The Butterfly Dragon: The Two Butterflies - Episode 06 (New Artwork Added August 12, 2023 3:30 PM EST)

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Note: The excerpts from the previous episode will not appear in this episode, as it is its own self contained story, from beginning to end. Episode 07 will reconnect with the events of Episode 05, integrating what happens in this story and continue the main plotline.

Some of the Toronto attractions presented in this story are functionally different from the story itself. So just in case you visit Toronto and attend one of these attractions and find the experience to be unlike what I've presented here, please note that some embellishments were made in the interest of influencing policy at these venues, in the hopes that the Government might look into ways to add to these Toronto experiences for local attendees and tourists both. 

One such example might be to allow private food vendors (of the mobile hot dog or other food product cart variety for example) to purchase licenses to operate within Ontario Place itself, giving Toronto full control over how many such licenses are allowed to be active at one time. Such licenses could be restricted to specific zones, and include aspects such as vendor density (one or more vendors per zone) so as not to over populate the attraction with food vendors and to minimize the costs incurred to handle litter management.

Where it involves the actual engineering and architecture of these attractions, I've made every possible effort to be as accurate as possible.

Health And Nutrition: Throughout this and other episodes of The Butterfly Dragon: The Two Butterflies series, there are many instances where the little girl Warai Jeong-Min Tokama undergoes a shortage of calories that arises from the use of her unique abilities. In order to replenish herself, she usually spends much time thereafter consuming large amounts of high calorie food, without the hit of weight gain. This aspect of the character is used in a fictional context and in no way, should any children (or adults) ever follow her dietary example. 

It is highly recommended that every child maintain a healthy balanced diet of nutritious foods in modest consumption, as directed by their parents and their doctor.

The Butterfly Dragon: The Two Butterflies - Episode 06

Start Of The Day

Fiona arrived at the front door of Commerce Court having taken the streetcar from her home in the Toronto suburb of Leslieville. She quickly passed through the revolving door and made her way along the marble (or was it polished granite?) foyer, her heels clicking as she walked.

Two elevators arrived, their doors simultaneously opening as a crowd divided and slowly sorted itself out between them. Fiona looked to one, which was full, so she quickly jumped in the other, which was also full.

"Could you get the button for me?" she asked the person nearest the button panel.

"I can barely move. What floor?" the man asked her.

"Thirty-six please," she said politely.

"Sure thing," the man managed to get his hand up and press the button she'd requested.

The elevator then suddenly stopped at the eighteenth floor, and a wall of people pushed her out of the elevator as they tried to get by her. By the time she had her bearings, the elevator doors had closed again and left without her.

"Alright. So that's how its going to be?" she spoke aloud, perhaps directing her words towards the manifestation of circumstances in the flesh.

The next elevator arrived (after she'd pressed the button to call it) thirty seconds later. Another wall of people poured out, though this time she kept her sights on the elevator and the people parted to pass her. She simply walked down the middle and got on the half empty elevator and pressed the thirty-six button on the panel.

The elevator quickly whisked off again on its flight upwards, stopping two more times before it had reached her floor. She left the only other person on the elevator alone as she stepped into the thirty-sixth floor lobby and entered the offices of Gomery/Oscarson/Nedrick Investments.

She walked through the familiar reception area, perturbed to see that the receptionist she'd greeted everyday for the last six years was not at her desk.

"Hmmm, something's off if Belinda isn't here," Fiona once again thought aloud.

Fiona made her way to the coffee station only to find that nobody had made any coffee that morning. She quickly went through the cupboards and found the coffee and filters and began making it herself. When she'd started the process, she went to her office, passing the cubicles along the way only to find that each one of them was empty.

"Oh dear. This isn't a good sign," she spoke aloud, opening the door to her office.

She deposited her purse on the desk and sat down to check her email, only to find that there was no internet. She then picked up her phone and dialed the extension of the IT department and let it ring. After four rings, her call dropped to the voice mail system and she left a message stating that her internet was out.

She retrieved her phone from her purse, and used it to connect to the company email account where she found that all of her email was intact.

"Whew. Alright. Let's get settled in and check in with the big guy," she said to herself as she made her way back to the coffee station where the coffee was almost finished brewing.

She poured herself a cup as the last few drops fell onto the hot plate. She mixed it with sweetener, making a note to herself that they needed to pickup more. She poured one creamer in and took the cup and made her way to the "big guy's" office.

She knocked on the door, and heard Mr. Tabber's voice from the other side.

"Come in," he said casually.

"Good morning Mr. Tabber, how are you today?" Fiona asked her employer.

"Fiona! Why'd you come here? Didn't you get the message?" asked Mr. Tabber.

"Is this a sit down conversation, or is it safe for me to be standing?" Fiona asked him politely.

"No, its definitely a sit down talk. Could you get me a coffee?" he asked her.

"Only if you promise to be gentle," Fiona replied, making her way back to the coffee station.

She returned a minute and a half later with Mr. Tabber's coffee and placed it on his desk.

She took a seat in one of his guest chairs in front of his desk, taking a sip of her coffee after she was comfortable.

"What did I miss?" asked Fiona with her opening question.

"The company has been absorbed by Werner-Goldstein Holdings. The purchase went through last Friday at 6PM. They're merging us into their company and stripping away the parts they don't need," Mr. Tabber explained to her.

"And what parts might they be?" asked Fiona.

"Ummmm. The redundant roles for which they already have a functioning employee or department," he responded uneasily.

"And are you redundant?" she asked him.

"Me? No. They're giving me a comfy new position and a healthy increase. I didn't do too bad in this one, however, I'm also losing my star employee. My team player. The best one I've had," Mr. Tabber responded.

"You had to let Ricardi go? That's horrible! What's he going to do? Did you even fight for his job?" asked Fiona.

"No. Ricardi's fine, though he had to take a considerable pay cut and likely a bigger workload. No, I was talking about you Fiona. I did everything I could to entice them into keeping you, I even offered to take a cut in my salary, which they outright refused. They don't have room for you or a woman of your abilities and excellent communications skills. They labeled your position as redundant. I'm sorry Fiona," Mr. Tabber said to her sincerely, digging a box of tissue paper out of his desk, and then a bottle of fifty year old aged whiskey.

He slid the tissue paper over to her and she retrieved one, wiping her eyes.

"Drink?" he asked her, giving her the bottle of aged whiskey.

She said nothing, but poured a two finger shot into her coffee and returned the bottle to him.

"Thank you for telling me. Its nice to know that you thought of me that way," she said, wiping her eyes as she spoke.

"I do have some good news for you. They're giving you a generous severance package. Well actually it wasn't them. I arranged for it from the resources of Gomery/Oscarson/Nedrick actually. I had Lana, the head of the accounting department mix it up in the books. It won't make you rich, but it will help you to land on your feet," Mr. Tabber said to her handing her severance package to her.

She accepted it and began reading. She nodded her head at a few points, and then closed the paperwork up and put it on her lap.

"Thank you, Mr. Tabber," Fiona said, knowing that the package would give her six months of support while she looked for another job.

"Here's to working with a great boss," Fiona said to Mr. Tabber, clanking coffee cups with him.

She took a drink from cup, tasting it thoroughly.

"Its good. Very smooth. Even in coffee," she replied to him.

"Oh, and here's my letter of reference. I know that most people do things by email and internet, but I'm an old timer and I like my copy on paper. If you need someone to put in a good word for you, I'm here," Mr. Tabber assured her handing her his letter of recommendation.

"You might want to try some of the places in this building. I mean they know you. You've worked her for a few years. Why not give it a shot?" he asked her.

"I think I'm done with this particular business. I need something new. A new start. Something creative and energizing, not that working with you, Ricardi, Hazel and Lana wasn't that way," Fiona said, having another drink of her coffee and savouring it.

"Well, I hope you find it. Do you need car fare or anything?" asked Mr. Tabber.

"No. Don't be silly, I've got a Transit Pass. Thank you so much for breaking it to me this way, as that could have gone so many different ways," Fiona said, standing and taking her paperwork in one hand and her coffee in the other.

"My new number's on the reference letter. Give me a call if you want to talk," Mr. Tabber said to her.

"Good luck in your new position. I hope you really show them how its done," Fiona said to him.

"I doubt I can without you, but I'll certainly do my best. Take care of yourself now," Mr Tabber let her go, and with that she was out the door.

She quickly retrieved her purse from her office and refilled her coffee on the way out the door to the elevators.

Meanwhile: Where West Meets East

Valerie sat in a chair in front of Heylyn's desk, going over some numbers on her company tablet. Heylyn sat behind her desk, across from Valerie, leaning back and contemplating carefully what her employee and friend had brought to her attention.

"I'm telling you, if we hire for this project, we can expect a whopping forty percent increase in employee productivity not to mention their peace of mind," Valerie explained as she went over the numbers on her spreadsheet.

"But do our current budget limitations allow for it?" asked Heylyn, thinking first about her employees, but realistically about the stability of her company finances.

"Absolutely. If we go ahead with this, we'll see a definite return on investment," Valerie finished her pitch.

"So what's it going to take?" asked Heylyn.

"We hire a plumber. Keep in mind that this will go a great length towards our environmental goals as well," Valerie stated, not very certain about the process involved.

"The plumbing in this building is from the 1930s. I initially had the faucets and toilets replaced when I first gutted the place, but didn't have enough to upgrade the plumbing. Won't gutting and replacing the plumbing system require an army of plumbers and labourers?" confirmed Heylyn.

"...possibly..." Valerie replied, once again in unfamiliar waters.

"Very well. I give you permission to go ahead with the project. I'd suggest that you track down a few specialists in this field to give us an estimate and you can make the call yourself as to which one, but when it comes to picking the esthetic hardware ie the faucets, fixtures and toilets, we'll decide together," Heylyn responded to Valerie's suggestion.

"Thanks Heylyn. That's great. I'll get started on that right away. Are you interest in lunch with Trey and I today?" Valerie stood up from her chair, ready to start on the project.

"I'd love to but I can't. I've got a Doctor's appointment today. My yearly physical, but can I take a raincheck?" Heylyn asked Valerie.

"Alright. Maybe next week.  Do you need someone to take Warai?" asked Valerie.

"Thank you but no. She's gone with Kori. Hoon Kwang is taking them out for the day to see some sites in the city," Heylyn told Valerie.

"Alright, well if you ever need a sitter, Trey and I would love to," Valerie said to Heylyn.

"Oh and Valerie, I'm glad to see that things are working out with you and Trey," Heylyn smiled for her friend and her happiness.

"So am I. See you when you get back this afternoon," Valerie returned her smile and closed the door behind her.


Kori walked along Queen Street, Warai holding her left hand as they strode west towards Spadina Avenue and a particular fast food restaurant.

"Can I get a ice cream sundae?" asked Warai as she walked beside Kori.

"I don't think that would be a particularly good way to start your day. You need something more substantial. Why don't we get a morning salad ?" Kori said excitedly, hoping that would spark her interest.

"But Monique says that when she first wakes up, she sits on the couch with a cup of ice cream, watching the news," Warai responded, as if Monique's habits might justify her morning craving for ice cream.

"Ok. Maybe she does, but she also eats a lot of healthy stuff too, not to mention she exercises daily to keep her figure. She's a model after all and an adult. She knows that there's a price to eating ice cream in the morning that she pays for by taking extra time to exercise it off," Kori explained to Warai.

"Is walking exercise?" asked Warai.

"Yes, it is," Kori looked down to Warai who continued hobbling along at her little girl pace.

"Then we're paying for ice cream now, aren't we?" Warai reasoned rather astutely.

Kori broke out in a short but hearty laughter.

"Look, we'll get ice cream later in the day. I'd like it very much if you and I had a salad together," Kori replied, the remnants of her post laughter smile on her face.

"Ok. What about Mr. Kwang?" asked Warai.

"We're going to get him a salad too, and an orange juice," Kori explained to Warai.

They crossed the street at Spadina Avenue and then north and into the restaurant. There was a short line that moved quickly and before three minutes had passed, Kori was placing their order.

