Clad in her travel clothing of doeskin jerkin and breeches, Talpianna double-checked the supplies laid out on the bed, as no doubt the others planning to join the rescue party were doing elsewhere in the Inn. Packets of medicinal and magical herbs, charged powerstones, a supply of handkerchiefs, Su-Shi, two precious parcels of Elven lembas—
Talpianna glared at the mole with the perky vibrissae. “Su-Shi, this is not a party of pleasure. I don’t have time to take care of you. We will be traveling fast and facing unknown dangers.”
The mole executed a couple of inexpert katas. “Ka-bam! Shazam! Cowabunga, dude! Kiku and me are as good as an army!”
“The Salvation Army, maybe. And it’s ‘Kiku and I.’”
“That’s what I said.”
Tal picked Su-Shi up by the collar between her thumb and forefinger and deposited her outside the door.
Just as well, thought Su-Shi. I forgot my makeup kit. Wait till sister Kiku sees what I can do to the forces of evil with an eyelash curler.
Talpianna turned back to her expedition supply list. Spunky ranger-girl with healing powers, check. Taciturn experienced fighter with mysterious past, check. Callow farmboy with far-reaching destiny, check. Annoying talking animal for comic relief . . . Damn! She opened the door and grabbed Su-Shi back.
Opening: Tal.....Continuation: Batgirl