Owl Be There
Byline: Gary Llewellyn
Dateline: July 22nd, 2017
No one demon is going to lend you a hundred legions of spirits, inferior or otherwise. So the idea is to hit up all seventy two of these assholes for a legion or two. Even if I strike out a few times I’ll make out okay. I’m calling in a lot a favors on this one and will probably owe a lot more by the end. Today’s pidgeon is an owl. An owl that wears a crown, so yeah, a real shit bag. His name is Stolas and he runs an herb store in North Philly. Now technically, I’m not allowed to set foot within Philadelphia city limits, and normally, that suits me just fine, but this Stolas cat freaks me out. His eyes are huge and he never blinks, so I want to get him out of the way as soon as possible. Plus, this cat commands twenty six legions of demons. Scoring one of those, this early in the game, would really move the project forward.
I entered his shop around noon and he had his face buried in book. He glanced up.
“Huh,” he buried his face back in his book. “Llewellyn,” he grunted taking a sip of tea.
“Stolas,” I replied and didn’t look up. Good. Just don’t stare at me. If he keeps his eyes in his book and off me, I can maybe…no, it’s just as bad in three quarter profile.
“I suppose you’re looking for your money?”
Oh shit, this dude owes me money. Jackpot, “I’m actually here for something better than money.”
“Is that right?” he looked up.
Fuck, he’s looking at me. “Yeah…that’s right.”
He sighed and rolled his eyes, which oddly enough, kind of took the edge off. Now, he reminds me of something, but I can’t put my finger on it.
“I need to borrow a few legions,” I said.
“What in the hell do you need legions of demons for?”
“I’m taking down the Man.”
“Why do you need demons?”
“Because when you go at the Man you go hard.”
“You read too many serials. Pick up a novel every now and then,” he lifted his book. “Nicholas Sparks. Wonderful stuff. Why should I lend you my legions?”
“You lend me the demons. I call off the debt.”
“Right. Twenty dollars. Forgiven.”
“Get out of my store.”
“Come on, Stolas. I’ll owe you one.”
“What could a junkie journalist have or do for me that I could possibly want. Out.”
I paused. Maybe too long, he looked me right in the eyes. Dirty pool, Stolas. But still an urge welled up from within me. One I could no longer deny.
“Professor?” I said, breaking the thick silence. “How many licks does it take t….”
He threw his book at me and swore a lot. I split.
Well, SEG-ers, I struck out. It was long shot, we never did much get along. At least I have Azmoday’s spirits. Which, reminds me, I got pretty blasted last night and mistook the wormwood for something I could smoke. So now I have a legion of unclean spirits crammed into my room at the airport La Quinta. I know they’re running up the room service bill. They started with that shit as soon as they figured out the phone.
The Brave and Kobold
Byline: Stephanie Morgan
Dateline: July 22nd, 2017
Howdy, SEG-ers. This week I’m taking a look at the small, but helpful kobold. Switzerland is crawling with these little guys. I had about five hiding in the hotel room the Interpol jerks had me locked up in. Yep, you read that right, SEG-er’s, ‘had.’ ‘How?’ you might ask. The short answer: kobolds!
Kobolds are these tiny little guys who have this so-ugly-it’s-cute thing going on and they’ll do chores for you. Like subduing Interpol agents. I don’t think it was necessary to break their necks. I think I’m going to be spending a long time wondering if I’m responsible for that. Should I have specified ahead of time that murder was off the table? I first noticed them last weekend. It started with them just getting me glasses of water and stuff, but it just escalated and shit started getting real and now five men are dead. They didn’t even seem bothered by it. It was just like they were opening jars of pickles. Pop one lid and move to the next. They didn’t blink, they didn’t wince, their expressions were dry and clinical to the point of nonchalance. And it wasn’t like they paused to consider options, once I gave them the request they hopped on the agent’s shoulders and snapped their necks. Have you ever looked into someone’s eyes the moment the light goes out? What was once a thinking, feeling entity is now just a pile of meat and bone. I can still hear that sound; a dull crack like a light switch being flipped. But that’s not what freaks me out. What freaks me out is that this isn’t freaking me out. Maybe it’s shock. Maybe it’s my preoccupation with concealing my identity, with hiding in plain sight as make my way to Geneva. I feel like Carmen Sandiego or a fugitive Dora.
As the train from Geneva wobbled through Lyon heading south to Avignon and I looked out at the landscape slipping by, my thoughts turned to the south of France and the new friend we had made there. I need to get to Barcelona and ask a friend for help.