If he saw a fellow association member who was devoting too much energy to the group, at the expense of his or her personal work, or simply becoming too tired, Matija would worry for that person, even though he himself was unstinting in his efforts, always working on a thousand and one things at a time. In the meantime, Matija had fallen ill. I wanted to go see him, but he was not feeling up to it. I was able to embrace Marija. I could not bring myself to tour Zagreb. For me Zagreb was Matija, and we agreed that I would come back when he was better, so that he could take me around the city.
Meanwhile, 8 months ago, I was diagnosed with a tumour of the pancreas. At first, I could not bring myself to tell Matija, wishing to spare him the bad news. But then I wrote to let him know, seeing that his smile, the way he fought back, his ability to always think of others, no matter what, gave me no small amount of strength during the months of treatment.
Matija helped me carry on, and I was hoping that he would make it through the worst of his troubles as well. The last time I wrote him just happened to be August 26 th , around pm, to let him know that I was turning the corner, that the chemotherapy had worked, that I was getting used to the idea of my tumour being a chronic condition.
That it was better to live fighting the tumour than to die from it…. I was writing this and he was dying…. This phrase will be printed in mind, so that I never forget it whenever I feel like complaining. Matija was someone who truly made a difference, one of a select few and far from saying this simply because he has passed away, it was how I spoke of him from the moment we met. He was someone who lived every moment of his life, always with a smile, making the most of every occasion for human relations, constantly creating and imagining something new: he was somebody who truly belonged on this earth.
Which makes it that much harder to come to grips with his death.
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Previous Story Coffe! In 5 mins. The girl thanks the shopkeep and then notices the sun setting outside the window. Red-Haired Girl: It's getting dark already? Grampy's gonna be worried! I gotta get home! Red-Haired Girl: Hey, what's your name? What should I call you? Narmaya: My name is Narmaya. I belong to a crew led by a person named Captain. Red-Haired Girl: Nice to meet you, Narmaya! My name is Heh heh heh! Listen and be amazed!
Fif: I'm one of the Eternals! My name's Fif! You're an Eternal? Fif: Hehehe. I told you—I'm awesome! Fif: Yikes, I really gotta go! Let's hang out again sometime, Narmaya! Fif waves, beaming, and dashes out of the shop. Narmaya stands in a daze as she watches her go. The Eternals are known far and wide as the strongest crew in all the skies. Narmaya has heard rumors about a skyfarer named Fif belonging to this legendary crew. And according to those rumors, Narmaya's uncle Eahta cares dearly about Fif.
Narmaya: When Fif mentioned her Grampy, she must have been talking about Zanba Or rather, Eahta Narmaya: So I guess she's worth paying attention to I see Lost in thought, Narmaya doesn't even touch the tea sitting on the table in front of her. Captain and crew notice that Narmaya has been acting strange recently. Fif comes to visit, and the crew realizes that Narmaya's odd behavior was caused by the two's teahouse talk about Eahta. They find Narmaya training on the mountain where they first met her, lamenting her own weakness. Captain shakes her in an attempt to snap her out of it, and Fif gets angry at her for hating herself and challenges her to battle.
The next day, the crew notices that Narmaya is acting strangely. Vyrn: Usually she'd be up and fussing over us already.
Worried, Captain heads to Narmaya's room and reaches to open the door. But just as the captain is about to touch the knob, the door opens to reveal Narmaya standing there. Lyria: Narmaya, are you okay? You're not sick or anything, are you? Narmaya: No, I'm feeling just fine! I'm feeling so well, in fact, that I overslept a bit. Narmaya: But more importantly, did you all eat breakfast?
Or shall I whip something up? Vyrn: Hahaha. Same ol' Butterfly Girl. Vyrn is relieved, but Captain can't shake the feeling that there's something off about Narmaya's behavior. After that day, Narmaya's condition seems to improve. A lot. Be it monster hunting, shopping, or guarding a client, she handles every request with speed and finesse. Narmaya: Captain , Captain! Is there anything I can help with? Vyrn: What the heck! What about that mission you just accepted? Narmaya: The monster hunting mission? I already took care of it! Vyrn: Seriously? But thanks to you, we're all outta requests.
Narmaya: R-really? Then how about I do some shopping? Or I'd be happy to help with the cooking and cleaning! Narmaya: Whatever happens, you can count on me. I'll take care of everything! Lyria: Don't you think Narmaya's acting a bit odd? Vyrn: Hmm. I've got a case of deja vu. Lyria: She acted like this once before when someone mentioned Eahta of the Eternals. Lyria: I'm worried something bad happened Captain , would you mind talking to her? Captain nods and decides to speak with Narmaya the next day. The following day, the crew make their way toward Narmaya's room.
But they have a sudden unexpected visitor. Fif not in crew. She is an extremely powerful mage who joined the strongest crew in all the skies on Eahta's recommendation. Captain crossed paths with her previously while working to awaken a revenant weapon.
Since then, Fif comes to visit the Grandcypher from time to time. Fif: I came to hang out with Narmaya! I told her I would! Fif: Yeah! She helped me out the other day. And then we talked about our families and got to know each other!
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I bragged about Grampy a whole bunch! Vyrn: Grampy? Are you talking about Eahta? Fif: Yeah, of course! I only have the one Grampy! Lyria: U-um, Fif You mentioned that you and Narmaya talked about your families. When was that? Fif tilts her head to one side and recounts the day she met Narmaya. It was the same day that Narmaya started acting strangely. Fif: Huh? What's wrong? Did something happen? Seeming to sense something wrong, Fif bombards the crew with questions, her voice full of worry.
