All the gods had their breath held in anticipation and fear for Premysl. The tricky spirit came and left like the wind, laughter following them like blown leaves.
April fools was coming up, perhaps one of the worst (or best) inventions of the mortals. Minor spirits enjoyed the small holiday, a time of laughs and good jokes among friends, but the gods had reputations to uphold. And upholding reputations got increasingly harder as one is known for being dyed pink with red spots, or poisoned to talk backwards.
But the day had been quiet, peaceful almost if it hadn’t been for the lingering tension in the air.
Bud N. Blume was a young spring spirit. He was skipping happily to a tree where he knew Premysl was waiting for him.
“Greetings!” He called.
A leaf morphed into a bony redhead. They lounged lazily on a branch looking at their nails bored. “Greetings.” They hummed back.
“You remember the favor I asked of you?” Bud asked, hopefully looking up at the spirit who was sitting on the branch.
“Of course.” They nodded. “You helped me and I shall always return the favor.”
It was early spring and Bud had just begun waking up dryads from their long winter sleep when the ground began to shake.
“Help! He’ll kill me!” A high pitched voice cried.
Bud looked up and saw Premysl running towards him tripping on the ground frantically. The shakes were becoming larger and closer. A thundering god was quick behind if what was happening suggested anything.
“Quick change!” He cried softly, “I’ll cover for you.”
Premysl hid on the tree as a blue bird. The god was enormous. He looked mad, furious, but Bud couldn’t help but break a smile. The god’s armor was pink and had lace everywhere.
Spirits almighty, he couldn’t laugh at a war god.
“Where is the little bug!?” Ares roared.
“Ah, Ares! So good to see you!” Bud beamed shouting up at the giant god. “Back from Troy for a bit?”
Ares growled peering down at the young spirit. “Where is he?”
“Premysl is a shifter, he probably disappeared.” Bud shrugged.
Ares growled and chucked a piece of his armor into a nearby tree. The spring spirit dodged his armor that was now pink because of that trickster gnat! That miserable trickster ruined his armor! And they didn’t even have the courage to face him!
A bluebird began chirping loudly in the tree almost angry. He gazed at the strange bird curiously.
Bud huffed, the piece of armor had missed him by the skin of his teeth. He saw Ares looking at Premysl. “Please! Avoid harming the dryads!” He said, thinking quickly. “I’m just waking them up.”
Ares huffed. He shrunk down as he calmed. “Tell me if the coward shows his face.” He ordered.
Bud saluted as the war god marched off to change. He relaxed when Ares had left, the trickster could have given himself up. Premysl shifted into a more human appearance, sharp edges everywhere. Sharp nose, sharp blue eyes, sharp shoulders. “Thank you.” They bowed. Red locks fell in their face as they bowed. When they looked up, their eyes were filled with glee. “War gods never can take a joke.”
Bud laughed. “They never can!”
Premsyl laughed like leaves flying in the wind. “I am Premsyl the sly." They smiled and held out their hand. "And who are you?"
"I'm Bud N. Blume." He said brightly and took their hand and shook it. "How on the river styx did you do that to Ares armor?"
Premsyl held a finger up to their mouth, their eyes sparkilng. "Trade secret!" Premsyl bowed again "How may I repay your kindness?”
Bud didn’t have to think long. He was terrible at any form of retribution, pranks or otherwise. The only thing he could do as vengeance was kill a couple flowers on command. Oooh so scary!
Premsyl on the other hand could do so much. Bud had heard that Premysl had once stolen Eros’ and caused Athena to pine for Artemis. The poetry that Athena had recited caused the goddess’s cheeks to redden more than the feathers in her helmet.
“Have you heard of Old man winter?” Bud asked, smiling. “You could very easily pay me back by pranking him.”
Premsyl beamed at the time. “Of course!”
Now Premsyl seemed dull as they sat in the tree. “I’m not sure about the favor now. I just don’t feel like it this year.”
Bud blinked. “I helped you!” He cried. “I saved you from Ares, a god who could kill me with a glance! I can’t believe you! I ask for a favor this year and you turn me down, ‘cause you don’t feel like it’? All I ask for is a small piece of retribution on Frost butt!”
Premsyl began to snicker, interrupting the spirit’s rant. “Fost butt?”
“Old man winter has been insulting my work for centuries,” Bud snapped. “I can call him whatever I want!” He puffed up her cheeks turning red as roses. “So you just aren’t doing it now.”
Bud gaped for a minute like one of the naiads out of water. He lay down on the ground feeling like a mortal child and pouted. The warm breeze blew over his face as he accepted his fate to never get revenge on the sour old winter spirit.
Premysl hopped down from the tree. They stared at Bud standing over the body. “Are you that disappointed?”
“Frost butt can just be so mean.” Bud sighed.
Premysl snickered. “I know that far too well. He can insult as fluently as rivers flow. Don’t worry, I’ll get him.”
Bud looked at him suspiciously. “Are you tricking me again? Or are you really going to do it?”
“Well, it’s too obvious if I attack today! On April fools, how obvious would that be?” Premysl asked coyly. The corners of their mouth was tuning up and their eyes were gleaming with mischief. “What’s the point of falling into a pattern?”
Several months later Old man winters entire wardrobe became brightly colored hawaiian shirts.