"At least you have a family to have issues with."
I heard a mutter off to my left, in the direction of the dragon.
"Llewellyn, would you like to share?" I commented.
Up to this point the only interaction he'd had with the rest of the group, was an attempt to turn Reaper into a standing rib roast.
"Huh ... wha ... ?
The snort and wide eyed surprise on his scaly face led me to believe he'd been napping. I looked at Moonwalker and raised a questioning eyebrow. She blushed and shook her head. She hadn't spoken, either.
Llewellyn looked down at his folded hands, and muttered for a moment. He bent over and put something on the floor. My breath caught in my throat in shock, as a human form took shape out of apparently nothing at all. A boy somewhere in his teens finally materialized fully before us.
"Hi. I'm Galen." He grinned shyly at me. "I'm a shape shifter, and I hitchhiked in on Lllewellyn as a gnat. I didn't want to come at all, but Llew talked me into it. I was going to stay a silent observer until that guy mentioned families." The lad nodded in Shard's direction.
"I see. Welcome, Galen. Is there something you would like to share about families?" I asked him.
He blushed pink and stuttered a bit. He obviously wasn't used to being the centre of attention, unless it was in a bad way, like being used as a football by the Drael.
"Ummm I just meant that maybe even a bad family is better than none at all. I was ripped away from a loving home, to a place where nobody looked like me, or talked like me, or knew anything about me. I didn't even know I had special abilities until a bad wizard restored them just long enough for the Van Helsings to experiment on me."
"Would you really want a brother who betrayed you, and tried to kill you?"
That comment came from Shard, who had stepped forward to get a good look at this new curiosity.
"Um ... I ..."
The poor guy was at a loss for words, until Llewllyn stood beside him and spread a leathery wing over Galen's shoulder. His friend's presence gave Galen courage, and he tried again.
"No, I guess I wouldn't want that kind of a brother, but at least you knew who you were, what you were, and how you fit into your own little universe. I didn't know much about my family or myself at all, until Llewellyn and I escaped to Peace Island."
"Well, at least you knew your parents liked you at some point, when you were little, before you were ... taken."
That grumble came from Alex, then others joined in. The conversations started out slowly, but soon the characters were talking animatedly among themselves, trying to outdo each other as to whose family was worse.
Some progress was being made, they were talking, airing their greivances, getting the bad shit out, getting rid of the bits they hadn't already talked about. It was an ear splitting bedlam, but I'd had my office sound proofed years ago, just for this sort of reason.