Books and more books, as far as the eye can see and farther still beyond that. The space – not a room, because a room has walls – is full of books, sitting on shelves or stacked on tables or propped open on stands. There is no floor either, everything seems to hang suspended in air, and not every piece of furniture is oriented in the same way either. The room has a haphazard feel despite nothing looking to be out of place.
Zarah appears out of the air laying prone atop a bookcase, glances around and scowls, “Back here again? What the fuck?”
“Oooh, that's naughty language!” Zarah turns over and looks down from her perch to see a small giggling girl in a bright rainbow-pattern dress floating in the aisle space between two bookcases. “Zarah, why do you use naughty language?”
“Who the fuck are you?” The girl only giggles louder at this, and Zarah takes a moment to think before realizing, “You're the voice from before!”
“Uh huh!” The child nods vigorously, “I could only give you a little attention before, but I'm here now and I'll be more here as soon as I can!”
Zarah scowls harder, “More here?”
“Uh huh! I'm Marta, the librarian here!” The child raises her arms to encompass the whole room and smiles. Zarah gives a slow, wary nod in response.
“Right, Marta the kid librarian. And where is here? How did I get here?”
“I brought you here!” The child walks off down the aisle and disappears around the bookcase's corner. Zarah scuttles after her, staying carefully atop the bookcase, but when she reaches the end the child is no longer below. “Although, you're not physically here miss Zarah.” Zarah looks up to another aisle above her, where a teenage girl in the same dress floats upside down but in the same orientation as the bookcases around her, “I moved your upper consciousness to this alpha-numeric coordinate location while your physical body is being moved spatially in a piecemeal fashion. As I told you before, your super-dense form makes the process a bit slower than for most people.”
“Yeah, I understood like half of that. You're still Marta, right?”
“Correct.” The teen wipes a speck of invisible dust from a book beside her, “More of my attention is focused on you now, thus explaining why my form is as you see. When you first arrived I could only give you the slightest attention, therefore I was only audible and not visible.”
Zarah flares at Marta, “That's right, you're the voice that called me large before!” She stands with an indignant pride and lifts her shirt to bare her belly at Marta, “Does it look like I've got any fat to you?! I've got a lean, mean, killer bod, so take that back you little shit!”
Marta's eyebrows raise in haughty despair, “Are you always such an uncouth woman? Have some respect for yourself, show a little class at least.”
Zarah laughs and points a finger at Marta, “I'm rude, crude and socially unacceptable bitch! No one tells me how to behave without a fight!”
Marta covers her mouth with one hand as she snidely remarks, “Breeding shows I suppose.” Zarah's eyes widen and her easy smile becomes a mad grin; without a thought she pulls back her hand as if to throw a knife at Marta. To her own surprise a blue silverware knife appears in her hand; she throws it without thinking at Marta. The knife, solid as a ghost with a slight glow, shatters ineffectively upon hitting Marta's forehead dead center and disappears, but Marta squeaks in terror anyway and dives behind a bookcase.
Zarah stares down at her own hand in awe, “Since when could I do that?” She opens and closes her hand several times, but to no effect.
“Your talents are manifesting along with your emotional maturity ma'am.” Zarah spins to find a young woman standing atop the other end of the same bookcase as her, hands clasped in front off her, wearing a rainbow dress and slender-framed glasses. “In this non-corporeal form you may find them easier to use for the first time, and soon you will be similarly able back on the physical plane.”
“Huh … Marta again?” The young woman nods and Zarah grins, “Good, now keep being target practice while I work on this.” She flexes her hand several times, trying to make the knife appear, but stops when Marta bows at almost a perfect right angle for a sincere apology.
“Please forgive my previous behavior ma'am. I fully understand that it was atrocious, please believe that I am very, very sorry for it.” Marta remains bent at the waist, her hands still clasped and her long auburn hair hanging down, until Zarah begins to look a little uncomfortable at this treatment. “Am I forgiven ma'am?”
“Yeah, yeah, just stop groveling already. Damn, I don't even care, I only wanted you to take back the comment about me being big.”
