He had hugged me back and since then he was the only one I ever really spoke to. He used to come in with small games or simply to talk. We worked together to help him overcome his speaking problems. Thalpius was incredibly happy - even for a Pixie - and never stopped smiling.
So I was surprised to see the worry on his face when I asked what he'd been calling me for. Thalpius was unsmiling for once and utterly terrified of something.
"Thalpius! What's wrong?" I demanded alarmed. Little Thalpius burst into tear in my arms. I carried him to the living room attempting to sooth him. I put him down on the sofa and crouched in front of him. When he calmed down some I spoke again.
"What is it?" I asked gently. Thalpius gulped a few times before he answered.
"It's Papa, he was attacked and hurt," Thalpius whispered. I could feel myself tense.
"Hurt how?" I insisted softly.
"His arm was slashed and a leg broken," came a calm, cold voice. I glared at her, remembering that the last time I saw her; she'd been trying to beat me up.
"Who did it?" I all but hissed.
"Your friend," Ice sneered. My brow furrowed in confusion and she laughed nastily, "The Fire Fox Demon? Remember? The one that illegally entered this world?" My face hardened.
"He'd need help," I accused and narrowed my eyes at her, "And it definately wasn't me because we're not friends anymore - as you know full well." Ice laughed again.
"I do know," she agreed and smiled angelically but it didn't work on her evil face. I took a deep breath, picked up a silent Thalpius and stalked out of the room. I passed my own room on the way to Father's. Had Mazany known how close he'd been to my own bedroom? I bet he hadn't thought about it.
I shifted Thalpius's weight so I could hold him with one arm and knock gently on Father's bedroom door with the other. Ava opened it, looking tired.
"Would you like me to take care of Thalpius?" I asked quietly. Ava smiled in relief and gratitude.
"Yes, please, Zuri," Ava breathed.
"How is he?" I inquired and her face tensed.
"Hurting," she answered briefly, "But he'll live." I nodded and walked away at the same time she shut the door. I carried Thalpius to my room and dropped him on my bed. I quickly showered and changed my clothes.Thalpius trotted along behind me as I headed to the kitchen. We were given food and I regained my strength.
I slipped back up to my room but Thalpius trailed along. He shut the door and locked it. Then he turned to face me with an uncharacteristically grim face.
"You're going back to that world aren't you?" He said. I looked him straight in the eye and nodded. He knew so I didn't have to be discreet. I grabbed a bag and started to shove as many of my vials in there as possible. I put some food in there, another set of clothes and (reluctantly) a small dagger.
"Can I come?" Thalpius pleaded. I groaned.
"It isn't safe," I told him.
"Please?" He begged. I got devious.
"Ask your mother. If she says it's OK then fine, come. If she says no then you're staying with no arguements."