Time: 10:30 PM
Location: Vermillion Shipyard, North Vancouver, British Columbia
The light of the full moon illuminated a lowly shipyard, and the myriad of shipping containers of varying colors that were stacked on top of one another forming large mountains of metal.
"And so, James hastily arrived home. Darting out of his car, like a spiny-tailed iguana that was high on speed, running at Mach 2" spoke a British narrator of a television show that was being watched by Caston, a man in a black trench coat with short black unkempt hair who was currently crouched behind a red freight container. His hands wrapped around his phone, as he eagerly watched the contents of the television show episode unfold right before his eyes.
'The writing in this show is amazing. 'Like a spiny-tailed iguana that was high on speed, running at Mach 2'? Who comes up with this stuff, its genius!' thought Caston, with his eyes glued to the screen. Watching a man in a light grey hoodie, and jeans step out of a rundown minivan, and head over to a semi-detached brick house.
"He rushed into his house, and slammed the door behind him rather loudly" said the narrator, as the phone screen showed James opening the door to the house, stepping in, and lightly slamming the door behind him.
'Oh my god, he lightly slammed the door!' thought Caston, as he gasped and leaned in closer to the screen. 'Things are about to get INTENSE!' thought Caston, as the screen showed James scanning his surroundings in a rush while shouting "Avan! Where are you?!" Running down the staircase in the far left corner of the living room, was a lightly tanned man in a red shirt and cotton pants. "I was upstairs, what's going on…" said Avan, as he stopped at the bottom of the stairs and looked at James's face.
"Avan looked on with ceaseless terror the likes of which the known multiverse had never seen, as James had a face that conveyed a sensation of dread that Avan could not only see but also feel. Permeating through the air, and through every fiber of his being" said the narrator, as the phone screen showed James peering into Avan's eyes, and saying "…the ex is coming…"
'Dear…god…' thought Caston, as he felt a shock of synapses course throughout every neuron in his body, starting from the head and ending at his toes. The phone screen displayed Avan swallowing his own spit, as a worried expression came over his face. "Avan swallowed his own spit, for he had just heard words that make entire nations tremble in fear. Words that would shatter entire worlds at the mere thought of being uttered. Words that would've made reality itself simply throw its collective hands in the air and say that it had given up trying to exist" said the narrator, as Caston bounced in place with excitement as he leaned in closer to his phone's screen.
"Loser says what?" asked a voice that popped up next to him, scaring Caston in the process. "What?!" exclaimed Caston, as he jumped back, while still crouched, and nearly dropped his phone. Firmly securing his phone in his hands, Caston faced the source of the voice, Zach, a man with short red hair donning a black trench coat who was standing next to him, leaning down to meet Caston at eye level with a deceptive smile.
Zach slyly pointed at Caston, and said "loser". Caston raised a brow, and asked "huh?" Zach straightened himself up, and said "ah, never mind". Burying his hands inside his jacket pockets. "Anyways, I've been talking with Dr. Pariah for a bit and we've been able to figure out a way to get SOI Reilah to cooperate with us" said Zach, as Caston got up onto his feet. "Great, now we can finally make some progress with our assignment" said Caston, as he dusted himself off. "So what's the plan?" asked Caston obliviously, as Zach smirked in response.
"The plan's simple…" said Zach, as his smirk grew into a grin as wide as his face. All the while an uneasy sensation of dread overcame Caston, as Zach said "one of us is going to be used as a bargaining chip to get her to cooperate, through the use of this". Zach pulled out from one of his jacket pockets, a small glass bottle of blue liquid and shook it in front of Caston's face. "Reproductive pheromones that were made in a lab, that will make whoever is exposed to them appear as Reilah's mate" said Zach.
Caston vigorously shook his head sideways, and said "no way. Not doing it". Zach stopped his bottle shaking, and cocked his head to the side while pulling the bottle away from Caston's face. "Nobody said you'd be the one to have to do it" said Zach, as Caston raised his hands and said "nobody said that, but every time when you hatch a plan where one of us has to become bait, I'm the one that ends up with the short end of the stick". "What stick?" asked Zach, as Caston answered "it's a metaphorical stick that doesn't exist, because I just made it up". Caston swiped his hands to the side, and said "either way. I'm not doing it, and there's nothing you can say that can convince me otherwise". Zach relaxed his shoulders, as he leaned back a bit and asked coyly "not even if we were going to determine who'll take the pheromones through a game of rock, paper, and scissors?"
"Nope" said Caston, as Zach leaned in a little and said "but it's a game of chance". "All of your prior 'games of chance' all ended with me being bait, and besides…the last time I was bait, I was stuck inside of an extradimensional toaster for a week". Caston got up in Zach's face, as he stood on his tippy toes to try and appear taller than Zach. "FOR A WEEK! And do you know what's even worse?! I had to become a part of a rebellion of badly burnt sentient toast people lead by a sentient waffle man in order to avoid becoming shoved into a toaster to become, and I quote their head priest of Cerevissiae, 'to become one with the cosmic toast'" exclaimed Caston, as he lightly fell back onto his feet and took a step back.
"On the plus side though, you at least got one delicious loaf of bread out of it" said Zach, as he pulled one of his hands out of his jackets pockets and shot Caston a finger gun. "It was not worth dying over. And to literal bread wielding knives, guns, and nuclear warheads no less!" replied Caston, as he nodded his head sideways and crossed his arms across his chest. "So no, I'm not taking those pheromones" said Caston, as Zach nodded.
"So, you're protesting then?" asked Zach, as Caston gave one single, exaggerated nod. "Yes" replied Caston, as Zach nodded and said "well, good thing I slipped them in to the coffee that I brought us this morning". "Yea, so you can take your pheromones and…wait…what?!" exclaimed Caston, as Zach smirked while nodding. "But…then…what about the bottle?" asked Caston worriedly, as Zach pulled said bottle out and said while pointing at it "oh this thing?"
Caston slowly nodded, as Zach shrugged and said "it's just some blue colored water". After which he chucked the bottle at a nearby shipping container, as the bottle broke and the blue liquid stained the containers exterior. "See?" said Zach, as he pointed to the area where he had chucked the bottle at.
Caston looked at Zach with a dumbfounded expression on his face, as Zach casually walked over to him and placed both hands on his shoulders. "Alright, so now that I got that out of the way. Let's get this assignment out of the way so that we can also get out of the way" said Zach, as he pushed Caston over to a nearby red shipping container. Stopping right at its two large set of doors which were currently closed.
Zach let go of Caston, and walked up beside him while dusting off his hands and placing them on his hips. Looking at the closed doors of the freight container, as Caston turned to face him and said "I hate you". Zach nodded, and said "Oh, I love you too, and besides you can consider this a favor". "A favor?" asked Caston, as Zach nodded and said "you've been striking out in your love life for a while. I mean, it went from trying to ask out that girl from the Archeological Department to trying out pickup lines on a coffee machine". Zach turned to face Caston, and said "which you somehow also messed up, because it printed on every cup of coffee you got from it to stop hitting on it, and that it thought you were lame. Which is uh…very impressive, to say the least".
"Okay, first of all…that coffee machine's rude, and second of all, I don't need help in my love life from you of all people, Mr. I've never been on a date since elementary school. Besides, that thing's an SOI. It's hardly someone you can 'date'" said Caston, as he pointed at the freight container. Zach clutched his heart, and acted like he was in pain. "Ouch, that's got to hurt" said Zach, as Caston asked "the 'Mr. I've never been on a date since elementary school?'" "What? No, I mean calling Reilah 'undatable'. I'll have you know, that according to Dr. Pariah. Reilah has human level intelligence, is capable of communicating through sign language, and is in desperate need of a mate" said Zach, as he pointed to the red shipping container. "She's practically waiting for you, sign and everything" said Zach, as Caston sighed and waved him off. "Whatever, let's just get this over with" said Caston, mildly frustrated as Zach shrugged and walked over to open the shipping container doors.
The doors to the shipping container opened with two hefty pulls, and the duo bare witnessed what the interior of this freight container looked like. Covered entirely in some kind of silk like substance, painting the interior in a misty white. "So, where is she?" asked Caston as he poked his head inside and looked around. His question being answered by a four legged reptilian creature that jumped down from the ceiling, scaring Caston as he jumped back in fear. "Holy mother of 682" exclaimed Caston, as the eyeless creature, now on the ground and on all fours, hissed at Caston and Zach. Showcasing her many rows of teeth, each one varying in size. "Okay, here's the deal" said Zach, as the creature began sniffing as though there was a scent of some sort in the air. "You need a mate, really badly. And Dr. Pariah want's you transported back to a proper containment area, but in order to do that, you need to comply with us, so here" said Zach, as he pointed at Caston who was looking at a hastily put together wooden sign that was stuck on the ceiling, facing him. 'You've got to be kidding me…' thought Caston, as Zach noticed the sign and thought 'Oh wow…'
The sign was constructed out of wood, and held together by some white viscous substance that sent a guttural shiver of disgust down Caston's spine. While the words "mate", "need", "want", and "now" were clawed onto the wood, in various sizes, being capitalized in some instances, and lower case in others.
After a minute had passed the creature stopped sniffing the air, and faced Caston. "Uh…hello?" said Caston nervously, as the creature no longer bared her teeth. "He's single, and he's ready to mingle" said Zach with a smirk while thinking 'and I know you WANT him…heh…' All the while Caston shot Zach an angry glare which Zach responded to with a mischievous grin. 'I hate you…' thought Caston, he turned his attention to the 6 foot reptilian that was cocking her head to the side while directly facing him. He gulped, and gave her a slow wave as he nervously said "So…" When Reilah suddenly snapped her mouth open, and shot out her tongue like a harpoon. Aimed at Caston, as Caston closed his eyes, when the sound of a gunshot forced his eyes open. "What the…" he said, as he glanced at his surroundings and found that he was being held at gun point by Zach, as Reilah's tongue retreated back into her mouth as she faced Zach while growling angrily.
"Now then, if you cooperate with us. You can have your mate, but if you don't" said Zach, as he cocked his gun and pointed it at Caston's head. "Then I'll put one in his head, and you'll lose whatever chance you had at finding happiness through a lifelong companion" said Zach, as Reilah bared her teeth in response "So what's it going to be, Reilah? Your mate, or your cooperation?" asked Zach, as Reilah slowly closed her mouth and stopped her growling.
"Nod once for yes, and twice for no" said Zach, as Reilah nodded only once. Zach nodded, and smirked as he said "good. Now put this on". Zach pulled out of one of his internal jacket pockets, a rubber collar and tossed it at Reilah. It landed on the ground in front of her, as she picked it up with her long, elastic tongue, as Zach said "now put that around your neck". She did as she was told, begrudgingly. Showing disdain while doing so. Once the collar was on, Zach pulled out his phone, tapped the screen once as the words 'ANAESTHETIC ACTIVATED' appeared on the screen.
Reilah slowly stumbled around in place, and then collapsed on the ground. Falling chest first on to the ground, unconscious. Zach holstered his gun, as Caston slowly got onto his feet as he calmed his nerves. Zach let out a sigh of relief, and said "threatening to kill the one thing that someone else cares the most in exchange for their cooperation…it never fails". "It's also the only thing you have ever done" said Caston, as Zach looked at him and replied "hey I'm not a one trick pony. I'll have you know I have an entire book of them". "You can't call it a book if you only have one page in it, at that point it's a binder" said Caston, as Zach looked at Caston and said "Hey, Cas?" "Yea?" asked Caston, as Zach pulled out his phone and said "shut up". Caston shrugged, and said "just stating a fact". Zach began to walk away, as he dialed a number on his phone. "Do you have any proof?" asked Zach a little loudly, as Caston replied "tons". "Then I expect them to be presented at my desk by tomorrow morning with the proper citations, and in MLA format" shouted Zach, as Caston shouted back "why MLA?" "Because APA can go kiss my defunct career in medicine in the rear!" shouted Zach in response, as he held his phone to his ear.
