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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sat Nov 27, 2010 5:31 am

Chapter Eleven


Canorith was there moments later doing his best to calm his wife down. Thirteen-thirteen frowned. Hadn’t they wanted more mud? He hadn’t meant to upset her.

“You deal with this!” She demanded at last, her arms waving about in multiple gestures. “This was your idea! Like our house didn’t have enough dirt and problems as it was!”

“I know.”

“Then you bring him.

“I’ll fix it, don’t worry.”

“You better!” She stormed back into their bedroom down the hall and slammed the door.

Canorith turned to Thirteen-thirteen once his wife was gone. His arms were crossed, and his expression was far too serious to be any form of approval. Thirteen-thirteen took a moment to look around…wow. Dirt and water splotched the counter. There were a multitude of footprints surrounding the big spill of previous mud, and from what he could tell, a trail of dirt led from the front door. He hesitantly gazed up at Canorith.

“Get down. Now.”

Thirteen-thirteen did as instructed, splashing into the mess on the floor. Canorith grumbled something inaudible before grasping him by one arm and guiding him outside in a forceful and rushed manner. The man stopped almost instantly, releasing the zetraloid from his grasp and then walking by without a word. He went straight to the lawn and knelt beside it, arm resting on one knee; he reached out with the other and let his hand graze across the area where patches of grass were missing entirely. His gaze traveled to Thirteen-thirteen.

“What did you do?”

Thirteen-thirteen didn’t answer. He had certainly discovered that Canorith did not approve. Maybe making mud was something only he was allowed to do. Thirteen-thirteen wasn’t sure. If that was a rule, why hadn’t he told him so?

The man shook his head and retrieved a long, slender, green, hose and turned the water on. Much to Thirteen-thirteen’s surprise, a cold wave of water crashed down over his head. He yelped in surprise before trying to retreat. The hose had longer range than he had expected though, and in his panic, he didn’t realize he was running in circles.

After a while longer, Canorith shut it off without a word and began rolling it into a neat pile. Thirteen-thirteen frowned and shook his head and then each foot in turn. That hadn’t been very kind of him.

“No more playing in the dirt.”

Maybe that had been the human’s goal—to get the dirt off of him. Well it certainly hadn’t been very nice method, Thirteen-thirteen decided.

“Now for the house.”

He waited outside as Canorith disappeared into the house. Well, so much for being helpful. Could he have ruined it anymore? He began to idly kick a small rock along the sidewalk, gasping when a large shadow blocked out the light all together. He slowly lifted his head to meet the threat looming overhead.

A tall zetraloid was staring down at him. He had two, small, yellow fins that jutted out of the top portion of his otherwise black and white helmet like horns. He had a black chest plate lined by a yellow trim with several jagged shoulder guards extending far over his gray arms. Patches of similar gray armor covered his legs with jet black armor finishing off the lower section. Thirteen-thirteen’s eyes went wide as he retreated several steps.

The massive zetraloid stepped forward. Thirteen-thirteen grabbed the small rock he had been kicking, clutching it fiercely as he felt his back bump against the closed door.

“Hi! You must be the n—ow.” The rock bounced off the larger zetraloid’s forehead, “…new guy.” He rubbed where the rock had hit and smiled, “Gee, you sure are edgy.”

Why did everyone insist upon telling him that? Maybe if they quit sneaking up on him he’d be friendlier.

“Name’s Vorth, you got a name?”

Thirteen-thirteen stood resolute and watched the monstrous zetraloid’s every move until he heard the door click open. That was his chance to run! He took it, dashing inside and evading Canorith who tried preventing it. Now he was chasing too! What had he done? He needed to hide! He rushed to Canorith’s office and scrambled over a mound of blueprints and flung droplets of water in the process. His head swung back and forth. Where could he hide?

No time. Before he could make another move, something had pulled him off his feet entirely.

“Help! Help!!”

He scrambled frantically, kicking at whatever had grabbed him.

“Kid….kid!”

Thirteen-thirteen stopped mid wail of his most recent cry for help and saw Canorith a few feet away. His gaze traveled to what was holding—it was the guy from outside, Vorth.

“Ahh!! Heeellllp!”

He finally squirmed free and darted back outside, charging down the street. He had to get away! He had to find his family! He stopped and frowned. Wait, they were gone! What would he do? Where would he go? He heard voices from behind. They were chasing him! He started running again.

At least he was fast. Thirteen-thirteen could hear the other’s pounding footsteps and shifting armor above his own heavy breathing—Vorth was much slower than he was. He swerved to avoid a crowd of humans. They squealed anyway.

He wasn’t sure if Vorth and Canorith were still following or not now. Too much noise was radiating from every direction. He slid to a stop to avoid rolling into the middle of a street and quickly turned right. Buildings, humans, and trees were all going by in a blur.

He dared to stop when he reached a large mall parking lot. Where was he now? A car was headed his way. It honked, narrowly avoiding him. He retreated to the sidewalk. Here, several businesses lined the way. Numerous chairs and small, black tables were outside, and from one place he smelled a scent similar to that of Canorith’s mud. Maybe if he brought home some new mud he’d be forgiven. He cautiously approached the building and sniffed again. Mud back home hadn’t smelled like this. Just as he had neared the door, someone stepped through it.

Thirteen-thirteen stumbled back and then looked at the human who had stopped to stare at him. He looked vaguely familiar. At least the face. The rest…not so much. He was holding a small foam cup of a steaming substance. He adjusted his glasses and raised one eyebrow.

“You sure give Canorith the run around, don’t you?”

Thirteen-thirteen’s helmet fins perked up then promptly lowered again.

“Still upset with me?” The man took another sip, “Would you prefer being lied to?”

Thirteen-thirteen gave the man a rather angry scowl and turned away; bumping into a human and causing the contents of his cup to spill. Boiling brown liquid splashed onto his armor. He cried out and retreated beneath a table, rubbing his tender arm. It had been hot just like that thing at the Federation! Why had the human done that? Mud must be a very serious matter for humankind.

He almost jumped when one of the chairs moved. Terrik. That was the other human’s name. He had moved it aside and was offering out his hand. Thirteen-thirteen blinked and gazed at him with crimson eyes.

“Come on.” He encouraged, “You can come with me.”

Thirteen-thirteen shook his head. The human would only bring him back to that big zetraloid and Canorith who hated him now.

“No? Okay then.” Terrik sat down on the chair and sighed, “I told him this was going to be trouble. Does he even know you’re gone?”

Thirteen-thirteen nodded his head and began to draw patterns in the dust with his finger. Maybe he could live under here instead. Then no one would bother him.

Terrik looked at his watch then back to Thirteen-thirteen. He stood up, brushed himself off and went into a different building. A small girl and boy rushed out, laughing with their parents following just behind. They each carried something that they were licking at.

Thirteen-thirteen watched until they had disappeared around the corner. Why couldn’t he have that? Even if it was just some of his family! He’d have given anything to be back with them in their house or to go get that stuff the humans had with his brothers.

“Ice cream?”

He jumped up and hit his head on the table.

“Ouch!” Covering and rubbing his head, he sat back down. Mean table. Did it hate him too? He glanced out to locate the owner of the voice which had startled him. Terrik had returned, holding one of those things the human children had been holding. Its vibrant colors of pink, orange and green were rather appealing.

Thirteen-thirteen eventually crawled out and reached for it. Terrik handed him it without question. He promptly stuck his finger in it. How cold! And squishy! After doing so a few more times, he tried licking it as he had seen the human children do. That was good! He began licking at it more, content with his treat, as he sat on the ground.

He had eaten nearly half of it before noticing Terrik was still there. Was he his new family? Like the people who had walked by? He didn’t seem to be paying much attention to anything other than that foam cup. Oh, and the small bird that had just flown by. Thirteen-thirteen stood up and licked the ice cream again, watching as Terrik rose from his chair and checked his watch again.

“Still don’t want to come?”

Thirteen-thirteen lowered his gaze to the ice cream. He didn’t reply, but started following Terrik. It was better than wandering by himself, and maybe the human even liked him! They stopped at a store on the way. It had hard brown carpet and smelled like cardboard. A lot of packages and envelopes were spread around the room.

Thirteen-thirteen poked at one while Terrik spoke to the person at the counter. From somewhere above, a song began to play. Thirteen-thirteen listened for a bit before beginning to sway in time with the beat as he licked at the ice cream. This was a peaceful place.

“He’s adorable. Is he yours?”

“Thankfully, no.” Terrik answered with a subtle laugh.

Thirteen-thirteen stopped and frowned. Why didn’t he want to be around him? Did humans simply only like their own kind? After awhile Terrik was ready to leave. Thirteen-thirteen followed close behind yet again.

“I don’t suppose you’re ready to go home yet, are you?”

Thirteen-thirteen shrugged. It wasn’t like Terrik wanted him around either, so what did it matter? He remained silent as the man led him back to the very place he had fled from.

“Lose something?” Terrik asked when he saw Canorith outside.

“You found him!” Canorith tossed aside a small tool as he came to meet them.

“He found me, really.”

Thirteen-thirteen reluctantly stepped out into the open. Canorith still didn’t look very happy, although by far less furious than earlier. He pointed to the house. Thirteen-thirteen sighed and slowly made his way there, past the giant zetraloid, Vorth, who was standing near the door.

“Don’t worry. He can’t stay mad forever.” He offered.

Thirteen-thirteen paused to look at him. Maybe he wasn’t so bad. His thoughts were cut short when Canorith entered the house, instantaneously glaring. A frown tugged at Thirteen-thirteen’s face as he scurried into the office and watched silently as Canorith slammed the door shut.

He waited for a few minutes before going over to a corner not buried in papers and sitting down. Was this how it would always be? He began watching the clock. Wouldn’t Canorith come back for him? The hours kept stretching on. Light from the window had turned to moonlight. Had they forgotten about him? He couldn’t hear anyone, nor see light from the other room. He kicked at a crumpled piece of paper for awhile then went over to the window, looking for the stars; all he could see was a gray haze with faint light though.
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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Nov 28, 2010 6:05 am

Alrighty. Very Happy Time for some more Faint Inception. =D What was that other word you used the other night? I found it hilarious but forgot. =( And it wasn't Faint Reception was it?

Poor lil Edgy. =. If only he had more experience under his belt. D= Then he could look fat and have a belt. =) Dirt and problems? =. Come on Canorith's wife that isn't a huge deal okay? Calm down a little. =. It's just dirt and I'm sure your husband can afford a vacuum. =U Maybe even an expensive brand like.....Wal-Mart Plus. =)

"Then you bring HIM." =. Hey at least she said him, and not 'IT' or 'THAT THING'. =) See Edge she likes you. xD Poor Edge. =U He can tell what he did wrong, he just doesn't know why it be wrong. Uh oh. ._. Boy, even though I understand why Canorith is mad perfectly, I still can also perfectly understand Edge and his actions and stuff and it all comes together perfectly and leaves me feeling like I don't know who is right. =O Does Canorith have the right to be angry? Well yes, he does. However, he shouldn't. Edge had good intentions didn't he? Amazing writing skill, no other literature has challenged my mind as such.

AH WATER CANORITH STOP DON'T MAKE HIM FEAR WATER oh it's a bath. =) Silly me. =D And you Edge, YOU MADE ME THINK IT. *passes blame to Edge* =) Now for the house. =. Canorith gathered up the hose and began to bring it inside. =D

Kick the rock and wonder about what you did wrong. =U Kids are so unwise. xD Poor Edge. =P Oh no a threat. 0.0 Could it be...is it...Hornet? =O ROCK ON THE FACE OHHHH BURNED. I mean smacked. Edgy Edge. xD

Why did I say Hornet you told me who it was last night. o.0 The heck....WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME?! Oh gosh Edge, not inside while you're wet. D= Blueprints?! EDGE STOP LOOKIG AROUND AND STUFF. Gosh. Vorth. =. Is he the babysitter? =) xD At least he seems nice. Then again I've never met a table with a grudge.

Run there Mr. Fast. >=. Vorth is nice and Canorith is only annoying and weird and stuff and you have no where to go so keep running. =U Real smart...NICE PLANNING. Gosh, stupid humans need to get out of the way or stop acting like he is a murdering machine. =U Wait ten years THEN squeal everyone gosh. Running and running and running. =.

See even in his panic he thinks about helping Canny. =U He does care Canorith, you and your wife need to give him a better chance. TERRIK or Tekik or whatever your name is, stop being so easy to hate and understand at the same time. I DEMAND THIS. =I Gosh poor Edge. D= Hot coffee onto his armor. He does not get along well with this substance.

Well TEKIK ( =) ) I hope you are happy, Edge has you figured out. Terrik is a pretty interesting character, and I like his style of actions and things. =. But dang it why is he so easy to dislike? Live under a table Edge. xD How well thought out.

A small girl and boy rushed out, laughing with their parents following just behind. They each carried something that they were licking at. Thirteen-thirteen watched until they had disappeared around the corner. Why couldn’t he have that? <----- I immediately assumed he wanted some of the ice cream or suckers or whatever they were licking at. xDD Not a family. =( Poor Edge. xD

Okay so it was ice cream. =. Terrik does care. Very Happy Giving Edge some ice cream. xD Good for him he is not disliked by Brad at this second anymore. =) Hard brown carpet. =. So wood, Edge? =) Is he at the Post Office? =. Thankfully no. HA HA HA HA.....HA.... =| Nice Terrik nice.

Okay I admit Canorith kinda cares too he seemed worried. =. Giant zetra. xD Can't stay mad forever? I beg to differ...

Wrath: If he fails I can show you how it's done....too bad you won't live forever to see me be correct.

Poor Edge. =( All alone and left to be rotting away like Corruption for a while. D= I like how you ended it, I really did. xD It wasn't really suspense but it makes it seem like Edge really is waiting...because I must wait. =. So nice job. Very Happy You also once again did a superb job making everything come together into a very enjoyable reading experience. =. Thank you for posting and stuff. Very Happy
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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Nov 28, 2010 4:50 pm

*told you in IM C: *

Holy massive reply =D XD I likey.
Walmart @_@ XDD She wants more than walmart plus she wants walmart delux

I have skill to challenge your mind I guess =U .......cool XD
Lololol horrifying water FTW =U and yes bringing hoses into the house is an epic idea sure to please the wife =) XD


Edge still doesn't seem to get the concept that water inside house= bad, you know what I always say, faint perception c: XD
And no Vorth was just visiting and happened to be there XD

XDDD You are insulting the Edge's method of thinking aren't you you cruel person you;.

Yes overreactive humans >_>


XDD well he wants ice cream too if it makes you feel any better =) XD
and despite the fact Terrik doesn't seem all that friendly, because he's not >_> , he likes Edge just fine XD He just doesn't approve of Canorith keeping him, nor Canorith's skill in watching him.

Terrik is surprisngly fun to right abou 0_o oddly enough.

Oh and yes living under a table is a really well thought out plan.

Edge: I was YOUNGER.

Mmhmm >_> Still wanna live under a table bud?

Edge: No....I can't fit....very well.

0.o I see.

Moving on.

XDD Yes hard brown carpet =) I bet DOMINO would've known what it was.
yeeeees a post office type place =)
like a UPS place really


Yes waiting Edge is waiting indeed. XP Glad you liked the ending. I wasn't so sure myself.

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Tue Dec 21, 2010 3:11 am

Chapter twelve


The following days whisked by with little excitement, although that was fine by Thirteen-thirteen. Anger in the household had died down leaving everything fairly peaceful. Canorith hadn’t been happy with the new mud supply in the holder—mentioning something about it being for coffee, not mud—but there had been no further argument on the matter.

Now Thirteen-thirteen waited by the T.V., flipping through channels. Light from the flat screened device reflected off his black armor as he changed the channel yet again. Another cartoon flashed across the screen. No one else was going to be home later today, leaving Canorith to take him to some meeting that he and Terrik had arranged. Why so early, he hadn’t a clue, surely there were more convenient times than this. It almost reminded him of the early mornings his own father used to disappear at. He wished it were his father instead. He’d far more have preferred to go to work with him than to a meeting with a near stranger. After all, he still hadn’t the slightest clue as to why he was here.

Thirteen-thirteen sighed as he gazed out the window. He could only make out a few stars in the dark sky. The street lamps were on though so he could see a misty haze beneath them. It was nearly four a.m. and everyone else was asleep. He assumed Canorith would get up soon—he always seemed to be up first after all, although he had thus far heard nothing.

Discontent with his current choice of pointless cartoons, he tossed the remote on the couch beside him and began to pick at the black, fingerless gloves he wore, pulling one far out before letting its thick and elastic material snap back into place. It was to keep the center glow from his hands from showing since he hadn’t figured out how to completely stop that on his own. It made sense from what Canorith had said about Shapeshifters being a bad thing now that they would want to hide it.

Once again, he looked to the window. It was so quiet and lonely. He flopped back on the couch, grabbing the scarf in the process. He wished his family were there, silently, and then rubbed his face against it. How was one supposed to ‘move on’ without their family? The world seemed so big now and there was so much he didn’t know…Things his family should’ve been there to teach him about still. Shapeshifters weren’t bad; they were zetraloids, just like everyone else…weren’t they?

The quiet beep of an alarm clock distracted him. He heard a yawn, creak of a bed and then footsteps. Canorith must have been getting up finally. Sure enough, the man appeared in the doorway, hair poking out every direction. He stumbled in the dark until he found the switch on a small lamp and clicked it on. A look of surprise sluggishly appeared on his weary face.

“What are you doing up?”

Thirteen-thirteen didn’t answer, rather hugging the scarf.

Canorith said no more as he trudged on to the kitchen and set about making more coffee. Soon He held the mug in both hands, expression still groggy. Thirteen-thirteen slid off the couch and headed over to him, dragging the scarf along behind him. The coffee smell was heavy in the air, tainting it with the warm, bitter scent that humans apparently craved. He sat on the cold floor once he had reached the kitchen and watched.

Canorith barely gave him a glance before he hurried away to find a hairbrush and more business friendly clothing. Humans were fickle that way, he had learned, always wanting to change the thin flaky skins they called ‘clothes.’ He could hear the water from the bathroom sink now. Thirteen-thirteen sighed, the man wouldn’t reappear for some time he presumed, leaving him to watch T.V. or think. A knock on the door saved him from doing such though.

Hesitantly he stood, setting his feet down carefully in long strides to make himself near silent as he approached the dark, rectangular shape he knew to be the door. Another knock. He tilted his head to one side. Was he supposed to open it? Canorith always did. He jumped back as someone knocked three more times and held his stance, ready to flee if needed. No further noise beat against the door. He shrugged and walked back to it, sliding one lock to the side and twisting the other so that the door would open.

A man with glasses and pin straight, dark brown hair stood there—Terrik. Someone else was with him this time. A zetraloid. Its helmet covered most of its face in black, streaked with white patterns. What seemed to be his transmitters met at the tips with his helmet fins, creating a sort of triangular illusion on either side of his head. The top curve of his head was adorned in thin, golden metal, almost having the appearance of a saw blade imbedded in his head. He wore a long tailed bandanna of midnight blue color and had black and gray armor with occasional blue accents. It seemed almost overlapping, although thin, perhaps to allow him to move in an agile manner while retaining proper protection. His eyes, visible from rectangular breaks in his armored face, were an icy blue.

“Does Canorith know you’re opening doors?” Terrik asked as he stepped in.

“No…not really.”

The zetraloid followed Terrik and gave Thirteen-thirteen a glare of contemptuous disgust.

“I do not believe he’ll appreciate that.” Terrik handed a folder to the zetraloid beside him, “I do though. It’s bitter cold out, one would think it’s winter.” The human rubbed his hands together and bundled his thick, brown coat tighter around himself before nodding towards the zetraloid that had come with him, “Oh, this is Shadow.”

The zetraloid, Shadow, continued with his shattering glare.

Despite feeling as though the zetraloid wanted nothing more than to break him apart with a mere gaze, Edge smiled. “H-hi.” He could be a friend. Friends were good things, right? People and other zetraloids tried to get friends—they made them happy. At least that’s what he thought he’d heard that one show say.

Shadow didn’t make the slightest effort of returning the greeting, rather turning his head away in one swift jerk.

Terrik watched the two for awhile before deciding it best to intervene. “So, do you have a name yet?”

Thirteen-thirteen found that to be an odd question considering how little the man seemed to care in general, but that was easy enough to forgive. He shook his head before smiling, “Are you gonna give me one??”

Terrik sighed as he reorganized another folder of papers he had been holding and passed them to Shadow as he set about thumbing through a new set, “No…no, I’ll leave that to Canorith.”

“Wanna watch TV with me?” Thirteen-thirteen waved the remote at Terrik.

“That’s quite alright. I’ll just stand h—”

“What are you doing in my house?” Canorith had appeared from another room, buttoning up his black jacket.

“Good morning.” Terrik merely gestured to Thirteen-thirteen with a wave of his hand, not pausing to look up as he searched through the files. “I thought you might not approve.”

Canorith’s gaze drifted to Thirteen-thirteen, eyebrows raised in question. “Why’d you open the door?”

“Because he knocked.” Thirteen-thirteen had scampered back to the TV and was flipping through channels mindlessly.

“That doesn’t mean you just let him in.”

