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More Trouble

231.03.20 | 9:14 a.m

The next day saw her working in the kitchen. And still, having her hands at work only seemed to fuel her thoughts.

So she bothered Frypan, the cook, with her questions. “Why are we here? Who has build all this, the Maze and the Glade? And what for? What's the bloody point of keeping a bunch of teenagers imprisoned in a sort of not too hostile home surrounded by a maze with dangerous or deathly creatures in it? A prison? No… If I wanted to imprison someone, I'd just surround the place with high walls without any door or maze. Same if I wanted to protect them and keep them safe. Sounds like a sort of bloody crazy experiment. Plus the fact that none of us remembers anything of their past!”

“What are you talking about? Get your hands busy.”

“This globe-shaped ball on top of your neck – do you use it sometimes? Have you ever wondered what it might be good for, or what other people do with theirs?”

He took some time to figure out the insult. “Are you calling me stupid?”

“You heard me. I never said stupid anywhere. But if you want I can call you Stupid, though I like Frypan better.”

They could hear a bubbling laughter, but Nick entered the small kitchen with an earnest face. At least he made every effort to keep a stern expression. He had been leaning in the door frame without anyone noticing him. “I need to ask her a few questions, if that's all the same to you, Frypan?”

The sturdy boy nodded grimly, and Nick just gripped the girl's hand and pulled her out of the kitchen before she could protest, or say anything at all, come to that.

Only when they were nearly out of earshot he turned round. “Stop that, do ya hear me?”

Kat took a step back. “What? But...”

“No. You stop that, end of discussion. I don't wanna have to put ya into the slammer for uproar and provocation. Again.” Nick took a long, deep breath and released it slowly through his nose and eyed her up and down. She did not know how or where to stand. Finally she crossed her arms in front of her and stared back at him with a sort of a grim pout.

“I think your theory is probably right. You are pretty sharp. But what the shuck do you have to go around and upset all the shanks for? All in no more than two days? Some of them are real babies sometimes.”

The girl had relaxed a bit at his first words, but now she cried out: “Oh, come on, it's s...”

“On the other hand”, Nick went on, “I've never seen a Greenie as stupid as you.”

Kat's jaw dropped. She was lost for words and therefore missed her chance to reply something.

“Sooner or later every Greenbean has their freak-out. But I never had to put a Greenie into the Slammer twice in their first 24 hours! What are you thinking?”

Kat stared at him with her mouth open, and still no words would come.

“You'd better start fitting in. Go back to the kitchen. Keep your mouth shut. Watch and learn. And try not to arise my attention, if you know what's good for you.”

The tall boy turned on the spot and strode away.

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