"...and an A - P - P - L - E    S - T - R - U - D - E - L too. And one H - A - S - H    B - R - O - W - N," Kori said to the girl behind the counter, spelling out her last two items.

Kori paid for the order and led Warai out of the restaurant and onto the street where they waited on Queen Street just a short distance from the intersection.

"Here, you can nibble on this while we're waiting for Hoon Kwang," Kori reached into the bag and fished out the hash brown. She broke it in two, giving the other half to Warai.

"Is this healthy?" asked Warai, looking up at Kori.

"The walking we'll do today will pay for it," Kori replied, patting Warai's head.

Shortly after they'd finished their snack, they heard the sound of a skidding car, and a few screams thereafter followed by the sound of collision.

"Come on Warai!" Kori said, grabbing Warai's hand and running as fast as she could with the little girl towards the intersection.

A few cars had stopped, just beyond the intersection. A short distance away from the cars, a man in his twenties lay on the pavement, unmoving.

"Oh my gosh!" Kori exclaimed, releasing Warai's hand so she could fish her phone from her purse while still holding onto their bag of food.

Warai upon seeing the calamity, began walking towards the scene of the accident and the man laying on the road.

"He's not breathing! Does anybody know CPR?!!" a woman around the same age, kneeled before the man on the pavement, unsure of what to do.

Warai towards the cars that had collided, passing between them and over to the man's lifeless body.

"He's hurt very bad," Warai said to woman, who screamed again.

"Somebody do something!" she yelled at the top of her lungs, but nobody moved to help the man though everyone with a phone was busy calling the paramedics.

Warai approached the man, taking his hand in her's.

"Welly says you're going to be better," Warai said to the man.

The woman stared, transfixed by Warai's actions when all of the sudden, the man's arm jumped, as if he was hit with an electric shock. His body spasmed a few times and then he broke out into an extreme cough, sitting up from his former position on the pavement.

"What happened? Sabrina? Why am I on the road?" he asked the woman beside him.

At that moment, Kori ran up to and snatched Warai up into her arms.

"I'm so sorry, I hope that she didn't scare you. She's a wanderer you know," Kori said, carrying Warai and hiding her face protectively.

The man got to his feet and wrapped his arms around the woman.

"Thank goodness you're alright! That little girl! She..." the woman said trying to find Kori and Warai, but they were nowhere to be seen.

The onlookers began to applauded for the couple as a fire truck arrived.

A distance away, Kori stopped running and put Warai down on the sidewalk.

"Why did we run? The man needed help?" asked Warai, somewhat frightened.

"Look! Warai! You can't do that again! Just wander off without me! If anyone saw what you can do, then you might be taken away from Heylyn! From all of us! And they'll treat you like a circus freak! You'd lose all freedom and become a spectacle, but none of those people would treat you as a human being. As a little girl. You'd be more like a thing to them than a person. Don't do that, for your own sake and ours!" Kori said to Warai, kneeling down to speak to her face to face.

"Ok. I won't. I'm sorry I did that," Warai began to cry.

"No, don't be sorry. You did the right thing, but you have to be more careful. If anyone finds out..." Kori was startled as an sizeable electric sedan pulled up beside them and the door popped open.

"Well look at you! I think you've grown a bit in the forty eight hours since I last saw you," Hoon Kwang addressed Warai, whose face was still a little bit glum.

"Alright Warai, lets get you settled into your seat, with your seatbelt on," Kori said to Warai as she stood.

"How are you Kori? Did I miss something?" asked Hoon Kwang.

"I'll explain in the car. We've definitely got to go," Kori said getting Warai setup in the back seat (she'd long outgrown a child seat).

Hoon Kwang went around to the driver's side, spotting the accident at the intersection.

When Kori was done with Warai, she got in the passenger side which Hoon Kwang had lined up with the curb. Hoon Kwang drove west out towards Bathurst Street along the north side of Queen Street and away from the Spadina Avenue intersection.

With seatbelts on, Warai Jeong-Min Tokama, Kori Jonglyu and Hoon Kwang begin their journey

"So, you're back to knocking off cafe's are you? Didn't I tell you that would catch up with you one day?" asked Hoon Kwang with a humourous smile on his face.

"I didn't knock off a cafe. There was an accident back there. It looked like a pedestrian was hit. I went to call the paramedics but in doing so, I had to let go of Warai..." Kori began.

"So she wandered off?" asked Hoon Kwang, now concerned.

"Yes. Right to the injured man..." Kori began only to have Warai interrupt her.

"He wasn't hurt. He was gone bye bye," Warai corrected Kori.

"Warai... well... she used her thing... You know, like she used to fix Braden?" Kori explained to Hoon Kwang.

"You mean like her abilities as the Gem?" confirmed Hoon Kwang.

"Exactly," Kori said, rubbing her face over the incident.

"Did anyone see?" Hoon Kwang asked her.

"A few people. There was a woman. She might have been the man's sister or girlfriend. Possibly a few from the curb too who were watching from the sidelines," Kori explained.

"How are you feeling Warai?" asked Hoon Kwang.

"I'm very hungry," Warai responded, with a pouty face.

"Oh Warai, I'm so sorry. Do you want to wait and we'll eat together?" asked Kori.

"I'll pull over here, I know a peaceful place where we can eat," Hoon Kwang took a turn north on Bathurst, and then wove through a few side streets to pull up in front of a Cultural Centre where he parked the car.

Kori got them sorted out with their food, and they all ate their breakfast together in the car. When they were finished, Kori split the apple strudel with Warai who devoured it happily.

"That should put us off the radar. We'll just have to be on our toes today, but today is all about fun and seeing a few places here in the city," Hoon Kwang looked over his shoulder to Warai and winked.

Warai winked back.

"How about you, Kori. How are you doing?" asked Hoon Kwang.

"I'm a bit stressed but I think I'll be fine. I just don't want anything like this to take Warai away from us. It would break my heart, and certainly Heylyn's too," Kori exhaled as she replied to Hoon Kwang.

"There's an old adage that caravan merchants used to say that goes: when you travel the Silk Road, be sure to keep your gems well hidden," Hoon Kwang told Kori, without condescension but more so as encouragement to do better.

At that point, a Chinese lady in her mid-fifties emerged from the Cultural Centre and walked in the direction of Hoon Kwang's car. She walked over to the passenger side and waved to Kori.

Kori smiled at the lady and powered her passenger window open.

"Can I help you?" asked asked Kori.

"Are you going to be parking here too long?" asked the lady.

"Not really. Maybe another twenty minutes. Why?" asked Kori.

"I'm Mrs. Zhidao from the Chinese Cultural Centre, sometimes our patrons like to park on the street where you are, but twenty minutes should be fine," Mrs. Zhidao told Kori.

Mrs. Zhidao then looked to the back seat of Hoon Kwang's car to see Warai smiling at her happily. 

Warai waved at Mrs. Zhidao and then giggled profusely for a moment, hiding her face. When she revealed herself to look back, she found Mrs. Zhidao smiling at her, waving back.

Mrs. Zhidao reached into her pocket and pulled out a bright yellow lollipop, and handed it to Kori.

"For your little girl," Mrs. Zhidao said to her before turning and making her way back into the cultural centre.

"This looks pretty darn good. I just might have it myself," Kori pretended that she was about to eat it, when Warai responded.

"I'm littler than you!" she exclaimed.

"So you are..." Kori and Hoon both laughed as Kori gave the lollipop to Warai, who happily accepted it.


"They turned down this road. Do we have anyone on this street?" asked Darren in the passenger side of an SUV with darkly tinted windows.

"Darren, hold onto your trousers. Let me check," Bradley pulled the SUV over to the side of the street, checking a database.

"Yep, got it. We have a cam just up ahead. Let me plug it in," Bradly replied, then entering a few keystrokes into his laptop and a moment later, he was connected to the camera's video log.

A video image of Hoon Kwang's electric sedan came onscreen as it turned right at the upcoming residential intersection.

"Got it!" the man put the car into drive again and followed the path Hoon Kwang had taken.

They arrived at another intersection without any clue as to which direction to turn, left or right.

"Left is the Cultural Centre. Right will take us back down to Queen Street," Darren told the Bradley.

"They went to the Cultural Centre," Bradley said, taking the left turn and driving slowly so as not to expose themselves.

They slowly pulled up the street and when they spotted Hoon Kwang's electric sedan, they parked at the side of the road and observed.

"Alright, now we just sit and wait," Bradley told his Darren.

"For what?" asked Darren.

"For them to leave. When they do, we'll follow them and find an opening so our team can grab the little girl," Bradley said, somehow free of conscience but more likely completely lacking thereof.

The Inspired Hunter Of Employment

Fiona sat in front of a computer monitor, her latte and a half eaten muffin beside her keyboard. She posted her resumé to the last of the employment sites she'd found, and then opened a word processing app through which she printed thirty copies of her employment deets. Behind her on the adjacent wall, another row of workstation computers were lined up. A trio of gamers in their late teens early twenties who were part of an online clan were busy racking up points in a classical era martial arts based battle royale, using their stress craftily between classes at University Of Toronto.

Fiona didn't notice their virtual life or death struggle for they were all wearing audio headsets, though the constant tapping of mouse buttons and keys didn't catch her attention either. She was focused on one thing, and that was ensuring that she was employed in another position she found as rewarding as her  most recent company role as a key player.

She stood after she'd pressed the OK button on the Windows print dialog (though at home she used a Mac), grabbed her muffin and latte, and proceeded towards the cash to pay for her printing at the internet cafe.

Fiona, had been a late comer (but very fast learner) when it came to the internet. She applauded the idea that one could post their resumé to a job site and that hundreds of employers (and head hunters) could quickly assess her for a possible interview, however, she was still bound to the idea that she could do more to promote herself in person and with a resume, than she could otherwise. She paid for her stack of resumés and her computer time, and left the cafe, thanking the admin.

"Much luck!" he said to her as she left.

"Thanks, I could use it," she smiled and stepped out into the Yonge Street air.

She checked her watch (she still adored the classic dial watch with three hands, one each for hours, minutes and seconds) and began her journey back the Toronto's business district on Bay Street. Within the course of an hour, she'd visited fifteen places of business (and in one building), presenting herself visually, even getting the attention of management and human resources in six of those places. When she'd finished in that building, she merely made her way to the next, going through the directory and finding the most appropriate place that she might find a rewarding challenge for a woman of her skills.

By the time she'd handed out every single copy of her resumés, she reached the summit of what she could do to change her sudden mid-life interruption. To tell the truth, she'd never found herself absent of something that needed her attention to detail during the daytime hours. And so, for the first time in a long time, she decided that she'd be a little adventurous with her newly found absence. She'd visit one of Toronto's world attractions: The CN Tower.  She'd visit a bank along the way and deposit the money from the cancelling of her contract. The package that Mr. Tapper had expertly and justifiably negotiated for her.

By eleven o'clock, she'd deposited the large sum of money into her account and was on her way to Toronto's half a kilometer high free standing structure near the downtown core via the Toronto Transit.

Warai's First Adventure

Hoon Kwang accelerated his electric sedan, using the Chinese Cultural Centre driveway to turn around and began on his way towards the Harbour Front near York Street and Queen's Quay.

"Do you like lakes Warai?" asked Hoon Kwang of the little girl who was safely buckled into the back seat of his sedan.

She didn't answer him immediately, as she was still eating the leftovers of both their breakfasts. As Jinn Hua had observed, whenever Warai had used her unique abilities, she'd become overwhelmed with hunger shortly thereafter. As if to replenish her energy source through the consumption of calories, however she never seemed to gain a pound. If they'd known her parent's, they would have confirmed that Warai had never accumulated so much as a pound despite sometimes having an almost monstrous appetite. 

This initially had worried her parents, for they'd much rather have had a little girl whose eating habits had added to her weight, rather than a little girl whose metabolism put her dangerously close to the risk of malnutrition and health issues. Somewhere between the two there was a happy medium of not too thin and not too hefty, though Warai had seemed to defy all logic with regard to the consumption of calories, and simply didn't gain an ounce. She never had.

