A Tale of Three Pixies: Scene Four
The glamour-disguised pixies looked at each other.
"I'm not carrying his bloody drink," Fen said darkly.
"Don't look at me," Lapis said, finally entangling herself from the fuzzy man. She touched his brow and a smile slowly spread over his face as he stared off into nowhere.
"Lapis!" Petal snapped. "We are not here to enscorcel anyone!"
"Oh relax. He's fine. This is fine! It's just a little spell. He's daydreaming about Vikings and shit."
Petal shook her head. "Fine," she said. "Whatever. You're literally the worst. And I'll take the damn drinks." She turned to the bartender who was staring at them all suspiciously. "He'll be fine. Probably." She picked up the tray and walked back to the corner with Fen.
Lapis stuck her tongue out at her and followed.
Saul was waiting, his back propped up against the wall, his one blue eye watching them from under the brim of his hat. They settled in. He picked up his glass. "Well. Fen, Bloodhound of the Lady, has come to see me. With two of her sisters. Whatever have I done?"
"Nothing," Fen said. "That we know of. Unless there is something you would care to report?"
"I don't have to report anything to you," he said, leaning forward, meeting Fen's gaze. "I don't answer to your lady."
"You don't answer to anyone, do you, Saul?"
"I might." One of the gold coins appeared in his hand. "But that answer costs. Is that what you brought me gold for?"
Fen scowled at her, then looked back at Saul. "No," she said. "It's not."
"Then you know the rules. No answers without pay. What do you want to know?"
"One of our sisters has gone missing," she said. "We have tracked her here."
Saul nodded, taking a sip of his bourbon. "Okay. Now we're getting somewhere. How long has she been missing?"
The three pixies looked at each other.
"About twenty years," Fen said.
Saul put his glass down. "Twenty years," he echoed, quietly. "She has been missing twenty years. And you are just now looking for her?"
"There has been... trouble, in the Blossom Lands. And there has been a shroud over our sight. Only a few short months ago, we felt her again. Here. Far from where we lost her."
"Fen. You are renowned in story. You are from an old proud pixie house. All accounts say that you could track a bat through a starless sky. And you could find no trace?"
She gritted her teeth and her eyes flashed like diamonds. "Prophet. Are you going to help us or not?"
"You've paid me in gold," he said with a grin. "I'll help." He put the gold piece on the table and spun it, watching as it twirled in the flickering neon light. "I see the sun setting over a hilled farm." His eye started to softly glow. "I see a long road to somewhere lost in shadows."
"Riddles," Lapis said. "Grand. Big surprise."
Petal kicked her under the table.
"I see the shadows growing longer. The darkness is incredible, overwhelming, but there is a toothy grin..." The lights in the bar went out for a moment, Petal jumped, and as she did, her elbow knocked over her mug. Beer sloshed across the table, and as the wave crashed into the coin its spinning stopped and it fell over. Saul stared at it for a moment longer, and the glow in his eye went out.
"So?" Fen asked after a long pause. "Where is she? What have you got?"
"Damned if I know," Saul said. "It's your riddle. I don't interpret. But the answer's there."
"You son of a bitch," Fen growled, and her knife was in her hand. She put it on the table. "You've been paid."
He looked at the knife. He looked up at her. "Gold from faerie," he answered. "So the answer is elusive and ephemeral. I don't make the rules, Fen."
"I don't give a redrum's ass about your rules." Fen narrowed her eyes, and her fingers traced down her blade. "Reveal what I need to know, or I will remove parts of you bit by bit until I find the answer."
Saul rolled his eye, picked up his glass and finished his bourbon. "Fine. No need for suffering. I'm going to take a piss. Then I'll tell you. Fair?"
"You can't just... hold it?"
"I've been drinking all night, and have just been threatened with savage torture by the Bloodhound of Pixieland. I'm bloody lucky I haven't wet myself."
A minute passed. Then two. Then three. Then five.
He didn't come back.
Fen growled. "Petal. Check."
"But it's the boy's room!"
"Just do it."
She pouted, and snuck over. She came back. "He's not there!"
"Big damn surprise. I knew he was up to something."
"What do we do?"
Fen picked up his glass. She sniffed it once, then twice, then a third time. "Simple," she said, then smiled. "We track the cowardly son of a bitch."