Sister

Part 1

by Alicia (aisumitsukai at home.com)
1/25/02; Revised 2/16/03

Chapter One: Innocent until proven guilty.

2105
Fowl Manor, Ireland

Artemis Fowl glowered down at Captain Short. "And so you expect me to help?"

Holly was in no better a mood than Artemis. "Yes! You little Mud worm, yes! It's your fault we're in this mess! Don't you care? This girl is our last chance!"

"How is she your last chance? You don't even know who she is!! She could be dead for all you know. And really even if I DO find her, who says she'll help, and who says she'll even be useful if she does help? I'm not going to have any thing to do with this. Besides, how many times do I have to tell you? I didnít sell anyone any of Foalyís precious codes."

"Yeah, sure, Fowl. 'Cause I really believe you. Who else could possibly know enough about Foalyís system to get a hold of his access codes? Who, for that matter, would even know about Foalyís system? So either you sold them or you sold information about them."

"Look, Holly, I didnít sell anybody anything. Now, as stimulating as this conversation is, I have better things to do with my time."

"Fowl! There are Goblins running around New London!"

"Look, Holly, Iíll think about it. Maybe thatíll show you I had nothing to do with it. Though I still donít understand why-"

"It doesnít matter. Iíll be back in three days." And, without so much as a Ďthank you for the teaí, Holly let herself out.

**********

Holly used to love flying. She still did, technically; the only thing was that the scenery had changed. The mud people had ruined the Emerald Isle, huge ugly clots of concrete and metal had crawled out over more then eighty percent of the beautiful little Island. Holly spat in disgust.

**********

Hurriedly, Holly took off her Hummingbirds and leapt into her pod. Buckling in and turning on the radio, she was greeted by Foaly.

"Hello, Holly. How are you? Did you get there okay? No run-ins with Italian trolls? Didnít drink any poisoned tea or anything? What did Fowl say?"

"Fine, yes, no, no. Heíll think about it. "

"Well, I'm fine too, seeing as you asked. Bother Fowl. He knew what would happen if he sold those codes to the Goblins. And look! Happy day, we have Goblins running around aboveground! Everywhere. Like swear toads!"

Holly smiled, though Foaly couldnít see it with the resolution on the pod screen. "He says he didnít sell them. Says he doesnít know anything about it. And you know, after the whole Koboi thing...."

"Of course he 'didnít' sell them. What else is he going to say? Anyways, I donít trust this line so Iíll talk to you when you get here."

"Foaly, you donít trust any line."

Operations Room,
LEP Headquarters, The Haven

Foaly frowned at his reflection in the computer screen. There was more here then Commander Root insisted there was. Root didnít connect stolen faery access codes, Goblins aboveground and the complete shutting down of Foalyís system to Artemis Fowl. Of course, after the Koboi thing, there was no reason to.

But who else could it be? The Goblins had downed the Faeries' entire underground world with the press of a single (and probably large and red) button. Although Foaly seriously doubted they knew that.

In fact, he seriously doubted that the Goblins would even have thought of buying those access codes. Goblins werenít the brightest of creatures. There had to be somebody behind all this. But who would want Goblins running around on the surface? And why? It didnít appear to be profitable to Fowl, except the money for the codes, and that wouldnít cover the loses he would probably suffer once the Mud people realised that the Goblins werenít kids in Hallows Eve costumes. Yay. Cross-species war. Besides, Artemis had matured, Foaly thought that heíd grown out of his ĎI donít care about the worldí phase. Or at least, so he liked to hope.

The shutting of the Opsí door cut his train of thought short. Foaly glanced over at Holly, whoíd made herself at home on a workbench.

"You sure you want to do this, Holly?"

Holly glanced up at her friend. "Yes. We need that girl."

"Right. And I suppose I shouldnít bother to suggest someone else go." Foaly swivelled his chair around to face her.

"No. Nobody else can do this. Nobody else can know. You know what would happen if anybody found out that I'm part human! Only Artemis can know."

Technically, Foaly knew he should find Hollyís trust in Artemis over her background ridiculous, but he smiled to himself and thought: What they donít know canít hurt them.

"By the way, Foaly, how old is Fowl?"

"Ah..." Foaly clicked a link on the plasma screen. "Heís a hundred and four. Why?"

"Are you sure?" Hollyís eyebrows furrowed.

"Of course Iím sure. When am I ever wrong?" Foaly responded with feigned incredulousness.

"Or modest, for that matter? Anyways, I know this sounds ridiculous, he can't possibly be a hundred and four. More like twenty-four. Itís like he has faery blood in him, or he ages really, really well."

Foaly nodded sagely. "Like Bilbo?"

"Yeah. Like Bilbo."

The two sat in silence for a moment before Holly piped up. "Foaly, do you think heíll help us?"

"Do you?"

"Yeah."

"Why?"

"Gut feeling. No matter how much I want to punch his arrogant little face in, I think he still has a bit of good left. After all, he does grow organic vegetables."

"Well, if you think heíll help us, then heíll help us."

"Why?"

"Gut feeling."

On to Part 2!

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