“It’s alright for you,” grumbled the tanuki, “when we go places, no-one wants to put you in a zoo.” He took a swig of his sake.
“I don’t know about that,” replied the lady, “I’ve been shoved into a mental asylum or two in my time. Scary places some of them and at least you’ve got a physical existence beyond your attributes. If you take away luck, I’m nothing, and there are entire religions that don’t believe in luck.”
“Any idea where the black cat is these days?” The tanuki essayed human form and a stout, round faced, little man took another swig of sake. “Being shoved in a zoo or even shot for the pot when people are hungry isn’t as bad as being destroyed for being alive.”
“He’s at my place “minding” the refrigerator,” the lady told her companion. “Apparently he gets a mixed reception these days: some people still want to kill him; some cat fanciers want to breed for his pretty, pure black coat; and some people just want to put him in a pound. He’s gotten a bit shy about taking his chances.”
“I imagine being burnt alive at the stake would do that to you,” the tanuki commented while looking around. “So, where are we? Biarritz? I like Biarritz. Good food and wine, beaches and the casinos. It just needs a thermal spa to be perfect.”
“No, not Biarritz this time.” The lady smiled down at him, “But I think you will like it.”
“Atlantic City? It’s got beaches.” The tanuki’s guise now included sunglasses.
“In the New World but no beaches this time.” The glance the lady gave him reminded the tanuki that once she had been a full, acknowledged goddess of one of the world’s greatest realms. “Lots of worshippers though and throngs more willing to be converted.” She opened the service entrance door, security could make of the footage what they would, and they stepped out into the casino floor. “Las Vegas is our kind of town.”