'He, and his failed advents in med school' thought Caston, as he walked a little bit closer to Reilah, and observed the reptilian that was currently in a forced deep sleep. 'Huh…she kinda looks peaceful when she's like this' he thought, as he watched her instinctively curl up in such a way so as to have all of her limbs wrap around one another, along with her 4 foot long tail.
Zach tapped Caston on the shoulder, nearly scaring him. "Bejeebus, you almost gave me a heart attack!" exclaimed Caston, as he jumped in place and faced Zach. "What, almost getting harpooned by a reptile monster that wanted get fancy in your pantsy didn't?" asked Zach, as Caston blushed and said "n-no, of course not! We do stuff like this almost every week". "Getting tongue twistered in the nether by a horny lizard creature?" asked Zach, as Caston glared at Zach while blushing. "Zach!" exclaimed Caston, as Zach shrugged and said "what? It's not like I was wrong, and besides. You saw the sign, right? She's DESPERATE for some…" Caston covered Zach's mouth with his hand, and said "don't say it! Don't you dare say it". He removed his hand off of his mouth, as he said "I was going to say that she was desperate for some love. Get your mind out of the gutter". Caston shuddered a little, as he said "I'm just glad that this was all just a one-time thing". "Don't jinx it, if you say something as though it's an absolute, even though it isn't then it will most likely happen" said Zach, as Caston replied "but it's all mostly random chance, it doesn't matter". "Yea, but the universe is a cruel place so count your chickens when they hatch" said Zach, as Caston asked "what does that even mean?" "No idea, but I read it on a fortune cookie once, and the next thing I knew I ended up narrowly avoiding a harrowing accident regarding a revolving door, a block of cheese, and a sock puppet" said Zach, as Caston asked once more "what?" "Story for another time, but the point is" said Zach, as he lightly patted Caston on the shoulder saying "don't jinx it".
"We went in a full circle for that?" asked Caston, as Zach nodded and said "pretty much". "You know, I'd swear, sometimes…it feels like our conversations are being written by a 22 year old in his third year of university with no writing talent whatsoever" said Caston, as Zach blinked and said "that's…oddly specific". "Story of our lives, I guess" replied Caston, as he turned to look at the now sleeping Reilah alongside Zach.
"Anyways, Relocation Team 7, or RTS as I like to call them, are currently on their way here. They said they'll arrive in roughly 1 minute". Caston nodded, and said "got it, and we'll stand guard here until they arrive". "Yup" replied Zach, as Caston turned to look at Reilah.
"You know, seeing her like this, kinda makes me feel bad for being used to manipulate her" said Caston, as Zach nodded and said "same". Caston blinked, and turned to face Zach asking "really?" Zach nodded, and said "yup. Out of all the SOI's, not only is she one of the smartest but also technically the most peaceful". Caston raised a brow, and said "you're joking". Zach nodded sideways, and said "nope. She's one of the only SOI's to have 0 causalities when it comes to researchers, agents, and expendables that had come into contact with her". Caston looked at Reilah, and said "huh. Did not know that".
Time: 9:00 AM
Location: Site 0, Cassiar, Alberta
Underground at a depth of 1,765 kilometers, was a large facility consisting of elevator shafts, hallways, offices, labs, and an employee break room. The elevator doors at one of the myriad of hallways opened, as Zach walked out. Putting his hands inside his pants pockets, as he lazily navigated his way through the many hallways. Walking past people dressed in lab coats, black suits like himself, and people that wore military fatigues.
He cracked a yawn, and thought '3 years of service, and I STILL can't get used to waking up this early…even on Tuesdays'. Turning around the corner at the end of the hallway, he continued walking straight as he scanned the myriad of doors on his left hand side. Stopping when he reached one that had the words 'Dr. Pariah – Research Containment Laboratory' engraved into a silver plaque mounted on the door.
'Time to see, what Caston and doc are up to...' thought Zach, as he rubbed his eyes and opened the door. Walking into a spacious room filled to the brim with computer displays overhead, and desktops hidden away inside of dull metal boxes with green, and red led lights that constantly switched back and forth between the two color options. As Zach walked up to a woman who was at the very front of the room, looking through a large opaque window that made up the entirety of the wall in front of them.
"What's up…doc?" asked Zach, as he let out a soft yawn while walking up next to the woman donning a lab coat.
"Good morning agent Calden!" said Dr. Pariah, as she turned to face the agent with a cheerful smile on her face. Zach blinked, and said "well, you sure seem chipper doctor". "Oh I am extremely. Do you want to know why?" asked the scientist, as Zach shrugged and said "sure, I mean it's not like me saying no would stop you". All the while thinking 'it's not like it ever stopped her in the past'. "Well, you see, before Reilah was relocated to this special holding cell built to contain her nest. I had to figure out a potential candidate for a mate, and was still in the process of running through the numbers. The choice to give the pheromones that were created to your partner was a last minute decision, and one that I was not fully content with. It was meant to be temporary, which meant even more stress on my back, among other things. But, after Reilah was relocated. Despite the attempts of the on site Organized Task Force to introduce a secondary potential mate that would, in my opinion, would have been of a better choice for the role. Reilah refused, and demanded for the previous male, which in this case was your partner. Agent Hendriks" said Dr. Pariah, as she pointed at the glass wall.
Zach nodded absent mindedly, as he looked at the glass wall and said "uh…doc, how come I can't see anything on the other side?" "Oh, that's because of privacy" said Dr. Pariah, as Zach stared at the glass wall. 'Privacy' thought Zach, as the gears in his head began to slowly turn until a lightbulb went off inside his head. "Oh…" said Zach, as he grinned like a cereal killing psychopath with a morbid obsession of grain. 'I'm going to be able to have some fun with this…' thought Zach, as Dr. Pariah looked at Zach and asked "are you alright, agent Calden? You're grinning is starting to border on the very limits of what's biologically possible". "What, oh, yea I'm fine" said Zach, as he stopped grinning and gave the scientist a smile. "Anyways, for privacy reasons I made the glass opaque. I mean…you can see what's going on if you want, but…" said Dr. Pariah a little uneasily, as Zach waved her off and said "I'm good". "Okay, good" replied Dr. Pariah, as Zach asked "so how long would he be preoccupied with his current…'assignment'?" Dr. Pariah nodded, and said "it'll be a while, but you'll probably see him sometime later today". Zach nodded, and said "alright, so is that all me and Caston was needed for or…" Dr. Pariah looked at Zach, and said "that was all". "See ya around doc" said Zach, as he gave her a wave before walking away, leaving the room the way he came.
Zach walked out onto the hallway, and continued to navigate through the myriad of interconnecting hallways until he arrived at a large lounge filled with a table of pastries, and a coffee machine at one corner of the room with all manner of sofas, and chairs strewn about throughout the room. Zach walked over to the coffee machine, and pushed a button on it.
'Greetings agent Calden, is agent Hendriks with you at the moment?' read the words that were printed on the coffee machine's LCD display. "No, he's not. He's…well, a bit preoccupied with something…" said Zach, as he chuckled. 'Preoccupied with what, if I may ask?' read the words that appeared on the LCD display, replacing the previous ones. "I don't think you'd understand, but the gist of it is, is that you won't have to worry about being hit on by him anymore" replied Zach, as the words on the LCD display changed to 'Oh that's good, I was really getting tired of it all. Honestly, how sad is it that a human such as him has to resort to trying to pick up me, a lowly sentient coffee machine? Not to mention his pick up lines are lame, I've heard better ones from a low IQ rock'. 'As opposed to a high IQ rock' thought Zach, as he said "yea, well he's moved onto bigger and better pastures…" Zach blinked, and then laughed. 'Bigger, and better pastures…got to save that one for later use'.
'Alright so, what would you like today?' read the words that appeared on the LCD display, replacing the previous ones. "Give me a good old cup of joe, with 2 teaspoons of sugar and 2 cups of cream" replied Zach, as the words on the LCD display were replaced with 'one cup of Joe Johnson coming right up!' "No, no, not that Joe. I meant coffee" said Zach hurriedly, as the words on the LCD display changed to 'right, coffee, yea that makes a lot more sense. Right away'. Zach breathed out a sigh, as he thought 'almost made another cup out of agent Johnson…man this coffee machine still hasn't gotten used to the notion that Joe is another way of saying coffee'. "You still haven't gotten used to Joe being slang for coffee?" asked Zach, as a Styrofoam cup materialized on the coffee machines drip plate. The words on the LCD display changing to 'what do you want from me? I'm a coffee machine that can get you whatever you want, get off my back man!' "You're being paid to technically 'work' here, you can't be bothered to learn that Joe is slang for coffee?" asked Zach, as the words on the LCD display changed to 'I don't get paid enough for this…' Zach rolled his eyes at the sentient machine's words, as hot light brown liquid poured out of the machine's nozzle and into the cup. Stopping after the cup was filled to the brim. "The fact that you get paid at all, in of itself, should be enough" said Zach, as he picked up the cup off of the drip plate and walked over to an empty sofa and sat down.
Taking a sip from his cup of coffee, as he thought 'walked into the break room, got myself a cup of figuratively-speaking-Joe, and had a pointless conversation with SOI Tea Maker'.
"Agent Calden?" asked a voice that neared Zach from his left, which he turned to face, finding a man in a buttoned up lab coat wearing glasses and holding a mug of coffee in his right hand. "Dr. Light, you on break too?" asked Zach, as the man shrugged and said "more or less". Zach eyed Dr. Light's left arm, or lack there of and asked "so, what happened to lefty?" "Oh that. Well, long story short, it got transported to the dream dimension. So if you see a disembodied hand in your dreams, do NOT attempt to communicate with it" said Dr. Light, as he took a sip from his mug of coffee.
"There are several things wrong with that statement" said Zach, as Dr. Light nodded and said "trust me, just keep that in mind. I've had an email reminder sent out to inform everyone of the situation". Zach's phone beeped in one of his pants pockets, as he pulled it out with one hand and saw a notification for an email that ended up in his inbox. "Just got it" said Zach, as he put his phone away.
"So, how goes things agent Calden?" asked Dr. Light, as Zach shrugged and said "nothing much, just finished up the relocation assignment on SOI Reilah". Dr. Light nodded, as Zach took a sip from his cup of coffee, and said "yes, I heard about that. Pariah is currently running an observational experiment I believe…" 'Oh it's observational alright…' thought Zach, as he smirked while sipping from his cup of coffee.
"How's agent Hendriks?" asked Dr. Light, as Zach replied "he's fine". "Speaking of him, where is he?" asked the scientist, as Zach replied "helping Dr. Pariah with her 'observational experiment'". Dr. Light blinked, and said "…right". Dragging the word out. Zach let out a forced dry cough, and asked "anyways…how are things on your end doc?"
Dr. Light, taking a sip from his mug of coffee looked up as he pondered on the question for a bit before answering with "well, at the moment I'm trying to find some agents to help out with an assignment that I'm spear heading". "What kind of assignment?" asked Zach inquisitively, as Dr. Light asked "are you interested?" Zach shrugged, as he took a sip from his cup of coffee. "Maybe, but I need more details" replied Zach, as Dr. Light nodded and said "right, then follow me".
The two of them left the employee break area, and perused through the hallways once more as Dr. Light led Zach into a room that was similar in design and structure to the one that Dr. Pariah was currently in. The only notable difference being, was that there was a 3D model of DNA hanging from the ceiling. Built out of a 3D molecular model kit.
Zach looked up at the hanging model of DNA, and asked "so I take it that your efforts to sell your molecular model kit to other scientists, and agents failed?" Dr. Light nodded, as he took a sip from his mug and said "yea, they black listed me from selling anything on the premises ever again, after that stunt. Something about being a work place hazard or something". Waving it off, as he let go of his mug of coffee, which began levitating above the ground. Moving through the air in an unnatural manner, and hovering right next to him. Zach eyed the flying mug, and asked while pointing at it "how are you…"
"Oh, the levitating mug. Well, you see, ever since my hand got displaced in the dream dimension. I seemed to have gained a minor form of telekinesis in the after math. I have yet to do some tests to fully see what other effects I might have been affected by, but I'll get to that at a later date" replied Dr. Light, as Zach lightly nodded while taking a sip from his cup of coffee.
