Padishar found me in my favourite place by the shore. He asked me what I was willing to trade for Rachel’s true name.
As it turned out, I did not know. We talked for a long time about what such deals mean, how agreements work, what was valuable, and what was not.
He frightened me. I thought at first he would hurt me, but it seems he’s fighting some inner terrors that are tormenting him. I guess it’s good to know that happens to demons as well. In the end, we agreed on information. I made a gaffe: I did not understand the intricacies of his position in the Unseelie Court, but now I do.
So I will be his spy, learning as much as I can about the Lord of the former Castle Shithole (whatever they’re calling it now), the Sluagh, the Seelie, anything he could use for, he said, “security”. I initially offered three months; he would only accept an open-ended offer. “Until we agree otherwise,” he said. He promised not to abuse me. He said there would be no death involved. He said he would take good care of me. I do not know what that means.
But what I do know is Rachel’s true name. And no one would ever have guessed it. I would not have guessed it in a million years. Lettice. Pronounced like the crunchy vegetable. Lettice Fairhope.
Oh, Miss Lettice, when you and I meet again, we will be on even footing. Perhaps I’ll even have the upper hand.
Nathaniel told me I should be very careful with Padishar. And Padishar asked me to agree not to speak of our agreement with anyone.
I want to feel clever about this. I want to feel I’ve now got the leverage Valene said I should strive to acquire over Rachel. But I’m also feeling anxious. How often will Padishar expect reports from me? We didn’t clarify that. I will have to ask him. And just because he said he wouldn’t abuse me– yeah, maybe I should have got concrete examples of all this stuff. I’m told you have to be very exact in your language with these beings. On the whole though, I think I got off pretty lightly. It could have been much, much worse.
Of course, I have a feeling Valene wouldn’t like the manner in which I have acquired said information.
But, knowledge is knowledge, and knowledge is power, and I have more now than I did this morning. Even if I did have to taste spicy demon blood to get it. I went back to the cavern and had as much mint tea as I could drink immediately.
And I made up a little song!
Lettice, Lovely Lettice,
Sounds like such a tasty snack,
But Lettice, Lettice, Lettice,
She will stab you in the back!