“I am surprised you are not sleeping off last night.” Hermann demurs, smiling. “You were rather, enthusiastic.”
“Well yeah,” Newt shrugs. “Halloween, dude! You made a great xenomorph.”
“I am a xenomorph.” Hermann huffs.
Newt leans in and kisses him. “A really sweet, adorable xenomorph.”
Hermann kisses back happily. “You made a lovely Ripley. Did Hermine mind being your prop?”
“She loved it.” Newt puts his arm around Hermann. “I kept sneaking her sardines. Now, we’re going to be late.”
Hermann looks up, the massive, gaping fissure leading into Boneyard. “In here?”
“Yep.” Newt strokes his arm, “It’s cool dude, you’ll love it. It’s Tendo’s idea.”
Hermann shivers as they pass out of the gold Anteverse sunlight, and into the cold cold cold of the Boneyard, the pits. The great walls rear up around them, damp and still as they round the corners, burrowing in and deeper into the old Master complex.
Tendo is waiting for them a turning away from the Kaiju graveyard, he smiles. “Hey Hermann! My man!”
He steps in, and throws something around Hermann’s shoulders. Hermann reaches up and his fingers find warm, rough wool, it’s a sort of poncho and Hermann buries himself in it, glad for the relief.
“Here,” Tendo leads him around the bend, and out into the sprawling, hollow darkness of the Kaiju boneyard.
It’s so huge here that it takes Hermann a few moment to notice the candles. There’s a cluster of them, just off the path, into the maze of bones. Hermann frowns, and steps off the path. He has to get on all sixes to climb over the skeletons and his heart tightens in his chest, a silent apology to the dead.
The candles mark out a little circle, and there are blankets here, two baskets. He looks back at Newt, frowning, and Chris and Alison are here too, and Diane. They climb over carefully and join him, sit down on the blankets and opens the hampers.
One is full of sandwiches, rice, last night’s cake. The other holds the remains of a skinmite and some local fish.
Hermann looks between them, then back into the expectant faces of his friends and oh, oh.
“Dia de los Muertos.” He murmurs.
“De los Difunos,” Tendo corrects him gently. “Yeah. We thought we might spend some times with your dead, today.”
Hermann looks around. The searchlights are dim, out here, the candles glint in empty eye sockets, broken teeth, shattered bones. Hermann rests a hand on the smooth curve of a fingerbone, then settles down beside Newt on the blankets. “Thank you.”
“No problem.” Newt smiles, “Never a bad excuse for a party.”
It’s a huge chamber, a Jaeger could get lost here. Their little firelight is a tiny pinprick in the miserable darkness, the heavy, oppressive sense of loss and pain that still weighs on this place.
But it is a pinprick, a tiny hole. And maybe in time, little by little, that might spread, grow and warm until the Boneyard will be- yes, a graveyard. A place to ponder and remember the dead and celebrate them, unnamed as they are.