"Here! You almost slammed the damn door on me!"
Dori waved his hands dismissively; heading directly into little Ori's room to make sure the young child was still fast asleep.
As Nori stood in the doorway, he watched patiently as Dori smoothed the red hair of the sleeping child, tucked him in, and then exited the room; pushing passed him roughly as he did.
"The third time in one month," Dori mused as he headed into the small, tight kitchen. "Are you trying to beat a record? Or create one?"
Nori snorted and leaned upon the counter as Dori went about making tea; watching his elder brother in silence and with a small smile upon his face.
"Well?" Dori asked at last as he put the kettle on to boil, "Say it. I can tell you've another smarty comment to make."
Pulling something from his tunic, Nori jingled it in front of Doric before dropping it on the counter.
"I'm sure it's more than enough to pay for Ori's medicine," He explained, "I heard him. He's still wheezing a bit."
Dori moved to speak but instead eyed the purse, then his sibling, sneering as he did.
"You let yourself be arrested?" He asked, and moved the kettle when it began to whistle, "So…your new little charge was nothing more than a diversion?"
Nori offered a shrug and smirk; "Obviously."
Dori's shoulders slunk and, knowing not what to say, turned and began to finish the tea.
"As always," Nori, continued to prod, "I will pay you back."
Dori snorted and continued dipping the tea bag in silence before replying softly: "Ori isn't a baby anymore. He's starting to notice you."
Looking at the steaming cup placed before him; then at Dori whom sipped from his own hot mug, Nori asked: "When?"
"Pay your new fines," Dori ordered "gather what you need, after that…it doesn't matter so long as it's when Ori isn't around to see you go."
Nori pushed his cup away and stood up straight; "Tonight," He announced, "I'll pack tonight."
"What about your fines?" Dori demanded, his voice rising slightly, "You'll get a warrant-again-that'd be the…fifth one?"
"My sixth," Nori corrected, "and I'm not afraid or worried about some piece of paper."
Dori cursed in the ancient language and turned his back on his brother just as he muttered something.
"What was that?" Nori demanded, "Come now brother and speak your peace."
"I said," Dori hissed, "You-are-just-like-your-father!"
Nori's eyes narrowed for a brief moment; looking down the hallway to where Ori slept, then back at his sibling, He said: "I wouldn't know. I don't even recall him. But that's fine if you meant it as an insult…doesn't surprise me considering you're much like Mum."
"Don't speak of her like that with that kind of sneering tone!" Dori spat, poking a finger inches from Nori's face.
"Don't provoke me to speak of her like that!" Nori shouted even louder, "You're the one who just can't accept the type of dwarf mother was!"
"She loved us and did her best for us!" Dori argued, "Besides I was the one that had to take all the scraps while you were lauded over and adored by her!"
"Oh and look what good it did for me," Nori teased softly, prancing away from Nori as though dancing.
"Where're you going?" Dori demanded, hands on hips, "I'm not done with you!"
"Well I'm done with you and all this silly nonsense!" Nori spat back over his shoulder, and disappeared into his room with a violent slam of his door.
How long time had passed, Nori couldn't be sure, all he knew is that he didn't want to see Dori again.
But all that seemed only to be a hopeful dream when, to his great frustration, the door began to creak open.
"I'm almost ready," He moaned, "Just let me get my cloak on right, yeah?"
When there was no reply, Nori groaned and turned to start another verbal spar with Dori, but instead he choked on his words and stared embarrassingly at the child that had entered without a word.
"Ori," Nori breathed, offering the most reassuring smile he could, "You should be resting and not up and about. Not until that congestion clears away."
Ori sniffled, wiped his nose on his sleeve, and looked up at his big brother with frightened eyes.
"Don't go!" He whimpered, "Don't go away again! It takes you too long to come back!"
Nori smirked and went down on one knee, offering opens arms to the boy whom eagerly ran into them.
"I always thought of you and Dori when I had to leave before and I'll do the same now; No matter how long it takes for me to come back Ori, just remember what you said: I always come back."
Nori held Ori gingerly before releasing him and standing; "Off to bed," He said gently, "You need your rest…that way you can practice your aim with that sling shot, eh?"
Wiping his nose again Ori nodded before slipping away, whimpering as he did, and out of Nori's sight.
Slinging his pack onto his back, Nori sighed and pushed away the sudden grief, and looked over his room one last time before stepping out into the hallway.
As he did, he caught sight of Dori standing in the door way of his own room; silently the two exchanged stony expressions before nodding there heads at each other.
"Be safe," Dori said as Nori turned to go, "avoid the main roads."
Nori rolled his eyes yet still he said with a smile: "Always."