Dec. 25th, 2011

"Christ, Lopez," I accused, "you just coughed up Hoggrid."

"That's impossible!" said Lopez, peering anxiously at the fleshy tadpole dangling from the dome of our vacc suit. "Hoggrid died back on the Pestle! I… I ate him!"

"YES," squeaked the tadpole. "ORGANIC MATRIX WAS PRESERVED. SPORIFIED REGROWTH HAS BEEN PROCEEDING IN LOPEZ-TISSUES."

"I don't know how you Betellians like to do things," Lopez said hotly, "but around these parts, friends don't grow as tumors in friends' bodies!"

"NECESSARY FOR CONTINUATION OF LIFE," said Hoggrid. "I EXPRESS GRATITUDE."

"Wow, Hoggrid," I said, "I'm impressed. That was almost lifelike of you. So you've been germinating in Lopez's gut all this time, just biding your time?"

"NEGATIVE," Hoggrid replied. "HOGGRID-SELF EXISTS IN NON-SPATIAL DIMENSION. ORGANIC/MACHINE INTERFACE IS ONLY PROJECTION INTO YOUR SPACE."

"Nice," I said. "Hear that, Lopez? Hoggrid's been projecting into you."

"Shut the hell up," barked Lopez. "So, Hoggrid, how do we get you into your own machine-body?"

"MUST HAVE JAVANITE," piped the tiny Hoggrid-worm. It oozed its way down the back of our helmet on its way to the collar.

"Wait wait wait!" said Lopez frantically. "This Javanite? The Chain of Office? You can't have this; it's spoken for."

"Also, I don't really want you crawling down the back of my… oh jeez, he's doing it." I squirmed as the tiny creature slimed down my nape.

"JAVANITE," squeaked Hoggrid, barely audibly.

"He's going to eat the loot!" Lopez sobbed.

"Let him," I said. "We're busy."

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