kawaii in the streets, senpai in the sheets
The bard's heart is pounding like a drum, hard and fast. Lockette knows the reaction to be fear, and the onset is sudden enough for Lockette to raise an eyebrow. Her question was, maybe, pointed, but not threatening - or at least she didn't think so. Maybe the bard was nervous over the scars? Lockette moves from the conversation, groping a rotted window sill for her large, darkly tinted glasses, which, when she fits them over her face, covers most of the more gruesome scar tissue. Or, at least as far as she can tell with her fingers.
She catches the tail end of Riley and the bard's conversation, and she pipes in, "The tree's been cut down for half a century, bard. Y'could ask the friend I sent for a swim in the fountain about the specifics, but as far as I get to hear, it was special to him. Tuesday, I mean. Tuesday is a bit of a dick, as magpies tend to be, and before Tuesday got into fight with the Jarl of Bears, the Jarl came by with an axe and a bone to pick and chopped it down. It was some sort of aide to the Magpie's powers, or something, and I think the Jarl of Bears thought it would give him a leg up. It's only gossip and rumours, though."
Close proximity to the stomping grounds of the fae meant Lockette constantly brushed elbows with them. It was a bit of a tragic thing, really - maybe the curse gave her an affinity to see and speak with the all fae that were otherwise unknown to everyone else. Lockette, as many others in Royesland did to avoid their spite, left treats and treasures out for them to claim as they saw fit, but being able to see the fae coming and going piqued their interest and meant that they often hung around the borders of her home. There were a handful that were bolder than that, and would pester her inside the threshold of her home with pointless fairy gossip. Even if Lockette were interested to known what fairy was fighting with whichever other fairy - which she's not - the fairies were hopelessly lost on the timeline of their own tales. The rebuttal to Lockette daring to point that out was always the same 'oh, what the fuck ever. It was all in the past. I dunno.'
Realizing she's zoned out, Lockette continues, "Regardless, didn't help the Jarl of Bears any, from what I've heard. I have no idea what happened to him, besides the fact that he ended up no longer being the King of the Forest anymore. I'd be curious to know what happened to him and his royal house or whatever - the Donovans' married off one of their daughters to him something like hundred years ago," Lockette pauses, then scoffs to herself, "Goddess, listen to me. I think the woods are getting to me. I'm just info dumping fairy gossip. Anyway, long story short, I think this was the-"
Her brain grinds to a halt on her last thought, and she finishes her sentence after clearing her throat, "... This was the Donovan ancestral home. And Tuesday's tree was here. Not sure how that happened."
A daughter. Disappearing from the mundane town and being married into the fairy courts. One hundred years ago. Who else did Lockette know that used to be local, and now has a one hundred year old, probably-definitely-caused-by-the-fae gap in her memory? And now the Magpie King's mortal friend was here asking about a 'Truffle', who was part of his court?
... Could be a coincidence? Just... a really spot on coincidence? That explains close to everything weird that's happened with Riley?
Only one way to check, Lockette thinks to herself, then asks, "Riley, can I touch your ears for a second?"
Gently, so she doesn't accidentally hit Riley in the face, Lockette reaches out, brushing Riley's braid out of the way and running her finger on the edge of Riley's ear, which, like Lockette's, comes to a point at the end.
So, not a coincidence. Nothing is ever simple.
"Well, anyway," Lockette says lamely, "I don't know anyone named Truffle." Which was true, because she knew a Riley, not a Truffle. "Riley doesn't know anyone named Truffle." Which was true, because Riley's memory was filled with nothing. "So... Is there anything else I can do for you? Because I've got a roof to rebuild."