Author: RiddleEsme PM
Welcome to a post apocalyptic world where steam engines, robots, air ships and crazy inventors and detectives rule the world.Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Romance/Humor - Chapters: 5 - Words: 17,717 - Published: 05-23-12 - id: 3025222
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
The clock ticked loudly at the side of the wall. I sat on the couch feeling sweat dripping down my forehead. Maki sat beside me; Richard the owl was chewing orange fur. A man sat opposite us. A round bellied man with round features. A man I recognised very well. He was staring at Richard, horror etched on his face.
"Erm…" I spoke first, trying to break up the tense silence.
The man turned to me and I gulped when I saw tears in his eyes.
"Mr…Mr Brown…Mr John Brown…" the man stuttered. "Do…Do not tell me…that orange fur…that orange fur your owl is eating…belo…belongs to…Tabby."
I winced and looked at my feet.
"I'm afraid it is, Mr Watson," Maki spoke and I slammed my hand on her shoulder.
"Oui!" I shouted.
Maki turned to glare at me in annoyance. Mr Watson broke down in tears, clutching his eyes and sobbing loudly.
"Ah…look what you've done!" I seethe. "You just made a grown man cry!"
Maki frowned, and then look at Richard who was still chewing the bits of orange fur and she shrugged. "Animals die now and then, what's the problem?"
"Honestly," I muttered.
"Tabby, my Tabby!" the man wailed.
The clock ticked and I sank back into the couch.
Somebody…somebody save me from this nightmare. How did this happen anyway…
Well, I guess I would have to rewind the clock then.
36 hours earlier…
After the incident at Swan Lake, I shifted into Maki's office. Compared to my large mansion, Maki's office was a cramped up little apartment with no space to move. To make matters worse, it would seem that the little red head has no knowledge of housekeeping.
"I'm glad you made the right choice, John," Sarah had told me when she found out what had happened.
"I'm beginning to doubt my decision though," I muttered as I picked up a stack of old books that Maki had thrown onto the floor the day before.
It has been a week since I've started to live with little miss detective…and what can I say, the girl is just as mysterious as the moons of Jupiter.
"Ms Nishimura!" I called out from the kitchen counter, "Get out of bed!"
Bed, in this case, was the couch.
"It's Maki damm you," the girl grumbled rolling off the couch lazily, slamming against the floor before picking herself up. I watched her lazy posture and gave a heavy sigh.
"You've stayed up late again haven't you!" I nagged at her.
Richard the owl cooed beside me and I served him a piece of bacon which I had fried.
"Eggs," Maki muttered as she strolled into the tiny kitchen, scratching her tummy. Her hair was in a mess; her white blouse was riding up her chest.
"Oh my god, look at yourself!" I scolded; I proceeded to pull her blouse down. I sat her by the dining table and placed a plate of bacon and eggs in front of her. Maki yawned and I tsked, pouring a cup of coffee for her and placing the daily newspaper Joseph had delivered beside her.
"It's morning and you look like a drag," I said, taking off my apron and sitting opposite her with my own cup of tea.
"You're like my wife," Maki said in an amused tone, watching me. Her red eyes staring into mine and I felt a blush riding up my cheeks.
What was with me? Why was I so…
"I am not your wife; I am a perfectly healthy boy for goodness sake."
"You cook, you make the coffee, you do my laundry, you feed Richard, you clean…you're pretty much my wife," Maki said, grinning, pointing a fork at me.
I grit my teeth in annoyance and grab the fork Maki had held up.
"I do all that because you wouldn't do it! I don't want to live in a pig's sty for god's sake!" I exclaimed. "And secondly, what is with your lazy attitude, you're supposed to protect me aren't you!"
"Aye, aye, I'm doing my job, my wife," Maki said, plucking the fork out of my grasps and digging it into her eggs.
"If protecting me means keeping me cooped up in this small cramp apartment, then I'm dying of boredom!" I shouted at her. Maki placed her fork down and stared at me with a bored expression.
