Oct 21, 2019 8:40 AM
A Cat in a box after the end of the world
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"Then it's probably safer to wait for night."

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"For now, I guess? Pretty sure my kind of person needs sunlight to stay healthy, though. Maybe yours don't." 

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"If we did, we'd all be dead," he says, with a hint of amusement.

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"Yeah, that's the impression I got." 

Hmm, next steps... "Are you hungry? I'm hungry. Wanna find out if book food is edible?" 

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"Sure. Where's my book?"

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Will's book is fetched from wherever the hell they left it. Probably back in the bedroom. 

"Just let me know which bits to read." 

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"I haven't read it either," he said with a touch of amusement, "and I hope it doesn't depict every meal I've eaten in my life. That would be a terribly dull book."

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Heh. "Didn't seem to, at least the part I read." 

In that case, they can skim through the book for mentions of food, and Cato will trust Will's judgement on whether the mentioned food items are worth trying.

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Will points out a few favorites. 

When they appear, they don't seem quite like... edible food. The smell is odd and earthy and the bread is grey and the fish is oddly wibbly. 

Will seems to find them completely normal. 

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...how about Cato tries a small amount of bread. Bread is harder to get dangerously wrong than fish. Probably. 

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The bread is definitely made out of mushrooms. 

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In retrospect, this was predictable from the whole 'underground with no sunlight' thing.

Cato doesn't particularly like mushrooms but the process of turning them into bread gets rid of most of their actively objectionable qualities, namely the texture. He eats some mushroom bread while looking through other books for some more familiar-sounding food. 

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Nothing in this particular book sounds any safer. 

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Pretty much none of it is familiar to Cato. What the hell, he might as well try the wibbly underground fish. 

It's not like anyone would miss him nope, not finishing that thought. 

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The texture is terrible. The flavor is mild and nonoffensive. 

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Ugh. He eats some more anyway, because he's hungry, but ugh. 

"It feels kinda self-indulgent to prioritise finding edible food in these books, but I feel like doing that anyway." 

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"This isn't edible?" he asks, looking slightly concerned. 

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"It's probably edible in the sense that I can digest it?" he concedes.

"It's just...disgusting. Especially the—I'm guessing this is some kind of fish?" 

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"Oh, I didn't realize. But of course, if you're from the surface- Finding something you can eat is a reasonable priority," he sounds slightly apologetic. 

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"Right. I'll...do that, then." 

He collects some scraps of paper and other flat things to use as bookmarks. They can use them to mark passages about food, for testing later when they haven't just eaten. "We should probably mark other useful stuff, too, while we're looking through the books anyway." 

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