Tale: Worried

“I’m worried about Arkay…” Retvik sighed as he paced up and down the kitchen, watching Elksia cook.

“You’re always worried about Arkay!” Elksia smiled. She was preparing dinner today. It was supposed to be Arkay’s turn to cook, but since he wasn’t here, Elksia decided to cook her super special ‘pitsa’ meal. Wasn’t at all traditional Rethan cuisine, more like the fast food of Cassids and Thropes, but still, it was a hearty meal, and the tomato and cheese covered bread was always tasty dipped in an equally tomato-y sort of soup. “You’ve been worried about Arkay ever since you learned that he’s exactly the same age that your own kid would have been…”

Retvik sighed some more, but stopped pacing. “He’s been gone for three days. Hasn’t called me or anything. Normally I at least get a mnima saying that he’s alright and he’s having fun.”

Elksia shrugged. She’d finished kneading the dough and placed it to one side to let it rise. She then started work on the tomato sauce to go on top. “Retvik, come on. He’s twenty four. He’s at the age where they go off missing for a week. Probably getting laid. I totally did when I was that age…”

As Elksia continued her baking mission, Tenuk came down the stairs to sour everyone’s mood. “Elksia, he didn’t go to Kolasi for a holiday, he was arrested and taken there. I called the police station, they said he had to be taken to a special locked down facility then wouldn’t say any more!”

“He willingly went with them though?” Elksia asked.

“Yes but…”

“It’s because of this rebellion on Kolasi!” Retvik interrupted. “They want Ksa to go there and tell the Kalsa Warriors that they don’t need to be aggressive, they can get what they want peacefully!”

“If that was the case, can’t they do it from home?” Elksia was confused. “Why would Arkay need to go to Kolasi?”

Retvik tutted, as Tenuk leaned over and tasted some of the cause Elksia had just made. “If you want a peaceful solution, speaking over a tele-communications line isn’t the most effective route. You need to SHOW that you are being genuine.”

Elksia shrugged again. “I dunno. I bet he’s not even on Kolasi. Arkay’s a super cool little vok but he’s not the be all and end all of… Tenuk, stop eating all the sauce!”

“Sorry…” Tenuk muttered as he fled the kitchen. He wandered into the lounge, looking for something to do. “Anyone seen my tablet?”

“By the electronic games computer!” Retvik shouted. “You ask that literally every other day!”

“Well stop putting it in a perfectly reasonable place!” Tenuk countered. “If you just leave it wherever I left it, I’d find it again.” He found his tablet and flopped on one of the bean bag chairs, before quickly jumping up in shock. “What the… Um… Uh…” Rather than explain what had shocked him, Tenuk got stuck trying to think of a good curse word to use at the end of his sentence. Luckily, Retvik was on hand to smack him around the face.

“What is it?”

“Elksia was right about Arkay not being on Kolasi…” Tenuk held up his tablet, which was displaying the latest news. Retvik and Elksia both stopped what they were doing to examine one of the smaller headlines.

“All apogen Ksa are being held in a secure facility?” Elkia stuttered, confused. “What’s an apogen?”

“A Ksa picked at birth, like Arkay, and the majority of our Ksa populace!” Retvik explained, snatching the tablet from Tenuk’s hands to read more. “They’ve been taken to Kryada of all places. By the Light, that planet is a shithole.”

“Wow…” Tenuk blinked. “It’s as if someone wants the Ksa to rebel the same way the Kalsa Warriors have…”