"It has only been a week," she said, "How could you be dying in boredom?"
"Are you kidding me, there is nothing to do here," I argued.
Maki pointed at the large shelves of books surrounding her apartment.
"Then read," she said.
"I do not understand ruined language!" I exclaim.
"What…a student of Einstein's Institute can't read ruined language?" Maki said in disgust.
"Hey, hey, newsflash, nobody can," I told Maki who frowned.
"But I can," she said and then she smirked, "This is why the world is so disappointing."
"You are disappointing," I said, pointing at her. "Sitting and lazing around all day…your lifestyle disappoints me."
"Ah, shut up," Maki said waving her fork at me, "Stop criticising my lifestyle, yours ain't no better."
"Excuse me but I do have a life…well I had a life," I told her, pushing back my blonde hair and grinning, "Before I came to this dump, girls would come to me, others would bow down before me, I had a very active lifestyle…I am after all, "The Genius" of Einstein Institute."
"The genius who can't read ruined language," Maki retorted.
"I told you, nobody can!"
The girl snorted and finished the remaining bacon before gulping down the coffee.
"Hey wash your own plate!" I protested.
Maki stared at the dirty plate in disdain.
"Why should I?" she asked.
"It's common sense, honestly, didn't your parents teach you anything!"
A strange expression passed through Maki's face. For a moment there I thought I saw pain in Maki's eyes. However, that was replaced with a placid, calm expression she always had.
"It's proper manners to wash up after yourself after you eat."
"I don't want to…that's finale," she told me, leaving the dirty plate and utensils on the table and I snapped at her.
"Wash it you little brat!"
"Why should I! I wasn't the one that made breakfast!" she snapped back.
Richard squawked in disdain, fluttering around us, protesting.
"Shut up you grey owl!" I shouted at it.
"Don't scold Richard you big buffoon!" Maki shouted at me, her voice sounding like a little girl's for the very first time.
"Are you a little kid?"
"Maybe I am!" Maki retorted.
"And we've arrive, the little kids!" a voice sounded from the entrance. Maki pulled me behind her, surprised by the sudden intrusion.
"An enemy?" I hissed.
We turned and found ourselves facing Joseph. The boy was smiling.
"Hello Maki and John," he greeted, "How are you two love birds doing?"
"How many times must I tell you, we're not a couple!" I yelled at him.
The boy laughed.
Honestly, the boy was a nightmare to deal with once you got to know him. He seemed to like Maki a lot, often stopping by during his free time. I've seen him more than enough this week to know that he has a huge crush on Maki.
"Who did you bring with you Joseph?" Maki asked. I then noticed the little boy behind Joseph. He had dark brown skin and black short curly hair. His eyes were chestnut brown and he gripped onto Joseph, hiding behind him.
"A boy from the Uri states…" I whispered in amazement. I never thought I would see one in my lifetime. They were really rare, often brought into the country by slave traffickers. However, since the government had placed a ban on that 30 years ago, the slave trade had ceased to exist. The majority of the Uri citizens were sent back home…well, some still stayed and then there were others like this boy…illegal immigrants.
"His name is Raphael; he is 10 years old… I found him crying in Crookback Alley this morning so I brought him here." Joseph said, introducing the young boy.
"Hmm…" Maki answered, "So?"
"Err…I thought maybe you could help?" Joseph asked, laughing nervously.
Maki glared at the small black boy and snorted. "This is a detective office not a day care centre…I suggest you bring him-"
I silenced her by pushing her away. I walked towards the little boy who gripped onto Joseph's ragged clothes, trembling slightly.
"Don't worry," I coaxed him, smiling. The boy stared at me; there were tears in his eyes and bruises all over his skin. I frowned. What sort of barbaric human could have done this to a child? "I won't hurt you."
