|The Reploids of the Late Master Thomas Book One
Author: Hellbat Schilt PM
Master Albert failed, but now Master Thomas has a new group of reploids. The leader, designed to be the most powerful reploid of all the team, barely manages to escape the group's failed attempt of their first attack. Only two others were left with him. However, a power grows within them. If the resetting of the world comes, it's by their hands. No adult themes or language.Rated: Fiction T - English - Adventure/Sci-Fi - Chapters: 36 - Words: 86,965 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 4 - Updated: 08-08-12 - Published: 01-16-12 - Status: Complete - id: 7748525
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Shouji cast a glance behind him to make sure he wasn't being followed. Luckily, he was trusted enough for Ike to remove the detonator in his blade so he didn't have to worry about the explosive death.
"The Assassin Hunters will eventually crash and burn... I'll be the one to make sure of that..." Shouji said as he pulled his cloak closer to him. "Anyone that comes to retrieve me will receive no mercy."
He entered the Regulator building, his cloak disappearing and replaced by a white shirt and white pants with some glasses appearing. Janitor jobs were needed there and they were pretty desperate. He'd already been there since yesterday.
"Kanashimi, glad to see you here," the boss said. "Have you seen Saphire or Kuru?"
Shouji shook his head and went on with his work. He clutched Biometal Altair tightly in his pocket. One day, he would return to Kemnee. That day, Ike, Marth, and anyone else that stood in his way would die. After the Assassin Hunter's destruction, he'd find Eva and Venniece.
He pulled out a small object and flipped it on, stopping in his work. A hologram of Shouji appeared and began a message.
"Kemnee, if you've found this, this means that I'm dead. I've always loved you as my brother and wish that we had known each other for longer. I'm sorry for the way I've acted. You must understand. The torture there was too hard. They used something to duplicate Eva and Venniece to torture me. I want you to find Eva and Venniece before Ike does. Always remember, though. Your brother loved you."
The message ended by Shouji bowing slightly to show respect before the hologram flickered out. Shouji shoved it away in his pocket. He'd get it to Kemnee somehow. He let out a breath of air and shook his head. Everything was going wrong. He'd need more power to knock out the Assassin Hunters. How he'd get more power was beyond his knowledge. He shook his head.
"I can't afford to care about the innocents. I don't care how the job gets done. Better to let a few innocents die while destroying the threat instead of sitting back while trying to figure out how to destroy the threat while more innocents die, right?"
Saphire looked around as the people that were left in the cells started to gather together. They were probably talking about whether to join the Assassin Hunters or not. Saphire frowned. It seemed like they got a choice whether they were going to join or not. The thought that Saphire and Kuru didn't really have a choice worried Saphire since it could mean that the Assassin Hunters knew about her's and Kuru's gifts. So far, the only one she actually liked was Kemnee. Unlike the others, he seemed to be kinder and he expressed worry over Kuru. Those traits were the only things that kept her from attacking him inside of the room.
The whirring noise from her generator slowed down and her systems indicated that she was in a blue-to-green stage unique to Kuru and her. The blue stage was an extremely high-efficiency stage. She sighed with relief. The core wasn't damaged by the electric shock. If it had, she would have to concentrate so hard that she wouldn't be able to do anything, just to fix the problem. Until Kuru was safe, that was not happening.
She turned her head as the door to the room opened and Kemnee walked in, looking saddened again. He led the people into various groups, making it so that the leaders of the groups could come and get them more easily. After that, he came back to Saphire and Kuru.
"I need to warn you," Kemnee said quietly with his head bowed. "If you go to the mechanics, they may reprogram you as they integrate the buster."
Saphire slowly stood as she tested the patches and adjustments that she had made. She quickly had a quick mental conversation, or ping, as Saphire called it, before coming to a decision.
"I'd like to do the installation myself. The only person I trust with that type of control is Sis," Kuru said. She looked over to Saphire and then back to Kemnee.
"I'll take care of the Operating System for her buster, having once had one myself," Saphire explained. "I don't use it since I removed said buster. My previous job had all low-ranked members equipped with them. I never got around to deleting the OS, so I can simply adjust it for her. It'll take a few hours, though."
Kemnee glanced over his shoulder. Some of the other groups left. Others were left dead on the ground. Still others were deciding.
