Holy Terrors of NegaSeattle
rating: +16+x

PILOT EPISODE

EXT. WOODS - NIGHT

An empty, narrow trail winds through a dark Pacific Northwest mountain forest.
It’s nearly silent.

A bicycle suddenly RATTLES down the path at breakneck speed,
throwing up greenery and dirt in its wake.

On the bike are three teenagers. A screaming bespectacled boy sitting on the handlebars,
a sharp-faced girl standing on the back pegs, and the driver, a coily-haired girl
focusing on the trail as she pedals. This is KENTA, RAI and ROSIE, all 16.

Behind them, flashlight beams cut through the trees, throwing long shadows over the underbrush.
Men shout indistinctly behind them.

RAI
They’re getting closer-

KENTA
CAN YOU SLOW DOWN?!

ROSIE
We’re almost there! We’re gonna make it!

KENTA
We’re gonna make it into an early grave, that’s where we’re gonna make it!

RAI
It’ll be an earlier one if they get us first!

ROSIE
The road!


The woods clear in front of them, the trail taking a short, steep drop onto the street below.

RAI
YES!


An unmarked, black courier van suddenly screams to a stop directly in front of them. The three SCREAM-

CUT TO BLACK


INT. INTERROGATION ROOM - NIGHT

Rosie, Rai and Kenta sit on one side of a simple metal table. They’re a mess; clothes dirty,
exposed skin scratched up, twigs and leaves in their hair. Kenta is leaning back in his chair,
blood streaming down his face from his nose. His eyes are already beginning to show bruising.
Rosie unties the bandana from around her neck and hands it to him.

ROSIE
…Sorry about your nose.

KENTA
(nasally)
It’s fine. I’ve uh- had worse.

RAI
Have you?

KENTA
(tearfully)
Not really.


The three look up as a door opens. A man and a woman, both clad in nondescript suits,
enter and stand by the door. The three kids watch them nervously as the man looks at them
and makes three marks on a clipboard.

MAN
Five point four, sixteen point four, thirty-two point four.


The woman looks over the clipboard and nods. The two silently leave the room, leaving them alone again.

KENTA
…What do you think they're gonna do to us?

RAI
They're not gonna do shit to me. I'm not scared.

KENTA
Rosie?

ROSIE
I'm thinking.

RAI
Can you think faster?

ROSIE
I'm thinking as fast as I can!


The door lock clicks.

A man walks in. 5 o’clock shadow, hair a little overgrown. One half of his face is scarred with
an otherworldly fractal-like pattern, his left arm missing above the elbow.
His left eye is a solid black prosthetic. He might be handsome if he weren’t so scary. WATTS, late 30’s.

Watts slowly drags out the metal chair opposite the three teenagers,
not reacting to the agonizing SCREECH it makes against the floor.

He sits down heavily, slapping a manila folder onto the table.

WATTS
I only have one question.


Rosie stares him down.

The other two exchange a glance.

Watts leans closer menacingly.

WATTS
What time is it?


Rai and Kenta look confused. Rosie's stone face doesn't let up.

Watts glares at them. Slowly, Kenta glances at his watch.

KENTA
It's- um, it's three fifteen?


Watts drops his head into the table with a loud THUNK.

WATTS
THREE FIFTEEN. Why are you doing this shit so early?


Kenta grimaces, ashamed. Rai rolls her eyes. Rosie's face is unreadable.

Watts pries himself off the table, running his hand down his face.

WATTS
It's SUNDAY, you little psychopaths, what's WRONG with you?

KENTA
Sorry, Mr. Watts…

RAI
Hey, no, I'm not sorry for anything. We didn't do anything wrong.

WATTS
Oh no?

RAI
No! We were just-

WATTS
You were shooting off fireworks in the old water tower.


Rai opens her mouth, then closes it. Caught red handed.

WATTS
Come on, kid. You know we go through all the mail.
Nobody in the world orders this many Roman candles.