Captain decides to explain the situation to her. The captain tells Fif about Narmaya's relationship to Eahta, as well as about Narmaya's recent strange behavior. Fif's shoulders slump. Fif: Is that true? So Narmaya's uncle is my Grampy? Fif: He's not some bully who'd ignore Narmaya! Lyria: But Narmaya doesn't seem like someone who would lie Fif: I didn't mean that! I could tell that just by talking to her! Narmaya's not a liar!
Vyrn: Huh? You're kinda contradicting yourself Fif: It's all a bunch of jumbo mumbo! I'm so confused! Fif: Argh! I'll just go talk to Narmaya myself! That'll be the fastest way to sort all this out! The captain nods and heads toward Narmaya's room with Fif. Captain and the others approach Narmaya's room. At first Captain thinks Narmaya may have simply gone out on an errand. But seeing the katana lying on top of the neatly made bed, the captain feels a sense of dread. Narmaya has never once left her katana behind. Lyria: I-I'm going to go look for her! The crew searches the ship for Narmaya, but she's nowhere in sight.
Fif: Hmm, Captain , can you think of anywhere Narmaya might have gone? Vyrn: She does go there a lot. But she wasn't there when we looked earlier.
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There is a moment of silence, and then Captain suddenly remembers something. Captain tells the others that Narmaya might have gone to the place where they first met her. Go to "Continue 1". Vyrn: We might as well check there! Not like we have any other leads. The crew head to the mountain where they met Narmaya. When they reach the mountain, an unbelievable scene awaits them. The trees in the area have been snapped in two, and there are deep gouges in the ground. And standing amidst what looks like the aftermath of a storm is none other than Narmaya.
I'm sorry for leaving without telling you Vyrn: You should be sorry! We were worried about you! Why didn't you say anything? Narmaya: I did a lot of thinking Narmaya: So I decided to come back to this mountain and start over from square one. Hearing the weariness in Narmaya's voice, Captain inquires as to what she's been doing.
Narmaya: I've been practicing basic forms that don't require a sword. Fif: Ohhh. So that's why you left your katana behind. Vyrn: Hang on! You did all this just by practicing forms? Fif: See! You're amazing, just like I said! Narmaya: I'm not amazing at all I'm a complete failure Narmaya: I don't have the right to even hold a sword. I still lack skill I need to become stronger. Much, much stronger Narmaya: Stronger and stronger! I have to get stronger! Vyrn: H-hey, Narmaya You don't have to obsess over it so much Lyria: T-that's not true!
You're strong! You've protected us more times than I can remember! Narmaya: But it's not enough! Zanba still won't acknowledge me! Narmaya: Because I'm weak! Weaker than Fif! So very, very weak! Narmaya: I'm so weak and pathetic Narmaya: That's why I have to get stronger! Much, much stronger! I have to! Narmaya: How do I become strong? I don't know what to do anymore. Her smile is so fragile and empty that it looks like it could shatter at any moment. Seeing Narmaya looking so incredibly weak and pitiful, Captain acts without thinking.
W-what are you doing? I'm so sorry, Narmaya! Fif: Hm I don't think you need to apologize! I get how Captain 's feeling! Fif: The captain wants Narmaya to snap out of it! Fif: Captain and the others love you so much, Narmaya! So why do you keep hating yourself? Narmaya: How I feel about myself has nothing to do with this Fif: It does too! It has everything to do with this! Fif: If you can't figure that out, Grampy's never gonna acknowledge you! Fif: You'll just stay really, really, reeeally weak forever! Fif: There's no point in talking to you right now!
Fif raises her staff and begins to channel magic. Fif: I can't calm down! Everyone's gonna keep being sad if nothing changes! And I don't want that! Fif: I'm gonna fight with all I've got, so you better do the same, Narmaya! Fif: If you don't, I can't promise you won't get hurt! Realizing that there's no use trying to stop Fif, Captain tosses Narmaya her katana.
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Narmaya catches the sword and draws it from its scabbard, her face full of confusion. Fif and Narmaya's fierce battle comes to a halt as Narmaya falls to one knee. Fif insists that Narmaya will never become strong as long as she continues to hate herself. Narmaya comes to the realization that, even if she is unable to acknowledge herself, Captain and the crew acknowledge her.
Having found new resolve, she battles Fif once more. Narmaya, bewildered, does nothing but dodge Fif's attacks at first. Finally Narmaya begins to fight back, intending to bring an end to the relentless assault, but the battle continues for quite some time. Fif's magic transforms the terrain around them, as trees are blown away and the ground is opened up beneath their feet. Narmaya swings her katana as she flits about like a butterfly, avoiding each and every one of Fif's cataclysmic attacks. With a sound like the crack of a whip, a cloud floating high above them is split in two from the force of Narmaya's blow.
The crew watches the intense battle, speechless. There is a pause as Narmaya falls to one knee. Narmaya: I'm weak Completely hopeless Fif: You don't get it at all, Narmaya! Fif: I'm strong, but you're strong too! Fif: Captain and the others agree! Couldn't you guys tell by watching our fight? But Narmaya's weak because she won't stop hating herself! Fif: I love myself! I love that I'm strong and awesome! Fif: Even if Grampy didn't acknowledge me, I'd just acknowledge myself! Fif: And that's why I'm strong!