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Oct 20, 2019 2:49 PM
no, i'm the fucked up housepet
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...okay, then he'll open this adorable jar of jam and eat all the scones oops.

 

"Thank you!"

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It's such an adorable jar! So little and round!

He is now full of tasty scones, and nothing at all terrible has happened as a result!

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Okay. Somebody's definitely looking out for him. That's nice to know.

He gets himself up and walks back into the maze. This time he takes the other path.

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If he takes care to avoid ominous clanking, he'll be walking for a while longer before the next time something unusual happens:

He turns a corner and finds himself looking into a broad square, three corridor-widths on a side, with a pedestal in the middle on which rests what appears to be an intimidatingly large diamond. Like, 'would have to use both hands to pick it up' big. Not quite as big as his head but plausibly wider than his doubled fists. It scintillates at him.

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...okay, the scones weren't a trap, but this is definitely a trap. He's seen movies.

He's gonna walk around this room and inspect it before he gets anywhere near that pedestal.

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The trap, whatever it is, is not obvious on initial inspection. He could just turn around and leave, if he likes.

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As tempting as the giant diamond is...he knows better than that. And it might not even be a real diamond, anyway.

He turns around to look for another path that doesn't sound all ominous and clockworky.

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Ominous clockwork is reasonable easy to avoid as long as he's paying attention.

 

Until he turns a corner and finds himself staring into an alcove containing another iron wolf, close enough that he could almost reach out and touch it. It's dormant at first, sitting upright and motionless, but rouses quickly and lunges forward with a snap of its jaws.

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Motherfuck.

He stumbles backward, tries to turn and run fast enough to escape it even though he's nearly tripping over his own feet.

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Yeah, no.

The wolf leaps forward and bites his leg, just above the ankle. Its teeth are too dull to slice through his jeans, but he's going to have some nasty bruises. It pulls back, shakes its head slightly, and lunges again.

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He makes a short, sharp noise, bites his tongue. Stay focused, Z.

The bite to his leg sends him tumbling to the ground, and he rolls over as he slams into the stone, puts his arms up in front of his chest and face.

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The wolf pounces...

...and pins him down and howls, an unearthly wail whose force rattles its metal body.

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Okay, what.

He starts to try to squirm out from under its paws.

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It's pretty good at keeping him pinned. He might sustain some minor damage in the scuffle.

 

Under the sound of the howl, Z might hear that heavy ominous clanking he's been avoiding all this time. It's getting steadily closer.

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He's pretty sure he just almost pulled his shoulder out of its socket, he's definitely going to have bruises on his chest, and he is no closer to being up than he was before.

He really doesn't like the sound of that clanking, though.

What if he just...pretends to stay still...and then tries to pull himself up.

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The wolf is apparently not smart enough to see through this trick; it loses its hold on him, and has to stop howling abruptly so it can lunge and try to bite him again.

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Nope!

Time to run! Run run run and hope that he can speed up enough that it doesn't catch him again.

(Yeah, right.)

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In his hasty flight, he does actually manage to outpace the wolf...

...but he also gets to find out what sort of thing makes that heavy clanking noise.

It's like a huge suit of armor, or steampunk robot: a clanking creation of iron animated by some inexplicable force, massive and slow, with a crude blocky approximation of a humanoid shape. It strides slowly but inexorably toward him, as the wolf advances from behind. There's only one way out from between them, a branch in the path up ahead. If he runs fast enough toward the preindustrial android, he can probably make the turn before it gets close enough to grab him.

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...all right. Let's make this happen.

He sprints towards the armor as fast as his body can carry him, ready to leap to the side into the hall the moment he's close enough.

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Annnnd... he makes it! Congratulations, Z!

The slow clanking thing follows him around the corner, but this is actually a poor strategic move, since that means that when the wolf catches up a few seconds later it can't get past. They tangle together and have to take the time to straighten themselves out, during which interval Z can continue fleeing.

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Yeah, he's just gonna keep running until he can't hear weird clanking anymore.

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A highly reasonable course of ac—

 

—whoops he stepped on the wrong tile and now he is falling down a hole. At least there don't seem to be spikes at the bottom. He tumbles down a chute in pitch darkness, and lands in a heap on a cold stone floor at the bottom.

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...ow. Fuck. Ow. That's definitely gonna be...a lot of bruises.

He groans and tries to pull himself to his feet.

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A hand closes on his wrist. A very large hand, maybe even inhumanly large, and with an odd texture to it.

It drags him up off the floor, holding tight enough that the bones start to creak.

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Oh.

Well, fuck.

He moans in pain (fuck he feels like his arm's going to snap in half) and struggles in the hand's grip, but...somehow he doesn't think he's going to get anywhere.

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