Kenta shoots Rai a look.

KENTA
Told you we should have split the order…

WATTS
I want to go back to bed. So… four weeks probation.

KENTA
(Horrified)
Four weeks?!

RAI
(Pleasantly surprised)
That's it?

WATTS
And no more blowing things up in the quarry.

RAI
(Horrified)
What?!

KENTA
But it's midterms in four weeks!

WATTS
That sucks. Should have thought of that before you
got me dragged out of bed at the ass-crack of dawn.


He waves a hand toward the door.

WATTS
Go home. Class starts at seven, we'll iron out the
details tomorrow. I mean- later today. Ugh.


The three stand up and make for the door as Watts spreads some of the papers out on the table.

He shouts out the open door.

WATTS
And can somebody out there get this kid some ice?
Or a tissue or something?
You all drove him all the way back here like that? Jesus…


Rosie is last out the door, keeping her head down.

WATTS O.S.
Nope. Not you.


Rosie freezes in the doorway.

WATTS
Talkin' to you, Hatcher. Sit down.


Rosie, still stonewalling, sits back down in the center of the three chairs.
Watts sighs, shaking his head.

WATTS
So you're the little ringleader of this operation.

ROSIE
Well, the others-

WATTS
That wasn't a question.


Rosie stares silently at him. Watts stares back. He taps a finger on the papers.

WATTS
Do you know who this is?


Rosie answers without looking.

ROSIE
My predecessor, Dr. Rose Hatcher One, the original-

WATTS
Wrong. Try actually reading them.


She looks down.

Paperclipped to some documents are two photos. One of a frightening angular
platinum-blonde woman in a lab coat, the other a broad-shouldered man in black tactical gear.
Rosie's neutral expression falters as her eyes spark with recognition.

WATTS
This is Dr. Raiden Key and Special Agent Kenta Fukushima.
The Point One versions.

ROSIE
It's so weird to see them… old.

WATTS
You should think about letting them get that way.

ROSIE
I'm not endangering them. I've never forced them to do anything.

WATTS
You have an influence over them. You're a leader,
maybe even more than your original. That's power, Hatcher.
You need to learn how to use it before one of you gets hurt.

ROSIE
They're their own people. I don't make choices for them.

WATTS
You know your whole brick wall schtick doesn't work on me, kid.
If you really didn’t care, you wouldn’t have let Kenta bleed
all over your scarf thing.

ROSIE
Don't worry, I'm not going to break any of our shiny new clones…

WATTS
Oh, knock that off. I'm trying to be sincere with you here.


He meets her gaze and holds the eye contact.

WATTS
You're smart. So don't be an idiot.


Rosie doesn't waver for a second.

Watts breaks first, gathering up the files.

WATTS
That's all I got. Go to sleep so you can get something
out of class tomorrow.


Rosie stands up and heads for the door.

As she leaves and her back turns to Watts, a guilty frown flashes across her face.


INT. FOUNDATION OFFICE - NIGHT

Rosie walks down the narrow, fluorescent-lit halfway toward the glass doors of the building.

Emblazoned on the doors, visible from the inside, is a stark circular logo.
Kenta and Rai are waiting for her. Kenta holds a bag of ice to his face.

ROSIE
You waited?

RAI
'Course we waited. What did Watts want?

ROSIE
Same old thing about responsibility and the
"future of the Foundation" and whatever.

RAI
They really have one speech, huh?

KENTA
I feel bad.

ROSIE
Don't. He can handle it.

RAI
God, you're gonna be a terrible hitman.

KENTA
I'm not going to BE a hitman. I’m gonna be a Special Agent.

RAI
Same difference.

KENTA
Ugh. What are we even going to do for the next four weeks?
There’s nothing to DO here.

ROSIE
Don't worry.


She pushes the glass doors open into the night, a smile finally breaking across her face.

ROSIE
I have a couple ideas.


