Lore File: Miss M’s Onboarding [Pt 1]

Beginning transcript of first interview with candidate now referred to as “Miss M.”

Director: "Okay, from now on we'll refer to you as ... Hmmm, let's go with Miss M. Is that okay?"

M: "I suppose that's fine. Why the codename, though?"

Director: "We try not to make a habit of using real names here. You'll see why later."

M: "Okay..."

Director: "After reviewing your application and initial assessments, we'd like to move forward with an interview. It's nothing complicated, but it may get a little personal. Just answer as honestly as you can. Any questions?"

M: "No."

Director: "So, my first item of interest is your diagnosis of mana poisoning. How did that come about?"

M: "Oh, um... When I was in middle school, I got exposed. I sort of had a habit of trying to fit in with the wrong kids."

Director: "Of course. What happened?"

M: "Well, at the time I lived in the suburbs, towards the outskirts. This was before the border fence got put up properly. We got looking around in the woods, and found an old house. The woods and the ground floor were fine, but... a bunch of mana had settled into the basement. We sort of dared each other to go down, we did, but they... y-y'know. Tied me to the support post and left."

Director: "How did you get out?"

M: "Turns out kids are bad at tying knots, especially when they're in a hurry. I think I was only down there for maybe half an hour before I managed to get free. They were long gone by then, though. I just walked home." 

Director: "When did symptoms start?"

M: "Pretty shortly afterward. I started hearing ... something like a wind chime. My hands stopped working well and I started slurring my speech a lot. I used to sit on the floor in the school lobby, but I couldn't pull myself up to my feet for a while." 

Director: "How is it now?"

M: "Better. My hands still don't work well, but I can do most things I need to." 

Director: "How about the chime noise?"

M: "I still hear it occasionally. I've learned to just ignore it."

Director: "Many mana poisoning victims report sounds like that, even in mild cases like yours. They claim it's trying to lead them somewhere. Does it seem like it's coming from a specific place, to you?"

M: "Hmm... I guess so. Never thought about it." 

Director: "Well, that's not very important anyway. The mana that made its way into your brain stimulates your senses, giving the false impression of a sound. It's safe to ignore."

M: "Okay..."

Director: "Moving on. There's a part of the form you seemed to have difficulty with. I suspect you know which part I'm talking about."


Director: "May I ask why you scribbled out some of your answers?"


Director: "Miss M?"

M: "... N-no... I ... um... it's... hard to talk about..."

Director: "I see... we can come back to that later. Why don't you go grab a drink, and we can continue in a few minutes, okay?"

[The sound of a chair scooting across the floor as Miss M stands, leaving the room without saying a word.]

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