Friday, April 6, 2018

Page 1659

((TZKS 5th Anniversary -- Page 8 of 24))
Hector was able to comfortably remake his armor into a non-cooling variant. He drew a few looks from the apparent residents, as they were not even wearing climate suits, despite looking like normal human beings.

The cooled street branched off into several others just like it, Hector saw. He noticed enormous sliding doors at each intersection, and even though they currently stood open, Hector had a hunch as to their purpose. They were probably supposed to seal shut in the event of an emergency. If something went wrong on one street, then the rest of them wouldn’t be compromised, too.

An interesting concept, Hector thought. The people here probably used it to help deal with heat leaks or whatever, but he could imagine it being used militarily as well, like to defend or even trick a force of invaders.

Hmm.

At length, though, he had to ask Garovel the obvious question. ‘How did all these people from the surface get down here?

They probably aren’t actually from the surface,’ the reaper told him privately.

What?

These people were probably born here.’

Are you serious?

Yep. While Hun’Kui are the most common to see out in the open, the Undercrust has always had a rather sizable population of people who aren’t at all resilient to the extreme temperatures. And as technology has improved, I imagine that population has only grown.

Huh...’ Hector recalled Garovel mentioning something to that effect before, but he was still having a rather difficult time believing it, quite frankly. Unfortunately, he didn’t know how to articulate that disbelief into a comprehensive line of questioning.

What a place to grow up in, huh? Gives a new meaning to the idea of an “indoor kid” when going outside means being roasted alive.

Hector could hardly imagine it. Granted, he and the others had passed two checkpoints when they entered this area, but those checkpoints hadn’t looked very well guarded. One of them was empty, and the other had a guy who seemed more interested in the book he was reading than in what they were doing.

Didn’t we hear that there was some kind of civil war going on around here?’ said Yangéra.

Some kind, yes,’ said Axiolis.

So why do all these people seem so relaxed, then?’ she said.

It must not have affected Capaporo very much yet,’ said Axiolis.

And perhaps it never will,’ said Garovel. ‘Historically, cities in the Undercrust have been notoriously isolated from one another, even after its comparatively early invention of locomotives.

That is true,’ said Axiolis.

Still,’ said Yangéra, ‘this does strike me as rather odd, especially considering the level of strength that we are all sensing, right now.

Hold on a second,’ said Garovel, and he stopped, which made everyone else stop, too. ‘I think I sense our friend Roman.

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