MONTAGE:

1. A harsh alarm rings. Rosie slams her hand down to silence it.

2. Rosie in a tank top and shorts, doing pullups on a wall-mounted bar.

3. She shoves books into a bag: Advanced Physics and Hamlet and Single-Source Thaumaturgical Exploitation.


INT. HOUSE BUCHANNAN CLASSROOM - DAY

Rosie is asleep at a desk, head resting on her arm.

TEACHER OFFSCREEN
HATCHER.


She starts awake. A few kids snicker quietly. She blinks, shaking her head.

TEACHER
Late night?

ROSIE
Sorry, ma'am.

TEACHER
Moving on.


The classroom is the open living room of a small house. Rows of desks face each other,
an aisle down the middle. Various teaching materials are hung on the walls and stacked in corners:
posters, textbooks, scientific equipment. Intermixed are strange devices and machines
that likely do not belong in any kind of school. One poster on the wall bears an image
of a humanoid black shape and reads “Shadow Entities: 1. Ignore, 2. Leave the area, 3. Report quickly.”

Across the aisle, Rai mouthes the words "Are you okay?" Rosie gives her a thumbs up.

Rosie looks down at her tablet on the desk. On the screen is a simple
illustration of what looks like a pipe bomb.

TEACHER
Can anybody tell me the difference between a
cognitohazard and an infohazard?


Kenta, eye sockets and nose bridge purple, raises his hand.

KENTA
An infohazard affects you if you know about it,
a cognitohazard effects you if you see it.

TEACHER
Not just see it. If you-

KENTA
If you perceive it, right.

TEACHER
If you perceive it. That means sight, hearing…


Rosie sighs as the teacher’s words fade into the background.


INT. HOUSE BUCHANNAN CLASSROOM - AFTERNOON

The kids mill about, shoving their stuff into their desks and packing bags.
Another student (SCOTT, 16), approaches Rosie.

SCOTT
Hey, Hatcher. Heard you did the fireworks thing?

ROSIE
Yuuup.


Scott’s tone is serious, but his eyes glint.

SCOTT
You really shouldn’t be breaking the rules like that.
The water tower is super dangerous.


He subtly holds out his fist. She taps it.

ROSIE
I’ll keep that in mind. Thank you for informing me of the danger.


He grins as he passes.

SCOTT
Glory for House Buchannan.

ROSIE
House Venture can suck it.


Rosie hangs back, scanning a bookshelf near the door. She pulls out a book and flips through it.
The pages are printed with different maps of the same area. She drops it into her backpack.

KENTA OFFSCREEN
Rosie!


Rosie throws an arm over Rai and Kenta’s shoulders as they appear behind her,
the three of them walking out together.

ROSIE
You guys ready to go?

RAI
Onward to our punishment…

WATTS OFFSCREEN
Oy. Delinquents.


Watts stands below a tree on the sidewalk outside the house. A few of the
passing students wave to him, a couple jokingly saluting him. He largely ignores them.

STUDENT A
Hi, Mr. Watts!

STUDENT B
A’s for the Grades God, right Mr. Watts?

WATTS
Yeah, yeah, whatever. Go do your homework.
You three! Come on. We’re going to the Office.


The three kids follow after him.


EXT. TOWN - CONTINUOUS

NegaSeattle looks, on the surface, like any other western Washington small town.
One main road lined with small brick buildings, eventually petering out into
narrow branching single-lane roads leading to tiny houses, isolated among the pines under the gray sky.

But as the four make their way up the street, the differences become clear:
cameras on nearly every building, an armored car parked outside a post office,
most of the townspeople either very old or heavily scarred.
Some of the signs along the street edges have no text at all, just strange, intricate patterns.
Clusters of equipment are mounted on some of the roofs. Every few hundred feet,
a red-tipped Emergency pole with a phone handset mounted on it.

They approach the largest building at the end of the street, an old brick thing
with “TOWN HALL” etched into the stone above the doorway.

