“YOU CAN PACK YOUR SHIT and return to whatever hole you crawled out of, Harry! It will be a cold day in hell before I ever again involve myself in Wonderland politics.”
Harrison was a shifter. Most residents of Wonderland could take on one shape or another. And for Harrison, well, his just happened to be a small white rabbit. It certainly wasn’t as impressive as Cedric’s Cheshire cat. Cedric could make different parts of his body disappear until he was only a floating pair of eyeballs or a sinister smile.
But at least he wasn’t Darius who could only shift into a dodo bird—all body and no wings, tragic really.
However, what Harry secretly wanted to be more than anything was to be like Jay. Everyone wanted to be like Jay. He was a kick-ass Jabberwocky that owned his own freaking island and had chicks crawling all over him.
Chicks, meaning women, not to be confused with the poultry variety of chick.
Harry shook his head, “Al, you have to! The White King has declared war and the White Queen has taken to her rooms.”
Alice raised a carefully crafted brow, “Explain to me why that is a bad thing? Perhaps they will kill everyone, just think of how great that would be?”
Harry’s lips compressed into a thin line, “You know you don’t mean that.”
“I really do,” Alice moved around her long-time friend Harry to pick up a few more plates that needed to be delivered at her small café, Treacle Tarts. “Look, I would love to help you.”
“Why do I hear a giant butt coming?”
There was a snort of laughter from the kitchen followed by, “Maybe because you are speaking with my sister.”
“Bite my ass, Lorina,” Alice didn’t even skip a beat, she dropped the lunches off, flicked her younger sister off and went to grab the coffee to refill some cups that she noticed were low.
Alice had opened Treacle Tarts as a way of supporting Lorina and herself. They were supposed to share the workload, but recently Lory had been slipping off frequently. And when she was there her work was only half-assed.
Every time Alice had tried to confront Lory, it ended up in a big screaming match between the sisters. They were as opposite in looks as they were in temperament. While Alice had dark hair, raven wing brows and a cupid’s bow for a mouth. Lory was fair, with long blonde hair, peach stained cheeks, and a button nose.
One would almost think that they weren’t related. That is until you saw the sisters around one another. They were eerily similar in many of their mannerisms, and their voices were almost identical.
“It would be a shame only to let me have a bite. With an ass that size we could feed half of Wonderland.”
Lory came out of the kitchen with a hand on her slender hips.
Alice rolled her eyes, where Lory was tall and willowy, Alice was small and rounded. Her hourglass shape had caused no end of embarrassment for her. The men loved it, and the women hated her looking so damn good.
Alice knew that Lory meant no harm. The sisters had been trading insults from the moment they could talk.
“At least people want my ass.” Alice turned to see Harry staring right at her posterior. She sighed before snapping in his face. “Was there anything else you needed?”
His face flushed as his eyes snapped back to her brown ones. He was happy to note that Alice wasn’t angry. Harry knew that when Alice lost her temper, it was best to take cover and wait the storm out.
“Why don’t you go ask Jay?” Lory interjected, having no shame in eavesdropping on the conversation between Harry and her sister.
“This is official business, Lory,” Harry tried to put the blonde beauty in her place. “I am here as an emissary to the White Court.”
Lory laughed, “Is that who you are serving now? Interesting that you made the switch. Didn’t you used to be a faithful servant of the Queen of Hearts?”
Harry’s face turned an ugly shade of puce, “That was a long time ago.”
Lory shrugged an elegant shoulder, “Not so very long. I remember Alice having to go out and rescue Jay after you mistakenly had him imprisoned.”
Her shit eating grin resembled that of the Cheshire Cat.
Harry narrowed his eyes, but it was Alice who spoke.
“Stop teasing him, Lory. It was ages ago. We were little more than children then. If Jay has forgiven him and let it go, we should too.”
Lory just huffed and made her way back into the kitchen.
“I don’t know why she doesn’t like me,” Harry muttered.
“Because you are a pretentious snob,” Alice said with a smile, “And before you go getting offended by that. Remember, you are here asking me a favor.”
Harry swallowed whatever retort had sprung to his lips. He hated when others were right. It was damned irritating.
“Look, Harry,” Alice said kindly, “Lory might have been trying to yank your chain. But the idea is a sound one. Why don’t you ask Jay to help you? He is a Jabberwocky for hell’s sake. You can’t get a better ally to have than a massive dragon that breathes fire.”
Harry muttered something under his breath, but Alice couldn’t hear him. She did note that he looked like he had been asked to suck on a dirty kitchen sponge.
“I did ask Jay,” he finally relented, the words coming out like little knives.
“And?” Alice grabbed a rag and began to wipe down the pristine counter. Their café wasn’t much, but she was proud of it and wanted it to show.
“He won’t do it without you!” Harry spit out.
Alice’s hand froze, the rag coming to a halt as she eyed the little red-haired man that sat twitching in front of her.
Images of Jay flashed into her mind. His sculpted abs that tapered into a trim waist and firm buttocks. The Keltic tattoo that took up most of his left arm and scrawled onto his chest. Those dark eyes that varied between brown and black, and never missed a damn thing. His shaggy black hair that hung boyishly over his forehead.
It had been almost ten years since she had seen him. The last time she set eyes on the man she was covered in blood after rescuing him from the evil Red Queen.
Alice had thought he would come and thank her, but he never had. For weeks and months, she glanced up, anticipation written on her face, hoping that it was the dark-eyed devil walking through her door.
But he hadn’t come.
Weeks turned into months, and then years, and the sisters had found their place in Wonderland.
Harry’s eyes bulged, “What do you mean, no?”
“Hell no,” Alice said firmly, ire starting to lick her veins. “How dare that bastard make demands of me? I saved his ass, and this is how he thinks to repay me, by throwing me to the wolves?”
“He wanted to work together, Alice,” Harry tried to soothe her, “Like a partnership.”
Her dark eyes blazed, “He can shove his partnership up his ass, and if you come around here again asking favors of that man, you will find something shoved up yours as well.”
Harry squeaked and raced out of the café, not even waiting to hear the little bells tinkle as the door opened which everyone knew was his favorite.
He rubbed his fluffy red hair worriedly. Jay wouldn’t be happy to hear that Alice refused him. He wasn’t the same kid they once knew.
He topped six foot five and was a solid wall of muscle, that was in his human form. Harry shuddered to think about when Jay took the Jabberwocky form.
Maybe, he could trick them into a meeting. That way Alice couldn’t blame him, and Jay would get what he wanted?
Smiling, Harry scampered off to work on his new plan, unaware that Lory had been watching him the entire time from the back door with a knowing look on her face.