"…all of you say the same things…" the boy spoke, his voice soft and sort of high pitched. I shook my head and smiled, reaching out to him.
"My name is John Brown, a student of Einstein Institute, you have my word, I would not hurt you."
"…Joseph…" the boy whispered looking at the older boy who nodded. Raphael then slowly but surely reached out to my hand and took it. I was surprised at how small his hand was compared to mine. He was shivering, afraid of me. I led him to the couch and asked him to sit.
"Would you like tea or coffee…hmm or milk?"
Raphael looked at me in surprise.
"You…You'll give me drinks?" he asked.
"Aye yes, we're in a democratic city now."
"Demo…democratic?" Raphael asked, his innocent voice making me smile.
Maki watches all this with a frown.
"Go on, you have a customer," I told her, pushing her to the couch opposite Raphael.
"I don't…stop…dammit John!" she muttered.
She finally sat on the couch and she glared at Raphael. Raphael shrank back.
Oh boy…this was going to be tough. From the looks of it…Maki didn't seem to like children a lot.
"Joseph could you fetch us some milk?" I asked. The boy nodded and went towards the kitchen counter.
"So?" I asked Raphael whom looked up, "Why were you crying in that alley?"
Raphael's lips begun to quiver and he stared at his hands. "I…I lost my master's cat."
"You're masters?" Maki sounded beside me. There was an odd tone in her voice.
"Yes my master's…every morning I am supposed to bring Mr Tabby out for his daily walks…through St. George Market and then back to Kraken's street."
"Kraken street…huh…" I muttered.
Raphael nodded. He fiddled with his thumbs.
Kraken Street, a classy place made of bronze and gold. With tall mansions that stood apart from each other, Kraken Street was where the rich and influential lived. Figures; that such a place would keep a slave or two.
"Who is your master boy?" Maki asked. Her voice sharp and harsh.
The boy flinched at Maki's voice. Maki frowned and looked away.
"Let me handle the talking you idiot," I whispered to Maki whom stepped on my feet and looked away. I winced. Honestly, what was wrong with this girl?
Rather than not liking children…she seemed…awkward.
"Who is your master, Raphael?" I asked the boy gently. Raphael struggled with himself before spitting out the man's name. His voice was soft and filled with fear; I felt my blood grow cold.
"Mr Carl Watson," he whispered.
"Oh…" I muttered.
"Hmm…where have I heard that name before?" Maki whispered into my ear. I turned and found her smirking. I felt like slapping her face. I placed a hand in between my forehead and pressed it there.
"So, Raphael where did you lose this cat?"
The boy hesitated and he fidgeted some more.
"Erm…around Swan Lake…no…I mean…St. George Market…in between…yeah…"
"You're not clear about it then?" I asked.
Raphael looked at me and nodded. "I…I can't go home now…I…"
I stared at the bruises on his skin and felt my hands clenching into fist. "Don't worry Raphael…we would find the cat," I told him.
"Huh? We would?" Maki retorted.
Raphael's eyes widened and he looked like he was about to cry. He bit his lower lip and my heart clenched. This boy obviously needs help…I can't leave him like this.
"Of course we would, didn't you see those bruises!" I seethed.
"Since when did this become your office?"
"Well…I'm finding the cat no matter what and if Sarah finds out that I left this place unattended…I wonder what would happen."
Maki glanced at me, a sly smirk entering her lips.
"Not bad John, you have some guts there…trying to threaten me."
"You coming or not?"
Maki glanced at me then at the boy. She shrugged.
"I have to; I'm your bodyguard after all."
"Good," I muttered, "Finally some action in this damm place."
"Wait!" Joseph called out arriving back from the kitchen with a tray filled with milk and cookies.
"Before you leave, you'll need energy for the search."
"Thank you Joseph." I told the boy who smiled. Raphael stared at the milk and then the cookies. He was hesitant, and bit his lower lip when I gave him the bottle of milk.
