Adam didn't look up from his desk as he responded to the knock at his door.

“Come in,” he called. He held up his hand as Richard entered to prevent him from interrupting. He finished reading the report in front of him then looked up at his guest. “Richard, I hoped you'd be back today. How was Naples?”

“Good. Dad's still there; he's coming back in a couple of days.” Richard sat down as Adam gestured to a chair by the desk. Adam subjected Richard to his intense gaze.

“Your thoughts are not of Naples, are they? Tell me what is bothering you.”

Richard sighed and ran his hand through his dark hair. “It's Eve. And Mom. But mostly Eve.”

“Yes. She sees further than the rest of us, but sometimes she finds it too… compelling… to focus on the darkness,” Adam sat back in his chair. “I'm afraid that until we can fully banish the darkness, she will see it more clearly than we do.”

“I just feel so useless!”

Adam got up and motioned for Richard to follow him to the sitting room next door.

“Care for a drink?” Adam asked, already pouring two glasses of sherry. Richard took the proffered glass and took a seat next to the fireplace. Even in the light of the fire, the glow radiating from Adam was apparent. The two men sat in silence for some time before Adam spoke.

“Richard, you are far from useless. You have always been Eve's protector, even before you were Illuminated.”

Richard grimaced, as he remembered how he had tried to stop his sister from finding Adam.

“There is no shame in acting with good intentions,” Adam continued, knowing what his friend was thinking. “There would only have been guilt had you turned from the Light, and I am glad that you did not.” Richard sipped his drink in silence, knowing that he had no need to explain his thoughts or feelings when he was with Adam.

“Don't give up hope with your mother. You think that Eve has given up hope, but she knows there is still some chance. Have faith.” Adam studied Richard: his troubled face, the slightly quivering leg, one hand twirling his glass, the other tapping nervously on the arm of the chair. Adam was reminded of Eve a few months back, when the Light had been taken from her. He knew Richard had helped her get through that episode; he had supported and believed in her at that crucial time. Eve had always had her older brother to rely on, but without their parents, who did Richard have? He leant forward and stilled Richard's trembling leg with his firm but gentle hand.

“Richard, it will be all right. Trust me.” He looked into Richard's eyes, and knew that he could help all of his new family, and not just Eve.

fic/family.txt · Last modified: 2010/03/09 16:17 by gareth
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