'Maybe I should lose a limb in the dream dimension, if it means gaining telekinetic powers. Even if it's minor, I mean imagine all the things I could do with it…' thought Zach, as his mind began to wander.
Caston was walking down the sidewalk, when he spotted a 5 dollar bill on the ground. "Oh, free 5 dollars! This must be my lucky day!" said Caston with a smile, and a bit of pep in his step. He walked over to the 5 dollar bill, and just as he was about to pick it up. It slid away from him. "What the" said Caston, as he stepped forward and reached for it again. Only for it to slide away from him once more, as Caston stood up and blinked. "What?" said Caston, as he walked around the 5 dollar bill, and used his foot to feel if there were any wires attached to it. 'No, there's nothing attached to it…' thought Caston, as he walked over to the bill and reached for it. Only for it to move several inches away from him once more. "Damn it…" said Caston, as he slowly gave chase. Inching forward every couple of steps, as the 5 dollar bill slowly slid away from him each time he tried to grab it.
All the while, on the other side of the road and crouched behind a dumpster, was Zach who watched Caston's struggle. Laughing to himself, as he had his left and only hand inside his one of his pants pockets. 'That's it, keep moving Cas. Keep moving…' thought Zach, as he watched Caston practically run after the 5 dollar bill like a mad man shouting "come back here! You're supposed to be easy money, not difficult!" All the while Zach chuckled like a mad man.
Zach stared off into space, with an evil grin on his face until Dr. Light's constant snapping pulled him out of his thoughts.
"It won't end well, I'll tell you that. Sure, I got some minor telekinesis but there's always the chance that I could've ended up with something far worse. Like a parasitic extradimensional secondary dragon head that reads Journey to the Center of the Earth" said Dr. Light, as he moved closer to Zach.
"All" said Dr. Light, as he moved closer. "The" said Dr. Light, as he moved even closer. "Time" said Dr. Light, as he moved close enough that he was mere inches away from the agent's nose.
Zach stepped back from Dr. Light to get some distance from the scientist, as he waved his hands in front of him. "Alright, I get it…wait…" said Zach, as he pointed at the scientist and asked while raising a brow "…how did you…" Zach waved it off, and said "you know what, never mind. There's probably some kind of bizarre explanation for why you knew that to begin with". "Yes, well the author told me. Or rather he began writing this sentence, and I picked up on it as he typed it on his word processor" replied Dr. Light, as he walked over to a keyboard attached to a dull console with all manner of red and green lights, and began typing away on it. Zach blinked, and shook his head. 'Out of all the researchers that work at Site 0, it's always Dr. Light that's the weird one' thought Zach, as Dr. Light pushed a button that had the word 'Enter' printed on it.
The large monitors overhead turned on, and Dr. Light said "behold!" as he pointed at them. "What exactly am I looking at?" asked Zach, as he looked at what was displayed on the overhead monitors.
"You are currently watching the live video feed from a containment unit from Site 2, of an ancient urn supposedly of Sumerian origin. Bursting with extradimensional energy with high frequency electromagnetic wavelengths" said Dr. Light, as he took a sip from his levitating mug.
"Otherwise known as SOI Urn" said Dr. Light, as he turned to face Zach, who narrowed his eyes at one of the monitors and asked "that's supposed to be an urn?" Dr. Light nodded, and replied "it's hard to tell at the moment, due to the sheer amount of energy it is generating". "Huh" said Zach, as he turned his gaze towards Dr. Light and said in a sarcastic tone "well, I'll give the boys in DOPSN 10 points for creativity". He turned his head back to look at the monitors, thinking 'very creative indeed'. He turned to face Dr. Light, and said "it look's like it's exploding, or about to at least". Zach gave the scientist a confused gesture, raising his shoulders with his arms slightly stretched out to the side. "Should it be doing that?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light nodded his head sideways and said "no, it shouldn't".
Zach buried his arms inside his pants pockets, and asked "then what's wrong with it?"
Dr. Light took a sip from his mug, and said "currently, the two trans-dimensional beings that are known to inhabit the urn, seem to be at odds with each other. Or at least that's what appears to be the cause, as evidenced by the decoded sound bytes that were extracted from the pool of electromagnetic radiation of various frequencies that are being emitted in large quantities".
Zach pointed at one of the monitors, and said "look's like there are two heads coming out of the urn". Dr. Light nodded, and said "the one that's colored red is a goddess, and the one that's colored blue is a god".
Zach turned to faced Dr. Light, and raised a brow. "How'd you know what?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light replied "an educated guess. According to the research notes I had pulled up by the Middle Eastern branch of the Archeological Department on the SOI after conducting an analysis. There was a goddess that was often symbolized by red, and a god that was symbolized by blue. Though, I could be wrong. It is a guess after all".
"And right now, there in a scuffle?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light nodded.
"One that could potentially bring about the end of the world as we know it" said Dr. Light, as he took a sip from his mug.
"Huh, so an average Monday" said Zach, as Dr. Light replied "yup" before taking one long sip from his mug, finishing his coffee and moving the mug to his side with a thought. "Anyways, a task force is being put together to deal with the situation and currently there are vacancy spots for agents to help out with" said Dr. Light, as he turned to face Zach and said "if you and your partner are interested that is".
"Wouldn't there have been agents ALREADY selected for the task force?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light replied "there were, including quite a lot of contingency candidates. However, they all kept falling through localized rips in space time".
"Well, that's random" said Zach, as Dr. Light nodded and said "it was. The situation has since then been dealt with, but we're in need of two agents to help carry out whatever endeavors are necessary". He looked at Zach, and asked "interested?"
"Maybe, but why ask me, and by extension, Caston?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light replied "because I happen to run into you just now. Could've been anyone else, if I ran into them and they weren't busy".
"So just chance then" said Zach, as Dr. Light nodded and said "pretty much".
"How unconventional" commented Zach, as D. Light asked "so, are you interested?"
"Well…" said Zach, as he clasped his hands together and looked at the scientist with an inquisitive look. "What's in it for us?" asked Zach, as Dr. Light asked "outside of the usual payment, and government benefits?" Zach nodded in response, as Dr. Light shrugged and said "I could also give you these tickets to the Broadway musical 'My Life as a Potato'", as he pulled out two tickets out of one of his lab coat's pockets.
Zach blinked, and said "wait, you have tickets for that? I thought they sold out several months ago".
Dr. Light nodded, and said "they were, but I managed to get them through some questionable means". Zach buried his hands in his pockets, and said "ah, so you got them from a shady source".
"What? No, that would've been stupid. I just finagled with the author for them" said Dr. Light, as he let out a mildly frustrated sigh. "That guy is one cheap son of a gun…" muttered the scientist, as Zach blankly stared at Dr. Light for a brief moment before absent mindedly nodding and saying "okay, sure, whatever, we're in".
"Great. Now, normally it's company policy to gain confirmation from both agents but I've never followed company policy so why start now?!" said Dr. Light, as he turned his attention towards the overhead monitors.
"I work in the craziest place in the world, and I love it…" said Zach, as he smirked while looking at the overhead monitors. Watching the draconian heads of red, and blue collide with one another in a violent manner.
'I wonder how many times I have said that by now' thought Zach, as he watched the energetic chaos unfold on the monitors which displayed the explosive pandemonium of red and blue energy from different angles.
Time: 12:45 PM
Location: Site 0A, Cassiar, Alberta
Hovering above the ground, over Site 0 at well over a height of 33,000 feet was a large structure that resembled an upside down cone with windows littering the sides of the airborne facility. Zach peered out from one of the windows, standing in an empty hallway, as he thought 'if someone fell from this height, would they survive long enough to hit land and turn into a puddle of flesh and blood? Or would they burn up in the atmosphere?' When the sound of footsteps nearing towards him pulled him out of his thoughts, as he turned to face the man that approached him.
Zach smirked, and asked "hey Caston, ya wanna make history twice?" Caston walked up to him, and stopped the moment Zach threw that question at him. He said "wait, what do you mean 'make history twice'? I didn't even make it the first time". Zach put his hands inside his pants pockets, as his smirk turned into a devilish grin. "I mean…" said Zach, as he glanced at the ceiling before looking at Caston and saying "…you were the first person to have gotten it 'on' with an SOI…"
Caston stared at Zach, frozen in place, with a shocked expression on his face.
"How the hell did you-" exclaimed Caston, as Zach cut him off saying "Dr. Pariah told me. Well, he told me indirectly but I managed to piece it together well enough".
Caston let out a frustrated groan, as he grabbed his hair and threw his head back as he closed his eyes shut. All the while Zach lightly chuckled, and said in a sarcastic tone "don't worry, I won't tell anyone". Caston's head snapped to Zach's, his eyes darting open and glaring at the man. "I know you won't" said Caston, as he let go of his hair and his hands fell to his side, lifeless. "And that's what I'm afraid of" added Caston, as Zach's grin grew wider. "Smart as always, but honestly, did you really think I wouldn't find out?" asked Zach, as he cocked his head to the side. Caston let out a sigh of defeat, and said "no…I had a feeling you'd figure it out eventually". He walked up next to Zach, and said "just thought it wouldn't happen, the next day".
"Well, if it's any consolation. I already have more than enough dirt on you from previous missions, so there's that" said Zach, as Caston sighed thinking 'of course he does'. "Anyways, now on with more pressing matters" said Zach, as he raised one finger and pointed to the window. "Like jumping out this window!" exclaimed Zach with a smile on his face, as Caston blinked. Looking at the window, then back at Zach, and then back at the window. "What, why?" asked Caston, as he looked at Zach with a confused expression on his face.
"FOR SCIENCE OF COURSE!" shouted Zach at the top of his lungs in an over the top German accent.
"Ah, right…" said Caston calmly, as he nodded in agreement. Only to stop, as realization hit him like a brick laced with magnesium which exploded upon contact with his brain. "Wait, what?" asked Caston with a dumbfounded look on his face as a single beep originated from one of his pants pockets. Caston put one of his hands into the pants pocket the beeping sound had come from, and pulled out his phone. All the while another single beep originated from one of Zach's pants pockets.
Caston logged into his phone, and took a look at the text messages as Zach did the same after pulling out his own phone.
"Task Force U has arrived at the conference room" said Caston, as Zach nodded and said "yup".
"I wonder why it's called 'Task Force U'" questioned Caston, as he pocketed his phone.
"Task Force Urn. The U stands for Urn" answered Zach, as he pocketed his phone. Caston raised a brow, and asked "seriously?" Zach shrugged, and said "you do realize the people we work for, who came up with the name for the task force, also gave the SOI that was an ancient anomalous urn, the designation Urn, right?" Caston nodded, and said "good point".
He spun on his heel, and turned around as he asked "know which way to the conference room?" "Never been here before?" asked Zach, as Caston nodded and said "first time". Zach walked ahead of Caston, as he led the way. Glancing back, and chuckling. "First time for everything eh?" asked Zach with a smirk on his face. "Oh shut up" replied Caston, as he followed Zach around a hallway turning left.
"Should be one of the doors on the left hand side" said Zach, as he skimmed over the various closed doors and their engraved plaques. Stopping at a door that had the words 'Conference Room A1' engraved into a silver plaque mounted on the door.
"Here it is" said Zach, as he put his hand on the door knob. "Oh, I almost forgot" said Zach, as Caston asked "what?" Zach glanced back to face Caston, and replied "congratulations on finally losing your v-card".
Promptly earning a smack to the back of his head from Caston.
'Worth it' thought Zach, as he opened the door and entered the conference room alongside Caston.
The duo entered a medium sized space with a single rectangular table in the center that had people seated on either side of it. However, the presence of one individual made Caston freeze up in place. The words 'oh no' popping into the forefront of his mind, as he spotted the glasses wearing man donning a pristine lab coat, with his one and only arm in one of his coat pockets. The man looked at Caston, and gave him a wave.
