Cap'n Cuttlefish and Agent 3 discover an unused and forgotten train line connecting the Deepsea Metro and the Inkopolis Rail System.
This chapter takes place during Part 2 'Legacy', during chapters 7 and 8.
Deepsea Metro Central Station had seen better days.
The power had long since dipped into emergency mode, pitching much of the station into darkness. A third of the lights along the central platform were dimly lit, and everything else electric was unpowered in the station, aside from the trains which seemed to run off generators of some kind.
The doors of one such train opened, and two Inklings disembarked onto the platform, observed by a small, blue, bioluminescent creature.
"Thank you for travelling the Deepsea Metro with us," said C.Q. Cumber, the sea cucumber, in his usual conductor-y tone. "We hope you'll travel with us again."
"Until the next time!" A voice from inside the carriage called cheerfully.
"Don't worry compadre," the elderly inkling called back. "You'll see us again soon!"
"Iso Padre, actually," replied the voice. "I'll look forward to it."
The doors came to a close with pleasant warning beeps, and slowly pulled away from the station, leaving the inklings alone.
The elder of the two, Cap'n Craig Cuttlefish, was a war veteran, leader of a group that protected Inkopolis from the 'Octarian Menace'.
At least, they used to be a menace. Craig wasn't too sure anymore, what with this whole 'Agent 8' business.
Time and aging had sapped him of his body's capacity to create ink, and his body itself had very little fat. While he was in no capacity to fight anymore, he still knew his way around a battlefield, and where the resources of the New Squidbeak Splatoon could be focused.
That was where Agent 3 came in.
A male, young adult inkling with long hair that he often tied up when working, Remo had been working alongside Cap'n Cuttlefish for two years now, and had come to consider him as a friend, a guide along this side of the world he'd increasingly invested himself in.
They regarded their task with some concern.
The day before, their musician friends Pearl and Marina, their contact with the surface (since radio communication with the rest of the Splatoon had been... ineffective) had informed them that a human, or ex-human, had made their way into the ranks.
Never mind the fact that they were supposed to still be extinct...
But after what they had been through not that long ago, with the Thangs and the Metro and the telephone that had turned out to be a human-made AI bent on destroying them, the fact that there was one, confirmed human, running around Inkopolis and doing who-knows-what, and part of the Squidbeaks on the surface...
Craig had made the call.
They were headed to the surface to investigate.
And that started at the Central Station.
Large shards of plastic and glass were strewn about the main platform, not far from where they stood.
The remnants of the four "Thangs" that had nearly caused the end of Craig and his newest protégé, Agent 8. Craig shivered as he and Remo walked past it to the opposite end of the platform.
"You OK, sir?" Remo asked, having noticed. His longer tentacles were tied up so as not to get in the way while he was working.
"Yes, yes, I'm fine, Agent 3." Craig's eyes turned away from the wreckage as he reached the other side first, and gingerly eased himself down onto the unused track. "Once again I'm just glad you reached us before that telephone juiced us up. We're headed down this way." He pointed down into the tunnels using his cane.
"Right..." Agent 3 took one last look at the remains of the busted blender, then leapt down onto the track, helping the Cap'n down with him. "So this was where you met up with Agent 8, right?"
Craig nodded as they both headed into the tunnel. "That's right. You must have been long gone before we came to."
"I wouldn't know. The thing that attacked us must have knocked me away quite a bit, because I don't remember heading down here at all."
The light grew even dimmer as they walked, until the Central Station was a pinprick of dim light behind them and otherwise pitch black darkness forced them to tread carefully, running their hands along the brick wall. The only sounds they could both hear were their own footsteps and the sound of skin brushing on brick, reverberating through the darkness.
Remo forced himself to try to breathe normally - from all they had seen since they had returned to the Metro, Kamabo's strange Octarians had essentially vanished. They had not appeared at any of the stations they had previously inhabited, nor were in the NILS facilities itself. But even knowing that, the oppressive darkness of the deep underground did not make him feel at ease. For all Agent 3 knew, something could be waiting to strike...
He shook his head. This was not the time to worry about the darkness. He wasn't a child anymore, for goodness sake. He needed to focus on their task.
"Captain," he began, speaking quietly. "If this route does work and we get up to the surface... What's our goal with this... this human? The other agents?"