Maki stared at the boy and she rubbed the back of her head. A look of annoyance passed her face, I noticed this and frowned.
"Just take it boy," she said, pushing the bottle of milk towards the boy, a sly smile appeared on her lips, "Unless you feel guilty?"
The boy gulped and I smacked Maki with a hand.
"What are you doing!" I snapped.
Maki gave me a death glare, she looked like she was about to say something, but held herself back.
"AH AH!" she exploded, scaring Richard and Joseph.
"What is wrong with you?" I shouted at her.
Maki turned to face me, grabbing her tie and throwing me my hat and staff.
"Nothing…this is just a waste of time, that's all."
"What do you mean by that?" I asked frowning. Raphael bit through the cookie, his hands clenched tightly at his side. Maki glanced at him and pulled her tie over her neck.
"Just a waste of time…really."
Robots rumbled passed up. The sweet scent of donuts waffled through the air. I turned and bumped into a Screwdriver whom bowed in apology before moving passed. The air was thick with the scent of oil and dirt. The river beside St. George Market lapped at its edges. The clanks, the noise, the fumes…
"It's great to be out again!" I exclaimed, scaring a few children whom were playing beside the make shift tents.
"Aye, aye, try to keep a low profile, please," Maki told me, pulling my two hands down. I pouted, pulling my hat down and walking along the wet cobbled streets with my staff.
"An apple for you sir?" a Screwdriver came by, opening his suit. In it all sorts of apples laid lined up. He had a seedy face, with a crooked jaw and yellow teeth. He was reed thin and there wasn't any hair on his head. He glanced at me with sly beady eyes.
"No thanks," I said, holding out my staff to reject him.
The Screwdriver muttered something under his breath, pulled his jacket close and walked off.
Raphael whom had been clutching onto my black jacket shrank back in fear of the Screwdriver.
"Ah, be careful," I told him, lifting him up gently with both hands. I pulled him away from an oil puddle. Raphael blushed in embarrassment.
"You are kind Mr Brown," he told me.
Maki snorted behind me.
"You have a problem with that Ms Nishimura?"
"Nope, not at all," Maki told me.
Joseph who was walking beside her gave a soft chuckle. Richard the owl sat perched on her shoulder, cooing at the passing citizens that walked around us.
"She's scary," Raphael muttered to me and I chuckled. Even children thought of Maki as a sort of freak.
I glanced at her. Well, with that giant grey owl sitting on her shoulder and her weird dressing sense…she did seem like a sort of freak. I remembered the argument I had with her this morning and frowned.
"Stupid woman," I muttered.
We walked through the crowds, passed giant women with giant water pots on their heads. Pass white tents selling illegal mechanical parts and pass robots that were made with illegal parts. Soon we arrived at a series of derelict shop houses. Joseph marched in front of us then pointed to a space in between two buildings. A dark gloomy alley with no light at all.
"This is where I found him," he told us. Raphael nodded.
"How did you end up in there?" I asked.
Raphael took in a deep quivering breath before speaking.
"I was chasing the cat…it ran away…erm…somewhere and I thought it would have run into an alley or some sort."
"Why this alley?" Maki spoke suddenly, turning to face Raphael, "I mean there are lots of other alleys around here, why did you run into this one?"
Raphael faced the ground, his lips quivering.
"Raphael?" I whispered.
"Stop that you're scaring the poor kid!" I exclaimed nudging her.
"You're a little bit dense aren't you dear John?" she told me, a hint of annoyance in her voice.
"You're a little bit harsh aren't you, dear Maki," I retorted.
"Aye, aye, anyway…you guys go on without me, I'm exploring this alley."
"Why?" Raphael spoke suddenly, his face ash white.
"Because your precious cat might be in here," she said.
"No…it's not in there, I couldn't find Mr Tabby in there!" Raphael exclaimed.
I frowned clutching the boy shoulders. He was clearly distress. I turned to Maki and signalled for her to move out of the alley.
