Carpathia III: Episode 111: Blue Bottle
Yseri, outside Volcano
Adell collapsed on the ground, unable to continue any further and did his best to lay Jaze in a soft, srubby patch on the desert. Though Azrael had been able to carry Jaze seemingly with ease, Adell found that this was much more difficult than it seemed and he was further slowed by Toma, who clearly could not move very quickly. Escape, however, was not difficult. In the ensuing chaos, he and Toma were able to slip away easily without hassle. Panting heavily, he thought about the others, hoping they could also escape without any harrassment.
Toma: Are we safe here?
Adell looked back toward Volcano and he could still see the city perched upon the hill with dust still hanging in the air from where the Ringmaster's mansion once stood.
Adell: I'm not sure. I think we're safe from anyone in Volcano. I don't think anyone really understands what happened. Still, I'm going to hide us, just to be safe.
Adell hovered his hands over the ground and, a second later, a large rock suddenly emerged from beneath the surface. He continued until forming a wall of rocks around himself, Toma, and Jaze while Toma looked on in astonishment.
Adell: There. I know Azrael and Artemis will know what this means when they see it. Anyone else will just think it's a bunch of strange rocks.
Adell glanced around, admiring his handiwork, when he suddenly caught sight of Toma's face, which was entirely gnarled in confusion.
Toma: I... have a lot of questions. First is if Jaze is going to be okay.
Adell raised his eyebrows and silently admonished himself for not having considered that Toma wouldn't know anything about what he had just seen. Adell scratched the back of his head as he wondered where to start.
Adell: Right. Of course you wouldn't know. Let me think of how I should start. First, Jaze will be fine. As for the rest...
Adell's voice trailed off as he considered how best to explain the situation.
By the time Ryuu, followed shortly by Phobos and Deimos arrived, Jaze was awake and Adell was finishing up his very brief summary for Toma. After assuring them that everyone else was able to leave Volcano without incident, Ryuu soared back into the sky, intending to guide the others to Adell, Jaze, and Toma.
Jaze clung to Toma like a homesick koala, happy to be reunited, but upset at the same time.
Jaze: I think this is the first time I've directly killed someone.
Toma pulled his arm tighter around Jaze's chest. Though slight, Jaze thought he could feel a slight trembling from Toma's hand.
Toma: I'm glad you did. No world is any good with people like that in it. I hope you got Ringmaster too. That was his mansion that you destroyed.
Jaze felt better upon hearing this. Thus far, nearly all of the nastiest parts of his ordeal had involved bad things happening to good people. To hear that someone terrible had just received comeuppance felt strangely comforting.
The feeling did not last long. The slight tremor in Toma's hand now rapidly increased in magnitude and soon, he doubled over, seemingly unable to sit up straight any longer.
Unable to even remain seated, Toma flopped to the ground and began to convulse, as though he were having a seizure.
Toma: Blue... bottle...
With great effort, Toma reached into his waistband and pulled out a tiny blue bottle. Unable to hold it in his trembling hand, it dropped to the ground and Jaze examined it closely with one hand while trying to keep Toma steady with the other.
Jaze: It's empty!
Toma: Find... blue... bottle...
His mind racing, Jaze could only consider one possibility, that what Toma needed was in Volcano. Going back, though a tremendous risk, was one he was willing to take.
Before Jaze could utter another word, Adell shouted over him.
Adell: Phobos! Deimos!
Right away, Phobos and Deimos snapped to attention.
Phobos and Deimos: Yes, Master Adell!
Adell grabbed the tiny blue bottle and held it out to Phobos and Deimos.
Adell: Take this, find out what's in it, and get more!
Deimos took the blue bottle from Adell and put her finger inside. After a momentary pause, she dropped it on the ground and addressed Adell again.
Deimos: Analysis complete. On our way!
In a flash, Phobos and Deimos bolted from the stone enclosure and quickly disappeared toward Volcano. Adell turned his attention back to Toma. Jaze was already clutching one of Toma's hands with both of his. Adell took the other and held it tight.
Though Adell and Jaze had settled in for a long wait, both were surprised to see Phobos and Deimos entering the stone enclosure again after only a short while. Each was carrying as many tiny blue bottles as they could, about five each.
Phobos: We found some.
Adell took one of the bottles in his hand and pulled the cap off. Hesitantly, he leaned forward and sniffed it. Though he detected little more than a very slight, sweet scent, he was nevertheless wary of giving the mystery liquid to Toma.
Adell: What's in this?
Deimos: Analysis indicates 200ml water, 10g sweetener, and 150mg caffeine.
Adell paused for a moment, all while Jaze was becoming more antsy by the moment behind him.
Jaze: Just let him have it!
Reluctantly, Adell handed over the blue bottle and right away, Toma drank greedily from it. Almost immediately, Toma's tremors began to subside.
Adell: I guess he's been taking these for awhile. We're going to have to find a solution because we won't be able to keep this up and it wouldn't be good for Toma to do that anyway.
Jaze grumbled as he wiped sweat from Toma's brow.
Jaze: Duh. That much is obvious. You think too much sometimes. There are times when you just have to do something and figure it out later.
Jaze paused, surprised at himself that those words escaped his lips.
Adell: You might be right. On the other hand, in some matters, it seems I don't think enough, but that's another subject entirely. Anyway, Artemis might be able to do something when he gets here, so we'll have to wait.
Together, Jaze and Adell watched over Toma as he slowly recovered while waiting for the others to arrive.
All city pictures from SimCity 4