“No, absolutely not! You are out of your mind!” The voice came from down the corridor, where Digit and Bola had flown. Amanita looked up from the pile of shredded paper she was working on, it was such a joy to tear the pretty pictures in half. The boy pixie was storming out of a room followed by the hedgehog and the little pixie girl. “There is nothing you can do or say that will make me tangle with that crow!” It wasn’t much of a surprise that Digit and Bola couldn’t get the job done, but still it annoyed her that this rag tag trio had seemingly bested her lackeys. Amanita was about to wonder what had happened to them, but she found she didn’t care enough to speculate. It was disappointing, but she could always find new followers, they were easy to replace. She watched silently as the boy stormed across the corridor, Corvix twitched his wings. It was good that at least one of them understood the danger her crow presented.
“You are a coward Squigg, a big selfish coward who just wants to look out for himself,” the girl shouted after him. Interesting, could be there was trouble between them? The hedgehog was looking from one to the other, clearly undecided between the two. This was good, this was very good, she could use this. Amanita had no doubt Corvix and herself could take care of all three, but why take risks that you didn’t need to. Why not try to swing the odds into her favour.
“Oh my,” Amanita called loudly, “Do I detect a little bit of friction, perhaps some trouble in paradise?” The trio quickly hid in the door frames on either side of the corridor, the boy and the hedgehog to the left near the big hall, the girl to the right. Behind Amanita Corvix cawed loudly, he was getting restless. She forced a smile to her lips and said as sweetly as possible. “If you want to go you can, I won’t stop you.” The scruffy looking pixie popped his head out.
“That’s mighty generous of you Miss Crow Lady, I want no trouble with you I just want to get out of this mad house.” He sounded scared, he should be. Amanita did her best to laugh happily, a sound she wasn’t used to making.
“My dear boy, the name is Amanita and I never wanted to keep you,” she let the happiness drop from her voice, she needed to even the odds, she needed to scare him off, “but if you stay and get in my way I will feed you to Corvix, and my crow is very hungry.” The goggled headed boy popped out again.
“Right you are Miss Angry Crow Lady, come on Sprocket.” The hedgehog snuffled. “Do you want to stay here and get eaten?” the boy asked, the hedgehog was quiet for a moment, it looked at the scruffy pixie, then the girl, then down the corridor towards herself and Corvix. It squeaked a noise and shuffled into the big hall. Fantastic. Before she could become too happy with herself Amanita could hear the shrill voice of the bossy girl.
“Go on then, go, you pair of cowards,” she shouted. Clearly she wasn’t as smart as the boy and his hedgepig. The heavy door to the big hall slammed shut, the little pixie girl was left alone. Still Amanita thought, if they all left there wouldn’t be much fun for Corvix, and he did need feeding. She turned to the huge bird and pulled from one of its pouches a wooden stick with a pink blob on the end. Amanita didn’t much care for big folk things, only the really valuable stuff, but these were something she really enjoyed. She struck the match along the wall and it erupted into bight flames. Such wonderful inventions she thought and held the flame to the pile of papers she had built. The fire caught quickly, spreading to the books. It crawled along them, climbing and devouring as though it had a mind of its own. The fire would take care of the big building, and she would take care of the silly little pixie girl.
“Corvix darling,” she cooed at the crow as she hopped into the saddle, “it’s feeding time my love.”