Wednesday, May 28, 2008

012: Edolie DePrit

Ubreakable fiberglass cane: 2 votes
Cane with a concealed blade: 2 votes
Techno-cane: 5 votes
Charleston Charge was quite angry. Nurse Melody had insisted on dressing him, and her bedside manner left a lot to be desired. The pants had been an especially dire trial. He had steadfastly refused to put on his long coat and fedora-like hat, and they were now draped on the back of the wheelchair he had been forced to sit in. As he was wheeled through the front doors of TYRIS, he saw Land Captain standing with Liana Koleyna and another woman. An RV with two trailers latched to it was behind them.

"Ahoy, Charleston," said Land Captain with a salute, "I'm still assigned to drive you for this mission. They've also put me in charge of keeping Liana out of trouble, so she's coming along too. She's not too crazy anymore, though, so you don't have to worry."

"Not really all that worried, Land Captain. I am wondering who she is, though," said Charleston, pointing at the other woman.

"My name is Edolie DePrit. I am your assistant," she said.

"I see," said Charleston, whose eyes refused to stop looking at Edolie. He blinked several times, and then looked back over to Land Captain, "What's in the trailers?"

"Well, we'll be doing most of our living in the RV. The first trailer has our food and other supplies, while the other one has some other supplies. Paraphernalia, you might call it."

Charleston narrowed his eyes, "What sort of paraphernalia?"

"Well, Ishmael's in there, for one thing."

"What else is in there, Land Captain?"

"Liana's fish."

"The ones that mangled my leg?"

"They might come in handy, Mister Charge! Besides, Liana says they're really well trained. They won't attack anyone without her telling them to."

"I want to hear it from her. Is this true, Liana?"

She blushed, then nodded and smiled.

"Why are you being so quiet?" said Charleston.

"She's sort of embarrassed about the whole evil genius thing, Mister Charge. She should get over it eventually, though."

"Yes. I see," said Charleston. He thought for a moment, and then turned back to Edolie, "What are your qualifications?"

"I was trained as a field agent for the French secret service with a concentration in medicine. I promise you I will not slow you down while we pursue the frog," said Edolie.

"Wait, we?"

"Well, yes. While you have your new cane, it would not wise to send you wandering around the woods by yourself while you adjust to your new leg. I will be your partner, your constant companion, your shadow."

"How are you in the woods, though?"

"I've been given what I've been told to be the proper attire, and a quick lesson in forest survival. So I am adequate for our purpose."

"Oh. How did you know which cane I wanted? I only decided last night."

"I was not the one who ordered your cane. Someone merely assumed you would want this one," said Edolie, proffering a box.

Charleston opened it to find the titanium-reinforced techno-cane. He took it out of the box, and weighed it thoughtfully. "Edolie, help me up. I would like to try out this cane."

Edolie held out an arm, and Charleston used it to stand up. He wavered for a moment, and then placed the cane on the ground. When he thought he had attained some balance, he let go of Edolie's arm. He was unsteady for a moment, but managed to remain erect. He took an experimental step, and found his new leg to be nearly indistinguishable from the biological one. He took his coat from the back of the wheelchair, having Edolie helping him into it, and then he picked up his hat and placed it carefully on his head.

"All right, I'm ready," said Charleston, heading over to the RV. Edolie helped him into the passenger seat, while Land Captain prepared to drive. Liana and Edolie went into the back of the RV.

"Where to, Charleston?" asked Land Captain, "I know we're off to find the frog, but where should we set up camp?"

"Well, we could set it up in front of Liana's lab. We could also go into the woods, or follow the river."

"Pretty much the same choices we had when we first went to find out if the frog existed," said Land Captain.

"Pretty much." Except, this time, they had someone who knew the area with them. Charleston chose to take advantage of this. He turned around, and said, "Well, Liana, what do you think?"

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