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Trading Spaces

 

 

 

It had been almost a minute since the evil virus Megabyte had been defeated.

It had also been that long since he had returned, in the guise of Guardian Bob, and had since ruined the lives of the sprites who lived there. They had tried to move on, look at the incident as another fight for the free Net, but it just wasn’t true. This wasn’t Megabyte trying to take over the system nor was it him trying to access the Super Computer.

This was much closer to home. Way deeper than anything that had ever happened.

This second seemed like all the others in that minute. Everyone went around as though they had gotten over it, acted like nothing was wrong, while deeply hiding their pain and hurt from the outsiders. It was this second Enzo Matrix had had enough. He just couldn’t take it anymore. He was tired of watching his sister mope around in their apartment and then be Dot Matrx, Command.Com and Dot Matrix, businesswoman, putting any kind of feelings in the back of her processor.

And he wasn’t the only one.

It was as plain as Frisket was red and yellow for everyone to see. Both she and the sprite she loved, were completely miserable. The only good that had come from the whole mess was the fact that Enzo got an older brother out of it. Putting their differences aside, Enzo and his older version Matrix had joined forces to get Bob and Dot back together.

They just didn’t know how to do that.

The young sprite sat in a booth, watching the vidwindows that covered his sister in the booth across from him. He stared as though he could burn a hole through those basic windows she always looked at. He absentmindedly began tapping his fingers, concentrating on burning that hole through those basic windows.

Dot Matrix heard the drumming on the table, knowing it could only be one person. At any other time, it would annoy her and disrupt her work, but seeing as she was just staring blankly at several screens just seemed to get her even more depressed than she already was. She let out a sigh, trying to stop the constant thoughts she couldn’t get rid of.

How could you do that to him? she asked herself. He loved you more than anything in this Net and you go and break his heart like that.

Dot vividly remembered those moments of heartache, as she turned down Bob, the REAL Bob in order to marry his replacement, the very virus himself, Megabyte. The look in his eyes as she chose the other Bob over him could’ve deleted her then, but she thought she was making the right choice, the right decision.

The very moment she had watched her wedding go up in smoke. From that moment on, she second guessed herself, wasn’t sure if what she said was really how she felt or…whatever. She just new she had ruined things.

And then, on top of that, Megabyte gets her again, trapping her and everyone she cared about in the Principal Office. But it wasn’t that, it wasn’t just that. It was how he had changed them, tried to turn them against each other…

Mouse grabbed Bob, while AndrAIa got Matrix. “Calm down!” Mouse exclaimed, trying to keep the guardian away from the renegade.

“How dare you even think I could be Megabyte.” Bob growled.

“Hey,” Matrix defended. “It happened before.”

“Yeah.” Bob muttered, sarcastically. “There seemed to be a wedding going on while I was DYING! How COULD I forgot that!”

“If you had told Dot how you felt…”

“Me? What your sister can do it herself?”

“She asked you to marry her!” Matrix shouted. “You should’ve done it then!”

“Well, at least I didn’t nearly marry a virus!” Bob shouted.

And then everything stopped, as three sprites turned to the side.

No matter how hard she tried, Dot could never get that scene from her head. As much as Bob said he loved her and didn’t mean it, it would always come back to haunt her. Her complete and utter stupidity had lead to the system nearly being taken over again. All because of her.

Sure, they had defeated Megabyte, or rather she had, but still. The guilt just wouldn’t leave her psyche. She had put everyone at risk and when she couldn’t take it anymore, she had lost her cool and explode, nearly deleting herself in the process. Yes, Megabyte was gone, but things would and could never be the same.

Never.

***
Bob lay wide awake in bed, eyes drained of the normal sparkle. Outside, the waning sounds of construction was soon fading into the distance. The guardian turned to see his clock and realized he had been up all night.

Sitting up like a zombie, he sat in bed for a bit, his eyes slowly closing. This was the third night he had gone sleepless. Well, in the last minute, there were tons of sleepless nights, but these three were all related to the construction outside his apartment. He had to admit, the construction crew were diligent, working through the second and far, far into the morning.

They were on orders from the Command.Com to continue building throughout, in order to get the sector back in shape after the battle they had gone through with the ABCs. All that was left was Kits, the very area where Bob’s apartment sat nestled in the quiet. His eyes closed, Bob began drifting into the sleep he had been robbed off. Others in the area had moved out, courtesy of Dot Matrix, but Bob decided to stay.

