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Timmy the Talking Roach - Leus

"Wake.

"Beethro Budkin. Greetings. My name is... Well, you needn't worry yourself with details at the moment. I have a task for you. It's really quite simple, and you should have no qualms with it. Should you object at all... Well... Let's just hope we won't have to learn what those circumstances would entail.

"Beethro, I need you to do a delving job. What's delving, you ask? You should know, but then again, you probably aren't quite sure of anything right now, so I'll humour you. Delving is, well, delving. You travel deep into dungeons and kill pesky vermin and other threatening creatures that have managed to penetrate and take up residence within. Kings of great wealth are normally your employers. Myself? Well, I am a bit different. I have slightly more... Hmm... "Personal" reasons for wanting this particular dungeon dealt with.

"So how do we feel about this sitation?"

---

One day, Timmy was crawling along the cold, dank dungeon floor. His mother had long since abandoned him in this forsaken room, and he hadn't seem a soul save his extremely boring siblings who spent their time sleeping in the corners. Timmy was different from other roaches, though. Timmy could talk! And Timmy was nice. Timmy was lonely, though. He had nobody to keep him company.

One day, though, Timmy heard a noise. His brothers and sisters immediately arose from their sleep and scurried towards the noise. That's how roaches were: blindly aggressive. Timmy waited to see what happened. Soon enough, he heard squeals and the cracking of metal against chitin carapace. Blood rolled down the corridor and pooled in a corner. Timmy felt the ground shake as something drew near, and Timmy was scared.

A spikey-haired man rounded the corner and saw Timmy. Readying his sword, the man charged. "Wait!" Timmy cried. Confused, the man stopped.

"Did you just say something to me?" he inquired after a brief pause.

"My name is Timmy the talking roach," Timmy explained. "I don't want to hurt you. I am just bored of living in this dreary dungeon alone."

The man looked stunned, but came up with a reply. "I can't remember why I'm here, but I know I'm here to kill you and all your kind."

Timmy's eyes went wide. He gaped as only a roach could. "You... You must be the Great Saviour then," Timmy stuttered.

"The great what?" the man replied.

"You are spoken of often in the Great Prophecies," Timmy said. "I've heard 'them' talking about you many times."

"'Them?'" the man asked.

"That's what I call them... I don't know who they are, but I've listened to them while wandering through their corridors. Come to think of it... They look like you," Timmy stated.

"So they're humans?" the man replied. "Well, I'm Beethro. Beethro Budkin. I'll let you follow me, but can I ask that you always stay at least three paces behind me? Any closer and I may be forced to kill you for my own safety."

"I understand," replied Timmy. "I know how cruel my kind can be. But I assure you I am not like them. I will follow you at a distance. I am just glad to finally have some adventure around here."

Beethro and Timmy set out on their adventure. Many roaches were slain and many doors were passed through. One room was different from the rest, though. In the corner, a queen lie sleeping. Beethro began to advance.

"Wait," Timmy said.

Beethro stopped and looked quizzically at the roach. "What is it?"

Timmy inspected the queen thoroughly. "Mom!" he burst out with finally. The queen awoke at the sound and glanced back at the roach and the human. "Mom! It's me! Timmy!" Timmy said, rushing towards the queen. But instead of welcoming him warmly, she hissed and lunged at him. Being smaller than she, he was knocked onto his back. From an awkward angle, Beethro looked into Timmy's eyes. They were wide and shocked, full of imminent sadness and dismay. Before the queen could cause any more damage, Beethro thrust his sword through her skull. He knelt with a heaving sigh next to her body, disappointed that he'd been forced to kill his friends mother. But he'd learned from their journeys that the two hadn't been acquainted in months anyway.

Beethro helped Timmy back onto his feet, and the two progressed without another word about the situation.

Finally, the duo reached a specific door about which Timmy spoke up.

"This is it. This is their corridor," Timmy relayed.

"This must be why I'm here," Beethro responded. Beethro opened the door, but from behind him, Timmy spotted something peculiar. A rustling.

Suddenly, a goblin darted out from the shadows and headed straight for Beethro's back, a knife drawn. "NO!" Timmy shouted, lunging for the goblin. Beethro spun around, almost avoiding the stab from the goblin. Beethro's right side was slashed open and he bled. He staggered backwards a step, and Timmy bit down on the goblin's skull, crushing it with his mandibles.

There arose a cackling from all around and another goblin stepped up and kicked Beethro in the side. Beethro grunted and dropped his sword, clutching his side. The goblin grasped the hilt of the sword and attempted to lift it, but his frail frame could not support the weight of the sword. He spun himself around twice, causing the sword to be lifted from the stone floor. After whirling a few times, the goblin clumsily released the weapon and it sailed straight for Timmy. The sword pierced his carapace and pinned him to the floor.

"TIMMY!" Beethro shouted. Beethro grasped a loose brick from the wall and clutched it tightly in his hands. The goblin turned to face him, but only in time to meet a projectile hunk of coloured cement with his face. The goblin crumpled to the floor without a sound, and Beethro crawled to Timmy's side. The life in Timmy's eyes had already drained. Timmy had saved his life and Beethro had failed to return the favour. He let out a cry and hugged the lifeless body of his friend as the door behind him slowly opened.

Out stepped two humans, a man and a woman. They stood in silence, seeing their heroic rescuer bent over the dead animal, crying. After a moment, Beethro rolled over between sobs and noticed the pair. At first he tried to compose himself, but realize he was not in the mood for putting on a pleasant face for complete strangers. "Who are you?" he inquired.

"We're the Great Scientists from beneath. And you must be the Great Saviour..." they said in awe.

"I don't know who I am, but if I'm here for you, then let's go," Beethro said between clenched teeth.

"You're wounded," said the woman, stepping forward and kneeling by him. "Let me just--"

"No!" Beethro interrupted. "If I can't even save my friend then I don't deserve comfort. I will tread injurred alongside you. Don't worry. I've already cleared a path from the entrance, so you weaklings won't have to worry,"

The pair nodded.

---

"And after that, not another word was shared between the three of you. Well done, Beethro, though I am sorry to hear about your friend. If it's any consolation, you will have no memory of it later on. I am forced to remove all recollection you will have of this event, though your delving instincts will remain true within you. Good luck to you, Beethro Budkin. I sense promise in your future.

"Now, sleep..."