Chapter 40 - Rhett's Final Chance
“See, didn’t I tell you? Lyros is pretty interesting.” Saraiya said, leaning against her car. Dim light from her trailer spread to her driveway “To think even vulthos exist?!”
“You’re still believing them? Those are just beings from fairytales. Everyone knows that. I can’t believe you guys were having a serious conversation about them.” Natch said, his hand resting on the handle of his car door.
“I mean, I guess I’m not one hundred percent convinced, but they seemed too serious. Whenever they are serious I know there is something to take note about. I for sure believe there are things out there though. Things we don’t know of.”
“Of course you wouldn’t dismiss it. This could only help with the evidence of your delusions.” He smirked.
Saraiya scoffed. “Maybe that is a possibility, but, it does heighten the chances that my eyes didn’t deceive me. I don’t feel quite as crazy now as I had been feeling. Plus, you heard Ambri, even she brought up a white lion! You didn’t tell her did you?”
Natch shook his head. “I haven’t said a word to anyone. I think I need to get you guys to visit the city more often though. Being surrounded by each other, separated from civilization doesn’t give you much of a chance at differing opinions.”
If Natch didn’t tell on her for sneaking into the forest it had to have been Kale. Or could it have been possible that one of the other villagers saw her? She didn’t keep tabs on what everyone in Lyros was up to. The only ones that ever warned her about the forest though were Ambri and occasionally Kale.
“I read plenty of opinions.”
“Yeah, but what magazine company publishes and discusses unbelievable ideas such as the stories I have heard from you and your gullible gang?” Natch opened the door to his car. “There are no opposing opinions around you when it comes to this stuff.”
“Are you planning on taking us somewhere in the city then?”
Natch rolled his eyes.
“Well…?” Saraiya said.
“Actually I do have an idea. The Montria Zoo is reopening up this week after massive renovations. I planned on taking my little sister, but you guys are welcome to tag along if you want.”
Saraiya hadn’t been to a zoo since she last helped work for one. In specific, she helped take care of the animals at that specific zoo when she was seventeen. She worked there for about two years.
“You’re not interested?” Natch’s face dropped.
“No, no. I’ll go, I’ll ask if some of the others want to as well.”
Well everyone besides Ambri, she thought.
“Oh okay, cool. I’ll talk to you more about it at work. I’m going to head home now. I’ll try not to get abducted by vulthos or lions or whatever!” He smiled, hopped into his car, and drove off.
The Montria Zoo. Would Saraiya be able to handle going there? She hadn’t worked there in years now, she had nothing to worry about. It’s not like she would see her old coworkers anyway. They must have moved on to different jobs by now. Even if she did see some of them, time changes people. She was no longer who she used to be, and they had most likely changed as well. No one stays the same forever.
Grant groaned as he sat in his kitchen. Not from the confusion of all of the night’s conversations, however. He looked down at his finger and noticed blood had begun to trail out from around his nail again. He grabbed a paper towel and wiped off his finger.
There were no signs of a wound. It was the exact same as earlier when he grabbed the claw to show Rhett. The pain he felt was just for a second, as if he imagined it. But blood still came from where the pain originated from.
Maybe he kept pricking his hand on something without realizing it. He couldn’t think up any other solutions. It’s not like the cuts were deep, so it was nothing to be too concerned about. It was just an annoyance.
Earlier, Kale had taken the claw from Grant. He seemed to have an interest in it. Why would it matter so much as to take it away? And if it was left by past residents, then had the lions been here longer than Grant was led on to believe?
According to Ambri, it seemed the lion situation had been fairly new. She only recently started setting up cages anyway. Though, that was due to the roars getting closer.
Something didn’t sit right within Grant. How and why did that lion claw get placed under his bed. He felt it was as if someone left it there for someone to find later. Why else would a claw be attached to a rock?
Rhett scratched his head at the final notification letter in front of him. His visa was set to expire soon if he didn’t find anything to help link to his case. He swore he came out here to do the best job he could, but even he knew that he just stayed behind in the shadows, making no attempt to further the investigation.
But things were starting to get interesting as he sat by and waited. Even so, all the talks of the night were nothing to write to the headquarters about. Although, the “vulthos” he saw down at the lake were animals he had never seen before, maybe they would be interested in that even though that wasn’t what he came here for. Despite all the random oddities that had happened this week, he knew he couldn’t sit still anymore.
He still was hoping the letter he mailed to Shelpo this morning about the festivities possibly providing clues would help gain him a bit of extra time, but now those letters would change nothing as he found out the event would be taking place this next weekend. Regardless, there was no way the festivities would bring any clue, it was just wishful thinking.
He wished he wouldn’t have to confront anyone. However, since he had done nothing, he had learned nothing new. He needed to take major risks within the next week. He needed to ask the questions he had been avoiding the whole time. These new friends had made their way into his heart, he had to question them, otherwise this was all for naught.
While everyone is drunk at the concert next week, I need to start asking, Rhett thought to himself. That would be the least suspicious time to ask any kind of question. Although, there was no way Kale would be drinking, but he’d have to take the chance anyway. At least if he is in a lively atmosphere and drunk himself, anything could be taken as a joke.
He had no choice. This was his last chance, he hated that he even waited this long. He was torn between wanting to know the truth and not wanting to lose his friends. If they had nothing to hide, he would be filled with regret for wasting his time in Lyros when the true culprit was still out there. But, if he found what he came here for, well, he didn’t like to think about it. He told Shelpo he would be a professional agent, but even he didn’t know if he would be able to restrain from killing them. All for the sake of Aeyn, his little sister.