Savak: The Medallion - Part Five
When Savak and Lukas left Jason's house, it was around noon.
By the time they reached the industrial district, the sun had all but disappeared
behind the buildings. It was nearly dark when they reached the factory itself.
It was small compared to the other factories. But it was a regular brick layout,
with a sloping, sheet metal roof. Tall windows dotted the outside walls of the
building periodically, but these had been painted over some time ago, denying
prying eyes the chance to peek inside.
The factory yard was enclosed by a chain-link
fence, topped with barbed wire. The only gate, the main gate, was located on
the south side of the building. It was this gate that both Lukas and Savak were
focused on, hidden behind a pile of crates.
"That's the factory," Lukas said. "I was here
last night, with one of my…'friends'."
"Did your 'friend' have any suggestions about
getting inside?" Savak asked. "That gate is way too open for my liking."
"I know. But it's the only way in. Believe me,
"So what do we do now?"
Lukas had to think about this for a moment. "We'll
have to make a break for it," he concluded. "Head for one of those crates in
the yard. We can plan the next move from there."
"Alright." Savak eyed one of the crates. "I think
that one to the right of the gate is the closest."
Lukas nodded. "Got it. Ready?"
They both dashed at once, Savak pulling ahead
and reaching the crate first. Once there, they selected another crate in the
yard, dashed to that, and followed that pattern until they reached the side
of the building. Here they both rested. Savak didn't have to rest long because
Lupes run most of their lives in the wild. They're used to it. As he waited
on Lukas, he scoped out their next move.
High on the side of the building was a vent,
hanging on a single screw over a small hole. Next to the vent, running from
the roof down to the bottom of the building was a drainpipe. Even as Lukas was
recovering, Savak was formulating a plan.
"Alright," Lukas said, getting to his paws. "We
need to get a move on. Savak? What are you up to?"
"Huh?" Savak asked, turning his attention from
the drainpipe. "Oh, I was just thinking…Do you think you could shimmy up that
"Shimmy up the pipe?" Lukas asked. "What would
that…Oh, to get to that vent, you mean? I could try."
They both scurried along the edge of the factory,
trying to keep in the shadows. When they reached the pipe, Lukas grabbed hold
of it and tried to jiggle it. Then he leapt up and hung on it for a few moments.
When it didn't move, he looked down to Savak.
"It seems firm enough to me," he said. "Come
on; let's get inside, and quickly."
Lukas climbed up to the vent nimbly as Savak
mounted the pipe, following at a slower pace. He wasn't used to climbing, let
alone climbing slender objects. When he reached the vent, he noticed that Lukas
was already in the duct inside the building, watching him climb.
"Come on," he said, holding out a paw. "It's
not that far."
Savak hesitated for a moment, then grabbed Lukas's
paw, and tried climbing over to the vent. As he released the pipe, he lost his
footing, and the next thing he knew, he was swinging from Lukas's paw, twenty
feet from the ground! It was all he could do to keep from crying out.
"Hang on, Savak!" Lukas said, trying to pull
the Lupe in. Savak tried to get a purchase on the brick wall, but the claws
on his hind paws kept slipping. It's hard to dig your claws into a solid surface.
"What do you think I'm doing?" Savak snapped
back, trying to keep his voice down. He did his best not to struggle too much.
What happened next happened so fast that neither
of them was entirely sure what took place. Simply put, Lukas managed to get
a good foothold while trying to haul Savak in. When he did, he pulled too hard,
and Savak shot into the duct, plowing directly into Lukas.
For a moment, neither moved, both a bit shocked
at what happened. Then Savak got up and shook his fur out.
"We'd better get a move on," he said. "We probably
made enough noise in here to attract some attention."
"Yeah, let's go," Lukas said, getting to his
paws. "I'm not one for cramped places. Heysha likes them, I don't."
Falling into silence, they both walked along
the duct some distance, peeking through each vent along the way. Finally, they
came to one they could get out of, situated directly above a catwalk. Carefully,
Lukas removed the vent, then jumped from the duct to the catwalk below. Savak
followed, flinching as he hit the metal mesh. It was hard on the paws.
"Come on, let's get down from here," Lukas said.
"There's some stairs over there. Let's go."
Once again, they traveled along a narrow path,
but for a shorter distance. When they reached the stairs, they quickly descended
to the floor. There, they zigzagged between a few empty crates until they reached
a place where they could see the entire factory floor.
The main floor of the factory was mostly empty.
When the plushie company moved, they took a lot of the equipment with them,
except the extremely outdated machines, which were scattered about the floor.
