Carpathia III: Episode 35 - Pounce

Zhail City, Sra's Sundries

Adell walked slowly up to the door of Sra's Sundries, clutching his ribs, several of which he was sure were brusied. As he grabbed the doorknob, he sighed as though it would prepare him for what he knew was about to come, and turned it. The door itself slid silently open as he pushed, but jingled a pair of bells that were hanging just below the top.

Adell: I'm back.

He knew that any attempt to run or hide would be futile, so he just remained where he was, just two steps inside the shop. He didn't have to wait more than a few seconds, before the familiar sight of a red and white blur came hurtling at him.

Artemis: MREYOW!


And, once again, Adell was tackled to the ground.

Artemis: Welcome back!

Adell: This is a side of you I am just never going to get used to.

Artemis sat up, continuing to hold Adell down at his chest while his legs straddled his hips.

Artemis: Don't be such a baby. I can heal any injuries that you get.

Adell: That's not what I mean.

Artemis leaned in and whispered into his ear.

Artemis: I can do that thing with my tail that you like.

Adell was in no mood for even that. He put his hands on Artemis's shoulders and began to push.

Adell: Just get off of me.

Artemis pinched his lips together in frustration before finally sitting up.

Artemis: Fine. Who peed in your corn flakes today?

Now that Artemis wasn't holding him down, Adell was able to sit up.

Adell: Sorry. I'm just sick of this place. It's always hot. It never rains...

Sra: What's rain?

Adell looked up to see Sra coming towards them.

Adell: That's exactly what I'm talking about.

Artemis: It's water falling from the sky in drops.

Sra: That sounds like it could be useful. As long as there wasn't too much, anyway.

Adell looked up at Sra.

Adell: Sra, what's with these King's Sentries people? Before, they were just annoying, popping up all the time and asking for my papers. Today, one of them punched me in the gut.

Sra looked away from him for a moment, thinking, before he turned back.

Sra: Some of them are out on power trips, I think. It sounds like you got a bad one this time. Don't tell anyone I said this, but I question the need of them. There is a compound on the other side of the Arid Sea run by a madman called Maelstrom. He has an army there. The King's Sentries are supposed to keep tabs on peoples' papers in order to make sure there are no infiltrators. I've never in my life heard of an actual soldier of Maelstrom's being caught here and there hasn't been any sort of war in anyone's living memory. That's why our social structure exists though: to keep order.

Adell: Sounds like a load of bunk to me.

Sra: Well, whatever you do, don't say that where anyone else can hear you. That's a good way to go to prison. Anyway, tomorrow is a holiday, so that'll give you time to recover.

Haria: Oi! What are you three doing sitting around?

It was never difficult to tell when Haria entered the room. Her voice seemed to be stuck on maximum volume.

Sra: Haria, there are no customers here. There are no orders to be delivered. It's a holiday tomorrow, remember?

Haria: I know that! You can... um... can...

Artemis and Adell ignored her stuttering as they headed towards their room.

Artemis: I'll fix that injury of yours up for you.

Haria: You can sweep this floor!

Both of them turned and looked at her in exasperation, as she was clearly making something up to make herself look less foolish. Adell sighed. He raised his hands up, straight out from his body, and then slowly drew his hands together in front of him. All the dirt on the floor of the shop followed his hands to the point where he brought them together, where it ended up in a neat little pile in the center. He then raised his hands up, and the dirt followed, and he pushed it all into a small trash can in the corner.

Sra: How did you do that?

Adell: Just some Carpathian technology.

Without another word, he turned around and walked into his room, leaving a very confused Sra and Haria standing on the shop floor.

Artemis: I thought we were going to keep all that a secret here.

Adell: I know. It's just that my tolerance for bullshit is very low today.

Artemis: Hmmm... Well, anyway, lift up your shirt and show me where that guy hit you.

Commissioned art in this episode from:
Atomic Clover

All city pictures from SimCity 4

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