Saturday, June 27, 2020
Tuesday, June 23, 2020
The heavy smell of incense saturated the air as Hyren followed Blynn through the old wooden door of an upstairs shop. On the other side was a small waiting area, littered with cushions. A grouping of lanterns hung from the ceiling, shedding a cool, soothing ultramarine glow. Silk paintings of Shenkuuvian landscapes adorned the walls. The ambience began to make Hyren quite sleepy, a sensation not helped by the two hours it had taken them to find this place. It was times like these that made him miss his old mutant body and its incredible endurance.
“What possessed you to think this was a good idea?” he grumbled to Blynn. “We should have gone to the palace and gathered more information instead of this… hokey nonsense.”
“Shh, don’t be rude,” the Zafara hissed. “That dockworker told us this was the best place in the city for information.”
“I don’t trust weirdos who think the phase of Kreludor will influence someone’s luck at the stock market,” Hyren said. He wrinkled his lack of nose at a zodiac chart on the wall, showing a circle of Petpets accompanied by rings of broken and unbroken lines. “Most of this doesn’t even have anything to do with real magic, it’s just stuff superstitious pets thought up that sounded mystical, and other pets believed them.”
Blynn approached the elaborately embroidered curtain at the back of the room. “Most of it’s not real magic,” she said. “For every fifty frauds, there’s a genuine soothsayer. Some pets do have that gift.”
“Are you going to stand out there all night or are you going to come in?” asked a voice from behind the curtain. It was husky and female, relaxed but with a bit of a professional clip. “I have no other clients right now.”
“O-of course,” Blynn stammered, pulling the curtain aside. A beam of soft orange light fell on her face like she’d found a portal to Moltara. “C’mon, Hyren.”
Thursday, June 18, 2020
Hyren felt like his stomach had dropped to his stubby blue knees. “Terra? Terra!” he shouted, not bothering to disguise the panic in his tone. He pushed past the Grarrl in back of him, who let out an annoyed growl, and looked around wildly at the sea of pets that had gathered to watch the parade.
The Grundo’s antennae quivered as he strained to hear his owner’s voice over the din of the crowd, in vain. His eyes darted back and forth, but Terra’s braid and Pharazon’s faerie Draik wings were nowhere to be found. His stomach clenched into a knot and his hand strayed toward the sword at his waist.
A paw clutched his shoulder and turned him around. “Hyren, what are you doing?” Blynn asked.
“They’re gone,” he breathed, staring into her magenta eyes with a growing frustration and fear. Every moment he spent talking was another moment lost in looking for them. “I took my eyes off of them for two seconds and they’ve—disappeared!” He’d looked after them for years, promised them he would protect them, and now his worst nightmare was coming true. The full realisation of that sickening feeling started to wash over him and his antennae drooped.
The Zafara gave him a gentle shake. “Calm down—just calm down before you hyperventilate, okay?” she said. “They’ve gotta be around here somewhere.” She scampered out of the cluster of spectators and he followed, both of them swinging their heads about for any sign of their owner and younger brother. “Maybe they just got distracted or something,” Blynn said, turning to analyse the crowd from the back.
“But they were right behind us,” Hyren said. He still couldn’t see them. His grip on his sword tightened. “People don’t just disappear like that. Terraaaa!” His voice echoed across the lantern-canopied streets, absorbed into the noise of a celebrating city.
No one replied.