“They are down here, Mehgudi,” murmurs a young voice, spear-sharp and alarming. “With Me.”
The Pythia looks down, and sees...
Two naked feet, sweet, succulent toes. A violet-eyed child of six. Long hair the color of fresh cut creamy onions. A violent-eyed child of six. Long hands for her age, clean knees.
A strange delight expounds upon itself within the tortured confines of the Pythia’s face, recalling wrinkles and brown skin and yellow silks pleasing to the touch of the needy young.
Two little feet, and no flies.
“Are you one of the day workers?” she mumbles half to herself, taking in the heart-face of this young slip of girl. “I... I was served by such a girl once... you remind me of her. You may... you may stay here, in my palace with me, eat my food. Here.” She waves her arm over Raskelin’s open mouthed head then swipes her arm across her teeth, almost distractedly.
“I want you to meet my advisors, Mehgudi.” The little girl breathes, swaying her own arms out in a sweep toward the silvery things standing behind the blue bowl throne. “The Master, the Soldier, and the Threefold Man.”
Men come then, tromping softly behind the girl child.
From the right, a blonde man in a hooded coat; stubble pricks his chin. He bends to embrace the child, his hands enfolding her protectively. He scowls at the Pythia, then shivs the air with his finger, in the direction of the throne.
“The bitch stole my chair. Go and get her my darling.”