In another time, in another place, Artemis Fowl had been born alone. In that time and place Orion Fowl was merely his alter ego, a result of the Atlantis Complex. This however, is not that time and place. Angeline Fowl gave birth to twins. Orion was born as a real person, instead of a product of declining mental health. And that... that changed everything.
It was on a particularly dreary morning that it all started. At least for one of the Fowl twins.
Rain had been hammering the Manor nonstop since 2 AM. Neither of the eleven year old Fowls were asleep. Artemis had locked himself in his study yesterday afternoon and had not been out since. Orion did not particularly care what he was plotting this time. It had been a long time since he'd cared about his twin much at all.
An eleven year old boy shifted under his covers. He peeled open a blue eye to stare at the clock.
The boy scowled briefly. He leaned up on his elbow to look out the window.
It was still dark. Still pouring with rain.
With a groan, Orion Fowl sat up on his massive bed and switched on the bedside lamp. The sudden change in lighting made the boy wince as his eyes adjusted. Of course, that didn't stop him from reaching a hand out to the bedside table. He always kept a thick fantasy novel there. Just in case. (More often than not, these days.)
'I don't know why I even bother going to bed. Might as well spend my time on something interesting,' Orion muttered, scanning the title.
A book of Greek mythology. The one he always used to read himself to sleep. Grinning ruefully, Orion gently cracked the book open.
Unlike his twin, Orion did not have any interest in criminal activity. He was brilliant of course - what other six year old was fluent in any number of languages? It was just that Artemis was better. Better at everything to do with the mind. Orion had never cared. It suited him. While Artemis was inside excersing his brilliant mind, Orion was sure to be outside, burning off energy.
Orion had trained since he was young. Watched Butler and begged to be trained, to learn. It gave him something to do. Something useful. His daydreams about grand adventures hardly counted. Neither did his devouring of the fictional world.
Artemis was a genius. Butler was ... Butler. Orion would be average at both. Brilliant, right?
That was his logic. At least, it used to be.
Back when he still cared.
It had been wonderful when they were both children. Artemis and Orion had been close. Closer than they could ever be with anyone their age. Artemis was too brilliant, and Orion too eccentric. Artemis put up with his twin's quirks, Orion with Artemis' attitude. It worked . Somehow.
He always used to beg his twin to read him their namesakes myth. In all its varieties. Orion adored it. But only his twin could read it aloud to him. (Their mother had tried once. That was the first and only time the boy threw a tantrum. Needless to say, she never tried again.) Artemis would roll his eyes and complain but dutifully recite the myth.
He was happy, back then. Cluelessly, blissfully so.
But then their father disappeared, their mother spiralled into insanity, and Orion was never happy since.
Blue eyes scanned the page, unseeing.
The boy on the bed slowly shook himself out of his memories. He sighed, weariness seeping into his body. This miserable atmosphere was getting to him. Orion Fowl was not one for sitting around feeling sorry for himself. He and his brother were similar in that, at least.
If nothing else.
Shaking his head, Orion shoved the book away. Greek mythology brought back too many painful memories. That simply wouldn't do. Not this day. Maybe this day would be the start of something spectacular! Perhaps an adventure, just like the all those fairy tales.
( Orion firmly ignored the voice in the back of his head that scoffed skeptically. Ignoring reality was always his talent.)
He swung both feet to the carpeted floor of his bedroom. He surveyed his room. The walls were plastered with various fantasy posters. The thick, ceiling to floor curtain was partially open. There was a door that led to his closet, and that was where he headed.
The first thing anyone noticed about his closet, was that it was split in half. One half held clothes, neatly folded to make space. The other half contained books. Fantasy novels, fairy tales, mythology, mystical lore. Orion was an expert on the fictional. He'd read it all. It was an obsession.
Orion looked over his books consideringly. Paperbacks, hardbacks, big ones, small ones. So much variety. Otherwise he'd get bored. Eventually, he picked out three especially thick ones, before heading back to read in bed. It was still so early after all.
Anything could happen today.