As you all should known if you've read the original book, Firedrake, Ben, and Sorrel landed on the shores of Egypt during the storm. Firedrake hid in a cave as he slept while the other two had to cover up his tracks. Sorrel got caught by humans though and now it's up to Ben to save her.
Alright! On with the story!
There was hardly anyone in or around the big tents when Ben slipped into camp. Most of the people staying there were out in the ruins, freeing ancient walls from the sand in the morning heat and dreaming of secret burial chambers where mummies slept. Ben looked longingly past the tents to the place marked out by ropes where the excavation site lay. It must be a thrill to climb down the ruined stairways where the archeologists were scraping desert sand off the steps.
The sound of exited voices brought Ben out of his dreams. Cautiously he fallowed the noise, creeping along the narrow alleys between the tents, until he suddenly came to an open space. Men in long, billowing robes, and few others wearing pith helmets, were crowding around something that stood in the middle of this space in the shade of a large date palm. Some of them were waving their arms around; others were seemed to have been struck dumb. Ben thrust his way through the crowd until he could see what they were so exited about. Several cages, both large and small, stood under the palm tree. There were chickens in some of them, and another held an unhappy looking monkey. But the largest cage contained Sorrel. She had turned her back on the gaping humans, but Ben recognized her at once.
Lindsay perched at the top of a tree close by to the cages. She was in the form of a blue bird and was listening to the chatting of the humans. They were speaking a variety of different languages but she managed to piece together what they said.
"In my opinion it's a mutant monkey." Said a man with a big nose and receding chin. "No one can doubt it."
Lindsay had to stifle a giggle.
"I do doubt it, though, Professor Rosenberg." Said a tall, thin man.
The demon then caught site of a small human boy. A smile took over her face. She had recognized the caged brownie and had wondered where those other two were. Not much the dragon though, she wasn't interested in him, but the boy, and here he was.
"Love at first site." Lindsay sighed to herself. She wasn't paying much attention the men anymore until she heard that tall professor guy named right on the so called mutant monkey.
"is a brownie. A spotted forest brownie to be precise-which is surprising, since the species occurs chiefly in the highlands of Scotland."
"Smart human." Lindsay muttered.
The brownie seemed to have been listening for she pricked up her ears. Then that Rosenberg professor guy went into how his fellow professor who's name she now knew was Greenbloom was being ridiculous which was pretty typical for most human adults.
"In my view," replied professor Greenbloom. "it's the rest of you who are making fools of yourselves. A monkey! Oh, come on! Have you ever seen a monkey like that?"
Lindsay watched with amusement as the rest or the professors kept coming up with silly conclusions of the brownie and then to Twigleg. It went on for a few minutes until they all moved out to investigate some large foot prints leaving herself, the boy, and the caged up creatures alone.
"Sorrel!" the boy hissed. "Sorrel, it's me."
The brownie girl swung around in surprise. "And about time too!" she spat. "I thought you'd come until these revolting stinkhorns had stuffed me and put me in a museum."
"Okay, calm down." Said the boy investigating the lock of the cage. Lindsay then decided to jump out of the tree while transforming into her human body. The boy swung around in alarm and the brownie jerked her head up past the view of his shoulder. The demon smiled sweetly as she walked over toward them.
"Hi! Need any help?"
"W-who are you?" asked the boy.
"A sweet, innocent girl." The she replied. The girl was beside him now and you could tell she was just slightly taller then him. She turned her head to the cage next to Sorrel's.
"Hey Twigy!" she smiled.
The homunculus lifted his head from his hands in surprise then asked her. "Where have you been?"
"Up in the tree." She answered pointing behind her to the palm tree.
"All I saw in that tree was a bird." Sorrel said.
Lindsay smiled and replied. "That was me."
"You?" Ben and Sorrel both asked.
She nodded then gathered fire in her hands and gripped the bars of Twigleg's cage. In a matter of moments they melted in her hands. Extinguishing the flames she turned around to see Ben and Sorrel staring at her in amazement. Lindsay gave them a smile.
"We better hurry up if want to make it out of here." Twigleg said, braking the silence and making the brownie and human snap out of it.
"That would be a good idea." The demon agreed. "Cause I hear the adult humans coming this way."
