Newly escaped from the strange dungeon in which they’d been falsely imprisoned, Snip, Snap, and Krash are determined to cease the work of the evil Faders. They – who are so emotionless and colorless that the homicidal trio can’t possibly imagine them as people – condemn the Faders because they are so mutable they blur and blend together. Having been wrongly captured and locked up themselves, Snip, Snap, and Krash intend to stop the same fate from falling upon others of their kind.

Snap scurried down the hallway. Alarms were blaring, the lights had been cut. Everything was dark, and all he could hear were those bells, his breathing, and his own footsteps. He was on his way to get Krash and Snip. It was time they got out of this dump.

They used to be good. They were good still. But here they were, locked up. This prison meant to keep the rest of the world safe, meant to keep the bad ones in and the good ones out. But they were good. The Faders, they didn’t care anymore. They were locking up good and bad, innocent people were being put in prison for no reason. Some of the prisoners had gone insane from having been in the place so long. It had to be stopped. Mercifully Snap, Snip, and Krash hadn’t been in long enough to lose their heads. They would put an end to this conspiracy.

Snap forced his legs to move faster. He couldn’t afford to be caught; he had to get to Snip and Krash. He had to find them, they worked better together. Their only chance of escape was if they were with each other. His bare feet smacked against the sterile tile floor, the walls surrounding him he knew to be white were pitch-black in the darkness. The lack of light meant the birth of shadows like heavy blankets that draped over him and pressed against his eyes. An intersection of hallways was coming up, it was hard to see past the shadow blankets but he could somehow feel the crossway coming up. There were footsteps other than his own and soon before him in the center where the two corridors crossed a guard appeared.

Snap glared at the Fader, knowing he would have to find a way past him. Snip’s cell was down the hallway that the Fader was now blocking. Snap never stopped moving, speeding towards the Fader and lowering himself to the ground as he got closer. His opponent was mimicking his movements, preparing himself to catch Snap like an athlete catching an incoming ball. But as soon as the ignorant Fader was practically on his knees Snap leapt through the air and over him, skidding and almost falling over when he landed on the other side. He didn’t spare a look over his shoulder as he continued is mad dash down the hallway.

Snap could hear behind him the Fader he’d escaped speaking with some others in an agitated snarl of a voice. He threw his head back and laughed as he careened around a corner. Then it hit him. Krash was nearby. He could feel his aura as strongly as he felt the ringing in his ears, the fatigue in his legs. Snap could smell him too, and if he focused hard enough he could feel the exasperation and the worry Krash was feeling.

He kept running, he could explore his friend’s aura later, now he had to meet up with him. He could feel Krash coming closer. And then he could hear the footsteps. He could squint through the shadow blanket and see the shape of him. Snap’s manic grin moved and took up even more room on his face.

Krash didn’t stop or change direction, he continued on, speeding past him. Snap pivoted and forced himself to go after him. If he went one way long enough, Snap always found it difficult to turn around or change course. But Krash had never been the fastest of them so it didn’t take long for Snap to catch up. Without any words exchanged between them Snap gathered Krash knew where Snip was, it wasn’t good, and they needed to hurry.

With very little effort Snap could feel Snip’s aura crying out with fear, glee, excitement, pain, and rage. It kept fluctuating between five emotions, all of them perilous for Snip in their own way. Snip had never really done well on his own. None of them did, but Krash and Snap were at the very least functional. At the most they felt a bit agitated, restless, when apart. But not Snip, he grew frightened, angry, and hysterical. Heaven help whatever poor soul decided to talk to him while he was alone.

All the sounds he’d been hearing from Snip before were now louder, more concrete, and growing closer. Soon there he was. The scene that met their eyes wasn’t too unusual; they’d seen things like this before when it came to Snip. There was a female Fader lying stiffly on the ground. She lay in a pool of blood that was growing, spreading out across the floor so smooth and red like velvet. A metal cart with two slim shelves was lying on its side; the guards used them to transport medicine to the “sick” prisoners. Now the bottles were lying all across the floor, rolling in blood and their various contents. Syringes were poking into the Fader all over. Her pale skin had turned strange all over, but Snap couldn’t put a claw to what it might be that was different. The stoppers on top of the syringes were all pressed down; no doubt all of their contents had been injected. They were in neat orderly rows up her legs and her arms, her stomach and sides. Almost like a barricade on her body, all of them with the stoppers down. This Fader had probably been dead for a while now, or Snip could have just been quick about it.

Either was possible.

“Snip, stop it, we have to go,” Krash ordered in his usual way. Stiff, abrupt, conscientious, his voice felt like a ruler coming down on your knuckles.

“Just one minute Krashy, just one minute, she isn’t dead yeeeet,” Snip sing-songed where he stood over the body, feet on either side of her head, bent over.

“How is she not dead, Snip?” Snap sloshed through the blood, stopping idly to kick pill bottles aside as he came to stand near the Fader’s head. Then he saw it.

By some strange miracle or curse this Fader was in fact still alive. But just barely, or maybe far too much. Her eyes were moving, skittishly back and forth, up and down, sometimes focusing on Snip, and then suddenly on Snap, her mouth was wide open and overflowing with pills. Again Snap’s gaze was drawn to the syringes; he clacked his teeth and eyed Snip.

“What were in those syringes, Snip?”

“I dunno, but the first two made her twitchy, next four made her fall down so I could put in the rest from the box,” Snip giggled, “Now I just have two left, two left, two left, Snap!”

Slowly leaning down, Snap watched Snip align the ‘last two’ with the Fader’s panicked pupils, the needles pressed through them like they were jelly. The eyes, so frantic before twitched and moved against the needles, inadvertently slicing the eye around them until a beautiful asterisk star was filled with blood and then Snip pushed the stoppers down. The odd blue liquid went in and bubbled to the top with the blood making it fizz and turn sludge like black. The eyes stopped moving.

Snip giggled, clapping blood soaked hands until droplets flew through the air and dotted Snap’s lips. Krash stared at them both in exasperation.

“Now she’s dead.” Snap declared pointedly to Snip.

All three of them whirled around, their ears pricked at the sound of even more footsteps. A group of four or more Faders had come barreling around the corner a way’s down. But they’d been seen.

“The baddies are coming…” Snip murmured, his previously happy voice gone low, rattled with fear.

“Let’s go.” Krash ordered, brusquely nudging Snip’s shoulder, herding him down the hall.

“Make him keep going, no distractions.”

“Snip, c’mon!” Snap shouted, grabbing Snip by the elbow and dragging him down the hall, trying his best to send some of his own calm to his friend. Krash was following behind them, keeping an eye on the Faders. They heard them on come sprinting down the hall only to screech to a halt.

“What is this?!”

“Oh my god!”

Snap let go of Snip’s arm, there was no need now. The joy radiating off of him was infecting the three of them it was so strong.

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