WARNING: this story is EXTREMELY WEIRD! ... can you say RANDOM? I have a weird sense of humor...
Disclaimer: I don't own Tortall. I don't own Daine and Numair. I DO own the... Um... the giant mice people... right.
Numair cursed violently from the other room. Daine, who was talking to a bird, looked up, and grinned.
I'll talk to you later, Wing brother, she said
Yes, she chuckled, and trotted over to Numair's lab. She walked in to find his face blackened, and glaring at a small star-shaped plate in front of him. "Numair?" she asked, half laughing. He looked ridiculous.
"This - Mithros - cursed - spell - isn't - working," he seethed. She couldn't help it; she burst out laughing. He glared, but she just kept giggling, and, unable to stop, folded her arms around his neck to pacify him. He muttered, glared, then sighed and laid his head on her shoulder. "I hate you," he teased.
"Hate is such a strong word," she said, still grinning.
Unfortunately, the spell was left unattended. There was a loud BANG and the room filled with green mist. When it cleared, Daine and Numair were nowhere to be found.
Or, rather, the lab was nowhere to be found.
"Where are we?" Daine asked, arms still around his neck.
"Not a clue," he said, peering over her head.
Daine didn't see his face go white. She did, however, feel him go ridged, and heard his confused babbling of, "What...? Gods, damned... what on Earth? MITHROS MYNOSS AND SHAKITH!" He disentangled himself from her, and tugged on her arm.
"Numair, what...?" he spun her around, and she gasped.
It looked like a rat. Only it wasn't. Its face was long, but its ears were droopy, like a dog's, it had no tail, it walked on its hind legs and its eyes were human-like.
It was also huge.
Frantic, Daine called out to the creature, but got no answer. She called again and again, but heard only an odd, static like sound.
Numair knew immediately that his Gift would not even break the creature's skin.
Terrified, Daine and Numair made a run for it.
Lynoss, the owner of a pet store, walked through the forest, in search of cacoss birds to catch and sell at his shop. He hummed as he walked, occasionally pricking his ears forward to catch the sound of the tell-tale ca-CAW of the common bird.
He was very surprised when he saw the two humans sprinting away from him.
He smiled softly, and started to follow them. Lynoss had forgotten how cute humans were... they were so small, and fragile, and made excellent pets, once trained. They were intelligent creatures, and what struck people was that they walked on their hind legs, unlike any other species, except for their own.
Smiling, he captured the creatures in his jar and gazed at them. They shivered and clutched at each other, and he smiled. He always loved to watch the transformation of a shy and scared animal to a loving, trusting creature of captivity.
Cutting his walk short, he strode back into town.
Numair had never been so afraid in his life.
Neither had Daine.
They were in a glass container, carried by a giant rat-thing, and both thought that they were going to their doom.
Excuse me, Daine asked again, afraid and knowing it wasn't going to work. EXCUSE ME!
Numair tried to create a shattering spell. There was a PING sound, and his black Gift vanished. Daine gulped, and curled back into his arms, shivering... or was he the one trembling? They realized at the same time that both of them were shaking beyond control.
"I'm sorry, Magelet," Numair murmured.
"Not your fault, Numair," Daine whispered.
They were silent.
Lynoss walked through the heart of the town, his glass container in his arms. The town was small enough so that he knew most people by name, but large enough so he didn't know everyone, and he was new here. Business was good.
He strode straight into his shop, and found a glass container for the humans. He carefully slipped a divider between the sides - he knew to separate males from females - and gently, quietly so not to scare them, opened the jar.
The two were clinging to each other, and he thought it a pity to separate them. Humans mated for life, he remembered, and it would be cruel to force them apart. So he took the divider away, and gently lifted both humans from the jar.
They squeaked and twisted, but never let go of each other. Smiling gently, he placed them in the display cage. "Hush, hush, little ones," he murmured, "I won't harm you. You're a lot safer here than you are in the wild."
Naturally, Daine and Numair couldn't understand a word coming from Lynoss' mouth, because, of course, humans and rats have different shaped mouths, thus making their language different.
They did realize, of course, that they were not being gnawed on, or even hurt. Both glanced around, and realized that they were standing on wood chips.
"This is the same stuff Thom kept for his pet mouse..." Daine murmured.
"I shall never look at pet mice the same way again," Numair declared, "Daine, I believe the roles have been reversed... we are the pets!"
Lynoss gave the humans three days to adjust. They hardly left each other's arms, which he found sweet, but they didn't eat much food. He worried, but supposed that they were shocked too much, which he understood. Once they realized that he wouldn't hurt them, they would probably eat.
On the fourth day, he approached them, making sure to talk to them gently first. He slowly lifted the top of the container, and watched with some amusement as the female shot into the male's arms, and the male simultaneously grabbed the female to him, the force of their opposite movements making them slam into each other with an audible, even to Lynoss, smack sound.
As gently as he could, he lifted them and held them in the palm of his hand. They shivered, and looked at him out of wide blue-gray and black eyes.
It had picked them up.
It had picked them up.
The second it did, though, both had tried to communicate with it, and failed miserably. It was gentle, at least.
"'Least we know it won't kill us..." Daine murmured flatly to Numair, her voice muffled by his shirt, because he was holding her so tightly.
"Do we?" he asked, "that's speculation."
She looked up into his eyes. "I don't think it will," she mumbled.
"I suppose," Numair said uncertainly, "It wouldn't have spoken to us, before it... lifted us..." Numair didn't sound thrilled. He lifted his head from Daine's and looked into the creature's strangely human eyes. It moved its head to the left, and lifted its other hand and made a motion as if to pet him. He laid his head back on Daine's.
"We are definitely hamsters."
Well, it was a start, thought Lynoss. The male hadn't flinched away, but he could still sense fear in both of the humans. He would work on it, he decided.
Every day after that, he brought the humans out to pet them. They relaxed, after about three weeks, enough to let go of each other, but each didn't stray too far from the other. The male peered over Lynoss' thumb while the female, still close enough to touch her mate, looked into his eyes. With his left hand, he stroked the soft fur on the top of her head. She shook him off, and crept back in the male's arms.
Lynoss put them away for the day, amused when, after putting a wheel in for them, the male completely missed the point and laid down in it. The female looked amused as well.
"It's a wheel, Numair," Daine giggled. "You don't sleep in it, you run in it!"
"I'm not sinking that low," he commented with a small smirk. He opened one eye, grinned wider, and pulled her in next to him. "It also works as a hammock," he said, stuck one foot out and ended up rocking them both to sleep, curled in each other's arms.
Yay! I revised it!
I had a hamster that did that – slept in the wheel rather than run in it. She was so funny… yeah.