Disclaimer: Oddworld and all its characters belong to Oddworld Inhabitants. I'm just borrowing some characters and making a few of my own and all that. Silox, which you will meet later, are my creation, however.
A/N: It's highly recommended that you read Vula's Oddysee and Gabby's Song before you start this one. The chapters should be a bit longer than my others (at least I hope they are). This story will contain gobs of violence, language, and whatnot throughout. There will be very, very slight innuendo in this chapter, but it's not until near the end and is written so that it shouldn't offend anyone. And if it does... kindly put a sock in it!
I want to give a quick shoutout to Mable, who actually spawned the IDEA for the entire story by something she said. I won't say what exactly, but I want to thank you for giving me the idea anyway! O: 3 She's also the one who has been nice enough to review my chapters so far and I think you VERY MUCH FOR THAT. Seriously. There were a few times I almost decided to stop writing. Huh huh. Anyway, I'm sure you're sick of this.
Onto chaptuh one!!
The Battle For Mudos
BOOK ONE: Static
CHAPTER ONE: Unbalance
Ten years have passed since Vula went to search for a new queen; since a female Gabbit was found in Ma'Spa; since a strange creature was dumped into the hands of a pair of Vykkers; since a Glukkon sought out his own past to change his future. Ten long years of a constantly brewing and building storm. Both sides prepare for a terrible and unavoidable war, one that will decide the fate of all Mudos. Yet the lines of good and evil are not necessarily clear; because in the end, "we must all look within if we want to be free." Angel
It was before sunrise, a time where the earth and the infinite sky contrasted themselves in a battle of light and dark. The earth and all visible surface was black. In the distant, eastern horizon, the black faded slightly as the sun dared to approach the horizon line. It was not visible, but its light filtered through the blackness of the earth and lightly touched upon the mountains. The sky itself was opposite - a blaze of blues and orange. Towards the zenith, the sky had yet to lose its midnight-blue. However, further out, the sky grew lighter, until it shone as bright as it did in daytime. Darker clouds peppered the sky in little blobs, their undersides glowing red with the sun's intense light. Further in the distance, the clouds seemed to mass together into a glowing carpet of red and gray-blue. As the sun dared to inch higher, higher points of land began to glow red-orange. Tall pines were illuminated, each needle basking in the light.
In the distance, a line of silhouettes seemed to sneak along the base of a hill, keeping well hidden where the shadows were thickest. Behind them was a small, noisy cart led by a pair of shuffling Elum. The silhouettes slowed, hidden by the pine trees. There were six of them, minus the Elum, and each was whispering to one another urgently. Some were a good deal shorter than others, but all of them were dark cloaks that only covered their top half.
The leader spoke. He was taller than the others, although not by much. He lowered his head a little, hissing to the others.
"A'right," he said quickly. "We only have a chance ta do this once. So let's get it done."
One of the shorter ones scoffed, an odd, red light coming from the inside of its mask. He didn't seem used to whispering.
"Tch. We've done all this b'fore. Simple exercise. So lead the way, cap'n."
The leader snorted, but stood up straighter and peered around one of the pines. Built into the side of a hill was what resembled the entrance to a bunker. It was constructed of gray stone, and the opening was small. The shorter one from before peered underneath the leader.
"Ya said this place was uh.. inhabited di'n't yer?" he hissed.
The leader nodded.
"'Course I did, they're inside, shorty. Now get back. Ya know what to do."
The shorter one did as he was instructed and backed up. Suddenly his demeanor changed. He backed up a little and picked up a rifle, which had been hidden at his side. He raised it up so it was parallel to his head, and raised his other hand, gesturing with hand signals. One follower, as though practiced, got behind him quickly. Another hand signal and a second follower moved outward, further away from the group, low to the ground, in a semicircle towards the bunker. A third signal, and the third along in much the same fashion - but in the opposite direction.
The last one, a creature slightly larger than the one giving signals, crept up alongside the first. The leader glanced at them, then waited several moments. A beep came from his hip, and the leader picked up the small radio and listened.
"Quarky, in position. Over.," whispered the crackled voice. Then.
"Yhalo2, in position. Over."
"Vendo, in position sir. Over."
The leader grinned, and pressed the button, speaking into it.
"Good. See anything? Over."
"Not a thing sir." came the reply. "Place looks dead. Over."
"Right then," said the leader. "Move. Over and out."