Thirteen-thirteen glanced over his shoulder at the human, confusion evident in his expression. “Why not? He’s your friend.”

“Employee.” Canorith corrected as he rushed to the kitchen to grab his coffee travel mug, “There’s a difference.”


“What’s the difference?”

Canorith set the mug down with enough force to make Thirteen-thirteen flinch. That single noise seemed to travel in a resounding manner, in otherwise absolute silence until Canorith had lifted the coffee pot to fill the mug. Everyone was watching him. Whether for the same reason as himself, or not, Thirteen-thirteen wasn’t sure.

At last the man twisted the top to his travel mug on, “It’s not important right now, we need to leave before we end up late.”

Terrik’s normal frown twisted up to the slightest of smiles for a fraction of a second before dropping once more as he gathered up his files. He welcomed himself to the door, pushing it open against the strong wind outside. He and Shadow walked through first, followed next by Thirteen-thirteen and lastly Canorith who was locking up the house again.

Thirteen-thirteen pulled the scarf he had wrapped around his neck tighter. It dragged the ground, but he didn’t mind.

“It’s like Christmas out here!” he could hardly see but a few feet in front of himself through the thick fog. The cold dangled low like some kind of freezing swamp draft draped over one’s shoulders and every breath felt like swallowing water filled with splintered ice, “Is the sky frozen??”

“Nearly.” Terrik muttered as he rubbed his thick jacket arms to stay warm. “Why do I even live here? I hate this weather.”

“But the coast has such a nice view.” Canorith joked as he took a slurping gulp from the mug, “Besides, that’s why they invented coffee.”

Thirteen-thirteen watched them curiously as they walked along. Humans seemed odder and odder with every passing statement. Next thing he knew, he’d probably be finding out that they scheduled meetings this early for fun. Pushing that amusing thought aside, he glanced over to Shadow, but was disappointed to find him just as closed off and antisocial as before. He simply walked beside Terrik, odd odd helmet fins nearly poking forward in his alert gaze.

They were heading down a way Thirteen-thirteen had never gone before so he tried making note of where they had come from incase they got lost; after all, these humans hadn’t shown a lot about their navigational skill.

The ground beneath their feet was made of an unevenly set thin brick, some of which were split in half and worn by age. Regardless, all were in shades of copper and steel grays. Off-white buildings rose up on either side of their path, splotched with dirt collecting in the transparent spider webs around their bases. Their walls had chunks of missing paint and chipped brick along the outlines of their porous surfaces. The roads here were much more narrowed than the ones near Canorith’s house. Thirteen-thirteen didn’t suspect that a human car would be able to fit in such a space. Overall, it seemed a bit more run down than he had expected.

“So.” Terrik tapped on his files, “Any plans for naming your newest addition?”

Canorith looked to Thirteen-thirteen before slapping his forehead with the palm of his hand, “I completely forgot!”

Terrik continued on in a clearly unfazed manner that Thirteen-thirteen was beginning to believe was due to him having expected such an answer. “Best make it fast. Wouldn’t want Mr. Vogon to get suspicious.”

Canorith nodded as he looked off distantly. Terrik didn’t give him long to debate, “You haven’t given it any thought?”

“I did.” Canorith answered quickly, “I just…”

“Call him Edge.”

What?

“Edge.” Terrik repeated, “It fits. No one can doubt that he’s a bit on edge, plus it’s part of the company name—he’s a new mascot, hardly a reason to be suspicious.”

Canorith’s expression lightened with Terrik’s idea. Thirteen-thirteen tilted his head. He hadn’t a clue what that meant, but it sounded like a good thing. Both of the humans were looking at him, and even the other zetraloid seemed to be half paying attention.

“Edge.” Canorith repeated, “I like it.”

Thirteen-thirteen smiled at the others.

“Kid, your name is Edge now, got it?”

Edge nodded his head enthusiastically. He had a name now! Every zetra wanted a more individual name when they were only a model number. Edge, yes Edge sounded like a good name to him—whatever it meant, he didn’t care.

Soon enough they arrived outside a small restaurant. It was nestled into the back of a beige building that had several colorful and large writings on the block work outside of it, perhaps sprayed by paint; they looked interesting, although Edge couldn’t make out what they actually stated. The window was almost entirely covered by signs announcing all the specials of the day. The only thing that softened the appearance was a large bed of bright red flowers near the garbage can just outside the entrance.

“Listen Edge—Hey Edge.”

Edge was preoccupied poking at a sign on the big window unsuccessfully—it must have been trapped on the inside, he decided with a sigh. A glowing red and blue sign was lit up just above announcing the establishment was open.

“Edge!”

Edge jumped and twisted around before he had landed and looked to the human who so persistently wanted his attention.

“As I was saying,” Canorith needlessly adjusted his tie, “I want you to be quiet and stay close, understand?”

Edge nodded his head. Why would he be inclined to wander off anyway? He didn’t know this place at all. And it wasn’t like he could get so lost in such a small restaurant anyway.

“Shadow, keep an eye on him.”

The zetraloid’s stiff stance faltered for a moment, “But sir…”

He got no further before the other they had been waiting for arrived. He looked like an average man to Edge, although he had bleached blond hair that was oddly unfitting to his appearance. It was slicked back in an orderly fashion. Edge stepped aside as five other zetraloids appeared beside the man and spread out. Friends! Then he remembered Canorith had told him to be quiet. He frowned, visibly displeased by this fact.

The humans exchanged a formal greeting before the man kneeled in front of him. Edge took a step back. The man had deep blue eyes and a rather boxy face—not fat, just very defined and almost bony with a very straight cut chin. A long scar trailed all of the visible hand he had extended.

“You’re a new face.”

Edge snapped a quick glance at Canorith and Terrik then back to the man. Canorith and Terrik alike had looked fairly unsettled. He didn’t blame them. Despite the man’s clear smile, something didn’t feel right. He took another few steps back, eyes never leaving the man. After a moment, the man shrugged and stood.

“Not the most friendly, is he?”

“No. He’s a bit weird.” Canorith held open the door as they began filing in, “Named him Edge.”

“Fitting.”

Edge didn’t hear the rest of what they had said; he was busy watching the other zetraloids walk by. They were odd looking creatures. Half of their body was one color and the other half another and their helmet fins had near glowing trim.

Once they had all filed in, he trailed along at a slower pace with Shadow bringing up the back. Inside was dim with only one lit light. It was giving everything else an orangish tinge. There were only a few tables inside—one near a window and then two against a wall. The humans welcomed themselves to the largest of the tables while the five zetraloids with the man stood behind him.

Terrik placed his folders and various files down as he pulled his chair closer. A third human appeared from behind a swinging door, holding coffee. He offered it to everyone around the table, Edge included. Figuring Canorith liked it he took a cup, and no later had Shadow already taken it back from him with a roll of his eyes.

Edge shrugged as he looked to the older zetraloid. He guessed that he wasn’t allowed to have it for some reason or another and decided to listen to the conversation instead.

“How’s the family, Canorith?” The man, Darryl Vogon, asked, “How about you, Terrik? Still no woman in your life?”

Much laughter followed. What they humans found amusing about that statement intrigued Edge, but he didn’t waste much time debating it.

Darryl clasped his hands together, “So what prospective idea do you have for me today?”

The meeting was soon underway, or so Edge assumed by the quieter voices and exchange of paperwork. They were modifying some specs on a design of some sort. If he was hearing them correctly, developing a more money friendly build equivalent to the current one. Although he wasn’t sure exactly what that meant, the humans definitely seemed interested in such a subject. He guessed it made sense; Canorith had mentioned something about his business doing things like that.

Edge began to push a plastic salt shaker back and forth absent mindedly. Were meeting always this boring? Shadow was watching the five other zetraloids who were by Darryl Vogon, so he decided to follow that example. Such weird looking zetraloids. He could hardly suppress a laugh at their appearance and certainly the smirk tugging at one side of his face was a dead giveaway of some sort.

The others exchanged a glance amongst themselves. After a small discussion, one of them stepped forward, placing his hands flat on the table and leaning down into it and thus bringing himself closer to Edge on the other side. Edge didn’t budge.

“What’re you doing?” The voice had come not from the zetraloid, but from someone just a bit further away.

The zetraloid instantly stood up in proper attention upon hearing the question, “Nothing, sir.”

So that was who had spoken. That Darryl guy. The man gave his zetraloid a long look, one that Edge couldn’t understand by a surface glance. It spoke of a deeper meaning only they must have known. To anyone else, it would just have seemed as though he didn’t know how to respond as he mulled over the answer.

“Stop bothering the new kid.”

“Yes sir. My apologies.” With a quick glare at the black armored zetraloid, he retreated behind the man again to keep watch.

Although unapparent to the man he answered to, the group was plainly still discussing something, Edge decided. He assumed such by their crossed arms and downward pointed heads with the occasional, subtlest of nods or glance at one another—probably a silent transmitter conversation.

He briefly glanced up to Shadow. Maybe they could have a super secret transmitter conversation too. To his disappointment though, the zetraloid showed no indication of wanting anything to do with him. Was it because he was a Shapeshifter? Had Terrik told him that? Glumly he rested his chin on his black armored arms he had crossed on the table.

Two hours later, the humans were finally wrapping up their long meeting. They all seemed to be in good spirits in their own ways. Canorith’s was most evident, with his big smile and green eyes having a glow of anticipation; Terrik looked more relieved than anything and then there was the other…Darryl, his happiness was something different. Something reserved and yet rather unnerving.

Edge shook his head as a shiver trickled down his spine.

“What’s your problem?”

He glanced up to see it was Shadow who had asked him. His light blue eyes not at all friendly—it was more like he was accusing him of having done something. Edge didn’t answer; he had a feeling it would only make Shadow dislike him even more if he tried to explain it.

After they had paid, everyone exited the building. Darryl and his zetraloids were first to depart after a firm handshake from each with Canorith, Terrik and Shadow. No one shook Edge’s hand, much to his disappointment. Why didn’t he count for anything? He watched after the six as they walked about at a decent, unhurried pace until they had vanished around a corner.

After this, Terrik and Canorith shook hands as well, sharing some sort of human joy that visibly intrigued Edge. Even Shadow seemed to have understood it better than him. He looked to him for clarification, but the zetraloid ignored any such attempt. Edge’s helmet fins twitched irritably. All this lack of explanation was beginning to get on his nerves. How was he supposed to learn to be like them if they never even told him anything?



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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:48 am

Anger died down in the household. =. Good, little Edgy doesn't need all that stuff. Anger and stress like things I mean. Ugh...TV. Edge is turning into a slave of modern day entertainment. D= Yeah Terrik, what's with the early morning scheduling? I hate those, OBVIOUSLY there are more convenient times. Nice 4AM city outdoors description. xD Edge you can beat Canorith awake (Almost said up. Wink) GOGOGO. =.

WOW nice touch with the gloves and Edge's thoughts. Very Happy It really adds to the depth of the entire shapeshifter situation. Also with the no family situation. =. Edge is all wondery and stuff. Just like everyone else, weren't they? Canorith finally. Mr. Bedhead. It would be amusing to wake up and find Edge I think. xD Especially as a little kid just kinda...being there.

Well Edge, welcome to morning life. It is indeed very boring and monotonous and stuff. xD Door open suspense. Yes yes, I know it's like that in real life and stuff...especially for a lil Edgy. >_> Opening that door can be scary and it could be a Shield...I mean a killer. =)

Nice Terrik zetra description. Very Happy He has style...and personality....well the zetra has style and Terrik has personality. =U TERRIK STOP BEING LIKEABLE. Telling Edge you appreciate it while getting him in trouble at the same time sorta even though it isn't your fault. SHADOW. >=. Your name was almost changed so you better make yourself worthy of it this time. Edge is not intimidated....much....by this glare. Friends are good says TV. xD

Edge wants a name. =D I see Shadow is mean and Canorith is slow with naming zetras. Aww....leave it to Canorith? xD He'll probably name him something dumb, like Challenger. =U (I kid I kid just wanted to poke fun at Mr. Humor.) Edge wants to watch TV. =. xDD And he is being unintentionally annoying I see. Although his logic makes sense. Coldness. =. Going to a meeeeeeting. Oh yeah, oh yeah.

*gasp* Terrik said HATE. 0.0 That is the word equivalent of murder. =U Early meetings for fun. xDD That's a good one Edge. *Edge and Brad find out this is true*

Can\\'t Believe it

Map Edge. =) Or GPS Edge. CANORITH FORGOT. Really now? I couldn't tell. Hey, on the bright side...he ADMITTED IT. >=D HAW. Terrik named him. =. Edge. Wow the way you built up his name makes it a lot cooler, seriously. xD Not sure why, but it does. Edge liked Edge. =) Can Edge even pronounce Edge? I bet he'd go EHG. >_>

xDD I can picture the mind of one of those zetras. As Edge's face lights up with excitement, before going to a frown without him saying anything. It would make me wonder what he did that for I know. xD

Terrik and Canorith: *epic nervous that MAN will find out Edge is shapeyshifter. =)* Terrik: Yo, MAN, that's my dog Edge, but not in like a dog dog, but a dog like...a pal. 100% official legalnessity. You know boy...?

Canorith: HE'S A SHAPESHIFTER.

MAN: OMG I JUST WANTED TO TELL THE LITTLE FREAK HI!! D=

Humans? You get buig luxury table. Zetras? There is a Fisher Price table over there but only two plastic chairs, please substitute phone books and bean bag balls as sitting equipment.

Humans: =( We want fun chairs.

A wild Darryl has appeared. =O It's okay Darryl, Terrik knows poking fun at someone breaks the ice almost everywhere and helps smooth things along, so he will not mind your immense lack of care for your employee. NO COFFEE FOR EDGE. Ha ha he finds the other zetras funny looking. xDD What is this? Darryl is fooling the readers into thinking he is nice? =. Defending Edge. xD Business meeting went well. I can't believe Edge made it through the whole meeting without causing some sort of trouble. Edge wanted to shake hands. xD That is both somehow amusing and depressing you know? =. Poor confused little Edgey. =.

Thank you for posting this nice long chapter. Very Happy Even without a lot of action, you made it seem really interesting due to your skill of giving everyone such authentic thoughts and actions and things. They make me feel like I am right there watching and it really sucks me in. xD I love reading these. =. Thank you very much, you did an amazing job once again. =)

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Wed Dec 22, 2010 4:31 am

OH MY GOSH BRADXDDD excessive laughing you made me have XDDD

With your statement of what went on while they were being nervous and stuff XDDD

Thanks about outside description and the yes, modern Edge D: Er ya know TV watcher. Who said Terrik scheduled it? =U XD Glad you like outdoor description, I had fun thinking of odd ways to describe it that were better than saying "it was cold" when they got out there.

Beat canorith up HAHAHA,

Yay glad you liked that I added that. I don't like superficial surface details so I make sure and add otherstuff--stuff more than just "Edge was wondering" XPP
Plus I needed to state that his hands weren't glowing still >_> XD

Yes, seeing a little Edge when you wake up would be amusing I suppose XDDD Yes boring Canorith is not amazingly energeticly greeting Edge =) XD
Haha Terrik and zetra share see Wink their personality and style XD


Lol what was Terrik SUPPOSED to say? XD I picked your lock man, >=. Or I broke through the door dude =U

XDDD

Shadow is not thankful still =U

*points* You said hate too brad =) XD
Edge and Brad have amazing faces
XDD

.0. Edge's name gained build up coolness? WIN =D

Ehg, probably sounds like how I pronounce egg =D *imagines his name as egg now*



yes XDDD Those zetras...don't turn out to be extra nice >_>

HAHA at your description thing again XDD MAN XDD

Yes they got buig luxury table.

as you said.

XD
Humans want fun chairs XDDDDD

I got stuck in a fisher price car thing once >_> one of those with the covered tops and the little door that swings open XD I dun remember why I was in it XDD


Hahahaha XDD yes Darryl r ever so nice =) XD

terrik's real thoughts were probably this: =|

Just like his outlook on everything else is.

Edge wanted the coffee, I'm sure he would've changed his mind had he tasted it. Yes Darryl is maybe >=. XD Yes he did defend and to think.... Well i won't say |D I know Edge actually listened and behaved >_> XDDD It'll be short lived Wink

Well I'm glad I don't bore you. XPP

The next chapter is also boring. I start out Edge's story sort of 'boring' in terms of action. But oh it does pick up |D
And besides the chapter after the next one has some action |D

Lets just say the next two chapters start bringing about why Edge is Edge |D
I'm really glad they suck you in though X3 ......well I mean figuratively speaking >_> Not that you're gone but I'm sure you knew that.


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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Dec 26, 2010 3:24 am

Chapter Thirteen
As one could expect, being in a whole new family wasn’t always as fun and exciting as it may have seemed. Visiting was one thing; actually living there was a story of its own. Edge sighed as he prodded the quilt beneath him. It was cold and unfamiliar, giving no sense of comfort. Besides, it had a strange scent of fresh laundry and cheap coffee whirled together to form a toxically overwhelming odor. He was rather sick of the smell of coffee. It tainted the entire house.

He gazed out the window, visible from his blanket bed on the floor, but it was only for a moment as his eyes picked up the faint outline of a more precious item—the red scarf, now dirt laden, which had been the only thing he had arrived here with. After a few moments he decided to retrieve it, wrapping the thick, red item around his small neck once again. He situated it on himself more securely before hopping to his feet. It still trailed the floor considerably, but it was all he had to remind himself of the comfort his family brought. That or maybe just more misery, he wasn’t sure entirely what it entailed.

Silently, he navigated through the house guided only by the moonlight shimmering through open windows. It cast deep blue shadows that clawed hungrily into retreating edges of darkness. He paused at the hall. Two rooms were straight across from each other at the far end—Canorith’s office and Akura’s room. Continuing into the room directly in front of himself would lead to Canorith’s regular room. The door was partially open already, so he welcomed himself inside.

He could make out the shape of the bed, placed in the very center, and a couple of what humans called “dressers.” He wasn’t sure how they had received such a name considering he had never once seen the wood adorned objects dress anything. Flaky skins storage would’ve been a more appropriate name—no wait, “clothing” storage would have been. He nodded, contented with his recollection of what humans called it.

There was a T.V. stand off to the left and some sort of bookshelf beneath a window on the right; it was harder to see in here, due to a thin flap of fabric over the window, blocking the direct moonlight. He stepped over a pile of books, accidentally knocking one to the floor. It made a light thump. Edge stopped mid step and cringed as he slowly turned his head, daring to see if it had caused a reaction by the humans. All he heard was a rather odd, continuous noise that reminded him of some kind of motorized vehicle—he had heard the people on T.V. describe it as snoring.

After waiting a few more moments to assure all was okay, he approached the bed and grasped one of its wooden legs. If he did it just right, he should be able to sneak on without them noticing. Again he paused for a moment before pulling himself up one limb at a time. Still nothing. He smiled before getting himself comfortably situated near the foot of the bed on the top blanket. It still reeked of coffee, but then again, so did Canorith.

Edge glanced over at where Canorith would be and sighed. No matter how hard he tried, the man just wasn’t the same as his family had been. But…at least he wasn’t lonely. His mouth stretched wide in a yawn before he rested his chin on his outstretched arms and drifted to sleep.

Dazzling morning light warmed the surface of Edge’s helmet fins as he rolled over and then off the bed. The sudden impact pulled him from sleep swiftly, jerking him back to the cold grip of life. It only took a quick glance around to see that Canorith and his wife were gone. Every morning he expected to wake up to find that it was all a dream and that he was back at home, safely tucked in his warm bed. That he’d run out to find all his brothers, fighting over who got first choice of the newest found candy—the candy they knew they weren’t supposed to get into, but did in their father’s absence. That once again, he would open the front door and find not houses and streets, but the flat plains of dried grass—the ones he knew so well—and the small hill where the wind would knock him clear off his feet.

Sighing, he shook his head. With each passing day it seemed to grow more and more evident that this was reality. Pushing himself up, he stumbled through the door, legs still not completely awake and ready to work. In the main room Canorith sat on the tan sofa while Terrik was seated off to his side on a chair from the kitchen. Even Shadow and Vorth were there.

Edge’s mouth curved to a friendly smile as he approached them, “Hi guys.”

Vorth looked over his shoulder, overshooting the directional path in terms of height. He quickly redirected his gaze down, “Hey, Edge!”

Edge’s smile brightened as he gradually made his way over to the others, inching around Shadow—who hadn’t bothered to move—in order to see the large plans set between Canorith and Terrik. They were discussing some potential height issues if a certain style hinge was used.

“What’cha doin?” Edge set himself right between Canorith and the table they had moved out here for the plans.

Canorith motioned for Terrik to wait for a moment before turning his attention to the black armored zetraloid so blissfully ignorant of his nuisance to the operation, “I’m working. Why don’t you go…watch T.V.”

“Nah.” Edge shook his head, “I wanna help!”

Before Canorith found the words he wanted, Terrik spoke up, “Don’t forget our deadline.” He turned in his chair to more easily see the zetraloid to his right, “Shadow, why not show him around the city?”

The quiet zetraloid looked utterly repulsed by the suggestion but nodded with slight hesitation, “If that is what you wish, sir.”

“That’s a great idea.” Canorith was already back to calculating measurements, “Vorth, you can go too.”