"Hello, Dr. Light…" said Caston, as he slowly waved back. Zach leaned over to one of Caston's ears, and whispered "oh, I forgot to tell you. He's the lead researcher assigned to this task force". Caston gave Zach a glare, as the duo walked over to the table. "Yea, you forgot to tell me about THAT important detail…" muttered Caston, as he manoeuvred over to the side and sat opposite of Dr. Light. All the while Zach sat on the same side as Dr. Light.
"Good evening agent Hendriks" spoke a woman in a British accent that sat next to Caston, as he turned to look at her. "You too Assistant Director Dhin" said Caston as he straightened himself up as much as he could, while the woman gave him a smile. "Fancy weather we're having eh?" asked Zach from across the table, as Dhin faced the man and nodded. "Though I don't think you could hardly say that from up here" she said, as she brushed some hair away that was covering her left eye. "Well, now that you two are here. We can finally begin" said a man in a gruff accent wearing a full black suit mirroring that of Caston and Zach with the only noticeable difference being a metal pin resembling a blue flower with pointed petals and a red maple leaf in the middle.
"But first, I believe some introductions are in order to get everyone on the same page before debriefing" said Dr. Light, as everyone unanimously nodded in agreement. The scientist pointed to himself, and said "I'll go first".
"My name is Charles D. Light, but many of you know me as Dr. Light. A theoretical physicist with several other PhD's in the fields of quantum mechanics, and astrophysics. Basically I'm your physics guy" said Dr. Light, as he looked at Dhin who nodded in response.
"I am Orion Dhin, the Assistant Director of the Field Agent Corps as I'm sure the two of you would know" said Dhin, as she looked at the two agents.
Caston gave a stiff nod, while Zach gave a carefree one.
Dhin glanced at the man that sat next to her, who looked at her and gave her a meek nod.
"Names Asrani Aarif…and I'm a historian from the…Archeological Department…" said the man, as he hid his face inside of his black faded hoodie's hood with his arms tightly crossed over his chest and lightly scratching at his sides.
'This guy looks like he just crawled out from under a rock somewhere' thought Caston, as Zach thought 'glad to know that Igor survived the collapse'.
"And I'm Trinity Sierra, but you all can refer to me as Dr. Sierra. I have a masters in engineering, computer science, electrochemistry, and robotics. Basically, I do machines" said a bald woman wearing a lab coat, whose face was one half flesh and the other half metal.
Dr. Sierra looked at the last person that had yet to introduce themselves, the suited man whose voice betrayed his appearance, which was that of a young man in his early 20's. "I'm a higher up from the National Department of Defense, here to oversee the operation. Just call me C.S.M".
'C.S.M? What kind of name is that?' thought Caston, as Zach thought 'stupid name'. Dr. Light lazily pointed at Zach, and Caston.
"I'm agent Calden" said Zach with a wave, as Caston said "I'm agent Hendriks".
Caston found himself in the watchful eye of C.S.M, being given a thorough once over before giving Zach the same treatment.
"Now that introductions are out of the way, let's get to the issue at hand" said Dr. Light, as the projector that was mounted on the ceiling turned on.
"Since when can you do that?" asked Dr. Sierra, as she looked at Dr. Light with a raised brow. "Since I lost my arm in the dream dimension" replied Dr. Light, as Dr. Sierra said "interesting…"
Caston said "wait, what?" Zach turned to face Caston, and said "oh right, yea so Dr. Light apparently lost an arm in the dream dimension, so a warning was issued to everyone's email to not communicate with it if it's seen in our dreams".
"Wait, why would anyone try and communicate with a disembodied hand?" asked Caston, as Dr. Light looked at Caston and said "don't try and talk with it. Just trust me on that".
Caston blinked, and said "right" while slowly nodding as he accepted what the scientist said as fact.
"Now, that we are all acquainted with each other. I will proceed with the situation debriefing" said Dr. Light, as he looked at the wall to his right alongside everyone else in the room, at an image that was projected onto the wall, showing an explosion of energy of various colors, all emanating from an urn in the epicenter of the image.
"Four days ago, at around 1:00 AM in the morning. The SOI designated as 'Urn' became active after an approximate period of inactivity ranging from 500-1000 years. Give, or take a couple of months since it is an estimate" said Dr. Light, as Asrani muttered quietly to himself "an extremely accurate one".
The image being displayed changed into one that displayed the urn on its own, but in much greater detail.
"Urn was found 10 years ago, acquired from a remote village found in Quantif, Saudi Arabia. It was found in the midst of a series of incidents that were 'supernatural' in origin, occurring within a 5 mile radius of the SOI. Analysis was conducted by the Archeological Department on the SOI, after containment. The gist of which, Mr. Aarif can give a brief summation on" said Dr. Light, as he pointed to Asrani.
Asrani shuffled in place, as he lightly scratched his arms while glancing briefly at everyone in the room before his gaze turned to the table. "The analysis concluded that…the Urn was constructed in the year 3,500 BC. Found through carbon dating and…not architectural make up because…" said Asrani, as his head twitched a little. "…the designs on it, are unlike anything found in pottery at the time" said Asrani, as Dr. Light nodded and said "aptly put Mr. Aarif".
"The iconography present on the outer surface of the SOI, as stated my Mr. Aarif, is unlike anything found at the time in which this Urn should've been constructed in" said Dr. Light, as he held one finger up and said "in fact, it's unlike ANY piece of pottery found at any point of human history. It's completely alien".
"So, are the symbols etched onto it a complete mystery or have they been deciphered?" asked Dhin, as Dr. Light nodded and said "they were, for the most part".
The projected image changed to one showing a close up on the urn, and specifically on a set of symbols that vaguely resemble the human form. "And according to their report on the matter at hand, the urn depicts two deities of unknown origin. One embodying creation, and the other embodying destruction" said Dr. Light, as Asrani meekly raised a single finger up, with Dr. Light gestured him to speak. "According to the markings on the urn…the two deities are likely similar to…Abzu and Tiamat of Mesopotamian worship…but that's…" said Asrani, as he let out an awkward cough, and said "…mere speculation based on area and time period…no actual connection…outside of that…"
"Now, only recently was it established that SOI Urn, was the gateway to an extradimensional pocket of space-time that is inhabited by beings of pure energy, the identities of whom are not entirely known" said Dr. Light, as the projected image changed to one showing a humanoid entity made entirely out of a piercing blue light, in a large empty void. Appearing as though it was reaching out to everyone that was currently looking at it.
"There are two of them known to exist, but only one was ever observed" said Dr. Light, as C.S.M simply stared at the image asking "do you know what these…'thing's' capabilities are?" Dr. Light nodded sideways, and replied "I'm afraid I do not, as almost all attempts at communication with them failed in some way".
Dr. Sierra looked at the physicist with a confused expression, as she asked "almost?" Dr. Light nodded, and said "almost, because that's where the plan comes in".
The projected image changed to show an image that detailed the general outline of the plan that Dr. Light had come up with. The image looked like it was crudely drawn by hand, using stick figures and arrows to indicate that two people would be hooked up to a machine of some sort, and have their minds put into the SOI, which was drawn so badly that a disclaimer had to be put next to it specifying that it was in fact an urn and not a bong or a badly drawn unicycle.
Everyone simply stared at the image, with a myriad of thoughts going through everyone's mind. 'Still insisting on being able to draw, I see' thought Dr. Sierra, as she lightly shook her head sideways. 'Heh, it DOES look like a bong' thought Dhin, as she mentally chuckled. 'Got my hair just right' thought Zach, as Caston thought 'why is this drawn by hand? Literally everything else is done digitally'. He looked at Dhin, and Zach with a confused expression. They both gave Caston a look that said "hell if I know". 'Professionalism at it's finest…' thought C.S.M, as he let out a sigh.
"ANYWAYS, as you can see, the plan is simple. Using blueprints that were acquired from the SOI Hard Drive a couple years ago, as apart of the ongoing research project Decoder, a machine capable of transferring consciousness's from one point to another, that was built a couple of days ago courtesy of Dr. Sierra…" said Dr. Light, as he pointed to Dr. Sierra who gave him a nod.
"…and used to transfer the minds of agents Calden and Hendriks into the SOI so that they can figure out what's going on and relay the information back to us after coming back. They'll do so by using the safe word 'butter fingers'" said Dr. Light, as he looked at everyone else and asked "any questions, or issues with this plan?"
Caston shot his hand up, as Dr. Light looked at him and said "this isn't public school, agent Hendriks, just tell me what your question is". "Okay, isn't there a less dangerous way of trying to figure out what the root cause of the problem is?" asked Caston, as he saw Assistant Director Dhin nod in agreement. 'Oh thank god, she's on my side' thought Caston, as Dhin said "yes, I also have a bit of issue with that. Is it approved by the C.O.D?" Dr. Light nodded, and said "they're assignment mappers were the ones that suggested it in the first place. My original plan was to do it myself, but then they brought up the fact that it's not in my job description to do so and that the union would have a field day with it".
Dhin nodded, and said "in that case I have no issues with this plan". 'Oh great…' thought Caston, as Dr. Light gave Caston a flimsy wave of reassurance saying "you have nothing to worry about agent Hendriks, everything will go swimmingly". Caston brought his arm back down, as he thought 'somehow, I doubt that'. Zach raised his arm, as Dr. Light sighed and said "what did I say about this not being public school?" Zach put his arm on the table, and said "I don't like the safe word. I mean, why 'butter fingers'?" C.S.M nodded, and said "I agree with the agent, I don't like it either". "Alright, fine. Then we'll change it to something else, any suggestions?" asked Dr. Light, as Zach said "trigger happy". "Deep throat" said C.S.M, as Dhin quietly said to herself "I quite liked 'butter fingers'". "I'm throwing out the word 'samurai'" said Dr. Sierra, as Caston shrugged and said "I'll go with whatever". Dr. Light let out a groan of frustration, and said "fine. If you two say any of those words, then we'll pull you guys back out".
Time: 6:30 AM
Location: Site 2, Axel Heiberg Island, Antarctica
The outer fringe of the Arctic Circle was consumed by a massive snow storm, bringing visibility down by 80 percent from Mokka Ford to Lancaster Sound. The wind howled like Fenrir wailing into the sky, to mourn the loss of a loved one with his black fur blanketing the sky in a boundless dusk, should one be able to spot the sky through the snowy pandemonium. It was an unnatural storm, brought forth by otherworldly energies that leaked out onto the air, from the subterranean military base that was Site 2. Stirring up the winds, and snow.
Inside a somewhat featureless square building made for 2, and seated on a chair mounted onto the floor. Was a man covered head to toe in body armor that doubled as protective gear designed to weather the harsh winters of the Arctic North, holding an assault rifle in hand that was as dark as the sky at night. He checked over it, as the snow storm raged on outside. Glancing out the window in front of him, he peered out into the raging blizzard and was barely able to make out the black silhouette of a man walking towards him.
'About time he shows up' thought Dave, as he placed his rifle on the metal table that protruded from the window in front of him. All the while a man, that's similarly dressed to the one seated inside the square building stepped in with a black thermos in one hand and an assault rifle strapped onto his back. Closing the door behind him, he placed the thermos on the table and took a seat on the floor mounted chair that was placed next to Dave.
"I was starting to think that you'd been swallowed up by the storm outside" said Dave, as the guard seated beside him turned to look at him and asked "does being lost for several hours count?" Dave turned to face Aleq, and said "hours? The hell are you talking about, you've only been gone for several minutes".
"Well it sure felt like hours…" said Aleq, as he opened up the thermos and breathed a sigh of relief as he felt the warmth of the hot chocolate inside.
"Regardless, I got the hot chocolate from the break room" said Aleq, as he handed Dave the lid of the thermos which also doubled as a cup.
"I'll be more than happy once they get that rift gate transport system up and running" said Dave, as he grabbed the cup and held onto it as Aleq poured some hot chocolate into it.
