Carter Mah

February 20, 2022

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A trip down memory lane

Koa’s Lab, 1:03 am

“Sigh… I wonder how Eva’s doing” I mused as I scanned the code on the screen directly in front of me. It was exactly what I needed, a long, seemingly complex piece of code filled with enough math and variables that made it look as if it were solving something important.

Saving it away in the presentation folder, I smiled ruefully at what life as the foremost Kryptomon scientist had become. “Father of Kryptomon” or not, the lab still needed money to keep open and someone had to pay Dr Wang and the others their salary. The pink serum was proving difficult to synthesize but the bigwigs at the bank never needed to know that the code simply played through a million rounds of Monopoly to determine the best method of winning the game.

“I hope she’s doing okay.” I sighed to myself. It was a risky move sending her alone to Africa, but someone needed to be here, holding up the lab and continuing the search for Embie. Besides, if anyone could charm her way into learning the secrets of Kekayaan village, it would be Eva. She always had a way with people, even in the days when we were in university together…

University of Tor Vergata, several years in the past

“You know some girls in the class think you’re a little bit of a nerd right?” Eva laughed, interrupting me mid sentence as I tried to explain the amount of trouble I had to go to in order to unlock The Magus Sisters in Final Fantasy X.

“Where’d that come from all of a sudden?” I spluttered while looking around, expecting to see the girls in question that prompted the random comment.

It was unlikely, but that didn’t stop me from taking a look. We had just spent the last hour in the university cafeteria working on the tutorial that Eva had gotten from her Anthropology elective and there was not a soul in sight, with it already being 11pm.

“Nowhere! It’s just that while I might think its impressive you know the button codes to spawn a tank in GTA by heart, not every girl might think so.” Eva replied. “There are some cute girls in my class, and if you put on a nice shirt every once in a while like when you graduated and stopped dressing like someone who only owns three shirts, one of them might even say yes to a date.”

Koa’s Graduation Day

I sighed. Eva had been trying to set me up on dates ever since she found out I’ve never had a girlfriend, and with her being the social butterfly of the cohort, she had plenty of single friends to recommend.

“You know I’m just not interested at the moment.” I said, leaning back into my chair. “This job as a Teaching Assistant and my own research with the Keystone Bank keeps me busy enough as it is. I don’t think I’d have the time to be dating and getting into a relationship.”

“But not too busy to spend the entire night grinding to get The Magus Sisters?” Eva shot back, rolling her eyes in mock desperation.

I grinned. We definitely made for an odd duo, walking back to the university dorms together. We ran in very different social circles, and it was largely due to Eva’s fascination with RPGs that brought us together. She proudly revealed that she once dabbled in speedrunning and we’ve been fast friends ever since.

“I didn’t hear you complaining when I was power levelling you in MapleStory.” flicking her on the forehead. “Now how about you worry less about me and more about how you’re going to pass this elective? I saw you dozing off when Professor Brown was showing off the vase today.”

“Oh come on! That boring old thing?”

“That *boring* old thing was thousands of years old! He must have called in some serious favors to have been allowed to bring it in to class. I guarantee it’s going to be on the exam…”

Carter Mah

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