"To market, to market, to buy a fat pig,
Home again, home again, dancing a jig;
To market, to market, to buy a fat hog;
Home again, home again, jiggety-jog;
To market, to market, to buy a plum bun,
Home again, home again, market is done."
by Mother Goose
In the Realm of the Seldarine:: The Trickster pondered the glass of wine in his hand as if it held all the answers to all the questions in all the universes. It didn?t, of course. It didn?t tell him where he might find his Goblet. He was the Chameleon, the Changeling, the Jack of the Seelie Court! This should not be happening to him! A frown tipped the corners of the Elven God?s lips downwards, and his eyes reflected his inner disturbance. Where had he left it? It was not often that a God lost something. It was even rarer, if he did mislay something, that he could not then find it! But of all the things to lose, how could he lose his Goblet? Not just any goblet, either, but his Ever-Full-Goblet (EFG)!! One hand, fingers long and supple, raised up to rake his shining golden hair back from his face. He had to get it back, and fast! If he didn?t, he would never hear the end of it from ?well, he wasn?t even going to think about all the folks who would comment snarkily on Erevan Illesere?s lack of EFG! The cup was a very convenient thing! He didn?t have to keep refilling the thing while enjoying his wine! It was rather beyond him to just poof into existence another just like it. Making artifacts was difficult, it took lots of time, and it made one sweaty with mussed hair! Staring deeper into his wine glass, he gave a little snarl before taking a long drink. Leaning back against his comfy, overstuffed armchair?.yeah, some Gods had thrones, he had an armchair?he let his chin slump down onto his chest.
No sooner had he gotten comfortable than there was a clatter of metal and wood and the bang of collapsing air from the area in front of him. He sat up and stared at the carved wooden box that had suddenly appeared. He looked around, but whoever had sent it seemed to have poofed out. Languorously, Erevan moved over to the box, kneeling down to open it, the light of curiosity clear in his green eyes. An elegantly formed brow raised up at the sight of a paper missive folded up within. He carefully pulled it out and rolled it open, beginning to read it. A startled look descended upon his expressive face, before an explosive curse blasted from him. The Unseelie King, Madoc Morfryn, had his EFG! His brows lowered into a thunderous frown, as he continued to read.
A confused look dawned in the green eyes of the Jack of the Seelie Court as he considered what the missive said. Apparently, Madoc had sent one of his unholy minions to steal the Trickster?s cup in one of his more ?inebriated moments. No wonder he could not remember what happened to it! The Unseelie King wanted some item held in Rhydin for his own. A teacup. What the king might want with a teacup, Erevan could not guess and really didn?t care. Madoc wasn?t going to let Erevan have his cup back until Erevan got it for him.
The God of thieves mulled over what was in the missive, slowly sitting back down in his armchair. Hmm. Rhydin. He couldn?t directly intervene there, at least not by going in and stealing something himself. The new Pact was clear on that kind of thing. No direct interventions that violated Rhydin law by either Seelie or Unseelie in the township of Rhydin. The place was now neutral ground. Oh, they could go there, they could get drunk there?something always important to Erevan?and they could be entertained there. However, they were not allowed any direct use of their powers to achieve something that violated the Rule of Rhydin law. They could, however, use others to achieve the same ends, as long as the Courts were not aware of it. There was always a loop hole if one looked hard enough. The Trickster rubbed his chin as he thought, pondering just how he could engineer things.
It seemed to him that a mortal thief could get the job done. The item that Madoc wanted, the teacup, was kept in some place called the SPI. Any good thief should be able to achieve the theft. The God turned his mind to whom he could send in there. There were any number of thieves about, of course, and lots of them in Rhydin. However, a thought occurred that made his sculpted lips smile. There had been a very sneaky attack made upon one of his special worshippers by that treacherous female, Araushnee, now known as Lolth, the Spider Queen. While his attention had been elsewhere, the venomous creature had caused a childhood illness to consume the girl. Before he had realized it, her life had been extinguished. He had meant to fix that, but had been distracted for some months by a nubile sprite. With this situation, he had a very nice opportunity to redress that sneak attack, and to discomfit the Spider Queen, all in one blow. And all with the happy bonus of regaining his EFG! A very pleased Erevan rose up and walked towards the far wall of his throne room, one hand waving and causing the wall to open up onto Limbo. With a silent little laugh, the Trickster entered that realm.
(Read the rest in the next post.)