Rowel sat staring at the girl lying on his couch fast asleep. When he had seen that she had fallen asleep on the trip from Earth he couldn’t bare to wake her. Alita had been a very big help so far while Adan and Sira had made it very clear that they wanted nothing to do with the girl and had pretty much left as soon as they had returned to Imaginess. It had quickly been decided that Linda would stay at Rowel’s house. His parents were much more understanding about such things while even though Alita’s father might understand he would never agree to let her stay. There were too many risks involved and he couldn’t afford to harbor an alien. Alita had helped him to get her into his hover car and had even gone with him to make sure she was comfortable in his house.
“Man she is really out.” Alita commented when they had gotten Linda into the house and she still hadn’t moved
“We probably freaked her out pretty good.” Alita just nodded then she looked at her watch and gasped.
“Oh my, I’m late I need to get home before my dad gets home and realizes I’m not home. I’ll see if I can get over here tomorrow.”
Rowel sat staring at her now waiting for his mother to get home from where ever she disappeared to with his two younger sisters. He stood up and went into the kitchen he grabbed a flower-nut off the counter and crushed the fragile shell in his fingers. He picked up the news-screen which was Imaginess’s newspaper but instead of being on paper it was on a flat touch-screen. He scanned through the headlines as he pulled the sweet flower out of its shell and plopped it in his mouth. He licked his lips as it melted in his mouth and tapped on one of the headlines as he reached for another one.
The article was about the funeral procession that had gone to earth that day. Telling the story about his aunt and uncle for about the millionth time in his 18 years. He sighed. Why couldn’t they just leave Aunt Kay alone? She was dead why did they have to keep reminding him of that fact. Kay had been his favorite aunt he had only been three when she had died but he remembered it almost as clearly as if it had been yesterday. He still had dreams about those times sometimes. He remembered his mother taking him and Sira, who had been six at the time, down to visit Aunt Kay right after his cousin Leena had been born. “She likes you.” Aunt Kay had said to him as he held her and she looked at him with her big glittering eyes. He remembered smiling down at her and grabbing her little fingers as she cooed quietly in his arms. That was the first and last time he had ever seen her.
He had never told his parents how much his aunt and uncle’s death had affected him and they assumed that he didn’t remember them well enough for it to effect him. They had worried more about Sira in the years following their death because she was older when it was him they should have worried about.
A new museum had opened up in the city a couple years ago and he had refused to go because he had heard of a display that had been dedicated to his aunt and uncle and he hadn’t the courage to face what had happened to them.
Rowel sighed and placed the news-screen back on the counter and grabbed a hand-full of flower-nuts as he went back into the living room. The girl was still sleeping as he sat down across from her. The hair that had covered most of his face since he had met her had slid slightly and something near the corner of her right eye caught his attention. He leaned forward and brushed the remaining hair away from her face. His heart jumped into his throat at the sight of the ugly scar running across her face. Her eyes opened then and he jumped back slightly in surprise. It took her a second to realize what he had been staring at and she quickly covered herself with her hair as she sat up and looked at him angrily.
“I-I-I’m sorry. I didn’t realize…how’d it happen?”
She relaxed slightly then and looked around her. “Where am I?”
“This is my house…well my family’s house anyway. Alita and I brought you here. You didn’t wake up when we landed and neither of us wanted to wake you.” He stood up then and motioned in the direction of the kitchen. “You want something to eat? We have some flower-nuts that my little sister just picked yesterday.
“What’s a flower-nut?”
“Here come try one their really good.”
Linda followed him into the kitchen where he showed her how to break the shell and eat the flower inside.
“MMM this is really good.” She said as she grabbed another one from the bowl he had placed in front of her. It tastes kind of like raspberry and watermelon wrapped all in one.”
He smiled at her. He liked the way she smiled and talked and maybe just maybe he thought she was beautiful. Could it be that he was falling for a human girl?