Interlude: After the Ordeal

From the Story Arc: Homecoming

Previous Story in the Arc: Citizen Bear by Re-Bear (Monday, May 11, 2020)

(posted Monday, May 11, 2020)

Pavel looked up from his beer at Rusty’s Hole, King’s Row’s worst dive bar. Svetlana downed another vodka, and sneered at him.

“Do you know why you’re a hero, Pavel?”

Pavel shook his head.

“It’s because you were created in a Crey lab in Paragon City. That’s the only reason. You have no virtuous ideals, no concept of goodness outside of your own pleasure. If that facility was in Grandville, you would be a stooge for Recluse, although you were a perfectly useful idiot for Recluse anyway. If you were a Praetorian, you’d probably be some insufferable douchebag businessman. Basically, the only reason you’re not in the Zig is because the CCCP rescued you.”

Pavel sighed heavily and finished his beer. “Says you, Sveta, what of you?”

Bejouled laughed. “I’m in the Isles because I enjoy hurting people, and I fight for Vanguard because they pay me to hurt Rikti. I’m pretty simple.”

“Then why did you come and get me, give me the opportunity to hop dimensions with you?”

Sveta shrugged. “You were the only tie to the old life I still had. I guess it was hope, hope that you would appreciate the chance to reinvent yourself, avail yourself of the opportunity. Find something to believe in beside yourself.”

“As if you’re one to talk. You’re living the same past you did before.”

Sveta stared into the bottoms of her empty shot glasses. “I guess reinvention is harder than it seems.”

Bear nodded slowly and ordered another round, just as he had so many times before.