The radio shut off. The leader stepped behind the two shorter, who apparently seemed to both have weapons, and let them go first. The short ones moved in, weapons at the ready, halting on either side of the entrance. There was a nod between them. Suddenly the two burst through the doorway, weapons first. Behind them came Varg, holding a torch.
"A'right, don't anyone move!" one of them snarled, peering through the darkness.
There were only two sligs. One was sleeping at the table while the other was only half awake. He stared blankly into the light.
"What the hell d' ye want?" one asked, covering up one red eye. "And who're yas?"
The two in the doorway might've grinned. Or maybe they didn't.
"Just yer wake up call!"
In a moment the two sligs were completely outnumbered and surrounded, then dragged out into the open. Both protested, although held at gunpoint, there was nothing they could do.
"So," said the leader, arms folded over his well-hidden chest. "What's been up with you guys lately. Haven't heard much from the... Industrialists."
The two sligs glanced at one another.
"Uh.. whaddaya mean? We's just normal security.. we dunno nothin' about that. 'Less Jerry here knows somethin."
The slig known as Jeffrey perked up.
"I dunno nothin' either, don't pin this on me!"
One of the cloaked creatures stepped forward, gun barrel pressing right up against the slig's head.
"I suggest yer get talkin, slig, 'r else I'm gonna have ta shoot yers."
The slig peered into the red glow of the hood, eyes wide.
"But yer one o--" The slig was cut off immediately, as the gun was drawn back and the butt of the rifle cracked over his head. The slig yelped, dropped down, hydraulic pants hissing as he clutched his now-bruised head.
"A'right!" the other slig jumped up immediately. "We was sent out here to guard this here bunker 'cause there was rumors you Radicals was sneakin' around out here!"
The leader snorted, "Oh really? That all?"
"Yeah.. I dunno anythin' else! Honest!"
The slig that had been injured hadn't moved.
"So whatcha guardin'?" asked the one above him, the one who had hit him.
"I CAN'T HEAR YERS!" The other snarled, butt of the gun colliding again with his head.
The slig yelped louder.
"I said ..we're guarding supplies.. and some weapons.. nothing else."
The other didn't seem impressed.
"Why they holdin' shit out here for?"
There was silence. The butt of the gun crashed once more over the slig's head, and the other spoke for him.
"The economy's gettin bad and we knew youse radicals'd be out here trying ta steal food. This food was originally meant for any Gluk's wantin' ta hide out here. That's all we know! Now let us go!"
The leader eventually turned his back. He thought hard for several moments, digesting the informative juices. A slight breeze picked up and the sun began to rear its great golden head over the horizon. He had to make his decision.
"Kill them," said the leader. "And let's get out of here."
The two armed, cloaked ones did grin inside the hoods this time, before aiming and firing. The volley of bullets hit two silent targets. Blood was spilt that early morning. But the group was not unnerved. In fact, this seemed like a daily chore to them. The group moved single file inside the bunker, bringing out food and other supplies. They loaded it onto the empty Elum cart, and, piling onto it themselves, headed away before the sun had climbed over the top of the mountains.
We must journey far, far from the terrible murders of that morning, to a place overseas. A place where no slig would dare trod unless assigned to work there. We must travel to the slig hatchery. Built much like a factory, this slig hatchery was less foreboding than a typical glukkon factory. In fact, it merely looked like a vast complex. However, upon closer inspection, it seemed as though something terrible lurked within its bowels. Located on a great, wide plain, it could be easily spotted for miles.
What lived and lurked inside the great factory was not a glukkon. To sligs, she was far more frightening than any glukkon could ever hope to be. She was their terrible godhead of a mother. Her name was Skillya, and the almighty queen slig seemed suspended over a mighty cauldron. Her abdomen was curved greatly, and suspended by a harness of sorts that held her against the large arch. At the end of her abdomen, a pair of sligs waited, hiding their grimaces from one another as well as from Skillya. They were waiting for an egg, a cushion-lined cart between them. Her head and thorax, if it could be called that, was small compared to the rest of her.
In the head and face, Skillya resembled a slig. However, she was maskless, and much older-looking. Years of age and stress was obvious in her face, which seemed to droop and hold in it a terror no slig was willing to face without pay. The jointless tentacles in her face were large and long, drooping a good deal further than her offspring's. Her head and body were covered with dark splotches, and as though to compare her massive size, a lone slig scrubbed her with a sponge connected to a long broomstick. He would stop, dip the sponge in water, and continue. Skillya took no notice, long, spindly fingers wrapped around a large, metal spoon.
