“Henry, have you seen the remote?” Colin asked, venturing inside the study. The books had been all pulled out from the bookshelves, a lone baboon sitting innocently on the floor eating something that looked suspiciously like one of the girl’s Jane Austen books before an enormous rip sounded through the air.
At his arrival, the three children paused, two of the blond siblings turning a faint pink at being caught by their older brother, the last child still looking rather radiant at the book fight.
Books and papers were strewn all over the floor, several of the books sporting their empty pages without covers.
“Oh,” Modish said softly, the dark eyes underneath her messy bangs widening at the realization that Colin could and probably would tell on them.
“I told them that this wouldn’t be a good idea,” Alison whimpered softly from behind a violet cover of some children’s book.
Colin’s shoulders drooped. He was furious at them for breaking most of the hallway library but he couldn’t show it. He couldn’t be like their dad whenever he got mad. Henry had scared him just the other day with lashing out at Modish for something simple. He wouldn’t have his own temper flare up and cause him to think that was okay-even if his little brother was an idiot.
“Honestly, I don’t know why you two haven’t been shipped out just yet.”
Henry slightly brightened, knowing that Colin wasn’t furious with them.
“We will start cleaning up immediately!” he announced, scooping up pages and leaflets all over the room.
Resisting the urge to snort at the hilarious image of his two siblings and their friend picking up piles of useless books, Colin shook his head.
“Alison, go find Ollie and the other girl and have them repair the books with their magic. This will take more than glue and a good idea of where the books go to reorder all of these,” Colin sighed, his fists shaking slightly at how mad that Eshe girl would be. He could see her blazing blue eyes as she fought the urge not to lash out at the children. They didn’t need that either, he realized. Somewhere downstairs, he could hear the door swing open, the charms around the building singing out as if it was a doorbell. That would most likely be Eshe. He had barely come in on time to see this before she would make her way up there to get into her room.
Perhaps he said that a little too harshly but she would have to get over it unless she wanted to be yelled at by the head of the house. Even Carter would have been calmer than Eshe at that point. The kid loved books, alright.
“Stack the books and papers over in that corner and if Eshe walks in, pretend as if nothing as happened. She probably won’t even notice. I’ll go stall her for awhile.”
“What the-” Eshe began behind him.
Her tanned skin flushed darkly as she took in the corrupted hallway. Henry smiled weakly behind Colin’s shielding body, but it was obvious what had happened.
“Colin said not to tell you!” Modish announced, her little chapped lips spilling out the facts at the worst time.
“Did he now?” Eshe replied, her arms crossing her chest, and her intense, burning gaze finding his blank stare.
Great. Now he was in for it.