The Alchemist And Philia
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by Nikuchan Nikuchan and scutoid studiosscutoid studios


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The Alchemist




It was a peaceful day in Level 1, around 200 years ago. Philia, avatar of Love, had been notified of the existence of a new avatar of Comprehension to replace the previous. Enthusiastic to meet someone else like her, she immediately set off to meet him.

She wondered what he'd look like, how he'd act, what kind of things he would like… She even considered going back to make him a gift but decided against it. No time to waste, after all! There was no turning back now — she could sense him just around the corner.

The goddess quietly looked around for the mysterious avatar, only to stumble upon him as he was frantically trying to collect his bearings.

"Oh my gosh!! You're a faceling?! That's awesome! I've never seen someone like you before! It's so nice to meet you!"

She was bursting with happy energy, analyzing him with her pink eyes.

"Yes, yes, pleased to meet you… but who do you think you're talking to? 'Faceling'… I must say, I'm not familiar with a term like that."

He had a happy nonchalance to him, but he was clearly confused by her demeanour. He'd never met anyone else before, but he thought this was certainly a peculiar first greeting.

"Oh! A Faceling is a faceless entity. Usually, they can't communicate verbally at all — but you can! Isn't that amazing? You're very similar to how I imagined you, I knew I was right!"

She examined his glasses from a distance, wondering what kind of power they held. They were gilded, just like the rest of him.

"Silly me, forgetting to introduce myself! I'm Philia, the goddess of Love. You must be the god of Comprehension, and a version of the— n-never-mind."

She quickly grew embarassed and took a few breaths to compose herself.

"A version of the..?"

"Don't worry about it, you're new. You need to get to grips with life before we get into silly things like that, haha!"

Philia carried herself in such a light and breezy manner that the Alchemist was compelled not to question her further and kill the mood. Still, he kept his curiosity in his back pocket. He'd look into her later.

"I suppose that's right. I'd introduce myself, but I don't have a name. Call me the Alchemist."

She pretended to be surprised in an attempt not to worry him. She didn't want to look weird or odd; she'd come clean sometime, just not yet.

"No name? Well, the Alchemist works just fine. Why don't I show you around? You need a place to stay in after all! There are so many things I can teach you, I can't wait!!!"

Some pink hearts started floating around her, bottling her happiness clearly didn't work. It's pretty visible.

"I suppose I do need somewhere to stay! But don't try anything funny… I'm not quite sure what's going on yet, but I'm going to figure it out. That goes for everything — even you, Philia!"

It would have been an intimidating sentiment from somebody else, but he was new to this realm.

Besides, she already knew him very well. Why wouldn't she trust him?






Dear Alchemist,

This is a letter for you, to remind you just how much I cherish you.

You and your all-seeing glasses always had something new to show me! I remember that time you engineered me a perfume that was so tailored to me that all these years later I still wear it… not to mention the pages and pages of notes that came with it. You should take more pride in your writing, it kept me hooked all day! After I figured out your handwriting, that is… I miss how enthusiastic you used to be about your research, but I suppose I should have expected us to grow jaded over time.

I was quite lonely in that period, but your presence filled a void in my heart. You let me stick around you and watch your brilliant mind at work, I won't stop thanking you for that, never. You always understood me more than I could ever understand myself, without you, I don't think I would be the Philia I am right now.

I wonder if you remember the first time I presented Fengári to you. It was quite difficult to get around convincing you-know-who, but with a bit of luck, we managed! Remember how their eyes lit up seeing the books and the papers you owned? It was absolutely adorable… Fengári was never much of an extrovert, but you took the time to suit their needs and their shyness. You are the only one who tried learning sign language for them. You have a heart of gold, my dear Alchemist, quite literally! Mentoring them was the best thing you could do for them, they could finally find some happiness despite their isolation… My poor Fengári…

I miss them, I miss them as much as you do. I know things aren't the same, how could they be? Without Fengári by our side… everything is darker. I will be strong for their sake and I know you too will also find strength in this sea of nothing. We will get them out, I swore on it.

Despite everything, you still stand by my side. No matter how much of a burden I feel like, you do not consider me such. Learning how to love myself is difficult, but you make it a better experience. Your silly antics and your disguised attempts to check on me are proof enough of that. You may be quite odd, but so am I.

My fondest memory with you, was when you showed me how to create a potion that would create pink heart-shaped clouds! It was lovely, believe me, I've kept the little bottle as a memory of it. If we ever make potions together in the future, I promise to not burn everything like I almost did that time! I am not so clumsy anymore; pinky promise.

My dear Alchemist, I hope you appreciate that you and I are closer than I am to most. The day you figured out my biggest secret, I was worried you'd freak out… but you just had a million questions to ask about it! I trusted you with the truth back then in a heartbeat, and I'd do it again. Would you do that too?

Discovering you here, again… I hope I can be friends with you everywhere, just like this. I wish I could do it all over again, to be honest. To return to how things were. Maybe then, we could always be happy. I wonder if you feel the same way sometimes, but I guess you'd be more focused on the future. "You can't change the past, Philia! So what's the point of blaming yourself?

…She always used to say that. You're so alike, even if you don't see it that way. I guess I still have some guilt about what happened… but you've given me another chance. I think you're right about the past and the future — I should focus on the version of you that exists here and now! Maybe then, we'll all survive. Even with our scars, we will never be forgotten…

For Allseer's sake, for Fengári, for the sake of all those who loved me… I hope this time, I can be a good friend. For as long as you wish to keep me around, I will follow after you with a smile. The same smile you give me when we are together. I plead with you never to drop it.

One day, when everything is over, we three will sit by a calm tree and read a nice book like we used to. All of us.

Until then, I can only dream.

With love, Philia.

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