Sorrel pricked up her own ears and confirmed Lindsay's statement.
"They're close. Just around the corner." Slight panic in her voice.
"I'll go stall them." The girl said before turning into a young leopard then sauntering over toward the sound of the humans.
Ben and Sorrel stared after her with wide eyes then quickly turned back to their problem, the bars blocking Sorrel to freedom.
"She could've melted this cage before leaving." The brownie huffed.
Still standing inside his cage, Twigleg tugged at Ben's sleeve to get his attention.
"Pick me up and hold me steady in front of the other lock, will you. I'll see what I can do for your bad-tempered brownie friend."
Sorrel gave him a nasty look.
"What's your name?" asked Ben curiously.
"Twigleg." Replied the manikin, putting his spindly fingers into the lock of the cage and closing his eyes.
"Twigleg." Muttered Sorrel. "Suits you."
"Could you please keep quiet?" Said Twigleg without opening his eyes. "I know brownies enjoy a good chatter, but this isn't the right moment."
Sorrel tightened her lips. Ben looked around. He could hear the voices but they were farther off now and were filled with fright and panic. A human formed Lindsay came walking around a tent rubbing her head.
"They threw a rock at me." she pouted as if they should have petted her inside.
Twigleg smiled with amusement, eyes still closed then said. "Nearly done it."
The lock clicked. Opening his eyes with a satisfied smile, he removed his fingers. Ben put him on his shoulder and opened Sorrel's cage. Muttering crossly, she jumped down into the sand.
"Twigleg," said Ben carrying the homunculus over to the sad monkey's cage, "could you pick this lock too?"
"If you like." Said the homunculus, setting to work.
"What's he doing?" hissed Sorrel. "Are you two crazy?"
"Keep your fur on." Lindsay said. "What's wrong with saving the poor little monkeys. We got time."
There was another click. Ben opened the cage door and the monkeys ran away rapidly.
"Come on, for goodness' sake!" complained Sorrel.
But Ben stopped to open the chickens' cage as well. Luckily they were only bolted and not locked. Perched on Ben's shoulder, Twigleg watched the boy with surprise. The voices were now coming closer.
"Almost through!" said Ben, opening the last cage.
"Run little chickens!" Cried Lindsay. "Be free!"
"How do we get out of hear?" asked Sorrel.
"Just fallow me." The demon said before taking off in the opposite directions the voices were coming from. Taking Sorrel's paw, Ben hauled her along after the strange girl. Thanks to Lindsay's distractions and Twigleg quickly steering them out of the camp they made it out without even getting spotted.
Not until they were a safe distance from the tents did they slow down, making their way tangled thorn-bushes and staying under cover. A few lizards scurried away in alarm when Sorrel, Ben, and Lindsay finally dropped to the ground, panting (aside from the demon girl who had quite a bit of stamina). Twigleg climbed out of Ben's hair and sat down on the sand beside the boy, looking pleased with himself.
"Well done." He said. "You three are quick on you feet. I could never have kept up. But I have a quick brain. A person can't have everything."
Sorrel sat up, breathing heavily, and looked down at him. "And you're not the faintest bit conceited either, are you?"
Twigleg just shrugged his narrow shoulders.
Lindsay stuck her chin up at her. "Well little miss sunshine, you seem to be a friendly ball of fur."
"Take no notice of her." Said Ben, peering through the branches. "She means no harm." There was no one in sight. Relieved, he let himself drop back onto the sand.
After a moment of silence Lindsay looked over to Ben and stood up, smiling.
"Name's Lindsay. What's yours?"
"Ben." He replied then indicated to the brownie. "She's Sorrel."
"Nice to meet you two." The demon said before plopping back down to the ground again.
"So how'd you and your impatient brownie friend get in that little situation anyway?" Twigleg asked.
"I'm right here you know." Sorrel snarled at him.
"I know." He replied indifferently.
Lindsay folded her hands behind her back and leaned closer to Ben.
"You think we could tag along?" she asked slyly, blushing a little.
The boy blinked as his own cheeks started to turn a soft red. He looked over to Sorrel then to the newcomers and answered.
The brownie girl sighed with irritation and rolled her eyes.