Thank you to all of my loyal readers who have read and commented on each part of my story. I love your constructive criticisms, it really helps me as a writer. At your request, I have updated quickly and this time it is longer. Please R&R. Thanks!!!
Lilly looked around the room, her eyes wide, and her mouth hanging open.
“Wow,” she said, spinning in circles. Everything was so big.
The man smiled. “I’m glad you like it, Lilly. By the way, my name is Artemis Fowl and this is my butler, Butler.” He gestured to the giant man, whose hand was still on the door handle.
“It’s nice to meet you,” Lilly said, nodding her head.
“Let me show you to your room,” Artemis said picking up Lilly’s suitcase. He led her to a spare bedroom across the hall from his study. He set her suitcase down on the bed. “I’ll leave you to unpack.” Artemis walked back down stairs and found Butler sitting on the couch with a concerned look on his face.
“Is everything alright?”
Butler grunted. “Are you sure that we can trust this girl, Artemis?”
Artemis chuckled and sat down next to him. “Yes, old friend.”
“Butler, you are retired. I am very happy that you decided to stick around and continue to be my butler but I am 36 years old now, I think I can take care of myself.” Artemis patted him on the shoulder. He got up and walked to his study. Artemis turned on his computer and pulled up his email. He had nine unread messages. Two were from work; he was now a legal businessman, ever since the Atlantic Complex incident. Artemis shivered at the memories. He quickly skimmed the emails and put them in a folder for later. Another email was from Minerva, continuing their argument on cold fusion. One email was from Juliet just updating him on how she was doing.
There were four emails from his mother. He chuckled. She was constantly emailing him whenever something new happened. One of them had pictures of the twins. They were so grown up now. Myles was married and Beckett was engaged. Artemis sighed. He wished he could visit them more often.
Artemis heard a knock on the door.
“Come in,” he said and Lilly entered the room. She quickly glanced around, admiring the woodcraft. Artemis chuckled again.
“Um, Mr. Fowl,” she started.
“Mr. Fowl is my father. Please, call me Artemis.”
“O-Okay, Artemis I would like to thank you properly for giving me shelter and I wanted to know what the rent is?”
“Oh no,” he smiled. “You don’t have to pay.”
“I have an idea,” she said, acting as if she hadn’t heard him. “I could cook for you!” She smiled excitedly.
“No I din’t…” he started.
“But I really want to do this,” Lilly insisted.
Artemis frowned. She’s as stubborn as I was when I was her age, he thought. His brow furrowed and he and Lilly stared intently at each other, neither one backing down. He finally sighed.
“Fine you can do the cooking in exchange for your room and board.”
Lilly smiled triumphantly. “I thought you might say that.” She strutted out of the room. Her head reappeared in the doorway.
“Oh and one more thing. Would it be okay if I explore the house tomorrow?” Lilly asked. Artemis nodded and she disappeared again. He heard her door close and he shook his head in disbelief. The resemblance was uncanny.
“That is exactly the same way I was when I was 16.” Artemis said, leaning back in his chair.
Lilly woke up the next morning full of energy. She jumped out of bed and ran to the bathroom. She quickly ran a brush through her hair. She threw on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt. Lilly ran down the stairs and into the kitchen. She pulled open the pantry door and gasped.
“There is so much food in here,” she said to herself. She grabbed the pancake mix off a shelf and walked over to the cupboards. She opened every single one trying to find a skillet. She stood back and bit her lip in frustration.
“Now, if I were a skillet,” she said. “Where the heck would I be?!” She looked around the room and noticed a small door in the corner. She walked over and opened it.
“Of course,” she said, pulling out a silver skillet. “The only place I don’t look.” She lit the gas stove and quickly prepared the batter. She poured perfect little circles onto the heated skillet.
Soon, a pile of golden brown pancakes sat on a plate next to the stove. Artemis walked in just as Lilly expertly flipped the last pancake in the air. It landed neatly on top of the stack. Lilly whipped around as he started to clap.
“Very impressive,” he said.
Lilly shrugged. “I figures since we both woke up later that we could have a brunch and then a big dinner.” She balanced the plate waiter style and walked into the dining room. The plates and silverware were already set on the table. Lilly looked at Artemis questioningly.
He smirked. “I said that you could cook, I never said anything about setting the table.” Lilly smiled. I think I’m going to like it here, she thought. Lilly ate quickly and waved goodbye to Artemis. She sprinted up the stairs and froze. She looked down the left and the right hallway, trying to decide which way to go first. She decided to explore the west wing first. She sauntered down the hallway, looking inside each room. Nothing was very interesting. There were only guest rooms, closets, and bathrooms.
She walked back towards the East wing. The same kind of rooms were there, then Lilly saw a big oak door at the end of a long hallway. She slowly approached it and gently turned the handle. The door swung open silently and Lilly gasped. Before her, shelves and shelves of books covered the walls. A thick cushy armchair sat in the center of the room with a small circular table and a lamp.
“Oh, I’m in heaven,” she said, running to the nearest wall and grabbing six books off the wall.
Artemis sat in his study, typing up a contract for his latest business deal. His stomach growled and he looked at the clock. 6:57. I wonder why Lilly hasn’t announced dinner yet? he thought. He got up and walked down to the kitchen. It was empty. She must still be exploring. Artemis slowly walked through the house, looking in each room. He arrived at the library to find the door slightly ajar. He peeked inside to see Lilly sitting in the armchair, her feet hanging over one arm of the chair. Books sat in piles around her and she was reading a psychology book.
“Having fun?” he asked. Lilly looked up from the book.
“Oh, Artemis.” She glanced at the wall clock. “Oh crap, I forgot to make dinner didn’t I? I’m sorry.” She jumped up and walked over to Artemis.
“I see you like to read.” Artemis said as they started to walk out of the library.
“That’s an understatement. I wasn’t very popular at school, so books were the only place I could escape to.”
“Why don’t we go out to eat, so we can finish our conversation,” Artemis said, as they arrived in the front room. Lilly nodded and they grabbed their coats off the rack as they stepped outside. A cold wind greeted them as they ran to Artemis’s Lexus. They hopped in and Artemis quickly started the car.
“What’s that?” Lilly said, pointing to a field surrounded by a fence.
“That’s where the horses graze in the spring.”
“Horses!” Lilly’s face lit up.
Artemis smiled. “I can take you out there to see them another day, when it’s not snowing.”
They parked in front of a small restaurant and hurried inside. The waitress seated them and took their drink orders.
“So,” Artemis said. “Tell me more about yourself.”
“Well, I am two I.Q. points shy from being an official genius. I hate sports, but I am very agile, for some reason odd. I love horses and video games. My favorite board game is chess and I’m pretty good at it, if I do say so myself.”
“Then maybe we could play sometime,” Artemis said. “I happen to be a chess master.”
“Your on,” Lilly said.
“Um, I am really good at learning different languages.”
“How many do you know?” Artemis asked. Lilly started to count on her fingers.
“12 and 1/2. Spanish, French, Japanese, Russian, Latin, Portuguese, Italian, English, Irish obviously, Hebrew, Arabic, Dutch, and I am in the middle of learning Chinese.”
“Quod est valde infigo. (That is very impressive.–Latin)” Artemis replied.
“Aliquam. (Thank you.—Latin) They went on talking like this, learning new things about each other, and comparing their skills for the rest of dinner. By the time they arrived back at the house, it was late. Lilly yawned and started up the stairs.
“Good night, Lilly,” Artemis said.
“Good night, Artemis. I hope you are ready for our chess match tomorrow,” she replied as she shut the door to her room.
“Don’t worry.” A vampire smile crossed his pale face. “I will be.”