Cannibal Chameleons: Ch-3

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic

The Library

~Cannibal Chameleons~

-Ch-3: The Library-


Veracity rolled out of bed with a yawn, his mind trying to hold onto the visions that consumed him before he awoke. He looks about the room and notices the book he read the night before is missing.

As a light sleeper he thought it nearly impossible for someone to enter his chambers and take an item.

He dresses in his uniform, its jet black with gold trim, a black cloak drapes over his back, his shining black sheath holds his sword with the majestic handle and shining chrome hilt. He combed his hair back before hearing a knock at the door.


An untouchable enters, he immediately bows his head. He's a rather large man with dark eyes, his hair is buzzed short and he has a beard growing down to his chest.

Veracity grasps his shoulder, “Well if it isn't my good friend Paradise!”

Paradise smiles, “I heard you dealt with the corruption?”

“Yes, two guards unworthy of their status.”

Paradise looked Veracity top to bottom, “Looks like it went well.”

“Annie was a good swordsman, she nearly gave me a shave.”, they both exited the room and walked down the corridor into the grand hall, “Any word from the saints?”

Paradise grabbed Veracity and pulled him close, “I hear an untouchable has been dishing out justice, what he deems to be good and evil.”

“What do you mean?”

“He's been doing patrols and executing people that are outside the contract, hes delivering justice on his own terms.”


“Krisis...”, Veracity stopped dead in his tracks with wide eyes. Paradise continued, “The saints know he is top tier, they haven't decided how to go about it, we're just waiting on the word. Krisis knows he can take any one of the untouchables in a one on one, he has takin matters into his own hands.”

Veracity said softly, “How long has this been going on for?”

“Quite awhile. Its said he torched a town in the wastelands and executed every woman and child, his reasoning, filth breeds filth... The saints overlooked his actions till now, hes to valuable to the order but its getting out of hand. Its said a few others have banded with him creating their own order.”

“How come I've never heard of this?”

Paradise scratches at his beard, “I don't think this matter should be public, we don't want the untouchables to earn a bad name. In the meantime we're waiting for the saints to deliberate what course of action should be takin. In the meantime don't stray too far, we could be called upon anytime today.”

Veracity stood silent. Krisis was one of the first to join the order when the untouchables were created by the saints, his strength and skill made him a formidable opponent, fighting him would be suicide.

Paradise slapped Veracity on the back, “Don't think too much, I have to go into town and check with the guard.” Veracity watched him walk out the massive doors that led into the grand hall.


-The Library-


Branching off the massive hall was a wide entrance that led into a Library with endless shelves, every book you could imagine resides here, endless knowledge and scholars that spend every waking moment of their lives with noses stuck in books. Veracity walked past the book keepers desk and heard a loud “Kaw!”, he looked over to see a massive raven perched on a polished wooden pull that had been elevated above the desk.

A feminine voice found Veracity's ears, “I don't see you very often.”

He turns his head and sees a beautiful woman with long black hair and steel blue eyes gazing upon him intently, “I have time to kill, figured I'd have a look.”

She replied dryly, “Can I help you with something?”

Veracity hesitated before talking, “Last night someone had placed a book in my room, I was just curious if someone had checked it out.”

The woman walked over to the desk and pulled out a ledger, “Title?”

“I believe it was, 'The Ancients'”

She flipped the ledger open and began to thumb through the pages, “No such book has been checked out.”

Veracity scratched at his head, “The strange thing is, when I awoke the book was gone.”

The book keep didn't seem very interested, “Can I help you with anything else?”

“If you don't mind me asking, what is your name?”

She replied with an annoyed tone, “I don't think this is the time or place for that...”, she pauses for a moment, “this book was returned recently, you might like it.”, she hands him an old leather bound book titled, (Slums Paradise), “You got time to kill right?”

Veracity looked up from the book, “I suppose your right, do I need to check it out?”

“You can read it now if you like, just don't leave with it.”

“Thank you, I think I will.”, the woman smiled and went about her business.

Veracity made his way to a seat and watched the woman for a bit, she was very familiar somehow, her beauty had him enchanted.

He slowly opened the book and began to read...


