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Perusing The Main Menu At The In-Game Cafe

Dishonorable Dining

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Hey, good to see ya, how ya doin’? Take a seat anyplace you like – we got window seats, we got booths, we got stools over here at the counter. I’d keep shy of the table just at the back there – it’s reserved, on a strictly unofficial basis, and the guy who plants hisself there most days ain’t exactly particular about whose keister he puts his boot into, if you catch my drift.

Now, what’ll it be?

The In-Game Cafe is a dingy little place on the corner of Silicon Boulevard and Vinecraft. People often remark that “it’s seen better days” but they don’t know that for sure – nobody knows how good the days have been or how good the next days are going to be. The In-Game is looking worn and tired, that’s what those people mean, and they presume it wasn’t always this way.

You take a seat as far from any of the other patrons as possible. The place is quiet so that’s not too difficult. There’s a man wearing overalls sitting at the counter, shovelling greasy scraps of mushroom omelette into his mouth. Every time he swallows, the counter creaks. Beneath his clothes, his body is changing, muscles rippling and straining against the fabric. He was already north of six feet tall when you entered; he’ll be pushing eight by the time you leave. Occasionally, there’s a pop louder than the sizzling of patties on the grill as one of his bones slides into a new configuration.

Attempting to ignore the snuffling, sneaker-squeaking of the gangly-limbed werehog at the chilli dog trough, you pick up a menu. On cue, the proprietor appears.

“We’ve got a couple of specials on the board over there but we’re fresh outta every kind of potion. People ask for ’em but I don’t like to keep ’em in stock, y’know? This is a diner, not a frickin’ pharmacy.”

Five dishes catch your eye.

“Potato Mine salad sounds good.”

“Let’s keep it simple. I’ll have a whole roast chicken.”

“I’ll have the Dabokva brand whale meat on rye.”

“I hear the Yolkfolk Surprise is good.”

“Just get me a bowl of Dogfood.”

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Adam Smith

former Deputy Editor

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