Head down on her desk, hands clutched over her head, Janice Sanderson wallowed in her misery. All of her appointments were canceled for the next three days, she didn’t want any of her normal patients to be endangered by the coming meeting and she planned o being drunk for the next day or two. Unfortunately, do to her Valkyrie nature, enhanced by the Fae power that she’d absorbed, mortal alcohol had very little effect on her. She was going to have to drink enough to kill a normal person to get to the state she wanted.
She didn’t look up as she heard the door opening, right on time as normal. “Come to gloat at the pawn who dared to try and become something greater. The old leash on me still chaffs as much as ever and hurts even more after I’d had that brief taste of freedom.”
“Actually I expected your traitorous ‘ally’ to have destroyed you by now.” Lady Lila’s voice was cool and collected. “Your ability to resist his mental attacks and Vatterung’s intersession caused me to lose the bet I had with the Winter Lady. As a result I’m going to have to ask you to resume our sessions, minus the power stealing of course. Fortunately I am in one of my better moods at the moment so I thought it would be a good time to start.”
Raising her head Janice looked at the beautiful, calm woman now occupying the chair in the corner. The one positioned so that the occupant could talk without looking at anyone. With the shock of that statement Janice’s thoughts turned to something besides her own misery.
‘She’s actually beginning to recognize her own moods, maybe not to the point of controlling them but she is recognizing them.’ Janice desperately tried to get into the proper mindset for a session, desperately clawing her way out of her own black despair. “Do you want me to carry out my end of the bargain or do you want to start?” Janices voice was steady despite her efforts.
Lila shifted to a seemingly more comfortable pose in the chair. “You can begin, I’m not quite ready to answer those ‘Tell me about your father’ questions so beloved by the movies.”
Janice moved to the chair positioned just to the side of Lila’s. Set back a little so that she was still not in the Fae’s sight but without the standoffishness of the desk between them. Janice had her pad and pencil at hand but did not need them until Lila’s part of the deal resumed.
“Not much to tell about us at this time. Like always each of us received their marching orders in various ways. I think the Doom hanging over us is conniving to increase the pressure on us to do what it wants.” Janice turned her head to stare out the window. “We meat with the protector of the Elfstones and did a little investigation of the theft. We gathered some information and found that one of the new occupants of the location was a demon of some type or other. Using various means we tracked one of the other stolen items to an underground market that specializes in the trafficking of the non-mundane. We managed to track down the dealer who had purchased the item and managed to gain information on who had done the actual theft.”
“The item you tracked, was it a sword or a tiara?” Lila’s soft voice stilled Janice’s recitation.
Weighing the question in her mind for a bit Janice answered truthfully. “A sword, we managed to recover it and return it to its owner.”
“A pity, please continue with your tale.”
Janice still did not look at Lila. “Recovering the actual stones proved to be more complicated. The weird elves that had stolen the stones lost them to a raid by forces either hired or coerced to invade their home by Illidan Stormrage. During our hunt for him and his forces his main ally, Alice Angus, broke with him violently and stole the stones. Like our deal with you we agreed to help him get his wishes in such a way that it doesn’t endanger this world and we started hunting Alice.”
“We tracked down the Gypsy Morph and used her for bait to finally kill Alice and secure the stones, returning them to their caretaker.” Janice looked over at the back of Lila’s head.
“During this several distractions caused comlications. Noonien’s girlfriend had been captured by the white court as a favor for the black court. We had to rescue her and arrange for treatment to break her of their addiction powers.”
“We also found out that someone I thought I had disposed of, with the help of my erstwhile ally, was back. My ally supposedly decided to send her back to this world enhanced by the power of darkness he controls. She’s looking for who supposedly betrayed her and will probably try to kill me when she remembers, so there is still a chance that our sessions will end prematurely.”
Janice’s voice turned strained as she fought to subdue the emotions threatening her self-control. “The revelation of her return caused me to have a falling out with the Horned King. A meeting with him ended badly. I survived by the skin of my teeth but he still had his link to me to guide Sheila to me if he wanted.”
“Vadderung appeared at my apartment and made his sales pitch. I was out of options, while death holds a great attraction to me I still like this world enough to not risk what would happen to the prophecy if I was taken out of the equation. So I took his deal and the tie to the horned one was broken. Unfortunately Sheila’s rape of me, both physical and mental, has left me with emotional damage that the dark power was shielding me from. I can barely keep myself coherent for a few hours a day but I will see this through before I can let myself die.”
Lila turned to look Janice in the face. “Seems like you could use some therapy too.”
“A doctor who treats himself is soon buried and a lawyer who represents himself is soon hanged.” Janice rubed her head. “There is no one I know who can even attempt to work with me. I’m the only one I know who even attempts to psychoanalyze the arcane and the drugs needed to treat post rape trauma would not work on me. I’ll have to muddle along.”
“So is my side of the deal kept.”
Leaning back into her chair Lila’s voice turned wry. “Yes, I suppose it is. I should warn you though, it seems Lady Autumn lost a similar bet with Lady Summer. She should be by tomorrow with intentions of setting up similar sessions with you.”
Janice winced at the news. “I’ll see what I can do. For now are you ready to talk about what you remember the first time you lost control of the power you contain.”