Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Harold doesn’t open the shop on Wednesdays. There’s no market on and hump day has so few shoppers that there’s no passing trade to speak of. He does go in if there’s a rush job on – if someone needs a copy of an ancient manuscript in a hurry (“so real you’ll think it’s the original”) of if we have a trader coming in.
We get some interesting people bringing us books. In just three years Harold has become world renowned, in some circles, for his specialty antiquarian books. Ancient texts of magic and the occult flow through his hands like bread pudding and custard. If it exists, he assures his customers, he can get a hold of it and provide them with either a copy or a facsimile. The latter is often exorbitantly expensive as the ease of writing in scarab blood with a dodo-feather quill on paper made from pulped bulrushes can be exponentially difficult.
Leiferjahn is one such trader. An angel once, his mantle has been sooted and dusted for so long he’s almost a feathered demon. He travels the seven planes looking for the Cloak of Michael, the cowl reputedly given to Eve by the angel as she fled from the Garden of Eden. With it he hopes to redeem himself and return to Heaven. In the mean time he drops off any useful artifacts he finds on his travels in exchange for information or, failing that, a bed, a bath and a houseful of smiley faces.
Two out of three isn’t bad.