Saturday, February 10, 2018

Page 1527

((Double Saturday -- Page 2 of 2))
Still, Koh made no response.

“...Alright, then,” said Jercash, immediately wanting to test the limits. He pointed at Koh authoritatively. “Sit.”

And to both his and Zenia’s utter shock, Koh sat.

Jercash stared, wide-eyed and open-mouthed. “Uh... roll over?”

Koh rolled over.

Jercash squealed with delight and ran over to the giant dog. “Oh, you’re such a good boy! Yes, you are!” He rubbed behind Koh’s ears with both hands. “And you’re so fluffy! How did you get so fluffy, huh?! Just a big softie, is what you are! Yeah!”

“Sir, this is making me a little uncomfortable...”

“Shut up, Zenia! Don’t ruin this for me! Do you know long I’ve been wanting to get a dog?! Ever since Thrasher died!”

“I don’t know who that is, sir.”

“Oh, right, that was before your time. Well, it was about forty years ago. Thrasher was this big, beastly pit bull, you see. Not anywhere near as big as Koh here, of course--nor as well-behaved, for that matter. In fact, now that I’m thinking about it, he was a real asshole. Always trying to bite people, including me. He ended up getting mauled by a mountain lion, but in all honesty, he probably provoked it. Still miss him, though.” Jercash allowed a beat to pass. “Hey, why don’t you come over here and pet Koh with me? You won’t believe how soft his fur is!”

“I’ll pass on that, sir.”

“What, are you worried he’ll bite you?” He turned to look directly at Koh’s huge face. “You wouldn’t do that, would you? Because you know that Zenia’s not a servant, and that roughhousing wouldn’t be a good idea, right? And you know that if you harmed her in any way, I would go tear the head off of that little girl you just saved and smile to myself afterwards. You know all that, don’t you? Because you’re such a good boy!”

Koh met his gaze evenly, but that was the extent of his reaction.

Jercash waved Zenia over. “C’mon.”

She remained where she was. “I’d still rather not...”

Jercash smacked his lips and went back to petting Koh. “Your loss.”

“Sir,” said Zenia, taking that stern tone that Jercash so rarely got to hear from her, “you still have considerable work left to get done today, do you not?”

Of course he did. He had a crapload of reports waiting for him back at camp, and most of his men were going to need new marching orders after the dead end that Orobell turned out to be. He was still holding onto hope that there might be something helpful to be found in the ruins of this town, but he wasn’t going to be surprised if it didn’t turn out that way.

That girl’s testimony had certainly been interesting, though. He fully intended to look into who else was stationed here in Kavia, right now, because even with access to Izalog’s impeccable memory, he wasn’t recalling any Abolishers who had the kind of power that would be required to level this town full of Vanguardians.

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