“Is that blue woman still loopy as hell down there?” Moony asked his partner when he came up from the prison cell room.
Sunny nodded once. He knew that Annette had to be suffering in her current state, but he wasn’t certain if there was anything anyone could do for her.
“Guess we still have to supply her with tea and biscuits, then. At least The Builder isn’t here to laugh at her, or something-”
He was then interrupted by a high-pitched keening. Before he could ask what was going on, he saw Ox-Head dashing towards the two of them on all fours.
Ox-Head then ran behind Moony, shaking terribly. Irritated now, Moony tried to shoo him away.
“Aw, now wha’s gotten into ye?! And don’t stand so close, ye bampot! Ye smell like a backed-up urinal! What’s going on?”
Pointing toward the doorway, Ox-Head fell onto his back and trembled like he was cold. He then began to bite his nails.
Sunny took a step back when he and Moony saw what Ox-Head was pointing at.
“I still can’t believe they let Mister Harwood through,” Blaise told Dennis as the other four made their way down the hall. “Even after his towel came loose.”
Dennis just nodded. “Naked old man or not, it’s good to see what hotels in other towns look like. Makes me wonder why we don’t have a proper hotel back in Twinbrook.”
After that, Blaise and Dennis broke off to look for the vending machines, leaving Marc and Harwood alone to find a particular room.
When they did, Harwood took a deep breath and let Marc into the hotel room.
“Well, Marc,” he said, “this is the place. This is the hotel room I got with your mother.” Harwood then placed his hand on the wall. “And it doesn’t look like it’s changed a bit, except for the more advanced technology.”
Marc just sat on the bed, amazed in a bizarre way. “So this was the place where I was made?”
“Yes, indeed!” Harwood then smirked at where Marc was sitting. “And I think that was the exact spot you were conceived.”
When this bit of information was said, Marc quickly jumped back off the bed. All Harwood could do to this reaction was chuckle.
The three assistants tried getting back as the deformed clone dragged himself slowly towards them. The poor man’s legs were amputated, and his eyes appeared to be gouged out.
Groaning in pain, the Julian clone reached out, trying to form words to say to them. What he could say was garbled, and mostly incoherent.
Moony reached behind him, trying not to trip over Ox-Head, and grabbed a frying pan to throw at the clone.
Still shivering uncontrollably, Ox-Head pointed at the clone with a shaking finger. “What’s the scary version of Andromeda’s friend trying to say?”
When Moony shushed him, he then strained to hear what the Julian clone was trying to say.
“He’s tryin’ to say…’Kill me-‘”
But he didn’t catch the last word. Before the clone could finish, his head exploded in a mess of skull and grey matter.
Huddled in the doorway now was Horse-Face, holding a glock pistol. Dropping it, he then collapsed to the floor and proceeded to cry.
“I’m sorry…!” He wailed now. “I’m a monster, I’m so sorry…” The other three assistants could only stare at him.
Sagebear watched as Sebastian scanned the darkened room. He looked determined to find anything that seemed the least bit out of place.
Interestingly, he didn’t seem to notice the grey dog sitting on the couch. After a little more searching, he then left the premises.
After he was gone, Sagebear just kept staring at the window to see if he’d come back. When he didn’t, she turned her head to look in the kitchen.
“Boy! Getting this was easier than I thought!” The man wearing the glasses said when he came back holding something draped over his arms. He pulled one free and motioned for her to come to him. “Come here, doggy.”
Sagebear then leapt off the couch, doing what she was told. When she got close enough, the young man tied the fabric he had to her collar.
“There you go. Now go on home, doggy. I don’t want your owners to get worried about you.”
Opening the door again, he gently led her back outside.
“So did ya get all the snacks you wanted out of that machine?” Blaise asked Dennis when the two of them left the hotel. Apparently, Harwood and Marc wanted some time to bond as father and son, and had gone out to the graveyard.
Dennis held up the small bag of candy bars and chips. “That I did! I just hope I got all the kinds that everyone wanted when we get back.”
On their way back to the house, Dennis and Blaise were then stopped by Sagebear running up the sidewalk to them. She had a blanket affixed to her collar.
“Well, hello there, puppy!” Dennis said as he bent down to pet her. “Did you come looking for us? Now aren’t you a sweetie!” He then pulled at the blanket she had. “And it looks like one of the townsfolk gave you a gift! Isn’t that sweet!”
Blaise then picked up Sagebear, nuzzling their noses together as they kept walking. “I guess she wanted us to come home early. Is that what ya wanted, puppy?”
The graveyard was beautiful, and well tended to. Harwood felt out of place as he followed Marc to a particular section.
He would have felt out of place even with clothes on, but that was beside the point. Keeping his head down, he tried not to knock anything over or step on anything.
Soon, Marc stopped in front of a gravestone, and got on his knees to read the fading engraving.
“Here she is,” he murmured to Harwood as he got down next to him. Then to the gravestone, he said, “Hey, Mama. I brought Dad with me.”
Harwood put a hand on Melanie’s tombstone, and sighed heavily. “Long time no see, Melanie. I have to say, you’ve done an amazing job raising our son.”
For some time after that, both of them spoke to the gravestone of Marc’s mother. Something about doing so seemed to bring some kind of relief and peace to them both.