Marx returned to his mom's apartment on a Sunday night. The weekend had been spent with his dad, which translated into two mornings in a row getting up at 6:00 a.m. to go hiking in the woods behind his dad's house. Marx didn't mind the hikes really, and he wasn't out of shape or anything. It was just that his dad was insanely in shape and didn't quite comprehend why anyone would want to walk the trails when they could jog.
So when Marx returned to his mom's place he was more than ready to drop his duffel at the door and pass out until he had to get up for school the next morning. It didn't quite happen like that, naturally.
The first thing he noticed was the smell, which rolled over him like a damp blanket the moment he opened his bedroom door. Marx gagged and managed the duffel-dropping part of his plans, at least. He was already reaching to slam the door shut when he caught sight of something that looked like an agitated sphere of mist hovering just above his desk. Marx froze,