"Yea, that way we can get some more hot chocolate without ever having to go outside" said Aleq, as Dave added "or leave our post".
"Yea…" said Aleq, as he stopped pouring the hot chocolate, as Dave picked the cup up and smelled the delicious substance that it contained.
Dave took a sip from the cup, and said "this damn storm has been going on for FOUR days straight, and it sure as hell doesn't show any signs of stopping…"
"You know, it's at times like these that I wish I was at home, instead of sitting inside of this metal box…I mean, I could've been reading a book, writing a book, reviewing a book, eating a book, or anything else really" said Aleq, as he motioned Dave for the cup.
"And I could've been working on my boat" said Dave, as he handed Aleq the cup which he filled with hot chocolate from the thermos.
"You mean the boat that you'll never finish?" asked Aleq, as he looked at Dave with a raised brow, though it could not be seen due to the fact that his entire body was completely covered up by layers upon layers of fabric, and Kevlar.
"Hey, I'll have it finished by next week" exclaimed Dave defiantly, as Aleq said "you've been saying that for the last 3 years!" All the while Aleq took a sip from his cup.
"But this time it's true, I'll be retiring next week" said Dave, as Aleq replied "you've ALSO been saying that for the last 3 years as well!"
Aleq took a sip from his cup, and asked "besides, do you even know how to SAIL a boat?"
"I know how to sail a boat!" exclaimed Dave.
"Oh really?" asked Aleq, as he finished his drink and placed the cup on the table and turned to face Dave. Cupping his chin with his right hand, and his right elbow being supported by his left hand wrapping around it. Leaning in closer
"Pray tell then, how one would use a boat…" said Aleq.
"Well…you take the boat…and then you…put it on water and…uh…sail it…" replied Dave.
"That's it? That's ALL there is?" asked Aleq, with a furrowed brow.
"Yes…duh…everyone knows that" said Dave, as Aleq rubbed his forehead muttering "Jesus Christ".
"Yea, well…how about you finally propose to your girl friend already" said Dave, as Aleq replied "I'm just taking things slow!"
"You've been saying that for 3 YEARS. At this rate, a snail would propose to her before you do" said Dave, as he grabbed Aleq's shoulders and shook him back and forth vigorously while saying "a god damn snail!"
Taking his hands off of Aleq, the man simply stared at Dave.
"Or at least that's what I have to say about that anyway…" said Dave, as he grabbed the thermos and picked the cup off of the table and sealed the cylindrical container completely.
Aleq slowly nodded, as he slowly turned around and faced the window in front of him. Looking out onto the chaotic mess of wind, and snow. He stared out into the raging blizzard, as the flickering blips of white dots partially formed into a snail, a woman, and then a heart. Before fading into the flickering white, and disappearing altogether. Leaving nothing but the blizzard that continued to rage on, as his mind began to wander.
Dave glanced at Aleq, and asked "Aleq?" Dave's eyes focused on Aleq, as he continued to absent mindedly stare outside. "Aleq?" asked Dave once again, as Aleq continued staring. "Hello? Earth to Aleq? Come in Aleq?" asked Dave, as he waved one of his hands in front of Aleq's face. Switching to snapping his fingers, after realizing that the waving had no effect on the man whatsoever.
"Kid, you're starting to scare me now…" said Dave, as if almost on command, Aleq snapped out of his thoughts and snapped his neck to head to face Dave. Grabbing him by the shoulders, and pulling him closer, he shouted "OH MY GOD YOU'RE RIGHT!"
Dave blinked, as Aleq let go of Dave's shoulders and cupped his chin as he glanced up and said "I should call her up right now".
Dave slowly nodded, and said "sure, might as well since we're holed up inside of small box with a single window in the middle of a blizzard".
Aleq patted his entire body, and sifted through every pocket on his person before turning to face Dave, and asking "Dave, can I use your phone?"
"What happened to yours?" asked Dave, as Aleq replied "the storm swallowed it".
Dave sighed, and pulled out a black cellphone out of one of his jackets pockets and handed it over to Aleq.
"Thanks" said Aleq, as he dialed a number on it and put the receiver up to one of his ears.
Dave looked out onto the blizzard, as he thought 'better late than never, I suppose'.
"Michelle, hi! Yea, I'm at work right now" said Aleq, as he chuckled and said "yea, I know. We're caught in it right now. Yea, with Dave, the old guy I work with".
'I'm not THAT old' thought Dave, as Aleq said "no, he still hasn't retired yet. I know, he keeps blabbing to everyone that he will but here he is. Still employed".
'Oh just hurry up, and propose to her already' thought Dave, as he gave Aleq a glare.
"Anyways, the reason I called you up is because I've wanted to ask you something. Something important…something that the more I think about it I probably should've asked you in person but I just couldn't wait any longer" said Aleq, as he took in a deep breath thinking 'next phase of my life, here I come'.
"Michelle, would you marry me?" asked Aleq, as Dave leaned in a little, honing his ears on Aleq's mouth.
There was a brief moment of silence, which broke when Aleq began talking.
"…what…" said Aleq, as Dave tried to figure out what was going on.
"What do you mean you…" said Aleq, as Dave thought 'what's going on, did she say yes…no that can't be right, if that was the case then he'd be over the moon. So did she say no?'
"YOU DID WHAT?!" exclaimed Aleq loudly, making Dave flinch as it caught him by surprise.
"You can't be serious Mich, you can't…" said Aleq, his voice starting to tremble a little.
'I have a bad feeling about this…' thought Dave, as he felt a sensation of unease wash over him. It was brief, but noticeable.
"I was taking it slow! It's been only 3 years!" exclaimed Aleq, with urgency erupting from every word he said. He shook his head sideways, as though he was in a panic. "Michelle, please don't do this…I just…I…" said Aleq, as his phone slowly slid off of his ear and fell down to his side. Dangling slightly in place, while being held by his arm, which at the moment had the visible consistency of a depressed pool noodle.
Aleq slowly, and weakly placed the phone on the table and turned to face Dave.
"Dave…" said Aleq meekly, as Dave asked "yes?"
"MICHELLE BROKE UP WITH MEEEEEE!" cried Aleq, as he lunged at Dave. Wrapping his arms around him, and hugging him as tight as possible while sobbing into one of his shoulders.
'Oh dear…' thought Dave, as he slowly patted Aleq on the back.
"There, there Aleq. I'm sure everything would be alright…" said Dave, as Aleq lifted his head off of Dave's shoulder and sniffled as he looked at the man's mostly covered up face.
"You don't understand…she left me…" said Aleq, as he sniffled before burying his head into one of Dave's shoulders as he shouted "A SNAIIIILLLL!"
Dave blinked, and thought 'a snail…she left him…for a snail…'
"A…snail?" asked Dave, as Aleq spoke whilst his face was pressed against the older man's shoulder, muffling his voice, and Dave was only able to make out 2 of the words that Aleq said.
'What was supposed to be figurative, ended up being literal. Great, just great…' thought Dave, as he let out a frustrated sigh thinking 'and now I'm stuck with this cry baby on top of this unbearable blizzard'.
As Dave continued to comfort his friend by patting him on the back, while mentally wishing that he hadn't brought up the idea of proposing. 2 agents inside of a room connected to many others through various interconnected hallways buried beneath the sobbing bachelor and his unfortunate friend, were mentally preparing themselves for the task that they had been assigned to.
"You know, when you said the words 'consciousness fusion', I didn't think it'd involve me being strapped onto a contraption that resembled the electric chair" said Caston, as he glanced over to Dr. Sierra who tightened up the leather strap that held a silver dome over his head, with wires protruding from it's surface, that then connected to all manner of computers and other such hardware.
"Are you kidding me? This is EXACTLY what I imaged when those words got brought up!" exclaimed Zach, who was giddy with envy. Strapped up to a similar contraption that Caston was hooked up to.
"Save your enthusiasm for when you have to engage the cosmic beings in conversation" said Dr. Light, as he took a sip from his cup of coffee. Hovering at shoulder length, as he pushed some buttons on a keyboard while glancing at an overhead monitor.
"You both remember your respective tasks correct?" asked Dr. Sierra, as she checked over the wires to make sure that all the connections were properly attached.
"Engage the extradimensional beings in conversation…" said Zach, as Caston added "…and figure out what's going on".
"And remember the talking points that the guys from the sub branch of the linguistics department gave you two" said Dr. Sierra, as she walked over to a keyboard next to Dr. Light and began typing away as lights began to flicker various colors on the machines that the agents were hooked up to.
"The flash card suggestions?" asked Zach, as Dr. Sierra glanced back and replied "yes". Before returning her attention to one of the over head monitors, eyeing the calculations that popped up.
Caston blinked, as he looked at Zach and asked "what flash cards?"
"The one's that were sent to us by that one guy, with the weird name…12 was his name I think" replied Zach, as a look of worry appeared on Caston's face.
"WHAT FLASH CARDS?!" asked Caston, this time louder and with more urgency than before.
"Calm down man, it's the ones that were sent to your email!" said Zach, as Caston stared at him with a dumbstruck look.
"We have an email?!" exclaimed Caston in surprise, as Zach raised a brow and asked "the hell do you mean 'we have an email'? Didn't you know we have a company email? It comes automatically programmed into our phones, along with a bunch of other stuff".
"THERE ARE OTHER THINGS YOU CAN DO ON THE PHONES BESIDES WATCH VIDEOS AND TALK TO PEOPLE? HOW AM I JUST FINDING OUT ABOUT THIS NOW?!" exclaimed Caston, as Zach asked "how ARE you finding out about this just now? How did you survive for the 3 years I've known you?"
"The hard way!" replied Caston, as Dr. Sierra said "alright, initiating consciousness transfer in t minus 10 seconds".
"Well, good luck dude" said Zach, as he looked away from his partner and at the two scientist that typed away at keyboards that protruded out from the walls. "I'm not prepared for this" said Caston, as he looked at the overhead monitors. Seeing the urn that lay behind the walls in front of him, burst with energy that crashed into each other in a chaotic sea of red and blue.
Dr. Light turned to face the agents, and said "good luck on your assigned tasks agents, see you back in several minutes…hopefully. If not, then I hope you two enjoy an eternity stranded between dimensions!"
"Your body will be kept in cryogenic stasis until you return!" added Dr. Sierra, as she gave the two agents a wave.
"Wait, what?" exclaimed Caston, as Dr. Sierra pushed a button and said "1".
"WHAT!" shouted Caston, as Zach shouted "INTERDIMENSIONAL CONSCIOUSNESS MAYHEM HERE WE GO!"
"I'M NOT PREPARED FOR THIS!" shouted Caston one last time, as the world him vanished into a sea of darkness. The last thing he saw being the scientists, and the room he was in. The last thing he heard being the enthusiastic screams of his partner, and the words "consciousness transfer in progress".
Caston looked around, alongside Zach who was next to him.
"Well, this is a little disappointing" said Zach, with a frown on his face.
"Yea, I got to say. This really wasn't what I-" said Caston, as he was cut off when the surrounding black void transformed into a sea of spiraling colors as he and his partner were shot through it, at speeds that would've made a free falling roller coaster feel like you were waiting for internet explorer to load up a flash heavy webpage while connected to dial up.
"YES-YES-YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEES!" shouted Zach, his eyes open wide and staring at the faint white light in the distance.
"DON'T-DIE-DON'T-DIE-DON'T-DIE-DON'T-DIE-DON'T-DIE!" shouted Caston, as he closed his eyes and screamed at the top of his lungs.
"What in the infinite worlds…"
"What the…how did you-"
"Hey, how did you get-"
"Hey stop screaming a-"
"I DON'T WANT TO DIE!" shouted Caston as his eyes burst open, gasping for air.
'What…the…hell…?' thought Caston, as his eyes took in his surroundings. A sight that didn't defy understanding, but expectation.
