|Give Me Something Good To Eat|
"Maybe the mansion will shift before ssshe gets back and I'll finally be rid of her," she spoke out loud. "But I'm not that fortunate. No," her other head agreed glumly. "Not that fortunate at all."
As if on cue, Bat appeared, flying over the garden wall. Or perhaps flying was too generous a term. Her overstrained wings could barely keep her airborne. She bobbed up and down like a drunken yo-yo, barely missing a tree branch (which seemed to move to block her way). Finally she landed awkwardly on the head of a statue and flipped over on her back, sucking in air.
"Good morning," Hydra said pleasantly. "Enjoy your outing?"
"I'm gg... I'm gonna throw up," Bat gasped between breaths.
"No, you can't."
"Even if you try."
"I made sure of that."
"I'll kill you!" Bat tried to scream, but it came out as little more than a whisper.
"Happy Halloween, sweetie," Hydra said with a grin and a chuckle as she turned and slithered away.
For the next few minutes the garden was quiet, with the only sounds being Bat's labored breathing. Then her sensitive ears picked up soft movement. She raised her head and squinted her eyes to see a small audience had gathered. A couple she knew, Spots the leopard girl and that dumb donkey centaurette that had been nicknamed Ears. There was also one of the cows from the barn, a young human scullery maid and big surprise, a curious satyr. Ordinarily none of them would come near her by choice, but in her current condition there was nothing she could do and they knew it. "What do you want?" Bat forced out, trying to be threatening, but only sounding tired.
**Not that any of us care, but what did she do to you?**
Bat looked around, then realized the question had come from the gryphon statue she was lying on. What neither Hydra nor Bat had yet realized was that their continuous battle had become a source of sport for the residents of the estate, who otherwise had very little entertainment. Some chose sides or even made bets and tales of each new exploit would quickly spread. Plus there was the more practical fact that as long as Hydra and Bat were tormenting each other, everyone else was left alone. Bat's only answer was to moan and rub her wings over her huge taut stomach. "Ooooh, I feel like I ate a bowling ball."
"Did you eat a bowling ball?" Ears asked timidly.
"No!" Bat snapped.
"Maybe she's pregnant," said Spots.
"Could Hydra do that?" asked the cow girl in a low voice Bat could still hear perfectly well.
"I don't know, but I don't want to find out," Spots replied.
Ears looked confused. "She's pregnant with a bowling ball?"
Bat had heard all she could take. "No, I'm not pregnant!! If you must know, Hydra turned me into one of those plastic buckets used to hold Halloween candy. A little girl found me outside the gate and carried me all over the neighborhood. This morning at sunrise when I changed back to normal.... all that candy stayed inside me, wrappers and all! There was even a couple of toys and.... ouch!.... a pencil."
Often when a gentle breeze would blow through the gardens of the Sorceress, it would carry with it soft cries of dispair. But now a much rarer sound was drifting on the wind. The light airy sound of laughter.
Bat's tiny face burned. "Shut up!" she yelled at the plants and statues around her. "I'll make your lives a hell!" Instead of silencing the noise, the threat only seemed to make the giggling grow louder. Feeling her anger suddenly overwhelmed by a wave of nausea, Bat groaned and slowly let her head sink back down to the cool stone. "Why is everybody picking on me? This is all Hydra's fault! I'll get her. If she wants a holiday prank, I'll give her one. What is the next big holiday?"
"Suzzahna's Leaf Dance, celebrating the annual sleep of the dryads," replied the satyr.
Bat gave an exasperated sigh. "Human holiday," she growled through her teeth. "Do you know what the Sorceress would do to me if I in ANY way acknowledged a satyr holiday?!"
"Thanksgiving," the scullery maid offered meekly.
"Yes, That's it. Thanksgiving. Perfect. That poor little girl lost all of her Halloween treats. I'll make it up to her by sending her family the biggest, fattest turkey anyone has ever seen!" Bat grinned and her eyes narrowed. "A turkey with two heads."