Brak was, as he said, a bit of a modern day Robin
Hood. He stole from the rich, on the occasion he gave to the poor--but mostly
kept his prizes among himself and his friends--and played tricks on those he
didn't like. There were a lot of people Brak didn't like. Mainly those who reprimanded
or tried to harm him for stealing. But there were others. In fact, the person
Brak could tolerate least was actually a fellow thief. A fellow thief who was
very jealous of Brak and his world-renowned title of "Lord of the Alleys". Her
name was spoken softly and fearfully amongst those who new her. . .Bitsy!
Dingy Coffee-House, Mystery Island
"I'm sick of it!" Bitsy raged. The golden Aisha
paced across her pile of coins. "Sick, sick, sick! That little Lord of the Alleys
is more trouble than he's worth!" She glared at the pets gathered before her.
She had called an emergency meeting so she could get some screaming and yelling
out of her system. She stamped her foot and gold coins tumbled down from atop
the mound. A red Acara raised a paw.
"I thought you liked Brak!" the Acara called.
Bitsy's face flushed deep red.
"Maybe I do!" she hollered. She cupped her paw
and rested her chin in it thoughtfully. "Unfortunately, he's in love with that
meddling Kyrii! What's her name again? Lilly?"
"Leye!" a green Nimmo shouted. Bitsy grimaced.
"Leye," she seethed. "Little meddling brat! I
could be Empress of the Alleys if it weren't for her!"
The red Acara laughed. "I don't think so. Brak
hates you. It'd be hard to win him over!" she said.
"Did I ask for your opinion?!" Bitsy spat. "I
could win him over!" A grim smile crossed her face. "And that's what I plan
* * *
It had been almost a month since the hurricane had swept across Mystery Island.
Leye had done nothing but surf and think since. Presently, she sat on the beach
on a sunny morning. Her surfboard was planted in the sand nearby. The surf lapped
at her feet. She sighed and turned her face to the sun. The sky behind was an
intense, clear blue. Leye breathed deeply of the fresh salty air.
"Whatcha doing?" a voice said. Leye turned her
head and found herself facing Flaurin's smiling face.
"Sitting here," Leye retorted, her voice matter-of-fact
and free of anger.
Flaurin grinned. "May I sit here with you?"
Leye gave an over-exaggerated sigh. "If you must."
Flaurin brushed a piece driftwood from the sand and sat down. "Where's Brak?"
Flaurin's smile widened. "Getting lunch. There's
a Gourmet Clubbers convention down the beach. They've got enough food to feed
a herd of Elephantes!"
Leye looked slightly puzzled. "So he's stealing
Flaurin started. "Of course. Is there something
wrong with that?"
Leye shook her head slowly. "No, but doesn't
he worry about getting caught? I mean that Gelert at the Island Food shop looked
ready to kill."
Flaurin's eyes sparkled. "Don't worry about Brak.
He knows what he's doing." Leye nodded.
For a while they sat in silence. Flaurin dug
around in the wet sand, looking for sand crabs, and Leye simply stared at the
never-ending blue sky. Suddenly, a golden Aisha appeared in front of them. It
was Bitsy. At the sight of Flaurin and Leye sitting together, she smiled widely.
"Is Brak anywhere nearby?" she said in a high-pitched
voice. "I should just love to see him!" She batted her eyelashes. Leye blinked.
Flaurin was on his feet.
"Get out of here, Bitsy!" he snarled. "Brak never
has liked you, and he never will! So scat, cat!"
Bitsy pretended to look hurt. "I only wanted
to say hi," she whimpered. "I didn't mean to upset you."
Flaurin's eyes blazed. "Don't think I'm dumb!
Brak hates your living guts! So just go away!"
Bitsy's face soured. "You don't know what you're
talking about!" she said airily. "Brak's very fond of me."
Brak, who had walked up behind them dropped an
armload of Gourmet Food. His jaw dropped open. "I'm what?" he growled.
Bitsy started. "Oh! Brak! Why, I-I didn't know
you were. . ." she trailed off then gulped. "Here."
Brak's face pulsed with rage. "Get out of here,"
he seethed. "I don't want to see your slimy face AGAIN!!" he roared.
Bitsy started to walk away, then stopped and
faced Brak. "Do you-"
"LEAVE!" Brak bellowed. And that's just what
* * *
Back at the coffee shop, Bitsy sat on her daybed, nursing a broken pride. Her
self-appointed advisor, Rin, paced in front of her. She was a she was a disco
Aisha who had decided that she and only she was worthy of advising Bitsy.
"My face isn't slimy," Bitsy snapped. "It's perfect!"
Rin nodded absentmindedly. Bitsy continued. "I wish I could jinx him. Put a
curse on that slimy little--"
"That's it!" Rin cried, luckily interrupting
a sequence which would have been quite unprintable.
"That's what?" Bitsy glared at Rin, angry at
Rin's face was aglow with an understanding light.
"We can bewitch him," she breathed.
Bitsy raised an eyebrow. "Bewitch him? Who do
we know in the magic business? Don't even bother with that idiot Kauvara. She's
too immature. She wouldn't help us anyway."
Rin nodded. "You're right. But I'm sure an all-around
Aisha like you would know someone."
Bitsy knitted her brow in thought. Minutes passed.
Rin became impatient. Bitsy remained deep in thought. Suddenly, her eyes lit
"Rin, I think I know someone!" she cried.
Rin sprang to attention. "Who?"
Bitsy stood up and whispered something in Rin's
ear. Rin's eyes went wide and she smiled. "That would work! She'd be more than
willing to help. She doesn't even know who Brak is. But how do we get there?"
Bitsy bit her lip. "Who do we know with wings?"
Rin and Bitsy pondered, but this time, their answer came more quickly.
"Lynchly and Tellaie!" they cried in unison.
* * *
"I can't believe you blame me for this. It was entirely your fault."
"Well, if you wouldn't have caught the Sticky
Hand on her grenade, we would have won."
"Yeah right! You told me 'Go left, go left' so
I went left and ran into the bleachers!"
"What?! You went right! I said go left, but you
"I went left!"
"People, break it up!" Rin stepped between the
quarrel. A Kadoatie was perched on the head of a purple Eyrie. They were yelling
at each other loudly. Rin rolled her eyes and plucked the Kadoatie from the
The Eyrie shrieked. "My eyes, you thief! Put
her back!" the blind Eyrie cried in anguish.
"Stop fighting and I will," Rin reasoned.
"Sure, sure," the Eyrie said, waving a paw nonchalantly.
"Just put her back already!"
Rin set the Kadoatie down gently on the Eyrie's
head. Then she spoke to them. "Tellaie, Lynchly, Bitsy and I need your help."
The Eyrie called Lynchly raised his eyebrows.
"Yeah," Tellaie the Kadoatie piped up, "why?"
"We need you to fly us to Faerieland. We need
to speak to an acquaintance."
Bitsy stepped into view. "Yes, an acquaintance.
You wouldn't know her. She's a Faerie."
Tellaie shuddered. "Faeries are weird. Always
casting spells and muttering creepy incantations. Blech! I can't stand 'em!"
she said in a disgusted voice.
Bitsy eyed her oddly. "Yes, Tellaie, that's interesting.
I wouldn't tell any Faeries that if I was wise. So will you fly us there?"
Tellaie bent down and whispered into Lynchly's
ear. He nodded. "We will. But we have a price."
"Oh?" Bitsy asked skeptically. "And what is that?"
"If she's a Faerie, she'll know magic. Make her
turn me and Tellaie into humans."
To be continued. . .