By Amanda Pizzolatto (Rated G)
Find more of the story here.
Elliot made absolutely sure that Kathleen wouldn’t reveal what she had seen, though he knew she had actually seen the rabbit. Unfortunately, the rabbit had run by them so fast that Kathleen couldn’t tell how tall he was nor the collar with his name on it.
“That’s perfectly all right, you can come back over tomorrow and try to figure out how tall he is and see his name on his collar. But at least you can see him now!” grinned Elliot.
“Did he ever explain why only a select few can see him?” asked Kathleen as the two walked back into the house.
Elliot shook his head. “He always changes the subject on me when I think I might get an answer from him. I’ll try again tonight and let you know tomorrow if he’ll finally let me know.”
Kathleen nodded. “Sounds good.” The two rejoined his family and Matthew in the living room where they chatted some more after the initial excitement of Kathleen having seen the rabbit had died down. But on the way home, Kathleen faced her biggest problem of the day, or at least what she considered her biggest problem.
“So, what color is the rabbit?” Matthew asked on the way back.
“Oh, um, I’m sorry, I, I can’t tell you. Elliot made me promise not to breathe a word outside of the fact that I had seen it.”
“Really? Now, why would that be?”
“Maybe because the rabbit’s curse will reverse if I say anything. You know how in all those fairy tales when someone’s under a curse and asks someone to do something or not to do something, there’s a reason behind it. I’ll trust Elliot and the rabbit on this one and not speak a word about it.”
“Even though you’re dying to,” Matthew egged on.
Kathleen groaned. “Yes, I want to say what it is, but I promised Elliot I won’t, and I won’t say another word, so please don’t ask me anymore about it.”
Matthew merely smiled, “Of course, as you wish.” He said no more about the rabbit but did pester her on her thoughts of the mayor’s son the rest of the way home. She finally revealed that he seemed like a nice fellow, but she couldn’t say for sure considering that they had just met.
Matthew chuckled. “Oh, I’m sure you’ll come to know him quite well.”
Kathleen glanced at him, “What do you mean by that?”
“Don’t worry about it. I must check up on a few things before heading to bed, so, I’ll see you tomorrow at the same time.”
“All right, good night.”
The next day the two were back at the mayor’s house at four o’clock sharp, Kathleen eager to attempt to figure out the rabbit’s height and try to see his name. Though she couldn’t help but eye the doorways, as on the way over Matthew had mentioned that the doorways of Amaryllion were exactly eight feet tall. But as she glanced at the doorways, she couldn’t help but wonder, why did he feel the need to mention that? Her attention was soon drawn back into the conversation that was going on around her, Matthew had directed the conversation to art and music, two of his particular favorites. From there, the conversation naturally involved Kathleen’s photography business and it eventually got Elliot’s interest in history involved as well.
Later, sometime after dinner, Kathleen and Elliot went outside for a little walk around the garden, hoping to see the rabbit again, all the while chatting some more. Kathleen was still wondering if Elliot had asked the rabbit, and when an opening happened, she took it.
“So, um, did you ask the rabbit? About why so few can see him?”
Elliot let out a sigh. “Yes, I did, but as always, he changed the subject on me. Though he also said that he wasn’t quite ready to tell me, so maybe ask him later. I don’t know, I’ll try again tomorrow, see what he says then. Maybe he’s under a curse and this is the only way to break it?”
Kathleen nodded. “I was wondering the same too, especially if neither of us is allowed to speak of what exactly we see. A lot of fairy tales seem to have that kind of command, if the one who is under a curse tells any, the curse either becomes elongated or permanent.”
Elliot nodded. “That’s what I was considering. In fact, I asked him specifically if that was the case, but I guess even though I had guessed it, he couldn’t say.”
Kathleen sighed. “Oh well, maybe if I can answer the next two questions, then he can answer ours.”
“I certainly hope so. Speaking of, where is that rabbit? Have you seen him?”
Kathleen shook her head. “No, I haven’t. Where could he be?”
“Oh, maybe he’s back at the house.”
“Wait, where does he sleep?”
Elliot grinned sheepishly. “In my room.”
“Uh . . . why not in one of your many guest rooms? You’ve got enough to spare.”
Elliot chuckled. “Yeah, that’s true, but my room also has got plenty of space to spare too. I’m afraid I’m a little more like you – I prefer smaller spaces.”
“Even though you’ve basically grown up as the mayor’s son?”
