Fruitless hunt Edit
Servants no longer reported that they could hear little Blue Tentacles crying and they all supposed he was settling or was too exhausted to cry. The sadist who wanted to marry Blue Tentacles didn’t at all mind prolonging things so it was very much later before any Centaurian checked and found he was missing. Father cursed the staff because nobody had seen the boy escaping and threatened to punish every servant for being lax. No Centaurian considered the service ducts.
So quite belatedly they started a search but assumed that the reluctant bridegroom had run away on his own. Many Centaurians discussed how silly Blue Tentacles must be if he really imagined he could get away like that. They made a thorough search of the mansion and grounds based on how far they thought Blue could have got swimming or walking on his tentacles. Tracking animals were tried but no Centaurian was surprised when the animals couldn’t find a scent. After all it was natural for a Centaurian to go into water and trackers couldn’t follow him there. When there was no scent they concentrated the search round waterways where they thought a young Centaurian could be swimming. Leering Eye Stalks, the suitor who wanted to marry Blue Tentacles was in surprisingly good spirits and entertained himself working out imaginative ways of punishing Blue Tentacles when the lad was caught. Then Leering Eye Stalks entertained himself further forcing others to listen to his inspired plans.
Sad Tentacles, the engineer with a cousin at Lady Violet’s establishment was probably the first to notice that Purple was gone as well. Sad could see as one of the fugitives was an adult both stood a good chance of getting away.
“This time we slaves will win and the master will lose.” Sad thought as he raised his head and straightened his tentacles slightly. First Sad went to check on his mistress, the mother of Blue Tentacles was shaking her tentacles with agitation as she had found out what Leering Eye Stalks was planning. Sad felt enormous compassion for his mistress but didn’t dare to tell her that Purple had escaped as well. Slaves understand well how people or Centaurians can be coerced into doing what they would very much rather not do and the mistress’s other children were hostages. Sad feared Mother might reveal anything she knew to protect those other children. Mother was throbbing with fear as she thought what the leering wretch would do to her son later and it broke the servant’s heart further when he had to leave without telling her there was a good chance the boy would escape and none of that would happen.
Then Sad went to the Sun Temple of the servants to pray for the two fugitives especially for Purple who had helped his absent cousin so much. He didn’t feel comfortable there as he expected the Sun Priest to advise him his duty was to search thoroughly and report anything suspicious that he knew. Suddenly Sad thought of something practical he could do, he went back to the Bridal Chamber and checked the machinery thoroughly so no Centaurian would want Purple to sort anything out and Purple wouldn’t be missed.
It was a long time before many servants noticed that Purple hadn’t been seen and those who noticed didn’t tell. Other engineers who worked regularly with Purple were among the first to miss him, they realized why Sad Tentacles was working so carefully and did what Sad did. They made sure the machines were working well throughout the mansion so no overseer would want Purple for anything. Overseers saw servants working dutifully and obediently with the machinery but those servants knew they were really protecting fugitive Purple and delaying the discovery that he was gone. Hardly any servants would have wanted to betray their brother slave to the master they all despised and those who might have spoken were frightened. The master was furious and ready to pin the blame on any Centaurian, indeed servants could imagine how master could react,
“Why did it take you so long to tell me? Were you trying to help them escape” or alternatively
“How did you discover this so fast? I suppose you were in on the plot!”
Servants kept their heads down, kept their tentacles down and did nothing that would make master single them out.
Very much later the overseers started to notice they hadn’t seen Purple for some time and after a proper search they had to report that Purple was missing and one of the fastest submarines was missing from the boathouse as well. Those servants who could do so kept well away from the master because no Centaurian could remember seeing him in such a rage before.
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