"You're sure you got the right place, flipper?" said Cheryl, the kind of person who thinks name-dropping any given television program from any given era with a sarcastic enough tone is a substitute for humor.

Blowhole II puzzled momentarily at one of his flippers, actually only missing the reference because he'd never watched any Grey-Zone media that could legally be shown to minors. "They was very specificated 'bout this here refuse receptacle. Said there weren't none normally allowed in the library. We dump in proof we iced ya, and we get just what's comin' to us."

Cheryl cocked an eyebrow, unsure if their mysterious client had used those exact words or it was simply in the nature of her present company to word everything threateningly. Unfortunately, disposing of questionable human remains was practically a reflex action at this point in her life, and so she was already dropping her severed head into the bottomless, black interior of the garbage can before she could finish her initial thought.

The three listened intently as the head tumbled, clanging, until the sound faded into the depths, none moving a muscle. They remained silently poised for an awkwardly lengthy period thereafter, except for Cheryl's natural proclivity to loudly and wetly clear her throat every three to five minutes that pass without anyone talking to her.

"Well, this was a stupid waste of time" she said, turning to leave just as some kind of something or other burst its way up out of the garbage chute and thudded to the wooden floor. Dark, squarish and a little flattened.

The first to recognize the large and tantalizingly discreet briefcase for what it was had already begun to salivate a little at the hypothetical monetary value of its possible contents, and their crooked scowl slithered into an avaricious grin like some pallid slug oozing from a moldered squash. The two dolphins were also excited.


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