Sorry for missing a week~ Dermatologist visit!
The pair left her at the doorway of Supernatural and the Occult, both of them smiling, both of them saying they were going to talk to Miss Haas. Two had slipped a packet of cookies into Veronika’s pocket, too, which pressed against her leg in a weird, crinkly way, like a token of some sort of kinship. She spent a moment looking at the door – it was big, a couple feet taller than she was and proportionally wider, a heavy-looking wooden door – not oak, maybe something like – cherry, she realized, she’d seen that somewhere, probably in the Fillion. It was carved all about with figures, what looked like demons and angels, pegasi and unicorns and what she thought were probably kelpies.
The top half had a window – carved so it looked like it was held up by the unicorn and the kelpie, riding on a pegasus’ back – which itself was a complicated stained glass ritual circle.
Veronika took another moment to recall the last time she’d seen those letters. She read them twice and giggled, a little, to herself.
“Mellon,” she whispered.
The door swung open inwards with a little fanfare sound. Trying not to grin, Veronika walked through.
Her expression, because she was delighted but trying not to show it too much, was something like an intrigued smile as she stepped in to Supernatural & Occult.
She was rather glad it hadn’t been a grin, because she was faced with a room which was nearly too cluttered to move in, a room which smelled of seventeen pleasant things at once, which made it smell rather less pleasant than it might have, and a room where there was a desk at which a woman was tinkering with something that looked like a ghost-extractor of some sort from a movie, a woman who very clearly had horns twisting out of her skull.
Veronika reminded herself that everything here very well could be a test and that she had managed to deal with twins who were very likely copies of each other, as well as the Barbies and everything else so far, including a sunbeam that tried to eat her. She kept her slightly-intrigued smile on and stepped forward – carefully, as there was enough space for a step before she had to look around, but only for one step – and cleared her throat.
“Hello, I’m on my training run. I’m the new archivist, or at least I hope to be, if I survive the day.”
She’d gotten that far before the woman looked up at her.
When she considered this later, she wouldn’t be able to put her finger on what had told her the top-of-a-head-with-horns was female: possibly the bun, although she had encountered men with those, possibly the curve of the horns, somewhat suggestive, possibly the way that the neck looked?
Whatever it had been, when the woman looked up at her, she was – definitely – completely – utterly – female in a way that ought to have made Veronika feel lee put-together or somehow shabby. Women that put-together had always made her feel that way before.
But instead, when she was done with a momentary gaping, she found herself straightening just a little and feeling better about her chosen outfit and the way she looked than she had in days, possibly years. “Hello,” she finished, or repeated, or just said because – because wow.
The woman, in turn, smiled back at her. “Hello.” She sketched out a casual bow. “I am Amanana, and I assume you were looking for Supernatural and the Occult?”
“I was,” Veronika affirmed. “Ah, One and Two from Reprography walked me over here, so for once I was fairly certain that I had the right department. I see that I was right,” she offered with a playful smile that surprised her.
“You were indeed correct, yes. This is the Supernatural and Occult, and you must be something indeed if the folks from Reprography left their dismal cave to walk you over here.”
“Oh, I think that was, ah. That was because of the sunbeam.” She found she was glowering again. That stupid sunbeam. “They heard me… scream. When I found the skeletons.”
“Oh, that thing.” Amanana made a face of disdain. “I’m sorry that you got close to it – oh, no, not close to it, was it? In its grasp for a moment.” She didn’t quite sniff the air, but she was looking all around Veronika in a way that suggested she wasn’t looking at her. “Well done, then, well done. You are accounting quite well for yourself so far. Come on in – here, this way – and have a cup of tea, why don’t you, and some biscuits, no, everyone gives biscuits, I’ve got some finger sandwiches.”
“You know,” Veronika followed her as carefully as if she knew the only way through a deadly swamp. “I’m not sure if it’s really all that good that the only way to impress people around here is to not quite die.”
“Oh, it’s not the only way. You could die valiantly; that would impress people.” Amanana gestured to dismiss her own comment. “To be honest, it’s not even close to the only way to impress, but it’s one of the quicker.” Behind something that looked like a tapestry of the Tree of Life, a small table was set, a teapot and a tray of finger sandwiches waiting. The teapot was steaming slightly.
“You’re quite well prepared.” Veronika should know better than to comment on it, but she was starting to feel as if anything she knew better about, perhaps, she ought to rethink and perhaps not know better all.
“I like to be friendly to my guests. This department doesn’t get all that many members of the public – we get borrow requests, of course, pull requests, but people don’t want to come up here. Not even to the next floor down, where we have a more friendly area, a more public-looking foyer of sorts. They’re scared.” She sneered. “Not of me. If they were scared of me, perhaps, I would understand it. People fear, sometimes, those who are-“
“-Different,” she finished. “People fear the unknown as well, I suppose, and that’s why they don’t want to come here, oh, listen to me.” She cleared her throat. “Here, have a seat, please, and some sandwiches and perhaps a couple treats? As I was saying, I don’t get all that much company. So perhaps I just hope you’ll spend a little time-” She held up her hand, smiling, even as Veronika managed to sit down, finally. “-not long, I know. You have your entire finding challenge to do, and you don’t want it to take forever- figuratively speaking, of course. I don’t believe it’s really ever taken anyone forever, ah.” She put her finger to her lip and hrmmed.
Oh, good.Want more?