They raced back along the tunnel in the direction Rozie had leapt, this other half of Rozen was a complete and utter lunatic, it was like she’d been caged up for years! She’d somehow managed to find her way into the workshop and was looking at objects and bottles, not caring how clumsily she was going.
“What do you think she does with all this stuff! Boring old witch! She should get out more, like poor Rozie! Always cooped up! It can really make a girl go mad!” she trilled as they entered.
“Sett! Where’s the Sorceress now?” asked Nera in a panic.
“Um…I think she left…outside somewhere.”
“How long will she be?”
He shook his pointy head.
Rozie was nosing through the objects, smashing things as she rummaged, the occasional “Oops” filling the air.
“Hey maybe if we’re lucky, she’ll find some way out!” said Sett, running across the tables after Rozie, who was still rummaging around.
She suddenly stopped.
She swooped and grabbed something on one of the lower shelves amidst some bottles. It appeared to be a sort of simple stone.
“What is it?” asked Sett, leaning closer.
“It’s SOOOOO pretty!” screeched Rozie.
“That does it! We’re not going to get anywhere with YOU in control! Now change back or whatever!”
Rozie puckered up her lips and gave him a fat kiss on the nose, then spat out ferret hairs.
“Yuk, you taste like a wet rug!”
She did a twirl and then ran off along the corridor.
“She’s like a child!” roared Sett, enraged by her behaviour.
“She is pretty hyperactive.”
“How are we going to get her to change back into Rozen! I know he’s just as stupid, but at least he’s not like her!”
They ran after her again, finding that she’d gone in search of Melki. They found the Cipri in one of the storerooms, ransacking the salted meats. On clapping eyes on Rozen she bared her fangs in an expression of savage joy and whinnied a greeting, despite her master being a different sex, she could still tell that deep down, it was him.
“Aww hahahah look horsey kisses!” cooed Rozie getting slobbered on by Melki.
“I can’t take much more of this” growled Sett.
“Calm down, I’m sure…Rozie will get bored soon” clucked Nera hopefully.
Rozie had clambered onto Melki and was now looking at them expectantly.
“Well get on then!” she said with a whoop. “Unless you want to stay when the old bat returns!”
They looked at each other quizzically and then quite suddenly, Rozie bent down and snatched Sett up like a rag, Nera flapping onto Melki’s rump.
“Silly boy! We can leave now!”
“What are you talking about you stupid woman?”
“Oh hooo look at him, insulting meeeee. You really are an idiot aren’t you?” she shoved the stone in his face. “THIS is our way out!”
“It’s a shitty stone!”
Rozie tutted and wagged a finger.
“Not just any stone, it’s a Key Stone; it can take us out of here! But you know I think this one’s old, the hag’s been using it too long; it’s about time she got herself a new one. See the cracks? I’d say this one has one more use left in it! That’s for US! Hold onto your wigs everyone! We’re outta here wooooooooot!”
Rozie rubbed the stone against the side of her face with a coo of delight and then squeezed it hard. As if she’d just squeezed a sponge full of water, an ethereal liquid dripped from the stone in long droplets that stretched out in colours of blue and white, the colours of the outside world. Nera found herself soaked with the growing liquid as it ballooned outwards, the shreds of the dark tunnels being enveloped by the growing colours of the Blue Forest, until quite suddenly, around them was a bubble of trees and snow that rippled before it popped, leaving them standing outside.
The stone in Rozie’s hand smashed to ash with a tinkle of sparkling dust.
“Wow…who knew a stone could get us back here.” Said Sett.
“I did!” cheered Rozie pulling Melki up into a dramatic rear that had them all hanging on for dear life. “Onward to adventure ehehehehe!”
The story and all related artwork is (C) to me