In the end, I decided I needed a witch. And not Clara. An experienced witch. I sought out Bruce.
Not that I’d been ignoring him. I’d been careful to make sure that every time I showed up it wasn’t with some kind of crisis. For an older guy, he was a lot of fun to hang out with. But right now, I did need his help.
He picked up on it as soon as I entered the store. “Back room?”
I nodded, moving past the displays of crystals and incense. “Is it that obvious?”
“You’re worried about something.”
“And I need to contact a goddess. A specific one. I’m not sure the best way to get her attention.”
“Is it somebody safe for mortals to deal with?”
I considered. “I’m not sure. Possibly not.”
He looked at me, seriously. “Okay. What’s going on?”
“Loki stole a dwarven artifact that drains powers from gods. Tyz’vel stole it from him. Anansi stole it from him.”
“And Anansi has it now?”
“Right. And we’re worried he’s going to go after Brother Death and unleash a plague of zombies or something.”
“That would be rather bad. We don’t need the zombie apocalypse.” He let out a breath. “I know who’s attention you want.”
“Right. I think I can talk to her safely.”
“I think you can too. But…”
“But Loki’s not around to ask, and I need to know what she likes.” Which was probably not cayenne brownies. Ice cream, maybe?
Bruce considered that. “Generally, sane people don’t invoke her, but I do know somebody who has a good relationship with her. And she would say…” He furrowed his brow. “Hold on. I’m just going to call her.”
He tugged out his cell phone. I slipped back out into the store and looked at some books, then at the jewelry. There was a really pretty Thor’s hammer with a red garnet in the handle. But I didn’t get on that well with Thor. Still, I made a mental note of it, and looked at some of the other divine symbols.
“Alright!” Bruce called.
I stepped in.
“I didn’t tell her who you are, so her response was a little cautious, but she likes ice wine, which I could probably find for you. And apparently has a weakness for lavender flavored ice cream.”
That was hard to find. “The wine would probably be easier…but I hate to ask you to break the law for me again.”
It was starting to be a pattern. “I keep asking you for booze.”
“I’ll find some. Just remember that you owe me.”
I grinned. “Let me know who or what you need beating up.” Which was, well, pretty much how I paid my debts lately.
I looked back at the jewelry, but no…nothing there was right for what I suddenly wanted.
A gift for Kanesha. But she should, I knew, wear no symbol except my own.
I didn’t yet have one.