The few dim lights that hadn't burnt out yet were casting enough illumination
for Savak to see a Skeith talking with a pair of mutant Grundos. Savak had learned
of Grundos from Heysha yesterday. She didn't say much about them except that
they were weird, and were once enslaved by someone called "Dr. Sloth". Seeing
these Grundos now, Savak had to wonder…
Apparently, Lukas was thinking something similar.
"Grundos!" he said. "I haven't seen a Grundo that size in years!"
As Lukas evaluated their position, Savak was
distracted by a subtle noise. It was a little muffled, but he could swear it
came from behind them. Looking over at Lukas, he saw that the Kougra was far
too intent on the Grundos to have heard anything. It was left up to Savak to
find out what it was.
Crouching down low, the Lupe moved silently back
to the catwalk stairs. As he approached, he saw a shadow descending to the floor,
step by step. Savak quickly dodged behind an empty crate, peeking out to watch.
The shadow's form and movement seemed familiar, but dim lighting can always
pay tricks on you. As the shadow approached, Savak crouched down to spring.
When the figure moved past the crate, the Lupe jumped, knocking the intruder
to the floor with a muffled yipe! Standing above the figure, Savak's expression
of hostility quickly faded into surprise as sight and smell merged together
and formed an image of the last person he expected to see in the factory.
"Heysha!" Savak whispered harshly. "What are
you doing here? How did you get in?"
The blue Lupess looked up in surprise. "S-Savak?"
She said. "Um…Hi. How did you know I was here?"
"You weren't too subtle in your approach," Savak
replied. "Now answer my question. What are you doing here?"
"I…I saw you and Lukas leaving," Heysha admitted.
"I wondered where you were going, so I followed…Can I get up?"
For a moment, Savak just stood where he was,
the fur on his back bristling with an unsatisfied hostility. Finally, without
a word, Savak backed off and sat down while Heysha got to her feet.
"Lukas isn't going to like this," Savak said.
"Let me handle that Kougra," Heysha said. "I
know how to get on his good side."
"Oh really?" Lukas asked. Both Lupes looked up
in surprise as the Kougra padded over. The expression he had was not pleasant.
"Princess, did I say you could come along?"
"No," Heysha replied. "But you didn't say I couldn't
"She does have a point, Lukas," Savak put in.
The look Lukas gave him made him fall silent.
"Heysha," the Kougra said, turning back to the
blue Lupess. "You shouldn't have followed us. I don't know what's out here."
"You want me to go home, don't you?" Heysha asked
"I wish you could," Lukas said. "But you could
have been seen coming here. If I let you leave, you might give us away." He
suppressed a sigh. "You can stay, but you have to do everything I tell you to
When Heysha nodded, Lukas went back to the crate
he was hiding behind earlier. Savak turned to Heysha and nudged her playfully.
"Are you on his good side yet?"
"Oh, be quiet, Savak," Heysha said, walking to
Lukas's crate, and brushing her tail across Savak's nose along the way.
When Savak walked over to the crate, he arrived
in time to see the Grundos and the Skeith walk off to the back of the factory.
"Where are they off to?" Savak asked.
"I'm not sure," Lukas replied. "They said something
about 'the hold', but I didn't catch it all. Maybe they're talking about a big
cage, or a holding cell?"
"Maybe," Savak said. "We'd better follow them."
"How?" Lukas asked. "There's no cover from here
on in. We could be spotted!"
"Uh, guys?" Heysha said. She was ignored.
"Well, we have to know where they're going, right?"
"Yeah," Lukas replied. "But I'd rather not get
caught in the process."
"Guys?" Heysha asked again. Still, they ignored
"Look, the floor is empty! Who could see us?"
"Grundos, maybe?" Lukas pointed out. "Korbats?
Draiks? Who knows what's in the shadows, or the rafters?"
"Guys!" Heysha growled. It got their attention.
"What is it, Heysha?" Lukas asked.
The blue Lupess simply pointed up. "There's a
catwalk directly above us that crosses the entire floor."
Dumbly, Savak and Lukas both looked. Sure enough,
there was a narrow catwalk above them that ran the entire length of the floor.
This was the same catwalk that Savak and Lukas had mounted when they left the
"Well, would you look at that," Lukas said, following
the length of the catwalk with his eyes. "Alright, come on. Let's go back to
With that, Lukas started walking back the way
they came. When Savak moved to follow, Heysha barred his path.
"What's going on," she asked. "This isn't a simple
jaunt that you two are on."
For a moment, Savak only looked at Heysha. Then
he nodded. "You're right, it's not," he said, moving past her. "I'll tell you
on the way."
To be continued...