"What…you can't be serious, I'm just going to explore the-"
"He doesn't want you too; don't you respect your customer's decisions?"
"My customer!" Maki spluttered. "Since when was he my customer!"
"He is your customer!" I whispered harshly.
There was a tense swelling silence as Maki glared at me, I glared back, refusing to lose to those fierce eyes of hers.
"Now, now," Joseph spoke, smiling nervously, clapping his hands together. "Let's move on shall we, we won't be able to find the cat at this rate."
"What fucking ca-"Maki paused in mid-sentence and she sighed.
Raphael looked like he was going to cry. Maki had noticed this and a strange expression was passing through her face.
"Ah, alright, fine…" Maki muttered. She scowled as she walked away from the alley hands in her pocket.
"You're weird, you know that," I called out to her. She turned and stuck out a middle finger. I smiled despite myself. Raphael looked relief. Joseph heaved a sigh.
Richard the owl was no longer sitting on Maki's shoulder.
We made our way down the road leading towards Miko Grand Park. Raphael had told us that was the last place he had seen the cat. The boy was staring at the road as we walked along the pavement. Business man in suits and brief cases walked passed us in a hurried place, heading towards the Big Ben. Automated steam cars passed us along the roads, spewing out black steam along the way. I coughed as a car's exhaust burst suddenly.
"Is something the matter, Raphael?" I asked the boy when I noticed his pained expression.
The boy looked at me and he shook his head.
"Uh-huh?" I muttered.
The boy gripped on tighter to my jacket and I couldn't help but stare at the bruise on his arms. Mr Carl Watson was his master. I shivered. It couldn't be right…
The head teacher of Einstein Institute…you couldn't have sunk so low could you…
"Erm…Raphael…I'm sorry to ask…but…why are you in North Bound?"
"My mother sold me to strange men," Raphael replied almost instantly. "They placed me on a boat and before I knew it I was in North Bound."
"Oh-ho, interesting," Maki replied.
"You," I said, "Shut up!"
"Did they sell you?" Maki asked. The boy bit his lip and he shook his head.
"I do not know what happened…I was too young…but I think they sold me…it was a cold dark place underground. There were strange men everywhere…we were rounded up onto a stage…I don't know…"
"So you've been here…most of your life?" I muttered.
"Yes, my master is Mr Carl Watson," Raphael said his name with caution. "I must not anger master…I…"
"How ironic isn't it dear John," Maki told me. "An Einstein Institute student helping out a slave of an Einstein Institute teacher."
"Now, now," Joseph said interrupting. "Stop picking a fight with each other, it's embarrassing, you two sound like a couple of love birds quarrelling with each other."
I blushed when I realize the stares we were getting. Maki punched Joseph on the shoulder and he laughed.
"Hey you guys wait up!" a voice called out from behind us. We turned and to our surprise found a Grand Guard approaching us. Panic gripped me and I turned to Maki. She was the main suspect for Sally's case…if anything happens…then…
"Relax," Maki whispered to me, "Sarah has dealt with them."
I heaved a sigh of relief. Having a duchess for a friend can prove helpful sometimes.
"What do you want?" I asked politely.
The Grand Guard looked at us then at Raphael a frown appeared on his face.
"His…his not a slave is he?" he asked pointing to the boy from Uri.
"No, I came here to visit a distant relative," Raphael answered almost immediately.
"Did you practi-"Maki was silenced by Joseph who placed a hand over her mouth.
"Practice?" the Grand Guard asked, suspicion crossing over his eyes. He glanced at Maki and his jaw dropped, a blush crossed his face and I frowned.
Dammit Maki, couldn't you read the situation. Of course Raphael practiced his lie…he couldn't go around telling people his origins could he. If he did, he would be in deep trouble. He wouldn't even be allowed to go back home. Even I wished to help him. I wished to take him away from his master…but that would just complicate matters.
