“Tilly…your arm,” said Chicago, reaching for her. “The mark where your dragon used to be is filling in.”
“It started a few days ago, but I can’t make out what it is,” said Tilly, staring at the beginning of her new tattoo.
“Another dragon perhaps?” asked Chicago. “That would make sense.”
“I don’t know,” sighed Tilly. “It’s like the Angel statue’s wing. Everyday I hope her wing will be bigger and I suppose it is, but it’s taking sooooooooooo long to grow.”
“I feel your pain,” laughed Chicago. “You did a good job with Sig, by the way.”
“I couldn’t help myself,” laughed Tilly. “Hey, do you think Merlin has a thing for Edith?”
“Certainly not!” said Chicago, rather loudly. “Why? Do you think he does?”
“Maybe. He’s always watching her and he brings her little gifts.”
“They would make a cute couple,” said Chicago, thoughtfully, tapping her lips with her finger.
“Who would make a cute couple?” asked Edith, walking up to the counter, grabbing a hand full of papers.
“You and Merlin,” snickered Tilly. “You guys are adorable together.”
“I told you, there’s nothing going on between us,” said Edith breezily.
“Tonight is the first night of the Unusual Things Convention,” said Chicago. “Has everyone arrived.”
“Not quite,” said Edith, checking her list. “We are short a few Covens and there is a pack of weres’ that haven’t signed in yet.”
“What kind of weres’?” asked Chicago. “I know the wolves are here.”
“Chickens,” said Edith. “Werechickens.”
“Is she kidding?” asked Tilly, looking at Chicago hopefully.
“I rarely kid,” said Edith, continuing to sort things into piles.
“What’s on the agenda for this evening?” asked Chicago, changing the subject.
“Werechickens?” asked Tilly, once again. “Seriously?”
“Yes,” said Edith. “Seriously.”
“Are they adorable or vicious?” asked Tilly. “I mean, they could go either way.”
“Both,” answered Edith. “They can peck harder than you would believe and they use their talons as weapons. They have human intelligence, that’s what truly makes them dangerous. And stop saying werechickens!”
“It’s really hard not to say it,” sputtered Tilly, covering her mouth with both hands.
“Do your best,” said Edith firmly. “In answer to your question, Chicago, there will be live entertainment, a banquet, and a short Show and Tell. During the Show and Tell different groups will preview what’s to come tomorrow night when they unveil their latest inventions.”
“Live entertainment?” asked Tilly. “Who?????” she squealed, jumping up and down.
“Queen, Aerosmith, a group called Tin Robot, Bono, The Bloody Pines and a few others. Personally I like Tin Robot but I’m a big Queen fan so….”
Tilly was speechless. “Am I dead?” she whispered, pinching herself.
“I would have noticed,” said Edith, stamping the date on several invoices. “Although around here it is sometimes hard to tell.”
“It’s like a dream come true, I….” Tilly sat on the floor. “Werechickens and Rock and Roll Gods. It doesn’t get any better than this.”
“I hope that’s not true,” laughed Chicago. “And you’re not supposed to say werechickens.”
At that, Tilly and Chicago started laughing hysterically
“They are normal human beings who just happen to morph into chickens,” said Edith. “Now, can we please change the subject.”
“Do they like candy corn?” whispered Tilly, falling backward in another fit of hysterics.
The gray cat walked into the room and stared down at his gurgling friend. “What’s with her?”
“Never mind,” said Edith, watching the cat climb onto Tilly, looking for a place to nap.
“Werechickens,” said Chicago.
The cat grinned…widely. “I love those guys,” he purred, licking his paw. “Just love them. Did you know that chickens can run pretty fast?”
“NO CHASING, OR STALKING, remember?” said Edith, a bit more loudly than she had intended.
“Yeah, yeah,” he said, but the gleam in his eyes implied something entirely different. “Are the hens coming along?”
“Three of them,” said Edith.
“Lizzy?” asked the cat hopefully. “She’s beautiful and a lot of fun. She’s pure white when she turns.”
“Yes,” sighed Edith, putting her head in her hands. “I have so much to do and none of it has to do with chickens.”
“Excuse me,” said Merlin.
“Oh, sorry,” said Edith, straightening her Tin Robot t-shirt. “What can I do for you?”
“Uh, I can actually think of any number of things you could do for me, but all of them are best left for later,” he whispered wickedly. “I’ll need time on tonight’s schedule to talk about the possibility of war,” he said, suddenly solemn.
“I’ll pencil you in,” said Edith. “Is eleven, okay?”
“Yes, thank you. Eleven will be perfect,” he answered, bowing slightly and opening his robe to show her his Stones t-shirt.
“The Rolling Stones?” she asked, taken back. “Well, that explains a lot.”
“I like Keith Richards,” chuckled Merlin. “I think he’s going to live forever.”
“Doesn’t everyone?” asked Chicago.
“Yes,” chuckled Merlin, “but not in the same body.”