Chapter 184:

The Hospital Quiet Moment

The Nonpareil of Resh (Act 1)

After meeting with Gwyn, Mayor Abelard went to see the comatose Dia. Much to the dismay of both Rom and Amber, who were set on guarding him, the mayor asked them to remain outside the door. Rheba and Harlan found themselves in a tiny lobby where they contemplated while waiting. The giant warrior took a relaxed seated position and focused on her breath while Harlan studied a map of the large hospital situated in the space.

In Dia’s room, the mayor sighed as he sat next to the unconscience winged Aqueenian.

“Didn’t I tell you not to get involved with the wrong crowd…” he muttered to the sleeping girl. “If Heloise was still with us… well, she would have harsh words to say to you.” The Netzian mayor let his sentence fade to a whisper as his wife's name was mentioned. It had been she who convinced him one rainy day to save a helpless, cursed Aqueenian child on the street.

Abelard gently moved Dia’s white hair, so it was more neatly ordered; the hospital had not bothered to keep it well arranged when they worked to stabilize her. ‘A beauideal should always look their best, even when asleep,’ she had told him time and time again.

“We are a little delayed in getting the Needaimus we need; just hold out a little longer.” The mayor said as he finished moving Dia’s white hair. It wasn’t as neat as it would have been if she had brushed it herself, but it looked presentable. The Netzian mayor gently kissed her green forehead before standing up and moving his hands down his smooth suit like there were wrinkles that ought to be ironed out. Abelard turned to X, who silently sat on a shelf nearby, and shook his head. “She never does listen to either of us, does she?” he asked before leaving. The Needaimus nodded in agreement.

In the lobby, Harlan’s eyes darted around the map. It was hardly interesting, but she needed something to pass the time. Try as she might, she couldn’t help but wonder about what had happened. Dia had been taken out by another foe. Harlan had assumed they were unified with the beauideal, and she never would have expected such betrayal. She couldn’t help but wonder if she had made a mistake in the last battle.

After using her ability, the modified subject required a long period before the ability would work again. She had hoped taking out Dia would get them the information they needed, but she feared she wasted her secret move too soon. It would be months before she could use the ultimate form again.

The Zenotote scientist looked to Rheba, but the Bentulousian warrior was already deep in meditation. She rolled her green eyes; the practices were another divide between the two species that Harlan didn’t know what to do with.

In his room, Gwyn sat sullenly in the bed. His head was looking down at his legs, and he couldn’t shape his mouth in any other way than a frown. Mem had tried to cheer the Nonpareil up several times, but he wasn’t listening.

Instead, Gwyn’s mind was focused on back home. His family he hadn’t seen for a while, the friends he would never be able to reconnect with, the life that was gone. He thought about it deeply for the first time since coming to Resh. Though he tried to ignore the feelings when they arrived, his major loss had shaken him enough to contemplate.

Gwyn didn’t know what to do or how to feel. He was starting to feel excitement for his journey in another world, and everything had come crashing down. He wanted to figure out how to get back to earth, but he didn’t even understand how he got to Resh in the first place. The memory had become hazy, which he attributed to multiple impacts he had endured between the car crash and Nighthawks attack.

He shook his head and scratched furiously at his hard shoulder. There was little he could do, and he didn’t know which way was right.

The Nonpareil might have spent the whole day in thought, but he was soon interrupted. A loud explosion tore through a far-off wing in the hospital. All in the various rooms and lobbies were suddenly alert, and bells began to go off. In a new hole along one of the walls, A force of many bandits led by Ripple and Nighthawk entered.

“Where is the mayor?” The orange Zenotote grunted to a passing and fearful doctor. He pointed in the direction that the staff had heard Abelard was visiting. The invading force began to make their way down the halls of the hospital, with the elimination of Mayor Abelard in their minds.