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Eldritch Thoughts

May Day!

"Lee, I've something I got to tell you."

"What is it, Ava?"

"Ever since we first met, I knew there was something special about you."

Drake watched the scene unfold, head tilted to one side and supported by a fist. His eyes were hooded. "Hina, she hated his guts."

"Shh!" the smallish Hawaiian girl exclaimed. "You're ruining it." The silver fish on her hair band glinted as though catching the light.

The full bodied woman standing before them reached up to her own hair band and pulled it loose, letting her long red hair stream around her shoulders and down her back. Her voice carried the slow drawl of somebody who had been born and raised in the South. "Ever since we met, I've known. But I fought it, Lee. I fought hard."

"I know," Lee said.

"I'll be he knows," Drake muttered. "How many times has she shot him?" He grunted softly as Hina elbowed him in the side.

"But I can't fight anymore. It's too strong. These... These..."

"Yes?" Lee asked, lightly grasping her shoulders.

"These feelings, Lee. I..."


"I love you, Leonard Sutcliffe!" she cried, flinging herself into Lee's arms.

"And I love you, Ava Tapscott," he replied softly, crushing her in his embrace.

They stood in each other's arms for a while before Ava spoke. "Kiss me," she breathed, her voice shaking and barely even a whisper. Lee obliged, raising her face to his and planting his lips firmly on hers. The kiss continued longer than the preceding hug before Ava began to claw at Lee's shirt. Things progressed rapidly from there, clothes flying from them at a frenzied pace that seemed still too slow for either of their tastes. Soon, their blurred, naked bodies stood in each other's embrace.

"Oh come on!" a suddenly animated Drake cried, throwing his arms up in the air. "You get to the good part and you go and fuzz them out. What's up with that?"

Hina sniffed, raising her chin slightly and letting the two illusory lovers wink out of existence. "Unlike some of us, I have no desire to have nude images of my friends burned into my brain." She turned her face away from Drake slightly to avoid the flat, disbelieving stare he leveled at her. "Anyway, that's exactly the way it happened. I'm sure of it."

Drake snorted. "You're just upset because you can't know exactly what's going on."

"Neither can you, Drake Murdock," she said, neither lowering her nose nor turning to face Drake.

"So you mean I haven't been listening in this entire time?"

Her head whipped around to gape at Drake. He grinned smugly at her, then tapped a finger to his temple. Her mouth opened wider. "You wouldn't," she breathed.

"Oh no?"

Hina felt Drake enter her mind, bringing her into a telepathic connection. Lee and Ava were there too, but they were obviously unaware that they were being watched. Hina's hand flew to her mouth as she felt her cheeks begin to burn. "Ava would so not even stop at killing you."

"I'd agree if I thought she was ever going to find out." One of Hina's eyebrows shot up and a tiny smirk spread across her face. Drake obviously recognized that look, as the smug smile slid from his face to be replaced by outright panic. But before he could do anything, he heard his own voice over the telepathic link shouting "Woo! Looking hot!" His jaw dropped. "Hina!" he cried in terror, and was quickly echoed by a muted, angry cry from elsewhere in the house of "Drake!"

"Ooh, look at the time!" Hina said in mock surprise, a phantom watch springing into existence on her wrist. "I've got to be going. Places to be, massacres to avoid and all that." She sprang up from the couch and, taking a single step, winked out of sight, wrapping herself in a light-bending bubble that rendered her invisible from outside.

Drake scrambled to his feet and looked wildly around the room, searching for someplace to hide. "Stay calm, Drake," he said, trying to reassure himself. "You've got some time. She has to put some clothes on first."

"Wanna bet?" a thickly accented voice growled behind him. Drake leaped into the air, spinning to face whoever had spoken. It was Ava, bearing down on him without wearing a stitch of clothing. She had pulled the dangling, silver eagle from her ear, and it was still lengthening into the too-familiar form of her long bow as she reached out and nocked it with an arrow of light pulled directly from the air. Drake dove to the floor, barely avoiding the arrow that slammed into the wall above him with a loud thunk. He scurried on his hands and knees in the next room, trying to escape her as she stalked purposefully after him, already drawing another glowing arrow out of nothing.

Hina stood there, watching the scene unfold and trying valiantly to keep her giggles inside. Lee soon entered the room. He was much calmer than Ava had been, wearing a small smile and a loose robe belted low around his waist. He stared at the door to the dining room, listening to the unintelligible shouts sounding through the doorway. "You're a bad influence on him, you know that?" he said, almost to himself.

Hina's temper flared instantly. "Oh no!" she cried, stepping out of her bubble and raising an accusing finger at Lee. "You're not going to blame this one on me."

Lee nodded, not even looking at her. "I figured you'd be here." Hina's mouth snapped shut. He had tricked her. Her! The master trickster herself! "And standing invisible in an empty room doesn't do a lot to reassure me that you had nothing to do with this." He turned to face her, the quiet smile never leaving his face.

"Well I didn't," she said, folding her arms and raising her chin. "I'm completely innocent this time."

"Just like every time," he agreed.

"No!" she exclaimed, widening her eyes as though hurt and surprised. "I'm serious this time!"

Lee chuckled. "You're always serious."

Their banter was interrupted by a loud "Ow!" from the other room, followed by a roar that quickly shifted from Drake's rich tenor to the deeper baritone of Scorpion. Lee sighed and shook his head. "We should probably stop them."

"Yeah," Hina said. "We really probably can't afford to pay to repair another house." Sighing again, Lee plodded towards the dining room door, obviously not looking forward to having to break up a fight between Ava and Drake. Hina watched him vanish through the door then turned to the center of the room. The naked illusion of Ava snapped into existence, this time without any trace of blurring. Hina smiled broadly, pleased with her handiwork. The smile quickly faded, and a blurry Lee appeared beside Ava. It was too bad that Lee had taken the time to get dressed. Otherwise she might have been able to... She froze suddenly, her head whipping around to face the dining room door. Lee was only wearing a loose robe. It shouldn't be too hard too... Giggling wildly, she flung her arms out to her sides and skipped through the open door.

The door to outside opened, admitting Rand into the empty living room. "Hey guys, I'm..." His greeting was cut off by a horrified scream from the dining room. He froze in mid-stride, his mouth still open. Upon hearing a crash that sounded like a table being overturned, he pivoted in place and headed back for the door, continuing with, "going back out!" He rolled his eyes as he heard Lee's voice cry, "Hina! Give that back!" followed by Hina's distinctive giggles. At least they were all getting along again. He let the door slam behind him.