WATTS
After you.


Rosie opens the glass front door, the same one she exited the night before.


INT. FOUNDATION OFFICE - CONTINUOUS

Despite the century-old exterior, the inside of the building is updated to the highest standard.
Electric locks, bulletproof glass windows, cameras mounted on the ceiling, business casual everywhere.

Watts gestures them into a conference room.

ROSIE
Don’t you have your own office by now?

WATTS
Ew. No. I don’t want people to know where they can find me.

RAI
I bet they just won’t give him one.

WATTS
I haven’t dealt your probation restrictions yet,
don’t push your luck.


The three sit down at the glass table.

WATTS
Wait here. I have to go get the paperwork.


The second he leaves the room, the three huddle together.

ROSIE
I have an idea. Should be totally probation-legal.

KENTA
What kind?

ROSIE
Exploration.

RAI
NICE.


Rosie pulls the book of maps out of her bag.

ROSIE
We’ll use this.

KENTA
Is that here?

ROSIE
Yup. The whole valley.

WATTS OFFSCREEN
Alright, listen up, you little shits.


Rosie shoves the book back in her bag. Watts doesn’t notice.

WATTS
Here are your parameters. 24-hour motion tracking on doors-


Rai smirks.

WATTS
AND windows.


Her smile drops.

WATTS
Like I said before, Quarry Bomb Club is banned until midterms ends,
even in daylight.


Rosie huffs, folding her arms.

WATTS
Nightly check-ins with your Floor Supervisor,
bi-weekly verbal check-ins with your House Supervisor, me.
And curfew, 9pm.

RAI
Bullshit.

WATTS
I can make it 8, if you want.

ROSIE
Nope! 9 is totally fine, actually.


Rosie elbows Rai.

ROSIE
9 works great for us.


Rai catches on and nods.

WATTS
Kenta? How about you?

KENTA
Works.

WATTS
Alright. Then sign these.

CHURCH OFFSCREEN
Watts.


Watts looks up toward the door, occupied by DIRECTOR CHURCH, early 60’s,
a broad tank of a woman with graying brown hair.

CHURCH
I need to speak with you when you finish up.

WATTS
I’ve got time right now.

CHURCH
Outside.

WATTS
…Oh.


Rosie buries her face in her paperwork, but she’s eyeing their nonverbal interaction.

KENTA
Done.

WATTS
Fast.

KENTA
Yeah.

RAI
Second.

ROSIE
Hang on,


She signs a messy signature at the bottom, pushing it across the table back to Watts.

ROSIE
Here.

WATTS
Great. You’re free for the evening.
I’ll see you all for check-in in a couple days.


The three kids hurry out of the room.

KENTA
What’s in that book?

RAI
Yeah, what’s your “homework” looking like?


Watts follows behind them, slower, rolling his eye. He catches Church’s eye,
nodding toward the door. She holds up a finger, indicating him to wait.


EXT. TOWN - CONTINUOUS

Rosie plops down on a park bench, pulling the book out of her bag again.

ROSIE
Okay, circle up.


The others lean in close as she opens up the book to a map of the area.

ROSIE
This is NegaSeattle.

RAI
Yeah, we know.

ROSIE
I say, that since we’re not allowed to go out at night,
we do something feasible in daylight. Before-9 light.


She jabs a finger onto one spot of the map.

ROSIE
Train tunnel.


Rai snorts.

RAI
There’s no train tunnel. If there is, it’s definitely
collapsed by now.

ROSIE
Yes, there is! Why would there be railway marks
on the map if there wasn’t one?

RAI
Well, there WAS one, but not anymore!
It’s probably just a pile of rocks now.

KENTA
No, it’s still there.

RAI
No way. Says who?

KENTA
Garrison has been there.

RAI
Mr. Garrison lies about stuff ALL THE TIME.

KENTA
He wasn’t lying about this!

ROSIE
Doesn’t matter! It’ll still be fun. And it’s not even that far out,
if we take the bikes we can get back before 9, easy.

