It’s not Wednesdays that are the problem day any more…it’s Thursdays. I’m just waiting for it to roll round to Monday, and then I can start calling myself Garfield.
“The sun is aging, and soon the life will vanish.”
“Is that certain?” he choked.
“No,” the lady said. “Nothing is. But my influence will wane. I have had a long enough time of pleasure, and now my powers are lessening. You have had your time to rise, little ones.”
“I have no idea,” the Knight admits. “I’m hoping to charm her into helping…or bully her.” He winces. “Although bullying Wardens doesn’t really work.”
“That sounds like a good story.” I grin. “Tell?”
“Why do you always pick the stories that make me look like an idiot?” he grumbles.
“Oh, this must have been bad! You gotta tell it now.”
He gives me a sanitized version of a story about trying to fight four Wardens to rescue a beautiful nixie, and being overpowered after defeating three of them. I make him tell it again, pointing out where he’s slipped up and reverted to the truth, and then again. Eventually, he gives up and informs me that he was challenged by a Warden after an ill-advised snarky comment, got his ass handed to him, and hasn’t been back to Maryland since. He seems to take my hysterical laughter as a personal affront, which I suppose it is. But I am supposed to be his enemy, and it’s good for him to be taken down a notch or three.
“Unless I can borrow you?”
I’m mentally kicking myself as soon as the words are out of my mouth, and I can see the blush starting on her face. But then a small smile touches her lips, even though her cheeks are going red. “I’m only an overnight loan, I’m afraid. You’d have to bring me back tomorrow.”
“Would you consider partnering her with Jack? The fact he’s even willing to consider it is impressive. He’s incredibly picky about his survey teams.”
“That’s just as suspicious to me. What’s her hold on him?”
“Nothing that we can see. I’ll talk to him. But he’s the best person to keep an eye on her, if she does go rogue.”
I’m stopped by a well-meaning but long-winded elderly woman, who I swear must be a witch. I’m very polite to her for as long as the huge dog next to me can bear, but eventually he stands up and stretches, nudging my hand insistently.
“Garmr!” I reproach him.
His tongue lolls out at me, and then he nudges me hard enough to knock me off-balance. As I’m recovering, he starts ambling off down the pavement.
“Strong-willed men!” the ancient witch cackles, patting my hand. “Better get after him.”
“I will take your advice, babushka!” And I hurry off.
Garmr’s tongue lolls out in a laugh again as I catch him up, and I scratch his ears. “Bad dog.”