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    Cia
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.

Ancalagon - 94. Chapter 94

Sorry, I was off a day this week! Enjoy. :)

“Is he always that sarcastic?” Ases asked. “I never noticed that before. He always acts so serious and deadpan. Will his face crack if he tells a joke?”

“Maybe. We haven’t had a lot of opportunities to make jokes since we met.” I sat in a chair in the corner where Garjah had put me and Bouncer sat beside me, leaning against my hip and thigh. I stroked the base of his skull, and he arched his neck. I mindlessly stroked each itchy spot he presented, watching Garjah start interviewing all the attendees of the welcoming dinner.

Some people were indignant at being held, but he presented them with a stern face. A young woman was crying, eyeing the open windows fearfully, and he offered her an arm and led her to a seat at a table with her back to them before crouching beside her. With her, he lost the iron expression.

So maybe not everyone here was as suspicious as the rest. He only spent a moment with her before he moved on. Others were questioned more closely.

“He’s very good,” Ases said.

“Of course he is.” I paused, then frowned. “What do you mean?”

“Look at how he’s separating people. All those knots and groups that were clinched up have been pried apart and sent to different areas to be questioned by different guards.” Ases leaned closer. “And it may seem like he’s protecting the Kardoval with those men in front of them, but they’re being sequestered. They can’t influence anyone or plot.”

“Well, not in person at least.” Garjah kept moving around the room, speaking to some people in person and sending security officers to others. “And they’re not guards. Security officers, remember?”

“Right, right. I’d give my right arm to see what they’re doing with that tech. See those two.” Ases pointed with his hand tucked alongside his thigh, and it took me a minute to follow the angle. Two older Four Arms were waving their hands in front of comm pads. But they weren’t normal ones. These were bigger, worn on forearm sleeves, and it looked like their screen extended three-dimensionally with a virtual interface.

“Huh.” Could those be used to map an area and capture all plants and animals for later study in more detail? That would be so useful! I narrowed my eyes; maybe it was only security who had them. I did have an in with the head of security though. I could sweet talk Garjah into giving me one—or bribe him with my body.

“That kind of grin does not belong on your face. It’s creepy, especially now,” Ases hissed.

“What?” His sudden jab in my ribs startled me, and Bouncer snarled at Ases. He jerked back.

“Hey, chill big guy. We made friends, remember?” Ases said to Bouncer. He didn’t sound afraid but he left space between us anyway. Bouncer huffed at him. “Hey, he was the one with the creepy face while we are being watched. I’m just looking out for him.”

“Who’s watching us?” Beside the obvious. The Kardoval had bounced between us and Garjah the whole time. That wasn’t news, and I doubted Ases would point that out.

Ases was a master of subtle pointing. “That group over there. There’s an older one with two younger people.”

“Like kids? I didn’t think kids were invited.” I shifted in my chair, stretching in a bid to get a better look.

“They’re pretty young. He’s got a good grip on them too.” The older Four Arms he was talking about wasn’t looking at me, but the younger ones were. Intently.

Garjah was busy, and I had no way to signal him. “Let’s keep an eye on them keeping an eye on us. As long as they stay over there, it might just be curiosity. They don’t have aliens like us come here. Remember how isolated their home planet is. Even with a strict isolation policy, they have a port with security features to protect the rest of the planet from incursion.”

“Maybe I’m just jumpy. I keep wondering if the next person I look at is the one who sent those things in here.”

I leaned in close to him. “They probably think we did it.”

“Us,” he waved a finger between us, “or the rebels?”

I shrugged. “Either? Both?”

Lights began to flash on one of the screen in the corner. “Sir!” The officer called for Garjah, and he marched over, instantly abandoning the interrogation of the pale and shaky Four Arm who looked relieved not to be facing him anymore.

“I’ve tracked back the trail of the projectile balls. They were clearly guided, not passive release. They were being operated by someone in the south garden.” The officer pointed out two rooms. “They tracked through here and here, which had multiple staff members but the balls didn’t release.”

“Do we have footage of the garden?”

“It’s been corrupted.”

Garjah growled and I was the only one who didn’t flinch. Well, me and Bouncer. He left me and went over to Garjah. The remains of the balls were near the tech who’d been trying to track their path, and he took a sniff. He sneezed, blowing out a blast of air and shaking his head so hard his ears snapped, but then he lifted his head. He looked over his shoulder, first at me, then the door.

Oh, stars. “Garjah.” I tried to warn him, but I was too late.

Bouncer took off at a run, scattering people from his path and turning them room into a screaming, chaotic mass of people trying to escape again.

“If anyone shoots him, I will shoot them,” Garjah bellowed at the officers.

Copyright © 2020 Cia; All Rights Reserved.
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Stories posted in this category are works of fiction. Names, places, characters, events, and incidents are created by the authors' imaginations or are used fictitiously. Any resemblances to actual persons (living or dead), organizations, companies, events, or locales are entirely coincidental.
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This chapter, to me, confirms that Bouncer is not only sentient, but highly intelligent.  Bouncer doesn't act immediately, but is very aware of everything happening at the dinner and thru the attack.  He doesn't jump to action until two things occur.  The first is the knowledge that the material in the bombs are now inert.  The second is when he learns the precise coordinates of the place where the bombs were launched.  Both bits of information were spoken.  That means Bouncer understands language.  He also has some intelligence and experience to probably use his sense of smell to not only tract the bomber, but to also identify the intentions of other people.  

I have not doubt that Bouncer can find the bombers as long as they leave a scent trail.  Garjah needs to head out after him with some of the security team to assist Bouncer before Bouncer poisons them then tears them all to tiny pieces.  

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If I remember correctly, did not Bouncer approch Essell on the other planet without being threatened by Essell?  It is possible that Bouncer is also from another world who can change into other forms of life to "blend in" so to speak?  He has become Essell's protector and has shown no threat to him.  Something is much different now about Bouncer.  Is he now a tracking entiy?  Is he a form of protector of some sort to those that he senses are needing to be secure.  I think there could be a lot more about Bouncer that we do not know yet.  I am thinking Bouncer may be just the one thing that will get Essell and Ases more of what they are needing with bringing the two worlds together.  Just wild and wishful hinking on my part.   We will know soon what Bouncer finds in the garden.  What things will be happening next?  There must be a sleeper agent within the building as well.  Just suppose those two young ones are the sleeper agents.  WIth so many different people around who have the ability to change their looks and forms.   What evils are lurking in the shadows for Essell and Ases and possibly Garjah?

 

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