"What is inside you?"
Philippe tapped the hard exterior of the EGG he had received for Christmas. He listened closely and heard a tiny bit of movement for a few seconds before it grew quiet. The ornate Kirinmera EGG sat majestically on the satin pillow Philippe had placed on his desk. A bright heat lamp shone down on the EGG, basking it in a deep red glow.
"Ugh! Why are you so obsessed with that stupid EGG." Bone Maiden rolled her eyes and then went back to staring at her phone.
"There's a companion of some kind in there," replied Philippe. "I could use someone nice to hang out with."
"What's wrong with me," snorted Bone Maiden without looking up from her phone. "Don't I... Hang on." Her fingers moved furiously as she started to type out a message.
Philippe shook his head and turned his attention back to the EGG. "Ok, a heat lamp doesn't work. I've tried wrapping it in an electric blanket. Hmmm." Philippe studied the EGG closely to see if it held any clues on how to hatch it, but couldn't find anything that he hadn't seen in the last few weeks.
"Just hit it with a hammer," said Bone Maiden as she typed another message.
"If an egg is broken by outside force, life ends. If broken by inside force, life begins," muttered Philippe to himself. "How do I get this Companion to come out?"
"Ok, be like a bird and sit on it."
"As if," replied Philippe. "I think this requires something special. Just keeping it warm like a normal egg isn't working."
"Why don't you ask one of your bird friends if they know anything?" asked Bone Maiden. "In the meanwhile, I'm meeting Azi to go shopping. I heard the VIMworld store has gotten some new items in and we want to be first to find out what's up." She opened the door to Philippe's mansion and waltzed outside. "Have fun with your EGG. Laters!"
Philippe stroked his chin thoughtfully as he watched Bone Maiden head down the street towards the store. "I bet GrOwl might have some ideas. I'll give her a call."
He was about to go back in when he spotted Armstrong zipping down the road, heading in the same direction as Bone Maiden. "Hey!" shouted Philippe. "Can you ask GrOwl how to hatch these EGGs?" Philippe watched as Armstrong ignored him and continued hastily off into the distance. "I guess he was in a hurry," he said to himself.
Philippe went back into his house and sat down at his office desk and looked up at the magnificent EGG. "I wonder what surprise you have inside?" He picked up his phone, but before he could find GrOwl's number, someone arrived at the door.
"Armstrong is at the door," spoke a disembodied mechanical voice from a speaker above the door.
"Thanks, Jeeves," said Philippe. "Let him in."
Slowly, the door swung open as Armstrong hesitantly rolled in. In his bulky arms, he held a heavy crate. "I've brought a present from Queen GrOwl," he said meekly.
"Oh! Is that where you were heading off to just a few minutes ago?"
Armstrong wrinkled his nose and thought for a second. "No. I just got here from the Island of Play. Are you sure it was me?"
"Hm. It looked like you. It even had the 'Mom' tattoo. I thought you were trying to catch up with Bone Maiden."
"She was here and I missed her?" gasped Armstrong. "It's so cool that you hang out with her.
"It might be cool if you could ever get her to stop looking at her phone." Philippe looked at the crate. "Go ahead and set it down. It looks heavy."
"Nonsense," he said as he lifted it up and down in a show of strength. Getting winded, he placed the crate gently on the ground and pressed the latch on the top. Suddenly, all of the sides fell outwards and exposed the contents. Inside was a glowing container. Its top was crowned with a large emerald, and the metal bands that surrounded the crystal enclosure were a brilliant platinum. "Watch this!" Armstrong folded up what appeared to be some arms on either side of the object as it lit up and started to hum.
"This is brilliant. What is it?"
Armstrong fished a piece of paper. "Uh, the Queen says it harvests the surrounding spiritual energy and focuses it into the crystal enclosure."
Philippe stared at the object and then back at Armstrong. "And... that does what?"
"Oh! right! I forgot to tell you what this does," said Armstrong sheepishly. "It's an Incubator."
Philippe's eyes lit up. "That's it! I needed an Incubator to hatch my EGG!"
"Not just any Incubator. EGGs are very different from regular eggs and have to have these special Incubators. Ever since we discovered these EGGs, Queen GrOwl has been working furiously on a method to hatch them. We have special materials on the Island that are very rare and, dare I say, somewhat magical. I was told that the rarer the materials, the faster the EGG will incubate."
"Well, this one looks really sweet. Let's give it a go!" Philippe ran over to the desk and picked up the EGG and ran back to the Incubator. As soon as he got close enough, the top flipped open automatically. He held the EGG over the opening to lower it in gently, but as soon as he got over the Incubator, he felt a force holding the EGG in place. As he released his grip on the EGG, it slowly lowered itself into the Incubator and came to rest, floating in the middle of the crystal container. The lid closed slowly and automatically latched itself. Soon, a warm glow radiated from the EGG. Philippe could almost see thin strands of energy being sucked into the top of the Incubator.
"Now what?" asked Armstrong?
Philippe sat down at his desk and smiled. "And now? We wait."