They’re all still lying in bed when I get back. The twins have squeezed closer together than when I left them. Olinda’s arms are wrapped protectively around Odiana.
Odiana’s eyes are wide open, watching me sneak into the room.
I’ve told them time and time again that they’re safe here, but they all still cling together. Everything that’s been going on has been hard on them.
But hopefully, they will take my news better than Loxy did.
Hemlock slides off the edge of the bed and scurries over to me. Her red hair sticks out in every direction, and she appears determined. “Where’d you go? We all woke up and you were gone."
She does her best to not look concerned. Hemlock hated to show any kind of weakness. I wonder if the thinks she can take Faylinn’s place as the third in charge.
The other girls don’t try to be subtle while they watch me. I lock the door and all at once my sisters form a circle on the floor.
They stare at me expectantly as I lower myself to the empty space they left me.
“Loxy and I went to a meeting with the green fairies. They plan to take the forest back for us.”
Lily Belle, the smallest of all of us nudges Chanter, who, as she usually is these days, is wiping tears from her eyes. “We can all go home.”
“But our home burned, Lily Belle.” Hemlock barely contains her anger. “There’s nothing left to go back to.” I wish Hemlock considered anger a weakness.
Lunette is unable to keep tears from streaming down her face and getting caught into her straw-colored hair.
Gentle, always eager to offer kind words, glares at Hemlock. “Don’t say that. We can grow new trees.”
“Or we could find a new forest. You know, one that isn’t so close to the fire fairies’ that obviously hate us.” Olinda laughs softly. Her low voice causes Oak’s red eyes to flash with fury.
“But we all grew up there, Oli. Where else do we have to go?”
Chanter’s white hair billows around her. “If we move away from the fire fairies, we’ll never see Faylinn again.”
“We won’t see her again anyway, Chanter, she can’t come back after abandoning us.” I didn’t mean to get involved in the argument, but I don’t want them getting their hopes up.
Hemlock looks up at me, curiosity shining in her eyes.
“What do you mean?”
Sighing, I told them what really happened to Mother. And how Faylinn didn’t believe what had happened and went out to prove Loxy wrong. For whatever reason, I left out Loxy’s involvement.
I decided not to blame her anymore. She always meant well. Or if she didn’t I don’t want her on my bad side.
They stare at me before the door swings open to reveal Loxy. She pauses, surprised to find us all on the floor, and with more than a couple of the girls crying.
But then she clears her throat and announces.
“We need to talk.”
“We have been. I’ve told them everything.”
She nods in thanks and squats next to me. “In a couple days most of the green fairies are leaving to get our forest back. Beetle said they’d send someone here to look after us."
She shudders at the thought. “But they don’t want us to go too far from this house for a while.”