"Are you still hungry?" asked Kori, now suddenly worried that Warai might actually starve as a result of having saved a life.

"No. The salad is mmmm! Can we have more fried morning potatoes?" asked Warai, still relishing the taste and energy worth of the hash browns.

The way she saw it was that she'd paid for it. Just like Kori had said. You exercise and burn the energy that the food gives you. If you walk long enough, you can eat candy and ice cream. If you do something that needs so much energy that you have to eat more and more, then you've earned it. Not because of taste alone, but because her little body told her that she was very low on energy after having resurrected the man. It was like another sense to her.

"I gave her half a hash brown earlier and she loved it," Kori said, concerned that she'd done the wrong thing.

"A half? She's obviously alright if she was able to bring someone back from gone bye bye," Hoon Kwang replied, using Warai's own reference to the man's state.

"Would you like us to stop Warai?" asked Kori, concerned about how to best deal with the situation.

"Are we going to ice cream land?" asked Warai playfully.

"Not exactly... but pretty close," Hoon Kwang replied.

"There's food where we're going?" confirmed Kori.

"Hot dog stands. Ice cream carts. French Fry and Poutine Trucks. English Fish and Chips. Greek Dolmades and Tabouli. Middle Eastern and Mediterranean Falafels with Tahini on Flatbread. Thai Spring Rolls, both Mild and Spicy. Japanese Sushi with Wasabi and the thinly sliced ginger they use as a palette cleanser. Chinese Chop Suey, or General Tao Chicken in a cone. There's food, and there's fun! Especially for little girls and boys," Hoon Kwang promised them.

"No Kimchi?" asked Kori, somewhat shocked to see that the staple of their own cultural contribution to world cuisine wasn't included.

"Its a first, but at the hot dog carts where we're going, they have Kimchi Relish as a topping and imagine that, it was a Polish tourist (with good taste I might add) who suggested it. I know the hot dog cart vendor personally. He's one of my former students," Hoon Kwang said, sounding painfully as if he were receiving kickbacks for the promotion.

"Hmmmm... not bad. Does that sound good Warai?" Kori said as she observed an SUV with tinted windows driving behind them.

What is Tahini?" asked Warai, licking her lips.

"Don't worry, I saw it too," Hoon Kwang assured Kori, and they were quickly drawn into the same wavelength.

"Its a sauce. A topping that you have on top of Falafels, or you can dip them into it," Kori explained to Warai as she checked the rearview mirror on her side again for the vehicle only to find that it was gone.

"Looks like it was a false alarm," Hoon Kwang added, checking all of his mirrors without doing a shoulder check so as not to raise an alarm.

"So it was. I mean after what happened earlier, I'm... a little bit on edge," Kori admitted to Hoon Kwang.

"Don't you worry about a thing. Myung used to have the same issues with her intuition. You know, being that sensitive is a good thing, you just have to fine tune your response to frightening things in such a way that they don't cause you to act without thought. You do that, and you'll play yourself into every trap," Hoon Kwang checked his exterior cameras via the dashboard monitor, and then did a once over of his rearview mirrors again just to be sure.

They continued onwards down to the Toronto Harbourfront and to Ontario Place.


Kori smiled as they walked through the parking lot towards the front gates of one of the largest attractions on the Toronto Harbourfront.

"Good choice. Gosh, I can't remember the last time I was here," Kori gave her approval.

"Well, you're here now, and I'd be willing to bet that this place has changed some since you were last here," Hoon Kwang replied.

Hoon Kwang walked beside her, carrying Warai in his arms on account of the fact that Kori was worried that the little girl had so utterly depleted herself that she might be at risk if she spent more energy walking on her own little legs.

They passed through the gates and their journey onto the park grounds truly began once, they'd left the parking lot and were on the Ontario Place path, which wound through a large grassy park area, naturally fertile with trees, and a variety of venues of interest.

"What's that big ball?" asked Warai, as she looked around from her place within Hoon Kwang's arms.

"That's called the Cinesphere," Hoon Kwang answered Warai.

"What's a Cinesphere?" she asked again, confirming that children were often an unending source of curiosity and questions.

"Its a very big move theatre. In fact, until recently, it was the only place in Toronto that you could view IMAX movies. When I was a young teenager, shortly after we'd arrived in Canada, it was one of the places my parents loved to take us for movies. I've seen many of my favourite action movies there," Hoon Kwang told her, he being a big fan of action movies himself.

"Why is it a bumpy ball?" asked Warai.

"Ha! Close Warai. That's actually called a Bucky Ball," Kori told her, smiling over the fact that she'd almost found the exact slang name for the geometric shape of the Cinesphere.

"What's a Bucky ball?" Warai replied, giggling while trying to properly pronounce the phrase.

"Its called Bucky, because its a geodesic structure first engineered by Buckminster Fuller, although the geometry comes from Plato. Its a part of the extended set of the Platonic solids," Kori replied, impressing herself that she actually remembered these facts.

"That's impressive. How did you learn of this?" asked Hoon Kwang, while Warai seemed puzzled by Kori's answer.

"My dad was a structural engineer. Actually I was in a meeting with Heylyn the other day and I found out that her father and my father actually worked together several times. Heylyn's father was an architect. So I've been exposed to this kind of stuff my whole life," Kori replied.

"And why didn't you become a structural engineer?" asked Hoon Kwang, seeing as he himself had followed in the footsteps of his father, who was a highly regyared Sebomnim of Tae Kwon Do as he himself had become.

"I don't know. I guess Cyndi Lauper says it best. Girls just wanna have fun," she replied, causing Warai to burst out giggling once again.

"Are you?" asked Hoon Kwang of her.

"Am I what?" responded Kori.

"Fun. Are you having fun?" repeated Hoon Kwang.

Kori looked around, but not at anything in particular. More so she was looking within, for nobody had ever asked her that and hence, she'd never honestly considered it or the quality of her life.

"I don't know. I think I'm not having it, because I'm living it. I'm living fun. I try to make fun wherever I go. Monique and I are certainly both known for that back at West Meet East," Kori smiled as she spoke.

"I'd bet your mother and father were much the same, were they?" asked Hoon Kwang as they walked along the winding path.

"My father was a very serious man most of the time, but occasionally something would happen that would tickle his funny bone, and he'd laugh about it. Often for days. Usually the cause was something my mother had said, and often in jest. Of the two of them, I'd be pretty hard pressed to say who was the more clever of the them. My father was a pretty smart cookie, but my mother certainly kept a man as clever as he was on his toes," Kori replied, amused as she recalled from her many memories.

"How did they meet if you don't mind me asking?" Hoon Kwang asked Kori, as both he and Warai listened for answer.

"Well, my grandfather was an old war vet. Fought in the battle of Seoul, along side a Canadian Regiment. I think they were called the Black Watch," Kori began telling them the story.

"The Black Watch. I know of this regiment. They're some tough cookies. They can survive in the wild for months off of what you'd find on the underside of a log from what I've heard," Hoon Kwang responded.

"Yeah, that pretty much describes Richard. A true gentleman at heart, and certainly a survivor," Kori replied.

"Many of them were. I know I'm certainly here to hear you now from their effort. Who was Richard by the way?" Hoon Kwang admitted.

"I'll get to Richard in a moment. So getting back to how my parents met, the Black Watch and my grandfather's regiment helped cease the advance of North Korean supply line units and reinforcements during the North's occupation of Seoul. When the North retreated and regrouped (as my grandfather often told us the story), they insured that their attempt to retake the city would fail. My grandfather called it a: denial of access operation. Of course when he told the story, he'd use the language of the special operations unit of which he was a part," Kori told him.

"Special operations? He must have been formidable man," Hoon Kwang replied, while Warai sat in his armed looking to Kori obviously very amused to hear of her family.

"Yes, he was, but ever so humble. Perhaps even perturbed of the sacrifice he'd made to fight his own brothers of the North. So as fate would have it, my grandfather befriended a man from the Black Watch, and another Korean man whose family line was of the city of Busan. The three of them, Richard, the Warrant Officer from the Canadian Black Watch, my grandfather, Jun, who was part of the KDF (Korean Defense Force), much like Ji-Won, the man whose family came from Busan, each had young children. My grandfather had my father, and Ji-Won, his friend from Busan had a daughter, about the same age. So my grandfather often told me they'd joked about fixing their children up with each other when they were of age," Kori paused as Warai watched her transfixed, a tiny lollipop smile on her face.

"Long after the war, and years into my grandfather's retirement, the daughter of Ji-Won came looking to find my grandfather with the help of Richard (of the Canadian Black Watch) to carry gifts to him from the entire family Ji-Won. When my mother met my father at that time, it was said that it was a match made in the stars. He was clever, and a student of the University Of Seoul Engineering program, but she was even more clever than he, and that had fascinated him to no end. From that point, they began courting each other in accordance with Korean tradition. Richard returned to Canada, but before he did, he offered my father a job at through his Civil Engineering firm. My father accepted, and six months later he and my mother were married at a traditional family wedding in Busan. They wished their family well, and left Korea to take the employment opportunity afforded by Richard. When they were successfully established three years later, they had me at the Toronto General Hospital," Kori smiled,  having recalling many years of her family history in one conversation.

"Do you have a mommy and daddy too?" asked Warai of Hoon Kwang.

"I do. But they got me from the back of a giant turtle, who brings babies to the shores of Korea," Hoon Kwang told her, using myth to describe elements of the world for which she might have been too young to understand.

Warai found it very amusing and suddenly burst out laughing at the thought. At that moment is exactly when she saw the children's amusement park.

"Can we go there?" she asked, craning her head to look at Hoon Kwang innocently.

"I take that was part of your plan?" asked Kori, already very impressed by the man.

"Indeed that was. So tell me, is that where you want to go?" asked Hoon Kwang.

"Let's," Kori  replied with a comfortable smile on her face.

Despite the fact that he was an older man, she was really starting to like Hoon Kwang. Especially in their secretly implied game of house. They were a happy, if not illusional little family.


"There they are," Bradley said, spotting Hoon Kwang with the little girl in his arms from the side of his visual perspective.

"Why don't we try to grab them here?" asked Darren.

"For one, there's too many people here today. Secondly, in my experience in order to conduct an abduction, you need confined spaces. A corner to back them into. There's nothing but open space and a few amusements here," Bradley replied, relying upon his experience working as an Proactive Security Specialist for Habus Macill.

"So then way are we even following them?" asked Darren, now completely lost with regard to their purpose.

"Because, if they meet with someone and dispense information, we gain valuable intelligence. We gain the visual identity of their contact, not to mention the fact that communication did indeed take place. Habus is a nut for that kind of stuff. He says its imperative for strategic management," Bradley explained to Darren, ensuring that neither of them ever look directly at their targets.


Back in the parking lot, Darrell, a meter maid (as Constables tasked to traffic were often called) went one by one to each car, checking the plates and registration in search of vehicular offenses.

He checked the plates of a particular red electric sedan, and found that the driver was registered under their monitoring program as a lethal weapon, having an eighth degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do, and being a sixth degree master of Korean weapons. Darrell checked further into the file and found that the driver, one Hoon Kwang in fact had no criminal record or other offences, and had even been an approved partner of the Ontario Police College self defense training program.

"He's clear. For sure," Darrell remarked out loud to himself, clicking the check box next to Hoon Kwang's record check on his Police tablet.

A few cars on, he came to an SUV with tinted windows. He quickly ran up the plates and found that the insurance registration indicated on the plates was false. He double checked it just to be sure, still finding the same thing.

When he went to pull up the driver's registration, he was met with several flags indicating that the person was currently under surveillance for previous insurgent activities. When Darrell went to check on this aspect of the file, he was denied access.

"Hmmm. Must be the real spooks watching him," Darrell responded verbally to his findings.

At that moment, something happened to his tablet that he couldn't explain. For one, the screen went suddenly dark. A half second later, a perfectly pristine image appeared: the face of a dragon scowling at him. Then the tablet reset itself, and a few seconds later, it had booted directly into the file of the owner of the vehicle.