"Hours?" Kemnee asked, his face becoming worried. "The training will start once everyone's agreed or disagreed." He paused for a second and added hastily, "We'll be in the cyber world, so you'll have a buster there. You just won't have one when you come into the real world. I can make sure that our techies don't do anything to you two while you're in the cyber world." Kemnee glanced over his shoulder again, his face still worried, making Saphire shift her weight defensively.
"That's fine," Saphire said. "I'm just saying that, for actually installing it into her systems, it'll take a while." Saphire's eyebrows furrowed. She'd be watching them as well. The more time she was in a system, the better control she had, so it was possible for her to block all access to anything other than Kuru's combat systems. They had been part of each other ever since... she had hacked into Kuru to wipe her memory back then...
"I trust you," Kuru said, the unsaid part being "and my sister".
A gentle smile crept onto Kemnee's face and he nodded. He turned around and led Saphire and Kuru away from the prison and into the corridors of the Assassin Hunter building.
"Hey, so, I'll be with you throughout the training, but I'll be conscious physically, so I can watch over you two while we're training," Kemnee said. "If I ever seem like I'm distracted, that's probably why." Saphire nodded. It sounded good to her.
Kemnee led them through various passageways into a lab where the training was to be conducted. Saphire looked around the lab, checking the systems of the room. Nothing there was capable of breaking her firewall, as far as she could tell. Kemnee laid himself on one of the lab tables and several techies clamped him in and connected wires to his head.
"Let's get in," Saphire pinged to Kuru as they walked over to the lab tables on either side of Kemnee.
"One more thing," Kemnee said as Saphire and Kuru got clamped in, "There have been... a few deaths in training sequences." Kemnee grimaced. "If a person dies in the cyber world, he or she dies in real life as well. It'd be better if we stick together. The threat seems to come from the Undernet, but we've built up heavy defensive procedures that are supposed to block access to us."
"We'll be fine," Saphire assured. She could tell that there were some areas that were different in the cyber world, which she guessed were the locations of the biometals. She found this out since she was already in their network.
"Sis? Will I be safe?" Kuru asked as she laid down on the table on one side of Kemnee.
There was a slight twitch in the waves that they felt when they were online. Saphire called it "Synergy". It showed her approval of Kuru's cynicism.
"As far as I can tell," Saphire replied. Her reply was true since she didn't see anything, but she didn't have complete control over the Assassin Hunter's network yet. "Interesting they haven't detected me yet," she said to Kuru and then asked one of the techies, "Get us in, please." Manners get you everywhere. People tended to underestimate you that way.
The techie smiled and gently hooked Saphire in as the other techies hooked Kuru into the program that would run the training.
One of the techies walked over to a computer and clicked a mouse. Saphire's and Kuru's vision went black for a second, but Saphire remained calm. Nothing seemed to be affecting her. Besides... There was Kemnee.
Her vision opened up to the view inside of an Egyptian pyramid, the walls lined by torches. The two girls and three boys were there, their weapons in hand. Kemnee looked around him and nodded.
"This place is a network of pyramids," Kemnee explained as he pulled out his saber. "There's no way outside, but there are biometals."
"Sounds easy enough," Saphire said and Kuru nodded.
"There's also traps like iron maidens, skeletons, mummies, and anything else that they've decided to put in here," Kemnee continued.
"Maybe a little bit harder."
"Then let's go!" one of the girls yelled and the five teammates dashed off through the corridors, splitting up as soon as they made their way towards a circle that split into several different passages.
Kemnee sighed. "Let's hope nothing happens."
Saphire nodded as she looked around. It was slightly easier to integrate with the system and she estimated another fifteen minutes before she could take complete administrative control.
"That was quite a bit of hardware for something I can do without much though..." she blurted out and winced. She forgot that she could be heard by others here.
"Sis? This is the cyber world?" Kuru asked as she looked around. Yet another thing that Saphire had forgotten. Kuru always integrated systems with her and saw it in the same way that she did.
"Yeah," Saphire replied. "Kemnee, I would suggest we go in that direction," she said while she pointed towards a particular knot. It seemed to be important... in one way or another.
Kemnee shrugged. "I'll follow you wherever you go." The visor that was attached to his ears dropped down so that it was in front of his eyes.
