22 Jul Chapter 35: Story

The Association bruiser is let into my cell again and picks up the food tray on his way over to me. Since I’m chained to the wall like last time, he feeds me bite by bite the same way he did before. After I’m finished eating he reclines against the wall and picks dirt out from under his fingernails.


I build up the courage to say hello. “My name’s Cevs. What’s yours?”


“Thanks for patiently feeding me. I can’t stress enough how thankful I am.”

He doesn’t look up from his fingernail cleaning. “It was nothing.”

He finishes one hand, then moves on to the other.

“How did you end up here?” I ask.

“I saw too much.”

I ponder this one. “You mean you saw the Oliot doing something that revealed their invasion plan?”


I feel bad for him. “Sorry.” I scrape a pattern on the dirty floor with my foot. “Do you know why they put you in here with me?”

“Cause they think I hate you.”

Makes sense. The Oliot might have found out about my meeting with the Association, or Domik could have told them about it if he was questioned.

“If I remember correctly, the Association values power over all else. I’m pretty much in the opposite of a position of power here. So why are you being so nice to me?”

Domik thinks for a bit as he finishes cleaning his last nail. “Oliot want to steal my world. Oliot are scum. You’re from Threa like me. You’re blood. Blood trumps scum.”

Good way of putting it.


“What it is, Domik?”

“Tell me a story.”

Okay, a story, which one should I choose? I know.

I tell him about how I switched out the gas canisters I sold to the Oliot. How I ran when they found out I double-crossed them. How they caught me, and how I escaped.

Domik loves the story, and keeps asking me to retell the part where they’re ripping each other’s clothes off after the gas attack.

“After leaving the command tent I walked away from the front lines in search of the shuttle. I passed by tanks, wheeled machine guns, barracks, fuel depots, supply trucks—all the machinery of war. After diverting my path around a crater left by an enemy bombardment I came across an interesting scene: huge mortar shells the size of wine barrels stacked in a long line next to a burning car. And on top of the stack was a naked man and woman.

“He was on top, sliding in and out of her in what looked like slow motion. He was being very tender too—gently caressing her face as he was fucking her. They were staring in each others’ eyes and never broke the stare for as long as I watched them. I couldn’t help notice as well that he had a flower sticking out of his ass!”

Domik chuckles. “That’s funny.”

My leg is falling asleep so I move it to let the blood flow again. “I don’t know if he stuck the flower stem up his own butt, or if she did, or someone else entirely. I can’t imagine where the flower came from, I don’t remember seeing another living plant the entire time I was there.

“They were still going at it when I walked away, I don’t think either of them even knew I was there. I did eventually find the shuttle and we took off without incident. On the ride back the image of that couple kept popping into my head. The beauty of it surrounded by so much ugliness.”

We sit in silence.

Domik breathes in deeply. “Love trumps violence.”

A very good way of putting it.

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