"Ladies and Gentlemen, Welcome, welcome, please come in. Sit." The dining area was arranged around a small conical looking shape on top stood a man. So thin as to look gaunt without giving the impression of destitution. The blue white light shone down making it hard to tell if he was pale or made up to look pale. His clothing glittered and sparkled, just failing to mimic a mirror ball.
Men and women sat at tables covered in silver and black tablecloths, white plates and silver flatware.
"Come, come, don't be shy."
The women and men were dressed in the finest regalia. Low collars or strapless dresses for women, the men in baggy wide armed shirts and jackets, with loose legged pants, all in black. Many walked in in wonder and quickly felt a need to stop looking at the figure in the center cheering them on.
When they were positioned behind their seats, the man in the center said, "Let's begin"
Without hesitation they all sat with hands in laps
The organic cone in the middle began to melt and flowed into a stage level to the tables. "Tonight we have the treat of your life. we will start with…" He raised his hands and the blue-white light turned red, "A game. We all have chips? Yes?" A man in the back called out that he didn't have chips. "You Lose!" and the crowd laughed, as the man was escorted away. "Oh I'm just kidding. Of course we are going to play a marvelous game."
The floor rose down the main paths dividing the tables. With a twist and a manic flourish he motioned and the paths lit up. On it were three beasts. The looked like creatures of fairy tale. A small man and woman the size of children with gossamer wings held tightly to each other. A creature with a birds head and what looked like a lions body, but close up the fur was feather and claws were talons. A bird with plumage that flowed with the slightest breeze. It looked to glow.
Other beasts seven in all each a nightmare or dream come true.
"These, my friends are the pieces. In front of you you will see a machine rising." He moved through the creatures, each blurring and pixelating then reforming as he passed. "to help us learn the game we will use our lovely Pix'n he stopped and waved his arms around the smallish man and woman. They faded and reappeared in the middle stage. they didn't seem to have noticed. The Male looking one looked to be comforting the female. "And, He ran to the other side disrupting the images as he passed, "how about the Chupé." a greyhound shaped lizard with spikes up and down it's back hissed and bit. It too re-appeared in the center.
Hesitantly the people put chips in the machines. images appeared above. Butterfly wings. Or the skull of a lizard. The three on stage looked to notice each other. The fight had begun.
The Chupé attacked first. Chips began to pour out of the machines with lizard icons. More chips in more chips out. People got more involved.
the Pix'n couple were tied together and couldn't move as freely as the Chupé. Until the it bit through the rope.
Chips flowed faster, In and out of the machines. People were laughing and winning. The Pix'n turned fierce. climbing and jumping on pillars and structures the people couldn't see.
The Chupé wasn't able to track the other two. People were putting coins in. The closer to the hit the more the win. With a twist the Chupé snagged the ankle of the female with a claw and was on top of her. Ripping at her. The male was on him in a mad blur of claws and teeth. it tried to buck it off but the Pix'n would not let up.
The Chupé fell and the Pix'n ran back to its partner. It was dead.
"Well that was exciting." The hologram of the Chupé disappeared as did the image of the female Pix'n. The Male could still be seen holding something. Crying or howling. they couldn't hear.
"Some of you were big winners. Oh my. And some of you didn't fare so well. "
The people looked around and saw that several seats were now empty.
"This is an exciting evening isn't it. Okay people Dinner will be served after the main event. Who's ready for another round?"
People looked around eager to play again.
The machines lit up. Not many noticed that only one wing of the butterfly lit up before them. "First bets, everyone." The man on stage wrung his hands eagerly. Images of creatures began to float above the machines. All the creatures were released. Chips flowed from machines. Women and men screamed. The beasts bounded and attacked one another. Coins dropped coins poured out.
Three beasts left. A great white ape with wielding an unseen weapon. The bird beast and the one with glowing plumage.
"Ladies and Gentlemen Now is the time for an all in. Who will win? Push the one you believe in."
Symbols spun above the remaining players.
The three beasts released from whatever restraints were on them attacked. The claws of the glowing bird left a venom that burned the other two. The ape was taken down by a double attack.
"Oh this is a fowl turn of events."
The glowing bird belching one last attack of venom blinds the other and destroys it.
"We have winners. And as such the promise of the evening will be delivered to you. A delicacy of beast. We present to you," he waved his hands the light turned yellow, "Dinner."
All eyes followed his eyes up to the ceiling large doors opened and down along the tables those who were left were given knives. The smell of roasted beast filled the room.
sauces and spreads were placed as the still sizzling meal descended.
Gasps could be heard as the giant serving blocks began to settle. Each one had a beast, a body of a man or woman settled before the winners of the game.
"Eat up." The man in the glittered costume, bald on top, his flesh pale and eyes sunken stood in the center of the stage. "The first to finish their dinner wins." His laughter fading as he sinks from site.