Puppies playing in the new snow. Kittens sleeping with their mother. Baskets of tourmalines and cubic zirconias. So many colors and textures. The smell of a new day. Becoming skye. Flying through the night and greeting the dawn. Lee. Becoming skye with Lee. Flying with Lee. Trying to impress her with my flying skills.
Sammy exhaled and opened his eyes. “Why exactly do you want either of us to go there?”
“I beg your pardon, sir.” Raven said. “It is hardly a place I wish to go near. Yet, I fear for Robin’s safety.”
Sammy kept his emotions in the tightest possible lockdown and his facial expression tightly neutral. “Why?”
“Ambrose recently received a phone call from Robin. It sounded like Robin. He seemed to be okay. He seemed to be safe and reunited with Isellta.”
Raven sighed. “Yet, there was something about the call that left Ambrose with a sense of unease. He feels that it was a deception.”
“Who does he think is behind it?”
“Queen Preyuna of the fey.”
That got Lee’s attention. “To what end? Why would a queen waste her time making prank calls? Seems like a silly thing to do.”
“It would seem so.” Raven frowned. “Yet, I do not believe she meant it as a mere prank. If Queen Preyuna is the one who made that call, it was not a matter of mere tomfoolery. There is a reason for it. There is something more going on and I intend to get to the bottom of this matter.”
Sammy tried to think of a good reason why Preyuna would make such a phone call. He couldn’t think of one. It was just all too strange and irregular. “What do you suspect?”
“I cannot fathom her motivation, sir. Yet, I suspect that Robin might still be there.”
Sammy’s calm façade cracked. Horror seeped into his voice as he said, “You think Mark Caten is holding him prisoner.”
A nearby stop sign warped and wilted to the ground.
Bluebirds. Blue skies. No clouds. Deep blue sapphires. Dark blue of the ocean.
Lee spread her hand on Sammy’s lower back.
The stop sign unfurled and returned to its normal straight-backed shape. Not even a single letter was out of place.
“I do, sir. It is possible that phone call was meant to lull us into a false sense of security. Robin is safe. There is nothing to worry about. Nothing to bother investigating.”
Lee smiled. “So, of course you’re going to investigate.”
“I feel I must. Robin is part of my family. I do not want him to suffer as Ambrose did—trapped in some God-forsaken display.”
A small-second image flashed in Sammy’s mind: A triangular one-story building – wide in front, narrow in back, as flat as a slice of pumpkin pie.
He remembered the bitter cold.
The stop sign uprooted from the pavement and pitched itself to the other side of the street. It landed face first on the sidewalk over there.
Sammy crushed down his fear and anger. “I will go with you.”