Authors Note: I got the chapters to work! I am sorry shaadia, as you said that it was actually easier to read without them. Also, thank you Falcon for welcoming me to the site! Thank you for your patience and please enjoy the story!
Chapter 1: Oblivious
“…and they lived happily ever after.” Artemis shut the book and looked at Myles and Beckett; they were both staring at him oddly. He blinked, and then smiled, “What?”
“So… that’s it?” Beckett said, rapping his arms around his knees and tucking then under his chin.
“The End.” Artemis replied gaily, smiling again and turning the book over. He got up, balanced on one foot to put the book on a top shelf, and gave a little wave to his brothers before quitting the room. “Night!”
Myles looked over at Beckett and surveyed him a moment “There is somethin’ wrong with Arty.”
Beckett hugged his Knees closer to his chest and looked over at the shelf where Artemis had left the book. The fairy tale looked out of place among Artemis’ normal selection of literature for his brothers.
I didn’t know I’d miss his lec-turs.” said Beckett. “Let’s go an ask mum and dad wats the matter with ‘im.” Myles nodded and slipped off the bed. They both tip toed passed Artemis’ door and then ran up the hall to Mr. and Mrs. Fowl’s room.
“Hmmm?” was the reply to their light knocking. A bleary eyed Mrs. Fowl then opened the door. “Boys!” She said, amused, shaking her head. “What are you doing out of bed?”
“We wana know wats wrong with Arty.” Myles pouted; Beckett had a similar look on his face.
Angeline Fowl’s face, however, took on a confused smile. “What do you mean there’s something wrong with Arty?” She said, bending down to face them.
“He’s been acting really weird lately.” said Beckett.
“Ya, you should have hear-ed him read to us this night and last.” Myles added.
“He could hardly do it as well as us!”
“-and I never thought I’d miss his lec-turs.”
“Oh boys!” Mrs. Fowl was suddenly worried. She looked over at Artemis’ room as she ushered the twins to bed, then rushed back to wake her husband.
“What?” He said sleepily as Angeline shook him. He came awake at registering the worry on her face. “What’s the matter?”
“Myles and Beckett just came to the door saying somethin’s wrong with Artemis.” Mr. Fowl sat up at these words.
“Is he sick?” He asked.
“That’s not what it sounded like.” Angeline thought allowed.
“You mean you didn’t go in his room?”
“No, should I?” Mrs. Fowl asked.
“Yes, you might as well wake him.” Artemis Sr. slipped out of bed. “Or should I go?”
“No, I’ll see what’s wrong.”
Knocking, Angeline Fowl opened her son’s door. He looked around.
Artemis wasn’t in bed yet, he was sitting in a chair with a book in his lap, drumming his fingers lightly on the chair’s arm. Tap, Tap, Tap, Swipe, Tap, Tap, Tap, Swipe…
“Mother?” Artemis set the book down, getting up. “Is some-?”
“Are you all right Arty?” Angeline couldn’t be certain in the lighting, but Artemis’ eyes looked dilated. He had an air of nervousness about him as well.
Mr. and Mrs. Fowl had been on a business trip the last half-a-fortnight, and had gone to bed almost as soon as they had come through the door that evening, so they hadn’t spoken to their eldest son that week other than a quick, ‘Hello-Goodnight,’ though he hadn’t seemed this way earlier. Butler had been off too, so maybe Artemis was just tired from having had to take care of his brothers alone.
“Yes, w-why would you s-suggest otherwise?” Angeline was surprised at her son’s stuttered reply. It didn’t sound as though he was hiding something, Artemis could lie seamlessly, no it actually sounded as if he were having trouble speaking. He, himself, didn’t seem to see it though, because he went on sounding confident, or at least, as confident as someone can sound wile stuttering their speech. Angeline then saw that was she had originally taken to be nervousness was actually a slight trembling, he didn’t seem nervous at all, quite the contrary, he seemed at ease.
Assuring her son that she must have been mistaken, Angeline left the room, and walked back to her bed.
“Was anything the matter?” inquired Artemis Sr. who was waiting for her.
“I-” She took a quick breath, “There is something wrong with Artemis.” Her husband frowned.
“Is he sick?”
“No.” She shook her head, “There’s just something different, wrong about him, I can’t place it.” She laid her head on the pillow and looked up at Mr. Fowl. “He was – stuttering, and, there was something else wrong too but I can’t place it. He doesn’t seem to see anything unusual, he seemed oblivious.”
“Oblivious? That’s not a word often used to describe Artemis.” Mr. Fowl inquired.
“No, no it isn’t. It’s the only word that fits at the moment though.”
In fact oblivious was not a word that had ever been used to describe Artemis Fowl the Second. So why was it being used now?