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“Good evening. I’m Nicole Winters…”
Nicole was a lovely vixen in her late twenties. Her striking red fur and piercing gold eyes did a great deal to keep viewership high, but her incomparable focus and dedication to her work spoke volumes of her character. She’d been with the station for only six months, yet had already risen in rank from a street-side reporter to co-anchor of the program. Needless to say, this did not set well with everyone…
“… and I’m Tom Renton. In our top story…”
Tom smiled to keep up a professional appearance, but secretly resented playing second to anybody, especially someone so young. He’d been working as a reporter for a long time and he knew what was in store for him. They bring in a fresh young face to brighten up the place and saddle them up with a seasoned vet until they’re comfortable with the routine. Nicole wasn’t his partner; she was his replacement!
Glitter and GoldieGoldie had been on the road for quite some time when he finally spotted a village on the horizon. The prospect of sleeping in a bed rather than out in the open gave him the strength to press on and, in no time at all, he arrived in Crooksford.
He made arrangements to spend the night and put down his last coin for supper. The night was young and the fox soon grew board. He decided to venture out and see what the town had to offer. Even without a cent to his name, a traveler could always find welcome at the local pub. Spinning tales and making boasts could earn a drink or two and it was a sure way to while away the hours.
The villagers were colorful and made for good company. He told of his adventures and they offered up advice and good cheer.
“The swamps in this area are so full of thorns; you’d be wise to get some footwear, boy!”
“Such a fine long coat, yet you go about without even a set of sandals? Your pads must be hard as rock!”
“I hear there are
A New Way to Haggle
"Ratchet? You in here?"
"I'm under here, Rocky. Just give me a minute and I'll be all set…"
The Doberman's boots stuck out from under his car and the coyote could hear her hard at work on the undercarriage. Rachel Halling, better known as Ratchet of River Street, was the best in all of Blackthorn. Even if most people were still reluctant to trust a female mechanic, those in-the-know knew who to turn to.
"You're lucky I could squeeze you in! I have seven more today, alone!"
"Tis the season!"
"You're telling me! Black ice on the streets, drunk drivers coming home from parties, snow plows knocking off mirrors; it's a wonder I have time to eat!"
"I thought as much…"
Rocky looked around the room. The garage had a car in every bay save one piled high with tools and parts. The windows were clean and the floor was spotless, yet something was missing…
"Looks like you haven't had time to decorate, either."
"Ha!" she laughed. "I have more on my mind than flashing lights and holly!"
The last rays of setting sun faded from the high arched windows as Randy made his way through the aging castle halls. An abrupt change from sun-warmed tiles to polished marble flooring signaled his arrival in the Tower of Abjuration. The young wizard padded on, heedless of the cold hanging in the air.
By the time he reached the top of the tower's frosty stairs, icicles hung from every whiskers and snow coated every hair. For the average human, magical or not, the situation would be dire, but for a sturdy Wolfkin, the cold proved only a miner hazard.
Randy dusted the snow from his robes and shook himself dry as only a canine can before knocking on the heavy oaken door at the stairway's summit.
"You wanted to see me, Master Hargrove?"
"Randy! Yes, please come in."
Randy shrugged out of his dripping robe and hung it by the fire. He had no boots to shed and though he felt no modesty, proper manors bid him retain the slacks.
"Randy, I've been asked to deal with a very… special assignment. T
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