True to my word, I went up to the palace to see if I could find Alec and do my survey of the proposed arena location. Loquax and Garrulous were unable to direct me to his whereabouts, so after I tired of their endless chatter, I returned to the tavern, thinking I could at least get on with the plans. There, I found a most strange and not very pleasant smell. It could mean only one of two things, either something had died, which, knowing the nature of the place, was not unlikely, or, Aoibheann was cooking again. I called out, asking if it was her, and on hearing her response, gave her a few moments. Sure enough, I heard what sounded like the clatter of dishes being scraped. I popped into the kitchen to find her sprinkling cinnamon on things, presumably trying to disguise the smell. We spoke about providing food for the kids, with her lamenting her lack of skill. I told her about the goldfish crackers, and we debated various ways of making them, and making them appear to be golden. In the end, we decided that was something better left to Mitternacht’s skills. I did tell her about the idea of cutting cheese into stars and ham into circles. She thought she could manage that, even if I did have to draw a star shape for her. That seemed such a strange thing to have to do, but I guess such symbols were not common where she comes from. I left her to her cooking experiments and went up to the castle again, just in case his majesty was around.
He was not, but on the way back down the stairs, I encountered that deranged child, Luna. She was in a foul mood, not that I have ever seen her in any other mood, because the party had been held without her, grumbling and complaining at the guards. I told her that everybody was invited, so it wasn’t our fault that she didn’t remember to go to it. This just seemed to make her worse, and it perturbed Loquax and Garrulous, who started to try to persuade her to come into the palace and see Hadley and Selena, and maybe take a bath. This did not improve Luna’s temper, as she was mad at Hadley and Selena for not waiting for her.
I am afraid I lost patience at this point and told her very pointedly that she was a very rude and filthy child and that she was lucky she got invited to anything at all. That just made her madder. She yelled that I was only saying that because I worked for the evil green lady, and that I shouldn’t make Sebastian, whoever that was, lose his temper. The guards were most perturbed, frantically waving at me to not argue with the child and trying to persuade her that she should come inside where everybody was waiting to apologise to her and they would give her red jelly and things. This I could not fathom at all. It was probably that sort of indulgence that brought on this sort of behaviour in the first place. So unless the child explodes, or starts biting and scratching like a rabid dog when she loses her temper, I do not know what the problem was. I decided I didn’t really want to know any more, told her she was an uncivilised child and left them to it, with the guards desperately trying to soothe the little brat. I guess I owe them a few more drinks now.