I sighed in annoyance.
"Yes, he is my cousin," I told the Grand Guard who look us over before smiling.
"Well I believe you for now…however I would still need to ask you a few questions."
"Eh yes," he said.
"May I inquire your name?" I asked the young Grand Guard. He had short fluffy black hair and pale skin. With brown chestnut eyes and a slightly chubby face, he looked like an innocent young man, nothing like a Grand Guard. His uniform was neat and proper. A gun hung from his waist, a notepad and pen on his hand. For some reason, this guy lacked aura.
"My name is Ken Woods, I am 18 years old, and I joined the Grand Guard 2 years ago." He pulled a badge from his pocket.
"Ah, a trainee," I said.
"Well technically yes," he said.
"Ken Woods?" Maki asked.
The guard looked at her before blushing. "Yes."
"So what is your question Mr Woods?" I asked him, feeling slightly irritated for an unknown reason.
"Oh yes…" he said.
"There had been accident 3 hours ago," he told us, "Around here, a car ran over something… see that blood stain over there…"
Ken pointed towards the cobbled roads. A car passes through and then we saw it. A small puddle of blood collected at the side of the road. I winced when I saw it.
"We've concluded that somebody has been hit…but for some reason there is no body. I would like to ask you, have you witness anything strange recently?"
Apart from three kidnappers trying to kidnap me to Poor City a week ago and this strange red headed girl that is standing beside me…nope.
"No, I'm sorry."
Ken frowned and then he pointed at Raphael.
"You're cousin, he doesn't look too good."
I turned and sure enough Raphael had gone completely pale.
"What's wrong Raphael?" Joseph asked, kneeling in front of the little boy. The boy's lips quivered and tears ran down his eyes.
"Hey, hey, don't cry," Ken said, flustered, "I was only asking a question."
He fished into his pockets and pulled out a sweet, handing it to Raphael whom shook his head.
"I…I don't deserve such kindness." He cried. "You gave me milk…you offered me help…and yet I …"
"You?" Ken, Joseph and I asked, confused.
Maki snorted. "Honestly, if you guys had listened to me from the start, we wouldn't have gone on this ridiculous hunt."
She pulled Raphael away from our grasps and kneeled before him. Raphael flinched, sobbing even more.
"Say you're sorry," she told him.
"Shh, you meddling brown," she told me and I gasped.
Raphael sobbed harder before he wailed.
"I'm sorry!" he exclaimed.
"Then it's ok," she told him and patted his head. Raphael opened his wet eyes and stared at her. Maki smiled a little, it was so faint that I almost missed it. I felt my heart skipped a beat. The smile…it was somewhat charming…somewhat kind…somewhat genuine…did I see it wrongly? I turned and found that Joseph and Ken were both blushing too.
"I know what happened," she told the boy, stroking his head. "All you needed to do was to tell me."
"But…I can't…master would…"
"Courage," Maki whispered her voice soft all a sudden, "This is the first step you must take…and I'll help you."
Raphael glanced at her then at me. I looked at Maki, surprised. Since when…was she so…
"Yep, she will," Joseph said without hesitation.
I frowned and then realized Ken was standing beside us.
"Master?" Ken asked.
"Yes," Maki replied, standing up, her eyes hard and cold. "This boy is a slave…but his not our slave, his Mr Carl Watson's slave. I guess you might want to check up on him."
"Then what is he doing with you!" he cried out, shrinking back from us.
Maki glanced at him and smirked.
"We're finding a cat, a dead one that is."
"Pheet!" Maki made a strange high pitch sound by whistling. We were back at the alley where Joseph found Raphael. Ken was with us. He was uncomfortable, his uniform made him stand out amongst the unlawful St. George market.
Richard the owl emerged from the alley. The grey owl squawked when it saw Maki.
"Good to see you again Richard!" Maki called out. The owl was carrying something in its talons. It was a small object wrapped in a white torn cloth. There was an ominous feeling in my heart. Raphael was beside Maki, clutching her hand tightly.
