“We heard that some humans were looking for information about the murder at the Haven, and when we heard that the humans were August and Minerva, we decided that we should come forward. We heard about what you did for Tobias, and felt that you could be trusted.” said Jacob. Minerva listened carefully to his words, watching his aura for any trace of untruth. “Then, we saw you talking with Piggy, and we knew we’d have to come forward. He’s one of her creatures, through and through.”
“And a disgusting creature at that.” remarked Emma with a twitch of her tail. “A beggar and a thief, and if you get close enough, and feel bad enough, he’s got a knife for your belly. More human than animal, if you ask me.”
“You must forgive Emma. She cannot understand the terrible cross that Piggy bears.” said Jacob, soliciting a sideways glance from the cat-girl. “He needs to cooperate with Lana, or else she’ll set her goons on him. She’s done it before.”
“He thinks we’re with Lana. He thinks that we’re following you, and that we’re threatening you right now.” stated Jacob.
“That Elf, she wasn’t always an Elf. She used to be an Otherkin, a pretend were-panda.” said Emma, rolling her eyes. “She went to meet with someone, and on the next night, she wasn’t her old, mundane self anymore. Her appearance changed, but her scent was the same. She was fine for a week, and then she collapsed.”
“And the rest, you know.” finished Jacob, slurping his chai loudly in an attempt to drink it all. As if to punctuate his sentence, the heavy glass door flew open. August, dressed in a black three-piece suit and tie, stood next to Tobias, who was wearing a baggy hunter green hoodie. Jacob looked up at the pair, seemingly unimpressed.
“This is the rest of your team then?” asked Jacob in a venomously sarcastic tone. “Rage and brutality, that’s what those two are. I heard about what happened at the hospital; your adventures have caught many eyes.” Tobias and August exchanged puzzled glances, not knowing how to react.
“We just do the best we can,” assured Minerva, “and sometimes things get out of hand.” She was trying her best to change the mood to something more amicable, but Jacob wasn’t helpful.
“Out of hand? Like the vampire that slipped through your fingers?” Jacob sniped, standing face to face with August. Tobias restrained himself, but Emma could see the sharp, werewolf’s claws growing from his fingertips, which prompted her to put a hand on Jacob’s shoulder.
“Sometimes, these things cannot be helped.” said Emma, studying both Tobias and August. Each was on edge, and were not in a jovial mood, so she simply smiled apologetically and guided Jacob out the door.
“Who were they?” asked August, visibly irritated.
“Informants, seemingly with good information.” replied Minerva.
“Not very friendly.” said Tobias gruffly. “At least the beak-face wasn’t. So, what did you find out?”
“I found out quite a lot. Apparently, our Elf was not always an Elf.” announced Minerva quietly.
“I knew it!” exclaimed Tobias. If there had been any other customers in the tea bar, they’d have turned their heads and then complained about his outburst. “I was just telling August that I thought the Otherkin were looking for a way to actually become something more than human.” Tobias sat down, leaned back, and glowed with pride.
“We saw King Bodon’s star imprinted on the Elf’s heart, which seemed like conclusive proof of his involvement.” explained August, who folded his arms and began to pace.
“I also noticed something that you mustn’t have seen in the darkness of the club at night. It was a symbol; I don’t know what it was drawn in, but it was barely visible. From what I could tell, it was a magic circle, intended to entrap a soul.” said Minerva. “It looks like King Bodon might have been giving out favours, and then collecting his debts through Lana, or at least through The Haven. I really don’t know what to think of her.”
“Did your two informants tell you how the human became an Elf?” asked Tobias, hoping to hear Minerva respond with she went to King Bodon, and yes Tobias, you were right.“Unfortunately no.” responded Minerva. Tobias shrank in his seat, feeling deflated.
“All the pieces are there, and they all fit.” said Tobias, absent mindedly rubbing his finger in a circle on the table top. “But what’s missing?”
“How they meet King Bodon. Is he coming to them, or is he being called on? If he’s being called on, how long is it before his conjurer cannot contain him?” mused August out loud.
“I think we need someone to go undercover and find out more. If it is a conjurer, then we’ll need to find out where, when, who, and how. The only way we’ll get all of that is if someone can gain the trust of one of the people at The Haven.” said Minerva.
“You could try talking to your informants again.” suggested August.
“Yeah, but I’m worried. It seems like they’re sticking their necks out awfully far.” she responded. “We need someone that they don’t know, and would not expect to be linked to us, or our investigation.”