RAI
Except your bike.

ROSIE
Yeah, my bike is out.

KENTA
And ours are still at the water tower.

RAI
Yeah, they’re not gonna let us go back out there.

ROSIE
Whatever. I’ll get it cleared with Watts, he’ll let us go.
It’s light out, it’s not like we’re going after dark.

RAI
You ask him.

ROSIE
I will-

DONNA
KENTA FUKUSHIMA THE FOURTH.


Kenta squeezes his eyes shut.

KENTA
Oh, no…

DONNA
Young man, you have some EXPLAINING TO DO.


Approaching them is DONA, late 50’s. She looks extremely exasperated.
Rai claps Kenta on the shoulder.

RAI
Rest in pieces, Kenta.

KENTA
Pray for me…

DONNA
I’ve been texting you ALL DAY.


Kenta stands up and shuffles over to her.

KENTA
I’m sorry, Dona…


She pulls him into a bone-crushing hug.

DONNA
They told me you got injured?! And you didn’t TELL ME?!

KENTA
Hrnk-


She pulls back, looking closely at the bruising on his face.

DONNA
Look at you. What were you thinking? Come home.
Let me put something on it.

KENTA
I’m fine, Donna. We’re supposed to stay in the House anyway.
Motion detection and stuff.

DONNA
Oh, I can set up motion detection.
I can baby-proof the apartment all over again.

KENTA
Alright.

DONNA
Plus, how good can the food in the House be?

KENTA
Not as good as yours.

DONNA
Damn right. Let’s go home.


Kenta goes with her, waving over his shoulder at the girls. Rai laughs.

RAI
You told Griff yet?

ROSIE
‘Course I told Griff.

RAI
What’d he say?

ROSIE
Twenty extra pullups a day.

RAI
Not bad for him. Alright, I’m gonna go back to our room and unload.
You can talk to Watts about our bikes. Want me to take your stuff?

ROSIE
Sure.


She takes their bags and walks off down the street. Rosie stands up
and turns back to the office building.

As she approaches the stairs up to the doors, she stops, listening.

WATTS OFFSCREEN
I’m not sure. Maybe 64.

CHURCH OFFSCREEN
Site-64 wouldn’t have space to accommodate them all.


Rosie creeps toward the corner of the building. Watts and Church are talking quietly in the alley.
She eavesdrops.

WATTS
I’m telling you, we’ve never seen an anomaly
of this scale originate from this Nexus before.
We need to move them until we at least figure out what it is.

CHURCH
Moving the children would be impractical and more dangerous than locking down the town.

WATTS
Church, come on. You know these kids practically
live in the woods. There’s no way you can keep them all
in city limits without locking them up.

CHURCH
We’ll get a team investigating as soon as we can.
Thank you for bringing this to my attention, Ira.

WATTS
I’m not “bringing it to your attention,” I’m telling you
we need to move the kids. For their safety.

CHURCH
(pointedly)
Thank you for your input, Mr. Watts.
But you’re not directing this program.


Church heads for the exit of the alley and Rosie quickly hurries down the street away from them.

As Rosie walks toward the edge of town, her brow furrows thoughtfully.


EXT. FOREST EDGE - EVENING

The sun is lowering over the green mountains. It’s not dark, but it will be soon.

Rosie stands on the back of Rai’s bike as they look over the trail entrance.
They proceed down it, Kenta following behind, carrying a full backpack.


EXT. FOREST - CONTINUOUS

The three ride over the rough trail through the trees. It’s not an easy route,
but they’re clearly accustomed to mountain biking.

KENTA
So I brought snacks, water, a big light in case of shadow entities.

RAI
Pshh. Nobody is afraid of shadow entities.

KENTA
They’re like wild animals, Rai. You don’t have to be AFRAID of them,
you just have to be respectful.

ROSIE
Eventually we’re gonna have to ditch the bikes and walk a ways.