"Hmm." His leader took his time responding. It seemed he didn't quite know what he wanted to do. "Well, Agent 3... I suppose we should assess whether this 'Lily' is a threat. That Marina girl seems to think she's okay. One and Two must think so too, if they've taken her on board. But it would be good to know for sure."
"Right, but... what about everything we've been through? Her turning up can't be a coincidence..."
"I don't believe that it is. There's a reason she's here. Whether she is aware of it, though... that's the question."
"Marina said she wasn't aware of Tartar at all..." Agent 3 considered the information that they had had, from the dossiers and from Marina's chatroom. "Knowing that, what we've heard of her actions lines up. She's collecting stuff she knows of, that she's probably familiar with..."
"Supposedly she's on a mission, doing those exact things," Craig mused, as the pitch black tunnel started to turn to the left and, both men keeping their hand to the wall, they followed, seeing the glimpse of light past the next turn.
"Your granddaughters must see some value in that phone and the car..."
"Or they don't want to see it falling into the wrong hands."
"With the Octarians?" Three asked pointedly.
Craig Cuttlefish couldn't answer him.
"You're not sure anymore, are you?"
"...With Octavio, most certainly we can't let those things fall to him," Craig finally said, after some thought. "Especially if there is a chance there are old human weapons."
The elderly inkling sighed. "...But no, I'm not too sure with the Octarians as a whole at the moment."
Three nodded. Craig's whole saga with Agent 8, and Marina had probably caused him to re-evaluate some life choices.
Though they were the only Octarians he knew personally, besides DJ Octavio himself and the strike squad that had tried to control Turf War arenas on the surface during his first mission as Agent 3... Eight and Marina acted much differently to the other Octarians, or at least the Octolings. What was different about them...?
They had both been affected by the Squid Sisters' Calamari Inkantation at some point, Remo remembered that much. But there was seemingly something else the two of them had in common that set them apart from the other Octolings underground, and even the ones here in the Metro... at least, before they'd all vanished anyway.
Three thought on this as they rounded the next corner and was greeted by an upcoming station and - thank goodness, light. Cold, harsh lights, but light nonetheless.
Craig approached the station platform with some interest, noting the vault that /had/ been there (and unlocked by Agent 8 when the two had first passed through) had not been replaced.
This place had been seemingly forgotten by the denizens of the Deepsea.
But, knowing what they did now, Agent 3 and Cap'n Cuttlefish could see that the station was being used as a NILS/Kamabo storage area.
Signs, boxes and CQ Card ticket barriers were pushed up against the wall. And, oddly, his eyes were drawn to two filled infusion bags, drips attached, on either side of the station.
"Oh my goodness, those are blood bags," Remo gasped out when he saw them. "This place continues to creep me the hell out."
"So they are..." Craig stepped up onto the platform, Agent 3 not far behind, and examined one of the bags closely. Indeed, squid blood. Or perhaps more likely, octopus blood. Was it? The blue liquid looked more sickly and bright.
Come to think of it... Wasn't the color about the same as the ink the Octarians in those tests used?
The same ones Marina had said weren't alive...?
Wasn't it the same ink used in the satchel that had been affixed to Agent 8 while he was down here...?
"Oh, fuck. Cap'n... you'd better take a look at this."
Three's voice was slightly distant, as he'd made his way into the main area of the 'station'. Craig shifted with some effort, and swam through the inkrailing to the area to join Three.
And immediately saw what he was concerned about.
At first blush, he had thought it to be some odd station terminal that had become a dumping ground for unused contraptions.
The lines of additional blood bags along the wall, that had gone unnoticed the first time through, immediately drew his attention. "Just what were they doing here...?"
He told Three about his concern about the bags and the Metro Octarians.
"...Hmm." Remo thought a moment, looking a bit sick himself at the thought. "...The question is, was this blood to be infused into the Octarians, or was it drawn from them?"
Neither option sounded particularly pleasant.
They didn't hang around for too long after that.
Agent 3 and the Cap'n continued down the abandoned rail line.
After they climbed through the tape that was supposedly to stop them, another ten or so minutes of walking and talking (Agent 3 was secretly glad for the talking) brought them to another station.
This one was the most station-like of all of the stations they had visited in the Metro so far, bar the Central Station itself. Though any facilities were boarded up, or taped off, Remo could see that whatever town, or city, or whatever this station was attached to must have once been a bustling hub of the Deepsea.
