038 Acceptance

Guess who’s sleeping on the couch tonight.

“I’m usually not this hostile, I promise,” Gladys reassured. Pivot was helping move Collet’s stuff into her room, while moving her charging equipment out, giving Collet and Gladys a bit of time to converse. “Today was just kind of stressful…”

“I agree…” Collet looked down a bit, before mustering the courage to ask. “What was it like?” Collet asked. “Your family, I mean. And having a brother like that?”

Gladys shuffled in her seat. It was getting late. “Well, there were a lot of us… Dagonians kind of group up for security, at least in the ocean. I lived in the reef with a big extended family. Thrash and I aren’t even related, though. He was just passing through when I met him, I was only 4 at the time.

“Kaiju spawns started moving closer and closer to our development, until one day they got aggressive and decided to attack us. I wound up fleeing in fear and hiding. One of the spawn was trying to chase me down, and right before it found me, Thrash appeared and was able to bring it down. He was determined to find me and bring me back.”

“Kaijus…?” Collet’s ear perked up.

Gladys nodded. “They’re technically just animals, but they’re really big when adults. There’s no way to tell if they’re really old or if they evolved recently. The ones that attacked us were young and small enough to go to shallower waters, or attack other aquatic societies. The bigger ones normally stay in the deep ocean, though rarely they try to come up to land, only to get pushed back by modern society.

“After they attacked us though, we had to move again. A few family members had been critically injured… Thrash had planned to keep fleeing closer to land on his own, but ever since rescuing me he stuck with our family and was adopted in. I’m pretty close too all my siblings, but Thrash and I were closest. Our cast eventually moved closer to the bay, where it’s safer. It was Thrash’s idea to come to the surface and start a salvage business where it’d be safer, so naturally I joined him, and my younger brother followed a year later.”

“I see…” Collet had taken a seat in a nearby chair. She looked down, hands folded, the surface of her prosthetic warmed against her palm.

“I get the feeling you don’t look up to your brother all that much, yourself.”

Collet fidgeted a bit. “I didn’t ever want to look up to him. I’ve just been afraid of what will happen if he finds out I feel that way.”

“Did he ever hurt you?” Gladys asked, a little blunt. Collet didn’t respond for a while, eventually only giving a slight nod.

Her voice was quiet. “He blamed me for what happened to Mom… She died after I was born. And after Dad was arrested, Adrian made sure I knew how much it was my fault.”

“It’s not,” Gladys interjected. “Don’t believe it for a second.”

“I know.” Collet sighed. “I’m still kinda realizing that… I need to keep hearing it. And I still feel like things would have turned out different if she were around…”

Pivot was standing by the door. Her station was plugged into a nearby outlet. There was no telling how long she had been there, listening. “The room’s ready.”

Collet perked up. “Oh… thanks. Are you sure it’s okay…?”

“Don’t worry about it,” Pivot assured her. “As long as I can charge I can sleep pretty much anywhere, if it counts as sleep anyway. Comfort means nothing to me.”

“Plus I’d rather someone who actually pays their rent on time get the second bedroom,” Gladys muttered, partially joking, partially wanting to strangle a robot. “Anyway… I’m going to bed. I’ve got work tomorrow.”

“Yeah… same here,” Collet responded. “Night.”

“Night you two,” Pivot said. Collet and Gladys went into their respective rooms. Pivot flopped onto the sofa face-first and plugged herself in.


2 thoughts on “038 Acceptance”

  1. Anonymous says:

    picking favorites already

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