KENTA
Mr. Garrison said the entrance is hard to see
because the area is so overgrown.

ROSIE
You got the tick remover?

KENTA
Of course.


Their travel continues. The woods are dense and vibrant green,
birds screech in the branches overhead.

Rosie taps Rai’s shoulder.

ROSIE
Right here. We’re gonna have to walk,
we need to go this way.


Kenta and Rai lock their bikes to a pair of narrow trees, and they start hiking through the brush.

The sun is going down, twilight setting in. They continue on, talking and laughing and
occasionally stopping to examine the map book.

KENTA
We should head back soon.

ROSIE
Yeah, we probably should.


Suddenly, Rai holds up a hand, shushing the others.

RAI
Wait, sshh-


They stop walking. Kenta slowly reaches into the bag and pulls out his flashlight.

Somebody is speaking nearby.

The three duck down into the bushes, watching down the hill.

Another trail crosses their path, and on it stands Watts, and a stranger wearing hiking gear.

RAI
…Is that a hiker? Like, a normal civilian hiker?

KENTA
That’s impossible, how’d he get out here?

ROSIE
Ssshhh!


Watts and the hiker are talking. Watts looks tense. His voice is indistinct, but it’s clear he’s agitated.

ROSIE
He looks mad…

KENTA
Who IS that?

RAI
Do you think it’s somebody from a Group of Interest?

ROSIE
Maybe it’s something from the Nexus? Maybe somebody got teleported from someplace else?


They freeze as Watts slowly rests his hand on the gun at his hip.

KENTA
…We shouldn't be here.

RAI
Oh my god, he’s strapped-

KENTA
We should go. You guys, we really should go.

ROSIE
No, I want to see what’s happening!


She moves to get a better view.

Her hand displaces a small rock.

It CLATTERS down the hill.

The hiker looks up in their general direction,

Then back to Watts, shouting something.

The three kids huddle closer together, watching.

Watts moves to draw his gun.

In a fraction of a second, the hiker disarms him, tossing the firearm into the brush.
Watts throws up a guard, backstepping away.

The hiker throws a punch, landing it, even from several feet away.

The hiker hits with an impossible amount of force, practically laying Watts flat out on the ground.

Rosie and the others watch, frozen.

Watts jumps to his feet, but the hiker tackles him, pinning him down.

Kenta grabs Rosie by the back of her shirt.

KENTA
(whispering)
We need to go. WE NEED TO GO.


Rai and Rosie scramble to their feet, trying as quietly as possible to back up from the top of the hill.

Rosie looks over her shoulder.

Watts grunts as he tries to push the hiker off him.

The hiker’s hand presses against Watts’ face.

His pinky finger slips under the edge of Watts’ prosthetic eye.

WATTS
NO-!


Kenta and Rai look back at the sound of Watts’ scream,

Just as the force of the hiker’s hand on his face forces his prosthetic out of the socket.

From Watts’ empty socket glows a blinding, flashing array of headache-inducing colors.

The colors reflect in Rosie’s pupil.

All three kids are bowled off their feet, clutching their heads.

Rosie is the first to stand back up.

Her vision swims for a moment, she blinks, eyes focusing.

The illusion of the hiker has been dissolved, replaced by a huge, iridescent monster.

Most of it is a huge, geometric undulate-like skull, facial features replaced with
a mirage-like void of prismatic color. The air hums around it.

Gleaming white and skeletal limbs manifest from the cracked reality around it.
One of these clawed hands, joints bending the wrong ways, holds Watts down
by his head.

The three teenagers stare in horror.

Rai starts to scream.

Rosie slams her hands over Rai's mouth, but not quick enough.

The creature’s enormous head swivels, mind-numbing face pointed directly at them.

Watts sees them too, the color draining from his face.

He uses the distraction, knocking away the monster’s claw and rolling to his feet, covering his cognitohazardous eye with his hand.

