Episode 5: The News
Theo and Val sat in their cell discussing various methods of escape. When Val had to confirm that her ship was too damaged to use as an escape vehicle by reminding Theo that she wouldn't be stranded here if it wasn't, Theo had to again assure her that he in fact was the one sent to rescue her.
They in unison suggested--and instantly dismissed--the idea of vaporizing the glass. Neither of them had a vapor gun. Theo tried smashing the glass with his staff, but it simply bounced off and hit him in the head.
Not doing that again, he thought.
Exhausted, they both took a break from thinking of ideas and waved to the few zoo attendees who either hadn't heard that Theo was a wizard or were too curious despite being told he would kill them all if angered.
Eventually they waved to their last observer, and the zoo closed for the day. They heard a clank at the door and watched as a few rocks were flung through a slot in the middle.
"Apparently they think we eat rocks," said Val.
"You haven't eaten anything since you crashed here?" Theo asked, shocked that she didn't appear malnourished.
"I photosynthesize for energy. This cell gets plenty of sun light, but even if it didn't, I can go into low power mode and last for a few decades on a full charge."
"Oh," Theo said with a hint of jealousy as his stomach grumbled. He hadn't had anything to eat since the fried corn he ate at the festival that morning right before Arthur 'recruited' him for this adventure. "Arthur!" he shouted.
Val looked up, a little shaken by his sudden excitement. "I can't believe I didn't think of this earlier," Theovelt said. "I came here through a portal. My boss can make a portal for us to get out!"
He grabbed the pin on his shirt and shouted into it, "Arthur, come in. Arthur? It's Theo. I have located Val and need you to bring us back to your base."
Arthur's voice materialized through the pin, "I wondered when you'd think to ask for this. Hello, V0324A9823L7156. It is nice to make your acquaintance. Regrettably I cannot fulfill your request. I fear a sudden disappearance would cause a great--and possibly deadly--panic in these people. There must be an escape and flight out of the city before I can create a portal to bring you here."
"I understand," said Theo.
"Regardless," Arthur continued, "Your job is not done quite yet. These inhabitants which you have interacted with are the last remaining sentient life on this planet. A great disaster is imminent that will wipe them from the face of the planet. Sentient life is likely to not be seen on this planet for another 4,928,387 years."
"Oh my goodness! What can we do to help!? How can we stop this disaster!?" asked Theo.
"We?" said Val.
"I have not calculated when, but there will soon be a tsunami. The oceans of this world are poisonous to the inhabitants. Touching even a drop of it could kill them. You must prevent the tsunami from destroying the city and all of the creatures living inside of it. Good luck. You can do it."
They heard a click as Arthur's voice faded.
"How am I supposed to stop a tsunami!?" exclaimed Theo.
"Well, first you need to figure out how to get us out of here," said Val.
Theo plopped down on the bed of straw in their cell with a sigh. They sat in silence for an uncomfortable period of time before Theo mumbled, "Arthur did choose me for this. He must know that I can do it. What was it that he said I was good at that made him choose me?" Theo racked his brain for a few moments before continuing, "He said that I'm brave, persuasive, a leader, and I like Old Earth. He also said he liked how I don't hurt the dogs that attack my sheep and can calm the guys at the market down just by talking to them. I guess that's the persuasiveness. How can any of that help get us out?"
"My best guess is that you use that persuasiveness. Usually the ones mentioned more than once are the most important," Val suggested with a wink.
"They are terrified of me whenever I talk to them though. They'll never listen to what I have to say."
"You don't need them all to listen. All you need is one person to listen and understand your warning. You need to convince just one person that something dangerous is on the way."
"Wow, that's the most encouraging you've been. I hope you're right. We better get some sleep. I know I'm going to need it if I'm going to be able to convince any of these people that I'm not a wizard."
"Visagetome Corporation Clones do not need to sleep. And if we did, we would sleep out in the sun."
Theovelt rolled his eyes, said goodnight, and snuggled into his scratchy bed of hay. On the surface he was uncomfortable and frustrated with this situation. Deeper down though he was ecstatic for the opportunity of adventure and the chance to really save people instead of just protecting sheep from wild dogs.