As it was now, though, it was nearly useless. Even the glass doors that showed promise of leading somewhere, possibly even upward, were locked, and neither man was ready to risk bleeding out or splatting themselves trying to see what was on the other side.
As they turned away from the doors at the rear of the station, the Cap'n pointed out a hole in the ceiling. Interestingly, despite the loss of power from the NILS Statue above, something in the broken crawlspace inside was still sparking. Perhaps this is on another circuit, Remo wondered.
"Myself and Agent 8 must have crashed through here," Craig noted to him as he thought. "Since we both came to right underneath this hole."
"Huh..." Remo seemed astounded. "This is quite a distance from where I had come down. How...?"
Craig shrugged. "This Deepsea Metro must be quite... erm, deep."
They examined the few stalls, nooks and crannies in the station, but as they saw nothing of interest they quickly turned their attention to the next tape barrier.
Agent 3 stared down into the dark tunnels as they slid neatly past the tape. "So... into uncharted territory, huh...?"
"Indeed!" Craig stared into the darkness with him, scritching his beard. "Isn't it always with us, though?"
"Sure, but..." Remo gulped. An uncomfortable feeling was bubbling up within him. "If this doesn't work out, then what do we have? We either... try to climb the unclimbable statue, or we're just... stuck down here for good..."
"Well, let's find out what is this way before figuring out what comes next," Craig told him. "As our friend Iso Padre has said, 'there's no use in worrying in what could be, only in what is.'"
"Has he ever said that, sir?"
There was a pause from Craig. "...Let's get moving."
The tunnels from that point forward were completely unlit, unpowered. After a few more bends it had seemed that the tunnel from that point went in a straight line, which put an end to at least anticipating the next turns, and Remo felt the journey would be mindbogglingly boring.
The realization that they needed some light came after only an hour's walking, and the decision was made to double back to try to raid the stall at the previous station, in hopes that a torch or something might be found.
The flashlight they 'borrowed' from that stall would be used only sparingly, for a few seconds every fifteen minutes to conserve power, to check the path ahead to see if anything changed.
But nothing ever did.
Idle conversation as the two walked died out eventually, leaving Agent 3 to only hear the sounds of their own footsteps on the gravel, echoing through the darkness.
It left his mind to wander.
He wondered how Cap'n Cuttlefish was able to cope in places like this.
Nobody will know if he were to never leave this place alive, said a semi-robotic voice only he could hear.
Agent 3 winced and clutched his head. Please... go away... Not now...
This was why he was not a fan of the dark, and the near-silence.
Ever since he had come to, on a platform suspended beneath Off The Hook's helicopter, about a month ago, the voice of Commander Tartar had etched itself into his head.
It was bad enough that that... thing had managed to assume control of his body, but even after he had been freed from its clutches, and the AI seemingly destroyed, his mind seemed to conspire against him, as every now and then that voice would speak up, one only he could hear, voicing dark mutterings, intrusive thoughts. What he would give to be rid of the memory of him...
"You alright back there, Agent 3?" the voice of Craig called back to him eventually.
"I'm fine," Three said quickly. "Coast seems clear back here."
There was a pause from the Cap'n. "Well alright... Let me know if that changes."
Agent 3 tried to forget about the voice for a moment, and instead considered the situation they were in.
Not that there was much to consider for the time being. After having the background ambience of the Deepsea Metro Train for so long, the only noise they heard now was that of their own footsteps, their own breath. Occasionally, they heard the sound of water droplets somewhere in the distance. Surely that was just old leaky pipes...
Prepare to drown, speck.
Remo's view snapped down to the ground. As if he would be able to see anything... "Fuh-flashlight, please..."
He was promptly blinded as the flashlight in Craig's hands switched on, pointed at the ground then panning up to the yawning infinite darkness ahead. "I don't see anything new, Three. What's up?"
"Are... you sure there's no water on the ground?"
"None at all," the Cap'n answered simply as he flicked off the flashlight. "Completely dry."
The voice in the back of Remo's head wasn't satisfied though. "Is it... possible that's changing?"
"Anything's possible, Three. I have faith in the quality of the construction of this place. Are you sure you're OK?"
"I'm fine, sir. I'm not hurt."
"That's not what I mean, Three, and you know it. You've been more anxious every time we venture off the train..."
"Must we really have this conversation now?"