The large zetraloid nodded. He was far more enthused than Shadow had been. “Come on, Edge.”

Edge frowned as the two zetraloids made their way towards the door.

“But I—”

Shadow returned wordlessly with a sigh and grabbed the smaller zetraloid by an arm.

“It’ll be fun.” Vorth tried to encourage despite his friend’s less than inviting mannerisms.

Edge wasn’t convinced though as the older zetraloid pulled him along against his will. Before he could object, Shadow had dragged him over to the door.
Canorith sighed as he glanced up from his work. “Edge, try and have fun, okay?”

Edge looked back at the man, frown disappearing. When he received a similar response from Canorith, he bounded the other way and out the door Vorth had just opened, content that the human indeed did still care.

“Hey Shadow.” Canorith called one last time.

The blue eyed zetraloid paused in the doorway, letting the annoyed glint fade as he gave his master his full attention.

“Don’t lose him…it could get both us and him in a lot of trouble.”

“Have no fear, Sir.” Shadow dipped his head, “You have my word.”

It didn’t take long to reach the massive bridge Edge had traveled alone only months earlier. He certainly hoped the other zetraloids knew their way back. Shadow and Vorth, he had learned, were actually Canorith’s zetraloids, but Shadow stayed with Terrik as a sort of protector. Edge wasn’t sure why the man needed protection, but for whatever reason, Canorith had deemed it necessary. Vorth on the other hand seemed to alternate back and forth from being around Canorith’s house on some days to the office building on others. Edge had still yet to see that building.

Bumping into Shadow brought him back to the tour at hand. A quick glance at the zetraloid told him all he needed to know on how Shadow felt about it. Just about any word that was the opposite of happy would work.

“This bridge leads us to central Seaside.” Shadow explained, doing his best to ignore his own displeasure. He had to speak up rather loud with all the raucous traffic.

The bridge was just as huge as Edge had remembered, rising high into dense fog. Although he couldn’t see it today, he knew there was water below—its deep gray waves lapping at the sky on the horizon. Currently though, beneath the bridge it appeared as a gray billow of cloud.

“How come it’s so hard to see?” Edge shouted back.

“Just our weather, kid.” Shadow continued across the bridge with Vorth following behind.

By the time they had reached the other side, the fog had lifted, revealing the same sunny weather that had awoken Edge earlier.

Just as the bridge had been, the city was much as Edge had remembered, at least from their current distance with its massive skyscrapers of all shapes and widths. He wondered why the humans didn’t make them the same size but shrugged. Humans sort of did whatever they wanted after all. Shortly after they had reached the city streets, he paused to stare up at a tall, bare trunked tree.

At its top a bundle of long leaves bristled out and flopped down the sides like giant, green fans. They were in front of a brownish building with at least fourteen rows of windows—all of which were set between four columns of equal height. In the front, several people were lined up and waiting to enter.

Vorth stopped to look as well, but Shadow was in more of a hurry, “There are many places more worthwhile seeing than this, come.”

When Edge didn’t move immediately, Shadow returned to usher him along by means of towing him about by his hand. Edge was about to object, but thought better of it, rather letting himself be guided by the more experienced zetraloid. At least by being with them no human tried to stop or confront him.

“Ever been in a mall?” Vorth asked casually as he pulled a leaf off of a decorative tree and rubbed it between his rather large fingers. The small leaf disintegrated into a green smear, leaving the slightest hint of a leafy scent.

“A what?” Edge asked, clearly confused by the term.

Vorth and Shadow exchanged a quick glance, a mix of surprise and a slight grin.

“Come on.” The instruction was rather needless as Shadow had yet to release Edge’s hand anyway.

He guided them across a busy street and passed several small shops slammed together to the sides of busy roads. Many humans were riding bikes or walking. Such transportation seemed to move faster than the traffic anyway. Edge looked both ways, following the example of the others before crossing another road. A huge parking garage lay before them.

Edge gazed around himself curiously as they walked along the echoing, cold, cement slab. The ceiling above—which was also the road for the next row—felt oddly close. He resisted the urge to crouch down and away from it. He was used to an open sky with the fresh, frosty wind blowing in his face. Something so enclosed and stale smelling was an entirely new experience.

“This is the mall?” He asked, giving a newly parked car a quick glare as its motor trailed off into silence. It had a pungent odor he was even less fond of than coffee.

Vorth had to stifle a laugh, while Shadow didn’t seem to mind giving the young zetraloid a scornful glance, “Where on Yohorayi are you from?” He looked forward again as he steered them out of another car’s path. “This is a parking garage. Humans park their cars here when they go to their destinations.”

Edge thought about that for a moment. It made sense, he supposed. Where else could the humans store them?

“So…where’s the mall then?”

“Not too far from here.” Shadow answered, his voice a touch more pleasant than before.

“You’ll know when we’re there.” Vorth added.

“How?”

“It’s huge.”

“And dazzling in a variety of colors.”

Edge paused, “What?”

“I think he means it’s colorful.” Vorth replied.

“Oh.”

It wasn’t long before they had crossed to the other side of the garage. Daylight pierced through in vivid rays as they approached the exit. Shadow had released Edge from his grasp, and now he found himself having to run just to keep pace with the two of them. He didn’t see any brightly colored buildings anywhere though. Just the back of a gray one. Regardless, he followed after them with unspoken doubt.

They rounded a few more corners before he saw it. Yes, this had to be it—a massive building with a somewhat cylinder shape to it. It was covered in windows all the way up. Small patios swiveled around the outside, one solid section for each level. On some of the lower levels, he could see humans looking over the side, many with a drink or some form of portable food. Lastly he noticed a thinner and taller building of similar appearance attached to the first via some kind of enclosed brightly lit walkway.

Shadow had been right about the colors. Giant signs on the outside walls flashed about current sales, and through enormous windows on the ground level, he spotted colored lights emitting from various locations that were washing the glass in a rainbow of hues. Several benches were strewn about the outer front, many of which were occupied by zetraloids and humans alike. A large fountain, water peacefully spattering into a square pool, rested in the center with brick pathways wrapping around the structure and merging into a giant strip on the other side.

Edge’s mouth hung open as he tilted his head back to get a better look. “Wow…”

“It’s even cooler inside.” Vorth added.

“Do you guys come here a lot?” Edge asked as he followed the zetraloids to the main entrance. A blast of echoing noise erupted with the warm breeze being forced out by the quick parting of sliding doors.

Vorth cast Shadow a hesitant glance, but the ambiguous zetraloid merely kept walking, head tilted down, and arms neatly folded in front of himself.

“No.” He answered at last, “Not really.”

“How come?” Edge asked, but the question was quickly forgotten as he caught sight of the inside and bounded through the doors. “Oh wow!”

Light from above splotched the floor in shades of blue, green, orange, pink and yellow. Tiny stores stood uniformly side by side, each with a different title and contents while unfamiliar smells wafted from a clump of counters with a sign dangling above labeled, “food court.” Most overwhelming of those floating in the midst of the warm air was a salty scent tinted by a hint of oil.

He scanned the area for anything that stood out as a point of interest. The trees were not expected for sure; certainly they were intended for outside, weren’t they? Regardless, there were rows of the bushy topped trees he had seen outside, now incased in small square planters.

Edge’s eyes pulsed with bright red patterns as his excitement flooded out any preceding caution he had possessed. Forgetting all about waiting for the others, he set off at a sprint straight ahead. After a few moments, he came to a sudden halt now inches in front of a transparent wall that separated him from a lit display of computers with customizable skins.

“Thirteen-Ten would’ve loved this!” The excitement faded from his eyes at the mention of his brother; however his pause had given Shadow and Vorth time to catch up.

“Really Edge, is running off like that so necessary?” Shadow cast a glance at the display, “It isn’t like they were going anywhere.”

“Sorry.” He apologized, the single word muttered and drawn long as he gazed sullen at the floor. He was surprised to find his reflection staring back at him.

A loud voice echoed from further in the mall, drawing his attention away from the reflective surface tiles. Shadow’s eyes narrowed while Vorth got the slightest hint of a frown. Curious as to what would cause such displeasure, Edge searched for its source. With all the crowds, such a task was easier said than done.

At last he spotted the zetraloid—the one he had heard speak rather loudly moments before. He had a thin build for sure, and to Edge’s surprise, a pure black face that matched his equally black helmet. Thin lines of neon green trailed his face and armor in what appeared almost symbolic in pattern. He wore a shirt and pants with the same blocky patterns of rotating squares connected by descending lines. A cluster of ragged hair tumbled down the front of his helmet, reaching the bottom of his chin in some places. It spanned even farther the opposite direction, coming to rest near his waist. It was the same green and black color that his entire theme seemed to be; likewise his eyes glowed green and his visible armor pulsed with what appeared to be a green liquid running beneath transparent covers.

“Hey guys, imagine the chances, eh?”

He sounded friendly enough. Why were Vorth and Shadow so upset? Deciding it best to wait, Edge didn’t answer. At last the unusual zetraloid stood before them, an evident smirk on his dark featured face. Now that he was closer, Edge noticed two small clips on his right helmet fin, and a circular puncture beside it. His other fin looked as if something had clipped a sliver out of its tip.

“Been awhile since I saw you two around here.”

“I assure you, it is not our destination of choice.” Shadow hesitated, “We’re tour guides today.”


“Tour guides? Seriously?” The other snorted before breaking out in laughter, “In all Yohorayi, for what?

“Him.” Shadow indicated Edge with a lack of humor for the situation at hand.

“Oh, the new kid, heh. Nice.” His attention turned to Edge. “I’ve heard about you—from the others.”

“What oth— ”

Edge got no further as Shadow had pulled the dark zetraloid’s oversized red scarf up, muffling his voice. He glared at Shadow but didn’t ask why he had done it. It hadn’t seemed very nice and he saw no justifiable reasoning behind such an act.

The green and black zetraloid’s eyes were only half open, as if bored, however the smug grin hinted of other tendencies. “Your humans workin’ on those plans? Deadline coming up soon ya know.”

“They are working plenty fast.” Shadow answered short and to the point, “It should be of no concern to you, Cipher.”

Cipher went on as if nothing had been said, “It’d be a shame if I had to help cut down on distractions.” He grinned as he singled out Edge with a solid stare, “Maybe a good old fashion job…” Casually, he looked up as if in thought, “We could start with something simple…a broken hand, a broken leg.” His smirk intensified as his conspiring plot continued to form, “If we don’t get our point across then, well…heh heh.”

Edge took a hesitant step back as his previous confident demeanor faded quickly into insecurity. That taller zetraloid could probably snap him in half like a stick or a twig. No, he didn’t have a chance against the creature. Fortunately, Vorth stepped between him and Cipher and to his relief, Vorth was still far larger than the other. With Shadow there they could easily win a fight if they had to…right?

“Hey. Leave him out of this. What’s he done to you, Ciph?”

Cipher emitted a rather quiet and yet oddly shrill chuckle, “Oh nothing, Vorthy, that’s the fun of it.”

Edge watched this strange zetraloid warily. Was he serious? And what had he done to anger the zetraloid?

Shadow spoke up next. “One should not make threats that they cannot uphold to.” He motioned to the others as he set about walking once more.

Vorth pushed past Cipher, letting Edge scamper along before him.

“Oh it wasn’t a threat.” Cipher called after them, grin coiling into a devious sneer, “It was a promise.”

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:26 am

Yes as one could expect, a new family would have some shockers and smacks back to reality I can imagine. Nice job with the quilt and odor description. =. It was very easy to picture and I could almost smell it too. o.0
The scarf...if has many memories for this little Edge. =U Understandably of course. Silently. =. I love being silent during the night for some reason, like while walking and stuff. I dunno why. Edge likes too? =) Nice description about the moonlight. =O I was able to picture a really cool scene just now. xD Ha ha. Nice new name for a dresser Edge. =) xDD Flaky skins storage.

Motorized vehicle. xDD

Edge: If Canorith were racing with that motor, he'd be winning. =U

Aw Edge just wanted company. =O The way you've got it set up with him sneaking in there and stuff is pretty thought provoking. xD Hopefully Canorith doesn't get mad about it or do something even more stupid. Poor Edge. =U Waking up alone, only to find it was not a dream. How long will he do that, or think about that when he wakes up, before he can move on? Quite a while I would assume. At least Canorith didn't wake him up and send him to his bed or anything.

Friendly Edge. Okay, this is good. Warm welcome anyone? *reads while peeking through fingers* HA HA Vorth midjudged height. =) At least he was friendly. =. Edge is blissfully ignorant. xD Indeed he is.

Terrik: Don't forget our dead line. =U He must have a proper burial.

Hey Terrik, don't send Shadow. D= A recipe for disaster what is your problem?! GOOD Vorth can go too. xD Vorth has never seen the city before. =) xD I kid. Gosh I am epic relieved Vorth is going too. xD Yeah Edge, lighten up buddy. Wink Hmmm...I don't know how good Shadow is with honor or respect. Is his word trustworthy? I dunno. =. xD YAY SHADOW AND VORTH BG INFO.

Shadow was...happy Edge bumped into him? =) xD I kid obviously. Poor Edgy. =. What's this? Shadow held back his anger to give Edge a tour? Perhaps I have underestimated you Shadow. I really like Shadow's comment about more worthwhile places to see. xD Not sure why, it just sorta made me go: =. OOOoooo.

A mall. =O Either Edge will love this place or hate it. Poor Edge. xD He doesn't know. D= BTW you did GREAT with the parking garage description, as well as the car motor and the smell. 0.0 Seriously that is some superb writing. =P Colorful. xD Unspoken doubt, that's probably a good thing with Shadow around, though he has surprised me with his kindness.

The mall amazes Edge. =D xDD I find that amusing for some reason. Trees meant for te outdoors. xD Hmmm I want something that matches the smell description now. =U I like the way Shadow talks. xD Reflection. =O Ohhhh nice detail I would have missed that for sure, had I been writing. xD AHHHH there is Cipher. He just reeks of troublemaking. xD Shadow is growing on me that's for sure. 0.0

Come now Cipher, enough with the jokes. Edge could kick your butt anyway. =U Or so I'll pretend. =)

"That taller zetraloid could probably snap him in half like a stick or a twig. No, he didn’t have a chance against the creature. " <--- AHEM that doesn't help. >=U

Stupid Cipher. >=. Hurting cause he can. A promise eh? I do not see this turning out good. .-. Anyway you still did the entire situation very well and I could feel the tension through my computer screen. You did a great job with everything in the chapter and as usual, I really enjoyed it. Very Happy Thanks!

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Dec 26, 2010 5:55 am

Well its one of the few smells I'm familiar with >_> XDDD And one that stands out to me when I stay at people's houses so I incoperated it in. Silently makes Brad have good memories =) XD Glad you can picture scene Well. Without the capitalized letter. I've been working on that.

XDD Edge is indeed lonely and wants company =P even if everyone STINKS according to him c: XD Yes Edge is having a hard time adjusting >_>

Reads while peeking through fingers @_@ HAHA. Poor dead line =c And yes vorth is friendly XD
You are relieved that Shadow I mean Vorth is going? =) Maybe because he won't ditch Edge and say he DIED randomly? c: XDD
Shadow ain't extra trust worthy >_> to some extent anyway. He has a tendancy to twist what is said anyway and leave out a lot of details.
Shadow was pleased beyond all reasoning. Brad wants to see more worthwhile places XDDD
Shadow is easily annoyed for sure, he's no kid person >_> And yes Edge'll love or hate. Or something. Glad I described well because I've been working on it.

Edge: MALL 0.0

Its shiny of course h elikes it |D XDD Silly Brad. Trees are meant for outdoors =) XD
Yay for reflection!
You like how Shadow talks? =O Amazing XD And yes Cipher does reek of troublemaking >_> Little Edge haw haw. Sure we'll go with that. HAW HAW then Edge doesn't help you with his thoughts.

Cipher didn't hurt anyone =) he just promised them stuff =D Cipher's actually kind of fun to write about just because of how openly BAD he shows himself to be XDDD

And no it does not sound good does it?

Edge: *dies*

Brad: 0.0 I knew it!



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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Wed Jan 05, 2011 7:43 pm

Chapter Fourteen
Note to Brad and others, may have errors didn't have time to check stupid lack of internet.


Edge followed close behind Canorith. He had never gone to a place quite like this before. It was eerie—almost chilling really—and far too quiet for his liking—but maybe that was just from watching too many scary movies with Thirteen-Ten and the others. It wasn’t dark like he expected most places that were scary or bad to be. Rather everything was white and radiantly clean—perhaps more like a type of medical based horror film. The walls were white, the tile was white, and the panel lights overhead were so bright that they appeared white too. He stepped around a small vent on the floor, silently wondering what its purpose was and almost jumped when he heard Canorith speak in a low whisper.

“Stay close, and don’t say anything.”

He nodded. That was easy enough, right? He didn’t want to go anywhere alone in this place anyway. In the center of the rather rectangular room were three silver tables, slightly tarnished, that had several large, adjustable bars stretched over their tops. As well, thick, dull gray chains dangled lifelessly to the sides. Low hanging lamps swayed over the three silver tables and also over one, long, white table. None were presently on.

There were a few other machines Edge didn’t recognize, one had a few books stacked on it and visible graphs and meters displaying on a screen. What did they do in here? Edge’s mind could wander to quite a few things…none being particularly pleasant. He decided to shake them away and follow after Canorith. The last thing he wanted was to get separated from him. They climbed three flights of stairs— each with an equally clean and white appearance—until they met Terrik. The man looked far more unsettled than normal as he drummed the briefcase with his fingertips.

“You brought him?

Canorith didn’t answer, rather adjusting his tie—a nervous habit amongst many humans it seemed. Edge himself was beginning to wonder the same thing as Terrik though. This didn’t seem like a good place for him to be. He’d have far preferred to have stayed home. Regardless, Canorith carried on in complete disregard of the environment and question at hand.

The hallway they were walking through was unlike the floor below in almost every way—narrow, stuffy, warm and dark. It was barely lit at all, guided only by dim, orange lights on the floor. They ran the length of both confining sides—just small little stubs, much resembling that of a theater. The floor vibrated beneath his feet—perhaps a heater system elsewhere. Regardless to what it was, it was faintly heating the thin, hard carpet.

At last they reached a door. Terrik, who had taken the lead, paused for a moment to glance back at the faint silhouette of Canorith and the glowing red eyes of their zetraloid companion. He shook his head then knocked. A voice from the other side welcomed him to open it.

“I hope you have a plan.” Terrik muttered to Canorith as he stepped inside.

A blinding flash of light burst forth from the room as Terrik opened the door, forcing Edge to shut his eyes. He blinked several times, trying to get them readjusted to the brightness. After a few more moments of complete blindness he vision began to return. He had to squint to see anything at all, but slightly grayed shapes were forming amidst the painfully bright light. At last he could see Canorith and then Terrik, both of the humans were blinking likewise and shielding their eyes.

As color began to return, he noticed a man sitting at a wide, oak desk—polished to the point of reflecting the light. The man had clasped his hands together, setting them firmly on his desk as he waited. Edge thought he could detect a slight hint of amusement in his smile.

“Ah, you made it.” He said at last once it had seemed the humans had regained their vision. “Do make yourself at home.”

Darryl Vogon, Edge recognized at last. There were five other zetraloids, all fairly tall, spread out around the back of Darryl’s black chair. Two additional chairs were on the opposite side—the side Edge and the others were on. With a hint of surprise, he realized that this entire room was rather large for something as simple as an office desk. There was a shelf of resource books, but other than that, all was rather bare—simply unused, open space. There were a couple decorative plants resting atop gold plated stands, and a few paintings clung to the walls—windowless walls.

Edge frowned as he took a step closer towards Canorith. It was also warm in here—very warm. Almost uncomfortably warm as far as Edge was concerned, and the lack of windows triggered something close to alarm in his own mind. It was like being trapped—trapped in a little cage being dangled over a boiling death, or perhaps… cooking inside a blazing furnace. He shivered as the image crossed his mind again. He needed to focus on something else.

Canorith had taken a seat in front of the desk while Terrik stood beside him. Edge didn’t give much thought as to why the man preferred to stand when there was a chair there for him. His mannerisms were a different story, clearly worth paying attention to. Something wasn’t right. The man was unmistakably fidgety, even a bit shaken perhaps. But why? Terrik was generally confident at Canorith’s house and he always had the information he needed. So why would he be so concerned now?

He pondered what would provoke such reactions as the humans carried on. He didn’t understand what they were trying to achieve anyway. They spoke back and forth, each with a slight variation in opinion than the other. On occasion, all three would agree, but it seemed most of the time one side would reluctantly give in. Regardless, the conversation was ping ponging back and forth too quickly to the point Edge’s head felt as if it were spinning.

Shaking his head, he looked the opposite way, determined to keep his senses about him. He cast a quick glance at the other zetraloids—they were tolerating this discussion with ease and indifference. Taking a closer look, he wondered if they had been the zetraloids he had met earlier. A lot of them had the same general appearances he had remembered.

A sharp pound tore him from his thoughts. Darryl had slammed his fist down on his desk. Canorith and Terrik alike looked almost stunned and if nothing else, at least surprised. The action had stopped progress of the argument all together. There was a visible tension building. He could almost feel it, and he was certain the others could see it.