Skillya appeared deep in thought. Her thick brows furrowed as she frowned into the soup, steam clouding up and cleansing whatever it was she had for facial pores. She great, black eyes shone with distaste as she dipped a finger into the soup. She raised it to her jaw, hidden under the massive tentacles, and tasted the soup.
There was an exhale, and another moment of silence, before Skilla licked her lips and shook her head. Then Skillya shivered. The typical pain in her abdomen returned. She hissed, body wracked with pain. Right on schedule. The egg passed, easing its way out of her before landing on the cart. The hot egg was then looked over by the sligs. They didn't dare touch it. It was slimy, semi-soft, and covered with some brownish liquid that smelled odd. They merely pushed the cart off and were gone. Skillya breathed a sigh of relief. Long ago were the days when she felt ashamed of exposing herself, of dropping eggs like hourly bowel movements in front of her own.
Like all queens, she was a slave to profit. In a way, there was a small amount of empathy shared between each of them. From the Glukkon queens to the Mudokon queen, to even herself. While none of them got along, each knew they were nothing more than slaves themselves. But each had their place. Mudokons were slaves, the lowest ranking indeed. Sligs were service drones, but a bit more fortunate than the Muds. Glukkons controlled everything. At least, that was as far up as the known chain went. In reality, the chain went even higher, further beyond even Skillya could comprehend.
The room she was in was vast, but there were several windows above that allowed light to enter. They could be covered when she no longer wished for it. Oh, but there was always her days when she wished for light. She wanted to be out there. In the sun, in the rain - it didn't matter. Maybe even go shoot a few runaway slaves with her offspring. But her offspring. The little runts were nothing more than nuisances, bringing her terrible pain and rage and the unfortunate sliglet was often eaten in her wrath. The windows were open and sun shone brightly upon her features, basking her in warmth and filling her with her typical rage.
It was that moment that a tiny light flashed in the corner of her eye. A slig entered the room, clearing his throat as he came. He looked rather different from the other sligs, if only slightly. In build, he was larger, his tentacles longer and thicker, and his mask and pants were much different. While they looked similar, they were made of better material. The slig was a drone - a male drone, and he had a look about him that suggested he be treated with respect.
"What is it?" Skillya asked, irritation mounting in her. She gripped her spoon tightly.
The slig spoke slowly, "Ya got a messenger, ma'am."
Skillya rolled her eyes. "Is it important?"
"OH yes," the slig assured her. "Definitely. You'll wanna listen to 'im I think."
"Fine, fine... Just send him in." She wanted to get back to her soup, and to her bath.
The male slig left the room, and moments later a much smaller, younger, genderless worker class slig replaced him. The slig looked downright terrified, his rifle removed from his person and any form confidence drowned out by the other sligs in the room - most of them male drones. Each of them eyed him with a look that suggested little more than indifference, but the slig knew he could've been trounced in a second by these more masculine creatures. But Skillya terrified him most of all. Skillya could, with a single look, have him killed, or even worse.
"Well?" Skillya sneered, stirring her soup. "Spit it out, slig."
The slig swallowed. Never before had he to face the queen, but he knew there was no choice.
"M'lady, I'm sure yer aware of the uh, droppin' population?" He had to be careful of his choice of words; Skillya tended to act out in anger.
Skillya sniffed. "Of course I know. I've been doubling my laying just to keep up! Have you any right to remind me?!"
The slig cringed. "Uh, n-no ma'm. I'm only here to tell you that it's gotten worse. Sligs are droppin' left and right... the Radical party's gettin' more violent with their demands an' all.."
Skillya snapped at him.
"Wonderful! I'll just lay MORE eggs then! Be thankful, you little slave, you'll never know what it's like!" Then she fell silent. Finally, her voice calmed, sweetness tinged with a bitter chill. "I apologize... my anger is preceeding me.. do come a little closer so I can... apologize."
The slig's eyes went wide behind his mask. He stepped forward, hydraulics causing the usual wheeze and hiss of each step. But this time they were like roaring, screaming, in his ears and he wanted to turn and run, run far away from the terror he could only call his mother. As he edged closer, he noticed the intense size difference between himself and Skillya. Skillya made three of him in size in just her head and torso alone. The rest... he probably could've fit fifty of himself inside of her. Not that he'd ever want to try that.
As he edged closer, Skillya was no longer watching him. She was studying her soup.
"I was hoping for your assistance, slig," said Skillya. "My soup has been a bit ... empty these past few days. Perhaps you can tell me what it needs."
