Spook sank into a kitchen chair, picturing her pen friend’s grief. In her mind’s eye, she could almost see Anna burying her face in her hands.
No, she decided. Anna is far stronger than that. She would fight back, not allow herself to be overcome with emotions. This thought gave her new hope, and she looked up.
“Are the Telcontar with her now?” she asked, addressing Moonwalker, who stood like a shadow beside the door.
“We think so, yes. But we also know that she is in the company of a ghost, who is training her to use her new Gifts.” Spook nodded. If she was training, that would explain why Anna had not talked to her in so long.
“Is that all?” she said, getting up. Although she appeared rude and impatient, Spook was, in fact, just tired, confused, and worried about her friend.
“Yes, that’s all we know,” said Elorithryn, smiling sympathetically. “You’d better get up to bed, and we promise we’ll tell you as soon as we know anything else!” Spook smiled. Her Elders were much more understanding than some of her friends’. She was glad, once again, that she had ended up with Elorithryn and Moonwalker, as opposed to, say Lyre and Elzu. They were very friendly people, if a little intimidating, especially the way that they dominated the planet so spectacularly.
For Spook’s planet was a world built on stories, where every person was an author and everyone else a character. Spook sometimes found it hard to get her head around the fact that her parents were in fact writing what was about to happen on the Southern Moon, and the fact that her friend Jeth had parents who were top-rated and extremely talented. The planet was named Protagonize, which had made Anna laugh. She had told Spook that she knew of a website called Protagonize, which was a writer’s community.
I’m sure you’d love it, she had written. You should sign up. I’m on there, and so are two of my friends.
Spook bid her Elders goodnight and went upstairs, thinking of Anna. What would it be like to find out that one was part fairy? She imagined the sudden loneliness, the feeling of betrayal. She imagined how Anna must be feeling broken inside, how she must hate her foster parents for not telling her.
I guess she’s got it a lot worse than most of us. Not only has she found out she’s adopted; she also has to get to grips with being another species. Spook grinned, but it faded quickly. She would love to be of another race - the Protagonists were so boring, even though they could shape shift. And we have to learn Latin, she added. That was a personal grievance of hers - she just did not see the point.
“Don’t stay up too late,” called Moonwalker from the kitchen. “Don’t forget you’ve got Learning tomorrow!” Spook groaned. She had Latin tomorrow - another problem.
I mean, it’s not even a dead language from our own planet! Her mental thoughts were so strong that Elorithryn picked up on them.
“Spook!” she growled warningly. “Latin is good for you!”
“Yeah, right,” muttered Spook. “In the same way that standing outside in the freezing rain is? In the same way that sleeping on a hard floor, owning nothing but a small bowl and dressing in rags is good for you?”
Elorithryn ignored these mutinous mutterings.
“Get you to bed,” was all she said. “You need it, by the sounds of things!”
“I’m going, I’m going!” replied Spook, hurriedly. “Of course,” she added under her breath, because in many ways Spook was just like a teenager, despite being another species.