“That… isn’t who we were worried about…”
Despite Kal consisting of six mechanical bodies, they all somehow looked very concerned. Their crystal eyes glowed weakly and they all stood close together. Galyn could tell something was wrong with them.
“What do you mean?” Retvik asked, hoping to settle Kal’s nerves.
Tah, the leader of the group, clad in red and silver metal, poked at the screen, sighing. “That is Imperator Kanuva. A definite threat to us unless he acts reasonable, but he’s not actually who we were worried about. He doesn’t… quite match the frequency.”
Galyn glared at Tah. “What the fuck do you mean? I spent four fucking hours trying to convince Life Goddess Kinisis to allow this anomaly to come with us and you are telling me I have the wrong being?”
Kal nodded, sighing.
“We’re sorry…” Gah tried to explain. “We should have given you more information. Or at least something to help track down the source… Because as soon as you came back, we detected the signal again. Imperator Kanuva here does match the signal but it turns out there were two sources. The other of which Imperator Kanuva probably ran into when we first picked up their signal.”
The colossal Decay Lord closed his eyes, growling. He then tapped on the console and stepped to one side.
“Then you need to go in there, speak to this anomaly and work out where the other bring is.”
All six of Kal immediately panicked, backing away towards the door.
“Not it!” Tah suddenly exclaimed. “Normally I’m the leader and I’ll take one for the team, but not this time! That Imperator will murder me again!”
“He’ll murder us all again!” Pah and Nuh both screeched rather uncharacteristically. “We can’t go in there!”
“One of you has to!” Galyn snapped, silencing Kal and their concerns. “You are the specialists on this kind of being, YOU need to deal with this. You are Decay Lords, not… whatever you used to be.”
Kal tutted and started whispering among themselves, before falling completely silent, then abruptly going back to whispers. Retvik and Galyn both waited patiently for some kind of response.
“We can’t… We just…”
“We have no choice…”
“Can’t hide forever. Have to face him.”
“He might be reasonable…”
“He might not be.”
“He might realise what we did.”
“Better we tell him the truth.”
“Better than him finding out himself.”
“But… but who? Who will he be less… angry at?”
“Fine. I’ll go…” Koh grunted. “But I want Retvik to accompany me.”
Retvik shrugged. “Sure. I will accompany you.”
A door opened to Kal’s side. Koh hesitated, flicking his wrists. As he did so, a large weapon folded out from a compartment attached to his arms – a pair of buzz saws, tipped with shimmering white crystal edges.
“Good. Because… well, the first time we met… we were all very different. And, frankly put, his… team of Imperatorai killed us.”
Koh shook his head, dismissing Retvik’s confusion. “We’ll explain once we’ve spoken to the Imperator…”