Chapter 8 - Trapped


Cylor awoke to a room he did not recognize. He no longer felt any pain, as if the fight that had just taken place had never happened. Lights in tight patterns lined parts of the walls, creating illuminated pictures of some sort. They looked alien to him. There were five symbols and lines that were filled with a different amount of color under each picture. He tried to study them, but could only recognize one pattern. It looked like his tailhand, a human hand. Looking up at the wall again, he noticed at the very top, there was a picture of a Dhasum. Was it supposed to be him? Even from the picture, the tail looked like his own.


Cylor used his flippers and navigated around the room. It was spacious enough, but he couldn’t find any sort of exit. Was he in a dream?


As he made his way from wall to wall, he noticed another screen that had many more illuminated images, simplified drawings of other species. Many he didn’t recognize, though as he reached out to touch them with his flippers, the wall displayed more as he swiped up. The list continued on for a long time until it stopped at the bottom where he found a picture of two Bakkons, a Gurden, and a Dhasum. Though he found no trace of an Elnoa.


He pressed one of his fingers from his handtail on Tynun’s picture, and the same symbols that were on the other wall appeared. He did not know what any of it meant. After figuring out how to minimize the previous image, he did the same with the photo of Guile. Nothing made any sense. He left that wall and returned to the one with only the picture of himself. He sat there for who knew how long, yet he didn’t feel panicked. Peace surrounded him and he couldn’t understand why.


What was real? As he questioned his sanity, a voice called out to him. “DHASUM.”


Cylor looked all around the room, but found no trace of another living thing around. It surprised him to hear a voice speaking his own language.


“Would you like me to explain what is happening to you?” The voice didn’t sound natural.


“Yes…?” Cylor answered.


“Congratulations on your new home. You have been saved by the humans and your fearless master will now meet your every need.”


Cylor tensed up and felt his heartbeat speed up. He was indeed captured by the humans. He bit his tongue at what that meant for all the pictures he saw on the wall. “Saved by humans?”


“Yes. You will no longer need to live in the wilderness, fending for your life. The human who has saved you will take care of your every need.”


“But isn’t it the humans who tried to hurt me and my friends and pit Tynun against Neyr?”


“What you see on this wall are your stats. They are written in the human language. Call out to me any time and I can explain what you are seeing.”


“Tch, you won’t even answer me?”


“What would you like assistance with, DHASUM.”


Cylor sighed and let himself melt to the ground. “Fine. Tell me what that wall says.”


Level: 1

HP: 16

MP: 8

Attack: 6

Defense: 9

Speed: 8

“Congratulations, DHASUM, your speed is much greater than average for your kind. DHASUM speed at your level is normally 3.” The voice paused for a moment. “Congratulations, DHASUM, you have a secret talent! Our database has never seen such an anomaly as your tail. As we continue to observe your developments, perhaps we can give you greater insight to understanding yourself. Please be patient with us as we try our best to understand you.”


“Us? Who is all watching me?” Cylor inched closer to the wall.


“The database of all living things.”


Cylor hopped over to the other wall and pressed his friends’ images. “Can you tell me about these guys?”


Level: 1

HP: 20

MP: 10

Attack: 3

Defense: 12

Speed: 5



Level: 1

HP: 12

MP: 14

Attack: 9

Defense: 7

Speed: 12

The voice read off the information. It was a lot to take in, but Cylor felt that the information seemed accurate. He next went through the familiar faces of the adversaries they had fought, and all the unfamiliar creatures ranked much higher than them. They didn’t have a chance from the start. And with how long the list is, the humans had no shortage of species to throw at them.


“How do I get out of here?” Cylor asked the ceiling.


“When the humans need you. They will summon you.”


“So I’m trapped here?”


“Trapped is an oppressive word. You are taken care of. In here you will never go hungry, thirsty, or need to defecate.”


An eternal prison.


“How often are we let out of this room?”


“Judging by my calculations of this specific pack of humans, it appears once every two weeks on average is when you will be let out, unless you become one of their favorites.”


“Two weeks?!”


“Fret not, these humans like to sell many of their Zinnals off to other humans. If that is the case, the frequency of leaving this room could increase.”



Sarby woke up exhausted, tufts of grass splaying beneath him. His ears rang loudly and the beating sun burned his eyes. He lifted himself off the ground, though still wobbled. The surge of energy that once raced through his body now left him. He didn’t even have enough power to charge up his cluster to the dimmest brightness. Grass rustled as he made his way through the unknown.


Between the peals clashing in his ears, he heard footsteps in the distance and voices in his own language. He didn’t dare run out; he tried to sneak his way closer to listen. This land could be outside of Jalla, Sarby thought. It’s better to not show myself. He inched closer to the outskirts of tall weeds and walked alongside the voices until a bird swooped through and plucked at his horn, knocking him down.


The voices hollered beside Sarby as he thought about lifting himself back up to run, but it was no use. In the time it would take him to balance himself back up on his two legs, they would have him in their clutches. He stayed in place, staring up at the sun.