WATTS
GO! RUN!


At his direction, the three of them take off into the woods.

The monster SHRIEKS behind them, a high-pitched noise that makes Kenta slam his hands over his ears.

Rosie, Rai and Kenta tear through the forest, thoughts of stealth totally gone.
They reach the bikes quickly, Rai’s hands shaking as she tries to work the lock.

ROSIE
Hurry! HURRY!

RAI
I-I can’t!


Kenta grabs her arm and starts dragging her down the trail,
dropping his backpack off his shoulders.

KENTA
No time, we have to run!


They do. They sprint down the trail.

Low branches scratch their faces.

Thorns catch their clothes.

Kenta trips, sprawling out on the ground before Rosie yanks him back to his feet.

They keep running.


EXT. FOREST EDGE - SUNSET

The three burst out onto the street, breathing raggedly.

Rosie runs for a wide metal pole, the top portion painted bright red.
She grabs the attached phone, ripping it out of its cradle.

ROSIE
EMERGENCY CODE CHARLIE-509! U-unidentified
hostile anomaly spotted, uh- northwest of town, about- um-

KENTA
Two miles?

ROSIE
Like, two miles northeast of town!

OPERATOR
Status?

ROSIE
Three unharmed, but it’s got Watts, please hurry!

OPERATOR
Stay where you are.


MONTAGE:

1. An agent straps some kind of gun to their chest.

2. A heavy black car screams out of a garage.

3. Two teenagers are asleep on a bunk bed. Their door’s deadbolt locks on its own.


EXT. FOREST EDGE - CONTINUOUS

Out of a smaller black car comes an armored figure, approaching Rosie, Rai and Kenta
as they stand huddled together next to the Emergency phone.

AGENT
You three again? This had better not be some kind of-


In the growing dark, she sees their absolutely petrified expressions and her tone softens.

AGENT
Oh. Okay, all three of you, separate. Arms out.


They comply, holding their arms out as the Agent scans them with a small-screened device.

AGENT
Hm. You’ve definitely been exposed to something.
It looks minor, though, nothing unusual for this area.
There’s a team sweeping the woods.
Can you tell me what happened?

ROSIE
There was a-

WATTS OFFSCREEN
That really got you guys, didn’t it?


Rosie slowly turns to look over her shoulder.

Walking out of the woods, down from the trail they came from, is Watts.
He’s partially obscured in shadow.

AGENT
Sir,

WATTS
Real sorry, Agent. This one’s a false alarm.

ROSIE
What-?

AGENT
What’s going on?

WATTS
They got way too close to a shadow entity.
Accidentally. Scared the shit out of ‘em.


He chuckles. Rosie and the others are shocked into silence. The Agent sighs.

AGENT
Ugh. This is why we teach you about these things.

WATTS
Wasn’t their fault. They didn’t see where it was until
they were right up next to it.

ROSIE
Wait, no, it wasn’t a…


Watts steps closer to the group, into the light from the streetlamp.

Rosie’s face pales.

Watts has both his eyes.

She looks back toward the Agent, to see if she notices the faint, iridescent shimmer around his body. She doesn’t seem to.

Rosie closes her mouth tight.

KENTA
Mr. Watts…?


Rai elbows him. The three exchange the same look of terrified realization.

WATTS
Hatcher.


Rosie looks over at him. He hands her the map book, streaked with mud.

WATTS
You dropped this.


She takes it, deliberately not looking into his face.

WATTS
Sorry for the inconvenience. Tch, kids, right?
Take them back to the Buchannan and I’ll explain
to the team when they get back.

AGENT
Thank you, sir.


Rosie, Rai and Kenta follow the Agent back to the car, not daring to look back at Watts.

They pile into the back seat and the car pulls away.

Rai takes Rosie’s hand. Rosie takes Kenta’s.

She turns to look back out the rear window.

Standing under the streetlamp, casting a long shadow into the dark,
is whatever has replaced Watts.

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