He had gathered that sometimes zetraloids were needed to protect the humans, but was this what Shadow had meant? Protecting them from each other? Intervening in fights? What was it exactly that he was supposed to protect them from?

He flinched as voices went from raised to shouting—both Darryl and Canorith alike. Terrik was trying to intervene, but his milder tone—Edge doubted it was even capable of the same levels of the others—was simply drown out by the riotous hollering.

The zetraloids behind Darryl were growing far more agitated, shifting from foot to foot and stretching out their joints. They almost looked as if they were preparing for battle. Dismayed, Edge took another hesitant step back towards Terrik and Canorith. Those zetraloids were all taller than him, and he was tall for his age at that. If he were forced to confront them, he’d be at a clear disadvantage.

“Canorith, just go with it.” That was Terrik. It would’ve been hard for the man across the desk to hear, but Edge had managed to pick up the rushed whisper.

Canorith must not have taken Terrik’s advice however because he saw Terrik sigh and then sit down, back slouched as if he had given up all hope. Why was it so important that Canorith agree with Darryl? He was fairly confident that humans didn’t always share the same opinion on matters.

“That’s impossible.” Canorith answered, there was a distinct hint to his tone that suggested he really did believe what he was saying.

“Nothing’s impossible with a little enthusiasm.” Darryl laughed, although it was more of a lighthearted formality than finding what had been said funny.

The zetraloids beside him had begun to fan out to either side of the desk, making it difficult for Edge to keep an eye on everything at once. They were slowly making their way over to enclose Edge, Canorith and Terrik, in a barrier of their own bodies; only one had remained beside their master.

“Perhaps not impossible for you.” Canorith clarified, “My resources are a bit more…limited than yours.”

“Then we’ll find some.” Terrik spoke up, his voice faltering, “It’s better than—”

“We can’t.” Whether it was frustration or anger directed at his employee, Edge couldn’t tell, regardless Terrik had received a full show of disagreement by Canorith. Complete with open palmed hands shaken once firmly in front of himself in a manner that humans often did when wordlessly asking what the other expected them to do. “Besides, it wouldn’t be fair to my family.”

“Your excuses tire me, my dear friends.” Darryl’s enthusiasm faded as he took on a look of solemn distress.

Edge backed up until he was against the side of the chair. Why were the other zetraloids getting so close? If they had looked friendly it would have been one thing, but their faces gleamed with a certain unannounced satisfaction and anticipation—the kind of devious smirk that came before wreaking havoc.

“I am a business man, just as yourselves, I have to make a profit—in a time efficient manner at that.”

Edge was barely hearing what Darryl was saying as his anxiety was focused on the four zetraloids approaching from either side. They very well may have been planning to attack the humans from what he had heard of Shadow’s role in protection. Was he expected to do the same? No way could he tackle that many alone. He didn’t even know how to fight.

“I want nothing more than to help you become successful, you know that.” The man gestured to Canorith and Terrik with a subtle wave, proceeded by a thematic sigh, “But you will never become that if you keep letting all these…distractions arise.”

The zetraloids around the three had stopped, still in a stance ready for quick maneuverability. The room fell silent as Darryl opened a drawer on his side of the desk. Casually, his hand moved to visibility again, now holding a pen with gold trim.

Terrik’s gaze was trained straight to Darryl’s every move as he clutched a manila folder to the point of crumpling it. Beside him, Canorith’s expression was unreadable. The zetraloid near Darryl’s chair rested his arms criss-crossed over a long pole, probably a couple inches wide. His half eye opened gaze was set off by a smug grin.

Darryl examined the pen before clicking the end to make the tip protrude. “If you can’t manage both, then I’ll start by eliminating the easier of the problems.”

To Edge’s surprise, when the man had stated such, all the zetraloids’ gazes fell upon him in a unanimous tilt. Just as they’d done so, Darryl snapped his fingers twice. One of the four surrounding zetraloids pulled him away from the chairs by his shoulder, nearly sending him to the floor before he caught himself. No sooner had he done so before another had swept his legs out from underneath him. He hit the floor in a pitiful display of floundering limbs.

In what seemed mere seconds, a third had covered the small distance from the other side and sent Edge tumbling forward before he had even gotten to his knees.

“You know, that’s the funny thing about enterprise.” Darryl’s voice broke through for a moment, even with a slight chuckle. “You end up losing to gain one way or another.”

Edge ducked just in time to avoid a strong blow to the head and sprang out of the way of one of the others. Although some of the general avoidance maneuvers were the same as those he used in the tackle tag he used to play with his siblings, these zetraloids were, without doubt, not playing.

Changing their tactic, they moved as a single, impenetrable wall. Every direction Edge looked, one of the four had barricaded themselves around him, preventing any escape. Each time he turned, a strike fell heavy from behind, but there was no escape from it. The left, the right, somewhere in between, he didn’t even have time to see which had hit him before another kick had jerked him the complete opposite direction.

Next thing he knew, the zetraloids had parted, allowing him to smash into the left wall. A bulky file cabinet tilted precariously forward until the weight of it set it off balance. Edge tucked his feet in closer to himself just in time to avoid the crushing force of whatever contents it had held.

“Oh, not the cabinet…” Darryl trailed off with slight disapproval.

A full force kick struck Edge squarely in his side; the impact knocked the air that would’ve been used to form a cry from his breathing system as he was forced forward in an awkward, sideways roll. Once he came to a stop, he remained where he was—lying on the floor—and took shallow gasps until the ache died down enough to return to normal. The tunnel of black enclosing in on his vision had subsided.

He rolled over, taking a deep breath of the air he didn’t realize he’d ever miss so badly. Staring down at him were no longer four, but five zetraloids, each waiting until he had come back around. Unsteadily, he raised himself to a poor-balanced stand. In the silence that had befallen him and his foes, he heard Terrik, if only for a brief moment, trying to convince Canorith to agree once more.

The newest zetraloid to join the others sneered—his dark face twisting into an ugly, tainted smirk—before giving a quick motion based command to one of the others. At once the commanded zetraloid brought his leg around in a swoop, building moment before collision. Edge was instantly knocked back, feeling his shoulder crash into the floor first and then slip forward, creating a sensation equivalent to that of human flesh being stripped from its proper location.

His vision flashed black for a moment before the faint silhouettes in the bright room returned yet again. Most sound had faded from around him—he was acutely aware of only the zetraloids, particularly their sardonic laughter. His limbs felt weak, unable to support their own weight. Could he even feel them? An icy dread had taken control.

With no coordination to speak of, he tried rolling over; a sharp pain stabbed at his shoulder. It wouldn’t respond to any conscious command he gave it. Pain came spilling like an over flowing fountain, washing down his entire arm and trickling out through his circuits. He flopped back down in defeat, covering the hurt arm with his own body.

Their laughter echoed in his head as he shut his eyes. Why were they laughing at him? What was funny about this? The world felt like it was spinning even with his eyes shut. He squinted harder, but to no avail, the world was still careening out of control like a plane in a tailspin.

“What’s the matter, kid?” One of the zetraloids taunted as the others continued on in their jeering laughter.

Edge forced his eyes open, vision dragging at a slower rate of awareness than his head was moving. The lights suddenly seemed even worse than before; just having his eyes open was making his head throb bleakly.

One of the zetraloids grabbed the collar of his vest and yanked him up. His feet brushed the floor limply for a good few moments as the zetraloid bobbed him up and down, encouraging him to stand on his own. At last, sensation returned to his feet, although prickly as if he were standing on needles.

“I can’t fi—sto…st.” Edge’s response came out in a mixed jumble of incomplete words, but the other zetraloids were able to decode it with ease.

“Stop? He wants us to stop!” More laughter.

Edge tried letting himself collapse again, all his joints ached, begging for rest, but the zetraloid who had the collar of his vest refused to let go. He could only look at them, defeat and hopelessness on full display across his face. Resisting was pointless; to them he was nothing more than a toy to be tossed around.

Canorith and Terrik were talking again, he could hear them now, although their words he couldn’t decipher. For a moment he caught sight of Darryl, still fiddling with the same pen. It was a brief glance as now a zetraloid had grabbed his head and tilted it back. Edge tried shaking the hand off. His first try was futile, but the second was enough to detour the zetraloid.

Almost instantly he regretted doing so. The zetraloid grabbed him by his arm and flung him across the room. Again he collided with a wall, this time above a standing height, leaving a large crumbling indentation. He slid to the floor in a wilting heap.

The zetraloids were all headed towards him again. No. He couldn’t keep going like this. With his remaining energy, he looked to Canorith and Terrik, surely they would help him. Why weren’t they doing anything? Neither of the two were even standing! They hadn’t moved at all.

He cringed as one of the zetraloids picked him up, letting the fifth arrival take his time in prolonging the agony by entering a chambered stance and then hurling a punch, palm down, towards Edge’s stomach. As a final protection measure, Edge curled himself up to lessen the impact, but in his weakened state the success was not all that significant. Tears now streaming down his face, he was reduced to sobbing little bundle.

The four zetraloids looked to their leader. His expression, one of visible enjoyment, became infected with a poison oozing sneer as he made a quick, jerky hand motion towards the floor with his thumb.

“Drop him.”

As soon as the command had been uttered, the zetraloid holding Edge loosened his grip and let the smaller, black armored zetraloid collapse on the floor. The one who had instructed the other to do so—a neon green and black zetraloid—tapped him with his foot until he had the limp little zetraloid laid out on his back.

Upon doing so, he firmly planted his foot atop the other’s chest, applying minimal pressure as he picked up the pole he had earlier held in his possession. He raised it up to his own head level, grasping it by its middle.

Edge flinched as the zetraloid brought it down, stopping mere inches before hitting his face. The others laughed as the zetraloid standing on him took his time in raising it higher, this time wrapping both hands around the tool to drive it through the smaller zetraloid.

Edge tried to squirm free, but didn’t have the strength or energy required in doing such. He watched as the blunt object plummeted in a downward strike aimed straight for his head. As quickly as he could, he shut his eyes and tried turning his head to the side, awaiting the impact and fate that was sure to follow.

“Wait!”

The voice split through Edge’s apprehension. With surprise, he realized that the pole hadn’t struck him. Casting a glance up, he saw that it had come to a complete stop about six inches from his face. The zetraloid holding the pole still had unwavering focus on him alone. His neon green helmet fins twitched once.

“Yes?” Darryl spared Canorith the attention beforehand directed to the pen.

“Don’t…don’t do this.” Canorith used his thumb to gesture towards the zetraloids and Edge. “It’s not his fault—I, erm…”

“We’ll get it done.” Terrik’s voice had leveled out now and by far sounded certain.

“Mighty confident of that now, aren’t you?” Darryl signaled to the zetraloid with a mere flick of his hand, informing the creature of the answer he awaited.

Although milder now, there were still traces of the previous sneer as the zetraloid stomped down harder. It was then while Edge was wincing, doing his best to claim breaths so further labored by the sheer weight on top of him, that he realized he knew this zetraloid. The black face, the green patterns, it should have been obvious earlier—it was Cipher! In a flash, the zetraloid has raised his weapon again and sent it crashing back down with a resounding clank and shattering crush. The tool resisted for only a moment before plunging through its target as if it were warm butter.

Edge cried out, although not as loud as one may have expected, as he kicked to get out from under the zetraloid’s foot. Cipher yanked his pole up and out of the center of Edge’s hand that had been efficiently pinned to the floor as he stepped off of him, “Nice seeing you again, Edge.”

That said, he strode back beside Darryl and resumed his position with confidence and triumph. The others chuckled and followed behind, their objective clearly complete.

“Really, Cipher, was that so necessary?” Although not upset, Darryl did voice his opinion.

The zetraloid only gave a shrug, somehow managing to shed a conceited sense of self righteousness in the gesture.

Edge lingered in the spot he had been left, hand limply dangling in front of his face. Tiny metal plates, bent and mangled, stabbed into the inner workings of his hand and plasma streamed down it. The blue substance—a mixture of icy yet green tinted shades resembling stagnant bay waters—stained his glove, deepening its black color and making the surface almost sticky to the touch. He blinked several times as he rolled over; hand clasped in the grasp of his other. Speechless for a moment and in a clear state of shock, he merely rolled back and forth, at last uttering a soft whimper as he tried moving his fingers.

Terrik was there in a moment’s time, leaving Canorith to sign papers at the desk. Although still dazed himself, Edge could clearly see fear radiating from Terrik. He didn’t think it was caused because of his own injury though, but rather the situation. The man tugged off his coat with a small amount of trouble and wrapped it around Edge’s hand.

“Ow!” Edge cried again, before receiving a warning glance from Terrik.

Although the man had never struck him as one to do anything if undesirable behavior continued, he found himself resuming silence.

“You’re fine.” Terrik murmured as he tried to help the zetraloid back up. “Come on.”

Edge made no attempt of doing as he was told. He still wasn’t sure if he could feel his limbs or not—the ones aside from his hand anyway. He could feel the pressurized throb of that perfectly; it was the rest of his body that felt cold and weak. With Terrik pulling at his other arm, he finally gave in to the human’s new found obsession of having him move and forced himself up. His legs struggled to hold him upright and he stumbled forward a few feet before nearly collapsing again. Prior to doing so, he managed to catch himself, and tottered along a bit before his senses started coming back around.

He stood beside Terrik, watching as Canorith signed yet another set of papers. A close eye was kept on the zetraloids just beyond the desk. Cipher was running his hand along the length of his pole, reminding Edge of the pain in his hand even more so. Merely watching was enough to stimulate a glacial ache through his entire arm. Plasma had already soaked through the coat, its weight now amplified against his tender injury.

Once Canorith was finished, he pushed the papers across the desk and leaned back in his chair, a look of evident disgust and regret on his face. He rubbed his forehead, creases forming in the center from strain.

Darryl nodded his head as he looked the papers over. Settling for the fact they were acceptable, he placed them in a drawer out of sight then clasped his hands. He leaned in towards the desk, wordless for a moment as he watched the young, black armored zetraloid with the others.

“I’m willing to make this work, if you are.” Darryl’s deceivingly innocent eyes leveled with Canorith’s gaze, “But if you can’t manage both, I’m not about to let you throw your plans away.” With a subtle motion of his head he added, “I can have them take care of any issues that continue to be a problem.”

Canorith nodded once and cast a glance to the other two, “Thank you for your time.” He set off at a brisk pace to the door, Edge and Terrik following close behind.

“I trust we’ll see results within a month?” Darryl called from his desk, “It’d be a shame to have to take care of your new little friend there.”

Edge’s eyes widened as he tried hiding behind Terrik. One of the zetraloids had made a move towards them. Terrik ushered him through the open door before going through himself.

“They will be.” Canorith answered, although his voice didn’t seem quite as confident as he followed and shut the door behind them.

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Thu Jan 06, 2011 12:03 am

Hoooray! New chapter. =) Can't wait for you to get your internet back. =P AHEM chapter. >_>

So we start of this surely peaceful tale (chapter) with an innocent strappng young lad following his most looked up to hero. Or something similar anyway....or not. xD Too many scary movies. Edge doesn't seem like one to be scared of movies actually. o.0 Not even young Edge. I don't doubt what you said I'm just a little surprised. xD Medical places. @_@ *Brad and Whiskey back up* >=. WHISKEY stop being a wimp.

Whiskey: =U You backed up.

Ahem. >_> Dumb place. =U Smells like doom from where I'm sitting.

Wrath: Stop sitting in my house. =|

>_> Oh. That makes sense.

OKAY back to chapter. xD Distractions distractions. Yeah I can imagine what those tables are for. >_> Nothing with bars or chains is good.

Whiskey: Actually bars are one of my favorite places to hang ou-

SHUSH. @_@ You brought...a moody youngling EWWW. Edge is smarter than Canorith. =U He knows he shouldn't be there even...unless...Canorith PLANNED this discomfort. 0.0 Wow interesting place with the weird lights. Darryl. >=. I was warned about your....lights. Wow I want to call him Darryl Hide badly for some reason. o.0 =. Wasted space. I can clearly imagine this scene and it is quite..interesting. =P Nooo windows how great. Like a prison. >_> xD

Wow Edge you need to stop thinking sometimes. =U I didn't need to start thinking that now. Poor Edge cannot keep up with sophisticated human speakings.

Stalker: >_> I detect sophistication levels comparable to that of a field mouse.

Canorith vs Darryl in a yell war. =U How great. Hey Edge, want an example of what to do? Watch these guys. I joke dude don't watch them. 0.0 Oh Darryl don't be such a drama king. =U He mustn't get too worked up or his sweat might stain his petticoat. Poor Edge. What a situation. xD If I were him I don't know what I would do. =U Did Canorith and Terrik not bring good help to avoid further conflictions or what? Oh let's bring Edge that's a fantastic idea. xD

Stupid Darryl, quit being happy about poor Edge getting tossed around and stuff. >=. Edge had nothing to do with this, stupid Canorith too...bringing Edge in for this reason I'll bet. I wonder if Canorith is at all antsy or anything about watching his own zetra get attacked like that. =U Oh filing cabinet...I wish Wrath would BURN it. >=. How do you like them darryls, Apple?

So Terrik ends up being the good one. =U Who'd have thought? Besides you Ten. >_> And...and you Stalker. And you Naraku, we know you're always right. And Wrath, of course we'll all agree you knew...for obvious reasons. Anyone else? Oh Challenger, yeah you knew as well. *eye roll* Vote for team Terrik.

Wow nice desctiption of pain. =O Seriously that was easy to imagine and poor Edge. >_> Wow and the vision dragging slower than his awareness. Amazing job with that. 0.0 I can see Edge getting tossed around as all the stuck up people in the room watch without a care. =U If only there was a nice Wrath, they couldn't get away with such things. Oh so now you do it huh Canorith? Now he's all beat up too, took you that long to realize it was a bad idea? Psssh. And you Darryl, act like the good guy when you've got everyone obeying you. Real typical. You could do good getting roughed up a bit you know?

Oh Darryl, pretend you care. Goooood boy. >_> Can you tell you've made me mad at him? xD And you stupid Cipher...I'm so impressed you beat up a kid. WOW my hero. =| Oh Edge you can walk it off. Wink xD

Plasma had already soaked through the coat, its weight now amplified against his tender injury. <---- Dang you think of some great details. =O

I wonder what he has a month to do.....maybe it's be smart. BWAHAHAHA.....okay so it wasn't that funny. =U SO....YOU....yes...YOU.....did a fantastic job with this. Very Happy As you predicted I did indeed enjoy this chapter greatly. xD It really brought out my emotions too as I felt epically bad for Edge and was pretty furious at Canorith and Darryl and his zetras. I look forward to knowing the details of why Edge must be killed off...and/or what Canorith must do. Very Happy Amazing job with everything, like the details...wow they added a lot. xD Thank you very much for posting so I may read!! =D

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sat Jan 08, 2011 2:25 am

Yes it is surely to be peaceful just like everything else I create =) strapping young lad hahaha. Maybe not scared as much as paranoid >_> XDD Yes clearly whiskey is being a wimp. At medical places. And not brad. Yes Wrath rents it out part time Wink *tries imagining nice things with bars and chains =U yep you’re right |D

Silly whiskey. XD I know him and his moody younglings GOSH. And yes Edge is smarter. Makes you wonder why it was national lets not use our brain day for Canorith. Yay for weird lights. Brad senses a Darryl XD Darryl Hide haha XD nice name. No windows indeed .0. I’m glad you can see it. Er you know what I mean. Haha Edge gives brad even worse thoughts c:

HAW HAW go stalker controlled by Brad XDD Yell wars—a favorite amongst humans. HAHA his petticoat XDD and to think we were talking about Cipher and his beautiful hands, who knew this trend followed amongst them all.

I know srsly. There was a reason why Terrik was so displeased with Canorith’s choice in help. One Brad sees clearly. XDD Yes r flying. And erm, gee Canorith is having a dumb day sooo XD Wrath to burn it hahahahaha XDD nice Brad very mature.

Yes Terrik does. Hahaha Team Terrik XD yay for compliment on pain—you know fighting, pain etc. all are rather hard for me to describe I have to think about it for a long time to find an interesting way to state such. So much stuck upness D: XD Canorith CLEARLY thought Edge could win Wink with his…magic cry of doom c:

Yay for being mad at Darryl XD he’s a meanie head anyway, be mad at him =D XD Yes Cipher is very mighty. He conquered a kid =) without a struggle |D And yes Edge can walk it off XDD clearly it Is a mere surface wound =) YAY for great thinking. It takes forever XP

Yes he has a month to be smart =) XD Canorith: UH D: *brings Edge back* O_O Darryl: *facepalm*
=) So glad you enjoyed, my good sir =) Makes it well worth posting.

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Thu Jan 20, 2011 3:00 am


Chapter Fifteen

Edge sat in the corner of the new office building they had begun moving to. Arrangements had been made to do so mere days after their conversation with Darryl. Frowning, he held out his hand—it was nearly double its size wrapped in all the bandages. It still hurt but not nearly as bad as it had. Surprisingly he hadn’t suffered any other major injuries—nothing that wouldn’t return to normal by time alone. Terrik and Canorith had spent nearly two hours straightening out his hand’s shapeshifting plates though.

