to the whisker

Lorelei lurched through the door of the Emerald House, tuckered out from his morning burial of the unmissed bodies. His shovel clattered to the floor. He noticed something out of place inside his rooms and hesitated. He stepped towards the opened package on his table.

With care he noted the torn package paper, checked the label, and evaluated the coin line at the top.

“Pet,” he said quietly. “You’ve opened my mail.”

“Mmm,” Marrionetta was half sleeping in a pile on the floor.

“That isn’t very polite,” he said. He picked up the shovel again and moved towards her. “Honey sweet, I want you to consider this next question very carefully. Did you take any of those coins out of my package? I know how much you like shiny things.”

Marrionetta turned slowly towards him in a slumberous lurch. She spit on his shoe. “No,” she said and closed her eyes again.

Lorelei kicked her in the stomach and shoved the shovel’s edge under her chin.

“Are you quite sure about that? I know precisely how much is set to be in there. To the whisker.”

“I haven’t needed another man’s coin since before you were born you scum mucking, insolent quack.” Marrionetta said. “Only reason’s be I’m still here is those bubbly little goblins you’ve strewn me with.”

He glared down at her, a wrist’s flick away from separating her loud, annoying head from the rest of her more interesting body. He smiled at her.

“Of course,” he said. “Such a prideful little spite. How dare I assume you’d be interested in money. Please,” he reached out a hand to help her sit upright. She accepted.

His stomach gargled. “I don’t know about you but I’m feeling like frogs for lunch.”

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