It was five minutes to quitting time and my mind was split between picking out my hat and coat from the lineup of the coat rack in the precinct’s lobby and deciding just how many times I could tip the Braidwood Cup in the next hour and five minutes. I’d love to tell you that the card that came in looked like Nullmage Shepherd, Evlish Scout or even Koth. I’d love to tell you a story about sultry silhouettes and silky voices just telling me how much help they needed from one of the Boxes Precinct’s detectives and I offered to help because I was generally overcome by stirrings of sexual attraction. That would have been awesome.
The reality is that nothing awesome happens in The Boxes. We’ve got nothing awesome up to the grand dome ceiling and its peeling, faded paint. Today’s not awesome was a rusted, two-headed my limping through the precinct’s double-doors, emanating a soft metal-on-metal grinding with each step. It wasn’t damaged in any way; quite the opposite. It had incorporated another myr (or two) into itself, but wasn’t quite smart enough to walk evenly on three legs. The top head, which boasted fewer welds than the other, looked up silently at me as the rest of it continued doggedly to the main desk. It said nothing, though its spindly limb spasmed somewhere between balance and entreaty. Of course the little wedge-head hadn’t welded itself onto something that could speak.
The Rhox sergeant at the desk cast a glance at me. Most cards that came in here did so with the assistance of another. Usually, the precinct’s knights, soldiers, or mercenaries hauled in some unruly elemental or an invective-shouting warrior for an untap’s worth of lock-up. If someone comes in under their own power, without fail it’s a case for the detectives. As the Myr passed me, I pointed at my watch and shrugged. The Rhox sergeant looked at the clock, still marking three ‘til five, and sighed as she thumbed through the rolodex for the Talas detectives.
The room was still again, with the exception of the irregular clacks of the silent Myr still slowly making its way to the desk along a newly worn path.
* * *
An hour later, it finally stopped leading me into The Guilded Rows. By darting its heads in different directions, then panning them to deliberately scan the horizons, I’d gathered it was looking for something. Now that we were in the rows reserved for artifacts, it alternated between pulling me deeper into the cardboard streets filled with bronze and silver inhabitants and flapping its arms. Now I was wandering the streets, nodding politely to Bronze Horses and Herbal Poultices and trying to remain inconspicuous while a two-headed myr flapped and limped beside me like a bird with three broken wings.