I don't own WordGirl


Indeed. There it was. That one word that this man had been deprived of ever since Claire McCallister had chosen to leave him with their son. It had been eight years ago when she did so, when their son was only two, but Theodore had never given it a second thought when his ex-wife had gathered her belongings and left him. During that time, Theodore had never given it any thought of running after Claire. He just let her go as if those eight years had been nothing to one another. He continued to watch the young boy in front of him, who continued to stare at him as if he was just an entity to him than a human being.

Please say something Theodore mentally pleaded to the child before him but he only continued to stare in silence. He couldn't tell what other emotions were going through him or whatever Claire had said to their son about him. "Indeed...Theodore," he finally spoke to him with a nod of his head, "I am...your father." Taking a deep breath, the man tried to keep his emotions at bay.

The child blinked at being called his full name. The only times when he would hear it was when he would get into trouble. "Actually," the child mustered his courage to speak to this man who was supposedly his father, "I am formally known as 'Tobey.'"

Oh? Theodore thought upon hearing that. Never before had he heard his ex-wife call their child 'Tobey' before but in any case, it seemed like a very endearing nickname...and one that fit him so perfectly.

"That's an interesting name. Tobey," he echoed his son's name, giving it a try before smiling in approval. "Whilst I have no nickname, I formally go by Theo. Saves a couple of seconds from saying a full name." Theodore was a man that said a joke every now and then but not many chuckles followed afterwards.

Tobey only stared at this man before him at the attempt of such a joke. It wasn't because he didn't get it, even though it wasn't that good of a joke, but he didn't want to give this stranger any satisfaction and have him thinking that Tobey immediately trusted him. He felt that this whole situation would have been a lot better if his mother had been here. She had known this man more than he did and she would probably know what to do. As for Tobey, he was hesitant to let this man inside the house which would have been the most hospitable thing to do.

Taking Tobey's silence as an answer Theodore could tell that he had stayed more than he should have on their property. There was an urge within him that he wanted to spend as much time as he could with his son before he left once more, but it was going to take more than just a simple visitation. It was going to take a lot of time and it was time that he didn't have. "Well Tobey I better get going," he said as he stood up in straight position and looked down at Tobey, "but I would like to see you again later...if you would like to that is."

If I would like to? Tobey thought. In fact, Tobey didn't know what he liked about this whole situation. It was just too much information that been unexpectedly thrown at him and he didn't know how to react to it all. He wanted to say something like that remains to be seen but that wasn't necessary, let alone polite to say to a stranger who claimed to be his father. "I would have to talk to mother about this," Tobey finally answered. It was the proper thing to do, though he also hoped that she would comply to meeting with this man.

"Of course," Theodore answered with a nod of his head, "until then Tobey." Clutching tightly onto his briefcase and giving his son another smile, Theodore turned on his heel and began to walk off the property.

Tobey blinked as his hand tightened around the doorknob and watched this man walk away. A part of him wanted to run after this man and learn more about him...and try to catch up with the father that he had never got to know, but a part of him needed to trust this man in order for that to work. He was about to shut the door but hesitated to do so. The atmosphere in the house after such a revelation made him feel like he was being suffocated and he needed some fresh air. Something to distract his mind from what he had just learned and the only place that was willing to do that was the library.

A quiet place where he could gather his thoughts and distract himself from what he had just learned. He shut the door behind him and walked down the pavement of the sidewalk, being careful not to step on the cracks. With each step that he took, he thought of the small conversation that he just had with this Theodore man but he couldn't even reach to a conclusion about it. There was just so much that he didn't know about him! He didn't know where he had lived all this time, what he liked, what he disliked. He didn't even know if Theodore would even like him for who he was, a boy genius with his love for building robots and causing destruction throughout the city. He let out a sigh when he finally reached the library and entered inside.

At least the atmosphere in the library was a bit better than being home. No tension, no problems, and no revelations that had been told to him. He walked over to the most preferred section of the library and took out a handful of books on robots and engineering. He felt that he knew the majority of the subjects that were listed in these books but he knew that there was always something new that needed to be learned.

Robots Engineering Chapter 1: Knowing your Tools

Already know that Tobey thought with a roll of his eyes but continued to read the chapter anyway.

A good few minutes passed by when he heard a familiar voice from the table where he was sitting in. Looking up he saw two of his classmates, none other than the two best friends Becky Botsford and Violet Heaslip, whispering to one another. "Ugh," Tobey groaned as he looked at the two girls, "do you two mind, I'm trying to read!"

