Frist thing’s first, this is not finished yet. Kay? There will be three chapters. This, obviously, is the first. To whoever wrote this prompt, I hope I managed to meet what you wanted. And to everyone out there who is like me and cannot comprehend the possible use for a Snuggie, this is for you, too. For those who are unfamiliar with the Snuggie, I think this expresses it quite well.
No straight-up romance, comedy
Artemis and Holly want to get presents for each other…
“Yes.” The response was so immediate and definitive that it would have persuaded her if it had been about anything else. This particular choice, however, was altogether too ridiculous to agree to with less than a world-class debate.
Foaly rolled his eyes, shooting a disdainful glare her way. She held up both palms, fending off his potential patronizing comments.
“It’s just…” she began, eyeing the thing in front of her with disgust, “it’s so…”
“Utterly, brilliantly perfect?” Foaly finished for her, sounding exasperated. “‘Thank you so much, Foaly, my miracle of a best friend, for helping me see the light’?”
Holly rolled her eyes and, with a wrinkled nose, dropped the obscenity back onto the tabletop it came from. Just touching it made her tense, let alone stuffing it into a box and shipping it off to one of her best friends. Wrapping it would have felt like hiding a pile of dwarf manure behind a hill of beautiful flowers and hoping no one would notice the stench.
“No,” she proclaimed firmly, crossing her arms over her chest. Foaly let out an amused snort.
“Why not?” he asked mockingly. “You don’t care about the poor boy’s comfort at all?”
Holly rolled her eyes, making ready to walk to the next table. There was no way- absolutely no way in hell- that this… this eye-offending monstrosity was going anywhere near her hands again anytime soon.
“Yes, the poor boy,” she responded dryly. “Such a tragedy to deprive him of something so unbelievably pointless.”
Foaly raised an eyebrow, for all the world seeming serious.
“Pointless?” he asked, his tone sounding almost hurt. “This little baby can do it all!”
Holly checked the clock on the wall. It was almost time for her shift; she would have to decide on something quickly. Warily, she glanced back at the abandoned option, fighting back a shudder. Humans, she thought, think of the most incomprehensibly useless things…
Holly turned towards the door and began to make her way out into the plaza once again. It was clear that they weren’t going to find anything suitable for him in this poor excuse for a shop. Perhaps they should have left their shopping underground after all.
Shop aboveground, he tells me, the elf thought icily, They’ll have things he likes on the surface, he tells me… She shook her head, ignoring her friend’s protests from behind as she pushed her way into the bustling crowd outside. Never listen to the centaur. Never listen to the centaur…
Holly shivered against the biting cold of the Irish suburb, suddenly thankful for the warmth of the hoard around her. Thanks to Foaly’s newest invention, she could blend in perfectly with a human crowd, and change back to her normal elf self whenever she chose. It hadn’t occurred to her until that moment that this shopping trip in Dublin could just have been an excuse to try out his fancy new toy.
The shops in this area of town were clustered together, each window boasting of why this one was so much more worthy of her business than the last. Her eyes traced the long line of bundled-up humans trailing out of a coffee shop, and she rolled her eyes. Fifteen minutes in this freezing cold for a latte? Whoever dared to claim that most humans were sane had another think coming.
Sighing, Holly turned to wait for her abandoned friend as he pushed his way through the labyrinth of bodies, his own matching the Mud-men’s exactly. She giggled as he stumbled, tripping over a pronounced crack in the sidewalk. He may have been able to walk on two legs now, but that didn’t mean he was any good at it.
When the centaur-turned-human caught up with her, she turned once again and began to continue down the path, in a considerably more dignified manner than her companion. The light glinted off the store windows, but nothing inside them caught her eye for a gift. She sighed once again, more heavily this time. What to buy for a genius who already stole everything?
They walked in silence for a few moments, allowing the cheerful shouts and laughing children around them provide the soundtrack to their footsteps. Holly bent her head down into her scarf, letting the steam that was her breath billow out around the fabric. The boy had better be grateful to her for enduring such low temperatures just to find him something remotely decent.
“Hey,” Foaly interjected playfully after some time, “I don’t see why you didn’t just buy it for him.”
Holly swiveled her gaze up to glare at her hopeless friend. He really did think she should have done it, even if just for a laugh. She shook her head, dismissing the though once again. That would have been entirely too cruel of her. What on Earth did humans expect to accomplish with a- what was the thing called? ah, yes- Snuggie?
Turning her head back from Foaly’s mocking gaze, Holly froze in her tracks, barely noticing as the unfortunate Mudwoman behind her collided with her, jerking her forward a step. Her mind tuned out Foaly’s concerned questions as she turned to face the shop window that was now in front of her. A grin slowly spread across her face.
“Yes,” she declared, a mischievous glimmer in her eyes. Next to her, Foaly gathered up the last of the fallen woman’s belongings and turned to match his gaze with his friend’s. His jaw dropped, and he found himself echoing the elf’s own reply from earlier.
“You’re serious?” he asked. His only answer came in the form of Holly rushing past him and into the store at large.