The master was furious that everything had gone wrong and ready to pick on anyone while free and bond servants were uncomfortably quiet. Those who had dared go past the room where young Blue Tentacles was shut in told stories about how they could hear him crying but none dared to enter. Servants discussed things, some reminded the others what Blue Tentacles had done but many whispered quietly that they thought the master was going too far. Purple listened to his brother servants but was especially careful as he had been with the boy and could easily get the blame for anything. He liked the boy and wished things were different. Many slaves regularly see bad things they can’t prevent but Purple could never quite get used to that. Sometimes Purple told himself,
“The boy doesn’t deserve anything as bad as this so that means it won’t be wrong if I help him to freedom and become free myself.”
Other times Purple told himself, “The boy has done something seriously wrong so he deserves it if he has to leave his home and live among homeless Centaurians with that tramp. And it won’t be wrong if I get freedom for myself as well.”
At first her other sons and daughters came to check on their mother but she warned them to keep hidden just in case that Slithery Tentacled villain took an interest in them as well. Later mother was completely alone except for her servant. When he wasn't thinking about escaping to freedom Purple was attentive to his mistress, the mother of Blue Tentacles and brought her nourishing food from the kitchen. Mother drank water from a ewer as Centaurians are semi aquatic and need plenty of water but she didn’t feel like eating very much. Purple thought of the good food, he thought about the crying boy and part of the time there was that bond between them, then he cleared the food away quietly and put it into a bag that he could tie to his tentacles together with a water container.
Purple made sure no Centaurian could see him and went into one of the service ducts. The mansion had tubes and passages that were part of the heating system, the air conditioning system or any number of other systems. Purple knew his way round the ducts like the back of his tentacles as he was often asked to do work on the diverse machinery there. Purple knew well he would face severe punishment if he was caught but he didn’t think he was taking too much of a risk. After all who would do maintenance that wasn’t urgent when the house was in crisis? Strong tentacles gripped vertical walls where humans would have needed footholds or a ladder and eyestalks pointed anxiously in different directions as Purple tried to make sure he wasn’t seen.
Blue Tentacles started with fear when a trapdoor he didn’t know existed opened in the room where he was imprisoned, then relief was all over his tentacles as he recognized his friend Purple. Blue Tentacles ate and drank greedily but later clung to his friend and begged him not to leave.
“You must let go, little master, if I’m caught we’re both in very big trouble.” Purple was more insistent than slaves usually are. Reluctantly Blue relaxed his tentacles and Purple went back the way he’d come, without food and water to weigh him down Purple could climb faster, he wasn’t sure if he was relieved or sorry when he was too far away to hear the boy crying. A few more times Purple got food for his mistress and a few more times Purple brought surplus food for the boy.
Blue Tentacles asked Purple, “When will this end?”
Purple could only reply, “I don’t know little master, you must be brave, be patient.”
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