~Slums Paradise~

Where do I start? That's an important question. I guess I'll start at the end and walk you through it.
At the moment I'm sitting on my porch with a genocidal war criminal. The man I give this title to is far from that person, that's another life, another story. This man was a savior and an important part of my life.
My name is Moses, I live within the worst slums in Villvidia, sewage runs in the streets and garbage is piled everywhere. Uneducated drug addicts, disease and crime run rampant. I call this place home, a place where outsiders don't dare to walk or even look. People govern themselves, we have no law.

Rain falls steady on the thin pieces of rumpled tin that make the awning of the porch. The slums are transformed into a swamp of trash and excrement. Children play within these conditions, sometimes you see them swimming within the garbage that lines the shores. Some buildings have rubbish piled around the perimeter from people throwing junk out the windows, this was stacked high enough to cover the first floor of the buildings. Endless waves of destroyed people walk down the dirt roads. The neighborhood was always bad, but it has gotten progressively worst. You might think, (Why not leave and live elsewhere?)
That's a good thought and all, but honestly I don't know where I would go.
My life story doesn't make much sense in a lot of obvious ways, I warn you ahead of time, the thing is,
reality never makes much sense.

When I was twelve my Father still lived with us, he was a drug addict to the core. He was very much like a child, he would throw temper tantrums under tiny amounts of stress. He wasn't strong enough to play the assigned role of a father, some people just can't play that part. He only liked to receive and cried when not catered to, he never returned a favor or contributed a scrap of anything, he was irremediable. The infantile adult had one philosophy to everything, “Deal with it.”
The house was in shambles, it ended up being, essentially, an opium den. His junkie friends used the place as a hangout.
Mom tried her hardest to play the role of homemaker but that was impossible when you lived in a junkies trash can. She was a series of nervous breakdowns, her escape ended up being drugs as well.
It's amazing how fast health slips, one day your healthy as an ox the next you're dead on the floor. Arteriosclerosis causing a tear in the coronary, this led to my fathers death, thing is, he wasn't even old, my mother said God hated him, I believed her. Health was just a clock running out of time, enjoy it while you got it, don't take it for granted.
Despite my fathers death the junkies still used our house for getting high, there wasn't anything we could do to remove them.
I never stayed around the house much, the environment was terrible. I ended up playing with a girl that was the same age as me, she had black hair and beautiful blue eyes, her name was Jessica. One day we were playing and it started getting dark, we had found a long black metal fence with thick black bars. I pushed my face between the bars, “What do you think is over there?”
Jessie started acting like she was scared, she wanted to feel scared, even went as far to rationalize and justify it. “I don't think its safe here, at night I hear dogs, they are not nice either.”
“You're a liar!” I shouted.
“Shhhh... listen.” We were both frozen still listening carefully. At the first loud noise she shrieked and we both ran and hid behind a rusty metal shack. We were both breathing heavily, she kept peeking around the corner like we had been chased. Both our faces were flush, the evening air was cool, we stood there quietly for a moment and without thinking I kissed her. She stood there silent, processing information before spitting on the ground, “I hate you Moses!”.
I didn't say a word, she ran off and I didn't see her for a long time. Now that I think about it, it probably was gross, I possibly had dirt and garbage on my face.

