sea pushed her way to the front of the check-in line at the airport. Several of her fellow passengers protested, but they stopped when sea glowered at them over her dark sunglasses. She slapped her ticket down on the counter and asked who the pilot was for her flight.
'I'm sorry, ma'am, you're going to have to wait in the line like everyone else,'
the woman said sweetly.
sea took off her sunglasses and stared at the woman, who grew noticeably nervous. sea pulled out her ID and put it on the counter.
'I single-handedly give you most of your business. I pay your salary. I'm extremely hung over, and I have weapons to declare. Don't zark with me, and don't call me ma'am.'
'Y-you must be Miss B-black,'
the woman stammered.
'The rest of your party has already arrived. Please, go right in.'
sea pulled a bottle of bourbon off the drinks cart as it passed through first class. She uncorked it, took a swig, and offered some to Yo.
'Haven't you had quite a lot? I think maybe you should let me have that,'
Yo said, trying to pry the bottle out of her hand.
'If you value that opposable thumb, I suggest you release my bottle and leave me to my drunkenness,'
replied sea, in a sweet voice that indicated that Yo was in dangerous territory. He glared back at her.
'We have five days left. Is being completely smashed going to help?'
sea muttered something that Yo didn't quite catch.
'I'm afraid of flying!'
sea hissed, taking another long drink from the bottle. Yo smiled at her and gently took the bottle away.
'This isn't going to help, babe. Just breathe, okay?'
Yo patted her hand and noticed that she was gripping the armrest so hard that her knuckles were white. The plane's engines screamed to life and sea whimpered as they started down the runway. Yo pried sea's hand off of the armrest and held it gently. She looked at her hand for a moment, then leaned over and buried her face in his shoulder.
Later that night, in their hotel in London, Yo massaged his bruised hand and inspected the very distinct finger marks from where sea had gripped his hand all through the flight.
Everyone jumped as sea threw open the door to the hotel room and started tossing out orders. They had much to do and very little time in which to do it.
said Marv timidly.
'What are the chances of us getting to spend a little time out on the town?'
'What do you think this is, a vacation?'
sea let Marv worry for a moment, then winked at him.
'Well, I guess it wouldn't hurt. If we get all our arrangements made soon, we'll go out tonight.'
sea sat at the bar, nursing her brandy. She was only allowing herself one, as she had been somewhat tipsy all day after the flight, and didn't need a monster hangover in the morning. She looked over at Marv, who was on the dance floor with Gw7en and Yo. Marv was really quite good with those glowsticks, sea noticed. Affy sat beside her, drinking a rather strange-looking concoction that he had talked the bartender into making. sea made a face and called the girl over.
'Hi, um... what was your name? I'm sorry,'
'Quite all right,'
'I'm Shazz. What can I do for you?'
'Soeasilyamused Black. Nice to meet you.'
sea shook Shazz's hand.
'I just have a question. What was it you made for my friend over there?'
'I have no idea. He told me what to mix, and I mixed it.'
'Though I'll admit that I don't know much about drinks. I only bartend part-time. I'm also a copy editor for the London Post. Someday, I hope to have my own newspaper...'
'Well, good luck to you. Here,'
sea slid a 100 Moxon note across the bar.
'Maybe this will help.
'Oh, no, I can't! It's too much.'
'Take it! I hope you get your newspaper. Now I've got an early day tomorrow, I've got to be going. Have a good night, Shazz.'
sea said, standing up and nodding to Affy, who also stood. They went over to the dance floor to get Marv, Gw7en and Yo.
Shazz pocketed the Moxons and watched the five adventurers leave, then she turned to the phone and made a call.
'They've left. No, just now,'
she said, glancing around.
'Okay, will do. Goodbye.'
Shazz hung up the phone and shook her head, then took out a damp rag and started to wipe down the bar.
Who did Shazz call? Is she allied with Uncle Heavy? Is this an unnecessary character assassination of the wonderful editor of the h2g2 Post? When will this story get good?! Find out next week!