I received a mysterious text telling me to go to a dentist’s office and sit in the waiting room if I wanted the chance at an Epic interview. After several of my “Who dis?” queries remained unanswered over the next 10 minutes, I hopped into my deathtrap of a car and complied as quickly as my vehicle would allow. I parked out front, not eager for this to be another one of Danzaburo’s stupid pranks but unwilling to risk a chance of meeting someone interesting to interview, which would be a welcome break from talking to the strictly feeder-caste. Still, I hesitantly eased myself out of the vehicle and tried to scan my environment without an overt display of paranoia.
I walked in and saw that a Sharan was at reception. She seemed eager to talk to me, but I just muttered “I’m waiting for someone” as I plopped down in one of the cushioned chairs in the waiting room. The Sharan ignored my demeanor and tried talking, shamelessly flirting, there may have been a lurid proposition in there but I was not interested in the least. If this was another fangirl manipulation, well… I liked those less than Danzaburo’s tricks. Eventually the receptionist/feeder gave up and scurried back behind the desk as I awaited that which may never come.
My patience was rewarded when I saw a short lizard-like being in a lab coat. The calm demeanor and odd placement caught me off guard as I realized who stood before me: Gobbler. “Are… are you actually a dentist?”
He responded in a voice that sounded very much like a cross between Bobcat Goldthwaite and Sylvester the Cartoon Cat. “Sure! As a young hatchling I’d always dreamt about a way to live my best life. I have always been a brawler, but I knew that wouldn’t pay the bills. So I went to medical school and then entered dentistry. It really is the perfect profession for me, and it truly is self-actualizing. Not to mention what it does for public health.”
“Public Health? Brawling? Self-Actualization? Seems mutually exclusive… I mean, it seems the benefits to dentistry are limited to compensation and having your name on the door. How do you really tie this all together?” I question this, suddenly interested but without any major excitement in my tone.
“So, you see these pearly whites?” He gapes his mouth to show his finely polished teeth. “They’re my money makers… when I brawl, I bite. Need good, strong teeth. Kids love watching me fight, even if the parents don’t really care for me too much. My celebrity serves to promote dental hygiene in general as well as guide people to my practice. Then, when I’ve convinced people to come to my practice, I have a steady stream of income, food and employees!” He grinned, unsettlingly.
“Food? They bring you food?” I ask, suddenly regretting the question.
“Well…” He chuckled with a knowing wink. "Those that look tasty, I eat. Those that don’t look tasty, pay me. Those that look pretty, work for me… well, at least until they figure out that I’m eating a good portion of the clientele. But I’ve got that worked out, too, with Gormek… he often comes and acts like the kind employer who will listen to all their troubles, promise to turn me into the police… then laugh as he eats the meat off of their bones while watching “SG’s funniest raids.”
“That’s… diabolical.” Amazed and disgusted, I could say no more.
“So now you see why I have to advertise and get out there and keep brawling! If I relied on my current customer base, I’d starve!” He cackled. “Anyways, I’m going to get ready for my match… you interested?”
I shook my head, suddenly wondering who had called me there. “No thanks, I’ll pass. My dental hygiene is fine and I sort of think you suck in battle.”
He shrugged with his noodle-thin, yet muscular arms. “Ehhh… to each their own. Hm. Guess I gotta call Khagan.” He nodded toward the Sharan, who started frightened at both of us.
“Why Khagan?” I asked, stupidly.
“He’s a… uhh special Police Investigator who asked me to turn myself in…” Gobbler suppressed a chuckle, dialed the phone and ducked into the patient bathroom adjacent to the waiting area.
The Sharan snuck over to me with a frightened expression. “Look, I don’t have much time, but I called you here. You’re from the outside world, outside of the harsh realm and away from Dark Lord Derric’s iron grasp… You can help me… help us… Four of my sisters worked for this lunatic and they never came home… for awhile I didn’t think anything of it, not after the first three anyway. But four sisters go missing? That’s a trend I can’t ignore.”
“Get out of my face before I call Hawkmoon. She was looking for a sweet little sacrifice last time I saw her.” I said, coolly. If I’m not allowed to play with my food (thanks, SG), I certainly won’t talk to it anymore.
I left before Gobbler could finish his conversation and got in my car.
Gobbler, the Dentist. I guess it made sense and, until now, I hadn’t realized how much sense it made.
The Sharan was half right. It was an interview of an Epic… but it was not an epic interview.