~Fast forward five years~

My mother couldn't handle reality, she was slowly becoming a lunatic. I didn't help either, I was getting into drugs, Jessica was too. We prodigiously consumed large amounts of drugs. Jessica had grown into a healthy drug addict, a strong street smart peasant, a goddess in disguise. I became fatally obsessive, I couldn't stand the thought of her not being around. Jessie didn't think much of herself, to me she was everything, her mind was exceptional, at least I thought it was. Love at first sight comes to mind. We had the same interests and problems, drugs and the lack of them.
She ended up being my neighbor, Jessie and her grandmother moved there after her mother had died.
When I was younger love had a completely different meaning, it was an incredible feeling and experience. Jessica ended up leaving me for someone that had money, I had the feeling she may have loved the drugs more than me, I couldn't blame her. The thought of her with someone else somehow made me want her more, I wanted to take back what was mine, but she wasn't an object. I guess what I wanted wasn't tangible. It warped into a frantic loving vengeance. My definition of love must have been a lust at the time, in that case do you even truly love someone? I suppose I looked at her like a dog does food. She was my property in my mind, but you can't own people like that, like she was just a tool that I used when I needed it. Knowing how to love without possessing was a true art, but what I had was a fire being slowly extinguished with despair. Time had no pity, I knew the moment was coming when she would finally leave. I was laying with her, holding her in the face of oblivion, our story was already written and was coming to an end. That final embrace was numbing, there was no feeling between us. That was the day love changed into a different creature, I would have to discover what it had become. I just blankly stared straight ahead as she callously broke off anything we had, her words became muffled incoherent murmurs to my ears, I was angry. In those moments every thought and action is justified, looking back at it it is quite childish. To be young and rush into such emotional complexities, a learning experience at a cut throat level, a test of mental endurance.
The day Jessica left me, she looked the same but I no longer knew who she was, it was like she was possessed and I had lost her forever, she was suddenly gone... Jessie never went back home after that day, occasionally her grandmother would ask about her, I didn't know or care, I was bitter.
When love escapes you and leaves for good you never see it in the same form, love becomes something else, something less defined.
I became a walking hazard, I mixed in with the wrong crowd and shooting guns became a common theme. Fear was a new hideous fun, death blood and guts, violence and glory. We formed a detachment to death, nobody could tell me a fuckin thing. We literally had nothing to lose, our futures were hopeless, our environment was a landfill. This landscape was a cancer on the land, it was a smelly open wound. Death became a beautiful fantasy, an escape into the unknown, the final frontier. Everything had lost meaning, life was a simple quiet moment in the here and now. Indescribable depressions with a death-wish, staring in the face of an infinite eternity. The moment death was at your doorstep it became the manifestation of the grim reaper in physical form. The only way I could confront it without fear was through agony, I wanted to beg for it.
Until one fateful day...
My mother had brought a strange man home, as far as she knew he was just another guy at rock bottom living in garbage filled streets. Showing compassion she offered him a meal and a place to stay for the night. He was a big man, he wasn't horribly dressed, he had cold dark eyes and a beard that went down to his chest, he had dark slicked back hair. He walked through the front door and took one long glance, his face was a statue. He walked past the junkies and without a word flipped the kitchen table. It was a junkies nightmare, precious drugs disappeared into the abyss of filth. A girl jumped up and started bitching.
“Who the fuck do you think you are!” she screamed. He smacked her so hard she went limp and collapsed to the floor, her boyfriend apologized and carried her out the house. My friends left the house laughing at the sight. He grabbed another junkie by the neck and threw him out the door. He must have known who I was, I went to leave and he put a hand on my chest.
I immediately got defensive,“What the fuck is this, who are you?” I looked to my Mom, she was shocked. “This is my home mother fucker, you can get the fuck out!” He didn't move an inch, I pulled out my pistol and before I could aim it at him he knocked it out my hand and beat me to a pulp, my Mom was screaming. He looked at my mother with those dark unforgiving eyes and she instantly became quiet.
“Cook.” The only monosyllable word he spoke that whole night. My mother instantly started dinner. He had me by the neck, blood streaming down my face, he back handed me one last time before lifting me by the collar and throwing me into a dirty rickety chair against the wall. He grabbed my pistol off the floor and flipped the table upright. I was still dazed, my eye swollen. He pushed me up to the table and that night we all ate quietly.
Later that night I went to leave and he was on the porch silently smoking tobacco out a shiny black pipe, all he did was glance at me with those dark eyes, I silently went back inside.

This man was a stoic, the king of hypocrisy, the harbinger of discipline. I learned his story from others, he was a military leader by the name of “Paradise”, the great bringer of death, he never showed a hint of remorse, men women and children butchered. After the war ended he just slipped away and showed up in the slums, people recognized him and they steered clear of our home. From that day forward without an invitation he became a permanent resident.

I woke to the nudge of a boot, Paradise looming over me. “Today, I want this place spotless.” he said in a calm even tone. I went to protest and watched his fists clench, my swollen eye still ached, needless to say I spent the day cleaning. My mother and I had become captives in our own home. He sent my mother to the market to get dinner, she came home and you could tell she had been doing drugs, the pains from dope sickness were affecting the both of us. Paradise rifled through her personal belongings.
“Whats this?” he stared at her with eyes that could kill. He slapped her into tears, she was shook, shaking like a leaf in the cold wind. I had cold sweats and pains running through my body, I summoned the strength to defend my mother, my right hook was caught effortlessly, there was a white flash before my eyes. When I came to I was on the floor, the taste and smell of blood. Paradise had just finished eating, he wet a rag and threw it in my lap, he proceeded to go outside and smoke his pipe.
For the next week my mother and I sat within the house laying about in agony. A man bigger than Paradise had been bringing groceries to the house on the daily. Apparently he was an ex-soldier that was commanded by the lunatic, these people had no where to go when the war ended, some of them found there way to Villvidia, which led them to Paradise.