The two had, ever since, been deep in conversation—neither bothering to explain any of the jumbled nonsense to him. They didn’t have enough money for this place from what he had heard, yet here they were in it, and the humans were still complaining about it. That intrigued Edge most. Shouldn’t they be happy? However, Canorith had been persistently protesting that involving a third party would only complicate things. Was that all humans ever did? Complain? He was beginning to think it might be.

Ever since they had met with Darryl a few days ago, life had been nonstop busy. Edge had found himself swept away in the rush, following anyone who he had recognized. He hadn’t seen Akura the past few days, although he had barely been home at a decent hour anyway. Other humans he had never met before, wearing outfits similar to the one Terrik wore, had been helping with the unpacking. They never spoke much, but seemed like decent creatures.

Edge sighed as he walked down a long, empty hallway over to the massive window that nearly took up the entire end wall. Outside he could see the usual sights—small businesses opening, the noisy apartment down the road, bustling with a large garage sale to the side of its entrance, puffy tree tops and people walking down the wide cement walk ways.

“Edge?”

Edge turned around, surprised to see Shadow standing there, he hadn’t seen him or Vorth since before the meeting and wasn’t all that sure he wanted to yet.

“H-hi.” His gaze made its way in a swivel to the floor as he placed his uninjured hand over the bandage of the other.

“I hear you did not fare well in the confrontation of earlier.”

“There was too many of them, honest.” Edge looked up, the depths of his red eyes full of flashback horror, “I…I didn’t have a chance…” Breaking eye contact, he looked to the side, helmet fins sinking in correspondence to a subtle sigh, “I should’ve done better.”

Shadow stood silent, gaze unwavering and hands resting palm against palm as usual.

Edge’s frown amplified as he was left without a response, both dejected and disappointed. How could the humans rely on him to protect them if he couldn’t even protect himself? They couldn’t. He was useless. He owed it to them to be more than that!

“I need to learn how to fight.” Edge raised his head in a slow and thoughtful change, until at last his gaze leveled into contact with Shadow.

Shadow nodded his head once, even that subtle gesture showing just how much control and precision he had over all that he did, while all the same, keeping his calm and collected composure. Edge had never met such a quiet and simply abnormal zetraloid like him before. Shadow was always alert, always ready to protect when called—and more importantly, he could fight.

“But first,” Shadow spoke at last, “You must learn to fall.”

That was a strange concept, but before Edge had a chance to ask what Shadow had meant, the zetraloid had swung around in a complete circle, knocking him off his feet. It had a striking resemblance to one of the many ways he had been thrown about by the Nightstrike zetraloids previously. He landed hard on his elbows and lower back and barely managed to keep the momentum of the fall from pushing him over in a complete roll.

“Ow!” Frowning and notably confused, he gazed up to the blue and black armored zetraloid who had once more presumed his calm and composed stance. “What was that for?”

Shadow only shook his head.

“You didn’t have to do that, I got hurt enough already.” Edge pushed himself back up and gave his arm a quick glance.

The bandage appeared just as secure as before and considering he hadn’t hit it with any blunt force upon impact with the floor, he figured it was safe to assume it to be fine. Still he inspected it to be certain and once its safety was confirmed, turned his attention back to Shadow. The zetraloid still hadn’t answered his question.

More of a surprise than the lack of reply, Shadow had decided to do the same leg sweep which had much the same result as before on Edge’s end. Now more confused than he had begun, Edge looked up to Shadow once more, searching for some kind of clue as to why he kept doing this.

The zetraloid was shaking his head yet again. “You cannot learn to fight until you learn to fall.”

Edge studied him, still searching for a hint of some sort, but found nothing, “But…I did fall. Twice.” He took a moment to reposition himself to sit on the floor comfortably, “I’m listening, really.”

“No.” Shadow answered before taking a step back to demonstrate.

Somewhat mimicking a falling motion, Shadow, unlike Edge, used the momentum to roll smoothly and then unfurl back onto his feet, with a simple transition that lead to standing, “You must roll with the force. Do not fight it.” He rested his hands against each other as he had done before.

Edge tilted his head to the side as the corner of his mouth pulled up into a sideways slant. He squinted his eyes slightly, as if trying to figure out the meaning of what Shadow was saying. The zetraloid only stared at him, giving no aid to his cause. “Why..?”

Shadow’s helmet fins twitched once, his expression now clearly one of annoyance—even if slightly hidden behind his face covering helmet. “Trust me, you will find yourself spending a lot of time on the ground. Better to do so without injury.”

Shadow was watching him closely, Edge noticed as he stood once again, wincing somewhat. Falling in such a manner had likely aggravated his shoulder. He spent a few moments stretching and rolling his arm in its socket until he seemed content. Instantly he found himself on his back yet again. Blinking, he suppressed the urge to cry in frustration. Why did Shadow keep knocking him down like this?

“Defense is just as important as offense, likewise is lessening impact.” Shadow watched the clearly confused younger zetraloid. “Try it.”

“But I—” Edge got no further, Shadow didn’t seem to care if he was standing or down now, he kicked him anyway.

Edge tried backing away although it only worked for a few moments. His back brushed against the wall of the huge window. With nowhere to go, all he could do was wait and watch.

Shadow stared down at the quivering little zetraloid. He was quite certain the pathetic little creature didn’t understand any of what he was being told. Sighing Shadow kneeled down in no hurried fashion. Edge scrunched himself against the wall even further, although it had no impact on Shadow’s intentions or the accomplishment of them. The larger zetraloid dragged him away from the wall by his legs in such a way that when pushed, Edge ended up rolling over despite how awkward and uncoordinated it had been.

“Like that.” Shadow stood once more and gazed down thoughtfully at the black armored zetraloid who had not bothered to move from his position that was now more or less upside down and leaning against the wall. “But with a lot more practice.”

Edge blinked his deep red eyes as one of his legs lost its place on the wall and sent him flopping forward in an inept mound of oddly placed limbs.

A good portion of the faith Shadow had in the ability of the young zetraloid to catch on to what he was trying to teach him faded. Eventually, he told himself, yes eventually he would learn. Proceeding any further would do no good as of current, so he didn’t bother.

By now Edge had rearranged his limbs back to their proper placements and had returned to standing. He was certainly taller than an average zetraloid for his age; perhaps that was partially to blame for his constantly flailing limbs. Shadow shook his head, attuning his mind to the more important matters of current times.

“Cipher has it set in his mind,” Shadow paused as he gazed out of the very window Edge had and scanned over the cars and various happenings of the outside world, “That you are a prime target.”

“But…why?” Edge tugged at the wrap around his arm. Life was so complicated in this city. Everyone had gotten along fine back where he had been before.

Shadow didn’t answer immediately, leaving Edge to linger in the silence that had befallen. His helmet fins twitched as he picked up the angry muttering of Terrik down the hall somewhere on the floor below. It sounded as if he had dropped something. Vorth emerged at the top of the stairway, carrying several plastic tubs filled with supplies from the previous office, he paused, calling to Terrik—most likely seeing if the human was okay. After a moment, he proceeded, followed close by Canorith who was carrying far less, although he appeared to be struggling with it.

“I do not know.”

Edge switched his concentration back to Shadow who had finally decided to reply. If nothing else, he was learning that just because the zetraloid didn’t answer right away, didn’t entirely dismiss the happening of it at a later time.

“It is a strange world that we live in, Edge.” Shadow glanced at him only briefly as he rounded in a swift motion to return to helping with the moving of equipment and supplies. “Watch your back.”

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Thu Jan 20, 2011 4:30 am

Chaaaapter 15. =) I never know how to begin this comments ya know? Well if you didn't you do now. Do I talk about the number for a while? Be random like this or...gasp...nothing? I never know so I just type what I am thinking at first. =) ANYWAY on to chapter. =).....15.

Poor Edge with his huge hand. =. On the bright side he can block the sun from his eyes better...and slap people with more force. =) Yes Edge all they do is complain about their well being and stuff. =U Don't worry about it. Busy busy eh? Edge does not like to be busy? Decent creatures. xDD Nice description of the city scenery. Very Happy

Shadow...what do YOU want? >=. Oh wait you're not a total jerk yet...MAH BAD. Edge spills his guts to a false friend. D= How sad. Will Shadow show sympathy? You already know lemme go read and see. >_> Edge wishes to LEARN brother. D= Shadow can take care of this...uyeeeees HMMMMMmmmm. Fall fail. xD Wow Edge I see what Shadow means EASILY. Mr. Wisdom I see. =U Edge you do need to know this though I agree with him. =U

WOW Shadow nice tutorial. xDD Edge stop being a dumby. >=. I see in your mind you ponder things enough to be able to understand this concept. A prime target. =. Stupid Cipher...needs to beat up little kids to make himself feel good. At least Shadow is helping until Edge gains more skill than him and makes him really mad. =) Hmmm you make Shadow sound so cool. =O I like it. xD He's all mysterious and badBUTT. Nice job with this chapter indeed. Very Happy Edge is fun to read about...or should I say WITH Ms. Convincing writer. Thank you for postng even with epic slow dial down. D=

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Thu Jan 20, 2011 5:48 am

I usually say whatever comes to mind XP I read that as slap people with the force. C:

Not a total jerk yet XPPP Edge is dumb =U He's like =c fight? that not fight, I sowwy D: XD

Shadow tried teaching him.......but he was too dumb. Edge that is, not Shadow. badbutt hahahahaha that makes me laugh.

Thaaaank you c: glad you liked it or so it seems even though it was small and boring the next one is even smaller 0.0

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Jan 23, 2011 1:23 am

Chapter Sixteen


“Edge! Edge! I need you Edge!”

Edge crossed the yard in long, easy strides. It wasn’t all that large, disappointingly so actually, compared to the field he was accustomed to playing in. That didn’t matter at the moment, and he was actually thankful that it was in fact smaller; it meant he could get to the one calling him quicker. He heard the voice again as he rounded the side of the house, crashing through a decorative bush that otherwise would have blocked the path.

Akura, he decided. Hopefully she was okay. What if it was the Nightstrike zetraloids? He’d never seen them come to Canorith’s house before but if they had…would he be able to do anything? He’d try, that was for sure. He came to an abrupt halt when he saw Akura standing in the doorway with a smile on her face. She didn’t look hurt or in any danger. Sighing, he rolled his eyes.

“Oh, don’t look so glum.” She giggled, “I needed someone else to help!”

“Help with what?” The dark armored zetraloid asked, shaking off a few leaves that had clung to his helmet as he followed her to her custom painted, wood table.

The girl had a taste in design and color that Edge had yet to see another human agree with. She had painted the table primarily green—a foresty green that reminded him of some of the Federation uniforms he had seen. Light pink hearts were splotched on top of that along with some rough sketches of how she thought zetraloids looked. It didn’t seem all that trendy as far as Edge was concerned, but if she liked it, he supposed that it really didn’t matter.

His question to Akura had gone unanswered as she brushed off a few green needles from the tree in their yard. Chances were whatever she needed help with had not been all that urgent, certainly it could’ve waited until after he had finished practicing how to roll in the backyard.

A second zetraloid came bouncing along from down the road, just as happy and carefree as one could get; his teal armor with its gold trim was a bright contrast to Edge’s. He paused at the front of their cement walkway and read the house number out loud before nodding and continuing along, straying off the path until he was beside them, “Hey, what’s up?”

“Torrent!” Akura greeted with a cheery smile.

Torrent—a Zegenbor Warrior as Edge learned—had come back to Canorith’s house one day. Ever since then, he and Edge had hung out a lot. Akura knew him, as did Canorith, thanks to his frequent and unannounced visits. Terrik had mentioned something about it being a healthy outreach amidst new circumstances. Edge didn’t have a clue what that meant, although he noted that whenever he spoke of ‘healthy outreaches’ the man was usually referring to him living here now.

“We were just about to play tea party invasion.”

A lot of the other human kids thought Akura was weird from what Edge had heard and he understood why. Tea party invasion didn’t sound normal.

“Ooh! I wanna play! I wanna play!” Torrent was already jumping about again, the zetraloid rarely stood in one spot for more than a few minutes at any given time.

Akura looked delighted as she ran off, soon returning with a pink, knitted hat and a feather boa. “Grandma gave me this weird stuff.” She gave it a skeptical glance, as if there clearly were no other purpose for it, “It should work great!”

Surveying her choices, she plopped the hat down on Edge’s head. The zetraloid had already grown so much that her arms were barely long enough to reach the height. The hat was in no way designed for a zetraloid head and it made the black tips of his helmet fins poke through the intertwined fabric.

“You can be the girl we have to rescue.”

“What?” Edge frowned as he poked at the hat. “Why me?”

“You get thiiiis.” Akura encouraged, waving one of the tasty rectangles he had learned to love in front of his face.

This one had a pink glaze on it with red sugar sprinkles. Cherry perhaps.

“Deal.” Edge grabbed the treat and the feather boa alike. He held the pink glazed rectangle in his mouth delicately as he positioned the boa.

The feathery fashion piece felt odd against his neck, despite its thick appearance, it had plenty of sensors along the surface to feel such things and the boa almost tickled. He hurried to take his place beneath the shade of the neighbor’s tree that draped into their yard. Its long, weeping branches brushed against his helmet as he made himself comfortable. Playing the part of helpless victim was easy.

Akura was explaining Torrent’s part to him before she put her fake army hat on. She never parted with that when they played together—just the things she didn’t like. Soon enough, the battle raged. Teacups went flying, all of which Torrent avoided with relative ease. That was one of the disadvantages humans had in playing with zetraloids—the zetraloids tended to be more skilled in evasion.

Torrent was the bad guy—Akura usually made herself the good one as it seemed she had done now. Fortunately for her, Torrent didn’t care what part he played, and he did often play this game with them. And Edge himself? Well, he didn’t mind being bribed with sweet treats into the less fun parts.

Torrent laughed as he rolled out of another incoming teacup’s path. Once all the teacup ammunition ran out, Akura and Torrent collected them up for a second round. Edge scratched at the feather boa and took another bite of the cherry filled rectangle. That wasn’t the proper way to fight. He supposed they wouldn’t care to know though. He may not have known everything involved in such matters—and in fact, what he did know was very little—but he was quite certain that this wasn’t how it was done.

“Gotcha, Mr. Evil!” Akura declared in a shout of gleeful triumph.

After a teacup bounced off his head, Torrent rather dramatically crashed to the ground and rolled over a time or two. At last he stopped; face buried in the grass with one arm beneath him and the other limply at his side.

Edge rose to his feet, brushing the soft, green tendrils aside as Akura ran towards him. Without warning, she sprang into the air, launching herself forward. For being no more than a human girl she could certainly throw herself with a lot of force. She had managed to knock them both down again.

“I saved you!” She shouted before hugging him and standing up.

Edge gave her a gentle smile and shook his head, before getting himself up as well.

Akura was a nice human. Canorith never wanted to play, but she did. He had spent many an afternoon playing with his new human sister. She had her less fun games at times; in particular the ‘school’ game. She pretended to be the teacher and would teach him all the things she had learned in school. Most of the time, he found that game to be fairly boring. However, it was better than the time she had decided to cover him in stickers and glitter, he admitted. No, that hadn’t been much fun at all. She had used a glue stick—since the glitter wouldn’t stay of its own accord—leaving his armor with a sticky film for days.

Shaking his head, he brought himself back to the present and glancing past Akura who was blissfully dancing about and singing a tune, noticed Torrent was still playing dead.

Edge’s mouth curved to a slight grin as he approached the teal zetraloid, “You can get up now you know.”

The zetraloid was up in a flurry of flailing limbs, although admittedly, it was a rather speedy maneuver, “Your grass tickles my nose.” He announced before swiveling around to face Edge, “And you could make for a convincing girl.”

Edge’s red eyes narrowed into a mild glare before his expression lightened. He launched himself at Torrent, tackling him to the ground. The two got back up and scuffled a bit—nothing in anger of course. It was just for fun. Humans were too sensitive to play in such a manner, their thin skins too easily damaged. Zetraloids could do so with no negative results—unless one played too rough of course.

The two crashed to the ground again.

“You didn’t let me finish!” Torrent insisted as he shoved Edge’s face to the side, causing the dark armored zetraloid to shake his head.

“Oh yeah?” He asked as leaned back to avoid getting pushed again, “So what’s the rest?”

Torrent grinned as inched back and then sprang to his feet, “You’d make for a convincing girl—if you were prettier.”

Edge’s expression was a rather peculiar mixture of amusement and faked anger, “Thanks, I try my best.”

The approach of a car distracted Edge as the sound of its motor shut off. Canorith was home.

The amusement drained from Edge’s face as he noticed the downcast mood the man possessed. He carried a briefcase—the one he often kept his notes and written ideas in—with one hand. More importantly, he noticed that the hand wrapped around its rubbery handle must have been bleeding earlier. Although small cuts were not uncommon for his line of work, this looked different. Akura and Torrent seemed to have noticed as well to a lesser degree.

“Hey Torrent, I—”

“It’s fine.” Torrent replied before Edge could finish, he nodded towards Canorith, “Go check it out. I’ll come by tomorrow.”

“Thanks.” Edge sighed.

“No prob.” He gave a quick wave, “See ya!”

Edge nodded as Torrent ran off back down the street. Akura was cleaning up her play zone, leaving him with a fine opportunity. He followed after Canorith who had strode by without a word of greeting into the house. The man was already on the phone to Edge’s disappointment, cradling it on his shoulder as he washed off his hand in the sink.

“Yeah…yeah I got that. Nah, it’s not bad...Backing out now would be stupid….Yeah they’re fine….Yes I’m sure.”

Edge tried piecing the conversation together but was having trouble. He heard the phone click then Canorith sighed and leaned on the counter, eyes trained forward in deep thought. The man stroked his chin a few times.

Slowly Edge approached, looking up for some kind of hint. He had reason to believe it might have had some connection to that Darryl Vogon man, but had no proof thus far. Nothing other than the fact that he now knew Canorith worked with him often, and that he was rarely happy upon return from their meetings.

“Edge…” The man sighed as he glanced down at the black armored zetraloid.

Edge looked on all the more attentively, searching for anything…any hint, if he could be of any help he was there and ready to be.

“Lighten up a bit. Not everything is bad.”

“Yeah, but— ”

Canorith raised his hand for silence. “One day, Edge. One day we won’t have to deal with any of this.”

Edge frowned as Canorith patted his head twice and then walked down the hall to his plan room. He entered with a weary, dragging pace, and shut the door behind himself. Helmet fins sinking in dismay, Edge ran out the back door and climbed the bordering fence.

From here he could see nothing but another set of houses and identical yards. From one, a small dog yapped and pawed at its fence and from another, a cat stretched lazily over its bordering wall. Letting his surroundings fade for just a moment, he tried to focus on what he believed the problem to be—Darryl’s team of Nightstrike zetraloids under the command of Cipher. He needed to investigate. After all, he owed it to the humans to be useful somehow. With new determination, he leapt off the fence into another yard before heading down the street. There had to be some way he could help his new human family.


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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Jan 24, 2011 3:29 am

CHAPTER 16 YAY. *it's totally chapter 17* Wait what?

Mega10: Um.....

BEGIN COMMENT. "Edge Edge! I need you Edge!" Canorith called desperately. >_> Okay well I think that would be amusing. Edge must save his girlfriend oh noes. D= Oh she is not in danger. =. Edge does not approve of her art. =O She probably needs your help for something artsy there Edge. =U

Torrent. Very Happy Reading the house number and then nodding is an EXCELLENT touch. xD Very authentic and I can easily see him doing that. =P Terrik said it was a healthy outreach. =. That is an interesting thing to think about. xD Tea party invasion. xDD Wow Torrent stands in one spot for a few minutes? =O I would not have guessed that.

Edge can be the girl!! xDD Poor guy. Ha ha. xD Pop Tarts sway Edges I see. Victim is easy. xD Not when you're actually being shot at. 0.0 Ahem. >_> Aw Akura wanted to hit him with teacups? xDD Dumb speedy Torrent. Imagining Edge with that stuff is quite amusing. xD Fighting pondering. Hmm well understood description of such things. Bravo. =.

Mr. Evil. xD How creative. Akura and Torrent sound like fun beings to be around. =. Edge does not mind hugs at his younger age I see. =O Ha ha ha. xD School. Don't worry Edge I find that boring as well. Glue stick and glitter? Boy you sure nailed the young aspect very well. =. Sounds like something someone Akura's age (has no idea how old she is) would do.

Torrent doesn't know when to stop playing dead. xD Quite the comment to Edge. =. Edge and Torrent fight amusingly. xD I like young Edge. =. It's rather depressing actually how he goes from fun and loving to....loving to some and no fun. Torrent suddenly matures. =O Cool. I wonder what happened to Canorith. =. Maybe he punched a push pin. What is this? Canorith is telling him to lighten up and is giving insightful hopes of the future? =O NOOOO EDGE DON'T. D= Aw come on it's not a good idea. X_X Well, I sense he will be harmed in the near future. xD Thank you for once again providing an extremely entertaining chapter for me to read and enjoy. =P You bring up a lot of interesting little details many would not even consider and do a top notch job with all the situations I have read about so far. xD Great job. =P

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Jan 24, 2011 3:43 am

Clearly this is chapter 17.