The slig was not necessarily smart, but his instincts kicked in and a cold sweat erupted over him. His stomach soured and his heart pounded as he stepped closer and closer to the giant female slig.
Skillya's arm snaked towards him, wrenching the struggling slig from the ground and ripping his pants away from him. The slig yelped, body much too weak to fight. She slung the poor slig into her boiling soup, tossed his pants aside, and stirred the soup. The slig emerged, choking, howling, screaming in a way that no slig should ever scream. His body was covered in dark green, blistering burns, many of them reopening as he was pushed deeper into the viscous soup. The slig's struggles became weaker, cries twisting into a single moan of agony.
Skillya did not seem to hear him. She stirred continuously, rapid strokes of her spoon throwing the slig about in hotter, deeper soup. The slig would occasionally resurface, moan increased until he eventually fell silent. Skillya pressed him to the bottom of the cauldron and smashed his body with the spoon, feeling it give until her spoon hit the bottom. Very good, very good. Moments passed. She reached a finger into the soup and tasted.
"Just as I thought... needed more body."
The other sligs backed away from her. Even the slig that had been bathing her was now using her large body as a shield. Each slig in the room had been wholly disturbed by the incident. While many were used to it, it was something that unnerved them, hearing their own kind slowly tortured and they weren't doing it.
Skillya snapped back to her senses. She pointed at the slig who had been bathing her. "You! Come here!"
The slig stopped and approached her front, trembling.
"I want you to take this message to Pox. Tell him I will comply with his wishes, as he no-doubt expects. But I want you to tell him I'll do so provided I get more funding for my soup. I want a ten percent increase. This will appease me. Now get out of here before I decide to cook you as well!"
"Right away, ma'am!" The slig didn't need a second warning. He turned tail and fled. The other sligs eyed him enviously.
Pox frowned as he watched the charts on the large screen. This was not the first time the Glukkon had seen these readings. The line graph had been falling, and it terrified him. He stole a glance to the slig holding the remote control, showing and explaining everything to him. Why prices had gone up, why stocks had gone down, why slig lease prices were rising. Pox had heard it all. He flexed his lip, the expensive cigar rolling between them, locked between sections of teeth.
"So yer see boss," finished the slig. "I'm sure yer 've heard all this before." The slig, too, seemed a bit bored with this.
Pox exhaled slowly, tongue pressed against the roof of his mouth. He peeled it off quickly, then pressed it against it again. Because Glukkons have suction cups on their tongue, he could stick it up to the roof of his mouth, then peel it off with a pop. It was a habit he'd developed early on in the university to cope with stress. Apparently it had helped. But with all his experience, promoted to CEO had apparently done nothing to help his reputation. What had to be done to save the economy was on his shoulders. Completely. And Pox knew it. The CEOs before him had all failed.
Pox turned to face the others in the room, a row of Glukkons - and a single Vykker, each on floating podiums in the center of the round room. Each was clothed in a differenct color robe. Some had gray skin, others brown. Some pins were lower on the suit, others were nearly as high as his own. Pox frowned at them. Their frowns were just as sour. While Pox was of higher rank, he was also nearly half their age and experience. However, Pox had moved up in rank almost completely by himself and held his own well amongst the intimidating Cartel.
"So," one of the Gluks said through clenched jaws. "What's yer plan, boss?" The word boss, Pox noted, was emphasized and lacked any respect it should've been given.
Pox straightened himself, fingers wriggling in his shoes, and held himself high.
"Well," he said slowly, careful not to drop his cigar. Speaking fast and holding a cigar in your mouth took a good bit of skill, and it was one he hadn't mastered yet. "I'm still thinkin'."
The Glukkon grimaced.
"Yer been thinkin' for two Odd-damn weeks - would ya just come up with somethin'?"
It was a bluff and an accusation. Pox knew it immediately and his expression remained unchanged.
"Of course, I'll just come up with somethin' like every other moron in this place has done. I'll come up with somethin' fast, and we'll all fold into nothin'." Pox felt his energy rising and the Glukkon who had spoken clammed up immediately. "I think it's best to take a little time, ya know? That way," he finished with a grin, "We can get this economy running again."
The Glukkon fell silent and Pox turned to the lone Vykker, who was tapping a stubby foot impatiently. Pox didn't show the discomfort on his face. Vykkers were scary enough to bother even the most collected Glukkon.
