Canto 138 – The Throckpod Speaks
The designated Throckpod lumbered into Ged Aero-sensei’s camp with a sort of thorny swagger that made the students of the White Spider rather uneasy. A flower-creature like that should’ve been more humbly worried about entering an enemy’s camp than this one was.
The Throckpod that Mai Ling introduced to Ged was a daisy-headed being with disturbingly human-looking eyes. Its petals were yellow. The center of the blossom where the eyes peered out was green.
“So, I understand that you are the spokesman for the Throckpods,” Ged said.
“No. I am all Throckpods. We are all linked by our glorious leader. We are all one.”
“You do have eyes, yes. You may have noticed that I have eyes too. Not photon-sensitive seed pods, but real eyes. A gift from our glorious master who unites us all.”
“You serve the Grainmaster, then?”
“Our glorious master gave us our true sight and our ability to know what all Throckpods know, shared knowledge throughout the hive mind.”
“But do you serve the Grainmaster?”
“We serve all of the planet. Through the Grainmaster we serve, yes.”
“We have come to ask you about the treatment of the other plant people. We have come to understand that the common plant people are bullied by the Throckpods and forced to give everything they have to the Grainmaster. We wish to discuss other, more-equitable forms of governing with the Grainmaster.”
“Listen, King Monkey, we of the Throckpod legions come specifically to destroy you. We intend to eliminate all such inferior creatures from the ecospheres of all nearby planets.”
The vicious Throckpod detached three thorns from it’s arm-branches glistening with rather obvious poisons.
Shu, Mai Ling, and Taffy King each intercepted one of the thorns as it was thrown and buried the projectiles deeply into the Throckpod’s stem, near the walking-roots, thus shriveling up the flower-warrior’s only means of getting away.
“Now you have declared war on all of the plants of the sacred master. We all see through my eyes. All Throckpods now know of your treachery. I do all I can now to slay all your little monkey-kind. You will regret your treachery. The Throckpods now descend upon you!”
Of course, the Throckpod by himself had very little power to make good on his threats himself. He flung a flurry of thorns at Ged’s students and Shu, Mai Ling, and Taffy threw them all right back.
Soon the Throckpod was mostly shredded, limp and swiftly turning brown on the ground.
Luigi the Onion Guy was apparently beside himself with upset and anger. “YoU iS no knOwing hoW bad YoU haS made thiNgs now!”
“We are doing our best,” Ged answered impatiently. “You don’t expect me to just stand by and let these Throckpod monsters slay my students, do you?”
“He is only warning you that the Throckpods will now seek vengeance on us all and we may all be doomed,” explained the more reasonable Carrot-man.
At that moment Gyro and Billy came crashing down from the sky on a dragonfly-looking grav bike, the two boys tumbling and losing their cowboy hats into the center of the camp.
“Are you two all right?” gasped Sara the healer.
“Nothing that you can’t fix,” said Billy, rubbing his raw, scraped knee.
“We do have a problem, though. Thousands of Throckpods are headed this way to kill us.” Gyro’s little blue face was completely serious for once.
“Yes, we will definitely have to deal with that problem now… somehow,” said Ged Aero-sensei.