Week 24.5 – UXM

Previously: Twain was warned by Yi Fan’s servant, Ari, about the bald man. And now…

“Who is the bald man?” Twain asked.

“You don’t want to know,” Ari replied. “He’s evil. The scariest man I’ve ever seen.”

“Scarier than the Czar?”

Ari shook his head. “But the Czar is not a man. I wouldn’t call him a god, but he’s more than a man.”

“Yeah, I guess you’re right,” Twain said, feeling the crystal burn cold against his chest.

“But the bald man is crueler,” Ari said. “You don’t want to meet him, trust me.”

Twain looked away toward the distant ridge, barely visible through the canopy of foliage. “Okay, fine. Let’s go back.”

They walked back to the village together. Ari knew the area pretty well, but was a hopeless outdoorsman, stumbling over roots and flaling his way past low-hanging branches. “I guess you spend most of your time indoors, huh?” Twain asked.

“What are you talking about?” Ari said. “I’m a gardener.”

“Are you kidding me?” Twain asked. “You act like you’ve never seen plants before.”

“I keep the plants on the estate well-maintained. Not like this.” Ari looked around them with disgust. “This is all so… unkempt.”

“Fair enough,” Twain said. “I mentioned it because I hoped you could tell me the best way to get to the City of the Moon.”

“I’d ask the bald man to take me,” Ari said.

“Really?” Twain sounded skeptical. “I thought you said the bald man was evil and scary.”

[blockquote type=”blockquote_quotes” align=”right”]“But the Czar is not a man. I wouldn’t call him a god, but he’s more than a man.”[/blockquote]“He is,” Ari said. “Which is exactly the point. I would sooner talk to him than go there. Because it’s suicide!”

“You don’t know that,” Twain said.

“Why do you think it’s called the City of the Moon?” Ari asked. “What would happen to you if you were standing on the Moon right now?”

“I don’t know,” Twain said. “There’s no air, so I guess I would suffocate.”

“Exactly,” Ari said. “It’s a lifeless place, and so is the City of the Moon.”

“Okay, fine,” Twain said as they emerged from the trees to walk into the village. “You know, you really need to calm…”

A black sedan rounded a nearby corner and roared toward them.

“It’s him!” Ari said. “We’re dead!”

“Not yet,” Twain said. He shoved Ari toward a nearby house. “Find a place to hide. I’ll lead him away.”

Ari grabbed at him. “But the mistress said…”

Twain punched him hard in the jaw. Ari went down, and Twain ran. He didn’t like hitting the kid, but it should keep suspicion off him. Twain ducked through alleys and hurdled cars, trying to lose his pursuer before heading to Yi Fan’s estate.

But suddenly, the sedan was there in front of him. Twain tumbled over the hood.

The bald man got out, smiling. He said something in Russian that Twain didn’t understand. Twain took up a defensive stance, feeling the crystal throb against his chest. He would let his fists do the talking.

He heard a savage growl a second before something hit him in the back of the head. Everything went black.

What hit him? And what’s going on with Metalord and Digger? Join us next week for the answers in our next exciting episode!

To read from the beginning, click here

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2 Responses to Week 24.5 – UXM

  1. Bobby says:

    Missing link to the next part.

  2. Tony Frazier says:

    Sorry, that’s the type of thing I was planning to clean up this week. It’s fixed now. Thanks.

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