He lived in the Web for at least six minutes. A little construction wouldn’t hurt him.

His mind drifted to the very sprite in charge of the renovation. Bob knew she was still suffering, blaming herself for what happened. Some part of the guardian still blamed her too, but his love for her had already forgiven the confused nature of her feelings long ago. He just wanted to be with her, but Dot had made it clear…

“Bob, I just can’t right now.” she said. “Things…”

“Listen,” he said. “I understand, I do, but Dot please don’t push me away. Not again. Please.”

“I need some time, Bob.” she sighed, lowering her head and her eyes from him. Even still, he could see the hurt on her face.

“Okay, Dot.” he said. “Take all the time you need.”

And that was the end of it. They hadn’t talked since then and it was driving Bob mad. He wanted Dot in his life, carried a small box with him everywhere he went, hoping she would see the light and he could give the contents of said box. But it never happened. The seconds turned to cycles, and then to a minute. Bob was beginning to think perhaps it was over.

There would never be a “them” or a “Bob and Dot sitting in a tree…” It was over.

 

***

 

Matrix and AndrAIa headed down the sidewalk towards the Diner for breakfast. The game sprite was in good spirits, giving out a smile to those that past her. Matrix, on the other hand, was rather moody, a normal occurrence most seconds, but today he was just…moodier than ever.

“Come on, Lover,” she said, taking his hand in hers. “Are you gonna frown all second? Lighten up. It’s a beautiful morning.”

The renegade just nodded, causing his girlfriend to roll her eyes at him. He was lost in thought again, something that had drastically become a problem for them. True, he was usually lost in thought, but with recent events, he was more so, more withdrawn than she had ever known him to be. And it was starting to worry her.

Matrix paid no attention to his girlfriend’s cheerful blabber. He always got quiet when going to the Diner. He always knew one or the other would be there, but never both. Like his sister, he was shouldering some of the guilt as well. Like everyone, he too had been taken in by Megabyte’s charms and words, causing him to completely forget about the real Bob, HIS best friend, HIS mentor and hero lying a Super Computer chamber, while he and Dot planned for the wedding of the hour.

Above all, Matrix knew this was his fault from the get go. If he had only deleted the virus when he had the chance. He had deleted tons of virals in the games, with no remorse, and when it comes to deleting the very one that put him there, he gets a case of morals and lets him live. And now because of him, he had ruined any chance Bob and Dot at had for being together.

For them to be a family.

The renegade shook his head. He was thinking like Enzo again, something he couldn’t stop. It was actually kind of…refreshing in a way. He had spent so much time trying to be an adult, he forgot what it was like when he was a kid and how he always hoped he, Dot, and Bob could be a family, a real family one second.

“Enzo?”

“Hmmm?”

“You nearly walked past the Diner.” AndrAIa replied, holding open the door.

“Oh.” he said, somewhat confused. Ignoring the head shake she gave him, he went past her and walked inside.

As soon as AndrAIa walked in, she heard the incessant tapping. Looking forward, she saw the small sprite who was making the tapping with his fingers. Enzo wasn’t having any luck. No matter how hard he tried, his just couldn’t get his processor to burn a hole through that vidwindow.

A soft hand covering his made him look up.

“That’s really annoying, you know.” Andri said with a smile.

“Sorry.” he grumbled, moving so she could sit down. He stood on the bench, his head now coming up to Matrix’s shoulder, as the two watched one vidwindow shrink and another one pop up.

“Hi Dot.” AndrAIa called. The young businesswoman waved a green hand above the windows.

“She’s been like that since I woke up.” Enzo whispered to his counterpart.

“Figures.” he said.

“We gotta do something you know.”

“How about sitting down and having breakfast?” the game sprite suggested.

The two looked at each other, as th ough a knowing thought passed between them. Enzo slumped down, while Matrix sat across from them.

 

***

 

Bob zipped along the ground, trying to keep himself awake. He had nearly collided with a pole on the way over, he was so tired. He banked his zipboard as soon as he realized where he was headed. He was only a few feet from the entrance of Dot’s Diner. The guardian stood there, contemplating on heading back over to Al’s in sector 31, but Al’s didn’t have a breakfast special and Bob was hungry.

He sighed, knowing he couldn’t avoid the place all together and headed for the door. He stepped over Frisket, who didn’t even bother to growl like he usually did. Even the dog could see Bob just wasn’t in the mood to be eaten. Matrix was the
first to spot him and noticed he did not look good. Bob made his way over to the table in order to say hi.

