|WARNING: PROFANITY FOLLOWS|
|The following content contains profanity that may not be suitable for readers of all ages. Please proceed with caution.|
|Season 1, Episode 1|
|Air date||March 21, 2014|
Insert Horrible Title Pun Here (Non-Canon)
Welcome to The Void
A Blade is a Blade is the first canon episode of Tech 10: Rebooted.
"Are...we going to die?"
The blue android looked away from his yellow companion as she asked the question, glancing at the energy blades manifesting from his arms. The blades flickered for a moment and then shattered as their power source failed. He opened his mouth to reply, but was unable to think of any subtle way to put it. Their red companion to the left, however, was not quite as concerned with tact.
"Yes and no." The red android replied, futilely attempting to keep his damaged hologram screen projector running. "We're androids, so we can't technically die, per say, but I doubt any of them are going to take the time to repair us after what we just did."
"Oh." The yellow android was silent for a moment, struggling to think of something to say. "Well, it's been fun fighting alongside you two."
"It's been absolutely dreadful on my end." The red android mumbled.
"At least we did what we needed to." The blue android noted, looking down towards the primitive human village near the bottom of the mountain they were currently atop. A few of the villagers seemed to be staring their way with no small amount of confusion at the carnage of metal and advanced electronics surrounding the androids.
"I know we're supposed to protect all life, but do you really think these "Humans" were worth all this?" The red android grumbled.
"I couldn't say one way or the other." The blue android gave a weak grin before collapsing to the ground, his damaged power source all but depleted of what seemed to be its final charge.
"But...I think..." His voice deepened and slurred as he tried to give what he thought might be some encouraging final words. "They'll be something great..."
"Are you retarded?"
A blue and black velociraptor-like alien slammed into a brick wall as he was thrown off-course by a swift punch to the gut from an unknown assailant. A golden blur raced up to the dazed alien and grabbed it by its cone-like helmet, lifting up the alien's head to look them directly in the eyes. The blur stopped moving, revealing it to be a robotic humanoid alien with two teal lightning-like prongs sticking out from the sides of its head. A lime-green hourglass symbol shone from a dial on the robotic figure's chest.
"You just go running through the streets with a bag of guns and don't think anyone is going to say "hey, there's a velociraptor with a bag of guns running through the streets at five hundred miles an hour, that's sort of weird"?!"
"Humans wouldn't be able to see what I was carrying!" The alien protested, trying in vain to remove the robotic figure's death grip on its head. "What the hell is a Galvanic Maintenance Droid doing on Earth trying to catch gun smugglers anyways?!"
"Whatever I damn well please." The maintenance droid punched the alien in the gut again, knocking the wind out of them. "And I'm asking the questions here. Where were you going with these?"
The droid pointed accusingly to a bag of guns lying torn open nearby on the street, noticing a small Russell terrier grab a high-powered hunting rifle in its mouth and take off running towards an animal shelter down the road.
"What in the..." The droid paused for a few moments before shaking his head and turning back to the alien, who was currently trying to catch their breath. "...Whatever, just answer the question."
"I was delivering them to an underground market! What's so wrong with that?!"
"Well, you already admitted you were a gun smuggler, for one."
"Shit!" The alien cursed under their breath. "Look, I'm sure we can work something ou-"
The alien was interrupted by a sudden cacophony of gunshots and barking coming from down the street.
"The hell is that?!"
"Sounds like Mr. Fluffles is staging a jailbreak."
"Shouldn't you go do something about that instead of getting snappy with me?!"
"Yeah, but I don't really care." The droid shrugged as an explosion in the background was shortly followed by the scent of singed fur. "Ain't like I'm a cop. I just like beating up criminals like you. Makes me feel better about myself."
"You have issues."
The droid punched the alien in the face faster than the eye could see, smashing his head backward into the brick wall and knocking him out cold.
"You have a concussion. So there."
The droid stood around for a few moments before suddenly smacking himself across the forehead with a groan.
"Crap, I never got him to spill the beans! Do I just wait around for him to wake up or-"
"Fortunately for your hasty ass, that won't be necessary."
