Orb's Year 941
Henry Fischer came home from the Abbey after he'd received a note from Fatima. At first he'd ignored it, not wanting to see his old love. But, she'd been insistent that there was something she'd needed to talk to him about.
Finally, he relented, part of him imagining that she would tell him that she still loved him - the other part scared that she would tell him she was getting betrothed to his jackal of a brother.
What he heard stunned him.Abbey, 940)
Henry shoved his brother again. "Fatima! You fed her lies about me!"
Irving crossed his arms. "I did not! I was genuinely worried..." he said stubbornly. "It's not my fault she fell in love with me!"
"She doesn't love you! She despises you! You lied to her and you lied to me! Pretending that you were her beau!"
Irving angrily shoved his brother back. "She does love me! She DOES!"
"BOYS! Enough!" their father, Sheldon boomed from the doorway. Henry glanced over and saw his mother fighting tears behind their father. "Inside! Now!"
It was time for explanations...
"I was! She loves me!" Irving said desperately.
Henry said dispassionately. "No she doesn't! She said you were just friends. He tried to kiss her and she slapped him." Cursed Orb, Irving had created a mess. He didn't know what was real and what was imagined anymore!
Irving wore a mulish expression, refusing to say anything.
Irving jumped up angrily. "Henry! Henry! Henry! Everyone just cares about Henry! I know when I'm not wanted!"
"Irving!" Nicole called out, "We do care! We do love you! Come back!"
But many nights passed and Irving did not return.
Sheldon shook his head. "Jealousy can do funny things to a heart," he suggested.
"I heard that he was taken in at the Grotto. Hopefully he'll find happiness there..." George added.
Orb's Year 942
But, the wolf only sniffed at his brother and then sat back on her haunches.
"Henry assures me that Wolfie is perfectly tame," Kitty assured her mother-in-law.
"Can I, Papa? Can I?!" Kurt asked excitedly. "I'll be ever so good!"
In a short time, they approached the far end of the pond. "Papa? What's wrong with Grandpa?" Kurt asked with a wobbly voice.
George looked up and saw Sheldon lying on the ground, the pole resting inches from his fingertips.
George dropped to his knees beside his father, gently shaking him and then feeling for a pulse.
Rest in Peace Sheldon Fischer, Orb's Years 888-943
Orb's Year 944
He bounced Libby on his hip down the stairs and then set her down to help prepare breakfast.
"Come on Kurt. Let's see to your schoolwork before you begin playing too much this morning!" George said, leading his son out the door.
"After your work is complete you can go play with the pups," his father said, calling Kurt's attention back to his letters.
George laughed. "They're growing puppies! Of course they'll want to play!"
Kurt erased the mark he'd made. "Why doesn't Jessica have to do her work!" he asked, glancing towards the house. "She gets to play with Wren!"
Jessica glanced around the yard and saw that her father and brother were distracted with Kurt's homework. Feeling bold, she leaned forward and kissed Wren sweetly on the lips.
"What was that for?!" Wren asked with a huge smile.
Jessica shrugged, blushing. "Just because," she said shyly.
Wren stepped closer and frowned when Jessica skipped away. "Just because why?" he asked, following after her like the Pied Piper.
Reaching out, Wren grabbed her hand in his own. "When can I see you again?" he asked.
Jessica glanced back at her father and then back at Wren. "Tomorrow," she said hopefully. "Come back tomorrow!"
Royale Guard, 943)
Nicole shook her head sadly. She had no answers for her son.
Now that he was older, he also couldn't help wondering if Irving hadn't lied to him and Fatima, whether they would've been able to work their differences out.
Sadly he shook his head. There was no point in wondering what could've been. His brother and his childhood love were lost to him. It was time to move on...