He purposefully ignored the back booth where he knew Dot was.

“Bob,” AndrAIa replied, smiling at the guardian. Dot heard the name and peeked over her windows. Sure enough, there was Bob. Ducking back down, she tried to calm her heart, as it flip flopped in her chest.

“Care to join us?”

“Sure, why not?” he said, sitting next to Matrix. “Can’t get the best breakfast over at Al’s.”

“Looks like you need it.” Enzo said. “You look horrible.”

“I’m sure there’s a more tactful way of saying that.” AndrAIa replied.

“Sure.” Matrix said. Turning to Bob, he said, “You look a null just threw up your face.”

AndrAIa shook her head and sighed. Bob couldn’t help but grin. “You think the little one’s bad?” she asked, pointing at her boyfriend. “Live with this one for ten hours.”

“I haven’t been getting any sleep.” Bob confessed. “You know that construction in Kits, makes it hard for me to sleep at night.”

“Man, they’re really working second and night, huh?” Matrix asked.

“Tell me about it.”

“Why don’t you just move?” AndrAIa asked.

“Cause I’ve never been comfortable staying any where else.” Bob defended. “I’m funny that way.”

“So what’re you planning on doing?” Matrix asked.

“I just gotta take it.” Bob sighed. “It shouldn’t be too much longer. I hear they’re moving to the other side of the sector in a few cycles.”

But poor Bob didn’t even last the night.

Later in the second, he and Enzo had gone circuit racing and the guardian had dropped the boy off at the Diner, then he returned to his darkened apartment. He sat on the couch, and listened to the nice quiet that overcame the apartment. The construction crew was on a dinner break and would be for some time, which meant Bob could get a head start on sleeping.

He walked into his bedroom, changed out of his web armor, and into a t-shirt and boxers. He checked himself in the mirror and sighed. Though he still retained one or two scars, his face was that of his youthfulness of hours ago. Though he looked fatigued, his blue and boyish features were still there.

He sighed again, noticing the 0500 shadow that appeared on his chin. He finally got some compromise when it came to his looks. He was once again merged with Glitch, but now looked like his evil counterpart from a minute ago. Dot finally got her “safe” guardian and now, she didn’t even want that.

He shook off his woman trouble and turned back to the bed. Not bothering to turn back the covers, he just fell over on top of it, grabbing his pillow and burying his head in its softness. He wasn’t sure how long he had been asleep, when the sound of drilling began. Checking his inner clock, he realized it had only been a millisecond, a freaking millisecond.

He sniffed and and closed his eyes tight, trying to block out the noise drifting to his window. But even as he tried in vain, he knew he wouldn’t be sleeping this night either.

 

***

 

The next morning, Dot was hard at work, putting everything she felt and worried about in the back of her processor and was back in the Principal Office, doing her duties as Command.Com. Phong, the system administrator, took it as a sign she was emotionally over wrought. But, there was nothing he could do. He couldn’t push her to come to him, she would have to come on her own accord.

All he could do was support her and be there when she needed him.

Right now, they were looking over damage and tear reports coming from every sector. It was minimal, but still needed to be fixed. Dot looked at the tear reports coming from Wall Street and Baudway, knowing she would need Bob in order to fix them. Mouse and Ray had left a few cycles ago, Dot assuring Mouse she was fine and would be fine.

She could really use Ray right now.

She just couldn’t face Bob. She had broken his heart, that was plain to see and even she had doubts about whether he still loved her. Truth be known, she was crazy about him, always would be, but knowing she had betrayed him left her cold and her heart in pieces. Phong looked over her shoulder and could feel her resistance at calling Bob.

“Perhaps I should call our guardian and notify him of this.” he said.

“No.” she said, managing a smile for his sake. “I’ll do it, Phong. I’ll be in my office if anything comes up.”

“I shall notify you if something does.”

Dot took the report with her into her office and closed the door. She sighed, knowing what she needed to do. Walking to her desk, she sent out a vidwindow to Bob, who she figured was still at home. Sure enough, his haggered blue face appeared before her, looking incredibly tired and sad.

“Another rough night, Bob?” she asked, gingerly. The blue guardian just nodded. “I’m sorry to bother you then, but we’re having a problem with tears in Wall Street and Baudway. You will take care of it, won’t you?”

