ii) “Mine ears are sharp too, lich,”

“Mine ears are sharp too, lich,” says Ulxurix. She’s appeared at the door, her tattoos winking and flowing as they move about her skin.

“Ah, the witch,” says Cang. “How do you like my current form?” He flares his hands for her appraisal.

“Short,” is all she says.

“Listen, Ulxurix, wizard, witch, whatever,” Shyan says. “Can we come in out of the rain?”

“No need,” says Fassn, again catching drops on his tongue. A crack of thunder spooks him and he darts inside.

Ulxurix lets him pass. “Of course, dears. But you know I’m not a witch.”

“Not a witch, right,” Shyan says. She lets Abia enter before her, and then the groaning creatures attendant to Cang follow behind. Horton, trembling, his eyes darting frantically about, is next, and at last only Cang and Shyan remain in the rain.

“We’re gonna get you back, buddy,” Shyan murmurs.

“Hm?” Cang says.

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