Saphire nodded as her hand dropped to the hilt of her ZSaber. Ready as well. An interesting thought struck her. What if she met her's and Kuru's... father? Grand father? She didn't know what to call Zero, but she knew that he had disappeared after giving them his blueprints and coding.
Kuru's hands dropped to her sheathes where she kept her blades and Saphire made a precursory check of Kuru's firewall. It didn't look like anyone had tried to mess around with it.
Kuru started walking towards the knot, already knowing the configuration that Saphire was thinking of. Kuru would scout out and Saphire would clean up after her, letting Kuru develop her own style. That's what they learned in training.
Saphire downloaded a map of the pyramids and sent it to Kuru, the information taking the form of a slight flicker of light before entering into what Saphire called Kuru's Avatar.
Saphire didn't mind that she could see be in cyberspace and yet view it as the rest of the world. For now, it was just time to follow Kuru and ensure her safety.
"So what's this flag we're trying to get?" Saphire asked Kemnee as she made a mental note: Thirteen minutes till control.
"It's actually a data chip," Kemnee said as he followed Saphire and Kuru. "What we need to do is gather the data chips from all of the teams and bring them to our base. Not as easy as it may sound when the teams might be waiting for you at your base. There is a distance that they can't go beyond unless stealing our chips, though, so that helps." Kemnee looked behind himself as something made a noise behind him. He flinched and said, "Sounds like one of our members got killed."
One of the boys ran past Saphire, silently muttering under his breath. "Stupid iron maiden. Just had to be behind the door."
Saphire sighed. "That's why you WAIT for the rest of your team," she said. "A rookie mistake that would have sent you back to basic in the military and cleaning out the pots for a week." Which boy was he anyway? He was the one that selected brass knuckles, but... they never introduced themselves, did they... Need to rectify that. "I'm Saphire Tsuki and this is my sister, Kuru."
She couldn't believe herself. She was actually being... polite? Eh, it wasn't a good idea to let him go alone.
Kuru waved happily with a big smile. "Pleasure to meet you. And you are?"
The boy blushed and scratched the back of his head as he walked backwards while in front of them. "Sorry. My name is Zataki."
"Join us. I've at least got a map," Saphire said and sent the map as an attachment rather than what she did with Kuru. She didn't have the ability to do it like she could with Kuru.
Kemnee stumbled, a surprised look on his face. "How did you get a map of this place?" he asked.
"Know that thing I said? I've been doing it since that screen popped up," she said, calmly and professionally. She grinned. She was in her element. Military and paramilitary organizations had always been where she was in her element and was the calmest. "I didn't really need all that hardware... though the boost in control of my Avatar is nice."
Kemnee's jaw dropped and the anger was noticeable.
"Yep! She even made a firewall to protect me!" Kuru added and Saphire felt like smacking her forehead. That sooo did not help. "And we can communicate in pings without having to be connected to a network."
"I see data differently from most people, so this is a good change in pace," Saphire finished. She stopped moving and tsked. "Seriously. It's been almost an hour and you haven't noticed. I'm disappointed."
"Saphire!" Kemnee said angrily. "You don't do things like that! You're liable to get killed." He gripped his saber more tightly and seemed to be waiting for her to attack. "If you're not going to attack, we might as well begin our training... again," he said, his voice controlled.
Ten minutes till control...
"Why would I attack?" Saphire asked as she shrugged. That seemed to make him relax. "The person I've got a problem with isn't you." Kuru was right. She didn't really know if they were enemies. "For all I know, I signed up without knowing," she said and then mentally added, "But I will... soon."
"Sis, what're the knots anyway?" Kuru asked as they started moving again. Her curious tone was natural for her, so Saphire didn't think anything of it.
"Beats me. That's what I want to know," she replied.
Kemnee continued to follow, still a little bit angry, but seemingly content. Screams and gunfire sounded in the distance. Screams that were suddenly silenced.
"I should tell you," Kemnee began uneasily, "you'll feel pain here, but you'll disappear and reappear at the base perfectly fine."
Zataki groaned. "Yeah. I found that out the hard way."
Saphire sighed. "Looks like more people are fighting. Kuru?" She decided to talk in a normal fashion, for their benefit, but she and Kuru could get more out of less.
"Probably. Wanna?" Kuru winked and her arm with the buster in it changed into it.
"We'll see." Saphire's head tilted. Whoever got cut off was going to be mad... it'd probably end in a revenge spiral. "Might not be a good idea though."
