A/N: *peeks out from behind tree* Uh, hi, guys. *walks out slowly* So, uh, it's been awhile, huh? *kicks dirt* Well…yeaaaah. So, AP tests are almost over. And so I wrote something. Finally? *sheepish grin* Review?
Disclaimer: Not mine
They made good time getting to the city. They landed in the midst of a tepid, late twilight; the finish of a day whose heat had sent the City's denizens to toss in bed beneath sweaty sheets long before their usual bedtimes.
Elphaba brought them down in an alley and rummaged in her bag for cotton gloves and a gauzy black scarf.
"You don't keep those in your magic compartment?" Fiyero asked, gently mocking.
A glare. "No. I need them too often and too immediately."
Elphaba opened her magic compartment then, with a smirk on her face that quickly dissolved as she checked cautiously over her shoulder at the mouth of the alley, and shoved in her broom with a fast, neat motion. She closed the compartment again and strode forward, leading them from that alley to another, and through a maze of byways and side streets, none of which Fiyero had ever seen before.
"Uh, Elphie?" he asked finally. "Where are we going?
"Headquarters," said Elphaba without losing a step, and Fiyero almost rolled his eyes at the militant melodrama of the word before he realized what she meant.
"You mean the Re-"
She was quiet for the rest of the walk, focused on navigating her old labyrinthine commute, and he wisely followed suit, until she stopped short before an unassuming storefront, where he voiced his doubts.
"Elphie-Fae, didn't you say they're no better than the Wizard? They hurt you. Are you sure they'll help?"
"Oh, they'll help, mon soleil," she said. "Or they'll be the ones in need of assistance."
Fiyero could tell by the white-hot copper of her eyes that she was serious.
"Oh," he said again, not asking how she planned on taking down Lurline-knew-how-many armed men with the same or more training than she had.
Elphaba rapped a sharp, complex pattern on the door. "It's Fae," she said. "Let me the bloody hell in or I'll kick the damn door down."
"Lurlina, Fae," a man said, opening the door. "Anyone'd think you'd the Gale Force at your heels."
"Who's to say I don't?" she said, stepping in and motioning cryptically to or at Fiyero, who wasn't sure if she was informing the man of his former employment or gesturing at him to come in. He chose the latter and the man chose the former.
"Ah, yes, your pet turncoat," he said, as Fiyero stepped across the threshold, glowering. "Dragon's not going to like this, you know," he cautioned Elphaba.
"Frankly I don't give a flying fuck what Dragon likes or does not like," Elphaba spat.
The man gave a low whistle. "He won't like that either."
"Go and get him or I'll kick you somewhere you won't like."
The man, unsurprisingly, obeyed.
"It's a much different approach than Glinda's, but effective," Fiyero mused.
"Your way of controlling men."
"And what makes you think it's just men? You aren't so special as you like to think. I'm this way with everyone."
"No, you aren't."
"Fine, except you, but either you're a man or I've been hallucinating vividly for quite a while and should probably be concerned."
"Ha," said Fiyero drily as a black-clad man approached. "I-"
"Un moment, mon cher," Elphaba said in quick Old Gillikinese that he could barely follow, brief as it was. She turned to the new arrival.
"Fae," he said. "Glad to see you've rejoined us."
"Not quite," Elphaba said. "I've come to a realization."
"Oh?" he raised his eyebrows, a condescension Elphaba did not miss.
"Yes, oh. This organization is hardly better than the Wizard's. Do not," she held up a hand, "Do not interrupt me. This organization claims to support equality, but it's run by Gillikinese human males like yourself- no women, no Animals, no Munchkins or Vinkuns or Quadlings-"
"I'M NOT FINISHED. This is how it's going to work. You are going to start training everyone qualified the way you train your leaders. Everyone. And that operation you've planned, for Lurlinemas Eve? I want in."
"I do what I have to do. You know my value as a scare tactic, even if you don't appreciate my value as an operative. I can clear this city in under ten minutes simply by flying over and howling a few idle threats, and rest assured if I do there won't be a single Pigeon left here, let alone the Wizard or any legitimate target. What good are bombs and guns on an empty Palace- you were only going to bomb the Palace, right? Not the streets, surely?"
Dragon's face was ashen; Elphaba's was flushed, and her eyes had the hallucinatory luster of fever.
"Glinda," Fiyero whispered.
Elphaba whipped her head around to look at him, the ends of her lovely hair hitting Dragon in the face.
"Je le sais," she hissed. "Je l'ai souvenu. Cet un jeudi soir."
Thursday night, Fiyero thought, then remembered. Oh. "I never miss a Thursday night pampering session at my own house," Glinda had said.
"What was that?" Dragon asked, eyes flicking sharply between them.
"Communication. You might try it some time, it's really quite useful," Elphaba tossed off, stepping further into the room.
"Wait!" Dragon pulled her aside, grasping her wrist and getting shoved into a wall for his pains.
"I would not," Elphaba hissed in his face, "try that again."
"You can't start an internecine revolution in the middle of an external one," Dragon pleaded.
Elphaba stepped back and took her hand off his throat. She grinned ferally. "Fucking watch me," she said.