“You’ve been staring at that thing for ten minutes.”
Arkay blinked, then shook his head, snapping himself out of a chance. A heavy slap from Iatre brought him properly back to reality. Sitting ahead of them, with his back facing them, was Helkan, a strange being from another universe who happened to look a lot like Arkay, but in red rather than yellow. Helkan was happily passing the time by playing some sort of hand-held electronic game system.
“You’re not though,” Iatre hissed. “You keep on looking back. You’ve always been searching for things you want and just when you think you’ve settled, you want more. Thank heavens that everyone around here has open relationships, otherwise I’d be rather angry.”
“Ye- wait, what?” Arkay rubbed his eyes. What the fuck was wrong with him. Why wasn’t he paying attention?
Iatre tutted and leaned back. “I’m just saying, I don’t think a monogamic relationship between us is feasible.”
“What? I’m sorry, I don’t get what you’re talking about!” Arkay stood up and looked around. He needed something to drink. “I’m really sorry, I’m just…”
“You’re drunk on lust. I’ve seen it before. Not in Veth like us. Back when I was alive. I don’t think you’re even aware that you’re doing it.” Iatre was still tutting but he hadn’t gotten up. He sat on the floor, arms crossed in anger. “I may not remember who I was but I remember what I did. I was a man of science. I know things. And I know that you have been acting different ever since that Syklia being arrived here bringing that… THING with her.”
“You seem angry…” That was the only thing Arkay could think to say. He’d given up trying to find something to drink. He sat back down next to Iatre, before suddenly realising that Helkan was now walking towards them.
Helkan was smiling. He had clearly heard their conversation but had decided to ignore it. Really, he was just happy to be there.
“Am I interrupting anything?” Helkan asked cheerfully.
“Not really,” Iatre grumbled. “Just me breaking up with Arkay because he’s a cuntbag who can’t keep his eyes off other beings.” With one final tut, Iatre leaped to his feet and stormed off.
Arkay watched Iatre leave, then stared at the ground. A wave of emotions, from embarrassment to anger and back again, washed over him.
Helkan didn’t say anything at first. He threw himself down next to Arkay, still smiling.
“He’s not very nice.”
“That wasn’t nice of him,” Arkay sighed. “But Iatre is correct. I’m a massive douche who always manages to chase away good beings.”
“If he is a good being, he will forgive you,” Helkan was grinning now. “I am sure he is. But I am glad you like me, as we shall most likely have no choice but to spend some time together.”
Once again, Arkay was suddenly incredibly confused.
“I believe Syklia wishes to meet with other Universal Personifications, and that Kinisis may join her. I assume you will come along too?”
“Fuck!” Arkay shouted. “I hope not! Fuck… Way to go, me, constantly saying the wrong things… I didn’t mean… You know what, I’m going to go throw myself into that stream over there.”
The Veth Prime rolled over and did exactly as he said he would, throwing himself head first into a stream. The High Guardian simply continued to smile as he walked over, trying to hide his laughter.
“It’s not funny.”
“If you say so,” Helkan snickered. “But you should come. It will be fun.”
Arkay grunted. “Okay, fine. It’s not like I’ll have any say in the matter anyway…”