Hammer of the Gods
"It is said that when one strikes the Bell of the Universe with the Hammer of the Gods the path between worlds will open. Some devout Brixies want to do this in order to enter a parallel universe in which Homo sapiens died out and only the Brixies are left. Such a world is like heaven to them. They call it Brixton.
"Some say that ringing the bell and rending the veil between universes will destroy them. Some say it will destroy only ours. Could you please pass the butter?"
Troy, Maggie, Abby and Dart were all sitting around Troy's breakfast nook table. Abby had made an omelet for each of them, but only Troy ate as the others just sat and listened to him.
Doctor Troy Green drank some coffee and delightfully chewing his mushroom and cheese omelet.
They were all dressed: Maggie in the clothes she had worn the previous night, only at this time they were all completely on; Dart still wore the tux he came in on; and Abby was in Troy's robe. Troy had washed and dressed in a tweed jacket, sweater vest, violet paisley tie, wool trousers with cargo pockets and boots. The bulges of harmonicas were obvious in his pockets.
"This is delightful, Abby. Everyone, eat up."
Everyone didn't eat up. Only Abby, sensing her food would freeze on the plate, took a bite.
"But what is a Brixie?" Dart asked, "Could it be involved with my daughter's abduction?"
Troy held up his empty fork, "Complicated and I don't know." He filled his fork, filled his mouth and chewed thoughtfully.
"Brixies are a race of people, not at all closely related to Homo sapiens. They are at least as intelligent as us, and as old a race, but they are not in the genus Homo nor did they evolve the way we did. They have been beside or with us for many millennium.
"Often they've been mistaken for Little People, fairies, pixies and such. They do know and are capable of magic. In fact, I learned my magic from Brixie friends. The ones that came here and stole the Hammer were from a sect that call themselves the Guns of Brixton, dedicated to bringing about or even hastening the rise of Brixton. Whether they or any other Brixies are involved with your daughter's abduction or who this wizard woman is, I don't know." He shrugged, "The more pressing matter is, they've likely taken the hammer to -"
"Well, I'd like to know," Dart said. "I thought you could help me."
Troy nodded, "I did give you that indication and I will help you. The trouble is, I have very little information and two completely different sources. You know your daughter was taken away. I know the Hammer of the Gods has been taken away. We do not know the severity nor the likelihood of the risk to the former. I do know the severity of the latter, but I don't know the likelihood.
"Still, I can't take a chance with something of this magnitude. I must go after the Hammer first. I don't ask any of you to come with, but I would appreciate and benefit if Abby would."
Dart slammed his palm on the table and stood, "I realize the world MAY end, but I know my daughter is in trouble and needs help."
Maggie spoke up. She had been so silent it caused everyone to turn in silence, though she didn't speak loudly at all, "Why don't we do both? Abby and I know Troy is very capable at handling two issues at the same time." She was smiling when she started, but the blush blossomed on her face until even her ears were red. She hid both her embarrassment and arousal by taking a large forkful of omelet and focusing on its delightful taste.
Troy cleared his throat and purposefully avoided Abby's smile, "Let's formulate a plan then. The problem is, although I can handle, ahem, two issues at once; I cannot be in two places at once. Only I know how to handle the Guns, and I'm the only one in the room that knows magic."
"Do we need magic to follow up on Dart's wizardess?" Abby asked.
"What?" Dart asked as he sat back down.
"You said you have too little information," Abby continued. "Why not let us gather information from Dart's problem."
"Yes," Maggie said, "I can lead that."
"You can?" Dart, Abby and Troy asked.
"Yes," she said as if saying, "Duh!" She took another forkful of omelet, chewed and let them lean closer and closer. "I'm a detective, didn't you know?"
Abby and Troy turned and stared at each other, "I had no idea," they chorused. "What sort?" Abby asked.
Dart looked at all of them for a moment, "You three were sleeping together, weren't you?" He asked, his face brightening in knowledge, "And none of you know who the other is, do you?"
"I work for a private detective firm in Chicago called Acme Ace Advanced Detective Service."
Abby smiled broadly, "This sounds like a good idea. Troy and I will pursue the Guns of Brixton, and Maggie - "
"They know nothing of magic. Despite what I'm sure are excellent investigative skills, young Detective Pipp would not know what to look for nor how."
"We have to try, don't we?" Dart said.
Troy opened his mouth to answer, but he was interrupted by a bass chord at least as loud as the magical notes he had played on the didgeridoo. The vibrations permeated them all and they could feel another magical spell winding its way around and through them.