Part XI – Revelation
The phone inside the top floor office of the precinct rang and Major Rufap hurriedly picked it up.
“Go for Rufap,” said the major.
“You left a message for me to contact you,” said the voice on the other end. It was the voice that the two police officers had been waiting to hear from ever since they left their meeting with the sun elf princess. The Butterfly Samurai had finally contacted them.
In the desert, Momotaru sat on a log with his shirt off and poked at the fire in front of him with a stick.
“How much longer are we gonna have to be here?” asked Arif Zahur who lay on her back with limbs sprawled outward.
“And where exactly would you like us to go?” asked Momotaru. “It’s not like we can go back to Aver any time soon thanks to you.”
“Well anywhere but here,” said Zahur. “We’ve been here for forever.” She dragged out the last word to amplify the agony she felt by remaining in the remote location.
The old crone came limping out of her hut. She carried a thick, leather-bound book that she sat on the log beside Momotaru as she took a seat next to him.
“You’ve been slacking in your reading of the sacred text these past few days,” said the old crone.
“I needed to take a break,” said Momotaru. “I’ll start reading again soon.”
“You will read now,” said the old crone.
“Why should I?” asked Momotaru. “There’s always tomorrow.”
“Not for you,” said the old crone.
Both Momotaru and Zahur looked at one another with eyes wide in shock. Turning sharply towards the old crone, Momotaru fixed his icy stare upon her.
“What exactly is that supposed to mean?” asked Momotaru with furrowed eyebrows.
“It doesn’t matter,” said the old crone while wearing a large, toothless grin. “What does matter is the company that you’re expecting.”
Arif Zahur looked to Momotaru with a raised eyebrow.
“It’s your crazy ex-girlfriend that we ran into earlier,” said Zahur. “Isn’t it? Who is she and why is she so crazy?”
As if in response, a hover shuttle appeared in the distance, hovering several meters in the air as it approached. Momotaru and his companion hurriedly tried to gather up what little stuff that belonged to them. It was only a matter of seconds before the hovercraft was touching down next to the shack of the old hag.
Momotaru glowered as he stood and glared menacingly at his old adversary, the Butterfly Samurai.
“Good,” said Iris Longwing as she jumped out of the convertible hovercraft. “You two are packed up and ready to go. I have to take you two back to town. There’s some very important people wanting to have a word with you, Momo.”
“I’m not going anywhere with you, Iris,” said Momotaru. “Besides, I know if the police haven’t hired you to find me yet then they’ve probably hired someone else who’ll be looking for both of us. We need to stay ahead of them at all costs. Besides, Arif is one small guy, I don’t think he’ll last too long in prison.”
Iris burst out laughing at the comments made by her longtime friend. “Wait,” said Iris as she bent forward, holding her stomach and slapping her upper thigh while laughter burst forth from her lips. “I can’t believe that you’ve actually developed a sense of humor, Momo. That’s the funniest thing I’ve heard in a while.”
“Well,” said Momotaru hesitantly. “I don’t think it was that funny… I mean, I think Arif can kind of hold his own if we ever get caught. Plus he’ll have me to look out for him.”
Arif Zahur with eyes wide and pleading quickly looked to Iris as they seemed to speak using only their eyes. The smile on Iris face was quickly replaced be a stern frown.
“Wait,” said Iris shaking her head. “You’re serious aren’t you… you have no idea, do you?”
“No!” shouted Zahur springing forward to stand in front of Iris. She shook her head furiously as she stared into the color shifting Acro Eyes of the Butterfly Samurai. “Don’t say anything please.”
“What in the hell is going on?” asked Momotaru forcefully shoving the two of them apart. He looked down with a confused expression on his face and glared at his new traveling partner as a hint of a tear formed in Zahur’s eyes.
Grabbing ahold of Momotaru’s rippling, chocolate brown arm, Iris seductively drew herself closer to Momotaru. Lightly touching his forearm, she traced a finger up to his neck as she blew seductively into his ear.
“This one’s got a big secret,” said Iris with a slight giggle.
“A secret,” said Momotaru confused as he looked back and forth between Iris and Zahur. “What exactly is she talking about Arif?”
“N-nothing,” stuttered Zahur. “L-let’s get out of here.”
“No way,” said Momotaru blocking Zahur’s path. “Before I go anywhere with anyone else, you’re gonna tell me exactly what’s going on… or else.” He rested a hand on the hilt of the blade hanging at his waist.
“Ugh!” interrupted the old crone who still sat in front of the fire. “It’s your own fault Momo, you’ve let your senses become dulled. You should have been able to sense that your new traveling companion is female.”
“What!” shouted Momotaru.
The Butterfly Samurai threw her head back and laughed all the more louder.
Arif Zahur turned her head away, abashed and unable to meet the confused expression on Momotaru’s face.