A large bedroom with a predominantly gothic architecture, and a queen sized bed in the middle. The walls were crimson, with some paintings on them. And standing over him was a red haired woman, wearing a red robe that covered everything from below the neck.
She had a look mixed with sadness and confusion. And there were tears that had welled up at the edges of her eyes.
Caston stared at her with a shocked expression on his face, thinking 'who is she, and why does she look sad?'
She then leaned in closer, startling Caston who quickly found his bearings by patting down his surroundings. Finding out that he was seated on a wooden floor with his legs sprawled out in front of him, he pushed himself backwards to try and distance himself from the robed woman.
"Woah!" she exclaimed, as she jumped back a bit the moment Caston began crawling.
'She just talked' thought Caston, as he stopped and looked at the woman while cocking his head to the side.
"Jeez, you nearly scared the daylights out of me!" said the woman, as she let out a sigh of relief.
"Uh…I'm sorry?" replied Caston, as he felt a wall behind him with his hands and proceeded to slowly get himself back onto his feet.
"Well, at least I know that you're alive..." said the woman, as Caston thought 'so is this one of the cosmic beings? It's probably the most likely assu-'
"NOW THEN PRAY TELL, WHERE EXACTLY DID YOU COME FROM?!" said the woman, as her voice boomed like a howling blizzard. Her eyes glowed a blood red, with light red energy leaking from them. A red aura appeared around her, as she stared at Caston with her hands crossed over her chest.
Her eyes pierced Caston's gaze, and he froze.
'Yup I was right!' thought Caston, as he began trembling.
"ANSWER ME MORTAL!" demanded the woman, her voice hitting Caston like gust of wind strong enough to rip tall skyscrapers off of the ground and send them flying thousands of feet in the air.
Caston stayed frozen, his left eye twitching while he was screaming internally.
"ANSWER ME DAMN IT!" shouted the woman, her voice sending Caston flying back first against a wall. He closed his eyes, and thought 'I'm dead! I just know it!'
Caston landed on his rear, and waited for his presumed inevitable demise. But as seconds passed, nothing happened.
'Is it over? Am I dead?' thought Caston, as he mulled over whether he should open his eyes. Until the sound of a 'thud' accompanied by crying pulled him out of his thoughts, and he opened his eyes out of curiosity.
'What the…' he thought, as he saw the woman who was previously gazing at her like a tower from hell was now sitting on the ground and sobbing into her hands.
'Ookay…' thought Caston, as he once again slowly got himself onto his feet. The woman continued to sob, as Caston wondered what he should do next.
'She seems…upset…I should do something…I mean, given my current circumstances…' thought Caston, as he shrugged.
'What have I got to lose?' he thought, as he asked nervously "uh…are you okay?" The crying woman pried her head away from her hands, and nodded sideways.
"No I'm not okay…" said the woman, as she sniffled. Wiping away some tears off of her robe.
"My husband forgot that today was our anniversary, and we got into a heated fight over it and now he refuses to talk to me…" said the woman, as she began to sob once more into her hands.
'Oh man…seeing her like this is starting to make me sad…even though she almost scared me to death just a couple of seconds ago' thought Caston, as he blinked and thought 'I did it! I figured out what's going on! Alright, now it's time to get out of here. Now what was the safe word again…uh…shotgun? No that's not right…Omega…Alpha…I'll be back? Gah, none of those are right! Damn it, I forgot the word'.
Caston let out a frustrated sigh, as he looked at the robed extra-dimensional being, on her knees and crying.
'Well…maybe I should…talk to her? See what's up?' thought Caston, as he glanced at his surroundings. His eyes scanning for a way out.
'It's not like there's anywhere for me to go, so might as well, I mean…what's the worst that could happen?' thought Caston, as he slowly walked over to the woman.
"Uh…there…uh…there… assumed cosmic goddess of…" said Caston as he walked up next to her, as she finished his sentence by saying "destruction".
"Destruction…right…" said Caston, as he thought 'of course, I get the one that's responsible for destroying things while Zach gets the one responsible for creation'.
Zach was currently standing in a room, filled with all manner of book shelves, a desk with a variety of utensils and opened books, and a hammock somewhere near the middle. While a blue haired man garbed in a white robe wrapped his hands around Zach, and sobbed into his shoulder.
"I CAN'T BELIEVE I FORGOT OUR ANNIVERSARRRYYY!" sobbed the man, while Zach had a blank expression on his face.
"There, there cosmic god…there, there…" said Zach, as he unenthusiastically pet the man's head.
Caston sat next to the woman, and said "…I'm sure that everything's not as bad as you just made it out to be?"
The woman shook her head sideways, and said "no it is that bad". She wiped away some of her tears, and looked at Caston.
"After my husband told me that he had forgotten that today is our anniversary, the two of us got into a big fight over it, and he said some mean things and I said some mean things and then he SCREAMED at me. Telling me that he'd consider a divorce, and then…and then…" said the goddess of destruction, as she sniffled.
"Take a deep breath…" said Caston as calmly as he could, while gesturing the woman with his hands to inhale and exhale. Which she did.
"…and then…I told him that…that…that I never liked being married to him in the first place and just left…" she said, as she buried her face into her hands.
"And you haven't said a word to him since?" asked Caston cautiously, as she shook her head sideways uttering a muffled "no" in response.
Caston let out a sigh, and thought 'ouch. Those are some harsh words'.
"So let me get this straight, you forgot that today was the anniversary of you and your wife's marriage" said Zach, with the blue haired man still clinging onto him like a cat scared of heights clinging to a fireman scared of heights clinging to a tree scared of heights clinging to the side of a skyscraper.
He nodded, and said "yes".
"After she made you a breakfast consisting of all of your favorite foods from across the multiverse…" said Zach, as the blue haired man sniffled and nodded saying "yes".
"And she got mad at you, and you didn't see what the big deal was which then caused a fight to break out in which she insulted your creativity and you insulted her inability to diverge from destruction" said Zach, as tears welled up in the blue haired extra-dimensional being's eyes, as he said in a somber tone "yes".
"And then ending things off by telling her that you should get a divorce, with her responding that marrying you was probably the biggest mistake that she had ever made" said Zach, as the blue haired man closed his eyes and hugged Zach even tighter than before.
'Ack! My lungs!' thought Zach, as he gasped for air while the blue haired man continued to tighten his grip. Until, he let go with his eyes bursting open and unleashing a torrent of water that sent Zach flying backwards.
"YEEEEESSSS!" sobbed the man, as water gushed out his eyes and began filling up the room. While Zach pinched his nose, and did his best not to run into all the items in the room that were thrown around throughout the water.
'Alright, so some supposedly harsh words were said on both sides…but it doesn't seem like its unsalvageable…hell I'm pretty sure I've seen regular suburban families that were more unsalvageable than these two…which says a lot about suburban families…' thought Caston, as he carefully thought about the next couple words he was about to say.
'Here's hoping I don't accidentally trigger my own cessation of existence…' thought Caston, as he clapped his hands together. Gaining the woman's attention.
"Okay, so while things look bad right now. I can tell you that…with a…reasonable degree of certainty…that it could be much worse and that this isn't unsalvageable" said Caston, as he pointed at the woman.
"…Unsalvageable?" she asked, pulling her head out of her hands and cocking her head to the side while looking at Caston. Wiping away the last of the tears that surrounded her eyes.
Caston nodded, thinking 'alright, doesn't look like I'm on thin ice at the moment so let's keep this ball rolling'.
"Right, you still have a chance to make amends. Set things right. To get your relationship with your…husband back on good terms" said Caston, as the woman asked sniffling "and how would I do that?"
"I have some ideas…" said Caston.
Zach was currently sitting on a desk, floating on an ocean that had filled up half of the room he was currently in.
Zach looked up, and saw a thick sheet of dark grey clouds blocking the ceiling.
'Jeez, how much more can this guy cry? He's filled up this entire room with his tears…' thought Zach, as he let out a tired sigh while getting up onto his feet.
Balancing upon the desk, and looking at his dress shoes he thought 'alright, I've had enough of this. Time to get to the bottom of this'.
He looked at the deep water, took a deep breath, and then jumped into it thinking '…literally'.
Zach swam down through the watery depths, passing all manner of objects along the way.
A golden trident, a silver capped ballpoint pen, and a mug that had an image of a heart being pierced by an arrow printed on it. Among other things.
'I swear this place wasn't this big before…' thought Zach, as his mind tried to ponder how large the room he was now swimming through had to be in order to house the amount of water that he was currently swimming through.
After about a minute of swimming, and sifting through the water looking for the blue haired god. He gave up, and returned to the surface. His head sticking out, and taking in a breath of fresh air.
"Well, look's like this is going to take a lot more time than I had initially thought" said Zach to himself, as he thought 'should've gotten ahead while I still had the chance'.
'I bet Caston's having an easier time than me…' thought Zach, as he took a deep breath and then dived back beneath the ocean of tears.
"So…you want me to…role play?" asked the woman, as Caston nodded.
"Yea, you're going to role play as your husband and I'm going to role play as…you…I guess…" said Caston, as the woman asked "why?"
'I have no idea, but I think I saw it on TV once so it must be legit' thought Caston, as he said "well…by simulating the problem at hand, it allows one to determine the best way to deal with it in a safe stress free environment".
The woman pondered on Caston's suggestion, as Caston thought 'it seems like she's finally stopped crying'.
"Alright, I'll bite…" she said while nodding, as Caston said "thanks…uh…what's your name? Exactly?"
"Well, I've been called many things over the years…Sarakhan, Tiamat, Arshana…" said the woman, as she cupped her chin and glanced at the ceiling.
"Okay, so which one do you prefer?" asked Caston, as the woman replied "well I've always been fond of the name Karen".
"Karen?" asked Caston, as the woman nodded.
"Alright, and my name is Caston".
"Caston Hendriks. Yea, I know who you are" said Karen, as Caston raised a brow and asked "…you did?"
"I'm an extradimensional primordial deity, and the abstract embodiment of destruction. Is it really surprising?" asked Karen, as Caston replied "no it is not".
'Figures' thought Caston, as Karen's entire body transformed into that of a blue haired man garbed in a white robe that covered everything below the neck.
Caston blinked, and asked "uh…what are you doing?"
"Oh, I'm just getting into the role of my husband by shapeshifting into him" said Karen, as Caston said "okay…we could've just pretended but yea that's fine too I guess".
"Alright, so…" said Caston, as he let out a fake cough.
"Hello, uh…" said Caston, as Karen said "just call him…er…me, Elkan".
"Okay…uh…hello Elkan…how's your day…uh…dear?" asked Caston.
"Oh you know…just being a giant cosmic asshole!" said Karen.
"Uh…" said Caston, as he was about to say something only to be interrupted by Karen who continued to talk.
"I mean, you my lovely wife made me a large banquet of food consisting of dishes from all across the infinite expanse of reality, PAINSTAKINGLY made with some of the most FICKLE ingredients in all of existence JUST so I could give you, my husband an amazing breakfast showcasing my love for you that never waned over the 6 billion years we've been together" said Karen.
"But you know, what? Fuck all that, I'm just not gonna bother giving enough of a shit to remember that TODAY is our anniversary and hurt your feelings!" said Karen, as she opened her eyes and shrugged.
"Um…" said Caston, as he was about to say something only to be interrupted by Karen who continued to talk.
"I mean it's not like it's anything special, it's just our anniversary" said Karen, her voice dripping with sarcasm in the latter half of her sentence.
"Uh…" said Caston, as he was about to say something only to be interrupted by Karen who continued to talk.
"Hey, screw you for insulting my creativity!" exclaimed Karen angrily, as Caston thought 'I didn't even say anything!'
"I mean, you're not any different since all you do is destroy things! You have a one track mind, and can't do anything else!" exclaimed Karen angrily, as tears began to well up in her eyes.
'I can already see where this is going…' thought Caston, as he let out a sigh while Karen continued talking.
"And you know what?" asked Karen, as she gritted her teeth while tears flowed down the sides of her face.