"Why not? I'm concerned about you." The Cap'n began to prod at the ground in front of him with his cane. Hopefully, they would find out if the terrain changed before they bumped into something. He'd admittedly forgotten what the tunnels were like between the two stations he had seen this way. "Nothing else to focus on, anyway."
Remo said nothing.
"Do you trust me, Agent 3?"
That got him to stop.
"Of c--- of all the--- Of course I trust you, Craig!" He raised his voice, shouting into the darkness. "What's this abo---"
"Relax, Agent 3. Let's stop for a moment." Remo heard the shifting of feet on gravel, footsteps, and then nearly jumped as Cap'n Cuttlefish's hand brushed his shoulder, then rested atop it. "Talk to me, Three," he said, close to him. "What's got you so paranoid? I've never seen you like this, in all our time working together. Has something happened?"
Remo said nothing for a time. He wasn't sure if he could say it and not sound crazy.
"...He's... still in my head..."
"He..." Remo chose his words carefully, unable to look upward toward where he thought Craig's face was and shaking lightly. "When he... was controlling me... he kept saying these things in my head..." He took a moment to breathe. "Telling me to do things..."
Craig patiently said nothing, waited for him to continue.
"Every time we leave the train... In the dark... I hear him again... saying those things. Telling me to kill them, or y-you, or myself..."
Cap'n Cuttlefish considered his protégé for a moment. He had already known that Agent 3's experience under the influence of the telephone had changed him, but nobody, possibly not even Three himself seemed to know the extent of the damage done to his sanity. He wished nothing more than for Three to know that he would be okay, that there was no reason to fear the dark, that Tartar wasn't really alive and living in his head.
"Do you act on these impulses?" he finally asked softly.
"Then you are just like the rest of us." Craig pat his agent's shoulder in comfort. \"We all have those dark thoughts at times. It is not the presence of those thoughts that determines our character, or in this case it does not determine that the telephone still exists within your head. It is your actions, your own words that tell us who you are. And I know you are noble, orderly, committed... and perhaps a touch lost in your work. But those values are you, and you've only become more cautious since our encounter at the statue.
"But there is no need to fret, Agent 3 - there is nobody here anymore who wishes us harm. It is just us versus the path ahead. And so long as we keep moving, and trust in ourselves and each other, we'll eventually reach our goal. Alright?"
Remo stood back, taking in what his mentor said. It was quite a lot - he wasn't sure he could digest it all. He did notice something though... "I... I think you've probably been hanging around Iso a bit too much, Cap..."
"Perhaps... he's a quite impressionable chap. Do you understand though? That telephone will never define you. You mustn't let it define you, Remo."
Remo nearly jumped out of his skin. Cap'n Cuttlefish never used his real name.
The only other time was after they had returned to the Cap'n's outpost after DJ Octavio's defeat, over two years ago...
"...Craig... What do I do?"
Craig thought for a moment. "We were having a good chatter before now. Was that helping you?"
Agent 3 nodded, forgetting for a moment that the pitch blackness made the gesture worthless. "I think it... distracted my thoughts enough, yeah..."
"I see. Very well. Let us keep moving." Cap'n Cuttlefish finally took his hand away from Three, and the two set off again, again keeping left. "Let me tell you some stories from the War..."
The tunnel stretched on for hours as Remo and Craig traded stories from their lives, theorised on motives, and occasionally devolved into discussions on nothing, like whether squid rings were better than onion rings, or somesuch. In fact, it continued for so long that eventually the two had to stop for the 'night' and nap to recover energy.
At one point Remo noticed that the tunnel had begun to curve upwards, giving the two hope that they were headed in the right direction. It didn't get any lighter, but their spirits were renewed and they kept pressing onward, with hope that their efforts would pay off. Craig wondered where they might end up, when this was all said and done.
The tunnels levelled out again, almost ten hours of travel later. Remo was too tired to care about the fact that conversation had dried up.
It was almost a shock when the tunnel turned, and then ahead of them, in the distance... light. And sound, far away, muffled, but sounds of other life.
"Thank goodness, Agent 3," Cap'n Cuttlefish said with a relieved tone, turning to him, with a slight grin. "It's the light at the end of the tunnel."
Remo laughed, despite himself, and pushed Craig away as they pushed forward.
Finally, after a few more minutes, they found themselves entering a new station. Signs on the wall told them it was Inkopolis Bay.
The rail line that they emerged on was seemingly unused, and while lights were on on the other two platforms of the station where other trains ran, the last, where the two inklings were, was unlit. Carefully, as some of the commuters on the main platforms watched, they crossed the station carefully, watching for trains until they had joined the rest.
