The line wasn't moving. Lila craned her head around the elbow of a
hulking rock giant directly in front of her and peered toward the
counter, some twenty bodies farther along the line. Why was it that
boarding the Trans-Dimensional Time Frame Travel Tunnel always took so
blasted long? She glanced at her wrist-pilot and saw that if she didn't
board her tunnel in the next twenty minutes, she would probably miss her
connection with Earth Proper, which meant she would have to make at least
two sub-connections on smaller tunnels and that was always dangerous. On
those smaller tunnels you never knew where you might get routed to before
you eventually (and hopefully) arrived at your destination.
Lila looked around the station, which at this time of day was packed with
an assortment of creatures from a variety of fantasy worlds.
Surprisingly, she noticed a counter on the far side of the terminal which
had only one customer waiting in line. Grabbing up her suitcase, she
headed across the crowded station, at one point stumbling over a family
of pixies heading home from an obvious holiday. All eight of the child
pixies wore tiny beanies with large mouse ears attached and for a
supposed fairy creature, their father certainly had a foul mouth.
"Sorry. So sorry, I didn't see you," Lila explained as she brushed the
pixie dust from her skirt and hurried on toward the counter. When she
arrived, the reason only one customer had been in this line became
obvious--she was in line for a Troll Tunnel.
"Blast," she muttered under her breath. Looking over to the line she had
just left, she saw that by losing her place to come over to this counter,
there would now be more than thirty creatures ahead of her if she tried
to go back. Resigned, she turned back to the counter just as the troll
attendant was stamping the paperwork of an extremely ugly goblin.
The little creature snatched up his passport (Lila could only assume it
was a male of the species, as both goblin sexes looked and smelled very
much alike) and as it turned, he gave her a lingering look that moved
slowly up and down her body (yes, it was definitely a male) that ended in
a disgusting leer. A narrow forked tongue slid out of his mouth to lick
a pair of thin lips, eyeing her as anything from a possible sexual
conquest to his next meal.
Lila didn't speak Goblin, so she gave him the universally recognized
single-digit salute to discourage his attempted advance. He sneered at
her, brushed back the three strands of long gray hair on his otherwise
bald pate and waddled away, hissing his displeasure.
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