"Let's get em'!" Zataki yelled as he sped down the corridor and turned into another corridor that led towards the fighting.
"H-hey!" Saphire shouted as she ran after him. "You wanna get killed again, kid?" She accidentally activated one of her hacking powers and one of the limiters on her Avatar lifted, enabling her to run faster. "Snap!" she exclaimed and mentally berated herself.
"Let's go!" Kuru shouted with a laugh, making Saphire nod as she sighed.
"We better bail out the kid, I guess," Saphire said reluctantly. "Why do I always find myself with some idiot group of hotshots?" she thought, though not really complaining. Her hand shot to the sword that had been with her for as long as she could remember, her movements smoothing out and a smirk gradually covering her face. "Seems like fun anyway..." she added quietly, though it was loud enough for someone to possibly hear, but she doubted anyone was paying attention.
"HHHHEEEEELLLLPPPP!" Zataki yelled as he ran back through the corridors and towards Saphire, shots being fired all around him and digging into him. "They're gonna get me!"
Another team came out of the corridor into the large circular room that connected the two corridors together. The team opened fire on Zataki, making him fall to the ground a second before vanishing.
"He's never going to be a Sargent," Kemnee sighed.
Saphire took in the situation quickly. A sniper in the back. A girl with sais, a boy with a revolver, a few others with various ranged weapons, as well as the leader who was in the middle of the group. The leader was the most dangerous since he carried a large rocket launcher in one hand and a machine gun in the other.
Kemnee leapt over her head and started to block the oncoming shots from the team and yelled, "Saphire! Take Kuru and retreat! Kuru can fire at them while I block! I'll take care of the leader and you take care of the rest!"
Saphire nodded. Kuru started to shoot them and Saphire smirked. "If he thought someone like them was just going to be an idiot..." she thought.
"Let's get them!" Saphire pinged to Kuru.
"Alpha plan, right?"
"You know it."
Saphire quickly ran the plan through her head. It'd let them take out the people on the sidelines, mainly following Kemnee's orders, but she could make sucker-strikes at the leader if he needed the help. Her sword ignited and Saphire knelt, preparing to jump and use the walls to her advantage. Kuru released a wide range of blasts and shot at random opponents to get their attention off Saphire as Saphire leapt and kicked off the walls and sliced through the team in several spots relatively fast.
"No! Saphire! What're you doing?" Kemnee yelled as he continued blocking the shots and Saphire took out one of the team.
A bolt from the back fired and grazed Kemnee's head as he cut down another opponent. He said something, but Saphire didn't catch it. She saw the leader raise his rocket launcher and Saphire leapt away to move around the walls once more.
"Kemnee!" she thought as the leader fired in Kemnee's direction.
Kemnee turned and raised his blade. For a split-second, his eyes widened as the rocket connected with his blade. The force from the shot threw him violently back and he skidded across the floor as the leader and some of the group turned to face Saphire, the rest of them firing at Kuru.
Saphire snarled. "Oh, I don't think so!" She jumped onto another wall and launched herself towards the group. "I've had a LONG time in war to learn these skills after all!"
"Sis! The rockets!" Kuru pinged as the leader took his time to reload his rocket launcher.
"Got it," Saphire said as she took out one more person and lunged to destroy the rocket launcher.
The leader maneuvered out of the way, Saphire ZSaber barely missing the launcher as a blind shot from the sniper missed her. She landed on the other side of them and her pupils morphed into cat-like pupils. "NO ONE THREATENS MY SISTER, HEAR ME?" she yelled, her voice echoing through the corridors. She swiped again and a few more of the team fell.
"Kuru! Kill me!" Kemnee pleaded as he lay on the ground.
"Why didn't you respawn?" Saphire wondered as she sidestepped to avoid another shot from the leader's rocket launcher. The shot grazed her, but that was all it needed to throw her back into a wall.
"My kill!" the leader bellowed and the team nodded and focused their attention on Kuru.
"Finish her, then!" the girl with the sais hissed.
"Kuru, can you help him with your power?" Saphire asked as she tried to get her senses straight. The leader was taking his precious time with reloading. "Idiot," she thought.
"I can try, but I don't know if the nanites'll help in the cyber world. Here, your power would be more helpful, probably."
Saphire could see Kuru walk over to Kemnee and touch his head tentively.