"Bradley Burch? He's a former licensed Private Investigator," Darrell spoke aloud once again, this time much more quietly. 

When Darrell took a good look at the man's face, he suddenly experience deja-vu, recalling that he'd seen the man before. 

The whole scene played back to him in his mind, much like a movie. He had just pulled into the parking lot in his Police Sedan. When he'd gotten out, he'd observed a family (possibly Chinese or Japanese?) heading into the park with their child. A pair of men had exited the SUV, keeping an intense focus on the (Chinese of Japanese?) family, as if they were tracking them.

"That was Hoon Kwang then," Darrell contemplated, realizing that he'd seen them when he first arrived.

"So why does this Bradley guy have such an interest in Hoon Kwang's family?" he asked himself.

He looked back to Bradley's record and one particular line jumped out at him: KIDNAPPING.

He went to grab his radio and call his hunch in, but then something in him hesitated. His credibility was already a rare commodity. One that he'd rather preserve. But they were a family and there was the possibility that they were being pursued by the most vile of predators. He's already been demoted as low as the Police force could, for Darrell was a true investigator at heart, but his hunches had often put him in conflict with interdepartmental politics. As a result, he'd been demoted again and again until now he was at the lowest such position he could have absent of layoff. There was much at stake with this current dilemma of choices which he faced. In the end however, he chose to err on the side of the potential victims, rather than for himself and his safety.

He quickly unclipped his firearm and checked that he'd loaded it that morning, as he often had kept it empty, earning him the nickname: the unloaded gun.

"What's possibly at risk versus the cost of inaction," he said to himself, carefully weighing the two.

In the end, he chose to err on the side of protection, and began pursuing his lead into Ontario Place.

West Meets East Meets News

Heylyn sat at her digital drafting table, her magnetic charcoal pencil in hand (she preferred to work her designs both digitally and on paper at the same time). She continued her earlier stroke of the curvaceous female body for which she was designing, etching the curve into its very familiar shape. Much like that of a an exquisitely crafted cello. Curves beyond feature and form: beyond description even. She continued her design in pursuit of that ever perfect curve for the dress that was currently in her mind and seeking its manifestation onto her drafting paper.

There was suddenly a knock at her door.

"Enter or flee," Heylyn responded firmly.

The door opened and Ebtissam peeked in.

"Heylyn? We were watching the news back in the sewing department and there's something you should definitely see..." she told Heylyn, waiting for her response.

"Thanks Ebtissam, but I already sent out a birthday card and gift for that hunk of a man Jason Mamoa. If I had a fetish for Neanderthals, or if he ever opted for hair removal surgery, I'd marry him in a second," Heylyn responded with a hint of sarcasm in her voice as she continued crafting her design.

Ebtissam was suddenly caught off guard, quietly laughing to herself at Heylyn's sudden improvised response.

"No. The news is about a little girl..." Ebtissam cautiously told Heylyn, who upon hearing her words immediately stopped and turned on the television in her design studio with her remote.

" the scene, stating that the pedestrian victim, Milan Emanuel was 'resuscitated by an angel' as the victim stated in his own words. CityTV reporting," the correspondent reported.

"I don't know... that's a far cry from my little angel, but I bet that if she could save people she certainly would if there was an ice cream cone or candy bar in it for her. Thanks Ebtissam," Heylyn turned in her stool to face her senior seamstress.

"Also, we've completed the parts from the the pattern for the autumn line-up, in case you'd like to check them," Ebtissam added.

"Thanks Ebtissam. Keep them back in the sewing department and I'll check them tomorrow afternoon. Tell your team thanks. By the way, your department is in first place for the monthly environment reward. Keep up the good work," Heylyn told Ebtissam.

"Good. I'll let my team know. Thank you," Ebtissam closed the door to Heylyn's design office and returned to the sewing department.

Heylyn changed the channel several times until she happened upon a CBC report.

"...itnesses are still baffled by the appearance of an angel, in the form of a little girl who allegedly healed a man from the brink of death..." Heylyn watched, but once again, there was no direct footage of either Warai nor Kori.

Yet still, she felt uneasy for some reason.

"This is definitely a test of my nerves..." she began.

"...and trust likely..." she heard the voice of a man behind her.

She turned to see Braden, who'd come into her design room without knocking, meaning that he felt that it was an emergency.

"That bad possibly?" she turned to face him.

"I'm afraid so. You see, she simply doesn't see things the way we do. There's no judgement in her. She sees it on a scale of innocence from her own perspective. If she sees a life diminishing or dying, she's compelled to save it. Its that simple," Braden informed her.

"So you think that this... angel... is Warai?" confirmed Heylyn, who'd turned completely around on her design chair to face the Dragon Man.

"I don't think. I know," he replied to her, his receiving paperwork still in his hands.

Heylyn turned and retrieved her phone from her purse, which was hanging on the end of an extrusion from her drafting table. She messaged two of her employees, and a few moments later they were standing at the door through which Braden had come unannounced.

"We just got back... are you alright?" asked Valerie of Heylyn.

"Why wouldn't I be?" asked Heylyn.

"Trey and I caught the news at the restaurant. I was stressed, thinking that it might be Warai..." Valerie stepped forward.

"And me? I'm here because I generally like bosses who send me smiley faced emojis, and I haven't received my quota of them from you today!" Monique replied to Heylyn.

"I summoned you here about the fact that Warai might have revealed herself again... By the way, where's Aikiko?" Heylyn asked.

"She's finishing up with a photoshoot, but she'll be here soon. Especially after she checks her phone. You really should tone down your SOS messages a bit, Boss," Monique joked with Heylyn.

"Monique, emergencies are rarely at the convenience of the receivers of an SOS," Heylyn replied.

"Good point, Boss," Monique replied, making her way over towards Heylyn, tapping Braden's tush as she passed him.

"This is serious," Valerie responded, suddenly understanding Heylyn's coded behaviour.

"Why do you think I'm here?... to discuss my receiving logs?" Braden responded to Valerie and Monique.

Valerie turned to Monique and nodded.

"That sounds about right," she responded.

"You know that I used to be a part of a special operations unit, rescuing civilians like you from dangerous insurgent groups right?" Braden responded defensively, feeling somewhat belittled by Valerie's response.

"Are you three finished? Put the egos aside. There's a little girl at stake here!" Heylyn told them impatiently.

"Something happened to Warai?" confirmed Monique defensively.

Heylyn turned on the television and tuned it to CityTV's 24 hour news service.

"...the headlines are calling it a miracle, when earlier today, a man was brought back from the brink of death by an angel..." report repeated again as they watched.

"Warai? A little angel? That sounds about right," Monique responded to the report.

"I thought she was out with Kori and Hoon?" confirmed Valerie.

"She is, but obviously something must have happened," Heylyn informed them.

"Have you seen any pictures of her on any of the news reports?" asked Valerie.

"No. It doesn't look like they got a positive identification on her, but everything else is pretty consistent with the way she is," Heylyn told them.

"Then what's the emergency. Look, Heylyn, there isn't a day that goes by where I haven't seen a news story about the Butterfly Dragon or the Eclipse, or Night Style for that matter. But every time that happens, there's never a full face picture of you, Monique or Alicia accompanying the story. Every time it happens though, I ask myself, is this the time that they're going to be found out? The time that their little secret is going to go flying off into the night?" Valerie explained to Heylyn.

"That's very true. I think that's the point here," Braden agreed.

"What's true?" Heylyn asked them.

"Warai's very being is intertwined with your karma. Don't you get it? This is the worry you bring to everyone else in your life, and now that worry is coming to you in a different form and from someone that you, that we all care for greatly," Braden responded.

"This isn't my fault. I do everything for that little girl! Everything!" Heylyn responded defensively.

"This isn't a case of fault, Heylyn. This is a case of the fact that someday, probably much sooner than you'd like it to be as Warai's mother, that you're going to have to live with her abilities and how she chooses to use them, much like everyone else has to live with the risks that you take every time we see you on the evening news!" Braden asserted.

Heylyn looked intensely to Braden for a moment, though he held his gaze upon hers, unmoving. Heylyn eventually turned away, facing the difficult reality that what Braden, what Valerie, Monique and her friends that knew her secret have always been saying, was true.

Heylyn looked at a picture on the wall. It was a photograph of her as a young girl, standing in front of her parents who'd emigrated from China when she was a little girl somewhat younger than Warai. They all stood happily before their first family home in Canada. She thought to her parents, and all the worries they'd likely endured during her adventurous youth. They too lived with the fact that they had an inspired little girl, whose will for curiosity, and sometimes, adventurous fun, had caused much intense worry in their hearts. They both knew of her destiny, that their daughter Ai Yuanlin Ying would eventually become the Butterfly Dragon, and yet they went on living their lives, trusting their little daughter and her often precarious whims.

"Heylyn, you just need to trust in that little girl, and her future. But most of all, you need to be ready for when she needs you. When she finds herself in a situation where she herself can't find a way out. The same way your parents did. For you," Braden continued.

"You know, the most difficult thing about being the boss? Its the fact that you're expected to be right all the time. And yet, its the times that I've been wrong that have often been the most valuable learning experiences of all," Heylyn returned her gaze to her friends.

"Then I guess that you truly have never been wrong, but more so, just learned," Aikiko said as she stepped out from behind the door to Heylyn's design studio.

"How long have you been there?" asked Heylyn of her Butterfly sister.

"Long enough to know the difference," Aikiko assured her sister in spirit.

"I think that what Braden was saying was that you need to get used to this, and perhaps the earlier, the better. But when there's a real risk to her well being, that we'll all be there for her. For you," Monique assured her best friend.

"That's for sure. I may have hung up my hero tights, but if that day ever comes, I'll be there for you," Valerie agreed.

"More so than ever, so will I," Braden agreed, nodding affirmatively to Heylyn.

"I as well, even when I'm wearing an outfit such as this," Aikiko added, most everyone else in the design office turning to look at her.

Aikiko was wearing a rather revealing pink one piece body stocking that Heylyn had designed, with reddish fractal embellishments covering the private extremes of her body, but not much else.

Braden looked to Aikiko innocently, and then over to Heylyn, perhaps imagining her in the same garment.

Both Heylyn and Braden blushed profusely, but everyone remained silent.

"Who's doing your shoot?" asked Monique.

"Trey. He's shooting us with a telephoto lens. Says he wants a really pronounced depth of field. We've got another new model in today. He says his name's Jack. He's a boxer, though in my honest opinion, he's a bit slow. He's a bit of a jerk too," Aikiko told them.

"Thanks for showing up. I'll do my best as an inexperienced mother to deal with these worries, but its good to know that if I need you, that you, all of you are there for her,"  Heylyn told her friends.

The news report continued quietly in the background in split-screen as CityTV and CBC each ran stories about the history of angels, and how they often appeared in the form of children during times of need.

Bouncing Back

Warai, upon their having arrived at the site of a pair of food vendor carts, had eaten not only a Chicken Souvlaki kebob buy herself, but an entire waffle ice cream sandwich. Her monstrous metabolism now replenished, she began to focus on the park and amusements around them.

"Can we go there?" Warai pointed to an attraction which was basically a small children's park, with swings and several round-abouts.

Hoon Kwang, who was just finishing his Kimchi topped hot dog looked to Kori inquisitively.

"Alright honey. We'll go there next, but we have to finish eating," Kori responded as she chewed the last piece of her Souvlaki.

"That was tasty. Shall we go then?" asked Hoon Kwang.

"I'm ready if you are," Kori responded.

Kori held out her hand to Warai, who hobbled over and accepted it. The three of them then began the short journey along the path to the playgrounds.


"Look. They're going to the park. This might be our chance," Darren suggested.

"No. Too crowded here, not to mention we're too far from the SUV. We're just keeping an eye on our target," Bradley responded, looking towards but never directly at their target.

They both got up from the bench they occupied and began following their target over to the playground.

"What are we going to do there? We're two grown men. What would we be doing at a playground?" asked Darren.

"We aren't going there, we'll just walk by it and take a seat on a bench beyond the playground. Keep an eye from there," Bradley assured Darren.

