Chapter 81: Moving Along, Part III

Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Reads: 382


Lance strode into the kitchen, shivering as the barrier rippled away from him. He'd probably never get used to Razalek doorways...

He looked over to Zidane, a few screens in front of him. A burger was close by, the meal left virtually untouched.

"So, what," Lance asked, taking the seat across from Zidane and pulling a photo of the castle over to himself. "We breaking into his home and stealing it?"

Zidane hesitated for a split second before nodding. "Uh-yeah."

"Yeah?" Lance repeated, and then it registered. He leaned forward, standing up slightly. "Tell me I'm coming with you."

"I'd have to talk to Yittek," Zidane said, holding one hand up. "But right now, no, it's too dangerous."

"Fuck," Lance breathed. He sat down again, one hand to his forehead, fingertips threaded into his hair. "Are you serious? You really expect me to sit here while you do the dirty work?"

Zidane looked up from the photograph, and for a moment, Lance thought he saw the tiredness inside them. He thought he saw the lines, too, purple veins reaching out across the brush-strokes of fatigue.

"You really wanna go into territory made for reality-benders?"

Lance paused, caught off-guard by the question.

"I'd rather do it than sit here and wait to die."

Zidane sighed, bowing towards his hand as fingertips found closed eyes, massaging softly.

"Yittek," he called.

The Razalek appeared in a flurry of fire.

"It is something we need to discuss," he said, striding forward and taking the seat beside Lance.

"No shit," Lance breathed. He looked towards Zidane, towards the hidden guns, and motioned to them. "Teach me how to use one of those guns. Like rig it so it'll work against them or something. I'll be fine."

Zidane slowly looked to Yittek, one brow raising.

"It's definitely a discussion," Yittek said again.

"Would you stop saying that?"

Zidane placed a gun on the table, pushing it over to Lance. "Close one eye, squeeze the trigger, and relax with the kickback. There. Lesson over."

Lance grinned, taking the weapon. "Thanks."

The gun suddenly floated out of Lance's grasp. He swiped for it, narrowly missing as it flew to Yittek, rotating in front of him.

"I'll have to make some modifications, if you're going to use it."

Another grin took hold of Lance's expression. "So, I'm going."

Glances were exchanged.

"We're not here to babysit you," Zidane said. "And it'll be nice to have the company." He pulled up a map, some kind of territory illustration. "Assuming he has some kind of teleportation barrier, it's a fifty-five mile trek. It'll take us a few days, at least." Dark eyes looked into his, one brow raised. "You sure you're up for it?"

"Better than sitting 'round here..."

Lance looked over to Yittek, wanting his opinion, and nearly laughed at the amount of pieces Yittek had dismantled the gun into.

"Dude..." Lance grinned, one hand near his face, elbow on the table. Yittek looked over, deep eyes questioning. Lance shook his head. "Nothin'. Just... What're you doing?"

"Reducing the kickback and amplifying the firepower."


Lance caught Zidane's smile. "What?"

The crossbreed shook his head, going back to the images in front of him. "Nothing." He swept one hand up from the table, and pictures of Yowlitch appeared in front of Lance.

Lance grimaced. "He's a pretty ugly guy, isn't he?"

Yittek gave a muffled, smiling laugh. "In fact, Yowlitch is one of the most desired rulers in history."

"You mean there were others before him? How long do Razaleks live?"

"One-hundred-and-fifty-two-years," Zidane replied, glancing up. "On average."

Lance turned to Yittek, curiosity getting the better of him. "How old are you?"

Yittek stood, the gun quickly piecing itself back together. It fired at the ceiling, leaving crater-like holes that pierced in sunlight as the Razalek responded. "Sixty-eight."

Lance turned to Zidane, wanting to ask the same question when the crossbreed shook his head.

"I'm the exact age you think I am."

"So like fourteen?" Lance grinned.

Zidane twitched a smile back, and Lance pulled an image of Yowlitch in front of himself. "Okay, I'll get to work..."

By the time they were done, they had over a hundred images splayed out on the table. Lance put his forehead to his arms, which were laid down, and gave a quick groan. "Where is this guy keeping his shit?"

Zidane stretched his eyes out, hand taking a high photo. "Not sure, but hopefully we'll find it soon. The fact that Yittek was able to hack in and get the blueprints for his territory is amazing enough."

Lance shifted his head, mouth pressing against his forearms. He yawned, standing and pushing his chair back. "I'm gonna get something to eat. You want anything?"

Zidane shook his head, leaving Lance to quickly look at the burger on the table, still virtually untouched.

"'Cause you've been eating a lot."

Lance opened the fridge and bent down, surprised to find name-brand soda in there. He tried to smile, the expression extinguished by a barrage of memories.

He shut them all away, grabbing a bottle before grabbing another one. He walked back to the table, placing one next to Zidane's meal. The crossbreed remained oblivious, continuing to write in a foreign language with complex-looking symbols surrounding the text.

"What're you doing?"

"Math," he responded. "I'm trying to calculate how fast I would need to shade to break through the barriers surrounding his house."

Lance paused. "Wait, what?"

"There's different types of barriers," Zidane explained, leaning back and taking the writing as if he were viewing a tablet. "He's got the strongest kind I've seen. If I go fast enough, I can go through them. Perks of shading."

"Huh." Lance took his seat across from him. "Did you do that a lot when you were with Ezyta?"

Zidane nodded, and Lance didn't say anything more. He sipped from the soda, mulling over what a bitch the female Razalek was. Zidane's mouth flashed in a smile, mind picking up on the thought. Lance mimicked the expression. He reached for an image—a map of Yowlitch's territory.

"So how many days would it take us?" he asked as he did this.

"If we travel twenty-four miles a day, it'd take us about three days."

"Pretty long trip."

"Yeah." Zidane nodded. "But if we can steal from this guy, it'll be worth it."

"Definitely," Lance murmured, briefly raising his brows.

They were quiet after that, studying screens until finally the fatigue forced Lance away, retiring him for the night.

Zidane remained at the table, pouring over books, the screens of the Equilix. He didn't notice Yittek until the Razalek's soft but powerful voice reached his ears.

"Eat something, please, at the very least."

Zidane brought his stare away from the written words, his attention going to the pencil in his hand. He put the tip of the pencil between two fingers and twisting, the lead sharpen itself in a flurry of quick wood shavings. Zidane let out a breath, capturing the pieces and absorbing the energy into his palm. A little bit of life came back into him; enough for him to turn back to the paper he was reading.

His focus was short-lived; soon, he was staring at a plate full of fruit. The dish moved a little bit more, bumping into a book laid out in front of him.

He turned back to the paper. "I'm not hungry."

"When did you eat last?"

Zidane's mind reached back, taking a moment to figure it out. Some time yesterday morning, over forty-eight hours ago. He shook his head, straining to focus on the paper.

"I'm fine."

His stomach said otherwise, clenching in on itself. He suppressed a wince, focusing on the pain. Using it to push himself further, think harder. There had to be a way to counteract the cells... He just couldn't see it quite yet...

Yittek sat for a full minute, simply watching him. Zidane could only think; was this what Lance felt like all the time? Constantly under surveillance?

He nearly said something when Yittek stood, sending a bit of energy his way. Something that instantly drooped Zidane's eyes half-way closed.

"Get some sleep, Zidane. If you can."

"Yeah," Zidane murmured, hearing Yittek's steps fade into the hallway. Zidane quickly shook his head, fighting against the fatigue. He focused on the screens and papers again, allowing all the unanswered questions to envelop his thoughts.

Submitted: December 04, 2019

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