Disclaimer: I don't own Wicked. I hope you enjoy this story.

"Well hello there, Fae! What took you so long? It's about damn time you got here!"

"Yeah well, you know, the usual: I went shopping, got my nails done, went to this little place on 2nd street where they do the best cucumber masks… I don't know, but I guess I just lost track of time…It's so important to take care of oneself though! Don't you agree?" Elphaba grinned, not in the least intimidated by the burly man opening the door and ushering her in.

"Hardy, har, har. You can save your sarcasm, woman. I'm assuming that half-dead kitty cat you're holding is the real reason you're late! Let's hope Ian doesn't find out: you know how the boss hates tardiness! And for a lost cause at that!"

"Lost cause? Ha! She's a fighter! She'll pull through it. I'm sure. …Arg, don't you dare give me that look, Anthony! I'm not "going soft" I'm just as focused on the mission as the rest of you and you know it! Just because –"

"Fae!" A voice boomed, interrupting her mid- outburst.

"Fae! Stop that bickering this instant and come here! …You see that boy over there? Derek and Mellark saw him loitering outside our quarters at 52nd street and brought him in for questioning. Says he wants to join the team! Go see, if he's up for the job!"

With that their boss, a giant Silverback Gorilla named Ian, was gone.

"I da know, Fae, he seems a bit lanky to me…" Anthony had come up behind her and was now eyeballing the blindfolded boy in the corner. Elphaba just raised an eyebrow, her gaze wandering down his body and stopping pointedly at his wooden leg.

"uh...then again: don't judge a book by its cover, eh? …I say: Give the boy a chance!"

"Glad you still got some enthusiasm in you, old boy, but we'll see about that, won't we? In the meantime, be a dear, and take care of her for me!" Trusting the cat into his arms Elphaba made her way across the room.