"This aughta be quick, just gotta drop some stuff off at void storage."
”I think I’ll get a bit of lunch while you attend to business." Anukaar mused, hesitating at the foot of the stairs. "I heard a barker for Summer’s Rest say something about a special on sunstones and tiger opal which sounds delightful.”
"You sure? I thought you might leap at th’ opportunity ta visit wit some othah Ethereals, isolated as we been and I figahed we can stop here for a while! Ain’t nothin like Pandarian hospitality! Hot tubs, booze, great food, and th’ softest beds I’ve evah seen! Cept that one place… what kinda sickos use yak fur as bedding, I nearly died!"
”I was actually thinking we could stop at the Tavern in the Mists instead. It’s not terribly far and we could stop by the black market to browse a bit before returning to the lab.”
"Alright, suit yourself! See ya in a bit, don’t spend too much on fancy gems if we’re gonna go shoppin! A cheap date you ain’t." Roulette grinned over her shoulder as she bounded up stairs clearly made for taller individuals.
He flickered in response then slipped toward Summer’s Rest. The shrine was lovely but he couldn’t help but feel a bit uneasy. Still, few establishments had extended their menu to serve Ethereals and it was silly not to take advantage. He collected a bowl of gems, paying and thanking the Pandaren hostess, then sought a private booth.
”Anukaar! Is that you?" A male voice echoed behind him. A very different sort of flicker shuddered through the violet spirit peeking from his bandages. It was much harder to pretend he hadn’t heard one of his own people than it was to fool corporeals. They could read all the subtle changes in glow and pattern that corporeals missed.
The bandaged hand clapped down on his shoulder just as he reached his table and he reluctantly turned.
”Sun and Shade, Shadzor.” Anukaar said amiably, caught.
"It IS you! So Azeroth is where you ran off to, I assumed you were dead.” The more traditionally dressed Ethereal laughed. “You must tell me if the rumors I’ve heard are true! I was working in Nagrand when the whirlwind you were at the center of took Netherstorm, I’m sorry to have missed it! It sounded like quite a sight!”
Sighing, Anukaar sat. “I’d really rather not… I’m in a bit of a hurry, to be honest.”
The taller Ethereal shrugged off the not so subtle hint easily. “I heard you conned the Ethereum out of a significant sum and they had the audacity to send assassins after you at the Stormspire! It must have been quite a haul to anger them so, and bold of you to risk it! Is that true?”
”…Mm. Sort of.”
”I also heard they found you hiding in that little overpriced lab we were gouging some goblin on -surprised that deal was still going on so long after I’d left, I thought they had a lifespan of a week or so?- and she summoned a voidwalker on the Spire itself! A voidwalker! Which set itself upon the assassins and guards both! Please tell me that’s true, it’s far too amusing, Haramad must have been furious!”
Anukaar rubbed his face with both hands. ”…”
”It is!" Shadzor laughed. "Winds, that’s amazing! However are you still alive!”
”…He may forget.”
”The Void and the Ethereum raining chaos right under his nose in his own sanctuary? Ha, good luck my friend! There’s too few of us for something like that to go unaccounted for! Oh Anukaar, you madman, what have you been up to since? You must be still living off the hoard you won from the Ethereum! Are you interested in some magical improvements to…whatever it is you’re wearing? Winds, you have gone native, what ARE you wearing?”
Anukaar straightened his jacket and adjusted his goggles self-consciously. “Not interested, thank you.”
"Yo, Annie, you ready ta head out?" Roulette waved as she entered the inn. Shadzor’s head snapped up.
”Shaffar’s Tomb, is that the same goblin?!" He gawked, laughing.
"Eh? Nope, not th’ same goblin at all, what th’ hell? Anyway, just wanted t’ let th’ guy know his ride is ready and waitin outside, sheesh." She spun on her heel and headed toward the exit.
Anukaar stood, pouring the gem bowl out into a pouch. “Looks like I’ll be consuming my meal on the way. Trade Winds at your back, Shadzor.”
”And yours, Anukaar. You need them more than I." He shook his head and stole the emptied seat as the priest followed the little goblin.
Nebula the cloud serpent was coiled patiently on the platform, Roulette just finishing fussing with the saddlebags.
”How much did you hear?" He asked quietly.
"Nothin. ‘Not th’ same gob’ is a reflex. You okay?"
He flickered. “Fine, thank you Ruulette. Let’s go.”
"You got it, pal."