The droid looked down at the symbol on its chest, noticing a black phone symbol that had appeared in the hourglass.
"Oh, hey Aquadilus." The droid replied. "Whaddaya got for me?"
The blue crocodile-like alien on the other end of the line leaned back in his chair and wheeled over to another part of the large wall of computer equipment he was attending to.
"I traced our gun smuggler's route while you were chasing him and cross-referenced it with reported sightings of high-speed alien activity in the valley to put together a comprehensive map of his route. Follow that and it should lead you to either a black market or wherever else he's selling these things."
"Black market, huh? Sounds interesting and possibly lucrative if I play this right."
"So what's your plan?"
"I'm going to go kick ass and take names. Maybe steal some things. Possibly all three at the same time."
"Ah yes, Tech 'Sun Tzu' Logical's classic 'flop around like a fish out of water with a grenade launcher' plan. I'll be on standby for when you need me to bail you out."
"Gee, thanks for the vote of confidence." Tech rolled his eyes.
"You're welcome. Anyways, I'm giving you the coordinates now. Just follow the map."
Tech reached for the dial on his chest, pressing down on the center of it and transforming into a teenage male with brown hair and blue eyes wearing a gray hoodie, dark blue jeans, and black and gray sneakers. A gauntlet-like device with a somewhat rectangular shape sat on his left wrist, with the dial that had been on his chest now resting near the front of the gauntlet.
"Follow the map, huh?" Tech scoffed, pulling up the device and pressing a few elongated buttons stretching down the face of the gauntlet. The black shapes on the dial that created the hourglass symbol retracted as the dial switched to a green map with an arrow point to where he was supposed to go. "What, as opposed to ignoring it and jumping into a lake?"
"Actually, you jumping in a lake doesn't seem like that bad of an idea right now."
"So, I'm standing at a dead end in an alleyway of an alien city sitting underground. Seems about right."
"There has to be something there." Aquadilus spoke over the gauntlet. "This is where the route ends, and Kinecelerans can't phase through walls."
"Well, I'm definitely not seeing anything!" Tech snapped, running his hands along the oddly-colored brick wall he was facing to see if there was anything out of place about it.
"Wow, that's so weird. It's almost like they don't want their illegal base of operations being found by law enforcement or something!"
"Oh, shut up." Tech knocked on the wall a couple times, noting that it felt more like plastic than real brick. "Besides, I'm not law enforcement. I'm just an asshole."
"Sure, but it's still true."
Tech continued knocking on the wall a few more times. As he went in to knock again, the wall shifted to form a large hand that grabbed onto his wrist before he could make contact with the surface. Another part of the wall shifted to create a rectangular head with one hell of an underbite and angry red eyes that stared down at Tech in annoyance.
"What is your deal?" The head asked grumpily. "Most people would just give up by now."
"Most people are smarter than me."
The wall's head stared flatly at Tech.
"I don't know how to respond to that with anything but an agreement."
"See, we're making progress already!" Tech wrenched his arm away from the wall's grip, snapping off a few chunks of brick that fell to the floor with an awkward clutter. "...That was an accident."
"That happens a lot." The wall sighed. "Anyways, if you could just leave, that'd be great."
"Nah. I kinda need to see what's on the other side of you."
"Well, too bad. Keeping random people like you out is my job."
"Yeah, but I don't care though."
Tech pulled up the gauntlet on his left wrist and twisted the dial, prompting it to lift away from the main body of the gauntlet and display a wireframe hologram of a humanoid alien with a jagged outline. He slammed the dial back down, creating a bright green flash that obscured his body from view. The flash cleared to reveal the alien from the hologram, who had a yellow body, a green and black suit covering most of its body, and a single visor-like green eye on his face.
"What the hell?" The head on the wall raised an eyebrow at Tech's sudden transformation.
"This is Electrolite." Tech replied while performing a mock curtsy. "I don't usually use him for stuff like this, but I was too lazy to turn the dial and honestly it just doesn't seem like it matters right now."
"That doesn't help explain what just happened."
"See my previous statement about not caring."
