Camp NaNoWriMo Part 4
“What are you doing here?” she asked once Darius was out of earshot.
“I can ask the same of you, Lily,” her uncle teased.
She frowned, but didn’t rise to the bait. There were more important things to talk about. “The main house was attacked.”
Her uncle’s smile dimmed.
“Who attacked? Where’s everyone else?”
“I don’t know. We split up.”
“When did this happen?”
“Early this morning.”
Her uncle looked at her. “No wonder you look so tired. Take a nap. I’ll figure something out.” He grinned. “Lily.”
Now that her uncle was involved, she could relax.
“It’s better than ‘Walter’,” she shot back.
“Walter is a great name. You just have no taste.” Done with her wounds, her uncle squirted hand sanitizer into his palm and rubbed his hands together.
“It sounds like ‘warts’.”
Her uncle’s face twitched. He reached up and pinched her cheeks.
“Walter is a great name,” he repeated with his favourite ‘danger incoming’ smile.
Repetition had dulled its effect on her. “Wart face.”
They glared at each other. One smiling, one scowling, both equally deadly.
“… What are you doing?” Darius asked.
“Bonding,” her uncle said.
“Bonding,” Darius repeated like he couldn’t believe what he was saying.
“It’s great. You should try it some time. Breaks the ice 10 out of 10.”
She pinched her uncle’s cheeks even harder. He returned the favour.
“I brought food. Hungry?”
She released her uncle and grabbed a bun off the plate. The crust crinkled delightfully under her fingers, but there was one more thing she could do to make the bun even better. She pulled the squishy inside out and offered it to her uncle in a familiar trade.
“Are you sure you don’t know each other?”
She munched her way through most of the offered food, not realising how hungry she had been until she started eating. The two men left her to her food in favour of their own conversation.
“Don’t worry. I can take care of her. Go finish your run,” her uncle said.
“I don’t mind missing one day,” Darius said.
Her uncle placed a hand on Darius’ shoulder and smiled. “I insist. Your health is important. Go.”
Eventually, Darius left, leaving the two of them alone in the house.
“And you.” Her uncle turned to her. “Are taking a nap, Lily. Let me handle things.”
She wasn’t a little kid anymore, but she was tired. Her uncle was family. She could trust him. Even if he had disappeared without warning in the past.
Muffling her anxious thoughts, she made herself comfortable on the couch and slept.
When she woke up, it was to a blade at her neck.