"I don't think he trusts me that much!" Kuru said.
"Please, just kill me!" Kemnee pleaded again.
Saphire stood as she wiped the pain away mentally. She tsked. "If only I had adminis... No. This is training... that would be unforgivable," she thought and then shouted, "We never abandon one of our own, Kemnee!"
"If you kill me now, I'll come back fully functional," Kemnee said as he gritted his teeth together.
Saphire quickly ran through everything that MIGHT work.
"Huh?" Kuru said.
Saphire ignored Kuru's confusion. There wasn't enough time now. She looked for data of anything out of place, hoping that the leader wouldn't finish reloading before she found one. She was barely aware of Zataki barreling into the room and leaping over the leader and striking him in the head.
"You! Girl! Get him! Now!" he yelled as he landed and struck the leader in the gut.
The leader knocked Zataki away as Saphire was hurriedly copying the data and soon Zataki was gone with a volley from the leader's machine gun.
"I guess do what he says," Saphire said as the data finished copying.
"Got it, Sis."
Out of the corner of her eye, Saphire could see Kuru drive her knife into Kemnee's chest, about where the generator should be. Kemnee's scream of pain echoed through the room before he disappeared.
"No more games!" the leader said as he brought his rocket launcher up to bear on Saphire.
Saphire smirked. Very much so... "TAKE THIS!" Saphire yelled as she raised her arm. Saphire shot away from the leader and towards Kuru's location. She glanced behind her to see an iron maiden shut firmly around the leader and she nodded. "Kuru! Switch to Gamma!"
She lashed out with her sword into the backs of some of the team, hoping that Kuru ducked... or jumped... depending on what she felt like... Why was this team even larger than their own? This certainly didn't help confirm her suspicions that the Assassin Hunters knew about her's and Kuru's abilities.
Luckily, Kuru jumped overhead, firing a few buster shots at the team and the sniper threw his rifle in the air.
"We're going to die!" he shouted as he tossed a data chip towards Saphire. "Here, take it!"
"Idiot!" the girl with the sais yelled as she stabbed the sniper and Saphire grabbed the data chip. "Kanaki! Take care of the other one!"
Kanaki, the boy with the revolver, spun around, facing a very angry Saphire. The team stepped slowly back.
"It's just a game, right?" Kanaki asked uneasily.
Saphire growled, her cat eyes darting around and taking in the entire scene in no time. Kuru smiled simply, but it almost seemed menacing.
"You're in for it now," Kuru said as Saphire's hair seemed to rise and face in all directions. Saphire stuffed the chip in her pocket and took a step closer. "Sis's on the brink."
Saphire jumped towards the wall and bounded back off, slicing through an opponent as Kuru did the same, taking out Kanaki in her first blow. They maneuvered around the place, their forms melting into streaks of light. The few teammates left looked all around themselves, each one falling, one-by-one. "Shouldn't have challenged the Cyber-Masters," Saphire's and Kuru's voice echoed through the room. Soon, the girl with the sais was the only one left, though badly wounded.
"This is OUR domain," Saphire said ferally.
One minute till complete control... that was a sweet sounding phrase...
Sirens started to wail and Saphire and Kuru stopped their attack.
"What's going on?" Kuru asked.
The girl dropped her sais and started to run, her form fading away as she ran until she disappeared entirely.
"No!" Kemnee yelled as he jumped overhead and blocked a pair of blades.
"You..." Saphire said as she threw her sword to where the wielder of the blades would land.
Forte hit the blades away and made a slash towards Kemnee's head, his other blade going for Kemnee's waist.
"I'm glad it took you this long to find me," Forte said as Kemnee blocked the first strike and narrowly missed the second. "I like eating, don't you?"
Saphire started to run towards the fight, but she stopped, feeling something tugging her away.
"Saphire!" Kemnee yelled as he tried to trip Forte. "You'll be out of here soon! Don't worry about me!"
Total control... This might come in handy.
Saphire used her administrative rights to widen the fighting area and focused on Kemnee's data signature. "Don't die, okay? We'd be kinda sad," she said mentally as she gave him control of the system in the area. "When did I become such a sap?" she thought as her's and Kuru's form slowly faded away.
"I'll try!" Kemnee yelled as he jumped to the side to avoid another hit.
"We've switched him to full functionality in the cyber world," Toutikai said as Saphire was staring up at the ceiling of the lab and sitting up.