Canorith is a girly man now I see.

Glad you like the touches they really are just that, I go back and add them after writing the base thing down.

Akura specializes in creative names. XPP

Edge needed more sparkle according to akura I gguessed and yay for nailing young aspect XD
HAHA XD nice age guess there

Nice s ummary of later life Edge XDDD

Torrent CAN be mature >=U he just chooses not to c: most of the time.

Punching a push pin sounds...painful.

Canorith: I punch nails DAILY >=. while eating breakfast with skim milk

Yes Canorith does c:

XDD Edge thinks its a great idea =) Will it be? =o brad seems to have his thoughts on the matter c:


thaaank ya |D always a pleasure

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Feb 13, 2011 4:46 am

Chapter Seventeen

Edge headed off from his house with no map or way to go. Crossing the frigid land known as his home he reached a building that I didn't feel like describing. Stuff happened and he left. Then there was a chase scene but it was too long so we cut it out. Then some people fought and Edge went back home after standing in the rain and singing a charming little tune about the rain.


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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Feb 14, 2011 3:23 am

Chapter Seventeen


“Are you sure this is a good idea?” Torrent whispered as he carefully stepped over a puddle. “His partner doesn’t sound very nice.”

Edge had a suspicion that Canorith would not approve of him wandering around out here like this. He said Seaside was too big and dangerous for a Shapeshifter as young as himself to be roaming about. Edge didn’t agree though—how could he be helpful if he never left the house? Maybe he shouldn’t have brought Torrent along though, that was likely to get him in more trouble if the humans found out. If all went well, they’d be thanking him, not angry.

“That’s why we won’t get caught.” Edge answered after quite a delay.

It should be simple; the way Edge had planned it. All they’d need to do was observe from a distance—how dangerous could that be?

“What if we do?” Torrent’s question broke his thoughts.

Edge grimaced, pausing to flash Torrent a quick glance, “Run?”

Torrent made a subtle whine as the two kept moving down the darkened path. Seaside had a syrup thick haze that oozed in the lower depths of every twisting path at night. To Edge’s dismay, it was present as usual, clouding any landmark he may have recognized. A sweet tainted mildew flooded all sense of smell, held down beneath the grasp of the vaporized ocean water.

Edge’s scarf just barely dragged across the water blanketed path, becoming more and more like a weight the further they went. The asphalt was splayed open like fractured ice with sprigs of grass sprouting from its depths while bits of torn up newspaper collected to the sides around a few trash cans.

Edge’s gaze trailed skyward as a distant grumble of thunder rolled through the darkening gray mounds. Although not yet late, it had had grown deeply overcast. A few small drops speckled his black armor.

“Do you even know where we’re going?”

“Sort of.” Edge stopped at a chain link fence dividing him from where he needed to be, “Come on, I know another way.”

He didn’t. Not personally anyway, but he had heard of a way through this maze. On near silent feet, he followed a trickling water trail around the corner of yet another towering building, looping back to where he had been previously but on the opposite side. At last they were emerging from amongst the narrow paths. He kept up a steady pace as he pushed through a mound of what might have been old, rusty pieces of metal.

“This isn’t very encouraging.” Torrent commented right before he bumped into Edge.

Before them lay a stretch of building far too damaged for any human to have been living in. This must have been the warehouse then—the one he’d heard Shadow and Vorth talk about Cipher and his little band of zetraloid friends hanging out at. The building looked rather bland as far as Edge was concerned. A thick, wilted and yellowed grass surrounded it in thick clumps. In the dwindling light, he could see bars crossing windows where the glass had been broken out. The few that were still intact had a solid grime of dirt streaked by condensation.

From a distance, part of the roof was unmistakably patchy, almost like a fish, stripped of its scales here and there. A small stack of broken boards rested in a molding pile not too far from where he stood. Another rumble of thunder tumbled through the sky like a distant waking beast.

Edge took a deep breath as he approached the building, helmet fins pricked up as if to help alert his transmitters of even the slightest sound. He crouched low as he walked a good portion of its length, looking for a suitable entrance. It took him a couple of tries with the inadequate light to spot a hole behind a tight clump of weeds.

By the feel of its upper instability he guessed it must have rotted out. He glanced back to be certain Torrent was still following before kneeling down. If he were to fit he would have to drop down even lower. Warily he sank to his stomach, chin nearly brushing the ground. He was thankful the crawl was only a short distance as the damp ground against his belly was hardly enjoyable. With a quick surveying glance he realized they were behind the cover of some cardboard boxes.

Torrent had blundered in behind him—less than ideal for any sort of stealth mission. Maybe bringing him along hadn’t been such a good idea for more than one reason. It took the other zetraloid a good deal of thumping around before he had situated himself comfortably enough. He had stopped behind a stack of boxes just slightly further back than Edge’s own.

Edge held back from sneezing—these boxes must not have been moved in ages—as he looked forward. A small patch of light was making a thin pool of water a few feet in front of the boxes dazzle. Glancing up, he noticed a hole in the roof—that was where the light was coming from. Its faint blue haze had revealed dust particles floating through the air like glitter. Perhaps the clouds had cleared overhead—night was fast approaching regardless.

A distant laugh caught his attention; it was soon joined by a chorus of other voices. With slow steps, Edge made his way further into the center of this long, open room, towards the direction he had heard the noise emit from. He settled behind another group of boxes and crates. This set was only a few feet from a turn leading to another room. Pausing to listen, he could hear no indication of movement and deemed it safe. Torrent had remained where he was.

Once again Edge heard the voices speaking, now in regards to how easy some zetraloid had been to deal with. It quickly turned to a discussion of who was best amongst the group. This could take awhile, and in fact it did.

Edge shifted his position slightly, doubting the unruly group would be alerted by something so subtle. He was getting stiff and it had begun to make his joints ache. How long had he been like this? They had said nothing of any use yet. His hope returned, at least for a moment, when the laughter died down, but it was replaced only by the topic of where to eat.

Edge sighed, resting his chin in his hands as he propped himself over the view of a crate. He still couldn’t see any of the zetraloids, although he could see a few shadows flickering in the dim orange light cast on the wall of the nearby room. Their conversation on food hadn’t lasted long, although Edge didn’t realize it right away due to his settling boredom.

The slam of a door jerked him from his thoughts. He barely kept from leaping up and running, rather stiffening and cringing. After a few moments he opened his eyes again, realizing all was quiet. The laughter had faded. They had…left? Frustrated, Edge hopped out from behind his cover and raced into the room, not bothering to check if it was safe.

Nothing. They really had all left!

“Hey Edge.” Torrent appeared from around the corner; at least he had enough sense to stay quiet. “I was thinking—”

“I don’t know if now’s the best time.”

Edge wove through the chairs and avoided the chips carelessly flung on the floor. Part of the room lay in darkness—darkness too deep to see in. The dying lantern really didn’t help.

“But Edge, they’re Nightstrikes, doesn’t that mean they can see really well right now?”

The thought had never crossed Edge’s mind. Torrent was right. If they came back and happened to look around…hiding would not be so easily accomplished. An uneasy tingle settled in Edge’s stomach as he considered what happened last time he had met the zetraloids. They’d better make themselves scarce. Perhaps he could track down information another time—there were too many risks right now.

Edge headed back the opposite way.

“Hurry.” He ordered, the building seemed to have grown larger and larger, everything more open now that he realized the Nightstrikes would be seeing this like perfect day.

Edge had no trouble finding where he had come through and slipped back out, Torrent just behind him. Staying close to the building, he crouched down and watched. Beyond the chain link fence that divided him from a gravel path on the other side, he could see four zetraloids walking along and still conversing. Did they honestly have that much to talk about? They disappeared from sight as they traveled beyond the streetlight.

“Huh.”

Torrent tilted his head to the side, “Huh, what?”

“It’s just…” Edge shook his head, “There’s normally five.”

He had begun to walk towards the fence as he pondered who was missing. Torrent was right beside him, glancing around in his usual curious manner. Torrent paused once they had reached it, waiting as Edge slipped through the tight gap.

“Well, it’s been fun, Edge, but I’m gonna head home.”

Home was more like the park on the farthest region of Seaside from here. He didn’t blame his friend for wanting to begin his trek back; it’d likely take him all night.

“Alright, see ya.” Edge nodded.

“Sorry you didn’t find whatever you were lookin’ for.” Torrent added as he headed back the way they had come through, “You sure you’re gonna be able to find your way back?”

Edge rolled his eyes, although he could hardly blame his friend for wondering. He did tend to get lost a lot. “I’ll be fine.”

Torrent smiled and then disappeared into the settling darkness.

The sky looked to be clouding up again. Edge figured he would need to move quickly if he wanted to get home without getting lost. He’d have liked to have gone the way Torrent had, but that one wouldn’t lead to his home, rather to central Seaside.

Sighing he followed the gravel path into the glow of the streetlight. No information—what a wasted trip. Idly he tried deciding if he could remember which zetraloid was missing—it gave him something to do at least as he walked down these lonely paths. He didn’t know them by name, only their glowing patterns. Well, at least everyone aside from that one. He batted at a weed nearly as tall as himself that was lining the side of his path. Continuing along he tried recalling the colors he had seen glowing when they had walked by—orange, blue, yellow, and red.

Edge paused again as his eyes caught sight of some most peculiar patterns in the darkness—green squares stacking in boxy layers to their centers, and other bright green, trailing designs. They rose from ground level to something slightly over six feet. He took a hesitant step back as the designs moved towards him, a dark outline creating the shape of a zetraloid. He tilted his head back, watching as the pulsing green lines that were dimly lighting a charcoal black face brightened. At once, green eyes flickered into visibility.

“Cipher.” It came as more of a whisper than Edge had intended for it to.

“Ah, Edge, funny meeting you here.” Cipher smirked as he continued walking towards the smaller zetraloid, forcing them both into the view of the streetlight, “What brings you around?”

The pleasantries were superficial. Edge could tell. He fumbled for words. Why hadn’t he thought of an excuse earlier?

“You seem surprised.” The zetraloid was putting on quite the display of expressions and motions as he spoke, “You know us Nightstrikes don’t have to glow like this.” To demonstrate, he allowed himself to dim down as the typical smug grin he had settled on his face. He let his glow return as he stopped. “So then, you wouldn’t be here to spy on us, would you?” His tone had taken a turn for the worst, “Do you know what I do to spies?”

Edge shook his head in slow swings, still wide-eyed.

“Well then,” The dark featured zetraloid reached over his shoulder, pulling the pole Edge had seen him with before into sight, “I guess you’ll find out, won’t you?”

Edge knew there was no use reasoning with him. There was only one thing to do—only one chance really. He took off down the street in a complete run. He heard Cipher shout something before chasing after him—that didn’t surprise him, he had expected as much.

Turning off of the gravel road, he emerged back onto pavement, nearly falling as his foot slipped on a soggy newspaper. No sense of where he was at was coming to him. Had he even been down this way before? Nothing was visible in color any longer, rather dark outlines alerted him of turns and obstacles to avoid. Gazing up as he ran, he realized to either side of him huge buildings towered into the sky, leaving him with no other option than to run down these narrow ways.

With every additional turn the buildings were beginning to look more and more familiar. Was he running in circles? Where was he even going? Was he…lost? He made an abrupt turn to the left upon almost running straight into a wall he hadn’t seen in the increasing darkness. His core pounded as he struggled to press on with disregard to his protesting body—Cipher wasn’t too far behind and he had to run at double his speed just to stay ahead of the zetraloid.

Edge came to a screeching stop—had he been in less hazardous conditions, he’d probably have stopped to complain about the scraped feet he now had. A new obstacle stood in his path—a fence. A chain link fence to be exact, at least twenty feet in height and the top being lined with spiraling razors.

He glanced back. Cipher was still following close. Swallowing with difficulty—his throat was completely dry—he eyed up the razors. They were probably less harmful than Cipher would be, he decided. He began to scramble up the fence. The flimsy threshing curved in and swayed every time he set his foot down, making his trek to the top even more of a struggle. His hand caught one of the razors as he pulled himself over the top, but fear kept him moving.

Cipher left his sight for a few moments but soon reappeared from around a different corner. Cipher obviously knew his way through this labyrinth of alleyways better than he did. He hadn’t considered that when he’d first come here, not that there had been time. Looking back, there were so many things he hadn’t planned for. There was no time to spare in doing such now though. He had barely made it down before Cipher had caught up. He narrowly dodged a swing from the pole as he darted down the last stretch of road that led to the open.

Edge’s hope in being less confined was dashed nearly as quickly as it had sprouted. He was still nowhere near help as far as he could tell which had been his primary reason for the anticipation. The sidewalks hardly even had any humans now that it was beginning to rain. Edge’s pace was slowing, he wasn’t sure how far or long he had been running, but he was pretty certain it had been long enough—longer than he had run in a long time. Cipher was gaining and at last, Edge stumbled over his own foot. It was all Cipher needed to pounce on the opportunity.

The pole broad sided Edge and he found himself set down another direction. Cipher’s laughter echoed in his head as he tumbled forward. The pole had caught his foot in a second swipe and tripped him, but he found that his tumble had ended with him rolling back into a run. He’d have been impressed with himself if he weren’t running for his life.

“I’ll bash your stupid head in! After I break your stupid legs!”

Edge sincerely hoped the angry zetraloid wouldn’t catch him. He hadn’t a doubt in his mind that Cipher would do those very things if he could.

“You can’t run forever!”

That was true, but neither could he, right? The question was who would last longer. Any crushed hope Edge had left faded into oblivion as he turned down a more crowded street. It wasn’t crowded with people, but with tables and shop signs. The streets were no better, filled with the blinding headlights of cars—to enter there would be asking for an early death. He didn’t have time to change direction now, not with Cipher so close behind. That was when he spotted Terrik just exiting a small shop with a bag in one hand. Shadow was beside him.

Several raindrop sprinkled chairs stood in Edge’s way of reaching the man. This was a horrible spot for a restaurant as far as he was concerned. He ducked to avoid the pole as it swished over his head. The resounding clatter of it rattling against the back of a chair caused Terrik to glance up.
Edge had woven amongst the chairs before hopping atop one of the tables and sliding smoothly across it until he went off the other end. He landed in a heap before rolling several feet and slamming into Terrik’s legs, half upside down. Cipher was still following from what he could see. He shut his eyes and tried to shield his face as the zetraloid leaped towards them.

Shadow dashed in front to protect Terrik from the impact, but it still knocked the man down as the two zetraloids grappled. Had the chairs not been secured to the ground they surely would have been tossed about.

“What on—” Terrik adjusted his glasses and blinked at the black armored zetraloid floundering about like an upside down turtle at his feet, “Edge?”

“I’ll kill him! Get out’a my way!”Cipher shoved Shadow aside as he rebounded.

Shadow caught Cipher’s leg in a spinning kick before he could get far causing the rather tall Nightstrike zetraloid to crash to the ground. His face slammed into a chair in the process. With the battle in such close quarters, Terrik got up in a hurry to retreat from immediate danger, Edge following close behind.

Cipher had rounded to fight with Shadow again once he had pulled himself off the ground. He swung his pole around in a wide arc, barely missing Shadow. As he brought it back the opposite way in a spin, Shadow grabbed the back of a chair, resting his foot on the top, then launched himself out of the way.

Quickly tiring of missing his target, Cipher turned back to Terrik and Edge. It was no trouble for him to cover the distance and without a moment’s hesitance, he thrust the pole forward. The impact it would have made with Edge and Terrik alike was stopped only by Shadow who had leaped between the gap. A sharp crack accompanied Shadow stumbling to the side, one hand covering his face. Plasma seeped from between his fingers and speckled the pavement in deep blues as it soaked into the surface.

Terrik shoved his hand into his coat pocket, returning from the search with a small cell phone like device. The man spoke a series of numbers into its speaker as he retreated a second time. Edge didn’t have the chance to listen any further. Cipher was after him again. Scrambling forward, Edge flung himself below the cover of a table. Cipher’s pole slammed into its side, chipping a piece off.

“Call him!” Edge heard Terrik’s voice above the fading ring of the pole, he sounded much less formal than normal, “Unless you want them dead!”

Edge suspected he was speaking with Canorith, considering it was his number, although the rest he was uncertain of. A second realization hit him then. If he survived Cipher’s wrath, he was going to have to face Canorith’s next. That very thought made him wonder if hiding was even worth the effort. Cipher smashed the pole into the table’s central base, just inches from his head. Edge yelped as he flopped back out into the open. When he glanced up, Cipher was standing above him.

Shadow was up again, although not nearly as coordinated. He still managed to trip Cipher before he could strike Edge. A huge crack had nearly split the armor that would have been above Shadow’s nose in two. Edge was thankful for the distraction. He watched with wide eyes as the two slowly made their way further down the street. Shadow was primarily blocking strikes from being as effective. Perhaps he was leading Cipher away. Edge crawled beneath the table again and pulled himself closer to its base.

Shadow’s tactic only worked a short while before Cipher tired of it and whipped back around, “Edge! Where are you?”

It took Cipher a moment to spot the zetraloid. Rain pattered off his helmet as he took a step in Edge’s direction. In plain view from the lights lining the street, his normally wild and jagged hair had flattened to his head—the rain had increased significantly just since they had gotten here. Edge clung tight to the table as Cipher wedged the pole between one of the chairs, just barely missing his leg.

“Cipher!”

The zetraloid stopped in an instant as he turned to face the voice. Edge turned as well, surprised to see Darryl of all people, having pulled into one of the parking spots lining the street. Had that been who Terrik was talking about? And if so, how had he gotten here so quickly?

The hostile look Cipher had possessed melted away into an innocent smile as he looked to his boss and creator.

As Darryl slammed his door shut it was easy to tell the less than desirable mood he was in currently. He bundled his jacket tighter and grumbled a long line of inaudible complaints, stopping just a few feet before Cipher. “Leave that thing alone and get in the car.”

Cipher’s helmet fins lowered slightly, giving him much the appearance of a young child persisting upon candy or a new toy.

Now.

The reluctance was evident in all the forced motions Cipher had, releasing his grasp on the pole slightly.

He sighed, casting a glance to Edge out of the corner of his eye, “I’ll get you later. This is far from over.”

With a confident smirk he strode past Shadow, head once again raised conceitedly as he made his way to the car. The zetraloid’s boss eyed up the situation although he didn’t appear concerned.

“Lucky.” Darryl muttered as he gazed at Edge, proceeding on towards the others.

He approached Terrik, who was keeping his distance, and Shadow—now at his side—covering the fracture of his helmet. The man only nodded before heading back towards his car. Edge took the chance to slink over behind Shadow and Terrik, daring to peek out. Just one helmet fin and eye was in visibility.

“Oh and Terrik.” Darryl called as he opened his car door, “Tell Canorith we need to discuss this…new zetraloid of his.”

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Feb 14, 2011 4:34 am

Phew. 0.0 It almost takes mental preparation for a chapter this extensive. xD That is a good thing though, surely that is a good thing. Okay comment intro, you shall be cut short now. >=U I wish to read.

"Are you sure this is a good idea?" Why yes Torrent, I am. o.0 I love reading this so stop doubting my intentions! >=. His partnet doesn't sound nice because he ISN'T NICE. =O Edge needs to realze this Torrent, quick you pin him and I'll get a....person who helps people mentally that I forgot, okay?

Won't get caught. What a plan Edge, what a plan. Don't most people try not to get caught? Success may be on your side but I doubt it. =) So I shall find out I suppose. Recon IS dangerous Edge. D= 80% of the POWs are recon units with no backup. =( Yay running is a good backup. Very Happy Chaaaaase sceeeeeene. A subtle whine. xD How un Torrent like. I can picture it, just saying it amuses me. =. Nice haze description. =O Helped me picture it perfectly. Also wow, the description of the area and the weather and stuff...amazing. =O I could almost hear that rumble and then the speckles of rain on Mr. Edge. xD

SHHHH Torrent. =U No talking, are you even focusing on being quiet and your surroundings? Huh? Hmmm lovely windows there. =U When does Cipher get 'dismissed'? How often does he get to hang out there? Wow this is very atmosphereic. xD Like...obviously I'm not there but I get the feeling I should be getting AWAY from this place. Should nooot have brought Torrent. >_< I can see by how careful he is being that Torrent will not be quite as much so.

DANG. 0.0 Now the puddle of water and the boxes with the dust and hole in the roof with the glitter dust...excellently described. xD Wow. Oh gosh. Not an open large room. D= Those are terrible for recon. Yes Torrent, you STAY. Goood. =) Hmmm only useless info to not be recording with a tape recorder you didn't bring huh Edge? Can you record it with your face? Or like...anything...somehow...you are a zetra. =U I dunno how you plan on doing this. EDGE. Wow how disappointing. 0.0 How could you let down your guard so easily? You go from super sneaky to rushing into rooms. Impatient much? Time to be scarce. =O Wow the way you brought up nightsrikes and how Edge is in that room...it even made me fear for him. Like seriously instead of like poor Edge or RUN EDGE I was like: 0.0 Oh wow Edge what are you gonna do? Very nice, I like that.