Tech pulled back his right hand, balling it up into a fist and charging it up with crackling yellow electricity. He slammed his fist into the wall, creating a blast of electricity that blew it apart and sent the wall's head flying off a few meters away.
"Anyways, thanks for that extended bit of pointlessness." Tech gave a sarcastic half-wave back at the head as he walked down the stretch of alleyway revealed by the destruction of the wall. "Go make yourself into a nice brothel or something. I might visit sometime."
The wall's head generated a somewhat humanoid, gorilla-shaped body from the back of its neck and turned to stare at Tech with an incredulous expression.
"Who the hell was that guy?"
As Tech continued into the area previously obscured by the living wall alien, he became rather smugly pleased with himself for getting in so easily. So caught up in his completely unwarranted ego was he that he utterly failed to perform a proper perimeter check, and thus did not catch sight of the faintly glowing purple eyes observing him from the shadows.
One would usually not expect a black market to occupy the same position as a regular marketplace, as performing illegal actions in broad daylight is an act reserved almost exclusively for idiots and police officers. Whoever designed the market Tech found himself standing in had obviously heard of this rule, but instead of adhering to it, had gone above and beyond the call of duty to shoot it in the liver and abandon it in the middle of the desert like an irresponsible parent all too fed up with their child's whining about not having eaten for several days.
"Okay, what is all this?" Tech raised an eyebrow as he observed the street in front of him. "I was expecting back alleyways and secret rooms, not a dangerously trigger-happy mall."
"So a regular mall in America?" Aquadilus interjected through the SpecTrix.
"Rude." Tech replied. "But not bad. I'm stealing that."
Tech began walking down the street, passing various shops with the kind of over-the-top weapon-themed names with terrible puns you might expect from the 14-year-old class clown going through their edgy phase. Naturally, Tech found the naming scheme rather relatable in an only semi-ironic manner.
"So, where should I start first?"
"Pretty much anywhere would work." Aquadilus noted. "Just pick a random building and see what they've got."
"Okay then, how about...this one?" Tech pointed to a nearby shop with the text "Swordsman's Black Market Blacksmiths! We crop 'em, you chop 'em!" displayed on the front window in a rather obnoxious font.
"...Tech, I can't see what you're pointing at with this thing." Aquadilus sighed.
"Then how do you know I'm pointing?"
"Because you do this every week, and I'm pretty sure it's intentional."
"It is a mystery."
Tech flung open the door of the sword shop and stepped into the building. The front room was fairly small and empty, with nothing more than a business desk and a door in the back that read 'Employees Only' inside. There was a tall, lanky alien with a rather large metal backpack standing behind the desk, wobbling from side to side like a cruise ship whose largest customer can't on decide which side of the buffet to eat first.
"Oh, a customer! Come in, come in!" The wobbling alien exclaimed in a shrill voice almost as obnoxious as the slogan on the front of his shop.
"I'm already inside the store." Tech pointed out.
"Ah, smart, smart! Of course, you would be, you did choose this shop after all! What can I help you with?"
"You mean other than finding the nearest brick to bash my head in with?"
"Nothing." Tech sighed, scratching the side of his head in annoyance. "Look, it's a sword store, so I think it should be pretty obvious I'm looking for a sword."
"Right you are, of course, of course!"
"Repeat yourself in the same sentence like that again and I swear to god I will buy a gun from one of your competitors and make swiss cheese jealous of how many holes I'm going to put in you."
"...I don't know what swiss cheese is, but message received loud and clear regardless." The clerk awkwardly cleared his throat." At any rate, what type of sword were you thinking of? If you're here, I assume you already know of my...less than legal, shall we say, options."
"Give me something that'll make me a walking war crime and we'll have something interesting going either way."
"I have several blades that fit the bill, assuming you have the money to pay for them."
"Oh, I have all the money I need."
"Well, just wait here then. I'll go to the back and get a few options for you to review."
The clerk went through the door leading to the back room, leaving Tech alone in the front room of the shop.
"Hey genius, you don't have any money on you." Aquadilus piped up. "And the black market isn't known for accepting credit cards."