"You don't say…" I whispered as Richard dropped the white torn piece of cloth on the ground.
"I'm sorry," Raphael whispered. The cloth rolled open and we gave a gasped. Maki's expression was grim.
Mr Tabby lay sprawled on the ground, blood leaking from its wound, tongue sticking out, and its fur matted with blood. It was clearly dead.
"As I suspected."
"He got hit by a car," Raphael confessed, "I was careless…I didn't pay close attention to him…and now his dead."
The boy broke down crying. "I'm sorry Mr Tabby."
I felt sorry for the boy and the cat. My blood ran cold when I thought of what Mr Carl Watson would do to Raphael if he knew of this.
"How did you know Maki…?" Joseph asked a mixture of amazement and fear in his voice. Maki turned her eyes cold and hard, a strange sly glint in them.
"The blood stain on the road confirmed my suspicions." She answered "And…"
"He was lying," She said, pointing to Raphael, "He couldn't look us in the eye, and he couldn't even tell us where he lost the cat. He was crying wasn't he," she continued.
"Now why would a 10 year old boy cry at such a place?"
We looked at her and then at Raphael who was shifting uncomfortably.
"…Now what?" I asked, breaking the silence. I glanced at Ken who was rubbing his head.
"He might be sent to jail…he is an illegal immigrant…we don't have the sources to prove that Mr Carl Watson bought him." Ken replied truthfully.
Maki snorted and Raphael gripped onto her fearfully.
"This is why I hate the Grand Guards!" she exclaimed.
"What?" Ken replied stunned by her reaction.
"Rules, rules and more rules, use your brain Mr Ken Woods."
"But rules are-"
"Yes rules keep orders, but Mr Woods," Maki said, "Some rules are meant to be broken!"
"But I can't I'm a grand guard, I have my duties."
Maki walked towards him and lean forward. "You are not some Grand Guard now," she told him, Ken blushed. "You're Mr Ken Woods…am I right."
Something clicked and I smiled.
"Yes," I said, approaching Ken and taking his hand, "Please I beg you not as a citizen but a man seeking justice."
Joseph smiled and took Ken's hand. "Please…we will treat Raphael like a brother…"
"Sarah would give him citizenship," Maki said.
My jaw dropped and Ken's eyes widened.
"Don't mention her you idiot! Now everybody would know who I am!"
"You! You're the-"Ken whispered, pointing at the both of us.
"Yes," Maki said, "A detective and a mad scientist."
36 hours later…
"How are you going to pay for this?" Mr Carl Watson roared at us. He banged his hands onto the table. The fat man glared at me and Maki, then at the owl.
"My Tabby is dead because you're owl killed it! How are you going to pay for this?"
"Mr Watson, please, calm down," I told him.
"John Brown I never imagined you to be involved in such an atrocity!" he shouted, his voice echoing throughout the apartment. Maki took up the cup from the coffee table and sipped from it.
I glared at the man and gripped my hands. No, no, keep your cool John Brown.
"How dare you kill my cat! I will make sure the school board sees to this!"
"The school board!" I snapped, snorting, before sitting beside Maki.
"I give up," I told her. Maki smirked, slamming the cup on the table and clicking her fingers.
"What?" Mr Watson asked, alarmed.
"Well Mr Flabby, we know who you are and what you're doing behind the scenes, I'm actually pretty impressed." Maki replied.
"Mr Flabby!" he spluttered. Mr Carl Watson raised his eye brown in anger.
"Yes, Mr Flabby, a suitable name am I right, John?"
"You're asking me?" I asked.
"Well, it suits him very well,"
"What in heaven's name! Where are your manners!" he shouted.
Maki pointed at him and from her pockets pulled out a sheet of paper.
Ken emerged from his hiding place at this point, wearing a Grand Guard uniform, a smug expression on his face.