Normally five? xDD More fear...and I am dead serious you've got me so involved here. It's like a scene from a horror thingy. The kids go their separate ways. =. AKA Edge is now doomed. =. Well there is who he forgot. .-. Oh gosh Cipher, leave him alone. >=. Poor Edge, likely epic scared. I am seriously at a loss for words here. xD I understand Cipher's personality and how this is all normal for him, but I can't help but want to get mad at him for it, but getting mad at him for it makes me seem like a baby. D= Nice job. >=.

YAY finally Edge is running. =D This does not happen often. xD From what I've read anyway. Go on Cipher, catch him. >=D It would probably please me to see Cipher frustrated. =. Dang, fence description is great as well...as well as authentic. =. Nice. =) Oh no...Cipher caught him...and now not only is Edge exhausted but Cipher is more mad. .-. Running didn't turn out quite how it was supposed to. D= Edge would have impressed himself. xD Nice one Edge. Cipher resorts to threats now. =U Keep going Edge! You can do it. =O Wow what luck for Edge to find that. xD I am seriously so excited here and seeing Shadow grapple with Cipher? Epic, with that buildup? Truly epic.

Alright Shadow, you are being epic and all but...next time block with something other than your face? Okay I kid. xD Nice job dude. =. Poor Shadow. D= Not in good shape nope. =. HA HA Cipher. >=D Mr. Master appears to end your reign of terror. GOOD. Wow what a way to end. xD Cipher still annoys me with how arrogant he is....and how Darryl does nothing about it. =. At least Edgey was saved. =( Good thing Shadow isn't like Veng, or he'll never get fixed. =D That was a seriously great chapter. It had so much action and stuff....and chase scenes. xD I enjoyed every second and I can easily say all the work you put into it was not wasted. Brilliance! Thank you so much for creating and posting it. =P

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Feb 14, 2011 5:19 am

You sound like you’re reassuring yourself before entering the comment. XDD Torrent questions all readers who dare touch the chapter. XDD You are going to help Edge realize his error in thinking his partner is nice? =) XDD

Edge needs to get better plans yes. It’s okay mr statistics. XD BRAD XDD chase scene you are so random XD Torrent whines about Edge’s great plan c: Glad you liked the descript. Took me awhile to get it right. Mr. Edge XDDD

Edge: *explains all these things about Cipher to brad*

0.o how does he know any of that? D: XD HAHAAHA XDD Brad feels he should leave. Yes Edge should to. But his leave sensors died. Yes….Torrent is less than stealthy. He’s like durdee dur dur =. Rock =D *toss* XD
I’m glad you like it X3 I thought I was going overboard with the description XP Uh oh mr statistics is back again =U him and his recon. Brad is pleased that Torrent is staying though. Edge did not bring any recorder lolol other than himself, dumb edge. Record it with his face XDDDD
Edge: *is recording us with his face*
0.o ……
Yes Edge was indeed a dumby rushing into that room. He’d have been very surprised if they were just being randomly silent. H yay =D Oh* I’m glad I have evoked such EOTIONS …EMOTIONS in BRAD. C:
Yes…normally fiiive .0. I even had to go bak and count for I am a bad rememberer |D YAY fear C: I am glad I have involved you. Pacing. Its all about pacing |D Yes =) aka Edge is now doomed c: Yeees there’s who he forgot indeed XDD mr solo Cipher wandering around.
HAHA baby brad c: getting mad at Cipher c: Cipher is rather bad >_> …and does scare the little Edge c: I’d be scared of him if I met him at night 0_o Brad wants Cipher to catch him? 0.o Yes it would make brad happy I think if he were frustrated. Cipher I mean. Yay for fence! I added that my last time through c:

Yes Cipher did =U XD Little Edge can only run so far. There went plan B eh? XD Plan C =D XD Brad sees hope =D Yes XDD he should block with something other than his face =) Master did indeed appear to end his reign of terror =U XDD

Cipher’s like Darryl’s spoiled child >_> cept older. Because he built him and he’s his favorite XPP And Cipher is well aware of it. HAHA yes about Shadow not being like Veng.

Glad it all paid off yes |D this is my reward right here…epic brad comments yes |D

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Sun Mar 13, 2011 11:06 pm

Chapter Eighteen


“I hope you’re happy.” Canorith glared at Edge for a moment as soon as he’d checked to make sure Shadow’s repair was okay.

The zetraloid had a thick metal wire that wrapped around his entire head. It was supposed to allow the weld to heal better. Cipher had definitely caused decent damage when he’d struck Shadow’s facial armor the night before. Canorith and Terrik alike had hardly gotten any sleep due to working on those very repairs until early morning.

“I didn’t mean to…” Edge sighed dejectedly.

It wasn’t easy to explain, especially when no one wanted to listen. Between the lack of sleep and injuries caused, everyone was in a rather irritable mood towards him. They were currently in Canorith’s house awaiting the arrival of Darryl Vogon. Arrangements had been made for a meeting, although Darryl hadn’t disclosed what the subject would be. Edge presumed it was about last night’s confrontation.

Canorith was pacing. “Maybe I shouldn’t have helped you.”

“I told you he’d be trouble.” Terrik reminded as he checked his watch.

Edge’s head tilted downward as his helmet fins drooped in slow correspondence. The two left him with a shake of their heads, off to discuss what they thought Darryl might require. Head still down, Edge tried looking up with his eyes alone, but immediately dropped his gaze again when he noticed Shadow was still nearby. He couldn’t bring himself to make eye contact after yesterday. He knew the zetraloid was angry at him, and he felt bad enough knowing he was the cause of Shadow’s split open face.

A knock on the door made him jump. Darryl was here already? He hadn’t brought his car by the sound of it. Glancing out the window set to the left of the door he could see some of the Nightstrike crew. Amongst them stood an unfamiliar zetraloid—his armor a dark blue scheme along with jagged helmet fins that were lined by neon green.

Edge guessed that Darryl must have had a lot of Nightstrike zetraloids. Maybe he’d replaced Cipher with this younger and smaller Nightstrike. Maybe the man wasn’t angry after all. Maybe he’d just seen how horrible Cipher truly was last night and replaced him.

Dismay stabbed at his stomach when Canorith opened the door. Cipher was right beside Darryl. When the green and black Nightstrike caught sight of him, a glare crept upon his charcoal face and the lime glow of energy pulsing through his spiraling square markings quickened.

“I’m terribly sorry about last night.” Canorith apologized.

“As am I.” Darryl’s monotonous response reminded Edge of the businessmen on TV. “Why don’t you grab your new little friend and we’ll talk outside.”

There went the remnants of any lingering hope Edge could have had. This conversation was certainly about him. The ever familiar pull of dread that was becoming a frequent part of his life sent his core into a frenzied beat. He didn’t move until Canorith motioned for him to follow and even then it was with great reluctance.

It was sunny and clear outside—rare for Seaside from what he’d heard, but hardly a good omen for the quality of his own day. He stood close beside Canorith; gaze still trained down like a conquered spirit. Terrik stood further back and Edge noticed Shadow was in the doorway while the Nightstrike zetraloids gathered around Darryl.

“You know I don’t mind you doing as you like with your zetraloids.” Darryl clasped his hands behind his back, “However, when mine become involved, then we have an issue.” He gave the others a chance to answer, but no protest was made, “He is potentially a danger to our partnership I’m afraid.” His expression became even more solemn as he directed his attention to Canorith alone, “Get this problem under control, or I’ll solve it for us.”

“Of course.” Canorith glanced away from Darryl and to Edge instead, “It won’t happen again.”

Darryl nodded once, “You do understand the seriousness of this, correct, Canorith?”

“Fully.” Canorith answered, unease detectible in all his mannerisms.

Darryl gazed on in silence for a moment before walking to Edge and standing directly before him. “I would choose my steps carefully, little zetraloid, or you may find them set down a path of misery and destruction.”

He waited a moment longer for some sort of response, but didn’t receive as much as a glance from Edge. Adjusting the pen clipped to his pocket he walked a few paces and motioned to his team of zetraloids, “I have…other business to attend to, my dear associates, if you’ll excuse us.”

Canorith and Terrik remained where they were, giving only a subtle nod as the man carried on down the street. Once he was out of sight, Canorith sighed.

“It could have gone worse.” Terrik pointed out.

“Definitely. But still…”

His gaze traveled to Edge. The young zetraloid was kicking at a tuft of grass that had grown through the walkway. He certainly seemed harmless now, but the potential threat still lingered. It was a risk to both Canorith’s business and the little Shapeshifter himself who was so clueless of all the trouble he was causing.

“…he needs a tracking chip.”

Terrik adjusted his glasses before gazing at Canorith harder, “And that will help us…how?”

“We’ll be able to track where he is.”

“Right…while he still runs rampant. Canorith, I highly doubt that will solve anything.” Far quieter he added, “You just need to get rid of him.”

The two debated back and forth for quite some time before Canorith called it to an abrupt halt.

“Just do it, Terrik.”

Terrik sighed and shook his head, removing his glasses and setting them in his coat pocket. He wasn’t convinced that this would work, but there was no place for further discussion. Canorith was his boss after all. He gave a subtle nod before motioning to Edge. The black armored zetraloid cast a quick glance to Canorith before scurrying after Terrik. To his surprise, they were leaving.

Edge’s helmet fins perked up in curiosity of what it was they were setting out to do. Terrik didn’t help solve the mystery, rather walking down a set of streets in complete silence. Edge kept close beside him. The sights weren’t all that impressive—sidewalks, a few small shops and food marts along with a streetlight here or there.

At last they arrived in an empty parking lot. Edge watched as Terrik pulled out a small key from his pocket. Although it looked like an average key, it actually was integrated with its own electronic system. It was supposed to have improved security features.

Terrik flipped on a switch and looked around as he stepped inside. Edge followed but not without great hesitance. It seemed unnaturally cold and even had an odd scent to it. Nothing like the coffee stench he was accustomed to, but something more…metal and disinfectant like. Perhaps a sort of cleaning solution.

“It’s our storefront.”

Edge opened his mouth to ask a question but Terrik beat him to its answer, “…of The New Edge—that’s the business name, if you recall. The one you’re named after.”

“Oh.” That explained it; he’d only been in the rooms accessible from around the back. Specifically, the rooms they had stored items from their previous location in.

“Wait here, I’ll be right back.”

Edge watched Terrik go through a door behind the counter. Meanwhile, he set about investigating this storefront, whatever that was. Large books rested on the front counters. Curious, Edge opened one. His helmet fins perked up just slightly. Inside was a list of different zetraloid models—some he’d never even heard of before. He began thumbing through the pages casually. Each page had a picture to the right and a description to the left—things like strong points and weaknesses. It told more about their histories as well as other information. He glanced up to check for Terrik again but the man had not returned.

Pushing away the book, he walked around the counter to see what was on the other side. Nothing of interest resulted from the investigation, only a phone and some other desk supplies. This was where Canorith went every day? It seemed awful boring.

A door shut from behind, causing him to jump. He spun around in a quick flip, ready to face his attacker, but found only Terrik. Instantly he dropped the stance and smiled. Terrik hadn’t seemed to have noticed anyway as he set about clipping a few wire tips on a small microchip he held.

“This shouldn’t take long at all.”

Edge wondered what he meant briefly, but didn’t refuse to let Terrik take his arm. It felt strange, Edge decided, as Terrik set about altering the way his shapeshifting plates laid. He could feel them sliding back over the tops of each other, and then slight sensitivity as a sharp tip rested against the now exposed actuators.

Terrik was holding something that looked similar to a nail gun with the pointed microchip at its tip. He repositioned it, wedging it between the surface actuators so that it wouldn’t penetrate them then pulled the trigger. A rather loud snap sounded as the device launched the chip further into Edge’s arm.

Edge stumbled back, blinking in slight shock at the sensation. His arm felt like a hundred needles were stabbing at him relentlessly, followed by a sharp spike of pain that shot up his arm like a flailing, electric tentacle. He held his arm up to examine, but found nothing abnormal. The armor plates had returned to their default position and now all he felt was mild irritation.

“It will be back to normal in no time. Don’t worry.”

Don’t worry? Was that supposed to solve his problem? Did Canorith know Terrik had plotted to do that? When the man took a step towards him, he retreated, although that hadn’t seemed to have concerned Terrik as he set about putting the tool away with a shrug. Wordlessly Edge wondered what had possessed the man to do such a thing. He didn’t normally seem aggressive.

Everything was complicated. He had thought it would get easier as time went on, not harder. While Terrik was still preoccupied, Edge snuck out the front door. He needed advice, or some kind of help, and there was one zetraloid he could think of for such a job.

It was a clear run across the huge bridge leading to central Seaside, and then a good half hour run from there. Crowded streets were something he was beginning to get accustomed too. In Seaside one had to share their narrow pathway with humans and other zetraloids—all of which liked walking at a dreary, sluggish pace. It made travel time significantly slower. One day he’d have to find a better route of travel.

The streets of Seaside were already well populated, although he had scarcely seen a time when they weren’t—not that he came to central Seaside often. At last the building he was looking for came into view. This was the ATC as Punisher had called it when they had first met—The Advanced Technology Center. He pushed his way through a crowd to squeeze inside. Humans. They always occupied this place.

“Can I help you?” Edge spun around.

A zetraloid was staring at him, wearing a uniform with a small name tag.

“Yeah, um, I’m looking for Punisher.”

The zetraloid’s stance straightened as he pulled his head back in a swift jerk and tilted it to the side.

When he received no further explanation, he relaxed his posture and nodded, “One moment.”

Edge watched him depart into a crowd of humans, setting off for a path that led to one of the many doors behind the counters. He waited in silence, glancing in the direction the zetraloid had disappeared to and then random locations around himself. The building echoed; both from the steps of humans down the long, branching halls, and their voices. However, here, in the help center, the noise was dulled down like having one’s head buried beneath pillows. It could’ve been fun under the right circumstances, stepping in and out of the noise hampered environment accordingly.

Shaking his head, he glanced towards the door again. He hoped it wouldn’t be long, Canorith seemed in a not so great mood and Terrik didn’t even know he had left. The humans shuffled along, inspecting various items out on display—the latest developments in technology. He watched them with little interest. The zetraloid employee hadn’t forgotten about him, had he? What if he hadn’t asked at all? What if this was the wrong—

“Hi Edge.”

Edge sprang forward into a crowd of humans, causing some to scatter and others to treat him to a sour glare of annoyance or similar response. He pulled himself away from them and retreated several steps. Although displeased, the humans made no move towards him.

Looking over his shoulder, he spotted Punisher standing just as silent and reserved as always. Unfitting name he had, really. The zetraloid had never struck Edge as hostile in any way, but he supposed that it was to be expected from a zetraloid who mingled with humans all day. To the best of Edge’s knowledge Punisher didn’t have a family either, although he considered the humans and other zetraloids as fine replacements. Hackers weren’t mass produced, so the ones that did exist usually had no family to speak of.

“Uh…Edge?”

Edge blinked and shook his head, trying to bring himself back to the present.

“Are…you okay?” Punisher watched him for a few moments before carrying on. “You know, humans don’t like it when you try hiding amongst them almost as much as they don’t like it when you hide in their plants.”

Edge’s helmet fins drooped noticeably as he opened his mouth to speak, “But I—”

“I’m just giving you a hard time.” Punisher shrugged, “So what can I do for you?”

Edge leaned his head towards one shoulder as he raised it up in a partial shrug, “I don’t know.”

“You’re a pain to get info from, you know that, right?”

Once again, Edge merely shrugged. If he knew what he needed he wouldn’t have come here.

Punisher sighed as he rubbed his forehead, “Alright then. In the future can you work that out before interrupting me? I have a job you know.”

“I want a job.”

“Then go get one. Us zetraloids are useful.”

Edge once again went silent, staring off at a nearby crowd and leaving Punisher to stare and wonder.

“What’s your problem?”

“I don’t know…”

With abrupt insight, Punisher pointed triumphantly, “That’s your problem!”

Edge glanced up, red eyes clouded by an unfocused gaze of confusion, “What is?”

“Communication.” Punisher nodded with emphasis at his successful problem solving.

“I don’t get it…”

“Precisely!” Punisher continued with his nodding, “I wouldn’t know what I was supposed to do if the humans didn’t tell me.” Edge’s expression didn’t flicker from its previous state in the least, causing Punisher to sigh again. “No one gets you, Edge. You have to have communication. You have to talk to people.”

“Oh…”

Punisher’s rounded helmet fins twitched as he stared at Edge, once again trying to decipher what he was thinking. It was something Hackers did quite naturally—problem solving—and Edge, he was a very mysterious zetraloid to have such a personality at his age. So quiet. Wherever he had come from, he was definitely different from the city zetraloids Punisher had dealt with.

“You think a lot, don’t you?”

Edge shrugged, “I guess…I dunno.”

Punisher watched him awhile longer before dragging his stare to the busy help desk.

“What do they want from me?” Edge asked at last.

Punisher gazed at the younger zetraloid and blinked, “Care to elaborate on that?”

“The humans.” Edge frowned as he looked at Punisher, “Nothing I do ever makes them happy.”

“Humans are easy to please. You just do whatever they say.”

Easy for him to say maybe. That didn’t seem to work for Edge. Regardless, he nodded. As he turned away, Punisher waited a moment and then retreated to the familiarity of his work zone. Sighing, Edge scurried back outside. This was just something he’d have to deal with alone he guessed.

He cast a glance both ways before setting off at a full run down the street. It was harder to keep a consistent pace in Seaside with all the obstructions. He disregarded any complaints by humans, dodging anything thrown at him as well. Humans weren’t great at aiming anyway and most of the zetraloids he’d gone dashing by hadn’t had a chance to respond.

The buildings of Seaside looked like massive, shimmering blurs, contrasted only by cars whenever he crossed streets. He never paused to glance back, nor did he consider where it was he was headed. His mind was pleasantly numb, blank really, as the frigid wind beat against his face.

At last he stopped. Before him no longer rose towering buildings, but an endless light-brown speckled flatland. To the right, an equally infinite blue span stretched. How long had he run? Judging by the sky it must have been hours. Now sand billowed beneath his feet like plums of lava as he made his way across the shoreline.

Odd white birds squawked while others let out fierce, high pitched cries. Waves of white, foamy water crashed against the shore and glided towards him. He was just barely out of their reach. A gradual incline of lumpy rocks dotted a far stretch of the coast. Their surfaces were wet from water washing over their tops and the sand around them was smooth, undisturbed from anything other than tiny, pencil tip sized prints—perhaps from a small aquatic creature.

Another cold breeze carried in from the ocean, but that wasn’t where Edge’s attention was directed. In the distance a huge land mass stretched far out into the ocean depths. Curious, he set off at a run across the beach. His speed and progress were both significantly hampered by the instability of shifting sands, but he didn’t stop until he had reached the base of this giant rock.

Edge had to tilt his head all the way back in order to see its towering form. Aside from thin, rigid lines worn into it, there didn’t appear to be any way to climb it. He paced its length away from the water with no further findings. As he approached the shoreline again though, he spotted a cove-like indentation just beyond the reach of the ocean.

The water was calm and stagnant. Its murky depths appeared a grayish brown beneath the shadow of the rock mass. Daylight was visible through a low opening in the rock on the other side. Cautiously he stepped into the water, watching as it rose to his knees, then waist.

A stream of water shot down from a pathway imbedded in the rocky cove ceiling, washing over him and emptying into the pool. Edge shook his head, flinging droplets of what felt cold enough to be ice away as he gazed up. A most interesting tunnel had been corroded into the rock.

Without much thought to danger, he grabbed a chunk of rock that was jutting out overhead and swung from it for a moment before pulling himself up. It took quite a bit of maneuvering to wedge himself inside the slippery passageway and proceed to climb. The space narrowed as he proceeded, causing his helmet fins and shoulders to scrape the walls on occasion. Another wave of water flooded down in an overwhelming sloshing and burbling as it beat against his head. For a moment he nearly panicked at his inability to breathe, but the water had made its way around him just in time. His family would never have allowed him to do this; and with good reason.

He continued on his way, once becoming stuck and unable to pry free for quite some time. He emerged at the top just as a wave of water was flowing down. He pulled himself out swiftly to avoid being dragged back down and ran towards the ledge that extended far out into the water. To either side, ocean water could be seen rolling in towards the shore.

The tip of the ledge was quite a good distance away. Now with carefully placed steps, he proceeded on. The raging waters foamed and hissed as they flowed over the rocks again. Still he pressed on until he’d reached the very end. Glancing back, the shoreline was now a thin brown line—maybe he shouldn’t have been out this far. The water slammed against the rock shelf, towering into the sky and washing back. Edge yelped as it dragged him with it, nearly towing him off the side. Clinging to its jagged surface, he held fast until the water subsided. He shook the alarm away mentally then hauled himself back up.

Edge had experienced quite enough of that. Without a second thought, he retreated back the way he had come. Near the tunnel he had climbed through the rock shelf branched off into yet another taller level. He’d feel much safer up there, he had decided. As another wave of water began making its crawl towards him, he leapt, only to tumble onto his back.

Hardly detoured, he tried again with much the same result. His efforts were futile numerous times before he managed to secure a grip and climb. Most zetraloid races were good or at least decent climbers—Shapeshifters were no exception.

From here he had a view of seemingly miles out. The wind shrieked as it passed his transmitters in ferocious thrashing, whisking his scarf along with it. Most humans, and many zetraloids for that matter, would have shied away or shielded themselves, but not Edge. He held his head out so that it would catch it better.