Marta stands straight with a grateful look, “Not big or fat ma'am, super-dense. Large was merely in reference to the size of the task of moving you.”
Zarah looks confused, “Moving me?” Her eyes narrow in something between fear and anger, “Are you rifting me?”
“No ma'am, I do not have the ability to open spacial rifts on the physical plane. I am simply overseeing your teleportation. As for the cause, you did this to yourself.” Before Zarah can respond, Marta blinks several times and speaks again in a formal tone, “Physical transfer complete, sending consciousness in three, two, one.” Zarah disappears from the spot with a frightened look on her face, and Marta smiles and waves at where she was standing, “Safe travels ma'am!” The young woman turns away, and as she does morphs in to the teen who then remarks, “And good riddance fatso. Why was she traveling with such dense magic inside her?” The teen snaps her fingers and a book appears in her hands; as she opens it to the middle she morphs again to become the kid, who reads the first page with a look of growing wide-eyed wonder. Without any intermediate stages a dour middle-aged woman is standing on the spot, frowning down at the book in her hands. She lifts her horn-rim glasses and rubs at her eyes with a tired sigh, “By truth, is it that time already? They're going to make me busy, busy, busy.”
Meanwhile, Zarah has appeared back in the inn room standing in front of Jorg, her arms circled around him. He was pacing in a tight circle before and so knocks Zarah over backwards then falls atop her himself, leaving them in an awkward position on the floor as the red cape dashes up and wraps itself securely around Zarah's neck as if scared she might leave it again. Jorg is quick to speak.
“Babe!” Zarah looks up at him, her eyes again somewhat unfocused, but something akin to true terror now spreading across her face. “Babe, where did you go? Wait, is something wrong?” She says nothing, but clings to him harder and buries her face in his shoulder as dry heaving gasps shake her. Jorg becomes panicked, “Zarah?! You're worrying me babe, what's wrong?”
And in the smashed up inn room, Rusty slips in through the window with a hangdog expression. Sah is gathering up the various articles of clothing and armor scattered about the room with the bed sheet wrapped around her like a toga, and barely looks away from setting them out neatly on the foot of the bare bed when he comes in. It takes a moment for Rusty to gather his courage and speak, but he does so after a deep breath.
“My one and only love, I have failed you. The thief escaped through magic, but also due in part to my hesitance; I swear to you the groundling would lay dead before you if I had thought to take her seriously. As matters be,” he reaches in to his cloak's inner pocket, pulls out the rough leather pieces and offers them to Sah, “please have the magical footwear I took from the thief as my apology. And of course I will requisition new armor for you, as soon - .”
“As the Green Chief's woman I would expect to wear better armor, so that thief can have my old set.” Sah walks over to Rusty and puts a finger against his lips as they become a happy smile, “And I will forgive this incident if you allow me to choose the armor's enchantments freely. But do not think me a woman who can be bought with accessories.”
Rusty pushes her hand away, “But my dearest love, these be no simple trinkets. They allowed the thief to walk upon any wall as if it be level ground, a feat which I can mimic … thus do I wish for them to be yours!”
She hesitates, then reaches out for the leather pieces, “You wish me to have them so that I might protect you better?” He nods, and so she takes them. “Thank you, my … ,” she hesitates again, then awkwardly adds, “my sweet.”
Rusty grabs hold of her and hugs her close to him, his eyes shining, “My bright star, I knew you would make me happy! And I will have your revenge on that thief as well, I will see every pathetic groundling worm in this city sacrificed. You see my love, I had an idea while searching for that thief! One I will propose to the Black Emperor immediately, and with his permission set in motion.” He kisses her with a fierce passion and then backs away, “I will send Ozim to assist you with clothes, so please wait patiently my lady. I cannot wait until we be together again!” He continues backing up and makes a dark cackling sound; before her eyes he transforms to become a large green-feathered bird standing on the window sill. With one last shrill cackle he flaps out and away, climbing higher and higher into the sky as the occasional green feather floats down behind him.
Sah sighs and shakes her head, “Don't forget you are still naked sir.”