Chapter 4:

Walk Around Town


Nuts and Cheese having left the café, I decide to close it awhile. Leaving the matter of finding a musician for later, I want to go for a walk around town. Indeed, though I got by with the memories of Pawn, it would do good for me to gather some more information.

As far as I'm concerned, the idea of a Praline Kingdom is still a bit fuzzy, with the cliché of a fantasy land populated by gigantic sweets growing like trees, as if the place where a fairy tale is to take place...

As I open Pawn's Café's door for the first time, the sight I behold is impressive, alright. This must be the town center, as buildings in red and pink bricks stand, their tiled roofs two stories above. There are shops, as I am met with shop windows, exposing goods I doubt humans from my past world would come to need so much.

The first shop I see sells combs for different types of animal hairs. At first, I am troubled with the writing system in Praline Kingdom, especially as it is dusk. Thanks to Pawn's ability to read, however, I can gradually make out some of the forms, unless I realize the name of the shop reads Griffures.

There aren't a lot of people out there, as night is falling. As I spend some time looking at the silhouettes of the inhabitants of the Praline Kingdom, I ponder. Those animal folks belong to very diverse species, that often prey on each other... How could they possibly come together under the same banner?

And more importantly—at least to me. They're all hybrids with traits of humanity?! And not a single pure human is to be seen. While it looks like a cosmopolitical haven, I'd like to meet some of my peers... Or, former peers.

Something else strikes me as touching. A girl walking a few meters away has bat wings, so it doesn't take me much to guess at her species. She has her eyes downcast, buried under blue bangs of hair, as if she were saddened. It may be a little early for her to be around, I guess, as some bats are nocturnal species? Would it be rude for a stranger to come forth, and to ask her if she is doing alright? Watching her, I don't get the emotional impulse that I felt previously, when looking at Juice and Scurry. This must be the difference between girls Pawn is intimate with, and the ones she isn't.

Actually, are there males to be found in this town? I've only ever seen girls?! Which isn't that big of a deal, considering it's another world. Might even still be the confines of my dreams, though I doubt this possibility more and more. And, as I went on to think on my own, the sad bat continues on her way, as the twilight basks us in a scene filled with the melancholy of loneliness.