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This chapter is dedicated to Ar0n65. I hope you don't hate this chapter as much as you think you're going to. ;)
NOTE: This is the highly anticipated closet chapter. It is a bit short, but there will be longer, more action-packed chapters later on.
Chapter 7: Seems Legit (Not Really)
It is our 4th day residing in Cartoon’s mind. I still suspect that she might be hiding something from us. What that is, I don’t know. That sassy, pink-eyed character seems suspicious, as well.
It’s not that I don’t kind of like it here, it’s just so bizarre that no one else seems to be questioning it. It’s almost like we’re being brainwashed. Nonetheless, it is still nice to see all of my friends from the wiki. As much as I hate to admit it, these internet people do mean a lot to me and I do…love them.
The problem is, I know these guys far too well and I fear that if we stay cooped up in this place too long, we’re going to be at each other’s throats, and that’s the last thing we need.
“Why are you writing on a used napkin?” Ar0n asked inquisitively.
“…It was the first thing I had at hand,” Alica answered in trivial embarrassment.
Ar0n chuckled softly, “But there’s paper everywhere.”
“I know, but…” Alica sighed, “I guess I just wanted something that was all my own here…”
“So, you picked a used napkin?”
Alica cracked a smile, “Yes, don’t judge.”
Ar0n smirked, “Never,”
Alica seemed distracted and her eyes twinkled as she gazed out the window.
“What were you writing about, anyway…?” Ar0n curiously inquired.
“Nothing…” Alica suddenly seemed disheartened and walked away.
Ar0n inconspicuously watched her leave as he blinked enquiringly.
In the intervening time, Tash was falling asleep on one of the beanie chairs in the game room with his music turned up loudly, when all of a sudden; a familiar voice woke him up.
“Hey there, Sleepyhead!” she said cheerily.
Tash yawned, though he was still pleased to see her. “Hey, Lucy…”
Lucy smiled brightly as she rolled her eyes to the floor in deep, concentrated thought.
“You know what we should do? We should go back to the pool!” she playfully suggested.
Tash slowly got up from his lazy position and stretched with a smirk on his face as he spoke, “What? Just so you can try drowning me, again..?”
Lucy giggled endearingly, “Nah, I was thinking we could go into shallower waters, today…”
“That’s right, keep things tame…” Tash agreed with a cautious chuckle.
As they happily made their way to the aquatic center, they walked past Becky, who stood tensely in the corner. For days, she had wanted to talk to Alica; and not just a normal, simple talk formed from common courtesy. No, she wanted something real; something engaging and meaningful, like the types of conversations she used to have with her dear friend.
First things first, she needed to find her; but where would a wild child like her be lurking?
“Looking for someone?” MarcTechGuy1313 asked unexpectedly.
Becky quickly became irritated, “No! Leave me alone!” she snapped.
“I know what’s going on. You’re looking for Alica, aren’t you..? You want to talk to her and straighten things out because your friendship isn’t what it used to be, right..?”
Becky’s eyes widened in shock, “…How did you know that?”
Marc shrugged, “I guess I’m more aware of what goes on around here than most people realize…”
“Oh….well, do you know where she is?” Becky pressed calmly yet restlessly.
“That I don’t know, at this time…” Marc said regretfully.
“Oh, well do you know how the heck we all got here..?”
“That I don’t know, either…” Marc chuckled nervously.
“Well, then you’re not all-knowing, you’re just good at deciphering emotions…” Becky stoutly pointed out.
“Okay, fair enough…” Marc gave in.
On that note, Becky continued her frugal search.
Back at the aquatic center, Lucy took a fleeting glance around and once again breathed in the fresh scent of chlorine; Tash quickly following behind. Finally, the sight of the steaming hot tub caught Lucy’s eye. She batted her eyes saucily as she glimpsed over at Tash.
“Oh, god no…” Tash said in terror.
“Yes,” Lucy tittered.
In a sudden burst of excitement, she grabbed his hand and skipped merrily towards the hot tub. Once they got to the edge, Lucy let go of his hand and slowly glided her body into the warm, bubbly loch.
She let out a sigh of ease and relished in her luxury. Feeling slightly left out, Tash decided to get over his fear of water and get in the tub with her. Immediately after getting in, he had no more qualms.
“Wow, this feels great…” Tash gushed.
“I know, right!?” Lucy chortled.
Lightly and playfully, she kicked Tash’s leg on the other side. Tash gave her a simpering smile of friskiness and flippantly kicked back. As they continued to enjoy themselves in their kicking rivalry, without warning, Reason’s head popped up from underneath the water.
“Would you two cut it out!? I’m trying to sleep, here!” he complained.
“What the—Reason!?” Tash exclaimed in discomfiture.
“What the hell, Reason!?” Lucy cried as she frantically paddled over to Tash for comfort.
Reason grumbled, “Fine, I’ll leave you cutesy kids to it…”
As he got out, Lucy’s head was still laying securely on Tash’s shoulder.
