“I assume you’re here about the treasure hunt,” spoke Collagesity representative Baker Bloch to the stranger sitting beside him, breaking the awkward silence.
“Y-es,” proclaimed Horace Wise in a surprisingly stilted voice (to Baker). “We think we have what it takes in Philo to complete the task — wrap everything up neat and nice-ly.” He looked at Baker directly now. “Take it *home*,” he furthered.
“Philo, huh. The retro-village? Just over there?” Baker Bloch points in a southeast direction from their position atop the Virtual Chelsea Hotel. And, yes, he was already trying to be slightly dismissive of the haughty tone set. In defense mode.
“We are *not* re-tro. It is just that most people around us — on the continent — are from the *fu-ture*.” Horace Wise scanned his neighbor with protruding lower lip. “Like your-*self*, apparently. What fair village or town or city do you represent? Are you a class 4 burg? 3? Dare I say: *2*? We are proudly a 4, since we span two sims now, Myron and also Catal-pa. We actually, in a way, share the Catalpa-Tessock sim with VHC City, another 4.” Horace Wise paused. “I assume VHC City is in the hunt as well, since we’re *here* — at the Chel-sea. I wonder where their represen-tative is, though?”
“I represent Collagesity, by the way,” a now truly irritated Baker Bloch said. “Class 2 burg, I suppose we are. Considerably less than a sim. But we have the forest to boost us up.” Baker waited for Horace Wise to ask questions about the forest but they never came. Instead, he roosted on the class 2 aspect. Instant disqualification in his mind. Just like the case with Rodentia — all the rest. The many “others.” The wannabes in his mind. Like stars you can’t see with the naked eye in the sky. Don’t matter; nothing to see.
“Hmph,” instead came Horace Wise’s simple, cuttingly dismissive reply. They sat together even more awkwardly after this, waiting for others to show up. Baker Bloch dare not look in his eyes again.