"It won't take Mentis long to piece things together and find her too. We've got to get her before he does, or Habus is as good as done," Bradley told Darren as they passed the park where Hoon was pushing Warai on one of the swings.


Kori pulled her phone and took a few pictures with the built-in camera. Something she could give to Heylyn, while both Hoon and Warai smiled.

" What kind of a surrogate mommy would I be if I didn't get a few photos of the fun out here?" Kori asked herself aloud.

More so rhetorically than figuratively.

Warai was laughing and screaming too much to have heard Kori as she'd reached the maximum height that Hoon Kwang was willing to push the little girl.

He caught her swing and slowly returned her to the resting point, where the swing merely dangled in the center. Warai got off the swings, jumping up a few times and then began running directly over to the round-about.

"She must have a stainless steel stomach if she can take all of this right after eating what she did," Hoon Kwang observed.

"I don't know how she does it, or where she puts it all. Not to mention I don't think that I've ever seen her sick, though Heylyn told me that Warai has had a few short bouts with a cold," Kori pointed out.

"At this rate, she's going to burn the both of us out before the end of the lunch hour," Hoon Kwang said as Darrell walked by on the path, a few contacts coming in through his radio pack.

He continued walking as if he hadn't seen Kori, Warai and Hoon Kwang, also ignoring Bradley and Darren who'd taken up a vigil from a nearby park bench.

Darrell continued walking until he was out of sight. At that point he circled back behind the public washrooms and made his way to another bench, which was behind the view of Bradley and Darren. From there he kept his vigil from a safe distance.

Warai stood on the round-about, waiting for Hoon Kwang, her ride pusher to arrive. She jumped up and down excitedly as he got there, standing by the side of the round-about.

"Hang on tight, and stay close to the center," he told her.

She grabbed a firm hold of the rails near where they converged at the center, and nodded to him.

"Ok!" she responded.

Hoon Kwang then grabbed a firm hold of the exterior rails and began spinning the ride with all of the force that he could muster. The round-about began to spin faster and faster, and just when it appeared that it might slow down, he'd grab the rails and give it another push. Warai once again began screaming and laughing (perhaps both simultaneously?). Once Hoon Kwang had the ride spinning fast enough, he simply stood back and let the ride slow down.

When it was slow enough that Warai could simply step off, she did just that. She then began running in a straight line, or so she attempted, but it turned into a large curve leaning leftwards, the same direction in which she fell down on the grass a moment later, still dizzy from the ride.

"I guess we're just going to have to get you a new walking license," Hoon Kwang joked, picking the girl up from the ground and into his arms.

"Where to now?" asked Kori, eager to move on to the next attraction.

"Warai will have many years to see Ontario Place again, and probably some concerts here and even some IMAX movies when she's a young adult. We still have another two attractions to see, so why don't we try the next one, and then go for the finalé?" he asked them.

"That sounds like fun. Besides, chances are Warai will be hungry again by the time we get to the next one. Does that sound good Warai?" Kori asked the little girl in Hoon Kwang's arms.

"I'm dizzy..." she began laughing.

"I'll take that as a yes," Kori smiled back.

"Can we have more ice cream?" Warai asked again.

"No, but we can have something a bit more substantial. Something with some vitamins too," Kori told Warai.

"They have freshly squeezed juice where we're going. Very healthy," Hoon Kwang told Kori.

"Then let's go," Kori said and with that the three of them began their trip back to the parking lot.


"What? That's it? They're going somewhere else now?" asked Darren.

"Look like it. Let's keep on their tail," Bradley stood and followed them from a distance as they left.

Behind them, Darrell had gotten up from his bench and had turned his radio body pack down. He kept his distance but maintained eye contact at all times, rarely using it.

"Now lets see where this little wagon train is going to take us..." he said to himself, checking the GPS records on his phone to ensure that he had a transpositional audit trail.

One by one the three groups left the Ontario Place parking area, each in their respective vehicles. Hoon Kwang in his electric sedan. Bradley and Darren in the darkly tinted SUV and Darrell in his Police issue meter man electric car.

The Estimate And The Adventurous

A clean cut man in a pair of comfortable work slacks and a modest button down shirt walked alongside Valerie as she led him to the utility room. In his hands were a tablet computer to which was clipped a small notepad complete with carbon copies. A pen sat perched in his ear. Valerie addressed the man as they walked.

"Now most of this is going to have to be done in a way that doesn't interfere with our day to day operations. How you're going to achieve that is beyond my guess, but that's why you're here..." Valerie asserted their conditions for the job.

"Let's get a look at the original hardware and I'll be able to give you a rough time table," he responded to her concerns.

"Thanks... Jamie is it?" she confirmed with him.

"Jason. I'm Jason," he corrected her, blushing slightly as he did so.

"I'm sorry Jason, but its been a hectic day so far," Valerie apologized to him.

"Not to worry. Ahhhh, so we're talking some old hardware here. This is definitely from the 1920s. You said that your employer had this building renovated herself? I'm surprised she didn't just have the plumbing done at the same time," Jason examined the utility room, sizing what it would take to upgrade their plumbing system.

"For her it was a budgetary consideration back then. Now, she's got a bit more credit, and can take on renovations like this one. Its a big one, isn't it?" Valerie asked him.

"Yes... but not as big as you're thinking. Most of the plumbing throughout the building can remain. You've got another hundred years with the existing pipes. However, the water heater and a number of other systems that connect to the city service, they definitely need to be upgraded and inspected to pass  code. What we can do for you is conduct the entire job over the course of three weekends, essentially in three phases. We'll do all the big stuff in the utility room over the course of two weekends, and the final touches with a complete replacement of all fixtures over the last weekend. You'll have zero time down, and likely no interruptions in your water service during the week. On the weekends though, its going to be a mess," Jason assured Valerie, who appreciated his candor.

Valerie's phone suddenly rang, startling her momentarily.

"Just a minute, Jason," Valerie said, turning away from him.

"Have you a moment milady?" Trey asked her seductively.

"You mean...? Could I take a raincheck? I'm just getting an estimate for..." Valerie tried to stop him, but he wouldn't have it.

"...we could sneak into the recreation room. Put that out of service sign on the door. Lock it from the inside... There's that monstrously soft sofa or the pool table..." Trey spoke seductively to her, drawing a laughter from her that she did everything she could to keep muffled.

"Look, hold that thought and call me later," she gave her phone an audibly loud kiss, which Trey returned on his end before hanging up.

"Sorry about that. A bit of a pressing matter," Valerie said to Jason, fanning herself with her hand.

"No worries. So this job is going to take a sizeable crew in order to get done in a timely manner, but if we did it the other way, you'd still get about the same value but it would take much..." Jason stopped as Valerie's phone wrang again.

She quickly answered it without checking the number.

"Look, honey, I'm in the middle of getting an estimate. When I'm done, we can try out your plan. Besides, the pool table idea sounds kind of fun..." Valerie said in a quietly seductive voice.

"I'm sorry, but is this West Meet East International?" asked a female voice on the other end.

"Yes it is. I apologize... I was just watching a soap opera and must have repeated the actress' lines aloud... How can I help you?" asked Valerie, now embarrassed.

"You're Valerie? Valerie Aspen?" asked the woman.

"Yes, speaking," Valerie replied.

"My name is Fiona. I emailed a resumé to you a couple of hours ago and I was wondering if you had time to examine it?" asked Fiona of Valerie.

"I have to admit that its been a busy morning, but now that you've brought it to my attention Felicity..." Valerie began.

"Fiona. I'm Fiona," Fiona made sure that her name was clear.

"Fiona. I'll take a look at it first thing upon my return to my office, but thanks for checking with me. Sometimes its that extra effort that gets an employers attention, isn't it?" asked Valerie.

"I hope so, without being too aggressive it certainly might be. Hopefully in this case," Fiona smiled, crossing her fingers on the other end of the phone.

"Perhaps we'll talk again soon Fiona. Thanks for your interest in joining our team," Valerie replied and then hung up.

When Valerie had finished her phone call, Jason handed her a copy of his estimate.

"Look, you're a very busy lady. Here's our estimate, with our timetable. We can be ready to do the job in as little as three weeks from now, and it will take three weekends, meaning you'd be back to normal with a modern plumbing system in about a month and a half. If you have any questions, give me call," Jason shook Valerie's hand.

"Thanks Jason. Let me walk you out," Valerie walked beside Jason as they cut through the showroom and out towards the front reception.


Toronto Music Garden King's Landing
Photograph by Taxiarchos228 Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported.

Meanwhile, Fiona had just returned her phone to her purse and was now enjoying a walk along the Queen's Quay, along Toronto's scenic Harbour Front.

"Maybe this was all a good thing..." she said to herself, somehow feeling herself relieved of an enormous pressure.

More like she'd been freed from some hidden cage, to once again pursue the great adventure of this thing we call life. Sure, she had very realistic concerns with which she'd likely have to contend, but in the end she was free to start again.

It was upon that very thought that her phone rang again. She quickly retrieved it from her purse without checking the number.

"Hello?" she answered.

"Hi honey. How's your day going?" her common-law spouse greeted her.

"Lloyd? Its going. How about yours?" she asked him supportively.

"Well, we recently had another busy spurt. Most likely as a result of the car show? So it looks like I'm going to be working late again tonight. At least until ten. But you can come down to the shop and hang out with me if you'd like? We could even have dinner here together, if you don't mind the smell of the spray booth," Lloyd invited her to High Performance Arts, their paint and airbrush shop catering to the automotive industry.

"Thanks, but I'll wait until you get home. Don't eat too much. I'll have something ready for us both, alright?" she assured him.

"Alright. Just an energy drink to keep me on my toes but nothing else. Big kiss," Lloyd kissed her with his words.

"Big kiss to you too," Fiona said, returning his kiss similarly, and they hung up.

Fiona stopped long enough to put her phone back into her purse, when a little girl bumped into leg.

"I'm sorry," Warai said to Fiona, who looked back to her with a generous smile.

"No harm done," Fiona said to Warai, who hobbled along admiring the scenery around them. 

Fiona then looked down, to see that Warai had dropped a flower she'd been carrying with her. Fiona picked up the flower delicately with her fingers and caught up with Warai.

"Here. You don't want to lose this. It might help you some day," Fiona said, clipping it to Warai's hair.

"Thank you. She's a little clumsy sometimes. I'm sure she appreciates it, though. Thank you," Kori said to Fiona.

"Its a lovely day, isn't it? Enjoy!" Fiona smiled, waving to Warai as she left them to their travels.

The Height Of Heights

"Well that was a nice little walk. I've never taken that route through the Harbour Front before," Kori said to Hoon Kwang, who nodded.

"Not too many people take that route. Miss out on the gardens and some of the theatre along with way. Its great, especially during July and August," Hoon Kwang agreed with Kori.

"Are we going there?" asked Warai, pointing to the CN Tower.

"That's where we're headed," Kori nodded to Warai.

"But can't we fall?" Warai looked up at the great tower, now very concerned for them.

 "No. Its very safe there. There's nothing to worry to about. I've been up there many times, and yet here I am..." Hoon Kwang assured Warai.

"I'm scared!" Warai said to Kori, wrapping herself around her leg.

"Don't worry Warai, we'll protect you," Kori assured the little girl, who stuck close to Kori and Hoon from that time onward.

Some distance ahead of them, Fiona had already paid her admission to the tower, and was now waiting for the elevator that would take her up to the revolving restaurant.

Not far behind Warai, Kori and Hoon Kwang were Bradley and Darren. They continued in pursuit of their prey when a text message came in through Bradley's phone. He retrieved the device from his pocket and examined the message:

Bradley Jerrick and Darren Matfern. I have received news of your current pursuits, and am willing to extend the offer you received from another party named Habus Macill. His offer for the capture of that little girl is hardly worth your time and effort. I am willing to offer you twice the amount of five million that he's paying you. If you refuse, I can assure you that your days here are numbered. Yours truly, Mentis.

"There's been a change in plans, Darren. We've got twice the budget. Let's call in the rest of the team to make the grab in the Tower. If we do, we 're setup for life. You don't want to know the cost of failure though," Bradley informed Darren.

