“I told you not to drink Blue Moon,” sighed Edith, watching Tilly stagger into the room.
“What gave it away?” whispered Tilly, squinting, trying to hold her head on with her hands.
“Your lips are blue.”
“Oh. Oh, yeah.”
“Did you have fun?” asked Edith, merrily.
“I can’t believe Jimi dedicated the Star Spangled Banner, to YOU.”
“Is there anyone you DON’T know?
Edith thought for a minute and then said, “No, I don’t think so.”
“Greatest concert EVER,” said Tilly, lowering herself to the floor. “No doubt about it.”
“Yes, it was wonderful,” agreed Edith, a far away look in her eyes.
“You can really sing. You rocked the house,” smiled Tilly. “I thought Keith was going to take a bite out of you.”
“Oh, no. We don’t do that anymore,” said Edith, warmly.
“You and Keith? When do you have the time? You’re always HERE!”
“I Hop dear. I Hop,” she snickered, putting books into the White Dog’s basket. “Please take these to room 309,” said Edith, to the Dog. “Tell the recipient that I’ll send tea up in a moment.”
The White Dog nodded and toddled away, pulling his wicker cart behind him.
“Who’s in 309?” asked Tilly ”
“You’ll find out tonight.”
“Last night I saw Miss Marple in the hallway leading to the Room of Mysteries. It’s possible that I just drank too much Blue Moon, however, so don’t take my word for it.”
“She’s here. She’s working on a case and needed some information,” said Edith. “Sir Gawain is here as well. His steed is in the barn.”
“He brought his horse?”
“He rode his horse,” said Edith.
“Old school?” asked Tilly.
“Definitely,” nodded Edith.
“Merlin certainly had the crowd’s attention when he spoke about the war,” sighed Tilly. “No one wants to go to war.”
“Some do, that’s the problem.”
“Can’t we all just live together peacefully? Why can’t the faerie folk live with us in this reality, they seem very nice.”
“They can’t live with us for several reasons,” said Edith. “They have too much power for one thing. They could use their magic on humans and no one would even know. They feel that we are far less than they are, and if you consider their magick, they’re right. But humans have things they don’t have.”
“We can lie,” laughed Edith. “They can’t. But they can twist words and make you believe they are saying something they aren’t. We don’t have Rulers we must answer to but they are gorgeous, graceful and faster than you can imagine. They don’t like humans except as prey or to use in their games.”
“Ah,” smirked Tilly, “the good the bad and the beautiful.”
“Very beautiful. Amazingly beautiful,” said Edith. “But more than that, they could take over, use us for procreation, and turn us into their servants and make us like it. The faeries you have met are under a geas that prohibits them from using magick on humans, or tricking them in any way.”
“So, if there’s war and the faeries win….”
“Yes, Tilly, things will go badly for humans.
“You have no idea how badly,” hissed the Cheshire Cat, his smile appearing over the end of the counter. “I’m hoping they win,” he purred.
Edith placed a pinch of Nip under the smile and watched it disappear.
“Edith, my love,” said the cat, coming in to view, rolling in the Nip. “You spoil me.”
“I spoil everyone Ches,” said Edith, rubbing his ears.”
“Did you see the invisible trio last night?” he asked, flopping on to his side. “I was one of the only ones who could see them.”
Edith and Tilly snickered. “Of corse you were,” said Edith.
“They’re here, you know,” said the Cat, lazily. “More Nip, pleeeezzzzee,” he begged, his eyes starting to close.
Edith gave him another pinch and said, “Who’s here?”
The Cat looked around and waved her closer with his front paw. “The Fae. I saw three of them at the party last night.”
“Free Fae?” asked Edith.
The cat nodded and fell asleep.
“They’re here,” said Edith. “They got into the Bookstore. That means they got through the Wards, through the Magick.”
“That’s not possible,” said Tilly, grinning. “No one can do that, right?”
“MERLIN,” screamed Edith.