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"No fishing gear here," Arthur said, smiling as he got closer to the two boys. He stopped walking just a few feet away from the pair and set his bag down on the concrete ground. Henry had momentarily appeared startled as he almost took a tumble over his own weapon, but Arthur saw no fault in such a reaction. He was just happy the two had welcomed him with open arms into their little gathering. It was nice to be in good company.

"I'm guessing that whip's what you got, Henry," Arthur said, looking at the whip hanging at the boy's side. The whip looked dangerous for sure, far more dangerous than anything Arthur had on him, but judging from Henry's display just moments ago, he still didn't have quite a good grasp on how it worked yet. "You should try and be a little more careful with it," Arthur added. He didn't want to see Henry get hurt, or anybody for that matter.

He noticed Jasper taking a look at his paintball gun. "You wanna hold it?" Arthur offered, holding the gun in front of him, muzzle pointed straight down, "It's just a paintball gun. No harm to be done." Arthur's tone was as welcoming as he could muster, but humorless, the oddness of the situation lost on him. Out of the corner of his eye, Arthur could see a fish or two swimming in the water below, just a few inches below the surface of the water. They looked peaceful and content with themselves, happy to swim in the same circles every day as long as it meant safety. To them, today was just another day, living the same life. Arthur didn't feel like disturbing that peace, not today.

"Anyway," Arthur said, posing a more open question to the group, "What do you two plan on doing? Anything in mind, or were you just planning on staying here a bit longer?"

The fish swam in the water all the while, circling each other in the morning light.
~~~~~ Creativity's Burning Pyre ~~~~~



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