This was more like home. Edge let himself travel back to memories so comforting as he watched the last few minutes of the setting sun. It was enough to take away awareness of the deep chill that had begun to set in for a moment, but then it returned even stronger. His family. His—

Edge’s eyes widened as he gasped. His only way off this giant rock!

The water had submerged the tunnel he had traveled through. He watched in dismay as the waters continued to rise; dark gray waves swirling about as they slapped against the rock cliff. Well, it didn’t look like he’d be going home for awhile. Squinting against the wind, he gazed at the sky and watched the stars that were beginning to sprinkle its blue depths. So Seaside did have stars….if he was still in Seaside that was.

He pulled off his scarf and rang it out before placing it back around his neck. Then he plopped himself down, bringing his knees in towards his chest. He wrapped his arms around them and finally rested his chin on top. Being alone was a feeling he was growing more and more accustomed to.

It wasn’t long before his mind had wandered back to his family. Why had the humans wanted them to be dead? Would they have been mad at him for finding a new family? Everything was always so complicated. Couldn’t life be easy? Even just once? Letting go of his legs, he leaned back, planting his hands on the ground.

He set aside those thoughts in exchange for a more pleasant set. The advice Punisher had given him. Despite his doubts, he’d have to try it for himself when he returned. Maybe it would work; Punisher was pretty smart after all. Yawning, he flopped on his back and gazed up at the stars. Maybe by morning the water would be back down and he could return home.

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Mar 14, 2011 3:15 am

Ah here we go. Very Happy The anticipated chapter 18. After what happened I was wondering how Edge would be in trouble. =. Although I must admit, the anticipation and wonder makes it even better.

Did Canorith repair Shadow? =. Or was he only checking to make sure it was good while Welder Zetra #332 stands smiling in the BG? =) xD Oh. =. Canorith and Terrik stayed up working on Shadow. xD Nevermind then. Poor Edge. =U Of course it wouldn't be easy to explain or anything. Wow, Darryl is making a house call? This surprises me. xD Probably bringing about a thousand bodyguards.

WRONG Canorith, you should have helped him. And as for YOU Terrik, when you can barely walk through the tension filled air, do you really think 'I told you so's are the best thing? Come now I find you intelligent man, don't let me down. 0.0 Yeah guys, shake your heads and leave the little guy. You know how active kids' imaginations are, unless you WANT them to think about something, you never leave them with such thoughts of their failure in their head. D= It's not nice. Sure Shadow is mad, but only time will tell if he is the type to call names and stuff or if he takes it like a man.

Oh boy, Darryl. =U With some more nightstrikes. =. Oh goody. Replace Cipher? Keep dreaming Edge, secretly Darryl is just like Cipher, he'd never replace him. Yep, there is Cipher. =U Wow, him looking at Edge and the way you described his energy pulsing faster and stuff, it was kind of creepy. xD Like I could imagine it perfectly. Apologies all around! =D Canorith is only sorry it happened to him and Darryl is just acting professional, love the sincerity guys, way to go. Wink Poor Edge. =. On the plus side Edge, he could have left you inside with CIPHER. 0.0 A conquered spirit. =O Quite the powerful use of words there Ten.

Your zetras got involved on their own accord DARRYL. Edge was gone from the place when he was attacked. =U Surely Cipher fed you a biased story, or you just assumed your pretty boy was right in all aspects. =\ Say it Darryl, I dare you. "I want Edge dead and I would be glad to see you fail Canorith, so I can take him out in the most cruel of ways." I sense Canorith does understand the seriousness of the situation, but he won't feel the effects or anxiety associated with it until later. =. Poor guy.

Addressing Edge? Whoa Darryl, is he not too 'low' in the ranking chain for you to speak to him? Would it not be a disgrace to your reputation? Darryl has other zetras to murder, brb. Wink Nice job with the description of Edge seeming innocent, but the threat still lingered stuff. I got the feeling, that I think you were trying to get across, very perfectly. =. And I could imagine the scene easily as well. =P TERRIK. Edge stays. =U And yeah the chip won't stop him from anything, but you can clearly see the benefits right?

Terrik: We need that cruel zappy under arm plate from that stupid Section 14 story... =U

TERRIK SHAME. >=. NEVER MENTION THAT STORY AGAIN. xD I MEAN SHAME EDGE SHALL NOT BE ZAPPED. >=. I bet Edge likes to be with Terrik more. =. Although this chapter sure shows he has a mean side. =U Terrik is a mind reader. =) Stay Edge...STAY. WILL EDGE STAY? Find out after a Total Gym commercial. Sounds like an interesting book ya found there Edge, and informative for your future line of wor-DON'T PUSH IT AWAY. D= Keep looking! Poor Edge with his smiling. =. Innocence returns I see. Shouldn't take long, but he never said it shouldn't hurt!

Whoa. =O Good thing Terrik didn't clue Edge in on the impending pain. That wouldn't have been fun. xD Terrik doesn't care he broke years of carefully formed trust with one of the rarest zetraloid types in the universe. =U Why should he? Edge will never amount to anything useful after all. CLEARLY. Oh boy, EDGE STOOOOOOOP. You're leaving? Do you have any idea what Terrik just put in your arm? You just got in trouble. D= Now you're sneaking away? Gosh. >_> Good thing Edge has a lot of endurance. Maybe you should invest in a bike Edge. =) Yay time to find baby Punisher. =)

xD I WANT PUNISHER. >=. Fine fine picky one moment. =U *beep boop beep* Hey Punisher? Some freak is looking for you in the lobby, yeah, by the Skittles machine.

Edge: Skiiiiiiiiittles. =.

Stepping in and out of the noise. xD Does sound rather amusing. Kinda Edgy aren't you Edge? xD Unfitting name for Punisher, but Edge doesn't see what he does to people behind closed doors. 0.0 Ha ha ha. xD I can see Edge standing there with the grin he gave Terrik moments before, thinking about hackers and Punisher's family. xD Helpful Punisher is. =. As expected. Poor Punsher. xDD Edge is so difficult.

Yeah Edge, not all people are mind readers like Terrik and that freak with the eyes you haven't met yet, or Wrath who can't really read minds but HE decides what they're thinking, you need to communicate. =. Keep going with the questions Punisher, he'll let the murderer slip eventually...or talk more, I dunno. You just do what they say to make them happy? Wow Punisher, thanks for generalizing us humans as ungrateful SLAVE DRIVERS.

Punisher: There is no car named the Slave. =U

>_> xDD Punsher randomly abandons Edge. Don't go home Edge they're gonna kill you. D= Or yell. Wow so humans have time to get mad and throw stuff at Edge, while the zetras don't have time to react. +1 for human reflexes! =D xD I guess that makes up for Punisher's generalization insult. I understand how his mind is numb. =O So nice job with that. =P Edge are you getting lost?

Edge: Do you SEE these descriptions? I'm going to run forever!

=. Ohhhh I see, I suddenly want to get lost. Nice water description. =O Edge get away from the water. D= Edge what are you doing? D= Canorith and Terrik are going to be mad and Cipher could be stalking you right now. D= Wow nice description AGAIN. xD This is really cool. Edge what is your motivation being here? >=. Okay Edge, retreat. =U Canorith is going to find your body at the bottom. Well not Canorith he never had those scuba lessons, but you know what I mean. D= Yay he IS retreating. xD Climb Edge climb. 0.0

Uh oh Edge, now look you're stuck. =U =\ What a night you're going to have, hopefully you don't freeze too badly. Aw how sad. D= On a rock, no way down, hugging his legs and all alone. =\ I like the transition from standing, to hugging his legs, to laying on his back. =P So natural. Punisher was pretty smart. =. Yes, yes he was. Wow, what a chapter. =P The length, the depth, the description, it is very clear that a lot of time and planning was put into this..and it shines brightly. I had a GREAT time reading and commenting to it and I thank you to the highest degree for doing so and posting it for readers like me to enjoy! =)

Also I don't expect a long comment to this comment. xD Or a comment to this at all, I commented because I wanted to.

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Mar 14, 2011 4:03 am

Anticpated? Suuuure. And haha I answered a question of yours without having to =D Er yu knw what I mean. I get this idea that my spelling is a bad omen of the quality of my comment back to you in the fiture Looking at the dates itd basically been a month since I posted a chapter ._. Oh and WELDER ZETRA HAHA

Yes a thousand indeed XDD poor Edge C: XD Yes apparently Terrik does think I told you so’s are a good thing to say amidst tension. Especially to your boss. Terrik to Brad: I told you so.
Yes what ebil kid-not very good with people meanies.

Shadow: Uglyface =c

XPPP I kid I kid D:
Of course he wouldn’t replace Cipher. Especially with a little guy XD Edge is just dumb c: I could tell you mention of that zetra is actually a random appearance of a certain one you know BTW
I’m glad you find it creepy that was incredibly hard to describe. Good for perfect ability to understand. I feel accomplished. Srsly. Oh yes =) of course. About apologies. My stomach is being loud. Really loud XD
Yes they are XDDD they are so sincere c: Yes he could have haha XDDD Yay for powerful terms C:

Clearly darryl’s zetras are angels. Cipher; We ain’t dead =|
That’s not what I meant.
Ahem
Yes his pretty boy was clearly right in all aspects DUR XD HAHA what you wish for him to say I mean. Did you just say poor about Canorith? D: XDD this is madness c: XD Yes he does ololol XDD have other zetras to murder I mean XPP

Why thank you c: Yes argue your point Brad. HAHA At Terrik’s statement by brad.
HAHA
Maybe he does, maybe he doesn’t c: XD Terrik is a bit weird yes…he doesn’t approve of Edge much. Can you blame him though in all reality? Edge is illegal and causing trouble. Would you wanna be stuck with that? XP Total gym XDD
Edge: reading words = bad =c
Indeed Terrik didn’t XDD And yes it is a good thing he didn’t. BAH Terrik dun care XDD and Edge is…not the brightest. He dun wanna be attacked by an evil Terrik. Invest in a bike haha XDDD baby Punisher XDDD
Skittles machine =D No Edge doesn’t haha >=U XD see I mean. XD
More poors and helpful and etcs =D
HAHA XD very nice future telling Brad. YES XDDD Wrath does. XDDD the murderer. Hahahahaha yesss! YEEEEES Punsiher has c: spelled right though. Do you feel good about your human self? C:
YES XDDD because humans are like got bumped into? INSTA RAGE. And zetras are like =U got bumped into hm…how do I feel about this?

XDDDDD Edge be talkin at you sir. You suddenly want to get lost XDDD
Edge is a dumby XDDHAH never had the scuba lessons XDD This is what happens when little kids can run far and climb well with no supervision D: XDD Edge had enough sense to retreat c: Yes the results of dumbness and I bet Canorith/Terrik won’t want to have to go find him either =U

I’m glad you like that transition it took some work to get it to look right. Notice the Was factor XDD I kid. Aye I be glad you enjoyed it. It was a ton of work for sure. Lots of description as I mentioned previously. Action not to much but =U
It is my pleasure c:

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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Mon Mar 28, 2011 1:41 am

Ever get distracted? =U When writing a story and start doing something really random? I started singing Sort of >_> a song which I was calling Beetle Weeds and Seaside Greens >,> XD It made no sense at all.

Anyway I split this thing in half cuz it was FAT C: and I found a nice break for it. It was 15 pages lol. My chapters are supposed to be 4 pages >_> OH WELL C: Also my brother is utterly disgusted by Shatter in other news.


------------------------------

Chapter Nineteen
Edge crouched down. Water from a drain pipe spattered over his dark helmet, sweeping along the sides of his face and dripping from his chin. His helmet fins perked up. Again he heard footsteps and a group of voices.

“Did you check over there?”

Edge frowned and pressed himself closer to the wall. Really there was no good hiding spot down the alley he had chosen. Darkness was minimal considering the time of day and the alley was surprisingly bare of anything useful—crevasses, piles of garbage, dumpsters. The chances of his pursuers falling for such tricks were slim anyway. Still, he couldn’t help but wish for some kind of better cover. It would only be a matter of time before—

“Found him!”

Edge tensed, having a good idea of what was to follow. A hand reached down, snatching him by an arm, and flung him into the center. The momentum threw him off balance and he stumbled to his knees, palms splashing into a shallow pool of stagnant rain water. Gaze trained downward, he had an excellent view of a set of feet, primarily black in color, offset only by spiraling, green, box patterns.

“Edgy! Off pretty far alone, aren’t ya?”

He tilted his head back to meet the gaze of the zetraloid he was sure he’d find—Cipher. The Nightstrike’s glowing face marks casted a ghostly green haze on his grin.

“We came to find you.” Cipher laughed under his breath and glanced at one of the others, “Sort of anyway.”

Edge had already guessed that much, considering they had been chasing him for quite some time once he’d reached the city. Cipher spun around in a confident stride and headed the opposite direction. Two of the others in his team of Nightstrike zetraloids took up a place to either side of Edge while a third traveled directly behind, creating a diamond formation around him.

“Your owner called mine.” Cipher directed them out of the alley. They were away from central Seaside—mostly bordering small food shops intended for tourists that had come to see the bay. “Said you had run off again.”

Edge didn’t bother looking up. He couldn’t see much of anything while walking behind Cipher anyway, just the Nightstrike’s green and black hair swishing from side to side. Even if he did have a view of their chosen path he’d have hardly wished to stop and observe it at the moment.

“Stupid move.” Cipher paused at a crosswalk, waiting for the light to change color. “Zetraloids are supposed to listen to their owners at all times.”

The breeze blew in the usual swarm of scents Seaside was famous for—warm sourdough bread and a tangy blend of honey and lemon, exclusive to a certain type of tartar sauce. It was soon overpowered by the reek of cheap seafood that reminded Edge of what taking a huge gulp of marshy ocean water might taste like. A push from behind alerted him that he should be walking again.

“The ones that don’t?” Cipher took a moment to glance back at Edge, “Life isn’t as nice for them.”

Edge’s helmet fins drooped, but he kept quiet. The smells of the market strip had faded away, replaced by dank and tainted rain water. A mixture of car exhaust and smoke built within the tunnel they had entered. No cars traveled this road any longer if he was to guess, but the stench remained.

Edge’s foot caught on a jagged piece of asphalt that had lodged itself upright like a thick spear and as he walked along more pieces jabbed at his feet. The few lights still working were too dim to be of any use, barely a dull orange ring around them. He had never come home this way before, which left another question. Was home where they were headed? It seemed unlikely for a zetraloid like Cipher.

“Not very talkative, are ya, Edge?”

The group stopped without warning, causing Edge to bump Cipher. He couldn’t see in perfect darkness like they could. Fortunately, no one made any remark about it and they were already moving along once again. Sunshine from the opposite end had begun to light the path as they approached the exit. At first, it was just a deep gray shadow that over time grew to something similar to a poorly lit room. It cast a sickening orange glow on all the zetraloids, himself included.

Cipher rounded abruptly. The rest of his team dispersed in a sudden scatter as he grabbed Edge by the shoulders and slammed him against the closest wall. Edge coughed as the breath was knocked from him then tapered off into a milder bout.

Cipher’s glowing face brightened as his neon green eyes narrowed in contrast to his widening grin. “Now listen up.” He began digging his thumbs into the joints connecting Edge’s shoulders to the rest of his body then leaned in closer. “I don’t like you…”

Edge flinched.

Cipher released him and took a step back. Edge’s feet had hardly touched the ground before he was rammed back against the wall by Cipher’s foot. He squirmed, with no positive results.

“…and I don’t like your friends much either.”

Cipher let him drop again. Edge hit the ground on his hands and knees. The moist surface soaked through his gloves easily. He shook his head and took a shallow breath but barely had a chance to recover before being kicked another time. The force lifted him off the ground and sent him crashing back down.

The others were laughing. This was far too familiar for Edge’s liking. Last time the only thing that had saved him was Terrik and Canorith. Neither of them were there now. He was completely on his own.

When no additional kick came, he hoisted himself to rest on one flattened knee and a foot, placing his hand over his other knee. The Nightstrikes’ jeering laughter tapered off until only a distant, leaky drip kept pace with Edge’s pained breaths.

“Hey.”

Edge forced himself to gaze up at Cipher.

“Get up.”

He did as instructed, against the protest of his body. He had scarcely been standing a moment when Cipher brought his knee up, clipping his chin and knocking him off balance. He stumbled backwards, catching his foot on a stray shard of asphalt and soon found himself on his back.

“What’s wrong, Edge?” Cipher jerked his head to one side in mock confusion as he walked over, a slight hop to his step.

Edge didn’t answer. He huddled himself up in an attempt of protection. It didn’t stop Cipher from yanking him up again though. The Nightstrike swung him by one arm, letting go at the last moment. The wall made connection with his side, jabbing his own arm against his body as he slumped to the ground. One leg pulled in a few inches closer to where he had come to rest as he coughed and shut his eyes.

“Kids are such wimps.” Cipher chuckled. He reached down in a careless swoop to retrieve Edge yet another time, “You’re funny.”

Dazed from lack of oxygen and head rattling impact, Edge hung limp from Cipher’s grasp. He was only faintly aware of the Nightstrike continuing along his way by the bumpy tug it had on him. He squinted his eyes against the returning light, its rays like an unwelcomed explosion of white. It took him several minutes to readjust his vision.

Taking another pained breath he gazed around. For sure they had gone an alternate path, if this led to the same destination at all. A freeway—six car lanes in span—stretched beneath the overpass that they were walking along. No humans occupied the area, aside from the ones driving cars beneath. Edge turned his head against the bright light to the other side; the tall skyscrapers of the city were a backdrop behind a channel of water.

Edge’s helmet fins rose in alarm as Cipher thrust his arms out over the rail without warning. A chilly breeze swept up from below as he dangled over the traffic lanes. His feet kicked as if to find a walking surface, but nothing lay below them, leaving him utterly reliant on Cipher.

“Careful.” Cipher smirked, “You might fall.”

Edge’s helmet fins lowered as he dared to look over his shoulder at what lie below. It would be a nasty drop. If the fall didn’t cause a problem, all the cars would. Cipher’s grip loosened. Edge grabbed at Cipher’s sleeve with frantic hands, and squeezed it tight once in his grasp. Cipher chuckled.

“Cipher, should you be—”

“Shut up, Rift.” Cipher grumbled. He flung Edge out of his arms then caught him again.

“But we were just supposed to bring him back.”

“We will.” Cipher tilted his arm to the side, letting Edge dangle from it for a moment before pulling him off with the opposite hand. He held Edge upside down, letting the zetraloid sway by one foot.

“But Darryl said—”

“I know what he said!” Reaching down with his other hand, he pulled Edge up once again.

“Then how will you—” Rift cut himself off and shook his head.

Cipher smirked as he pinned Edge’s arms to his sides, “It’s not our fault if he ‘slips.’”

In the same instant Cipher let go. It may have only been seconds, but to Edge it felt like more. The cold wind as he spun head over heels. The sickening churn in his stomach. The blur of grays and reds. Then impact. Static. Black.



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PostSubject: Re: Faint Deception    Tue Mar 29, 2011 5:44 am

Beetle Weeds and Seaside Greens. =O Wow that's epic. xD Yaaaay chapter 19. =D

Way to choose the alley with the fewest creepy dark places Edge. =U Oh great, grabbed by the ghoulies....or the Cipher. =. This is not going to end well. D= Or I can't see how it does, unless Wrath shows up with a craving for Cipher limbs. Really Cipher? You came to find Edge? Oh, thought you were trying to find breakfast in that alley. =U Oh joy, time to beat up Edge in front of tourists. WELCOME TO SEASIDE. >=(

CANORITH. Why would you CALL DARRYL?! I think he wants Edge dead. =U Not Darryl, Canorith. Yeah Cipher, cause you listen so well right? Nice smells and taste description. Very Happy I think you showed me before but dang, it adds a surprising amount of depth to the situation. Life isn't nice even for zetras who listen Cipher. =U Look at Challenger....-errr....look at Naraku-....er....well look at Edge for example. =U

Tunnel walk. =. Walking to his death I think. Wow nice glow description. Very Happy Poor Edge. xD DISPERSE EVERYONE. =D Very good. Poor Edge. o.0 Hang in there buddy, you can take the pain. Edge has no friends Cipher, what are you talking about?

Veng: This is MY story replaced with this...Edge! D= *gets shoved out*

=\ Come on Edge, you can take them! EDGE EDGE EDGE EDGE! =D Dumb Cipher. >=. How dare you command Edge. Poor Edge. =( He's just a kid, what's Cipher's problem? =\ Here we are on the bridge thing. =. Cipher, we get it, you can beat up kids. =U Poor Edge. 0.0 Wounded and trying to hang on. D= Cipher you're a real jerk. =U Not a fake one or an artificial jerk, a real BRAND NAME, expensive one. =U

Darryl: Only the best for me. =)

>_> Yeeeeah. At least I can have peace knowing Edge survives. =U But at what cost? Excellent chapter. Very Happy I enjoyed it greatly and it reminded me how much I dislike Cipher. =P And you have been doing an insane job with the descriptions and using other ways to add to stuff, like Edge smelling stuff. =. Very great, thanks for posting. Wink

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Faint Deception

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