"Ya got anything t' add?" asked Pox almost grudgingly. The particular Vykker had been a thorn in his side for weeks, pushing the strangest of policies onto Glukkons that had nothing whatsoever to do with them. Several of these had made their way to Lady Margaret, who had dismissed most of them. But the Vykker was an important representative of his.. ..er.. it's race, so Pox had no choice but to let him stay. Normally, there were other races, but lately only Gluks had been showing up to these board meetings. And Pox was at head head of them.
"Well," hissed the Vykker in its oddly feminine voice, "Since our airborne facility is no longer functioning..." The Vykker paused for a moment before continuing, "Undergound Facility #027 has offered its services to house the next Mudokon queen. It's obvious the Mudokon is the greatest source of labor here."
Silence followed. Ten years ago, not long after Molluck had vanished, a treaty had been forcibly signed between the Industrialists and the Natives. The Natives had agreed to donate a certain amount of Muds for a price. Not only that, they needed to be paid. However, in recent years the amount sent had been steadily decreasing. To make matters worse, the economy was plummeting into a terrible depression. If it didn't slow its spiral soon, everything would fold. Pox knew that the Vykker's plan was probably the best one.
Each Glukkon exchanged glances, none wanting to trust the Vykker but realizing there was no choice. Pox realized he'd needed to speak or something, lest the others do so for him.
"Right, then," said Pox, inhaling through clenched jaws. He turned to face the slig holding the remote control, who was looking at him expectantly. "Who motions that we should return the queen to the Vykkers and breech the old contract?"
The Glukkons did not need a second inquiry. Each of them began hooting, hollering, cheering in a way that Pox had never heard them. Sometimes contracts needed to be breeched. Sometimes rules needed to be broken to do what was necessary to fix the economy. Pox sniffed. He felt pleased, even thoguh the idea wasn't his own. It was this feeling of respect and admiration that gave Pox his incentive to continue.
"If all are agreed, then, we'll start a plan immediately. We're done with that ridiculous document!"
The other Glukkons - and lone Vykker, began to cheer audibly.
"We'll get that queen back, even if we have to go in there and wipe those stubborn Natives off the face of Mudos! Now let's get plannin'!"
We must once again travel, further west, not far from where we first began. The sun had long since risen and passed its zenith; afternoon had begun and was beginning to fade slowly into evening. Not much had changed. North of the mountain range, a great river cut through the trees, lazily sprawling out to the sea, miles away to the east. To the south, the mountains continued, sloping gently into the forest, where a great many caves were connected, forming a vast part of a Mudokon Village. The residing Mudokons were almost always busy, heading in and out of these caves and carrying food and other items in.
Deep within the cave was a mazelike network of tunnels known only to the Mudokons. In the center of these tunnels was a great cavern, where there rested a Mudokon of massive scale. The air within the cave was warm and oddly moist, but not unpleasant. The massive Mud had several others around her, some talking to her, others working around her great body and abdomen.
In ten years, Casey had swelled from normal size to her current state - a behemoth of a female Mudokon, with an abdomen several times its normal size. Every two hours, until another queen was produced, she would lay an egg. That egg would be carried off to a nursery, where it would be taken care of until it hatched. And in all those ten years, Casey was still nothing short of a bitch.
"My Odd, this job sucks," she hissed, resting her elbows on the cushion in front of her. She'd just passed an egg, and already it was gone. "You're so... so lucky Vula."
Vula looked a little older, and in ten years, she hadn't changed much besides. She stuck her tongue out at Casey, then returned to the parchment she was holding.
"You know it. Alright.. we've gotten a total of 4383 eggs since you first started layin', Casey," she said, grinning, folding her arms over her chest.
Casey groaned, "Yeah, no shit. Felt every damn' one of 'em too." She rubbed her temples wearily and sighed. "Oh well. A job's a job. Too bad I'm not gettin' paid for this."
Vula stretched, laughing to herself. But Casey's mood turned sour.
"Dammit," Casey snarled, "I want tea. NOW." Her mood, while it was genuine, was not directed at Vula. Vula had learned to brush it off and move on, and Casey understood.
Vula waved absently and walked off, going to go fetch her the requested mug full of tea. What Casey would've taken ovr that was drugs. She hated being Queen, but there was something about her that had matured and she'd become much more patient. Still, there were some days when she was back to her old self. It was understandable, however. Being forced to deliver eggs every day really got to you - especially since it did hurt a bit.
Vula left the network of tunnels and headed out towards the one place she could always go to pick up tea. Alf's Rehab. It had grown a bit but Alf was still his same old, cocky self. However, as she emerged into the sunlight she spotted a very familiar face.