Again, Bob just nodded, tiredly.

“I’ll also need to come over tonight, to go over these files.” she continued. “You don’t mind, do you?”

Bob shook his head.

“Good. I’ll see you tonight then.” She then closed the vidwindow.

Bob sighed, really not hearing anything she had said. Just as he closed his eyes again, they popped wide open. Did she just ask him over tonight? He quickly brought up a vidwindow to Dot, who was surprised when he called back.

“Did you just invite me over?” he asked.

“Yes,” she said. “To go over the reports from today. Weren’t you listening?”

Bob stared at her and blinked. “Yes.” he blurted. “Yes, I…I heard you. So…so like what? 1900?”

“That’ll be fine.” she said, looking down at her file. “See ya then.” she again closed the connection.

Bob stared blankly at the small space where the window had been. He shook his head, wondering if he should call back, ask if she had really meant it. He was sure he was suffering from fatigue and lack of sleep, so surely he couldn’t have heard her right.

A small smile of triumph came to his lips. There might be hope for them after all.

 

***
 

Later that night, an almost exhausted Bob came over to the Diner and headed downstairs to the small apartment. Knocking
on the door, he did a breath check, straightened out his uniform and had a smile waiting as she opened the door.

“Hi, Bob.” she replied, opening the door wider so he could enter. “Thanks for coming over. I really want to get all of this stuff done by the end of the cycle.”

“As is the job of command.com.” Bob joked, heading for the sofa and taking a seat. The comfort of the chair was almost too much for the guardian. He could feel the sleepiness and awaiting dream state starting to take hold of him, but he had to stay awake. Hopefully this meeting wouldn’t take too long and then he and Dot could discuss…other things.

“All right.” she said. “Let’s get to it.”

The time seemed to go by, at least to Dot, as she checked and re-checked status reports and the like. It was a hard job to do, but she was getting use to it and was enjoying it. It was just like running the Diner. Hard work that greatly paid off. Bob, on the other hand, didn’t see it that way. The time seemed to dwindle and the more they went over stuff, the more he sank deeper into the confines of the couch, the sleepier he became. It was so quiet right now. Enzo was off to bed, probably sleeping soundly and Dot…well her voice was like music to Bob’s ears.

He couldn’t help but be lulled to restful sleep.

“So I was thinking Wall Street would be the first place we check for tears again.” she had been saying. “What do you think?” Dot waited for an answer, but non never came. “Bob?” she called. Getting frustrated at his lack of attention, she turned to yell at him, but stopped.

There, looking relaxed, was Bob, sleeping contentedly next to her.

Dot couldn’t help but smile at the sight, though she also felt extremely guilty. It had been on her order for the construction crews to get going at night and she did foresee the problem, but she never thought Bob would actually want to stay, especially when the major construction was now on his side of the apartment building.

Standing, she went to the bedroom to retrieve a blanket and then draped it over the guardian’s sleeping form. She stood and watched him sleep for a few nanos, before sitting back down and going back to work.

 

***
 

The next second that Bob awoke, he realized he had just had the best sleep in his life or at least in the last couple of seconds. He stretched and yawned and looked around in confusion. This was not his apartment. It took a couple of nanos for it to register, but soon he gathered he was still in Dot’s apartment.

He then heard the slight morning scuffle of trying to get Enzo off to school and Dot’s nagging him to get up and get dressed. He soon heard approaching grumbling, as the boy, still dressed in his pajamas, came out for a glass of juice.

“Ugh, just once I’d wish she’d lay off.” Enzo growled under his breath. “Of all the basic and ridiculous things I could be doing…you gotta go to school, Enzo. It’s helpful, Enzo…blah, blah, blah.”

“Hey Enzo.” Bob replied, as the boy passed him.

“Hey Bob.” he said, not breaking his typical morning rant. “Blah blah school, blah blah learning, blah blah…” The rant continued as the boy entered the kitchen. Within a micro, Enzo was back in the living room, staring at the blue guardian.

Enzo looked around, as if he was in a dream. “Bob.” he said.

“Hey.”

“Bob.” he repeated. “You’re…when…how…”

“I stayed the night.” he answered.

