Sinbad was still relatively damp when The Builder returned. Over their shoulder was a corpse still dripping with blood and brain matter, out of a gaping hole from his head.
“Sorry about that, sir!” They told him in an unfittingly chirpy voice. “One of your son’s clones got out, and he had to die.”
This just made Sinbad grit his teeth. He was so tired of people mentioning children in relation to him.
“How many times do I have to tell you schmucks? I don’t have kids, and I don’t want kids! Why is that so fucking hard for people to comprehend?”
In response to this, The Builder held up the Julian clone by the back of the neck, and had Sinbad face it.
“Really now? So you telling me this resemblance is purely coincidental?”
Before Sinbad could snap back, The Builder ripped the clone’s face off, then proceeded to chew on it like a wad of beef jerky. Quickly, though, they spat it back out.
“Ew! The llama was right! Raw face is gross!”
-an unspecified amount of time later…-
Annette internally breathed a sigh of relief as she stopped the recording. She felt a short while after Shark and Harwood were done was the right time to stop.
Now Shark lay on the bedsheets, shivering and curled up in his own filth. He stared off into space, apparently trying to repress the events that just happened. Harwood sat next to him, running his fingers through Shark’s hair as if to reassure him.
“Meiguanxi, Shark,” he whispered. “It’s over now. We did what they told us to do.”
Shark didn’t answer him. His lip started trembling, like the rest of him. At some point, he swallowed.
Standing up and setting the camera down, Annette approached the bed. She took hold of a sheet corner and pulled it over Shark’s naked body. Harwood gave her a questioning look.
“I thought he was cold,” she told him. This answer seemed to satisfy him, as he nodded and looked back at a now covered Shark.
“Xie xie,” he whispered to her. He then looked off to the side, as if in thought. “Eh…Is anything said in this room staying in this room?”
“Well, besides that video, I guess.” Annette was then gently pulled closer, as Harwood took the palm of her hand and turned it upwards.
Right away, he began tracing his finger into letters on her hand. He bit his lip a little as he did so.
“Normally, I’d abstain from doing this, since everyone who knows this name is dead now, but… You aren’t normal, are you?”
Annette just shrugged. “You have no idea.”
To this, Harwood just gave a single chuckle. “It’s strange, though. Usually I can tell if someone is a gui ren, or a xiao ren. But you? I don’t know. It’s almost as if you’re both.”
He then stopped talking, and pulled away from her. Annette then turned away from him, and slowly closed the palm he’d been writing in.
Somehow, she felt a powerful feeling wash over her, as she silently mouthed out the name that he’d spelled for her:
“Am I really allowed in here?” Ox-Head inquired as Horse-Face led him into a secret passage. “You’re not going to beat me with a big wooden crucifix, are you?”
“Of course not,” Horse-Face responded. “Just don’t tell anyone you were here. Not even Sunny and Moony, and especially not The Builder.”
Ox-Head cocked his head to the side. “What about Andromeda? Can I tell her?”
“She already knows about this.” Before he could continue speaking, Horse-Face felt his feet being sniffed. Looking down revealed that it was Sagebear.
“Huh…?” He was then approached by Blaise, who picked Sagebear up into her arms.
With an awkward chuckle, Blaise walked back to where Dennis and Marc were. Marc was intently studying the pictures still, as though he were attempting to absorb the skill that went into them.
“Um, are those two friendly? Or am I going to have to improvise a weapon?” Dennis asked Horse-Face’s companion.
The young man nodded. “You’ll be fine. They don’t harbor any malicious intent towards all of you.”
However, he didn’t seem certain of his own words. For clarification, he looked to The Twin. They nodded without him asking them.
“We have some explaining to do, don’t we?” Horse-Face asked of them. The Twin just patted a spot next to them, silently asking the two assistants to take a seat.