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Thursday's Child: When Siblings Collide
tapestry jacket
Here ends Thursday's Child. While this was the first story I came up with for Psychopomp, wanting to see if Nia could get some comfort in her desperately lonely and unstable life despite being very guilty of dire misdeeds, this wouldn't be the first chronologically so there probably will be canon-weirdness to iron out if I turn this into a full series. This would still be in the early parts though.

Nia came back six minutes later. She nearly dropped her literal and figurative bundles when Duffy rose up to greet her and then made himself violently ill again. I held up a hand to stop her from panicking.
“Too much hair of the dog, no faerie food.”
“Hullo Nia. Hit me if you like.” Macduff offered cheerily.
Would that help him?
“No, it won’t help him but may help you teach him a lesson.”
“I am…terrible aren’t I?” Duffy asked Nia as he curled back into the couch.
His sister shook her head, smiling. He wagged a finger. “Don’t tolerate it, you deserve better. See, big sisters are allowed to hit their brothers for …acting up, such as when they leave them waiting …and then go to a party without a single sorry…and getting blotted. I tried to find your place… your new one… but I was so glad you weren’t there. That’s not a home. Can they let you live somewhere else? I thought they were supposed to keep you safe, no matter what. Li-.”
I think everyone was relieved he drifted off. I turned back to his sister and opened the box.
“Thank you for taking the scarf. Now, here.” She warily placed her treasures inside; I promptly locked it, put the key on a red ribbon and tied it around her neck. “Tuck that deep into your collar for me, my dear. Lock and key. They will be safe. No one can take them from you. You can hold them during sessions. I recommend it. You can run into my office and demand them- whenever you want. When you get a safe place to live, take the box with you. I can’t offer you a place in my house, sadly, but I’ll help you look. I don’t care how strong you are or how hard you push yourself, this living arrangement will kill you one way or another. I’m the only dead person allowed in my office.”
I’ll need another one. He’s going to get married one day and have children. They’ll need him. He can’t be worrying about me too, but I’ll always worry about him.
“Do you think Macduff wouldn’t have you as part of his family?”
Her eyes widened and then glanced away. No wife worth him would ever let me be around their children. I could influence them, make them just like me.
“Would he really marry anyone who believed that was a bad thing?”
He won’t find anyone if he has me attached to him.
“I don’t know if he’s looking to marry anyone yet.”
Sometimes I think I want that, him not marrying, but he’ll end up hating me. Anyone around me long enough will. It’s going to happen. He’ll hate me, leave me or he’ll die. Or all of them.
I was going to exhume whoever made her believe that, kill the bastard again and take a shit on his ribcage.
“All right. I don’t know for sure who Macduff would or would not marry, but he considers you important. He was going to offer you to live with him.”
He’s sweet. And drunk.
“Not particularly the first one, he threw up in my wastepaper basket.”
I’ll get him a pail-
“That doesn’t matter. He called you his big sister, and he’s not just saying that because you’ve called him your little brother so many times- though he’s not smaller than you.”
He’s narrower.
“No more insulting yourself. That counts as hurting yourself and you’re not to do that anymore.” She scowled as You aren’t the boss of my thoughts shouted in her head. “You keep making that face at me, the wind will change and you’ll be stuck like poor Richard.”
On that note, she left my office laughing, looking through the small stack of papers assigned to her and asking Rosalie for information and the lads if they needed help.
She could be happier living in my place. The fact that it would infuriate Dick would be both entertaining and awful. But I have an employer of my own who told me some months ago that it would work out very badly for Lavinia, and she tends to be always right. She didn’t specify why, but implied it had nothing to do with whether I was a cad or not.
I re-read the number of pounds Nia paid for renting that carton the parole sector claimed was a room, and picked the newspaper up again. Any number less than that would be a start. I may even be able to find a place big enough so Lavinia could take back everything she tried to store, sell or give away.
I’d already bought back the book she’d sold very unwillingly. What sort of man would I be to force her take it back to a place that someone could break into to steal it, or worse, tear it apart? Luckily Rosalie had suggested the book store belonging to Violette’s living brother Ferdinand- I was morally obliged not to haggle, but he had given Lavinia a fair price. He was honest enough to run the calculations in his head as I made the purchase. Given that neither of them knew how they were connected, it seems Ferdy has respect for himself, his business and his customers, however strange. That deserves all of the profit he made, mild as it was. Imagine if he knew Nia was training his late ‘cry-baby’ sister in defending herself and others.
When I find her a new place, I was going to make sure the front page in that beloved tome got dedications all over it. It should never have been blank for so long.


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