Hoenheim and K12 kept Doctor Tau company as he followed Helga’s instructions to create the meat plants, while Witch tended to her shop. At some point, K12 turned around and realized that there was nobody in Helga’s cell. “Where’d she go!?!?” he asked Tau and Hoenheim frantically. Hoenheim let this go on for a little while before revealing that Helga was still in her cell, and had just gone invisible. “You’re no fun…” she complained, decloaking herself.
Doctor Tau had gotten the meat plants ready to be left to grow, when he received a call from the mayor. Jean insisted that the Protectors needed to hurry to his office as quickly as possible, as there was something important he needed to brief them on. Tau was very skeptical, so K12 stayed behind to keep a somewhat-watchful eye on Helga.
When they reached the mayor’s office, Placard breathed a sigh of relief. “Thank goodness you’re here,” he began. “This fly has been driving me crazy! You have to kill it”. The frustrated Tau quickly dispatched the fly with a minute plasma portal. “There, happy?”
“Yes,” replied Placard. “Now to the actual important business. There appears to be a giant monster attacking the downtown waste management center. You must save them”. Our heroes were surprised that there was actually something maybe important to do. Tau opened a portal directly to Francine’s office, and a grey goo began seeping in through the portal. The panicked Tau quickly closed the portal, and opened a new one to send the goo back where it came from. “Well… I guess he’s not kidding.”
Our heroes approached the waste management center (along with Witch and K12) as Francine was fleeing the scene. They first peered into the chemical treatment room from the skylight. The large pool-like vat in the center of the room was empty. Descending into the room, they followed a trail of goo and destruction into the office hall, and to the garbage truck bay, where they saw a large blob devouring some trucks.
Hoenheim approached the blob. In a Michaelangelo-esque scene, the blob extended a thin filament, reaching out to Hoenheim, who reached out and touched it. At Hoenheim’s touch, a green spot appeared, which grew to cover the entire filament, and then the entire blob. The blob now had Hoenheim’s powers.
When K12 approached the blob, the response was a little different. The blob attacked K12. In response, Hoenheim encased K12 in a protective bubble of concrete. The blob began to leave, dissolving its way through the wall.
Removing the concrete bubble from K12, our heroes decided they would have to destroy the blob. A fairly lengthy battle ensued, where successful attacks caused the blob to divide into smaller, weaker pieces, with new pieces gaining invulnerability and powers based on the attack that caused the division. At one point Hoenheim plopped himself into a blob, which appeared not to mind. Also, every single blob exclusively attacked K12. He’s still wondering what he ever did to the blob to deserve this.
Once the blobs were all destroyed, Tau found small green crystals that appeared to be Adamantite in the pools left by the blobs. Tau was confused, however, because there had only ever been records of living things being affected by Adamantite, and the pool of garbage was likely non-living. Tau returned the crystals to a drawer in his lab, to be investigated later.
This distraction finished, our heroes returned to Helga’s cell-room to retrieve the meat plants, which had somehow sufficiently grown in the few hours that passed. Tau gave Helga the remainder of her “payment”, and our heroes were off to the Califarian Wetlands.
The Protectors presented the meat plants to Spike, who sampled one of their meat sacks. He was quite pleased with the flavor, and urged our heroes to plant them. Our heroes complied, but made Spike agree that no more attacks were to happen on the gorillas. Spike explained that with such a tasty source of meat that didn’t need to be hunted, that shouldn’t be a problem.
Once Tau explained to Spike and some of the other crocodiles how to cultivate the meat plants, word came to Spike that Xal’Thuran would soon arrive. Spike was excited, and had our heroes stand in a line to welcome Xal (though Witch stayed off in a corner, cloaked). Soon a large humanoid crocodile approached the group. It locked eyes with K12, and approached him, morphing into a tall human form as he did so. “It’s so nice to see you, brother!” Xal’Thuran proclaimed, embracing our confused hero.
So is Xal’Thuran an Allauron? And what’s up with his shape-shifting, is that an Allauron power? Why can’t K12 shape-shift? And while we’re asking about K12, why did that goo hate him so much? And what’s up with Adamantite making a goo monster out of a pile of chemically-treated garbage? Will Xal’Thuran be able to tell our heroes anything useful? Will the number of questions at the end of these synopses continue to grow? Find out next time on Protectors of Emerald City!