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Mystheur and Skelet's investigation had taken them to the Sufokia Bay Zaap on the trail of Dathura. Their stakeout had just barely begun when something unexpected took them by surprise… What if the temporal anomalies were just the Treechnids hiding the forest?

Sufokia Bay

Near the Zaap

7:02 a.m.

Sitting cross-legged in the dark on his embankment, the individual had been watching them for some time. The two agents from the Office of Frankly Bizarre Affairs had arrived on tiptoe wearing ludicrous – but effective – camouflage outfits. The problem was that they couldn't see anything and were tripping over everything. An F for discretion! And for observation, too, because they hadn't even suspected the individual's presence for a second, bickering like two retired adventurers. Other than that, well… he had to admit that all kitted out with their balaclavas, face paint, and telescopic googles, Mystheur and Skelet looked like real secret agents!

"… But if the story is more than just a story, it means that not only does Dathura exist, but she could still be part of our world!"

"Wow! You're so…"

"Insightful?"

"Gullible! It makes me want to cry…"

That's where we left off... and where Wahn Jolsh had decided to make his presence known:

"ME TOO!"

Mystheur and Skelet turned around, gripped with fear. Nada immediately pointed her dagger in the direction of the individual looking down at them:

"Who's there?"

"Of course he's got a crush on you…" said the scratchy voice in the dark. "He was almost named after the animal, and your hair is almost the same color as the animal…"

"You're Wahn Jolsh, aren't you?" asked Fax, as if he already knew the answer.

"At this very moment, yes."

Dawn was rising and the sun's first rays lit up the shape in the dark, revealing an old man with haggard features but who still looked fairly sturdy. He was wearing bandages on his forearms and a feathered headgear with a beak topped with two large eyes. Like an owl.

"You're going to have to come with us, sir…" said Nada, but she was interrupted by her colleague who had just put his hand on hers to make her lower her weapon.

"Do you know who we are?" continued the Xelor.

"I noticed you, yes. We've been crossing paths lately. You seem very nice and…" (He seemed to stifle a sob.) "I feel so alone! I'm invisible to everyone… even you… you didn't even see me when you got here!" complained the bearded individual who then started sobbing like a child.

An embarrassed silence took root. But the Sram wasn't going to leave it at that without saying something:

"You'll have to come with us, sir…"

"Skelet, wait…"

"Why do you want to take me away? Isn't it nice here?" asked the old man who seemed to have calmed down. "You'll have to excuse me, I've been traveling alone for so long… I've been having episodes of severe melancholy more and more often. It's over now!"

"Are you the one wrote that?" asked Fax, pointing to the Zaap.

"Yes."

"You know that that's a serious offense?" said Nada.

"Serious, serious... Balderdash, I say!"

"What… did he just say?" asked the Sram in surprise, raising her dagger again. "What does that mean? What horrible language is he speaking?"

"'Horrible,' you say… well, I never!"

"'Balderdash', is that a spell? Is that it? Are you trying to kill me?"

"Skelet… you seem a little… tense. Why don't you let me question him?"

"Fine, Mystheur, but as soon as you're done with him, I'm throwing him on the back of my Dragoturkey."

"Okay…" agreed Mystheur as he turned toward this new star witness. "What can you tell us about the names you wrote? Why did you write them backwards?"

"What can I say? Haha… At this very moment that I'm talking to you, adventurers went through the mirror and the Scarecrow is hitting them with his hammer… At this very moment! Don't you see the irony?"

"Excuse me, Wahn, but no, I don't see…"

"How is that possible? When the Scarecrow, the Masked Avenger, the Puddly-who-wasn't-scared first hit a Taur with his hammer… in the early 800s! In more than 150 years!"

"I… I don't follow, I…"

"And even then, I'm talking about Cerpolet, the first Scarecrow! This was Percimol, who was so brave for a Puddly that a statue was built in his honor in 865! Isn't that something? In more than 200 years!!! Oh, I… Oh, my… I'm dizzy… Hold me in your arms, Fax! I feel so vulnerable…"

The old owl jumped down off his perch and into the Xelor's arms who, even if he'd wanted to keep up appearances by staying polite, was suddenly overtaken by uncontrollable sweating. The Sram couldn't help but snicker… and that didn't happen very often!

"There, there… get a hold of yourself!"

"Oh, I'm sorry. You're right… You're too good for me… Where was I? Oh, right!"

Wahn Jolsh wiped his face on one forearm then on the other before sitting back down cross-legged. Fax felt obliged to do the same to get down to his level.

"I'm going to have to leave you soon, so ask me specific questions and I'll try not to get… off track," suggested the old man.

"You won't be going anywhere," Nada stated, while Mystheur gestured once again with his hand for her to take things down a notch.

"'JULITH… LEORICTUS… AGONY… DATHURA… PERCIMOL… and the… CHAMPION OF…' What does that mean?"

"First tell me what you think it means…" teased the vigorous old owl.

"Julith, Leorictus and Agony have dark pasts and are supposed to have died a very long time ago…"

"Yes…"

"Dathura is a character from a legend, and might not have really existed…"

"Try to see what she looks like in your records and what the most recent witnesses say she looks like."

"Very well," said Mystheur approvingly as he took notes. "Next, there's Percimol… I was stuck until now but… I get the feeling all your blathering on contains hidden clues…"

"I express myself most clearly! Only you're too busy making eyes at your colleague and I'm… I'm…"

Wahn was about to burst into tears again, but Mystheur grabbed him into a big hug just in the nick of time. He looked surprised:

"Mystheur, now really… Get a hold of yourself… You're starting to get a little clingy! Let's keep things strictly professional!" said the clearly unstable old man.

The Xelor moved back gently. The look on his face had changed and now contained a tinge of disbelief and annoyance. He even seemed somewhat… disappointed.

"Skelet!"

"Yep!"

"Cuff him."

The Sram rubbed her hands together. She walked the individual at dagger point to her Dragoturkey, hidden a little lower down in a thicket. Hands cuffed behind his back, the odd fellow stared at them.

"I doubt his testimony's worth much, but might as well keep him handy in a cell…"

"You're right, Skelet. I should have listened to you. Yet again…"

"Come on now, you always think about what the best thing to do is and sometimes… you're even right."

"My, my! That's a first, Nada. I'm honored that you admitted that… What? Have I got something on my face?"

The Sram seemed to be staring at him strangely. Fax was unsettled. She stepped forward slowly. He was rooted in place.

"That son of a…"

She took off running. Mystheur turned around and saw only the empty-eyed Dragoturkey. Old Wahn was gone. And there seemed to be strange hand-written inscriptions on the mount's saddle…

To be continued…

If you want to investigate this character further, check out these stories:

  • WAKFU the Series – Season 1, Episode 5: The Magnificent Five
  • WAKFU the Series – OAV 2: Ush

Check out the Eliocalypse: Resonance update now in DOFUS!