Disclaimer: don't own the Bartimaeus Trilogy OR the character OR the plot. Jonathon Stroud owns that.

Hm… Are we shipping here? I honestly don't know…. Well, I guess that this shall be one of those "up-to-the-readers" situations. I mean, you can view it as shipping; you can view it as Bartimaeus getting revenge; you can even view it as a waste of time.

It's not fair! I typed up more than half a chapter at the library but I couldn't email it to myself and my time ran out T_T. I did that last week and was too depressed to try and write a new one… Until now…

Last time…

"I know what to do now…"

Bartimaeus bent back down until his head was slightly lower than the magician's. Nathaniel's breath tickled the silky hair on Ptolomy's head. Bartimaeus let three cold digits dance their way up Mandrake's chest to where his neck lay exposed.

Then with the ferocity of a crazed tiger the djinni began tickling the boy.

Nathaniel squirmed against the gravestone, pride and dignity fighting against a desire to close his eyes and pretend he was still a child being tickled by Mrs. Underwood. He wanted to close his mind and live in that moment, before everything else had happened, for better or for worse.

In the end what erupted from him was a strangled giggle and pleas for Bartimaeus to stop. But to the demon's trained ears, the pleas were not whole-hearted.

Tears began streaming down his face, the first ones that had fallen since that night so long ago.

Bartimaeus wondered whether these tears were from the indignation of being tickled or from something else.

The boy tilted his head back, and Bartimaeus grinned. The boy actually liked being tickled; he actually WANTED to be tickled.

So the djinni stopped.

What good it a punishment if the victim wanted – practically begged – for it?

Nathaniel opened his eyes to look the demon.

"Naughty, so naughty," the demon whispered. "You are one of the mighty ones of the Empire. You should not want to be tickled, especially not by the likes of me. So why, Nathaniel?"

As the djinni finished Nathaniel's clouded mind cleared.

"Don't call me that!" he cried.

"Oh please, who's going to hear us? Definitely not one of the many enemies you've made in the government."

Nathaniel thought back to the magicians who had accidentally allowed their birth name to slip. One particularly notable one was when a magician had allowed the name to be learned by a lowly imp. Thinking it was nothing, the magician did not find ways to shut the imp up. This was followed by the imp telling a foliot the name, and so on, until it was heard by a marid. One day when the magician was out shopping, the marid came upon him and tore him to pieces.

The boy gulped. "No magicians will hear, but what of your fellow de – spirits?"

The Egyptian boy rolled his eyes. "Why would they care?"

Nathaniel shrugged. "It's weird; I just feel as though they don't like me very much. Djinn in general, I mean."

Bartimaeus fought back the urge to roll his eyes yet again. "I wonder why…"

"Yes, it is truly perplexing… Anyways, I can't bloody tickle you now, seeing as you enjoy it."

The boy gave a squawk of protest which was promptly cut off by Bartimaeus.

"Don't try to deny it. So what else are you afraid of?"

Nathaniel pouted and stared straight ahead.

"Oh do try and be cooperative, Natty-boy."

The djinni could almost hear the gears in his mind whirring as he tried to think of something. Finally he gave up.

"Come on," Bartimaeus growled. "Let's go somewhere else where I can think better." Saying so he grabbed the teen by one of his legs and, flapping gigantic wings that had materialized on Ptolomy's back, flew heavenward.

Nathaniel freaked out then. Crying out, he tried to right himself. Not two seconds after their rapid ascent, he could feel the blood rushing to his head. Bartimaeus was holding him by one leg which felt as though it would be torn out of its socket if the situation remained as is for much longer.

The magician could feel his fear of heights building up, mixing with the butterfly-in-his-stomach sensation he always got when he was too close to Bartimaeus.

Bartimaeus stopped suddenly. Slowly he turned his gaze toward the cowering magician. "Did you … just scream?"

Nathaniel relaxed slightly. At least they weren't moving.

The demon narrowed his eyes. "Surely you aren't afraid of heights. But that scream right there suggests otherwise…" A truly demonic smile made its ways onto his face. "Why don't we test that theory?"

He swung Nathaniel slowly, from side to side, as if preparing to throw him.

The boy shut his eyes; trying to ignore the dizzying sensation the demon was causing him and instead focusing on something else. It did not work.

"S-stop! Put m – aaaah – Put me down!" Nathaniel cried.

Bartimaeus smirked. "Of course. Your wish is my command." With that he let go of Nathaniel's leg.

The magician fell, head first, toward the earth. He screamed, louder than he had ever done so before in his entire life.

The demon closed his eyes, the boy's pitiful voice enveloping his essence. He shivered. Then, judging that Nathaniel was probably already quite close to the ground, he dived down beside him.

Still a few seconds before Nathaniel would smash his head open.

Bartimaeus plunged down beside him. "Come on," he purred, voice silky. "Beg for your life."

Nathaniel's voice hurt. His mind could not register what the demon had said.

Sighing, Bartimaeus grabbed the magician. Nathaniel had shut his eyes tight during the entire descent. Dreading the inevitable moment when his head would meet sharp contact with the ground and his head would snap.

But he was still alive. He slowly opened his eyes. Bartimaeus looked at him, amused. Blushing, Nathaniel scrambled from the demon's grasp and in succeeding, fell the rest of the way to the ground.

The fall was not enough to kill him, but was enough to daze him even further.

Nathaniel looked up fearfully, but the demon seemed lost in his memories.

The mist had cleared sometime through the night, though Nathaniel felt it had been no more than two hours since he had arrived in the cemetery. Yet dawn was already upon them. As if reading his mind, Bartimaeus said, "Time runs differently here."

The small rays of the sun began reaching towards them. They stared at the sky, at the pink clouds.

The master, hair disheveled and face flushed, the servant, a mild smile upon his face, his wings causing him to look almost angelic. How ironic, Nathaniel thought.

Bartimaeus turned and looked at him then. "Well, Nat- Mandrake, I've had a pleasant night with you. Probably the most amusing since the last one I shared with Ptolomy, though for different reasons." Here he smirked and gave a wink. Then, adopting a less amused expression, continued with "And no, I do not care what you bloody think."

Nathaniel opened his mouth in protest, then shut them again.

He watched the sky turn bluer for another minute, and, turning to Bartimaeus to tell him never to speak of this night again…

Saw his servant fading away.

He was slowly, ever so silently disappearing. "See you later, Nat. It is, after all, the start of a new day. Halloween and the night following it, has past. Without any bonds typing me to Earth, the Other Place draws me back."

Nathaniel said nothing.

Finally, after what felt like an eternity, Bartimaeus spoke again.

"Your hair's messed up."

With that, he disappeared completely, leaving Nathaniel scowling at the place where his servant had been standing just moments before.

I think this was a rather sweet ending. What about you? Please do review. It would make Bartimaeus/Nathaniel/your favorite Bartimaeus character happy…

Yep. It has ended. Dun-dun-dun-duuun…