From “Onyx” Book 4 – Title changed from “No’va”
It was quicker to reach the closely-built houses lining the streets by way of bird. Once on the rooftop, Providence changed back into his squirrel form to scout out which was the correct building. He could distinctly make out certain smells wafting through the air. When he recognized a particular scent, he scampered across shingles, leaping narrow gaps between buildings and alleys, until he paused to sniff again. He knew her scent, had inhaled it when they first met in the icy caverns. It guided him to the doorway of the family’s temporary home. There, the scent was strongest.
Making sure no one saw him shift, he returned to his true form and knocked lightly upon the wooden door. Tufted ears pricked at the faintest movement within. Soon, footsteps could be heard coming toward him, and he stepped back when the door opened.
Light touched upon her face as she stood framed in the doorway. A few strands of flyaway pixie-cut hair fell around the sides of her temple. For a human, she was a vision of flawless strength, and for once in his life no words could pass his lips. Instead, his gaze trailed to a hand still gripping the door handle. One wrong word and he knew she would shut it without hesitation. In her other arm nestled her son, who appeared to be napping against her shoulder.
“Yes?” The voice was stern but not cold, though her arched eyebrow’s questioned why the Healer stood at her threshold.
“I’m…very sorry to disturb you ,” he said quickly. “Jenario had asked me to collect a metal funnel. He was working on something and…couldn’t leave his studies presently.” He could she was judging him, yet her expression remained devoid of emotion.
“Is that so?” Tia replied, and he heard the tap of her finger on the door handle. “It’s not like him to entrust others with his supplies.” A faint smile cracked one corner of her lips.
“It was a bit sudden, but dangerous to leave unattended.” Providence motioned behind him. “And I’m sure you’re aware one of your members is still unconscious. Jenario believed he possessed a treatment.”
It was tempting to let his Sight-reading abilities scoop into her current thoughts, but after a moment’s hesitation she offered him entry.