Paradise had an affinity for us, he was much kinder to my mother than me, he looked at me like I was an animal. “You will learn what it is to be human.” he said this as the hulking ex-soldier placed a desk in the corner. “Sit.”
I sat at the desk and he dropped a water stained book with wavy pages in front of me.
“You will learn.” he said.
“I can't read.”
He repeated, “You will learn.”
Later that night the hulking ex-soldier joined us at the table, Paradise introduced him.
“This is my good friend Simmy, he will be staying with us.” my mother smiled, “Nice to meet you, my home is your home.” I didn't say a word, I could feel those dark eyes like flames burning a hole through my head.
I murmured “Nice to meet you.”
Simmy smiled, with a deep voice he said “Thank you for the hospitality, shall we?”
“Of course, everyone help themselves.” Paradise said in a calm voice.
My mother seemed happy, Simmy talked with her throughout the night delivering a sense of normalcy. Paradise sat on the porch in an old wooden chair smoking a pipe watching the sunset. I was thinking about my friends and what trouble they were up to, they didn't dare come around my home. I laid on my thin foam mattress staring at the ceiling lost in thought, I would say I was bored but Paradise kept me busy.

Over the next few weeks Paradise was commanding quite a few people, all ex-soldiers. He moved my mother next door to stay with Jessica's Grandmother. Our house was dismantled and rebuilt with actual structure, rooms were added, the roof would no longer leaking and drywall was mounted. Paradise walked to the houses surrounding our house and assessed the situation. Some of the rusty metal shacks were so run down he personally condemned them, he kicked the inhabitants out into the streets.
“If I see you come back here you will pay with your life!” he said this vehemently.

The trash and debris were removed, the old shacks dismantled, new and improved buildings built in there place. Jessie's Grandmother moved into our home and Simmy left to live in hers. The buildings formed a square perimeter housing a courtyard in the middle. The outer homes soon became occupied by Ex-soldiers who caught word that Paradise was providing a home for any of his comrades.
I worked relentlessly with them to complete the project. Each home was painted with vibrant colors, our little area had become quite nice compared to what I had grown to know.
Paradise came to me while I was busy working.
“I can't make you learn, but you have an option.” I understood completely, I didn't want to sit around learning, I would regret my decision later. He had signed me up to work with the locals, it was the slums garbage men, we spent long days hauling trash with wooden carts that were pulled and pushed by hand, the pay was minuscule and the labor strenuous.
I received my first pay, I was walking home and it was late. I watched a young kid walking in and out of the shadows in the street, he reminded me of myself when I was that age, he was strung out on drugs and needed more, he was going to do anything he could. I crossed the uneven dirt road and he quickly followed, there was more than one of them, there was no where to run. I found myself looking down the barrel of a revolver, I instantly handed over what little money I had. They glanced at each other with malevolent eyes and smiles, they were going to shoot me. I swatted the gun as he pulled the trigger, it nearly went off in my face, a hot cloud of powder and a misaligned barrel led to facial burns and lead shavings from the bullet being embedded in my cheek. The pair of thieves ran off, I walked home holding my face as onlookers watched, faces unwavering. Gun shots and death were so common most people didn't even flinch, it was everyday life.