Kuru watched Kemnee straining against his restraints and Saphire felt her eyes drift towards him as well.
"There's nothing we could do, Kuru."
"Did you...?" Kuru began.
"Yeah. He's got all the power I can give him, I'm afraid," Saphire said as Kemnee yelped in pain.
"We're uploading some data into Kemnee to see if we can save him," Toutikai said. "The data is powerful, so we don't know if he can handle it."
Saphire snapped her head back to Toutikai. "Wait, what do you mean?"
"If the data is too powerful, he can go berserk," Toutikai said, a small hint of sadness entering his voice and Saphire nodded grimly.
"Health status is low," one of the other techies said slowly. "He might not make it."
Kemnee's body relaxed as he lay there on the lab table and he grinned.
"His health is rising?" another techie said as he looked at Toutikai inquiringly.
"The data provides auto-regeneration!" Toutikai exclaimed. "He's accepted the data!" Toutikai's jaw dropped as he watched the fight between Forte and Kemnee. "Saphire, you should watch this! Kemnee's totally beating Forte up!"
Saphire and Kuru walked over and watched the fight. Forte wasn't able to make a single attack during the whole time until Forte disappeared and Toutikai interlocked his hands behind his head, a large smile on his face. Saphire mentally sighed.
"I'm glad he's all right."
"All right! You can take the data back out now," Toutikai said and a techie pressed a button.
The techie waited for a while before asking, "What's going on?"
"Aw, come on, Kemnee!" Toutikai yelled. "Reject the data!"
"Or not..." Saphire said sadly.
Kemnee ran out of the view of the screen, making the techie press a button to focus on Kemnee. "I think he's gone berserk..."
Saphire opened her mouth to say something but the door to the room was flung open, startling everyone inside.
"Great..." Saphire pinged as Ike stood in the doorway.
"Lord Ike!" Toutikai exclaimed.
"Kemnee's gone?" Ike said accusingly.
"Yes, sir," Toutikai said as he looked away.
Ike sighed. "Whatever. He may be gone somewhat, but we need Shouji."
"He's gone?" Toutikai asked as the other techies started to mutter to each other.
Ike nodded and turned towards Saphire and Kuru, clutching his sword tightly.
"What does he want?" Saphire said, fighting to keep her temper under control.
"Bravo on hacking into our network. It took a while for us to find out that you were hacking us." He walked closer, his boots thudding heavily on the floor. Absently, Saphire fingered her saber's hilt. "You have good combat skills as well." Ike grinned. "You have the potential to be a great Assassin Hunter. So, here's your first mission. Shouji's gone. As a matter of fact..." He paused, giving them a cruel look.
"Sooo totally not helping!" Saphire pinged as she struggled harder to keep her temper under control.
"He's in the same building that you worked in. He's a janitor and is seen wearing white clothing and glasses." Ike turned with a flourish. "I'll give you his full appearance later. For now, get some rest. Toutikai will lead you to your room."
He slammed the door and Toutikai shakily offered his hand. "I'm Toutikai. How do you do?"
Saphire looked at his hand, then at him, and shook his hand. "I am well. Pleasure to meet you," she said and pinged, "Not, but I guess I'll have to deal with that, won't I?"
"Probably. He is the techie for us," Kuru pointed out.
"True," Saphire pinged back and said, "This is Kuru and I'm Saphire."
"Hey there!... So, Kemnee might not come back?" Kuru asked. "Sis?"
"Not enough time. He was defenseless." Saphire silently berated herself for not guessing something like this would happen... "I guess it's my fault, partially that he went berserk," she thought sadly. "I should have done something about it..."
Toutikai shook his head. "He may not come back. He's trapped in our system and we've locked all of the escape routes, so he should stay in the virtual world."
"Guess we're headed back to Regulator HQ," Saphire said as Toutikai took a deep breath.
"Problem is, is that if we let him back into our world, he could tear us apart. He could be trapped inside until we can force him to give up the program or he... gets killed... if he stays too long."
Saphire flinched, but not really noticeably. "Please, Kemnee," she thought.
"I remember seeing a few janitors there. 'Ny hint which one we're going to look for?" Kuru said.
"'fraid not," Saphire replied. As always, their conversations took only a few seconds. "But there couldn't have been too many who wore white."