After the remarkable amounts of support I've received over the course of this story, I decided that I should offer all of you this continuation. I was thinking of making this as a bonus chapter to Monstrous Occurrences, but I quickly had other ideas and now it's going to run as a part II of the story, continuing under the name "Pandoran Nights". Look it up, my faithful readers!
"All shall taste the sweet clumsiness of my aardvark's jaunty tune!" Krieg shouted at the top of his lungs, buzz axe in hand as he chased down a small skag with a saw blade around its neck.
"Now don't you hurt Scrappy Jr. or I'll stop sellin' you junk!" Crazy Earl shouted from behind his locked door.
"But... The jaunty tune... It needs the scarlet rain and snide pulp to sound sweet~!" Krieg replied, turning to the arguably equally as insane man with a pained look in his one visible eye.
"Do as he said, psycho, or I'm not making you a burger!" Maya called from a short ways down the street. Krieg slumped his shoulders before grumbling and walking after her, Scrappy Jr. quietly following Krieg as he joined up with the others inside the fast travel hut. It had been filled with a rather large table and one of the walls had been knocked out to make room for the table as it continued on into the center of Sanctuary, the table made up of digistruct particles meshing together into a leaf-weave texture and a flat surface.
Roland was seated alongside Lilith at the head of the table inside the hut with Mordecai and Brick at either side of them. Moxxi sat at Mordecai's side and Tina at Brick's. Zed and Tannis sat beside one another, slinging insults and complements alike to one another as they practically ignored the others, an event beneficial to the rest of the table as Tannis' company induced anxiety had not triggered. Angel and Zero sat above all the others, atop the hut, sitting in relative silence as Zero meditated and Angel sat quietly beside him, smiling happily as she looked down at the others. Axton and Gaige sat beside one another across from Zed and Tannis, talking with Salvador and Ellie about some of the old stories they had. Hammerlock stood at the side of the table, enjoying some conversation with Roland and observing Bloodwing Jr. Scooter sat across from Salvador and Claptrap periodically wheeled his way under the table, greatly annoying the others as he played with Scrappy Jr. and was periodically dive-bombed by Bloodwing Jr., making the others laugh at his shrill screams of fear. Finally, at the farthest end of the table sat Maya and an extra seat at her side for Krieg as he walked up to the table. Immense assortments of food varying from delectable crumpets for the wild-child beside the berserker to grand and beautifully cooked slabs of meat for the psycho and gunzerker to feast upon with everything in between could be found upon or around the table. Moxxi had even contributed some of her own cooking into the feast, a few well-made pizzas stacked at the side of the table in boxes and several bottles of booze accompanied the decadent meal.
"Well, everyone, it's been a long time since we've all been together like this. How's everyone doing?" Maya asked, interlocking her hand with Krieg's when he sat down.
"Roland and I have been working to decipher the vault key's map a bit more before sending Brick and Mordecai off hunting." Lilith replied.
"And that's been hell, I'll tell you what. Every night listenin' to this big oaf's snoring? Damn near lost my mind." Mordecai said, rubbing under his eyes as he pulled up his goggles. "But at least I've got something nice to come back to." He said, removing his gloves and picking up a burger.
"Yeah, but that last trip was pretty fun, you have to admit!" Brick chimed in.
"Yeah, yeah. Killin' a carnivorous land octopus from the inside out was good and all, but the Vault turned out to be a bust. Hey, wait... Ain't Zero here an Eridian? Why don't he know where the Vaults are?" Mordecai asked.
"I'm sorry to say/ The knowledge was not passed down/ Despite time's passing." Zero commented.
"So... What? They all just decided to take the secrets to the grave?" Brick asked.
"I assume so." He replied calmly.
"That... That actually makes sense. If you want to erase something from history, make sure there's no one alive to talk about it." Roland said, thinking to himself for a moment.
"Ah, well, not like it makes a difference, really." Mordecai said, taking a swig of rakk ale to wash down his mouthful. Moxxi saw this and rubbed his shoulder softly.
"Take it easy on those, Sugar, remember what we agreed on~" she said to him, making him put the bottle down after his last swallow.
"Yeah, yeah." He said, sighing audibly.
"Wow, she's got you whipped, eh, Mordy?" Brick commented, causing the others to all laugh and Mordecai to shout back in annoyance.
"I ain't whipped!" he shouted.
"Whatever you say." Brick replied, chuckling. Mordecai grumbled and settled lower in his chair as Moxxi continued rubbing his shoulder to calm him down.
"Ever since you two lovebirds headed out to Thousand Cuts, we haven't heard much from you. What have you and your big ol' Psycho been up to, Sugar?" Moxxi asked, looking over to Maya.
"The pied piper and all his adoring bottle monkeys have reamed out the solace in the brim of my ventilator egg salad!" Krieg immediately shouted, slamming his free hand down on the table, causing a metallic clang as the gauntlet-like device impacted with the digistructed surface.
"Uh... Wha-ha-hat?" Lilith asked, giggling as she spoke, the others all laughing as well. Though only Maya would admit to it, Krieg's nonsensical drabbles were amusing and even missed.
"He means that we had fun cleaning out a nice little place for ourselves atop Terramorphorous Peak once his carcass was cleared out of the way." Maya said, clearing up what Krieg had spouted.
"Ah! Yes, I recall you stating that Krieg had formed some sort of structure out of the Thresher's remains!" Hammerlock said immediately after.
"Yeah, we used the solid parts of his skeleton as part of our home, actually. Took a couple months for all the fleshy parts to decompose." Maya replied.
"That's what I smelled!?" Brick shouted, looking at them. When Maya simply nodded, he grumbled, crossing his arms rather childishly. "...Couldn't even go back to my throne because of you slabs..." he muttered, causing Tina to laugh.
"You know, this is nice, if hectic as ever..." Lilith said with a soft smirk on her face.
"You know it, Mah Ho!" Tina replied.
"RRRRRRRAAAAAH! ENOUGH FACE SOUNDS! BOILING GARGOILS MUST BE DEGRADED!" Krieg shouted, his eye twitching as all this food remained on the table, uneaten.
"Did he just...?" Brick asked, completely lost.
"No, he said that we should all shut up and dig in." Maya said, using her thumb to run along the top of his bandaged hand. Krieg's visible eye tightened softly, showing her that he was smiling beneath his mask.
These distant memories flowed through my fractured mind nonstop and all I had to remember them by was a single strand of blue hair that I keep in a small vial around my neck.
"My meat maiden..." he said solemnly, looking down at the pendant of her hair dangling from our thick neck.
(I know, pal. I miss her too. We will find her again, I promise.) I said to him softly. His bandaged hand reached up, releasing its grip on his Carnage Shotgun's trigger and gently held the small vial of diamond and gold at his neck. (We have to keep looking for a way back. Even with them looking for us, it won't be enough without us looking for them too.) I told him in a quiet tone. He nodded, letting go of the necklace and continuing on into the endless wastelands that outstretched before us.