Secret Children 9: Fractured Crystal

By Desert Mouse

Crystal pulled the blanket over her head. Once again she was confined to her bed because she was sick, and it was incredibly boring. The worst part of all this was being alone and helpless. When she woke up this morning unable to move, she pitifully tried to hide it from Emerald because the older girl would have just worried about her. But it wasn't possible to hide her illness, Emerald always saw past it. She checked up on Crystal every morning whether she was sleeping in her own room, or in Emeralds spare bed.

"Emerald said I shouldn't get out of bed today, but I feel better." Crystal thought throwing back her blankets. She swung her legs over the side of the bed and carefully tested if she could stand.

"See Emerald, I'm fine." Crystal said to the empty room with a soft smile. She walked barefoot out of her room and down the hall towards the common room. She was hoping that she would find someone there, it didn't really matter who.

Inside the common room Ruby was watching Marigold seethe about something. She didn't really know what it was about this time, but often it didn't even matter. When she watched Crystal walk in with her nightgown still on, she knew trouble was coming.

"Now may not be the best…" Ruby tried to warn her, but she was too late. Marigold was just looking for someone to attack and the weak Crystal was an excellent target.

"Oh look who decided to wake up." Marigold grumbled.

"Did I do…" Crystal started to ask confused.

"No nothing at all, you never do anything." Marigold shot back.

"Because you always do everything, right?" Ruby asked stepping in.

"Not all of us get the luxury of lying in bed all day." Marigold tried to point out.

"Is that your only reason to be mad at her? Because she gets to spend most of her days too sick to get out of bed?" Ruby laughed.
"If that is the best that you can do, I think you should leave now."

"Are you planning to force me?" Marigold growled.

"If I have to yes, but I'm sure Diamond would love to hear that you are attacking Crystal." Ruby pointed out. This threat caught Marigold's attention, since she had no interest in spending the night in the dungeon.

"Fine have it your way." She grumbled leaving.

"Thank you…what was that about?" Crystal asked quietly.

"It was nothing, she was just looking for someone to vent her anger on. But if you really want to thank me…" Ruby replied, she grinned getting a fun idea.

"What?" Crystal asked

"I could use your help with something." Ruby smiled.

"What do you mean?" Crystal asked. She was guessing from the way Ruby was talking this wasn't going to be something simple.

"I just want to pull a little joke on Marigold that's all. Something simple but if I do it alone I won't have time." Ruby explained.

"Wouldn't Marigold be even madder?" Crystal asked.

"Not if she doesn't know you are involved. Trust me, I'm the one she will think did it." Ruby promised.

"I don't want to make Marigold angry… but Ruby did just help me." Crystal thought uncertain. In the end however no matter what doubts she had, Crystal was no match for the persuasive powers of Ruby.

The two of them went to Marigolds room across the hallway and started to move the furniture around. Ruby directed the actions, having them move the bed against a wall and standing it on its side against the closet door. Then they moved the dresser to pin it against the wall. But Ruby wasn't finished there, she had Crystal help her move the dresser against the window so that it couldn't be accessed. By the time they were finished Marigold would not be able to reach any of her cloths, or sleep in her own bed tonight.

"Are we done?" Crystal asked quietly. Moving the furniture around had drained all her strength away and she wasn't sure shed be able to help any more.

"Yes now all that's left is leave and wait for her to find out." Ruby grinned. But she didn't like the way Crystal looked.
"You look a little pale, are you feeling all right? Maybe we should head downstairs and get you something to eat?" she suggested.

"That might…be good." Crystal smiled weakly. Ruby extended her hand and she took hold of it, not trusting herself to remain upright until she regained some of her lost strength.

"You haven't eaten anything today have you. I'm sure Holly saved you something." Ruby said a little worried. Inside she was feeling a little guilty, she should have tried to pace Crystal a little more.

Ruby tried to lead Crystal down stairs, holding that hand to support the fragile girl. However Crystals strength gave away and she fainted. Her grip on Ruby slipped away causing her to fall down half a flight of stairs.

"Crystal!" Ruby shouted trying to catch her arm, but she missed and Crystal hit the ground. Flinching Ruby jumped down the remainder of the stairs calling out.

"Don't try and move, I'll get help." She promised running off to find Emerald. But Crystal couldn't hear her, and she was in no condition to go anywhere.

By the time that Crystal woke up, she found herself in Emeralds room with the older girl sitting patiently beside the spare bed.

"What…" Crystal started to ask, but she was quickly stopped by Emerald.

"Don't try and sit up. You took a little fall, I managed to fix you up but didn't I tell you not to get out of bed today?" Emerald asked. Crystal was expecting her to look angry about her disobeying.

"I'm sorry, I just wanted to…" Crystal tried to explain.

"I understand, it can be boring when you are stuck in bed. " Emerald smiled kindly at her.
"I'm going to keep you here over night so I can keep an eye on you. Please don't try to get up again."

"I promise." Crystal said. At least in here she would have company and she could feel safe knowing that Emerald was going to be nearby.

"Is there anything you need?" Emerald asked.

"How about something to eat?" Crystal replied quietly.

"That's a good girl, I'll be back soon." Emerald smiled getting up. She was happy to see that Crystal was on her way to recovering.

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