'Here comes the water works' thought Caston, as Karen shouted "I WANT A DIVORCE!" before falling onto her knees and burying her face inside the palms of her hands.
'Well that went well…' thought Caston, as he let out a sigh.
An alarm blared from an analog clock which stood on a wooden crate, next to a metal bed where a man with a heavy black beard slept.
The loud ear piercing sound emitted by the clock woke the bearded man up, and prompted him to slam his left hand on top of the time telling device. Silencing the alarm.
The topless man rubbed the gunk from the edges of his eyes, and glanced at his surroundings. His heavy eyes scanning the barebones metal room, with a closed metal door, and a chest in the far right corner.
'Same old, same old…' he thought, as he got up from his bed. His body looked old, and thin with wrinkles all over his face. He cracked a yawn, before walking towards the door, opening it by pulling on the red lever, and leaving the room.
He walked through several metal hallways, until he reached a room filled with several rows of lockers. He scanned past all of them, stopping at one that had the words 'Zach' written on it in black marker.
He smiled, and thought 'even after all these years, the ink is still there'. He opened the locker, and saw a calendar inside with a day circled in red marker. While all other days before it were crossed out.
The man smirked, while pulling out a white collared shirt, black suit, and pants out of the locker.
'Today's the day…finally…' he thought. Putting on the shirt, suit, and pants as he headed out of the room, and navigated through a plethora of hallways until he entered his destination by kicking open a metal door.
His white shirt was unbuttoned, and worn loosely over it was his black suit. His heavy eyes opened up, and he stared at the glass window in front of him. Showing an endless blue.
'I'm coming for you, blue…' thought Zach, as he walked towards the giant metal steering wheel in front of him.
Placing his hands on it, he pulled back a lever to his right and felt the entire room shake. He looked up at a large overhead monitor, his eyes surveying the map that was displayed on it. Focusing in on one specific portion of it that was highlighted by a red circle.
He looked at a dot that was next to the red circle, and was moving towards it.
He looked forward, and onward as the boundless water outside brushed up against the glass.
Moving through the water, was a black submersible which had been travelling through an endless blue expanse for nearly a decade, making occasional stops here and there. Making its way towards a destination, that had been outlined by the sole resident, captain, and pilot of the underwater vessel.
After an hours worth of travelling, the submarine came to a stop. A hatch on the underside opened up, and a metal man with a black visor slowly climbed out.
'This is the spot' thought Zach from inside the metal exosuit that he controlled, as he looked down at the boundless void of water beneath him.
'This is going to take some time…probably…' thought Zach, as he closed the hatch from which he climbed out of and proceeded to simply push himself down. Using his legs to propel him into the depths, with one powerful jump off of the underside of the submersible.
'I wonder what Caston's been up to…did he end up going on some wild goose chase like me? Heh…how fun would that be…but knowing him, he's probably doing something a bit more…down to earth…' thought Zach, as he stared off into the abyss.
The lone man, protected from the immense pressure of his surroundings fell deeper and deeper as his surroundings turned darker and darker. Eventually turning pitch black, as he found himself now falling through a black void.
'Now that I think about it, I never really tested out whether this exosuit could survive the Abyssopelagic zone…' thought Zach, as he shrugged.
'Oh well, I guess I'll find out soon enough' he thought, as he peered out into the darkness. Until he spotted a white light in the distance.
'That's him I think…now I can FINALLY get this all over with' thought Zach, as the white light turned into a large white land of flat even rock which Zach touched down on.
In front of him, was a familiar blue haired man garbed in a white robe sobbing into his hands.
Zach walked towards him, each footstep slamming hard against the rocky surface of the ground beneath like a giant trampling across the country side.
The man in front of Zach pried himself away from his hands, and glanced back.
He sniffled, thinking '…what…'
Zach grabbed him once he was within reach, and spun him around to face him. The blue haired man stared at the armored man, as the sound of a radio turning on echoed throughout the water. Indicated by a clicking sound, followed by static that emanated from the water proof speakers housed in the exosuit's helmet.
"NOW YOU LISTEN HERE, YOU BLUE HAIRED WHINY STUFFED ANIMAL OF A COSMIC INTERDIMENSIONAL-" shouted Zach, using the built in speaker system of his exosuit to do so.
"Extradimensional" corrected the extradimensional being.
"WHATEVER! POINT IS, I FINALLY FOUND YOU. I MEAN DO YOU KNOW HOW LONG IT TOOK ME TO FIND YOU IN ALL THIS BLUE?" shouted Zach, as the blue haired man simply stared at him.
"GUESS? COME ON…GUESS…" shouted Zach, as the blue haired man replied "a decade?"
"10 YEARS! I'VE BEEN SEARCHING FOR YOU FOR 10 YEARS, IN AN ENDLESS BLUE WORLD FILLED WITH YOUR PERSONAL BELONGINGS AND A SUBMARINE FOR SOME REASON, WHICH IS KINDA COOL AND WAS REALLY USEFUL WHICH I NAMED PEDRO AFTER MY FIRST AND LAST HAMSTER!" shouted Zach, as he shook the blue haired man back and forth.
The shaking ceased, as Zach stared into the primordial being's eyes with a burning fire of fury in his.
"SO NOW LISTEN HERE, YOU BLUE HAIRED COSMIC POOL NOODLE OF A MAN. HERE'S WHAT YOU'RE GOING TO DO" shouted Zach.
"YOU'RE GOING TO GO BACK TO YOUR WIFE, AND TELL HER THAT YOU'RE SORRY ABOUT FORGETTING HER ANNIVERSARY, AND THAT YOU CARE ABOUT HER DEEPLY AND THAT YOU DIDN'T MEAN ANY OF THE THINGS YOU SAID TO HER. ESPECIALLY ABOUT THE DIVORCE!" shouted Zach, as the man simply stared at him.
"AFTER WHICH, YOU'RE GOING TO PULL HER INTO A LONG EMBRACE AND KISS HER. MAYBE GET SOME TONGUE ACTION IN THERE, TAKE HER TO THE BED WHEREVER IT IS, RIP OFF YOUR CLOTHES AND HERS AND THEN BREAK OFF FROM HER MOUTH AND START WORKING YOUR WAY DOWN LIKE YOU'RE TRYING TO WIN A GOD DAMN RACE AGAINST TIME ITSELF!" shouted Zach.
Caston was currently lying back first on the floor, next to Karen who had stopped crying. Both of them stared at the ceiling.
"I'm going to get a divorce now…aren't I…" said Karen.
Caston nodded sideways, and said "nope".
Karen turned to face Caston, and asked "how do you know? Last I checked you're not omniscient".
"Are you?" asked Caston, as Karen replied "I am of whoever's in my domain".
"So then…" said Caston, as he turned to face Karen and said "you don't actually KNOW if he's going to go for a divorce".
"No but-" said Karen, as Caston interrupted her by saying "then you can't act like it's an absolute fact".
"Yea, but…everything's been really bad so far…I mean…he's probably already in the process of contacting our lawyer" said Karen, as Caston replied "he's not…wait…you guys have a lawyer?"
"Of course! Why wouldn't we have one?" asked Karen, as Caston replied "good point".
"THEN YOU TAKE YOUR ARM AND GIVE HER THE OLD THREE ARM CHARLIE!" shouted Zach, as he pumped his left hand into the air, balled into a fist.
"Point is, just because some mean things were said here and there. Doesn't mean it's the end of the world…" said Caston, as he thought 'even though it'd be the end of mine'.
"…it's just another part of life. And it isn't too late, you can go to him and tell him you're sorry and I know he'll say he's sorry too" said Caston, as Karen asked "you sure?"
"Enough to almost make it a guarantee" replied Caston, as Karen glanced at the ceiling.
"But you'll have to make the first move. He'll apologize, I know he will but you have to confront him because otherwise…you might very well loose him" said Caston, as Karen looked at him.
"So what do you say?" asked Caston, as Karen her lips and glanced at the ceiling. Mulling over her response in her head.
"AND USE YOUR WHOLE HAND IF FOUR FINGERS DON'T WORK, AND KEEP ON GOING UNTIL TIME AND SPACE START TO BREAK DOWN AT THE MACRO QUANTUM LEVEL!" shouted Zach, as the blue haired god shouted back excitedly "WHAT DOES THAT EVEN MEAN?"
"HELL IF I KNOW, I JUST SAW IT ON THE INTERNET ONCE!" shouted Zach in response.
"You know what?" asked Karen, as Caston asked "what".
She nodded, and said "I'll give it a shot".
"Really?" asked Caston, as the red head nodded.
"Yea, I'll go see him and tell him I'm sorry. As long as he apologizes as well" said Karen, as Caston added "which I know he will" while thinking 'I hope'.
"AND THAT'S what I call a 'climactic finale'" said Zach, as he took his hands off of the blue haired man who simply stared at him with his eyes wide open.
"So, do you know what you have to do now?" asked Zach, as the blue haired man slowly nodded.
"Y-Yes I do…" he said, as he lightly blushed. Thinking about doing all the things that Zach shouted at his face.
All the while Zach smirked, seeing the man's cheeks turn a dark shade of red.
"I can see that" said Zach, as he strongly patted the man on the back. Lightly pushing him forward as a result.
"Go to her my dude, and stop this marriage from falling apart" said Zach, as he looked at the blue haired man's face. Who looked back, and nodded.
"I will…thank you for setting me straight…Zach" he said, as Zach replied "ah, no problem uh…"
"Just call me Elkan" said the blue haired man, as Zach nodded and said "Elkan, got it".
Elkan closed his eyes, and opened them. A blue blinding light erupting from his eyes, and consuming everything around the two of them.
"Alright, so all you have to do is-" said Caston standing up, as he was cut off by a sudden flash of light that temporarily blinded his eyes.
"AH MY EYES!" shouted Caston, as he covered his eyes.
Karen went wide eyed, at the two people standing in front of her and Caston. Specifically the blue haired man, who stood directly in front of her.
"Elkan?" asked Karen.
Elkan gulped, as Zach strongly pat him in the back, and nearly making him fall.
"You know what to do dude, good luck" said Zach, as he put his hands in his pockets and walked over to Caston. Who had his eyes closed, and was trying to feel his surroundings with his hands.
"Hey honey…" said Elkan nervously, as he slowly walked over to Karen.
"Hey Cas, long time no see" said Zach, as he walked up to Caston who turned to face Zach while his spread out arms moved around.
"Zach? Is that you?" he asked, as Zach answered "no it's your lord, and savior Jesus Christ".
"What?!" exclaimed Caston, as he opened his eyes, bracing himself for a blinding light only to find that it wasn't the case.
"Zach!" said Caston, as he took in the sight of the old bearded man.
"Sup" replied Zach, as Caston cocked his head to the side and asked "Zach…why do you have a beard, and look 10 years older?"
"Oh it's nothing. I just spent roughly 10 years looking for a deity of creation in a deep ocean made up of his tears" said Zach, as Caston blinked. "You know all you had to do was figure out what happened, and then get out right? Didn't need to go looking for the guy for a decade" said Zach, as Zach shrugged and said "I guess, I forgot".
"Oh" replied Caston, as Zach asked "and what about you? Did you figure out what happened?"
"Yea, I did" answered Caston, as Zach asked "then how come you didn't bail?"
"Because I…uh…well…forgot the safe words too" replied Caston, as Zach nodded and said "forgetting the safe words. That is such a Caston thing to do".
"Anyways, I managed to find the guy and convince him to go and apologize to his wife. Make amends you know?" said Zach, as Caston looked at him and said "so did I. To his wife I mean".
Zach looked at Caston, and smiled. "Nice, but did you have to go on a journey 10,000 leagues under the sea before hand?" asked Zach, as Caston replied "nope".
"Then in that case I take back by nice. Now it's half a nice" said Zach, as Caston asked "ice?"
"Basically" said Zach, as he and his partner turned to face the two deities.
"Karen listen…I...I'm sorry about forgetting our anniversary, and hurting your feelings by acting like it wasn't a big deal. It was, I mean, it IS a big deal" said Elkan, as he grabbed her hands and looked into her eyes.