"No, see, what I said was one of those monkey's paw type deals." Tech explained. "I do have all the money I need, which is no money, because I'm going to extort him."
"And how do you plan on doing that?"
"All I gotta do is flash the SpecTrix at him, tell him I'm a Plumber, and say I won't have this entire operation shut down on the condition that he gives me free stuff."
"You have the SpecTrix symbol on your chest, dumbass, I can almost guarantee he's already seen it." Aquadilus rolled his eyes. "The Plumbers switched from the Intergalactic Peace Symbol to a red circle for their badges like two years ago anyway, so nobody's going to believe you're an active officer. They probably just think you stole an old badge off of someone and wear it around as a trophy."
"So I'm unintentionally hardcore." Tech mused. "Nice."
"You're unintentionally a twit." Aquadilus snapped. "Now go get some actual evidence we can turn in to the real authorities."
"Do I have to?"
"YES! That's the only reason I'm helping you with this!"
"Jeez, you're a buzzkill."
"I'm the only thing keeping you from going full outlaw these days and that honestly worries me."
Tech opened his mouth to reply, but stopped himself upon hearing muffled yelling coming from a back room.
"Hold that thought."
Tech crept up to the door and opened it up a crack, just enough to see what was going on on the other side. At the end of a short hallway was the shop owner, who was standing in the entryway to a room filled with various swords and yelling at someone Tech couldn't see.
"We have a customer in the shop right now!" The owner yelled. "Stop lollygagging and get these blades properly tempered!"
"Look, I can upgrade your machinery, but I can't change the laws of physics to speed up the chemical reactions involved." A somewhat robotic voice replied. "If you invent a better process for this, let me know."
"Don't talk back to me, you liquefied scrap heap! If that customer leaves because you take too long with this, you will have hell to pay! Do you want me to get the cattle prod?!"
The shop owner turned around just in time to receive an electrified fist directly to the face, knocking him out cold. Tech casually nudged his unconscious body out of the way and stepped into the back room to find a flabbergasted black and green alien made of some amorphous material with a circuitry pattern covering his body.
"Tech, two things." Aquadilus sighed. "One: that one-liner was terrible. Two: please tell me you didn't just knock out the shop owner."
"One: Fight me, and Two: Okay, but you usually get mad at me for lying."
"One: No, and Two: WHY DID YOU DO THAT?!"
"Dude was being an ass." Tech shrugged. "Probably. Also I realized that with him unconscious, I can just up and take whatever I want without having to scam him first."
"Dude, I don't know who you are, but thank you!" The alien exclaimed. "That guy's been keeping trapped back here for months to make crap for him!"
"Wow, a black market arms dealer doing something immoral. Who could've seen that one coming?" Tech shrugged sarcastically. "Anyways, you're welcome, I guess, Mr....techno-slime guy."
"The name's Alvono." The alien replied. "I'm a Galvanic Mechamorph."
"Hang on, a Galvanic Mechamorph?" Aqaudilus said. "Can't your species shoot lasers? Why did you put up with the shop owner?"
"He's got like a million guns hidden on his person at a time, the majority of which could probably kill me before I charged up a laser."
"And how did you get in this situation in the first place?"
"Let's just say I gambled away a bit too much money and ended up owing a tad bit too much to the local mob."
"Well, you're free to go now, Alvolvo." Tech said.
"You severely overestimate my ability to give a damn." Tech yawned. "Anyways, before ya split, could you point me to the best sword in here for me to grab?"
"That would probably the Pyronaut Blade over there." Alvono pointed to a scimitar-like sword leaning up against the wall. "At maximum output, it can melt through pretty much anything."
"And what about things that don't melt?"
"Those it just sets on fire."
Tech walked over to the Pyronaut Blade and picked it up, looking it over thoroughly and testing its weight.
"I don't know the first thing about swords, but this baby seems pretty sweet."
"Yeah, it's, uh, pretty great." Alvono tapped his fingers together nervously. "Hey, I hope I'm not overstepping my boundaries here, but do you think I could catch a lift on that thing out of the market area? The shop owner is buddy-buddy with a few of the frequent customers, and if any of them recognized me out and about on my own, they might think something's up."
