside boundaries? We can't let a certified civilian take care of an orphan. No offense, it's just state policy that orphans are to fall under state care if no one has a legal claim to them."
Man: I visit here sometimes to sell my fruit and make trade with most of the shifties there. Does that count?
"Ehhh.... if you've got the land to grow fruit then you're probably not from our boundaries, I'm afraid. We may have to take him into state care."
Kado looks up at the man. "....What is she talking about? State.... care?"
Man: That means that these guys are gonna have to take care of you, sadly.
She leads them to a room with a doctor and nurse with a table for operating. "In here please." Kado follows the man inside, but very nervously.
Man: Don't worry, kid. This is what needs to be done so you can feel better. Just hold still and let them do their thing.
When the doctor motions for Kado to get on the table, Kado looks extremely nervous, but when the nurse offers her hand, Kado reluctantly takes it and she helps him get on and lay down.
"We're going to make you feel sleepy so it doesn't hurt as much when we heal you, ok little guy?" Kado fearfully nods, and she attaches a device to Kado's nose and mouth, and he soon begins to fall asleep.
The doctor indicates a space where a transparent panel is in the floor. "We're going to raise the glass wall, I'd like for you to keep out of the operating section, sir."
Man: Hm? Okay. *steps out the way*
The doctor and the nurse begins to quickly operate on Kado's wounds, first closing them with stitching to stop the bleeding, then begins working with healing magic.
Man: *man pulls out a black pomegranate, splits it in half and begins to eat the seeds out of it while he watches them operate on Kado*
Eventually they finish, and the doctor walks over to him. "Did you find this kid in a battlefield or something? His body showed signs of immense elemental magic damage. You and I both know the odds of such magic being in the hands of just ordinary raiders is almost zero, especially out here in the Midlands. In fact, I'm surprised he didn't die from the twelve different stabs to the heart he took, from what seems to be katana blades. This kid isn't your average kid.... ....there's gotta be more to this than what we're seeing. I'd like to do some tests, if you wouldn't mind."
Man: I suppose, but be quick with it. I should be in bed by by now.
The doctor does some tests on Kado, then slowly walks over to the man. "Would you believe me if I told you that boy is actually fifteen?"
Man: Man dude, In this world, I'd believe just about anything.
"It explains a few things.... hmm. Well, he is healed, but he'll be a while before he wakes up. I'm afraid if you don't have a real legal claim to him, he'll have to be taken in by the city as soon as he is stable enough to go. ...If he will turn out alright is anyone's guess. Sometimes half of the orphans never really pick themselves up. We can hope that won't be the case but...."
Man: But how can I not have a legal claim for an amnesiac boy lost in the woods? All because I don't live close to you guys? Dude, that is some bull right there.
"If you had a full time residence or place of business or just property in the city in general, you could apply then. The city has this policy of taking in orphans like him so individuals who might be dangerous can't just claim him. The city keeps track of any orphan in the system, so if you wanted to get him later after you fulfilled requirements, you could get him then. It also depends on the child's willingness to leave the program of course. If he wanted to stay, you really couldn't force him to." The doctor sighs.
"I'm not an expert on the laws, I know a fair share because of how many orphans tend to get picked up these days. It's sad how they end up torn away from home like they do. And I more often than not see them never really recover."
Man: I see. Well i'm not getting any older so I'll see what I can do.
"I wish you luck. I'll make sure the boy is taken care of."
Man: Hmm. Where should I start?
"I would suggest going to town hall and asking them. I'm a doctor, not a legal residency professional."
Man: Ok then and where is that?
"Central district. The center of town, won't be hard to miss."