This story will appear in Holly’s anthology In Poor Taste, due out in 2018!
“This ticket is valid. I bought it weeks ago. Let me in,” said Flip.
The troll on guard shook his head. “You’re on the list.”
“The list. You’re not allowed inside.”
It was the worst thing a trickster could hear; it was more painful than the terrible “I know your real name!“, and even more painful than “I’m sorry, she didn’t make it.” Being barred from the Convention was worse than having a piece of his soul chewed off by a demon.
“But why?” Flip demanded. He paid his dues to the fairy society every month. He met his yearly magic quota. His wings were regulation glittered and he had brought a bottle of baby tears for the Ghoul. What could possibly have landed him on the list?
“Says here you’re not funny,” said the guard.
“Says you cost the Convention too much money on cleanup last year. There’s a note here. Tell Flip that blowing up a line of port-a-potties does not count as a prank.”
“Who said that?” Flip demanded. “Of course it’s a prank. It was a commentary on the state of the Trickster economy. There was crap everywhere. It was hilarious!”
“No entry,” said the guard.
“I want to talk to your superior! I’m the funniest Trickster in the community. You can’t do this to me!”
“Get over yourself, Flip,” said the next in line. Flip whirled to face the leprechaun and shoved a finger in his face.
“Say that again, I dare you!” Flip said.
“Get over yourself. You’re not funny and everyone knows it. You’ve never once tricked a human into anything useful. How many babies have you stolen?” The leprechaun smirked at Flip’s silence. “There, you see? Useless.”
“Shut your stupid face, O’Kenny!”
“Or what, you’ll make me?”
“That’s enough,” said the guard. “No entry, fairy. Turn around and go home.”
Flip couldn’t miss the Convention. On the eve of March 31 all the Tricksters got ridiculously drunk together and spent April Fool’s wreaking havoc on humanity. It was the best day of the year. What would he do tomorrow without the company of his people?
Flip shed a single sparkling tear.
“Hah! Got you,” said the guard.
“April Fool’s, fairy. Tricksters aren’t the only ones with a sense of humour.” The guard stepped back to let Flip pass.
On that day, Flip learned a new respect for troll kind.
He also tripped O’Kenny right into a port-a-potty for revenge, so his self-growth was offset and he learned nothing.