Remo and Cap'n Cuttlefish took a seat near the station exit, and took a few moments to rest their tired legs.
"Oooh, fresh cosplay!" A younger inkling girl called to Remo, walking up. The Agent realised with a start that he was still in uniform, and his weapon was still holstered on his belt. "You make that yourself?"
"Uhm..." He glanced at the Cap'n, but decided to play along. "Er, some of it. I had a bit of help getting some bits together."
"Cool!" The girl looked impressed. "Who are you meant to be?"
"I uh." Agent 3 took a moment to think. "I'm a... I'm the villain from that last Cod Hand game?"
"Never heard of it." With a look of confusion, she asked, "You look like you haven't slept well at all. You staying anywhere?"
"Well, my apa---" Remo stopped himself. Come to think of it, he'd been gone for quite a while. Was his apartment still there? Or had they leased it to someone else by now? What about his stuff?! "...I'm not sure."
"Oh." With that, she put her backpack down and opened it, rummaging until she found what she was looking for, and pulled out a soft hoodie, which she thrust in his direction. "Here. I know it's not much, but it's supposed to be cold tonight."
"Oh... Um, thanks." Remo glanced at the hoodie in confusion. "Are you sure?"
"Of course!" She placed the hoodie in his hands, then turned away to rejoin her friend, who was watching them. "Well, have a good night, mister!"
"Uh... Thanks, you too." Remo smiled. With a look to the Cap'n, he murmured, "Cap'n, be honest. Do I look homeless to you?"
As they travelled the train line, Remo wearing his new hoodie over the top of his uniform, he took the opportunity to check in on Marina's Chatroom to update them and let them know they were safe.
Oddly, though, they weren't there. But Marina had left messages for them, in the hope that they would return.
DJ_Hyperfresh> Hi! I know you're not around at the moment Craig, Three, but I am leaving you this update, just in case you do come back to us and wonder what's happened. DJ_Hyperfresh> Callie, Marie, Lily and Lorne have invited Pearl, Eight and I to talk in the Square a couple hours from now about all the stuff that happened in the Metro and the Statue. DJ_Hyperfresh> So we'll be gone for a while tonight - don't freak out if you come back and we're not here, we haven't left you! DJ_Hyperfresh> I hope your travel is going alright... It's strange not having you both around. Stay safe! Hope to hear from you soon!
From there, the two formulated a plan. As much as they would have loved to just go back home, this seemed like the perfect time to introduce themselves and get to the bottom of this whole 'human' business.
So, they travelled directly to the Square, in hoped that they would catch the others.
They arrived at the station at roughly midnight, and as they were headed up, they heard a call of "Craig! Three!" in their direction.
Cap'n Cuttlefish and Remo turned and were immediately beset by hugs from who else but Pearl and Marina, Eight standing, smiling just behind them.
"You made it!" Marina exclaimed, grinning. "How'd you get here, though?"
"It was a longshot," Craig briefly explained to them, "but it seems services used to run between Inkopolis and the Metro, back in the day. How about that?"
"Whaaaat?! That's wild!" Pearl grinned and fistbumped Craig, having gotten in close enough now. "So, what, you managed to get a train up here?"
Remo shook his head. "Walked."
"What?! That's hardcore!" The inkling idol was astonished.
"Then, er, why aren't you two sleeping that off?" Marina wondered.
Craig answered that one. "We just saw your message about that meeting, so I hoped we could catch the others for a talk about this human business."
"Well, uh, they should still be there..." Marina glanced up toward the station exit. "Better be quick, though. They'll probably all be headed home too, soon."
Remo nodded. "We won't keep you then. We'll catch up a bit later, alright?"
"Sounds good!" Marina smiled as the three of them started to board the next train, that had arrived as they had talked. "See you then!"
"Take care, girls," Craig said as the two saw them off, then turned back to walk up toward the Square.
The Inkopolis Square was empty and yet lit up by the billboards and streetlamps above. To Remo it looked... serene, in a sense.
Craig and Remo didn't get a chance to look for long, as the sound of feet landing on metal caused them to hide in the small bushes outside the Inkopolis News studio.
"...That went well."
"You weren't expecting it to? C'mon, Lily, they're better than that, and you know that. But see? They support us. We don't have to hide it. We can just be us."