A man by the name of Dia did his best to dig the fragments out my cheek, he had a big scar on his face and a black mustache, he was slowly chewing a toothpick inspecting the wound.
“You'll be fine, trust me I've seen much worse.” Paradise was furious, he walked out the house and gathered together twenty men armed with automatic rifles. That night there was more shooting than usual. I woke just before dawn to paradise lightly kicking me with a boot.
“Get up, lets go.” I didn't say a word. We walked through the north end of town where the slums opened up into a garbage ridden field where the kids played soccer.
There were about thirty people gathered, they were all junkies, some skinny and in terrible health, some wounded, I even recognized a few. The ex-soldiers quietly standing by, guns fixed on their targets, if anyone moved they were to be shot dead.
Paradise hinted at the wound on my face, “You see him?”
I walked slowly past them studying their faces, he must of seen me before I seen him, he was visibly nervous. I stopped dead in front of him, I stared into his eye's, they were scared and glossed over. Paradise put a heavy chrome revolver in my hand. I had never just executed someone like this, I hesitated. Paradise grabbed the gun and shot the kid dead between the eyes, his body went limp and folded to the ground instantly. Paradise shouted:
“Spread the word, if we see any criminal activity, we shoot to kill, if I see any of your faces in my neighborhood your're dead!” He walked past the group of junkies one more time, the ones that showed no fear he made signals at as he walked by, they were marked for death. Simmy walked up and put the barrel of the AK in the victims face and pulled the trigger, nose lips and chin obliterated, lungs hissed air past the leaking wound as the body crumpled to the ground. Multiple guns went off as we walked back to the house. The remainder ran like terrified animals into the labyrinth of the slums.
I sat on the porch waiting for the sun to rise, I couldn't sleep, Paradise smoked his pipe. I didn't move until it was time for me to go to work.
The day was long and hard, my heart wasn't in it. When I started home I seen Simmy and Dia with automatic rifles slung over their shoulders waiting for me, we walked home as the sun set. We heard a few gun shots here and there but nothing close. Then there was a scream, a teenager with a death wish robbed a woman at gun point and went to run across the street. Simmy took aim and put two rounds through his torso, the bullets ripped the flesh making two fat cavities. Simmy smiled and smacked my arm. “Got em!”
Dia let out an excited shout.
We walked over to where he collapse, his eyes squinting in pain, he was breathing heavily, red foams of blood pushing past gritted teeth. He didn't live long, he bled out quickly. Simmy grabbed the junkies pistol and we continued home.
Sitting on the porch like clockwork was Paradise. Simmy and Dia went next door and I sat on the porch exhausted.
“I'm ready to learn.” I said quietly.
“What was that?”
“I said I'm ready to learn.” Paradise faintly smiled and smoked his pipe.
“Tomorrow you will learn.” My mother walked outside and handed me leftovers, I quietly ate and went to bed.
I never thought comfort would come from war hardened murderers, that night I was sound asleep. Paradise had his men walk the streets in groups of two on constant patrols.
When I awoke, Paradise was in the process of having a piano put in the dining room, a skinny man with glasses set a rifle down in the corner and began to play. Jessie's Grandmother loved the piano, the music was a great distraction. My mother sat down at the table and listened with a smile, Paradise looked satisfied, he turned and said to me, “You will learn to play.”
I didn't have an option so I just slowly nodded.
The man with the thick framed glasses was named Flint, he had short dark hair, he was skinny and tall. He would teach me how to play piano and read. I soon found out that he wasn't quite right in the head.
He spent days going over the alphabet and showing me how to write. I eventually began to sound out words like a child, Flint was very supportive and encouraging. I became a word chaser, I would look up the definition of a word and within the definition was three other words I didn't know, my quest for meaning had me lost going in vicious circles. Flint could sense my frustration and he bounced me back and forth between piano and literature. I wasn't any better at playing piano, sometimes the house would clear out, no one could handle the musical genocide I was creating.
Flint claimed to be the reincarnations of many great ancient philosophers, he would read all his past life literature and endlessly bask in his own apparent genius.
He said, “Even philosophies greats were inspired by great thinkers like me, everything has its time, and everything is an influence to something else, originality is a myth.”

Flint handed me a book, I said, “Have you read this?”
Flint replied, “God no, I don't like story books, they are unrealistic, nobody ever go's to the bathroom.”
“Then why do I have to read it?”
“It's an easy read, something to help you learn.” Just then Dia walked by the window holding his stomach, “Man I really gotta take a shit.”
Days passed slowly, I began to get lost in my imagination, at that moment I forgot where I was until Flint snapped his fingers in my face.
“Start stringing together words and make sure you know what you are saying just in case someone is paying attention.” My vocabulary began to grow and I started writing poetry. Flint said life was poetical by nature, all words were extensions of emotions, it was a compliment to the consciousness to make reality into a meaningful poetry.
“The created structure of language is inadequate to capture the senses, you have to try your best to mix written words with non-existent emotion. Do you know what I mean?” I thought for a minute.
“Is it like people being forced to speak with a limited dull vocabulary so everything is mechanical and missing that inner feeling?”
“It is tiresome speaking in metaphors because written language lacks the senses.” Flint stared out the window his mind slowly floating away, sometimes I was sure he didn't hear me talk. He found children and adults horribly boring, complex thoughts and wisdom was the treasures he sought after, Flint found this in solitude. Beside teaching me I never seen him. Being alone was an art, harboring thoughts and experiences that were never to be shared with a soul, slowly drifting further into the absolute.
“Hey, Flint.”

