Chapter Three: Hey, who invited you?

It was now an hour later. Dral and Ginger were seated at the kitchen table. Mom had gone to the hospital with Ashtah, leaving Dral and Ginger all by their lonesomes. Both just sat at the table and stared at each other. Dral's face was covered in dried and muddy streaks where she had wiped away her tears. Still letting out a quiet sniffle every now and again, she poked at the table, playing with some of the scratches and grooves from previous meals. Ginger just sat hunched over the table, looking very large in this small room. Any playing he did with the table would have just resulted in having to buy another new table. Would be the third this week alone. He sniffled quietly and hung his head. It was too quiet in the house.

"Darn it Ginger!" Dral banged her hand flat against the table. Ginger started at the noise. "Why did they have to go and do that?!" Dral burst into fresh wails of tears. Ginger tried to pat Dral on the back comfortingly. It was awkward, to say the least. Dral didn't even acknowledge the thumps on her back. She was too busy being angry.

"It's okay Dral" Ginger gave his sister a hug. "They're going to be okay. Didn't the hospital call to say so?" He was getting frantic now, Dral had yet to stop crying. His hug tightened.

"Ginger" Dral said softly. Ginger looked down. Dral was fanning her face and turning a soft shade of purple. "I can't breathe..." she gasped.

Whoops! Ginger dropped Dral. "Eh, hehe." he said, "Sorry.." He shuffled his feet. Looking around, he noticed what time it was. "Hey, I'm hungry! Let's eat something!" With that, he pounded off to the pantry.

Dral sat on the floor, gasping for breath. "Boy do I miss when he was a kou..." she thought for the umpteenth time that week. Pulling herself to her feet, she slowly followed Ginger to the pantry. Ginger was already swallowing half of the week's groceries. He gulped down a few more bags of sweeties (wrappers included) and gave a big sigh of contentment. Licking his fingers, he looked over at Dral. "Here, catch!" He tossed something at her.

Eyeing it cautiously, she looked into her hands. It was a rainbow negg. Jerking her head up, she looked at Ginger, speechless.

"I saved it for a rainy day" he shrugged. "I just thought it looked kinda rainy today, and you seem to need it more than me."

"O Ginger" Dral threw herself at her very large brother and hugged his leg. Sloppily, she took a huge bite out of the negg. "Yummy..." she said dreamily. After watching his sister nibble away at the negg, Ginger finally poked his sister in the arm. "Ya gonna finish that?" He had a hungry look in his eye.

Sighing, Dral handed Ginger the negg. His eyes lighting up, Ginger wolfed down the last of the rainbow negg. A smile slowly spread over his face. Belching once, he patted his stomach and wandered into the living room. Ginger watched him go, and before she could help it, a smile was on her face too.

"The big dummy," she thought to herself, "he did that on purpose." Bouncing after him, she walked into the living room. The shattered couch was still where they had left it. Had it really only been a couple of hours since they broke it? Brother and sister looked at each other and both began cleaning up the mess. Dral took smaller pieces to throw them away, when she noticed her brother was not bothering to do so. He was just eating the couch's remains. Sighing to herself, she tossed him a few throw pillows, which he cheerfully ate, and headed off to her room.

She was only halfway there when there was a knock at the door. Turning around she trotted back to the living room. Who could possibly be here at this time of the day? Not to mention, how? This area was blocked off so whatever it was that attacked Mom and Ashtah could be located without further incident. Dral looked over at Ginger. Ginger was still stuffing wood, nails and plastic into his mouth. He didn't hear the knock. Puzzled, Dral opened the door.

A green gelert stood on the step. He was grinning ear to ear, ears perked up and his tail going a-mile-a-minute. When Dral looked at him, the tail started going even faster. Dral could feel the breeze on her face.

"Uh, hello?" she said cautiously.

"Hello!" barked the gelert back. He sat down on the porch and cocked his head at her. "Aren't ya gonna let me in?" he asked.

"Um. No." replied Dral. She looked at this strange gelert with suspicion. She was still standing in the doorway, blocking the entrance with her body.

"Oh, okay" he said. He paused a moment. "Why not?"

This is insane thought Dral. "you don't live here." she said aloud.

The gelert perked up. "But I do! Let me just go get Mom!!" With that he turned on his heel and dashed off down the sidewalk. Dral stared at the retreating figure.

With a surreal feeling, she shut the door and leaned back against it. "Can this day get ANY weirder?" She thought to herself. Ginger stood looking over at her, strings hanging out of his mouth. As Dral looked at him, he sluped the strings into his mouth like spaghetti. Wiping the back of his hand across his mouth he looked from the door to his sister.

"Who was that?" he asked.

"Some VERY confused gelert who thinks he lives here." she replied.

"He smelled like the gelert Mom was protecting." Ginger shrugged and poked around on the floor looking for any errant couch pieces. He had done a remarkable job cleaning up the mess. Only bits of string and small piles of dust remained.

Dral stood up and stared at her brother. "He did?"

"Yeah" He grumped. "I should know, I carried him." He found a strip of wood under one of the other couches and proceeded to use the piece as a toothpick for his huge canines. Dral whirled around and jerked the door open. Mom stumbled into the room, her hand raised as if she was going to knock on the door.

"MOM!" Both cried in unison. They crowded around her, hugging and kissing her. Messily. Really Messily. Mom was gonna need a bath after this. After giving Mom her one-hundreth kiss, Dral realized there was the same gelert as before in the room with them. In fact, he was divided between jumping for joy with them and sniffing all around the living room. Dral stepped back.

"See! I told you I lived here!" the gelert ran up to Dral and gave her a sloppy kiss on the cheek. Then he was off, sniffing around chairs, tables and floor lamps. Dral and Ginger turned towards Mom. She gave them a huge smile. "You have a new brother!" she beamed.

"Yay!" shouted Ginger.

Dral fainted dead away.

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