A Hole

Arkay scratched his head as he peered down the incredibly deep hole but not very wide in the ground. Next to him stood two other Veth, who were quite content to stand around and guard the hole.

“So why is there a hole in the ground?” Arkay asked.

“She didn’t teach you anything, did She?” the smaller Veth growled, only to be punched by the larger Veth who was decorated in gold armour.

“Please, ignore Hortas,” the larger Veth smiled. “He doesn’t understand just how fresh you are.”

Arkay shrugged. “He is kinda right though…”

The larger Veth continued to smile. “Well… Doesn’t matter. My name is Continuity. It is a pleasure to spend time with you, Veth Prime.”

“You can just call me Arkay.”

“I’ll call you idiot!” Hortas interrupted, only to be punched again, this time in the face. Hortas growled, got to his feet then stomped off. “Fine, be with the idiot. I’ll be over here!”

Continuity waved at Hortas, then turned back to Arkay. “You wish for an answer to your question. You ask why there is a hole in the ground.”

“Whatever came in, that is how it got in?” Arkay asked, feeling awkward.

Behind them, the three great beings, Kinisis, Stasis and Kairos, were pacing up and down, seemingly having an argument, but at such a pitch that neither Veth could hear what they were saying, outside of random outbursts. But their anger had an underlying tone of fear.

“Yes, that is how it got in. The realm of Kinigi encircles the Universe. This creature broke through.”

“So wait…” Arkay blinked, not sure whether he felt more or less confused. “Kinigi… I thought Kinigi was at the centre of the universe? But really it’s around it?”

Continuity continued to smile. Maybe that was why he was called that. “Yes, around it. Like a protective crust. A metaphysical one. One that only us Veth are capable of treading on normally, but you get what I mean. It is a barrier beings must get through if they wish to enter our universe.”

Arkay glanced at the hole. “Do beings get in often?”

“No. Not at all. Been a good couple of million years since it last happened and something actually managed to dig through. We have seen attempted break-ins and little dips in the surface where others had attempted to get through, but normally they are covered up and everything is fine. This though is rare. Most likely why She did not tell you. You have only been around for a few weeks. There is a lot for you to learn that Kinisis has not told you.”

“I noticed…” Arkay tutted.

The great beings had stopped arguing. Kinisis was walking over to her two Veth, a very worried look on her face.

“I… assume nothing else has passed through, children?” There was a wobble in her voice.

“No, Mistress!” the Veth replied in unison.

“That’s… good, at least… We’ll need to fill this hole…” Kinisis’s worries didn’t fade. She sighed, then turned back to talk to Stasis and Kairos again.

Continuity and Arkay both watched as Kinisis wandered off.

“Last time this happened, did She act like that?” Arkay was feeling more confused rather than less, and that feeling was bothering him.

“Not that I recall…” Continuity answered as he got up. “But all that time ago, I was a youngling like you, I didn’t know better. Now come, we need to prepare some filler…”

Continuity started walking off down the river, in a direction that went perpendicular to the many rivers that flowed by. Arkay got up and followed. There wasn’t much else he could do.

“Fill it with what?”

“… Stuff. Not really sure what exactly it is. All I know is that it’s pink and rubbery and it seals holes up no problem.”

Eventually, the two Veth reached what looked like a large, round, concrete tub. All around it were Veth shovelling dirt into the tub. Some Veth were standing at the edge of the basin, spitting into it, while a winged Veth hovered above it, stirring the mixture with a giant spoon.

“We use a mixture of spit and dirt to fill holes?” Arkay’s confusion was at an all-time high.

“It hardens nicely,” Continuity explained. “It is more spit than dirt. When the mixture is done, Stasis and Kinisis will add… something, I am not sure what, which will seal the hole completely and reinforce it.”

“What if something got through though?”

Continuity sighed. “You do ask a lot of questions. But I do not have an answer to that. I assume we will find out soon enough.” The older Veth calmly walked over to the concrete tub and picked up two shovels, throwing one towards Arkay. “Now get digging. Just because you are the Veth Prime, doesn’t mean you get to skimp out on the chores…”