Remo and Craig exchanged glances from behind the bushes. This must be Agents 4 and 5.
"Well, c'mon," said the second girl, Agent 4. Lorne, supposedly. "Pretty sure there're still trains running this late. Let's get home before they stop."
Without another word, the two girls walked past the two male squids and down the corridor into the station.
Unshifting, Craig said, "Tail them, Agent 3. It's best you introduce yourself to them. I'll go talk to Agents 1 and 2. We'll meet back here at their Octo Canyon outpost tomorrow."
Agent 3 nodded as he also unshifted from his squid form. "Got it." He immediately took off, walking hurriedly back toward the station.
Remo had waited quietly, in squid form again, as the girls waited for their train to arrive. Once it had, and they got on board at the rear of the train, the boy followed them in, choosing a spot not too far away from where they sat, with plenty of room to lay down. Using his mantle as a blanket, he stretched out, like he was back on the Metro. He closed his eyes, pretending to have quietly fallen asleep within a few minutes.
For a little while the ride was uneventful. Every now and then Remo barely opened his eyes to make sure they had not moved.
"Lily...?" Lorne said finally. "If...if Tartar did have a way for you to go home... back to your time... would you take it?"
Tartar...? I thought they weren't on his side... What did they talk about out there...?
Remo slowly opened his eyes, just a touch, to watch them.
"It's... complicated." Lily seemed to be taking her time to respond. "I... would love to see my friends again. To see my family again. To let them know I'm OK. To tell them of the wonderful world I've found here. And I... I'd kind of love to be able to show you the world that I lived in. But...if it was a one way thing, if I couldn't come back, or if I had to be an inkling forever, trapped in that old world... I just couldn't. Not anymore."
Interesting. She seems to enjoy this world. Tartar certainly didn't. I guess Marina's right. Still so odd though...
"I do miss them," Lily continued. "A lot. But I think I've been more successful under my own power in this world than I ever was in my own. And I have you, of course. And the others."
"Okay... I just... Is it bad of me to think that when you were talking about asking if there was 'a way back', that you still wanted to leave?"
"...No, I don't think you're wrong to think that..."
Remo continued to listen quietly, closing his eyes again. He was satisfied he was watching the right people.
"I'm committed. To this team. To you." Lily gave a deep sigh. "I just... want to know if that option was always there."
Lily and Lorne (and Remo) disembarked at the Inkopolis West station and quietly shuffled toward an apartment complex, Remo stealthily following behind the others.
As they climbed the floors, Remo wondered if they must live together. He wondered how long that had been going on, and how long they had known each other.
Remo finally saw them enter one of the apartments, and Remo, knowing the answers were so close he could almost grasp them, strode toward the door quickly.
He caught the door as one of the girls was closing it, and gently pushed it open a tad to see who was there.
He was face to face with Lily, and she didn't look thrilled.
"Excuse me, 1AM is not the time for visitors. If you really need to talk to us, there's..." Lily went quiet for a moment, realising that they had just seem him on the train. She scowled. "Excuse me, what are you doing following us? If you try anything, we're the wrooong people to fuck wi---"
"I'm not going to try anything," Remo quickly said, raising his palms. "But I need to talk to you. ...And I also need a place to stay for the night. I don't know this part of town."
"No chance. Goodnight." The ex-human waved him off, but he didn't move, wouldn't move.
He decided to take a chance. "Agent 5."
Lily blinked, and for a brief moment her face showed fear. Then it settled back into its previous expression. "Excuse me, what?"
"Agent 5. Real name Lily." Having thrown her off, he took his chance and pushed the door open, seeing the other Agent in the bed at the opposite end of the apartment. "And your friend, Agent 4, real name Lorne. I need to talk to you both."
He expected a reaction, but he didn't expect the way that Lorne had gotten up, walked to him and yanked him inside. "Okay, who the fuck are you," she said with a scowl, face close to his, "and why are you at our door in the middle of the night?"
Remo easily forced her hands away from him, and stood back, as he untied his mantle from around his neck and slipped off the hoodie. "I'm sorry to pull this on you so late. We only just got back a few hours ago, and only just found where you all were, but I had orders to find you..."
As the hoodie came free, he pulled his Hero Headset from its pocket, and watched as Lily's and Lorne's mouths fell open.
"My name's Remo. I'm Agent 3. Captain Cuttlefish has asked me to come find you."