25 – Prisoner

Hours later, Kingsley paced back and forth before the bars of a holding cell. Q was behind the bars, sitting on a metal cot attached to the wall with chains. He was quietly eating what Shoy had brought him from a plastic tray. It was only salad. Q hated salad. But he’d rather eat something he hated than starve for the day.

Finally, after minutes of agonizingly loud lettuce crunching, Kingsley spun on his heels and faced Q, his blue eyes staring through the bars at the other man.
“Can Edmond find you?” He asked.

Q didn’t bother looking up, and answered with his mouth half full. “Probably.”

Most questions were useless. Kingsley had been inside Q’s brain. He knew most of what Q knew, and Q hadn’t known he was the Soul Stealer until Kingsley had used its power. There were so many questions Shoy wanted to ask, but he knew Q didn’t know the answers. Why would Edmond erase Q’s memory? And how would he? Kingsley knew that Nymphie had the ability, as he had gone to her to erase Sim’s, but Nymphie was in Dexterity. Edmond couldn’t have been here for long. Maybe a week at most. It would be stupid to erase Q’s memory this late in the game. Before Shoy had even realized, he was pacing again.

Q finished his salad and put the plate and fork on the cot beside him, scratching his head. After a moment of watching Shoy, he finally spoke.
“What do you want with me, Shoy?”

The ex-Monte Criston stopped and stared at the Talvian. “How do you know that name?”
Q shrugged, refusing to answer.
Shoy threw himself on the bars, hands gripping them.
“I never told you that name!”

Q looked away, as if uninterested, casually tapping his tail on the cot like a contented cat. Shoy grabbed the keys to the cell, unlocking Q’s hastily and rushing at the Talvian, grabbing his shirt collar and slamming him against the wall.
Q winced and closed his eyes. The sunglasses were one of the objects he wasn’t allowed to have back, and he didn’t want his thoughts read again.

“Shoy Dantes. Right?” Q smirked. “You lose your temper easily.”
Kingsley’s lip quivered in anger, debating what to do with the man’s smart mouth.
“Did Edmond tell you about me?”

“Nope,” Q smiled.

Shoy smacked his right hand in the middle of Q’s chest, throwing out a surge of ki into Q’s body. Some of it was negated by Q’s limiter, but most of it pulsated through the Talvian. It caused great pain and would rattle the kid’s insides.
Q froze for a second before gasping and coughing up a bit of blood.
“A ki master…?” Q hoarsed.
Ki masters were people who had studied the flow of ki well enough to use it separately from their resonance souls. It was something Shoy had taken the time to do while finding himself after leaving Monte Cristo.

“Quit being such a smartass and tell me what you know,” Shoy grunted.

Q hung his head and gave a light cough. “You know everything I do, Possessor. That’s the whole point of your power, isn’t it?” Q grinned.

Shoy yanked a few hairs out of Q’s tail. Q howled with pain in response.

“I told you before, I’m not going to play this game with you,” Shoy whispered harshly.
He’d come too far to fall victim to some stupid mind game.

After a few heavy breaths through his nose, Q offered an explanation.
“That wall was a two-way mirror,” he rasped, referring to the wall in the mind that separated the possessor from the victim. “You searched my memories, I searched yours.”

Kingsley stepped back. “That’s impossible. I would’ve felt–”
Q burst out laughing.

“Seriously?” Q scoffed. “Has any possessor ever been inside of a Soul Stealer, Shoy? Has any research been done on the effect of the souls being inside of him?” Q opened his eyes, green orbs piercing directly into Shoy’s blue ones.
“Because I don’t recall Resonant Philosophy ever having a chapter about that.”

Shoy’s eyes narrowed, and he took the plastic fork from the plate and stabbed Q’s chest with it.
Q yelped while Shoy turned around and stormed out.

A twenty five year old was intimidating him.
This stupid Q was freaking him out.
Nobody did that.

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