Elliot shrugged. “Basically, I mean, sure, having a lot of money is fine; it’s helped me pay for college, but I’d rather the simple life, you know what I mean?”
Kathleen smirked. “And quite possibly get out and see the world?”
Elliot smiled. “Quite possibly.” Kathleen smiled back, she understood quite well. A movement out of the corner of their eyes caught their attention, and the two glanced over.
Kathleen gasped as she grabbed Elliot’s arm. “Why, why he’s over eight feet tall!” Kathleen corrected herself and added an extra foot to accommodate for his ears, but Elliot quickly informed her that she was right the first time. The rabbit took a step forward towards them, and Kathleen stayed perfectly still as the collar around his neck came into focus. But a noise from behind the rabbit startled all three, and the rabbit bounded away.
“Oh no! Wait!” called out Kathleen as she tried to chase down the rabbit, but Elliot caught up with her and stopped her.
“Don’t bother, he’s too fast. Trust me, I’ve already tried going after him on several occasions.”
“But, but, I didn’t see his name!” blurted Kathleen.
Elliot let out a sigh. “Well, we’ll have to try to get that tomorrow. For now, I think we’d better let him calm down. He is like any regular rabbit, after all.”
Kathleen sighed. “Oh alright, fine. But, what startled him?”
“Kathleen! Kathleen! Sorry to have to cut this short, but I need to get back to the hotel! Leonard says it’s an emergency!” came Matthew’s voice.
“I guess it was him,” stated Elliot as the two headed back over to the house.
“Oh, there you two are. Why’d you run off like that when I was opening the back door?”
“Oh, we’re sorry Mr. Bleu, but Kathleen almost had the rabbit’s name. I’m afraid you opening the door frightened him off. Though he can speak, he still acts like any normal rabbit,” Elliot quickly added.
Matthew nodded. “I see, I’m sorry to have ruined a perfectly good moment, but I really must be going. We’ll be back tomorrow, and you can try again then, Kathleen.”
“Right, well, thank you for a wonderful time, regardless,” Kathleen smiled at Elliot.
“And a big thanks to you. I enjoyed myself as well, and I’m so thrilled that this will all be over soon.”
“I’ll bet. Though, what will happen to your rabbit friend once this is all over?” mused Matthew as they walked to the living room.
Elliot blinked. “To be honest, I really don’t know. I’ll ask him, that is if I can find him.”
“Oh, don’t worry about that, he’ll come back to you tonight.”
“What? What makes you say that?”
Matthew merely smiled and turned to the mayor, “Well, Mr. Mayor, I’ve found her, and I must apologize for needing to leave so soon.”
“Oh, you mustn’t worry about that at all, you’re a respectable businessman. If your clerks need you, then your clerks need you,” pointed out Mrs. Doherty.
“Thank you for understanding, ma’am. Now, Kathleen, we must be on our way.”
“Right, um, thank you all for another wonderful dinner and visit.”
“And thank you for coming,” stated the mayor.
“It’s been wonderful, my dear,” smiled his wife as she gave Kathleen a quick hug. A few minutes later, the two were back out on the road, racing towards the hotel.
“May I ask you a couple of questions?”
“As long as it doesn’t have to do with the hotel emergency, there are some things that a hotel owner cannot disclose to his guests.”
“No, actually, it has to do with the rabbit.”
Matthew’s eyebrow went up. “Yes?”
“First of all, how did you know that I would see the rabbit standing in front of a doorway?”
“Now what makes you think that I would know such a thing?”
“Well, you mentioned the size of the doors at Amaryllion on the way over there.”
“Doesn’t mean I knew you were going to see the rabbit standing in front of the doorway. I was merely giving you a pointer, something to compare the rabbit to in case the rabbit expected you to try and figure out his height based on merely glancing at him.”
“Oh, um, okay, that actually makes sense.”
“And your second question?” he asked after a moment’s silence.
“Oh, I’m sure you used the same thinking, but Elliot was curious as to how you knew the rabbit would be back tonight.”
Matthew merely shrugged. “Like you said, I used good ole logic. Tomorrow’s going to be the day that you answer the third question, I don’t think he’d miss that, even if he has been a pain to the rest of the town. I mean, you nearly saw the name today, right?”
“Well then, he won’t disappoint, he’ll show up tonight.”
“Alright then, if you say so,” shrugged Kathleen as the car came to a halt.
“I do say so. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have an emergency to tend to. I’ll see you tomorrow!” And with that, Matthew had disappeared into the building.