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[personal profile] wonder_city
Okay, maybe not Wonder City this week. Hope you are continuing to enjoy this interlude!

The door of Christopher’s “guest suite” did not come with a key in the lock. The Dean made do with a comb jammed into the old-fashioned keyhole and a chair wedged under the handle.

"I'm not climbing a glass mountain for that asshole," said Christopher, with finality. "He’s a handsy bastard, too."

“He doesn’t even have the excuse of being drunk,” Tom said gloomily. “What the hell was that stuff anyway? It tasted like carbonated Kool-Aid.” She glanced sideways at the Dean, who was carefully examining the furniture in the room.

“Gross,” agreed Christopher absently, while he paced back and forth with his hands dramatically twisted in his hair. "Of course something had to go wrong. Something always goes wrong.” He had the satisfaction of a Cassandra in his voice, although, Tom thought, he hadn’t predicted anything going wrong at all.

Tom said, “Look, Christopher, I think they’re just trying to give you a nice story, it’s just that they’re not really equipped--”

Christopher flung himself on the canopy bed, which puffed out a huge cloud of dust and creaked alarmingly. He scrambled back off of it, sneezing and trying to dust himself off while saying, “No, no, it’s obvious there’s something wrong here, there’s ALWAYS something wrong, you know...”

The Dean gave Christopher a look which strongly suggested that any and all woe in their current situation could be traced back to a single source, consisting of him. She started opening the drawers in one of the large carved chests.

Tom said, “It just seems that they haven’t had much practice...”

Christopher said, “Why not? Who makes a big fairy tale theme park and staffs it and then lets it sit around?”

Tom said, “Maybe it’s the off season?”

Christopher gave her a look far more sarcastic than she deserved, in her opinion. But before she could reply, the Dean said, apparently to the contents of a small drawer, “It’s not staffed.”

“What?” asked Christopher. “Of course it’s staffed, we met--”

The Dean pulled the drawer completely out and dumped a pile of small bones onto the carpet. Christopher pulled a face. The Dean toed through the bones briefly and went on, “Those aren’t staff, if by staff you mean people who are hired and earn a wage. No, the people you have met are part of the park. Still, Christopher has a point. There’s a reason why we seem to be the only tourists.”

Tom said, “But, if they’re not staff... what are they?”

Christopher said, “They’re... animatronic?”

“Well, they’re probably wired,” said the Dean, investigating another drawer. “But there are certain things robots just don’t do very well, you know? Clones, probably.”

Tom returned to the subject that actually bothered her. “Why do you think we’re the only... tourists?”

“That,” said the Dean with only the slightest hint of exasperation, “is what I am trying to find out. Oh, I might have guessed.” She pulled a carved box out of a drawer and popped it open. Inside was what looked like a miniature scepter.

The Dean glanced briefly around the room and settled on the elaborate gold-framed mirror. She pointed the scepter at it and the mirror transformed, projecting brightly-colored boxes and lines of text Tom guessed were menus. She flicked the scepter back and forth, selecting options, until the mirror made several pleasant chiming sounds and filled with unintelligible text, white on black.

Christopher said, “Why isn’t it in English?”

The Dean said, “Why should it be?”

Suddenly, a pleasant woman’s voice said, “Guests are not permitted behind the scenes. Viewing the mechanism spoils the story. I shall escort you to a proper level.” The screen flickered, then returned to colorful boxes, animations, and menus.

The Dean said, “Damn,” and started working with the scepter again. The pleasant woman’s voice said, “Unauthorized use of codes can result in sanctions up to and including expulsion from the park. Expulsion from the park can result in sanctions up to and including unreturned luggage, lack of transportation, fines, fees, lack of joy, refusal of refund, unfinished stories, injury, or death. The management is not responsible for guests who have been expunged.”

The Dean paid no attention. The pleasant voice said, “There will be no further warning,” and the mirror abruptly turned back into a mirror. As though to emphasize the words, the mirror cracked right across.

Tom thought, of course.

The Dean tossed the scepter over her shoulder into a corner. Christopher said, “What the hell?”

The Dean didn't look like she was going to answer him, but in any case, she didn't get a chance. The tapestry which covered the far wall started to ripple. While Christopher and Tom stared at it, gape-mouthed, it split in the middle to reveal the edge of an opening door.

Standing in the doorway was the black-haired saturnine man from the feast. “Now you’ve gone and done it,” he said with gloomy satisfaction. “You’d better come with me if you want to live.”

Then he broke into a grin which was slightly too toothy for good looks. “I never get to say that. It’s a dog’s life being the villain, I tell you.”









Date: 2012-09-12 05:44 pm (UTC)
the_rck: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_rck
I'm almost going to regret when you go back to posting Wonder City. I'm enjoying this so much!

Thanks for writing!

Date: 2012-09-13 01:20 pm (UTC)
heavenscalyx: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heavenscalyx
I'm so glad! Maybe we'll keep it up as a comment incentive. :)

Date: 2012-09-12 09:56 pm (UTC)
kore: (Lucy squee - Bram Stoker's Dracula)
From: [personal profile] kore
The pleasant woman’s voice said, “Unauthorized use of codes can result in sanctions up to and including expulsion from the park. Expulsion from the park can result in sanctions up to and including unreturned luggage, lack of transportation, fines, fees, lack of joy, refusal of refund, unfinished stories, injury, or death. The management is not responsible for guests who have been expunged.”

I LOVE this. LOVE.

Date: 2012-09-13 01:20 pm (UTC)
heavenscalyx: (Default)
From: [personal profile] heavenscalyx
HEEEEE

Date: 2012-10-23 10:58 pm (UTC)
the_leaky_pen: (Default)
From: [personal profile] the_leaky_pen
I can't even. This is fantastic!

I was a little iffy on this (mainly because I missed Wonder City so much) but this is turning out to be a wild tale. <3

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