Darren retrieved his phone and dialed a number he'd kept only for emergencies. When someone on the other end answered, Darren spoke.

"Get your men ready and come to the CN Tower, and the restaurant level. Our target is there. She's with an old bald guy, and a young woman in her mid to late twenties. That's the little girl's only protection, but bring some firepower just to be sure," Darren ordered his team and then hung up.

"Did you get them?" confirmed Bradley.

"Did I? These guys are the real deal. They're ones that the big boys hire to take care of things that nobody wants to take care of. They're trained assassins and armed to the teeth. Look, we're going to give the term High Noon an entirely new meaning," Darren assured Bradley.


Warai, Kori and Hoon walked along the entry corridor on their way to the elevator that would take them up to the 360 Restaurant, the highest place to dine in Toronto short of an aircraft.

"How are things with the Dojang?" asked Kori of Hoon. 

"Good. Managing to keep a steady enrollment of students, but with the rampant inflation, its not making things any easier for them. Thank goodness the mortgage is paid on the property and that property taxes are fixed, otherwise I'd be struggling. I've got a few students who are month or two behind on their dues, but thankfully I can carry that to a limited degree. Fortunately I've haven't a lien against the property, not to mention I've been keeping a little nest egg, so dinner's on me," Hoon assured Kori.

"Between my rent and the insurance payments for my car, its a wonder I haven't gone bankrupt yet. Don't get me wrong, Heylyn pays me well, but I think this economy is simply a little too trying for us all. Between that and the cost of living, I have to say that I'll be a happy camper when the interest rates settle down," Kori spoke as any adult would with regard to her financial concerns.

"For that to happen, we're going to be waiting for the real estate market to bottom out, and the prime lending rate to drop a few notches. Until then, its likely going to be a bit of a rough ride," Hoon told her, he himself interested in the real estate market.

"I guess we'd better do our best to enjoy it. Right Warai?" Kori asked the little girl.

"Right!" Warai responded affirmatively, completely oblivious with regard to economiics and inflation.

"No matter what people say, ignorance is still bliss," Hoon Kwang responded, amused by Warai's care-free nature.

"...and exactly one bliss away from foreclosure..." Kori somehow managed to scrape up enough sarcasm for a joke.

"Let's hope not! Let's hope not," Hoon Kwang was able to laugh along with her.

There was a short line outside of the elevator, which moved quickly as the elevator arrived.

"Can I stand by the window?" asked Warai, whose earlier fear of heights had become replaced by curiosity.

"I don't see why not. I'll be right behind you if you need me," Kori assured Warai as they stepped onto the elevator.

Hoon Kwang stood behind them both.

A man stood in the way of the window as the elevator remained stationary. Warai was prevented from seeing anything by the man.

"Mister? Can I see out the window?" Warai asked the man.

"You want to take a look out there? You're a brave little girl. Be my guest," Darrell said to her, stepping aside for her as the elevator began to ascend.

The elevator began to accelerate, and before long they were higher up than even the tallest buildings around them. Warai looked out into the distance and then felt dizzy. She immediately turned around and wrapped herself around Kori's waist, hanging on for dear life.

"Alright. That was pretty brave. I think you outdid the rest of us," Kori assured her.

They stepped off of the elevator and towards the entrance of the 360 Restaurant, where a hostess awaited them.

"Table for three?" Hoon Kwang addressed the Hostess.

"Right this way? Will you be having cocktails?" the Hostess asked.

"A Gin and Tonic for me, with a twist of lime," Kori ordered.

"Just Tonic and lime for me," Hoon ordered.

"And a Shirley Temple for our little friend here," Kori ordered a non-alcoholic juice based drink for Warai.

"I'm Agnes, your Hostess if you need anything. I'll return with your drinks and your menus," Agnes told them, then making her way back to the bar area.

A moment later, their drinks arrived.

"Thanks for taking us out like this. I think that Warai was starting to get a little anxious, spending her days at West Meet East. Sure, we have fun there, but she really needs a little bit more," Kori explained.

"The school season will be starting soon. Has Heylyn figured that out yet?" asked Hoon.

"She's got a school in mind. I think its near Harbord Street. Its fairly close by. Enough so that Heylyn will be able to walk there and pickup Warai after work," Kori assured Hoon, who took a sip of his lime and tonic.

"That's convenient, not to mention there's no shortage of amenities to keep a little girl like Warai full of curiosity and adventure," Hoon Kwang remarked.

"No, I don't think that she'll ever have any shortage of that," Kori laughed.

Outside of the restaurant, another group emerged from the elevator. Four of the passengers, all of them large men of six foot three or taller stepped into the restaurant and waited for the Hostess.

"How many for your party?" asked the Hostess as she arrived.

"That's fine. We're just waiting on some people. Could you check back with us in a minute?" asked Hewert, the largest of the four.

"Certainly," the Hostess left them and made her way back to the kitchen.

Unbeknownst to her, all four of the men had followed her. After she'd stepped into the kitchen and the doors had closed, they went in, ensuring that the doors had closed behind them. 

"I'm sorry but there's no guests allowed back here," the Hostess told them politely.

"In our case I'm sure that your willingness to make an exception will be the wisest of choices you make today," Hewart pulled a compact SMG from the inside of his coat.

"Now listen up. We're here for one thing, and you're going to help us get it. If you in any way raise an alarm or cry for help, then this little puppy is going to spit thirty rounds of hot lead into your body. This here subsonic silencer on the tip of the barrel will ensure that nobody out there hears a thing. You'll be long gone before anyone knows it. My friends here are going to tie up the kitchen staff, while the Hostess will be our secret diplomat with the world beyond that door. If any of you, or the Hostess raise any alarms, then the lot of you are gone for good. Everybody got it?" confirmed Hewart.

The kitchen staff nodded, as Petaro, Fergus and Mark tied them up, leaving only the Master Chef to finish the cooking he'd already started. The Hostess gave her assurances to Hewart, who kept his SMG leveled at her.

"Now you're going to go out there, and the table with the little girl? You're going to invite them to the kitchen for a tour. When they arrive, we'll take things from there." Hewert ordered the Hostess, who took a deep breath and adjusted her hair before stepping back out into the restaurant.

As she walked, she threw an alarmed glance to Darrell, who sat sipping a glass of cola to cool down. He remained fixated on the view and the Hostess could not be sure if he saw her signal. She continued on towards Warai, Kori and Hoon's table, only to find that Hoon was the only one currently seated there.

"Sir, the Chef has invited you and your little girl for a tour of the kitchen. This is a considerable honour as we rarely have guests into the kitchen. Consider it a special surprise," the Hostess urged Hoon Kwang, trying to warn him with her facial expression much the same way she'd attempted with Darrell, the Police Officer.

"Well that's very kind. They're in the bathroom getting cleaned up for supper. As soon as they're back we'll come take a peek," Hoon responded to the Hostess' invite, but rather than a smile, he only managed to draw a sour look from her.

"I'll have someone collect your wife and your little girl, if you'd be so kind as to come with me now?" she pleaded with him.

"Very well," Hoon stood up from his seat, and as he turned to make his way around the table, he caught a glimpse of the Police Officer sitting across from their table.

He mouthed some words at Hoon, with his back to the kitchen: WATCH OUT!

Hoon pretended like he'd not seen a thing, and maintained his casual appearance as he headed over to the kitchen.

He stepped through the door and was immediately grabbed from behind by a large man, while three others stood facing him, each of them armed with their own SMGs.

At that moment, he could have dispatched the man who'd grabbed him, but he'd have been putting the Hostess in danger if the men had decided to open fire. Also, there was a very good chance that he might have been shot himself.

Instead, he decided to play along, revealing nothing of his training to the men.

"I'm just a poor hot dog cart vendor. I don't want any trouble," Hoon said, raising both of his hands and very much playing the role.

"Where's the little girl?!" Hewert asked the Hostess.

"She's with the lady. They're in the bathroom getting cleaned up," the Hostess told Hewert.

"Go get her and bring her here we start dropping your friends and coworkers," Hewert ordered her.

"Alright. I'm going now!" she said, once again heading out the door, struggling keep her tears at bay.

When she stepped out into the restaurant, she noticed that the Police Officer was no longer there.


Kori helped Warai to wash her hands, sitting her up on the counter beside the sink. Two sinks down from them, Fiona was putting some light finishing touches on her makeup, when she recognized Warai from the street outside of the CN Tower. The flower she'd placed in Warai's hair had fallen to the side and was dangling precariously by her ear.

'Let me get that for you," Fiona put her makeup down and once again adjusted the flower in Warai's hair, this time creating a little braid that kept it solidly in place.

"That's better. It should stay with you for the rest of the evening," Fiona said to Warai.

"Thanks. I'm Kori by the way and this is Warai," Kori introduced herself to Fiona, who accepted her hand.

"Fiona. Recently unemployed and celebrating that fact," Fiona said proudly.

"I'm sorry to hear," Kori responded, a look of concern on her face.

"Don't be. I spent the day hunting for another and found out something about myself in the process," Fiona responded.

"What's that?" Kori asked, now curious about her mysterious friend.

"That sometimes, the biggest opportunities come in the guise of the biggest let downs. Its been an adventure, and I'm enjoying it thoroughly," Fiona admitted.

There was a short tap at the door, before it quickly opened.

"Ladies, are you decent?" asked a man who poked his head cautiously into the lavatory.

"The coast is clear if this is an emergency," Kori responded, quickly checking the stalls for any residents.

"I'm Constable Darrell Hanuck. We have a situation in the kitchen. I'd like you to  stay put for the time being in the bathroom. I'm going to call for some help," Darrell assured the women, as Kori quickly turned the latch on the bathroom door.

Darrell took his phone and dialed a number. The phone returned with a single message: SERVICE NOT AVAILABLE.

He tried again with a different number and got the same result.

"Can one of you try with your phones?" he asked them.

"Sure thing," Kori pulled her phone and dialed an emergency number.

"It says service not available," he told the Police Officer.

"Damn! They must have brought a fake cell tower with them," Darrell told them.

"Alright. I'm going to go back out into the restaurant and remain hidden. I need one of you to try making it for the elevator and to get a message out that the restaurant facility has been taken by armed men. Can you do that?" asked Darrell.

"I can!" Fiona offered.

"Alright. You'll need to circle the outer perimeter of the restaurant and remain out of sight of the kitchen at all costs," Darrell told her.

"I can do that," Fiona said enthusiastically.

"Alright, now you two stay here until help arrives and don't open the door for anyone!" Darrell ordered them.

Darrell disappeared out the door in one direction, while Fiona left in another direction.

Kori watched as Fiona made her way down the hall and around the corner out towards the windows of the slowly revolving restaurant.

"Where's the butterfly?!" Warai asked, the first tinges of fright reaching her.

"What would the butterfly do in this situation?" Kori asked herself, thinking about her friend and employer in the suit that she'd don to become the Butterfly Dragon.

"Come on Warai! We're going to get to the elevator!" Kori pulled Warai behind her as they followed in Fiona's tracks.

The Observation Deck

"Where's the little girl!" Hewert screamed at the Hostess.

"They're gone...!" she began to sob as her tears came forth.

"Petaro, check the elevator and make sure that nobody uses it. Mark, keep watch over the hot dog cart vendor. Fergus and I will search the restaurant for them," Hewert ordered and the three of them left the kitchen, leaving Mark to guard Hoon Kwang.

"These big time Chef, think they know how to cook. They can't even cook a hot dog!" Hoon Kwang began insulting the Master Chef of the restaurant.

"I studied culinary arts for three years at the Culinary Arts Academy in Switzerland, not to mention that I interned for five here, before working my way up. Cooking hot dogs is the least of things I can do with food!" the Chef responded, somewhat offended by Hoon Kwang's remark.

"No. I don't think. Cook hot dog, not like cook anything. It take a special talent," Hoon Kwang once again goaded the Chef, adding a bit of a thick Korean accent to his lament.