"Sure, why not?" Tech shrugged. "Kinda curious to see what this thing does if you merge with it."
"Oh man, thank you!" Alvono breathed a sigh of relief. "We should probably get out of here before the owner wakes up."
"Whatever you say, bub." Tech extended the blade of the sword towards Alvono. "Hop on."
Tech walked down the street of the black market with the kind of confident swagger only someone too inexperienced in wielding weaponry to know exactly how unskilled they are in using it could have. This naturally drew a few odd looks, but the majority of people on the street knew better than to mess with the potentially crazy electric alien smugly carrying around a massive broadsword.
I say "the majority" because there was one person on the street who didn't seem particularly concerned with this.
It was the shop owner.
And he was rather cross.
He stomped through the street after Tech, who was completely oblivious to his wrathful stalker, and pulled out several hand cannons, holding them at some very awkward angles in order to point all of them at Tech using a single arm.
"Double-cross me, will you?" The shop owner mumbled angrily under his breath. "Steal my indentured servant, will you?"
The other people walking the street paid no particular mind to the shop owner, having gradually become accustomed to his drunken midnight walks he spent mumbling about how the US government faked the moon landing by filming everything on a set on the moon. As he got closer and closer to Tech, his mumbling became faster and angrier, eventually culminating in a loud, high-pitched screech of unintelligible words about five feet away from his smug target.
"What the hell?" Tech turned around to find the shop owner leveling a plethora of guns directly at his face. "Oh, hi Mark."
"Dammit, we're screwed!" Alvono yelled from the Pyronaut Blade.
"HAND OVER THE SWORD AND THE MECHAMORPH OR YOU DIE RIGHT HERE AND NOW!" The shop owner screamed.
"Yeah, sorry bud, but my manager wants me to bring this in for, like, evidence or whatever, so no can do."
"Just hand us over, dude!" Alvono said nervously. "This isn't worth dying over!"
"Tch, that's cute." Tech scoffed. "You think he's a threat."
"I AM SECONDS AWAY FROM BLOWING OUT YOUR INCREDIBLY SMALL BRAIN!" The shop owner snapped. "HOW DO I NOT COUNT AS A THREAT?!"
"Because you might have a gun...but how fast can you dodge?"
"What does that even-"
Tech backhanded the shop owner with a blow that was quite literally lightning-fast, creating a miniature sonic boom as it landed. The shop owner went flying, hitting the ground about ten meters away, completely unconscious again.
"Man, sucks to be that guy today."
"I...was not expecting that, to be honest." Alvono said, half-stunned.
"Yeah, pretty cool, right?" Tech puffed out his chest. "Something you gotta know here, Alvono: as long as I've got my powers, ain't nobody getting a leg up on m-"
Tech was interrupted by a sudden gunshot from a few buildings down, which was quickly followed up by a large bullet hole appearing in his forehead. His body collapsed onto the ground, allowing the Pyronaut Blade to fall to the ground.
"What the hell?!" Alvono glanced at the shop owner, who was still thoroughly unconscious and ranting about mole people in his sleep. "Wait, if he didn't do it, then who-"
The crowd around Alvono let out a collective surprised gasp, stepping back to create a large empty area.
"Kind of slow reaction time there, don't you..." Alvono stuck his head out of the blade to see what was happening, trailing off as he spotted the source of the gunshot.
A human female around Tech's age walked down the center of the street, reassembling a sniper rifle-like weapon into a small cubic form that she placed into one of the pockets on a belt fit around her torso. She wore a black and purple jumpsuit that covered everything but her head, leaving her purple eyes and brown hair set back in a ponytail easily visible. The people she approached stared at her with confusion initially, but immediately stepped back with the rest of the crowd as soon as they saw the rune-like symbol emblazoned on the front of her belt.
"...You gotta be kidding me." Alvono breathed. "Why is one of them here?"