“Really.” he said, before turning back and going to the kitchen. Bob shrugged, surprised the boy hadn’t exploded yet. Oh well, he thought. Maybe he’s just outgrow…

Suddenly, a blur of green was on top of him, scaring Bob half to deletion. “OhmyUser, Bob, Ican’tbelieveyou’re here!” it shouted. “IthoughtIwasinthewronghouseor something, butno, hereyouareandhereIamandthere’s Dot…” Giving a nervous laugh, the boy murmured, “Hiya Dot.”

Dot stood, arms folded, staring at her little brother. “Breakfast.” she said. “Now.”

“Bye Bob.” the boy said, jumping off Bob and running into the kitchen.

“That boy.” she muttered, shaking her head. “And to think, now there’s two of him!”

“Hey, thanks for letting me stay last night.” Bob replied.

“No thanks needed.” she said. “I know you haven’t been sleeping and…well, you need your rest.”

“It was great, believe me.”

The two were silent, just gazing in each other’s eyes. “Bob…” she started, turning away. “I’ve been thinking. It’s not right for you to be staying at the Eight Ball. I know you’re not sleeping and well…I think you need to stay somewhere else.”

“I’ll forgo pride and agree with you.” he chuckled. “But where? I heard you say all the spare rooms at the hotel were filled.”

“They are.” she sighed.

“So where’s that leave me?”

The two were quiet again, each trying to think of some sort of compromise. “You could…stay here.” whispered Dot.

Bob looked at her, as though he didn’t hear what she said. She looked up, meeting his gaze, and quickly said, “On the couch, of course.”

“Of course.” he said, nodding. “Are you sure?”

“Bob, you need your sleep.” she said. “Besides, it wasn’t fair of me to have construction start right outside your window. Think of it as…an apology.”

Bob smiled and held out his hand. “Then I accept your apology.”

 

***
 

Meanwhile, somewhere in the Principal Office, a similar discussion was taking place. Matrix lay on his bed, staring up at the ceiling, while his girlfriend paced the floor. “We just have to, Enzo.” she said. “We have to.”

“I know, I know.” he muttered. “But where, Andri? We both said we wanted to live in Kits, but it’s kinda hard when there’s no where to go. Especially with that construction.”

The game sprite whimpered and fall next to her lover, face down on the mattress. “This really isn’t that bad, is it?” Matrix asked.

AndrAIa just looked at him.

“Right.” he said. “Phong was cool enough to let us stay, Andri.”

“I know.” she sighed, turning towards him. “But we can’t stay here forever. Besides, I want our own place. Just the two of us. Or…three of us.” She gave him that look, which made him melt and smile.

“I know.” he whispered, stroking her cheek.

Just then, their door busted open and then slammed, revealing an out of breath Enzo behind it. “What are you doing?” Matrix asked. “Shouldn’t you be in school?”

“No time.” he wheezed. “Big thing. Really big. Totally big. Bigger than you.”

“Then it must be big.” AndrAIa joked. “Come over here and have a seat and tell us what’s going on.”

Enzo just stood there, trying to regain his breath. When he finally got enough in order to say something, he continued.
“Bob…moving in…with us.” he stuttered.

Both AndrAIa and Matrix looked at him.

“Okay, that ain’t funny.” replied the renegade. “Not at all.”

“No joke.” huffed the boy, sitting down on the corner of the bed. “True live story as of this morning. Heard it myself AND it was DOT who asked.”

Again, the two just stared at him.

“No really.” AndrAIa said. “This is really not funny.”

“Guardian honor.” Enzo said.

“Yeah, well that proves it.” Matrix smirked. “You’re not even a guardian.”

“Hey,” the boy said, pointing at his counterpart. “If you’re a guardian, I’m a guardian.”

“And how do you figure that?” Matrix challeneged. “I’m twice your age, stronger, bigger, and I’ve got AndrAIa for a girlfriend.”

“I’m gettin’ there, I’m gettin’ there.” Enzo told him.

“Boys,” the game sprite interjected. “Focus please? Now about this Bob moving in thing…”

“Right.” Enzo replied, continuing his story. “Anyway, I heard this morning, yeah? See, Bob spent the night last and…”

“Whoa!” Matrix interrupted, raising an eyebrow. “Seriously?”

“Yeah.” Enzo said, shaking his head. “On the couch. Anywho, I’m in the kitchen, minding my own business, okay? When Dot asks Bob to move in, because of the construction and everything.”

“Wow.” Andri breathed. “I didn’t think she had it in her.”

“Whadda mean?” her boyfriend asked. “She asked him to marry her!”

