Swamped Chapter 15 Page 25

You can’t just leave. Somebody else is bound to report the shaking; you don’t know how widespread it was, but it must have caught someone’s attention.

No, you need to help Eighth pull himself together. You’re not giving up on your friend.

You think you spot something familiar poking out of his closet, amidst all the inventions. Could that be his old instrument?

“Stay out of there!” he shouts as you draw near, but you have to know. You grab for it and…

And a box falls out. You barely notice; turns out you didn’t even see the instrument, anyways. It’s just another of his in-progress projects.

“Is this what you’ve been making all the noise with?” you ask, staring at the contraption in your hands.

“No. Just, an old idea that didn’t work out,” he grumbles. “Thought I might come back to it some day, that’s all. The big project’s almost done, it’s even functioning, but there’s a few final touches I can’t do just yet. Now quit touching my stuff!”

“All right, I’m sorry,” you sigh. It was probably too much to hope for. You put the device back, then you lean down to pick up the box. “I just thought I saw something…”

Suddenly, there’s a flash of light and you can’t see clearly.

“Oh dammit, that’s the last straw!” Eighth shouts. “Get out!”

You feel yourself being shoved out and hear a door slam just before your eyesight returns.

What the hell is Eighth working on? Is he making some kind of blinding weapon? It’s the sort of thing Sergeant Ash might ask for, and he’s one of the few people Eighth still talks to…

You wonder if you should go back in and try to confront Eighth again, angry as he is. Then again, it might be better not to go in alone; perhaps you should ask someone to come with you. Or, maybe you should just leave him there, and go report on what you’ve learned.

What are you going to do?

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note to self: throw tom eighth a party/intervention. you’ve done what you can, it’s time to move on to bigger and better things


This is how things went down.

Warning: contains singing.