The girl walked past Alvono, seemingly ignoring him, and leaned down next to Tech's unmoving form. She narrowed her eyes, evidently activating some sort of implant that gave them a faint glow as she observed the body. The crowd watched with bated breath, desperately hoping for her to leave as soon as possible.
A loud beeping suddenly came from the SpecTrix symbol, followed by a bright green flash obscuring Tech's body. The glow faded to reveal Tech back in his human form, who slowly opened his eyes to find the mildly stunned girl leaning over him.
"I'd say this isn't the first time I woke up to an above-average girl next to me, but that would imply I can stand human contact."
"How..." The girl stood up and reached for one of the pockets on her belt. "Your vitals flat-lined. You should be dead."
"And you should be screwing off, but looks like neither of us are getting a happy ending today, huh?" Tech grumbled as the stunned crowd watched him stand up.
"How did you-" The girl cut herself off as she spotted the SpecTrix on Tech's wrist. "An Omnitrix?"
"Yeah, got it at Home Depot." Tech snarked. "Now, can I ask what's going on here, because it really seems like you just tried to kill me."
"Do you really not know what I am?"
"Oh, right, how silly of me!" Tech exclaimed mockingly. "Demi Lovato! Of course! You'll have to excuse my lapse of memory, it's just that I haven't seen you since that last Disney sitcom where-"
"You have no idea."
"Dude, ix-nay on the ark-snay!" Alvono hissed under his breath. "Do you not see the symbol on her belt?!"
"The what on her what?"
Tech glanced down at the girl's belt, staring at the symbol in mock thought.
"...Yeah, no idea what I'm looking at here."
"That's the symbol for the AS guild, you idiot!"
"The what in the what?"
"Someone from AS is there?!" Aquadilus exclaimed from over the SpecTrix. "Tech, you need to get out of there ASAP! Do you know who their target is?!"
"It seems like it's Tech!"
"SHIT! Tech, run!"
"Good grief, what's the big deal?" Tech scoffed. "You're acting like this teenage girl is supposed to be threatening."
"Teenage-you know what, never mind, the important thing here is the AS thing!" Aquadilus snapped. "They're the most feared assassination guild in the galaxy! They have a one hundred percent kill rate!"
"Hmm...yes, I see, I see." Tech replied. "Thing is, if they're so deadly, why have I been alive long enough to have this conversation with y-"
Tech was interrupted by a blade swiping past his head as he narrowly dodged the strike. He turned his attention to his attempted assassin, who was now wielding two crystal-coated longswords.
"Holy shit, where did you pull those from?!" Tech exclaimed. "Are you a wizard?"
"...I don't know what that is."
"You are all of zero fun."
The assassin gave him a flat look that indicated a clear lack of both understanding and caring.
"Anyways, time to do what I do best!" Tech yelled, pulling up the SpecTrix and activating the dial.
He slammed down on the dial, transforming back into the maintenance droid and picking up the Pyronaut Blade. He pointed the blade at the assassin, assuming a mildly imposing posture.
"Alright, prepare yourself for Terminano's ultimate technique!"
The assassin assumed a defensive stance, eyeing Tech carefully. He stepped slowly to the side, as if to start circling her...then abruptly turned and ran off at top speed, creating a sonic boom in his wake.
The assassin stared at the spot where Tech had been in confusion for a moment before sheathing her swords on the sides of her belt. She began walking back down the way she came, followed by the crowd breathing a collective sigh of relief.
"See? One hundred percent kill rate my shiny metal ass." Tech said smugly.
"A lot easier to trash talk now that you're in a different city entirely, huh?" Aquadilus rolled his eyes on the other end of the line. "Look, even if they don't get you on the first attempt, they will get you before their deadline. This is serious."
"Oh, whatever." Tech hit the SpecTrix symbol, transforming back into a human. "But if you're gonna get all paranoid about it, I have an idea. Say, Alvono, how do you feel about a job where you get paid in money instead of avoided beatings?"
"I mean, I'm not entirely opposed to the idea, but-"
"Also you get free lodging."
"Sold." Alvono stuck his head back out of the Pyronaut Blade. "What did I just sign up for?"