He seemed to come to out a haze. “Ends are inevitable and silence is a universal language.” he let out a long sigh, before rambling on. “In this life you don't need to go anywhere, its all within. If something isn't working simply change it. You have the capacity to make life what you want it to be. It doesn't matter if you do that here or somewhere else, it's all the same. It is the collective experience of one, take what you can get, ultimately it is just you. If you want to end your frustrations and conflicts enlighten yourself. Through self knowledge you will find yourself. You will differentiate good from bad. You can still do good things and be a rotten person, most good doing is a product of society, it's not from the heart. You do these things because you were taught to, you should simply do good things not because its a special occasion or holiday, you should do good always, it shouldn't be a burden. Don't pretend to be something you're not, don't be nice for the sake of being nice, be real, no one needs that fake smile, your pity charity. Breakdown the aspects of self through awareness and self knowledge, correct your behavior and be aware of every action before its taken, actions should never be senseless. My last piece of advice is to take the paths in life that have heart, if you don't you will never find anything meaningful.” As he stood he knocked my pencil behind the desk. “Finish that book and write about what you read, I'll see you tomorrow.” He walked out the room silently.
I tried to read but couldn't concentrate, the thought of the pencil behind the desk haunted my mind, before I could go any further I had to get up pull the desk from the wall and retrieve the writing
The next day flint walked in looking drained, he looked gripped with a depression.
“Women don't care for the artist or the poet... I wonder why man is so much more poetic. Man seems to be more sensitive in the heart and mind. Why is Man the hopeless romantic... Can you recall any female pouring her heart out in any manner of the sort? They don't seem to appreciate things on a deeper level. Is it that they already know and it doesn't need to be said?”
I replied, “Maybe its because they didn't spend centuries looking after delicate men that they could drool over endlessly admiring their beauty.”
He sighed again, “You could be right, they are quite cold hearted.”
“Did something happen?” I asked.
“ I was talking with a girl and she didn't seem to understand a word I was saying, she was just staring right through me. It occurred to me that she was an imbecile.”
“Have you seen where we live? What did you expect?”

He just let out a long sigh.“One day it will collapse, the universe collapses all the time, but only on the individual.” After he said that he walked out the room, I learned nothing from him that day. I didn't see him again for quite sometime, he seemed to disappear.
In the meantime Paradise had brought home roles of wallpaper. I told him how Flint had just left and he assured me that was a common theme for him to sulk.
“Since you're not learning you will learn to wallpaper the house.” Needless to say I wallpapered the house. It was actually really nice looking, it was a luxury not many had, I was positive we had the nicest house in the slums.
Eventually wires and electricity found there way to my home, we had a string of cheap bulbs hanging around the inside perimeter of our court yard. We would gather in the courtyard at night with the soldiers around a fire pit, they would drink and tell stories, some were pretty good at playing tunes with a guitar. Paradise liked the front porch, he didn't mingle with people often and he didn't drink.
“Why don't you join them around the fire?” I asked one evening.
“Old age has other things to think about.” He cleared his pipe and packed it with tobacco, as he smoked the embers softly whispered. Composure was his main attribute, life was a bitter affair and he became my mothers rock.

“I never thanked you for everything you've done for me and my mother.” Paradise didn't move a muscle, it was like the words didn't exist. I stopped talking and we both sat there quietly listening to the guitars melody softly flowing over the roof.

~The End~

Veracity closed the book and thought to himself, (Paradise...)

Before he could finish the thought he heard Paradise's voice, “The saints want all the untouchables to gather in the inner sanctum.”

Veracity nodded his head and stood, he placed the book on the keepers desk and glanced back at her while she was placing tombs on a shelf, he let out a sigh and the two made their way down the corridor.



Submitted: November 21, 2022

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