Her old friend was sitting quietly outisde, back resting against a rock. The Mudokon didn't look much different, but there was something much more reserved about his personality. However, upon spotting Vula, he got to his feet, stretched lazily, and waved tiredly to her.
"Where have you been?" asked Vula, raising an eyebrow, not stopping. Varg quickly caught up to her.
"Around," he said. "Loads of work to bedone. The Monsaic Lines are undergoing construction and I've been out there helping them. Other things." He huffed. "I'm a bit tired, but uh. How's things been here?"
Vula rolled her eyes.
"Same, basically. Casey's up to her usual attitude again." Suddenly Vula grinned. "Still like your new job as drone?" There was something playfully sadistic in her smirk, as though she knew some dirty secret.
Varg glared dangerously at her, then rolled his eyes and groaned, "Well. I did the first time... but... then... well. It's a job," he finished, much in the manner of Casey.
Vula knew Varg really liked Casey, although he probably wasn't too keen on doing his "monthly duties" anymore. Still, the two got along well in spite of that rift in their relationship. When the two reached Alf's Rehab and Tea, Vula suddenly stopped.
"I meant to ask," she said. "Have you been by Jarlonia recently?"
Varg blinked, tilting his head at her.
"Eh... not in awhile... why?"
Vula shrugged and said, "Just wondering how Drog and Suzy and that other slig were. Haven't seen them... in years.."
Indeed, Vula had not seen her friends at all since they had last parted ways a decade before. As soon as they returned, her entire world had been filled with prepping the queen and helping to deliver eggs and in the end, she'd become the queen's confidante - her best friend. And now there was no time to see her old friends at all.
"Heh," Varg grunted, "I'm sure they're fine. Haven't seen much of 'em either, myself. Maybe one day you'll see them again."
Vula sighed, shrugging. "Well, I need to get Casey her tea before she tries to crawl out of there and eat me. See ya next time."
Varg waved casually, then the two parted ways.
Not too far away, another old inhabitant lived. This one, however, was aging, and now unable to even rise from his hut. This well respected, old shaman was known in his days as Big Face. Big Face was forty-four years old, a full four years older than the average lifespan of a Mudokon. He was in relatively good health, although he was weak with age. It had yet to break his spirit, however, and he recieved multiple visitors daily. All of them offered him food, gifts, and daily blessings. His current visitor, this evening, was Abe.
Abe had long since ceased many of his adventures and for the first time he could rest again. However, these days had brought upon him an increasing restlessness. The Mudokon, now old enough to comprehend much of his own destiny, thought at last the prophecy involving him was over. He meditated, listening to the teachings of Big Face, who muttered to him.
The curtain parted, and Abe, distracted, looked back towards the door. Recognizing Vula, Abe raised a paw to gesture for her entry. Vula looked left then right, hesitated, then finally stepped inside.
"Well hey," said Abe, grinning as Vula sat down opposite him. "What are ya doin' here?"
Big Face muttered behind his mask. "That Vula? How ya doin'?"
Vula grinned and said, "Yeah.. I'm good. I came for a quick visit... that okay?"
"Fine by me," Abe replied. He didn't seem too bothered and Big Face didn't move, so Vula made herself comfortable.
"What's the problem?" Big Face asked quietly. "You seem troubled."
Vula replied simply, "I just have this weird feeling... like somethin's going on and no one's telling me. I don't know."
Big Face lifted his head slightly.
"When I feel that way, I always meditate. Sometimes I discover profound things, such as Abe's prophecy, and the one impending now."
"Another one?" he asked.
Big Face said, "I don't know it anymore, I'm afraid, but if I'm not mistaken all the signs are beginning to fall into place for it. I could be wrong of course, but it might be best for you to investigate."
Abe sighed almost wearily. Not again. He'd come face to face with many foes, and now he'd have to do it all again. Well, unless Big Face was going senile.
"What signs?" asked Vula suddenly.
Big Face yawned and exhaled, "Not now..I'm tired." He rolled over and fell asleep.
"Cheeky little bastard.. always forcing us to look for things ourselves," she muttered.
"I guess uh, I'm gonna go for awhile. Er.. talk to you later," Abe said simply before leaving Vula by herself.
Vula stepped out of the hut. She had been feeling very odd lately. This odd feeling had come over her. It was a mix of feeling incomplete, and feeling part of something bigger at the same time. She was detached from something and it made her uncomfortable. Staring into the setting sun, Vula walked away, frowning at her sudden, heavy heart.