"Nothing much." Tech said. "Just sticking around and helping me not die to assassins."
"I mean, I guess I can try." Alvono said. "But you're gonna need to get lucky with this every time they come after you. They only need to get lucky once."
"Trust me, nobody associated with me gets lucky."
"Just do the damn job."
"Okay, okay, sheesh."
Tech sighed and scratched the side of his head in frustration.
"There's something about this I just don't get."
"Which would be...?" Aquadilus prompted.
"What dumb twat put a hit out on me?!"
"Our operative may not have succeeded on this attempt, but I assure you, they will have their target dead by your deadline."
A lithe alien wearing an ornate black uniform lead a faintly glowing white being with a somewhat artificial aura about them down the halls of a dark facility while trying a bit too hard to reassure them about the status of their request.
"Again, there is no particular deadline." The white being stated flatly. "That it happens before the universe is destroyed is enough."
"I...see." The lithe alien replied with a raised eyebrow. "Well, in any case, we still have a reputation to keep, so further failures will be in turn be met with further disciplinary action."
"Far be it from me to suggest how to run your organization, but I'd rather you not damage the operator needed to complete the task I hired you for." The white being grunted with some level of exasperation.
"If they could be damaged in any way that would hold them back that easily, they wouldn't have made it this far." The lithe alien replied. "However, I admit, I am curious as to why you requested our human operator specifically."
"It would take more time to explain than I'm willing to give you."
"Well then, I suppose I won't press you on it." The lithe alien attempted to create a shared chuckle.
The white being's flat glare indicated a clear lack of amusement.
"Um...is there anything else I can do for you today?"
"No." The white being replied, starting to walk away. "To be completely frank, I find you and your organization wholly unpalatable, and I hope we have no need to speak again other than to confirm the transference of funds."
Aquadilus sighed and disconnected his computer's line to the SpecTrix, leaning back in his chair. He sat in silence for a few moments before turning to look at a framed photo sitting on the back of a nearby desk, where it had been lying undisturbed for months. After a bit of silent thought, he got up and walked over to the photo, picking it up and blowing off several layers of dust and cobwebs (as well he could without proper lips, at least).
The picture showed him and a younger, pre-teen Tech sitting together by the river outside the abandoned power plant that would eventually become the shop. His gaze drifted over to Tech's left arm, which notably had no SpecTrix attached. He moved his gaze up a bit to look at Tech's expression, noticing that he had a genuine, non-sarcastic smile. He hadn't seen that in years.
"Yo crocodile tears, what's happenin'?" Tech suddenly burst into the room, casually carrying the Pyronaut Blade behind his head.
"Not much." Aquadilus sighed, putting down the photo. "The store's closed today, so there's not much for me to do."
"Oh yeah, I did want it closed while I was working on this case today." Tech replied. "I totally forgot about that."
"Of course you did."
Tech suddenly took notice of the photo lying on the table next to Aquadilus.
"Speaking of things I forgot about..." He muttered, leaning the Pyronaut Blade up against the wall. "Been ages since I've even thought about this. Damn."
"Yeah, I kind of forgot about it too." Aquadilus said. "It's nice remembering what things used to be like, though."
"Eh, I think I kinda like it better this way." Tech shrugged. "I mean, I may not really have my will to live anymore, but I always have my biting wit and alien watch to make up for it, so it evens out."
Aquadilus gave Tech a questioning look.
"...Okay, look." Tech sighed. "I know how you feel, but I can't make what happened just...not have happened. We have to deal with it."
"No, Tech, we don't." Aquadilus replied wearily. "What happened happened, but the only thing holding us back from moving on is you."
Tech shot Aquadilus a hard glare, then stormed out of the room. After a few moments, Alvono stuck his head out from the Pyronaut Blade.
"So, uh...You gonna tell me what that was all about?"
"It doesn't matter." Aquadilus grumbled. "He's been stuck like this for years."
"Just forget about it." Aquadilus picked up the photo and put it back in the far corner of the desk. "That's what I did."
- Store Owner
- Moranna Ceres (Unnamed)