“Do you mind..?” she asked anxiously.
“…No,” Tash nodded has he tried to get over the shock of what had just happened.
Meanwhile, Ar0n was busy getting some fresh bread from the counter, when he bumped into Alica, again.
“Oh, sorry…” he said uncertainly.
“No, it’s fine. Actually, I wanted to talk to you about something…”
“Sure, what’s up?” Ar0n replied.
“Well, it’s about Becky…” Alica said in quiet sorrow.
Precipitously, Sydney came walking down the hallway as Isabel simultaneously walked towards her from the other side.
“Oh…hey, Sydney; hey, guys!” Isabel incredulously greeted her friends.
“Izzy, I need to talk to you…” Sydney began.
“Um…okay,” Isabel responded as her voice trembled faintly.
“Okay, first, what was yesterday all about!? You slammed the table and then you stormed off!”
Isabel sighed heavily, recoiling at the memory.
“I know; I’m sorry. I don’t know what got into me…it’s just…ugh, that whole day I was off…”
Sydney paused on this thought for a moment and then continued, “Yeah, well, what concerns me is the fact that this transformation is happening much quicker than I thought, which means that I have even less time left than I previously expected…”
Isabel tilted her head in exhaustion and confusion, “…Wait, what? What transformation…?”
“I…you…ugh, must they be here, right now!?” Sydney pointed to Ar0n and Alica who were staring blankly back at them.
Isabel smirked mildly, “Oh, come on, Sydney; they can be here if they want to be…”
“But…but…” Sydney’s voice turned into a whisper as she got closer, “This matter needs to be discussed in confidence…”
“Uh….uh…” Isabel began to panic. “7 MINUTES IN HEAVEN!!!”
In a sudden bout of hysteria, she pushed Ar0n and Alica into a nearby closet and locked the door.
Moans and groans were coming from the inside as Sydney continued to explain, “You see, the longer you exist in your fantasy world, the more you become like the creations you’re replacing…I think I mentioned this, before…”
“Well, yeah but…”
Suddenly, they heard rapid gasps and yelps coming from the closet.
Isabel barged in, “What the hell is going on in here!?”
She came in to see a huge, dark, swirly abyss, as well as Ar0n and Alica screaming and holding each other tightly.
Isabel’s eyes widened in fright, “…Oh, my god, what is that!?”
Alarmed, Sydney shoved them all out and shut the door.
“Ha-ha, let’s not worry about that, right now…” she said nervously.
Isabel caved her face within her hands in agitation, “Sydney, what in the world was that..?”
“I-It’s just a silly, little portal that shows up in random places, sometimes…” Sydney said as she smiled awkwardly.
“For no apparent reason?” Isabel asked as she narrowed her eyes with her hand on her hip.
Sydney sighed, “…There is a reason, but I don’t want to get into all that, at this time. For now, just ignore it…”
Isabel crossed her arms and glared, “Yeah, okay, sure…”
Just then, Becky came walking into the scene and spotted Alica and Ar0n scared stiff and still holding each other. The closet was left wide open.
Becky became red with anger, “…Oh, my god! Alica, I’ve been looking for you all day and when I finally find you, I discover that you’ve just been canoodling with Ar0n in the closet, all this time!?”
Snapped out of their fear, Ar0n and Alica blushed and briskly let go of each other.
“Becky, no! It’s not what it looks like!” Alica said in distress.
Becky lifted up her hand, “Just stop, I don’t want to hear it.” She walked away desolately.
“Wait! Becky, don’t leave!” Isabel hollered, “The closet thing was my fault. I mean, aren’t we all closet nerds…?” she chuckled shamefully.
Becky scoffed and continued to walk.
Alica went running after her, “Becky, come back!”
Isabel sighed sadly, “Damn, I ruin everything…”
“It’s not your fault. You’re just starting to do things on impulse, like I do…” Sydney clarified.
“But I really don’t want to be like that. Besides, now Alica and Becky are fighting…”
“Oh, please; things have been tense between them, since they’ve gotten here…haven’t you noticed?”
“Well, whatever. We shouldn’t be talking about it, anyway…” Isabel put her hand on her head in frustration and walked away.
She sauntered on until she found a quiet, empty room and sat down in one of the chairs. It was then that she started to bite her nails ferociously; something she had not been able to do since she had gotten here. Isabel always did this when she was deep in thought and it calmed her nerves.
Thinking that no one was watching her, she nibbled her cuticles like there was no tomorrow. Tash, who was walking by, noticed the door was slightly cracked open, and since he heard noises, decided to peek inside. Shaken by what he was witnessing, he put his hand over his mouth and wondered what was causing her to look and act so traumatized.
Feeling remorseful and a tad revolting, Isabel took a deep breath and decided to stop. Little did she know that it was too late for her not to be seen. Unable to think of something appropriate to say to her, Tash decided to just walk away and let it go.