“Come on now, Ox-Head,” The Builder said while tapping their knife under the corpse’s chin, “No need to look so cross.”
They then proceeded to laugh uproariously at their own terrible pun. They didn’t remember how long Annette had been gone. Time had no place in their domain.
After some more guffawing, The Builder was then blighted from a sharp pang of hurting in their body. Immediately, their hands went to the offending area.
“Ow, fuck! Not again!” The attempts to rub their upper back didn’t seem to do much good. The Builder was reduced to their knees, trying to scoot out of the room that way.
“Ugh. Where’s Horse-Face when you need him?”
Annette was still left speechless at what she was looking at. From the sight of things, The Twin’s bandages hadn’t been changed in quite some time.
“Yeah, I think maybe we should get rid of those-” At this, The Twin batted her hand away, and shook their head no. “What, what is it? Come on, your bandages look like they’re rotting!”
The Twin then fell over backwards, and tried crawling away from her. Everyone else watched as they thrust their hand out, wordlessly attempting to keep Annette away.
“Maybe they’re not letting you check because you’re a pushy bitch,” Sinbad told her as the scene before him unfolded.
To this, Shark scolded him with a hushed but stern, “Sinbad!” But it seemed even he was wondering if The Twin really didn’t want Annette looking.
Upon hearing them, The Twin glanced over at everyone, then back to Annette. They then crawled over to the group, taking hold of Blaise’s shoulder.
“Eh? What, ya want me to do what ya ain’t letting Miss Netty do?” The Twin nodded, shifting their hold to her wrist, and tugging on it.
Dennis was slightly amused, but pleased that his wife might be able to help them. “Best do what they want, dear. They look desperate for some kind of help.”
Getting to their feet, The Twin pulled Blaise into one of the hallways, towards another smaller room.
“That was…weird,” Marc said after a few moments had passed. “Guess whoever they are needed a woman’s opinion.”
“Perhaps, though that doesn’t explain why they didn’t want Miss Annette to check,” Harwood said to clarify the confusing issue.
Horse-Face, his companion, and Sagebear were startled by Blaise getting dragged into the room by The Twin.
“Uh…Hey there,” she said to them. “I’m guessin’ we’re gonna need yer room right now.”
Simply nodding, Horse-Face stood up and pulled his companion up with him. The two males left the room, giving the others privacy.
“Now where are we going?” The young man asked as they went to one of the hidden doors.
Horse-Face just kept quiet, until he opened the door. Leading the companion in, it was shown to be his room.
Once more, to his displeasure, The Mother had ostensibly fallen from her seat. This time, however, it looked as though she’d been crawling toward the bedroom entrance.
“All righty! Let’s see what ya got here…” Blaise sat behind The Twin now, trying not to make any sudden ripping movements.
Sagebear waddled over to take a seat in their lap. In return, The Twin began to pet her, a little smile on their face.
They tried keeping said smile even as they winced in pain. Blaise had gotten their shredded shirt off, leaving them with bandages covering their entire torso.
“Jeez! Looks like ya had a lot of free time on yer hands when ya did this! How many layers did ya manage to put on here?”
Nevertheless, Blaise patiently started to pull off the bandages. Most of them fell apart in tatters, but she continued to remove them.
Once all of them had been pulled off, Blaise was left staring at a thin, pale-skinned back. It bore no marks except for a word carved across their shoulder blades.
“Uh…I dunno what that means…” But Blaise was still going to be surprised. The Twin gently lifted Sagebear off their lap, and turned to face Blaise.
Annette was about to go off in a tirade about what was happening when she was interrupted by screeching outside in the main halls. Then she just sighed.
“I guess I’ll be back…” She then went back out before any of them could say anything to her.
Thankfully, she was able to step out unseen. It actually took up to a full minute before The Builder even appeared.
As soon as they did, they were incensed. Wobbling to stand to their feet, they jabbed their knife towards her.
“Do I gotta put a damn bell on you, like you’re a fucking cat?” Annette tried not to say anything. After hearing what they told her earlier, she didn’t want to give them any more fodder to work with.
A few dragging steps later, and The Builder was finally in front of her. With deep, heaving breaths, they pulled back their knife and slashed her across the face.
From this, Annette fell to the floor, her face already showing signs of leaving yet another scar. In her haze of confusion, she realized that their knife seemed to have somehow slipped out from their grip.
Quickly, she took a hold of it before they could get it again. Annette then took a defensive stance in front of her spouse.
The Builder didn’t seemed intimidated in the least. If anything, they were amused. Apparently, they didn’t think she had the willpower to attack.
She proved them wrong, if in a rather ineffectual manner. Instead of hitting any part of their body, Annette got the blade stuck into a thick layer of bandages.
If nothing else, she could try to humiliate them. In a moment of impulsive thinking, she cut downward, shredding the bandages with surprising ease.
Then, she stepped back, admiring their handiwork. Her growing smirk, however, was halted by what she saw then. Looking downward, The Builder groaned and pinched the bridge of their nose.
“Nice going, honey!” They shouted at her. “You know how long it takes to wrap up a set of triple Ds?!”
Horse-Face’s companion watched as The Mother was put back onto her seat, and left there again. Horse-Face himself grunted in effort, wondering if she had always felt this heavy.
“Can we go back in the passageways now? I hear them shouting.” To this, Horse-Face ushered him back in. Once more, neither of them spoke a word.
Neither of them so much as looked at the others when they got back. The two of them did notice Blaise and the others still in the room.
“Back already, huh?” Something about Blaise’s voice seemed on edge. The Twin just kept the remnants of their shirt over themself as best as they could.
After a few silent acknowledgements, they all turned to go. The young man then turned to Horse-Face, and pointed in the way they’d come.
“You should go, too,” he said. Horse-Face was stunned by this, and tried to convince him otherwise. But the young man persisted.
Knowing he couldn’t reason with him, Horse-Face just dropped his head, and nodded. He then took his place behind Blaise and The Twin.
Sagebear then stopped, and looked back at the companion. She whimpered to him, as if she were worried about his well-being.
Upon hearing these pitiful sounds, The Twin’s head drooped in shame and sadness. They just had a feeling as to what the young man intended to do.
All of them then left him alone in the room, after Sagebear caught up with the humans.