Mr Carl Watson's eyes widened.
"Joseph, bring out the VIP." Maki shouted.
"Ok!" Joseph shouted and they emerged from behind the kitchen counter. Raphael stood in front of Joseph, a smile on his face.
"RAPHAEL!" Mr Carl Watson roared, standing up. The boy shrank back and I stood up, ready to protect him.
"Sit down!" Maki replied, pushing the coffee table towards the man. It slammed into his knees and he cried out, falling back into the couch. Ken reached out and held onto the man.
"You the lowest of filth, shall sign your name on this contract. This contract would terminate your position at the Einstein Institute and would allow Raphael to gain freedom."
"What! I don't agree to this!"
Maki grinned, she leaned over and took out a small knife from her pockets. That knife! It was the same knife that had stabbed Thomas.
"I have my ways Mr Flabby," she told the man, whispering into his ear. "And I do say…they're not very pretty."
Mr Watson glared at us then at Raphael.
"I'll kill you, I'll find you and kill you!" he shouted.
He screamed as a knife went through his shoulder. I gasped and Joseph leapt forward and held onto Maki's hand.
"Don't fuck with me old man," she shouted. Her voice was filled with so much anger and hatred, I winced. Ken was looking at her as if she had lost her mind. There was a tense deep silence…then…
"I will fucking kill you if you do so!"
Raphael glanced at Maki. His eyes filled with admiration.
The man looked up, clutching his shoulder in pain, glaring at us in fear.
"Sign the form!" she shouted.
"I think it's best to do what she says," Joseph said, smiling.
"Aren't you going to do anything!" the man cried out, turning to Ken who stood behind him.
"You lowly being," I spat at the man, anger taking a hold of me. "I can't believe you work at Einstein Institute…you are a disgrace!"
"You could be sentence to death Mr Watson," Ken spoke next, he was smiling, "I think losing your job and slave would be a better option wouldn't it?"
The man looked at the ground, knife sticking into his shoulder. He bangs the table and roared in frustration. Finally, he picked up the pen and begun to sign his name on the piece of paper. His hands were quivering.
It was done and he stood up.
"I'll escort you home, Mr Watson," Ken said. The man looked at us and glanced back at Raphael, there were tears of anger in his eyes.
"I'll be back!" he shouted. "And you'll all be sorry!"
"No you'll be sorry!" Raphael shouted. The little boy's voice shocked us all. Maki grinned, taking a hold of the boy and rubbing his head. The boy smiled.
Mr Carl Watson snorted before looking away. He followed Ken out of the door.
Ken gave us a thumb up before exiting the office. I cried out a warning. There was a loud crash as they fell three meters down. Ken and Mr Watson cursed.
"Who the hell builds an office in the middle of a high wall?" Mr Watson screamed.
Joseph looked at me, then at Raphael.
"Me, I guess," Maki shrugged and we burst out laughing.
"I brought milk today," Joseph shouted, coming in through the entrance by jumping on the barrels. He leapt into the office and bumped into an excited Raphael who had been reading a book about robots. Maki had bought it for him, arriving back in the evening with a shopping bag in her hands.
I smiled, glancing up from my book. Maki sat by her oak wood table, resting her head against it, snoring away.
"Hey Maki…Maki milk!" Raphael shouted, pushing Maki who groaned, sitting up.
She looked at us and fell back on the table. "Leave me alone…" she moaned.
Raphael frowned and I sighed, standing up, kicking her.
"Dammit, John!" she shouted.
"Get up idiot," I told her, pointing at Raphael who was staring at her. For some reason, Maki turned away.
"Does she dislike me?" Raphael asked his enthusiasm deflating.
"Wait," I whispered.
Sure enough, Maki's hand was stretched towards Raphael; she wasn't looking at him though.
"G…give me the milk," she said.
Raphael grinned and I laughed.
"Jeez…couldn't you be more honest," I muttered.