Chapter Twenty, Part Two: Black Pudding the ElderMature

“I know it’s you,” he quirks nasally, pitching a bit higher than normal, to preserve the purity of the performance. 

No sound, but stillness. 

A late hour amusement, then. 

Very well. 

Taking three more steps, he puts more space between himself and the pedestal, more space between himself and everything that happened to-day, taking pains to drain his facial muscles of their color just so, like a milky girl. 

He has seen a play or two, in his day; on the battlefield, in the squares, in the houses of law. 

“Do I require some prop, or will you provide a cue for me to improvise some invisible instrument?” he greets to the empty air, careful not to sweep his arms like a rampaging second rate theatre rat. 

He tips his left ankle slightly to the right, posing as if to take drink from a missing goblet. 

“Why don’t you come out of there, pest...” he calls, adding a touch of merriment to his smooth tones as his hunting eyes search the dancing shades of grey behind curtains and columns.  

No answer, of a course, save the splendid silence and himself, beating double as he breathes in the dust of his private little archive. 

But soon, but soon, a play of light casts itself, seeding a malevolent lantern across his back, the tip and tone of it cascading over ‘that’ pedestal, crawling beneath the only half-open case in the room. 

As he considers this new trick, it fails him to consider the shadows that are no longer dancing, watchful as he is of the now quickened number burning up the pedestal where the Right Hand rests.

The End

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