Do I Want To Know?

“Impressive, right?” Phoenix laughed at the awestruck intimidated expression I knew was on my face, but I couldn’t seem to get rid of it. “We like to offer our customers the widest variety.”

Customers?

I thought dumbly, another part of my mind calculating how large an army could be equipped with all of this and how large an area could be taken out by the explosives, especially if the nuclear bomb I thought was in the radioactive room was really there. He ran an arms trade?

He disappeared into the maze of firearms, somehow knowing where to return the flintlocks. Meena and Willow, when I looked at them, did not appear surprised to be stood in a giant storage room for assorted weapons, some of which could annihilate them in seconds.

“Um…” I uttered, trying to convey, “What the hell is this place? Who is Phoenix really?” through it. It went unnoticed. I guessed I had to figure it out for myself.

I remembered a sarcastic comment Willow had made to Phoenix a few days ago outside my house, before everything seemed to have kick-started.

“Don’t you have some hobo to decapitate?”

“Nope. Like I said, slow day.”

So she had actually meant that, then. Apparently Phoenix’s job wasn’t just Archive-guard, it was to use an arsenal of weapons to attack homeless people. That didn’t quite add up.

“Not homeless people,” Phoenix said chidingly. I started, having been unaware that he had rejoined us by the door; then glared, afraid again he was reading my thoughts. Was my face really such an open book? Whatever, he was displaying his freakish mind-reading-like tendencies again. And they weren’t welcome. As usual, the hostility I was trying to emanate bounced off him like he was rubber. “Anyone, really.”

Willow and Meena seemed to have caught on to both of our chains of thought.

“Oh, yeah - we forgot to tell you what Phoenix does for a living? Well… he‘s not really alive - but you know what - ”

I gave them a look that said very clearly what I thought of their memories.

“We’ll wait back outside in the antechamber,” Meena said meekly, following Willow out of the door. “Phoenix can tell her himself.”

The End

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