Robin woke from another bad dream.
A dream that left him trembling and crying.
Isellta didn’t call out his name.
Isellta didn’t rush to his side to find out what was wrong.
Robin wobbled up into a sit.
Isellta was not in his rocker.
Robin grabbed his pillow and tore it in half.
He threw both pieces on the floor – one at a time. Feathers floomed into the air and floated to the floor.
He sat there, panting.
Why ain’t he here?
Where is he?
WHERE IS HE?
He closed his eyes and mentally screamed Isellta’s name. Over and over and over.
His bedroom door slammed open.
Ambrose stood in the doorway with a bleary-eyed glare. “Shut. UP! I’m trying to sleep. I don’t need to listen to you braying for your fey lover.”
Robin threw his blanket aside and furiously got out of bed. “What? Who’s whose lover?”
“Oh, don’t play coy. Not when I’m this tired. It makes me want to smash things. Things like your stupid face.”
“That fey ain’t my lover.”
“Yeah. Yeah. Whatever. I see how you two are.”
“OH? AND HOW ARE WE?”
“TOO LOUD, YA BEER SWILLING MONKEY!”
Raven made his appearance behind Ambrose. “I’m sorry to interrupt, but why are you two making so much noise at this time of day?”
Ambrose snarled and jabbed an angry point at Robin. “He started it.”
“Very good, sir.” Raven rubbed his face. “And why, may I ask, did you start it, sir?”
Robin stomped his foot. “Isellta ain’t here.”
Raven lowered his hand. “I beg your pardon?”
“Isellta left me.”
“Perhaps he went out to get some fresh air, sir.”
“Or maybe he just wanted to get away from you.” said Ambrose.
Robin wobbled and sat down on the bed. “What? You sayin’ this is all my fault?”
Ambrose folded his arms across his chest. “Well, it sure isn’t my fault. For once.”
Robin saw the hurt look on Isellta’s face before he disappeared. “Don’t matter. I know where to find him.”
Ambrose marched up to the other vampire. “You put up that hoot and holler and you know where to find him? You disrupted MY sleep and you know where to find him?”
Ambrose punched him, insulted him in every possible way in French, and stormed out of the room.
“I’m sorry, sir. Mr. Smith is—”
“Don’t matter. I deserved that.”
“Do you wish for me to help you find him?”
Robin shook his head. “I can find him fine on my own.” He stood. “I’m fine. I don’t need anyone’s help.”
Raven looked like he wanted to object, but he bowed his head. “If you say so, sir.”
“I’m fine.” He stumbled and staggered to the doorway. He shoved Raven out of the way. “I’m fine.”
Dawn had come and stretched into day and warm, bright sunlight.
Robin’s day exhaustion dragged him down, but he was determined.
He kept walking and wobbling and staggering and stumbling all the way to The Red Envelope.
Robin didn’t wait for the hostess to show up. He headed straight for the room that Isellta always used.
A yuppie couple sat at the low table. Him in his polo shirt. Her in her ironed cardigan.
Isellta was not in there.
Robin went down the whole hallway, sliding doors open with too much force.
Isellta was not in any of the rooms.
Where is he?
Where is he?
Where is he?
The hostess made her appearance. “May I help you?”
“I’m lookin’ for someone. A scrawny little fey. Name’s Isellta. Is he here?”
“I know Isellta, but no. He isn’t here. Would you like to have a seat and—”
He pushed her out of his way and headed back outside.
The sun was too bright.
The air was too cold.
Robin was too tired to think.
But he thought.
It gave him a bad headache, but he thought of all the places a fey would go to hide. Especially a fey like Isellta.
His pupil widened as he figured it out.
He didn’t consider calling Raven for back up or a car ride.
Robin ran all the way back to Mark Caten’s Funorium.