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The Old Man and Mr. Kane

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[This is actually a dialogue that is happening concurrently with the battle between Mebius and The Architect. It's so incredibly awesome it requires its own set of posts. Too bad we haven't told you what happens yet. In this post, more dialogue and 'plot development' occurs. Or maybe this is putting a little bit too much 'de' in the development :D]

 

"Well, they'll be at that nonsense for awhile."

 

"Hmm?"

 

Kane looked at the Zookeeper like he was mad, then back at the two fighters. "The battle?"

 

"Oh, I hadn't noticed."

 

"You know, you really are a rude son of a bitch."

 

The Zookeeper kept on rocking. Kane spat and walked inside the hut. It was small, full of meaningless objects, the kind one would expect to find in a farmhouse: tools, drying herbs and vegetables, glass bottles for canning, a fireplace and old wood table. None of it caught his interest.

 

"So you made this place?"

 

"This place was never made," came the chuckling response and the squeak of the rocker.

 

This was getting nowhere. He needed some information on what he - or rather, his brother - had been hired to find.

 

"Tell me about the Object."

 

"Object? You'd have to be more definite."

 

"Not what that clown with the white hair was talking about. Something bigger, more important."

 

"There's nothing like that here. Only monsters, man-eaters, and Eaters."

 

"And the Zookeepers."

 

"Hmm?" croaked the old man.

 

"You said you were a Zookeeper. I want to know how many there are. One of you has to know what it is I'm looking for."

 

"Huh? You young 'uns sure ask some meaningless questions. How can there be many of something that never existed?"

 

"Don't delude me, Old Man. You are clearly here. And so is the Object. And it sure as hell isn't canned strawberries."

 

"Young folk sure get some strange ideas. It's a pity you don't live long enough to learn." He yawned and scratched his white beard and yawned, continuing to rock. "None of you."

 

"And if you're here, and you fail to answer my questions, or give a damn, then you'll react to this." Kane raised his sidearm and leveled it at the old man. "And if you're not, then you certainly won't have any objections."

 

The Zookeeper went on rocking as Kane pulled the trigger with a click.

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Oh, what brilliance there was in that moment, colors upon colors upon colors cycling in and out, to and fro, over and under, melding and colliding in a kaleidoscopic display of raw, unadulterated spectrums. The way they moved, the way they danced about, the way they sang to one's vision, it was all part of a glorious show meant to be savored down to the most incomprehensible measure of time. Unfortunately, savoring was one of the millions of things Zookeeper could no longer due, the crisping, solidifying ooze that was once his head having already leaked a bit down to his waist about halfway through this paragraph.

 

There was an encumbered display of godly fury, grass wilting, and a deity now found himself between two opponents, one of them having been responsible for Zookeeper's unsightly remains (at least from the chest up). However, even as another battle started, more strange events were already being spawned, though this was hardly anything new in the Garden.

 

Zookeeper was dead, but he wasn't gone.

 

Poor kids, getting all bent outta shape over nothin', his voice whispered from nowhere, far too low for the fighters to catch. This ain't a funeral... it's a celebration, so stop frownin' and get with the fun. Time's almost up.

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