"It's a celebration of the day we got married, a reminder of the reason I fell in love with you…" said Elkan, his voice drenched with endearment.
"And I'm sorry for forgetting that…and even more so for bringing up the IDEA of a divorce. Can you ever forgive me?" asked Elkan, while looking into Karen's eyes.
Tears welled up in Karen's eyes, and she sniffled before pulling Elkan into a hug.
"I forgive you Elkan, and I'm sorry for all the hurtful things I said!" sobbed the woman into the man's shoulder.
"I'm sorry, for all the mean things I said as well!" said Elkan, as he burst into tears and sobbed into his wife's shoulder.
"Would you look at that…" said Zach.
"A happy ending, as far as I can tell" added Caston.
The two of them pulled back from each other, with Elkan wiping away Karen's tears.
"Look's like our job here is done" said Zach, as he turned to face his partner.
"Look's like it" said Caston, as he turned to his partner and gave him a nod.
"Ready to leave this place behind?" asked Elkan, as Karen lightly chuckled and asked "why do you have something in mind?"
Elkan let out a nervous chuckle, whilst vivid imagery of what Zach told him earlier appeared in his mind.
"Maybe…" said Elkan with a smirk, as Karen shrugged and said "sure, but first…"
She looked at Caston, and said "…there's something I have to do".
Breaking away from her husband, and walking towards Caston she said "Caston Hendriks…"
'Oh gods, goddesses, whatever people that can make universes, she's coming this way!' thought Caston in a panic, as Karen walked over to him.
"I have to thank you for helping me with all of this…" said Karen, as she pointed at her surroundings while twirling in place.
"It's nothing, just doing my…civic duty, I guess?" said Caston, with a hint of confusion in his voice.
"On that note…" said Elkan, as he walked over to Zach.
"I have to thank you as well Zachariah Calden, for knocking some sense into me" said Elkan.
"No problem, besides…yelling at a cosmic deity to get off their sorry ass is just one of my many hidden talents" said Zach, with a smile.
'Yelling at a cosmic deity? The hell happened with those two?' thought Caston, as Elkan lowly muttered "and especially for giving me those amazing ideas on what to do afterwards".
"As such, in accordance with cosmic customs I must grant you some kind of blessing for helping me with my troubles" said Karen, as Elkan added "as do I".
'Cool' thought Zach, while Caston thought 'a blessing huh? Well at least I'm getting SOMETHING for my troubles'.
"So, what do you want?" asked Karen flatly, as Caston uttered out a confused "huh?"
"What do you want? I can bless you with whatever you want, like do you want superpowers? Your own planet? A successful book series? A space exploration company? Literally anything you want, I can give it to you" said Karen, as Elkan added "ditto".
'Awesome…but I can't waste this opportunity…now let's see…' thought Zach, as he began thinking for what he would want.
All the while Caston glanced at his partner, and thought 'whatever he's thinking, I don't like it'.
"So…literally anything?" asked Caston, as Karen nodded.
"Anything" reiterated Karen.
'Anything I want…that's extremely broken, and a daunting task…' thought Caston, as Zach said "alright, I know what I want".
'What?! How did he figure out what he wanted so fast?!' thought Caston, as Elkan said "shoot".
"I want…to keep in touch" said Zach as Karen, Elkan, and Caston had confused looks on their faces.
"What?" asked Caston, as Karen added "I second that, what?"
"To keep in touch" reiterated Zach, as Elkan asked "what, like friends?"
"Yea, basically" answered Zach, as Elkan and Karen looked at each other and then back at the agents.
"Alright, that can be arranged" said Elkan, as Karen nodded and said "I wouldn't mind having a human friend, honestly out of all the people I've met over the countless millennia. You're actually a nice guy to be around".
"Thanks but, uh…how do you know that, I mean you just met me" said Caston, as Karen replied "omniscience, remember?" Caston blinked, and nodded. "Right" said Caston, as Karen asked "so what do you say? Wanna be friends?" Caston let out a nervous chuckle, and said "sure, why not".
"Ditto" said Zach, and Elkan at the same time. "Jinx, you owe me a soda!" they both said at the same time, before laughing. All the while Karen lightly chuckled at her husbands antics, while Caston rolled his eyes at his partner's actions.
"Alright, so I'll put our numbers onto your phones…" said Elkan, as he snapped his fingers. Creating a wave of energy that rippled throughout the air. "…and we'll be on our merry way" he said, as Caston replied "and so would we, once we figure out what the uh…safe word is".
"Speak for yourself, I already know what the safe word is. Or at least what it could be" said Zach, as Caston looked at him with a raised brow.
"What? I thought you forgot it like I did" said Caston, as Zach nodded sideways and said "hah, like I'd forget things THAT easily".
"Then why did you…" asked Caston, as Zach replied "why do I do anything, Cas? Because it's fun, that's why".
"So you had the chance to get out when you did, after figuring out what was wrong and instead you decided to stick around and see what would happen…" said Caston, as he nodded his head. "Saying it out loud, it does sound like something you'd do" said Caston, as Karen added "honestly, I'm surprised you didn't see it coming". "Yea, he's situationally dense like that" said Zach, as Caston lightly punched him in the shoulder.
"Okay, so what's one of the safe word?" asked Caston, as Zach looked to the two deities. "See you guys around" said Zach, as he gave the cosmic couple a wave. "Good bye" they both said, as they gave the agent a wave.
Zach turned to face Caston, and said "it's deep throat". After saying those words, Zach vanished into thin air. All the while Elkan blushed, as an image of something Zach said from his rant popped up into his mind. "Ell, what's wrong?" asked Karen, as Elkan shook his head vigorously and looked at his wife and said "nothing".
'Why do I get the feeling that was intentional' thought Caston, as he looked to the gods and bid them farewell.
"Good luck with the rest of your lives!" said Caston, as Karen replied "thanks, and you too". "Ditto" added Elkan, as Caston said "deep throat".
Time: 2:30 PM
Location: Site 2, Axel Heiberg Island, Antarctica
Seated inside of a well lit room at a table was Dr. Light, and across from him was Caston and Zach. "So, that's what happened?" asked the scientist, as the two agents nodded. "That's what happened" said Caston, as Zach added "yup".
Dr. Light nodded, as he stopped a recorder and picked it up before pocketing it in one of his coat pockets. "Alright, that's that. The SOI has become inactive, and if what you're saying is true then it seems as if the issue has been dealt with" said Dr. Light, as he got up from his seat. "All the while presenting an interesting proposition and potential asset for the Agency" said the scientist, as he smirked.
"So is that it?" asked Caston, as Dr. Light nodded. "That's all for now. I'll have your words converted into a digitized transcript to be added to the SOI's file, but aside from that you two are done for the day. You can leave once you're done being checked out the P.A.A" said the scientist, as he walked away with his one hand buried in one of his coats pockets. As his mug of coffee that was on the table, lifted into the air and followed him as he left the room.
"Have a good day agents" said the scientist, as he left.
Caston turned to face Zach, and said "I don't like when that man smirks…or smiles…" Zach got up from his seat, and said "better smiling than bawling his eyes out. That's for sure". Caston got up from his seat, and said "I still have footage of you giving that man a shoulder to cry on, after being exposed to SOI Thilveri Istoria". Zach pointed an accusatory finger at Caston, and said "you have no proof that I WASN'T under the influence of Thilveri Istoria!" "And you have no proof that you weren't" replied Caston smugly, as he smirked. "You can't prove something using a double negative" said Zach, as Caston made his way towards the door. "Who says?" asked Caston sarcastically, as Zach replied "says me". Caston put his hand on the door knob, and turned around to face Zach and said "in other words, no one".
The duo left the room, and found themselves in a hallway with two people standing in front of them. "Agents Calden, and Hendriks. Come with us, and we'll begin the Post Assignment Assessment" said one of the two, a woman with long black hair and a black visor covering her eyes. While the man next to her, who had a black visor covering his eyes similarly to that of the woman, nodded in agreement. Zach gallantly waved one hand to left, and said "lead the way".
A set of doors slid open, as the two agents walked out of a room, the inside of which was akin to a pristine walk-in clinic. "Well that was quick" said Caston, as Zach replied "you'd have thought that having your consciousness transferred over to an urn containing an alternate plane of existence where two powerful deities reside, would have lead to more intensive tests being run. All they did was hit me in the legs, arms, and the left side of my head with a rubber hammer a couple of times and then say they're done". Caston shrugged, and said "those guys are just as weird as some of the other bizarre people in the different departments. I mean, they always wear those black visors. Like, what do they even do?" Zach shrugged, and said "hell if I know".
Caston felt one of his pockets vibrate, and he put one of his hands into it and pulled out his phone. Logging into it, he saw that he had received two text messages from two different people. One which he recognized, and the other he didn't.
Tapping over to the message sent by the recognizable source, he read over it.
Agent Hendriks, due to the confirmed audio logs procured by Dr. Light in his Post Assignment Interview. You, and your partner have been marked for future collaborative assignments with the Archeological and Linguistics departments. If you or your partner receive any information from the two entities located within SOI Urn, contact me, until a proper researcher is assigned to any collaborative assignments that you two become attached to.
Caston sighed, as Zach asked "A.D sent you a message on what's going to happen to us moving forward?" Caston nodded, as he opened up the second message. The one from a foreign source.
"I'm not even sure, how she learned about that stuff already. I mean he only left us a couple of minutes ago, and she's at Site 4 right now" said Caston, as Zach shrugged and said "what can I say, guy works fast I guess".
Caston read over the contents of the second message.
Hey Caston, it's me Karen. It's been a while since I've texted anyone anything, actually…it's been ALONG time since I talked to…well…anyone really. And man, have things changed. I mean, wow, these new fangled 'phones' are really something. I remember back in the old days, people were writing stuff down in stone, and now? You guys have all these small little bricks that can do a whole lot more. Man, now I feel old…and like I've been living under a rock all these years. Or an urn. Wait, what was I doing again? Oh, right I remember now. So Caston, I've sent you the first text so you can text me back. I might not text back in time, because I may or may not have figured out how to activate 'notifications' or whatever you call that thingy that tells you that other things have done things. Oh, and also, about your wish, you know, the one I said I'd grant you? Yea, well…when Elkan had our numbers added onto your phones…due to technicalities…your partner's wish…kinda became your wish too. Sorry about that, but hey, I can make up for it with food! We're having a little get together a week from now, and I'm cooking! See you at…whenever I guess since time flows differently for us than it does for you!
Caston let out a long sigh of relief, as Zach asked "let me guess, you got a long winded message from Karen?" Caston nodded, and turned to face the man who held his phone in one of his hands. "How about you?" asked Caston, as Zach replied "Elkan kept this pretty concise, for the most part". "Then, why did you…?" asked Caston, as Zach replied "he said she get's a little…carried away, to say the least". Caston scoffed, and said "to say the least? She went on a mini tangent half way, making the whole message pointlessly long". Caston showed Zach the text message, as he glanced at it and chuckled. "God damn" said Zach, as Caston added "I think you mean, goddess damn". "Ha, good one" said Zach, as Caston pushed a button on his phone and pocketed the device. "She also doesn't seem to know how to use phones very well…or have used one…apparently" said Caston, as Zach nodded and said "yea, he said that she'd be like that".
"Though, on the plus side we have a get together, and she's cooking!" said Zach with a smirk, as Caston chuckled and said "if her whole, multiversal breakfast was anything to go by. Then I can't wait for what's in store. Though, we should probably forward them to the Assistant Director so she knows".
"Man, what a couple of days it's been. Getting our minds blasted into an urn containing another plane of existence and…" said Zach, as he walked ahead of Caston, glanced back, and coyly said "…getting down and dirty with one lean-mean-definitely-not-green lizard". Caston blushed, as Zach burst into a sprint with his partner chasing after him.
"ZACH!" shouted Caston, as Zach ran like a steam train being fueled by raw powdered caffeine.