“Yeah,” she replied, rolling her eyes. “And that was before the whole my two Bobs, Megabyte cloning, taking over the system thing. Officially, it can be counted as null and void. She almost married Megabyte, you know.”

At the mention of the now historic almost wedding, the brothers shuddered in remembrance. “We will never speak of that again.” Matrix said. Suddenly, the renegade had a thought. “If Bob’s moving in with you,” he started, “Where does that leave his apartment?”

Enzo was about to reply to the question, but then stopped. He looked at Matrix, who looked at him and an idea, though
fairly small at first, began to come to them. AndrAIa too could see the seeds of thought, or rather trouble, starting to form in their processors and right away, she had a bad feeling about it.

“All right, you two.” she said, looking at them. “What’re you conspiring?”

“Conspiring?” Matrix asked, indignantly. “AndrAIa, Enzo and I are not ‘conspiring’ as you so put it.”

“Don’t give me that.” she replied. “I can see that look you both got.”

“AndrAIa, really.” Enzo piped up. “Do we look like the kind of sprites who would ‘conspire’?”

The game sprite didn’t hesitate. “Yes.”

Both brothers looked at her. “Now that hurts.” Matrix said.

“It’s not our fault!” Enzo cried. “Can I help if, say I thought of a plan in which we keep Bob and Dot together so you and Matrix can move into Bob’s apartment? I mean really! I’m just a boy.”

Matrix was about to respond when Enzo’s words came to him. “Enzo, you’re a genius.” he said, a far off look in his eye.

“I am?” Enzo asked, confused. Clearly his throat, he said, “Of course I am! And for the sake of AndrAIa, we’ll just remind her what brilliant idea has just continued my genius. For her sake.”

“It’s what you just said.” Matrix replied. “If we could somehow get Bob to move in permanently, then we could move into Bob’s apartment.”

“No.” AndrAIa said, exasperated. “Now you’re talking crazy. I know you guys want to see them together and all, but stooping this low in order to…to…set them up in a parent trap?”

“A parent…what?” Matrix asked,incredulously. “AndrAIa, this is not a parent trap. This is just two siblings, trying to reunite their wayward…their…”

AndrAIa just looked at him.

“Okay, so this is similar to a parent trap.” he sighed. “But it’s for a good cause! Don’t you want to see Bob and Dot together?”

“Of course I do.” she replied. “But I wouldn’t resort to trickery.”

“Trickery?!” the renegade exclaimed. “How is this trickery? It’s just a simple plan to put Bob and Dot together without their knowl…okay, so it’s a bit like trickery.” He then folded his arms and pouted.

“Must you ruin our scheme?” Enzo whimpered.

“I’m not ruining the scheme.” AndrAIa replied. “I just think there’s a better way.”

“Well then, by all means, girl genius, think of one.” Matrix said, sarcastically.

“You know I can’t think of one!”

“Not so smart now, are you?”

“GUYS!” Enzo exclaimed.

“Look,” Matrix said, slightly calmer. “You don’t have to be involved. In fact, you’ve heard nothing, forget this entire conversation.”

“I will then.” she said.

“Fine.” he replied. “I would just hate for people to find out about that little…incident.”

The game sprite turned to him, glaring at him with suspicion. “What incident?”

“You know,” he said, coyly. “That incident you had in…oh what system was that? Gamamead? Gary? Oh! Gammond!”

AndrAIa gasped in shock. “You promised you would never bring that up again!”
she exclaimed.

“Bring what up?” he asked. “I’m simply saying that…that small…incident could haunt you…if you were…needed for something…”

“That’s blackmail!”

“Now sweetie,” he soothed. “Blackmail’s such a strong word. Think of it as…you’ll be doing something for me as long as I kept this little secret a…okay, so it’s a little like blackmail.”

“Andri, all we want you to do is just keep quiet about it.” Enzo said. “It’s our plan…”

“Scheme.” she said.

Enzo rolled his eyes. “Scheme, if you will, but it’s ours. You just gotta keep quiet about it.”

“Especially from Bob and Dot.” Matrix added. “Which brings something else up. We’re gonna have to keep him there. Listen, if I know Bob and Dot, and thankfully I do, they’ll be having some real second thoughts about this, so what we’ll do is, I’ll talk to Bob and you go talk to Dot.”

“What’ll I say?” asked Enzo.

“You just have to convince them that moving in is a good, no…a great idea.”

 

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