"Are you calling me a liar! I'd wager my cooking skills against yours any day!" the Chef responded, now having Mark's full attention.

"Look, I don't want to hear another word out of..." before Mark had even finished his sentence, Hoon Kwang had struck him in the face six times with his fists. Before Mark hit the floor, he was unconscious. Before Mark's SMG hit the floor, Hoon Kwang caught it mid-descent, preventing a misfire of the weapon.

"Anybody injured?" asked Hoon Kwang of the kitchen staff.

"Fine here!" one of the preparatory chefs responded.

The rest of the kitchen staff then assured him they were alright, except for the Master Chef, who responded verbally.

"No physical injuries, but a slightly bruised ego," he said to Hoon Kwang.

"I apologize. I don't cook hot dogs. Stay here and wait for help. Don't make a sound. If they come back, tell them that I attacked this one and escaped, leaving all of you tied up," Hoon smiled as he tied Mark's hands behind his back with one of the clip ties in Mark's pocket.

"Are you really going to leave us tied up?" asked the startled Master Chef.

"Bye for now," Hoon Kwang didn't respond to the Chef's last question, leaving him in silence.

"I'm coming with you!" the Hostess got behind Hoon Kwang.

"Alright, but stay low, and always remain behind me, keeping me between you and any threat," Hoon Kwang asserted to her.

"Does your bad breath count as a threat?" the Hostess asked him, somehow finding room for the relief of humour to ease the tension of stress.

"Only to others. Not myself. This is an advantage until everyone's safely out of this," Hoon Kwang responded, without any sign of jadedness.

Hoon then snuck out the back door of the kitchen, breaking the hi-tech plastic of the SMG into pieces with a good, solid punch.

"Don't want one of them getting hold of that again," Hoon Kwang remarked as he made his way back around to the restaurant, keeping himself low as he proceeded.

"Good idea. Too bad they weren't real toys," the Hostess replied.

"What's your name?" asked Hoon.

"Rachael. Yours?" Rachael asked him.

"Hoon," he told her quietly.

"Is that little girl your grand daughter?" Rachael asked him.

"In a matter of speaking. They are both like family to me. Let's get her back to safety," Hoon replied, maintaining his focus went.


Fiona got past the bar area of the restaurant and was now out of sight of the kitchen and making her way along the side nearest the windows of the revolving restaurant. She continued moving forward until she could clearly see the walkway to the entrance of the restaurant and the knick-knack shops beyond. Only a few meters from her current perspective, the nearest elevator was on its way up.

She saw Petaro, with his SMG tugged neatly behind his arm, keeping it very well hidden to all but those who knew where to look.

He checked the elevator area and upon finding no evidence of Warai or Kori, he simply turned around casually and made his way back to the front door of the restaurant. He then found the latch keeping both the doors open and closed them, locking them both so that nobody could get in, and the only way out was through him.

He then hid behind a pillar, keeping an eye on the only way out of the restaurant, or so he thought.

Fiona reasoned that she could sneak by him and around the pillar, so long as she moved very quietly. She'd already removed her heels, putting them in her purse, making her movement nearly silent. She evaluated the situation one last time and decided that it was her best bet.

She started moving towards the pillar behind which Petaro leaned, but at the moment she began to move, keeping herself clinging to the wall, Petaro spotted her.

"Hold it right there M'aam. I'd hate to mess up your outfit with bullet holes," he said to her, leveling his SMG upon her.

Darrell, who'd been hidden in pursuit of Petaro since leaving the bathroom, aimed his service Glock at the center of the larger man's body as he stepped out from cover to draw Petaro's aim away from Fiona.

"Hands in the air! Toronto Police Service!" Darrell yelled, keeping his Glock aimed at Petaro's center of density.

Petaro turned and immediately opened fire upon Darrell. Five rounds managed to leave the barrel of the SMG before the sixth, which had a defect upon the parabellum surface, lodged itself between the breech and the ejection port.

One of the rounds clipped Darrell's body armour, while another miraculously hit the inside of the barrel of his Glock, effectively rendering the weapon inoperable. The remaining three rounds impacted the walls beside him.

While Petaro struggled to clear the breech of his weapon, Darrell threw his Glock at Petaro while charging at the larger man, and colliding with him in a diving tackle. The SMG flew out of Petaro's hands, though remained close thanks to the strap he'd secured to his vest.

While Darrell, struggled with Petaro, Fiona took advantage of the distraction and ran for the restaurant door. She hit the door, and then remembered that it was locked. She quickly unbolted the door and it opened freely as she ran out into the CN Tower restaurant level foyer.


Kori advanced, keeping herself low while keeping Warai behind her.

When they'd heard the first of Darrell's confrontation of Petaro, they thought that they might have been rescued.

"Oh good! The Police are here!" Kori turned and began making her way back to the restaurant while Warai resisted her.

"We have to wait for the butterfly!" Warai insisted, resisting Kori's change in direction.

At that moment, Kori saw Fergus first, and then Hewart, both of whom immediately saw her and Warai.

"There she is!" Fergus yelled, running straight at them.

Kori immediately picked up Warai and began running full tilt around the exterior of the revolving restaurant. She heard the first few shots fired from Fergus' SMG (he wasn't as trigger happy as Petaro). Two rounds left the gun, both impacting the resistant glass of the restaurant. The glass rippled much like the windshield of a car, a web pattern appearing where the rounds had impacted. The glass however remained intact and the restaurant continued its hourly revolution.

Kori stumbled once, trying to bring herself in tighter to the inside curve of the restaurant, tripping over one of the chairs as she attempted so. She caught herself, averting a fall that surely would have injured them both. Miraculously, she kept running as fast as her legs could carry them both.

A few more rounds whizzed by them, once again, impacting the windows of the restaurant.

Over Kori's shoulder, Warai could see that Fergus was slowly catching up.

"He's getting up to us!" Warai screamed as Kori saw a door to the service area.

"Hang on honey!" Kori screamed as she kicked the service door open, almost picturing the Butterfly Dragon herself doing the same thing.

When she continued through the open door, she half expected to feel the pain of injury to her leg, the one she'd used to kick the door, but her leg was fine. Somehow, she'd managed to do it the right way.

Kori passed another door, and then came to the end of all, and to another door, however this one was locked from the other side. At the othber end of the hall, she saw Fergus just arriving in the hall in which she was now trapped. 

"Try to other door Kori!" Warai suggested. 

Kori just moved, immediately grabbing the handle of the door and throwing it open. She was quickly through it, but didn't notice the sign which read:

Observation Deck Service Stairs

When she arrived at the bottom of a stairwell, she was confused.

"I thought the restaurant was the top?" Kori asked herself.

"He's coming!" Warai screamed as Fergus opened the door and leveled his SMG at them.

"Don't! You'll hit the little girl! If she's gone, we're all done!" Hewart screamed at Fergus.

Kori didn't wait before she began bounding the stairs two steps at a time. Each flight of stairs was four times the distance of a regular flight, and before Kori had reached the top of the first flight, her legs were burning intensely with the pain of over-expenditure. She gasped as she started the second flight, instead taking only single steps as quickly as she could. Behind her, she could hear them running up the stairs and catching up with her.


Back in Heylyn's design office at West Meet East International, the sound of a television could be heard within the room, as several reporters now on camera had arrived at the base of the CN Tower, amidst reports of armed gunmen storming the restaurant level.

The door to Heylyn's design office suddenly flew open, as Aikiko stepped through the door looking frantically for Heylyn, but she was nowhere to be seen. Aikiko saw the light material of the dress Heylyn had been working on as it fluttered in the breeze.

"Wait, there's no windows in here...?" Aikiko said to herself as she looked up and saw that the skylight was shattered, as if something or someone had flown up through it with tremendous force.

Aikiko turned and immediately ran to where she hoped she could find Monique.


Kori fell to the floor of the fifth flight landing, letting Warai down gently as she did. Kori's heart pounded as she gasped for air.

"Run Warai!" Kori said as she struggled to her feet.

By that point Fergus had just arrived at the same landing, he too out of breath, considering that he outweighed Kori by two and a half times her own weight.

When he took his first step onto the landing, she charged at him trying to throw him off and onto Hewart. Fergus caught Kori's arms, but was forced backwards enough that he struggled to maintain his balance, holding onto Kori for dear life.

Kori lost her balance and fell towards Fergus as he dragged her along with himself down the long fall ahead of them. She slid atop of him for the first nine steps, and then he rolled as she caught one of the railings. She banged her shin painfully, but somehow managed to land on her feet while Fergus continued tumbling down the stairs.

Hewart, who had kept his eyes on Warai, just side stepped them as they rolled past on their way down the stairs. He reached out to Warai, who immediately turned and began running up the sixth flight of stairs. She ran with the little effort it took to carry her small body, and considering that she hadn't used her energy while Kori had carried her, she managed to easily outrun Hewart, who continued hauling his 300 pound body of muscle up the stairs much to the chagrin of his respiratory system.

By the time Warai was at the tenth and final flight, Hewart was still two flights behind her.

"Kori!" Warai yelled, crying as she called out for her friend.

No reply came back to Warai. She turned around and continued up the stairs until she arrived at the final landing and another big door. Miraculously she turned the knob and the door opened, a pair of keys dangling from it. She took the keys with her and  closed the door behind her.

The area she was in was like the restaurant level, a circular rounded platform though this one was much smaller. A short distance away, she saw the owner of the keys, a man pushing a mop as he cleaned the interior of the Observation Deck of the CN Tower.

She heard the sound of pounding on the other side of the door, and then a voice pleading with her to open it.

"Little girl! You and your friend Kori are going to have such a good life with us! I promise you! There's going to be candy and ice cream and everything you want!" Hewart pleaded with her, as he searched the landing for a way to break the lock.

"How are we going to pay for it?" Warai asked the man as she remembered what Kori had said about ice cream sweet foods.

"Don't you worry about a thing! You won't have to pay for any ice cream at all!" he replied to her as he found a service panel in the back wall of the landing.

"You aren't good for my friends and me! Ice cream is very tasty, but you have to pay for it by being good to your body too!" Warai now understood that taking care of her body was very important.

Warai suddenly jumped back when she heard the sound of a small hand sledge impacting the door knob with a loud clang. The impact was so hard that the door knob on Warai's side of the door flew off too. Hewart began pounding the lock mechanism with the sledge, stopping once to peer at Warai through the hole that was once occupied by the door knobs and their connective hilt.

She screamed and ran for a door with a large chain across it. She tried the keys one by one until she found a key that fit the padlock for the chained door. Saw the sign but didn't understand what the Edge Walk was. She tried turning the key, but her little fingers weren't strong enough. She tried again, and this time heard a click from inside of the large padlock. Warai removed the padlock from the chain, and unwound it to reveal the door which it had kept contained.

She turned the door knob and was greeted with an unobstructed view of the city of Toronto as it stretched out for kilometers in all directions around them. She hesitated, her legs paralyzed, suddenly stricken with vertigo, a fear of heights. She tried to push herself forward out onto the small walkway that encircled the exterior of the Observation Deck, but found that she could not move.

The door behind which she'd locked Hewart suddenly swung open, and he emerged with a small hand sledge in his right hand. He began advancing towards her.

Warai then closed her eyes and stepped out onto the walkway, following it by feel alone. When she felt a sudden gust of air nearly lift her from the walkway, which had no railings for her to grab, she could not help but open her eyes. When she saw the world around her, a vast distance beneath her, she felt nothing but terror.

Hewart by that time had stepped out onto the walkway, and had grabbed hold of the inner railing, the one to which the Edge Walkers would fasten themselves when partaking of this thrill ride at the very top of Toronto.

"Come on! I'll take you inside where you'll be safe," Hewart reached for her, but she was just out of his grasp.

"You tried to hurt Kori! She's my friend!" Warai cried, frozen in her step and unsure of what to do.

She then tried closing her eyes again, and began walking away from Hewart, unsure of where she was going.

Hewart, holding firmly onto the inside railing, followed after the brave little girl.

