|The following night, Bonnie woke early again and went out to the Maynards' special hollow. Tonight, however, she dare not steal food.|
A grey-haired woman in a simple black dress waited for her. She tutted as Bonnie arrived.
"You're late. How much time do you have?"
"About four to five hours." replied Bonnie smartly.
The woman sniffed. "Do you have the snaps?"
"N-no." stammered Bonnie. The woman gave her a wicked pinch.
"Ow!" cried her young victim as tears of pain sprang to her eyes. "Yes!"
"Did you get them discreetly, imbecile?"
"Y-yes! I said I wanted to see the area, so they took me on a walk and we made a day of it. We had a picnic by the-" Her voice caught in a way that would make the hardest of hearts melt. "by the lake and I said that everything was beautiful and I took lots and lots of photos."
"Hm! Give them to me!" rapped the woman. "And stop snivelling, child!"
"Y-yes..." Bonnie checked over her shoulder to see if they were being watched. They weren't, but better safe than sorry. "Nanny."
"Good girl." The beginnings of a dry, cruel smile played round Nanny's lips as Bonnie pulled a collection of photos out of her bag and handed them over.
One corner caught her eye, however. She saw, amongst the pile, a foot. She felt panic rise in her as she considered the possible consequences. She thought she had left all the ones with people in them at Die Blumen!
It was a picture of her sitting with the First Quads, Marie, Frieda, Simone and Lise, the girls closest to her exact age. She had made firm friends with them. If only it were to last...
She extracted it from the pile and handed the rest over.
"What was that?" demanded Nanny sharply.
Bonnie clasped the photo to her chest, hiding it.
"Just a blurry photo." she lied "All you can see is green."
"Let me see."
"No!" Bonnie was beginning to panic now.
"Your kitten is safe." Nanny told her in an ominous, threatening tone.
Bonnie gulped. Trembling from head to foot, she handed over the photo.
"The family you have put up with?" asked Nanny dismissively. Bonnie nodded wordlessly.
"Hm. Useful evidence, Bonita. Your parents will be proud. You are dismissed."
Bonnie ran for the thick curtain of leaves.
"And remember." said Nanny threateningly. Bonnie turned round slowly, her blood freezing in her veins. She knew that tone. "Your kitten is safe. How is your kitten?"
"Safe." whispered Bonnie hoarsely.
Then she ran, but on reaching Die Blumen - she dared not call it "Home" - and getting into bed, she did not fall asleep, instead, she lay awake, tossing and turning.
Who knew what kind of danger the Maynards were in now? And as for- but that did not bear thinking about...