When they'd ventured a quarter of the way around, Kori emerged through the door at the top of the final landing. When she saw the door to the Edge Walk laying open, she immediately knew where Warai was. Courageously, she ran out onto the walkway, looking in both directions for Warai.

"Warai!" Kori yelled.

"Kori!" Warai replied, her face quickly dampened by tears of joy.

"You keep going and stay away from him! I'm meet you from the other direction. Alright?" Kori confirmed with Warai.

"Ok!" Warai agreed, keeping her eyes closed as she walked around the walkway to avoid Hewart.

Fergus emerged and followed behind Kori, pursuing behind her. Kori them wondered what her and Warai would do when they were surrounded by the two men on each side.


Darrell rolled under Petaro, who punched him several times in the face.

"How's that feel?!" Petaro asked Darrell as he wound up for another.

"I've had worse!" Darrell responded, as Petaro threw another punch.

Darrell dodged it to the left, as Petaro's fist impacted the solid floor, breaking two of his knuckles.

Darrell tried to take advantage of the situation and throw Petaro off of him, but the larger man managed to stay firmly on Darrell, keeping him pinned.

This time, Petaro hit Darrell with his elbow, full force.

Darrell suddenly found the world spinning quite literally, as he fought to retain his consciousness.

"Now that was exceptionally close to the land of nod..." Darrell remarked as he struggled through it.

Fiona suddenly appeared, returning through the door she'd left a minute earlier, bracketed on either side by two very large security constables, each with a taser aimed at Petaro.

"That's one of them right there," Fiona said, referring to Petaro.

Petaro raised both his hands, when one of the Security Constables fired his taser.

"He went for a weapon!" the Constable said as Petaro writhed under the electrical force of the taser.

Darrell struggled out from under Petaro as the two Constables took Petaro's SMG from him.

"Good job," Darrell assured the Security Constables.

"You too," Darrell turned to Fiona.

"What about the little girl?" asked Fiona.

"Restrain him, there's three more running around here, all armed with 9mm SMGs. Wait for backup. I'll go after the little girl!" Darrell immediately ran past them and back into the restaurant.


Hoon led Rachael around the restaurant, finally arriving at the same service door through which Kori and Warai had fled minutes earlier.

"I have a key for this door..." Rachael pointed to the door at the end of the hall.

The very same door that Kori had tried before fleeing up to the observation deck.

"You go that way and get help from the foyer. I'm going to go after them up the stairs here..." Hoon Kwang advised Rachael.

"Thank you for getting me here safely, Hoon," Rachael gave him a light kiss on the forehead.

Before she left, she reached into her pocket and produced a breath mint.

"I forgot I had this..." Rachael handed him the mint.

"Thank you. Good timing. Now get to safety," Hoon smiled, and popped the breath mint into his mouth.

Rachael made her way to the door and out into the foyer while Hoon Kwang began bounding up the stairs two at a time. With both his compact weight, and his physical health, he made good time on the ten flights, and was in remarkably good condition when he arrived at the observation deck.

He quickly followed the trail of opened doors and found himself out on the Edge Walk walkway, following in the same direction Kori and then Fergus had taken.

On the other side of the walkway, one hundred and eighty degrees around, Warai stepped forward precariously close to the outside edge as Kori emerged from the other side. She immediately spotted Warai and ran for her, catching the little girl just before she'd stepped over the edge.

"Kori!" Warai wrapped her arms around her friend.

"I've got you!" Kori returned her affectionate hug as Fergus and Hewart emerged on either side.

"You've got nowhere to run now. Why don't you just hand over the little girl to us, and we'll leave with her, and nobody gets hurt?" Hewart suggested to Kori.

"She's not your little girl!" Kori said defiantly, charging at Fergus, whom she'd known had an injured leg from his fall. She quickly side-stepped him, sticking close to the inner curvature of the tower and away from the ledge as Fergus pursued her.

Kori made her way quickly around the walkway, while Fergus had trouble keeping up. When he was sure that he might lose her for good, he took a dive at her legs, trying to fold her over to the walkway. Kori was thrown furiously to the metal walkway, Warai rolling out of her arms and over the edge. 

Hoon Kwang dove for Warai, as she tumbled out into open space. Hoon Kwang's arm caught the ledge and Warai's reaching hand. He dangled with her, holding on with all of his strength as he lifted her up and over the ledge.

"Run Warai!" Hoon Kwang urged the little girl as he struggled to pull himself up and onto the walkway.

Warai instead turned and ran at Fergus, trying to pull his hand away from her abdomen.

"You get away from her!" Warai yelled at him.

He quickly changed his focus from Kori to Warai, grabbing her and stepping up and onto his feet as Hewart caught up with them.

As Hoon Kwang got himself back up safely on the walkway, Hewart fired a couple of rounds from his SMG.

Before they could impact, a pair of giant butterfly wings intervened between them. The rounds glanced harmlessly off of the impenetrable surface of the wings, reflected in an angle that did not return them towards Warai in any way.

"Its a long way down from here. I'd suggest you give me the little girl, so you don't find out first hand the fastest way down," the Butterfly Dragon, or at least a woman with her same wings and mask stood before them, though her costume wasn't quite right.

"Butterfly?" Warai smiled.

"Its me little flower. I just didn't have time to change," Heylyn said from behind her mask, though she was still wearing the same outfit she'd worn to West Meet East that day.

"So what's it going to be?" Heylyn asked, looking to Fergus.

Before Fergus had even a second to respond, the Butterfly Dragon was off and flying with Hewart in her arms. He dangled by his foot as she flew him upwards so they could all see. She then let him go, and  watched as he fell, doing absolutely nothing to save him.

She then lowered herself down onto the walkway, landing safely as her wings expanded to encompass Fergus and herself.

By that time Darrell had arrived, and Fergus was now completely surrounded.

"Your friend will be hitting the streets of Toronto in about thirty seconds. There's still time to save him if you hand over that little girl," Heylyn urged him.

Fergus paused a moment, and then handed Warai to Kori. Almost immediately, Heylyn disappeared on a downward flight trajectory to intercept Hewart before he hit the pavement.

Heylyn sped up as Hewart's altitude hit a hundred meters, then fifty and then twenty. When he was sixteen meters from the paved surface, Heylyn caught him, using twelve of those meters to slow down enough so that none of his bones were broken. She then landed with him, handing him over to a group of Police Officers who'd arrived at the ground station they were setting up.

"Here's one of the suspects, Officers. I think you'll find the rest of them are already restrained or in the process of being so," Heylyn said to the Officers.

Before they could respond, she was off and into the air, flying directly up to the Observation Deck where Darrell led Fergus in hand-cuffs around the walkway back to the door. 

Kori kept close to the inner curve of the tower as she walked with Warai in her arms.

"How was that for an adventurous day?" asked Hoon Kwang of Kori and Warai, just as the Butterfly Dragon returned.

"Can we do that again?!" Warai asked excitedly.

"You could, but who's going to eat all of that ice cream you earned?" asked Heylyn of her little girl.

Warai stopped and thought about it for a moment before she responded.

"Oh. That's true. Maybe we shouldn't try that again. That way, we can eat ice cream!" Warai said excitedly as they arrived near the door.

In a bright but not blinding flash, Monique in her Eclipse costume, and Aikiko in her Dragon Butterfly costume appeared beside them.

"Did we miss all the fun?" Monique asked.

"No. We're just going for ice cream now!" Warai responded.

"From Warai's point of view, you're just in time," Kori replied.

When Kori, Warai and Hoon Kwang were safely inside the tower, Butterfly Dragon, Eclipse and Dragon Butterfly left.

"We'll see you downstairs sweetie. You too Kori..." Heylyn said to them, as she took off into the air and returned to West Meet East to resume her day as her other identity, Heylyn Yates  also known by her family name: Ai Yuanlin Ying.


Heylyn had temporarily sealed the skylight with a large piece of plywood, Braden fastening it to the skylight frame as best he could.

Heylyn, Monique and Aikiko made their way to the CN Tower to meet Warai, Kori and Hoon after they'd been questioned by Police.

It only took a half an hour to get their statements, and to collect their contact information, for there would certainly be some court appearances for each of them, and they were more than willing to help ensure that those men received their due.

When they left, they all made their way to a local restaurant known for absurd helpings of food and desert, though most of them ate light.

The only exception was Warai, who had a large helping of ice cream to compensate for all of the energy she'd burned that day.

"After all the running I did today, I don't think I could eat another bite," Kori admitted, her legs still burning from the intense exercise.

"Can I have yours?" asked Warai, drawing a laughter from those at the table.

"Kori. Can I have a word with you?" Heylyn said to Kori in a very serious voice.

"Sure. Oh no, here it comes..." Kori said as she got up from her chair in the restaurant and followed Heylyn over to another set of tables where they sat down for a private conversation.

"You know, Warai is the most important part of my life right now," Heylyn said to Kori.

"Look. It wasn't my fault. I did everything I could to stop her from revealing herself like that. Her abilities. I did everything I could to protect her..." Kori defended herself, still feeling guilty over what had happened.

"Kori. I know. You did better than anyone ever could have. And you did it all without a pair of wings. Without martial arts training. Without super powers. Just like many other moms out there do every day, but you'd be at their very top. I may have doubted your ability to protect my little girl, especially with her unique abilities, but you went above and beyond, without having any abilities of your own. Just that part of you that makes you. Warai is with us and still unknown, because of you and Hoon Kwang and..." Heylyn addressed Kori, but not as an employee.

As the best kind of friend a little girl could have.


Fiona sat in one of the reception chairs, reading one of the monthly trade magazines common to the industry within which she was applying for a position.

"Fiona? Our new Human Resources Manager, she's ready to see you, if you'll just follow me," the receptionist led Fiona through a hall and two sets of doors and into the office where her interview was to take place.

"Please, sit down and make yourself comfortable. You didn't have too much trouble finding the place did you?" asked the interviewer.

"No, not at all. Its a great location. So close to everything. Almost like the heart of the city," Fiona responded, drawing a smile from the interviewer.

"So what would inspire a star employee who worked with a team of financial analysts in one of Toronto's most successful firms, to seek a completely different work environment in our industry?" the interviewer asked.

"Well, when our company was bought out by Werner-Goldstein Holdings, I really had to examine where I wanted to focus my energy for my next commitment to a team, and this industry struck me as a perpetual source of creative and inspired energy, while maintaining aspects of finances and planning that ignite my passion and drive. I think I'm a great match for this environment," Fiona replied.

"Ten years from now, on your resumé from that time, what will be the accomplishments you've accumulated here? How will they read?" asked the Interviewer.

"I implemented many solutions that ensured that every department was speaking the same lingo, and using the same tools so that every department operated efficiently and cost effectively while focusing on the core aspect of the industry, inspired creativity, that can be seen, that can be felt..." Fiona responded.

"How are you with kids?" asked the Interviewer.

"Kids? Uhhhh, I'm fine. I think you'd find they're fine with me," Fiona smiled a little caught off guard with the question.

"Last but not least, do you like ice cream?" asked Kori.

"Certainly, but as long as you earn it first," Fiona replied with a smile on her face.

"You got the job. You can start with West Meet East International on next Monday, where you'll be reporting to Valerie Aspen for the amount plus a five thousand dollar yearly bonus. Congratulations," Kori stood and shook hands with Fiona.

The End

For all those Moms who do it all without super powers. For Fiona (FERRETINA FILM PPRODUCTIONS LTD) and Lisa (ANIMATION GROUP LTD), the two best production assistants ever. For Darrell.

The Butterfly Dragon: The Two Butterflies will return in Episode 07 next week.

Credits and attribution:

Artwork: Amy WongWendy PuseyGhastly, Brian Joseph Johns, Daz3DUnreal Engine...

Tools: Daz3DCorel PainterAdobe PhotoshopLightwave 3DBlender, Google, Microsoft Windows, Steam, Naraka: Bladepoint and UbiSoft for stress relief. Borderline Obsession too...

Once I again, I must clarify that I am not a Jehovah's Witness or a member of Prince Hall with all due respect. I'd certainly never be a part of any ideology that erases the existence of people, something I seem to have become a target of myself, and my real life father's name is David.