Both girl immediately halted as they turned their heads and looked at Tobey. Becky sent a glare towards Tobey whilst Violet looked at him apologetically. "Sorry Tobey," she whispered, "we didn't mean to interrupt you."

"You just did," Tobey replied back as he picked up his book and tried to distract himself once more, "now if you two would be so kind whisper elsewhere." He waved his hand towards them in the air as if they were nothing but pests to him.

"I'm sorry," Violet apologized once more, "I was only trying to show Becky that new book series that has come out. I heard it is more popular than the Princess Triana series."

"Really?" Becky asked her friend with wide eyes, now all the more interested to hear more about this new series.

Tobey clenched tightly onto book as he tried to concentrate on the words written on the page, though how could he do so when there was noise in the library. "What did I just say?" he snapped. "Take your annoying presence to a different section of the library. May I suggest the Art Department? You could use more skills."

Violet slightly flinched at the words that were thrown at her. She had never cared about what others had said to her but to have her abilities, which she had worked so hard to achieve, be spoken about in a condescending manner made her feel crestfallen. She turned around and looked at Becky who only continued to glare at the boy genius. "Uh Becky, I think I should head back home," she said as she rubbed her arm with her hand. She had been excited beforehand to show Becky a new book series that she had begun to read and it was right at the same section where Tobey was sitting from them.

Becky turned his eyes over to Violet and looked at her sympathetically. "Are you okay Violet?" she asked as she placed a hand on her friend's shoulder who only gave her an immediate nod of her head.

"Yeah," Violet answered, "I will show the series to you some other time." She briefly glanced at the shelves again before looking at her friend once more. "I think they have checked out the books anyway." The blond mustered a smile before giving her a wave, "I'll see you later Becky."

Becky waved back to her friend before clenching her jaw in anger. The nerve she thought as she whipped around and marched over to the table where Tobey was. At least he was sitting alone and she wouldn't be interrupting anyone else. The moment she reached the table, she slammed her hands onto the table causing Tobey to jump in his seat.

"Honestly..." Tobey mumbled as he glare up at Becky.

Becky furrowed her eyebrows at him and said, "you have some nerve speaking to Violet like that! How dare you?" Becky wanted to scream at him for what he had said but Ms. Dewey would hush her for being so loud.

"She'll get over it," Tobey responded with a glare, "now please leave me be."

"Not until you apologize to Violet," Becky told him, "you hurt her feelings. You know how much effort she puts in her artwork but to have you speak like that...that's just impolite of you."

"Oh no," Tobey said in a sarcastic tone of voice, "I was being rude to poor Violet. When have I ever been polite to anyone?" he asked her before letting out a sigh and burying his head back into the book.

There have been some moments Becky thought and during those moment she had been present for when she was both Becky and WordGirl. She was about to retort when she heard that weary sigh escaping from his lips. He seemed more agitated than usual and if Becky didn't know any better, she knew that something was up with him. She slid the chair from the table and sat down across from him as she still bore that frown upon her eyes.

Tobey looked up in confusion when he saw her sitting across from him. "Can I please read this book in peace? I'm trying to concentrate."

Becky folded her arms across her chest and looked directly at him. "I have seen you check out that book before and you weren't satisfied with it."

"How do you know what I'm satisfied?" he shot back.

"Look," Becky said, trying to keep as much patience as she could at the moment, "I am not here to start bickering with you. Something is bothering you and don't you deny it." On the bright side, at least he's not going on a robot rampage.

No other person had ever asked Tobey how he felt. He didn't count his teachers, for it was their duty to make sure that their students felt better but someone his age? That was a rare occurrence. He took a deep breath and shut the book before looking up at Becky. "I don't know what I am bothering to tell you all of this," he said to her.

"I have been told that I'm a great listener," the brunette said to him.

That may be true but that wasn't the only reason why Tobey bothered to tell her anything. She may say that she was a great listener and perhaps live up to that title but he could see a friend in her, even though it was never made official between them. They were just acquaintances and with the way that he behaved towards Becky, that's all they were going to be. "Right," he spoke, "do you remember that day when we had that project at school? The one with the family tree?"

"Yeah," Becky said with a nod of her head, "why?"

Tobey stared down at the book once again as if the answer to all of his questions that he had was within that book. "I just had a visitor come to my house earlier today. A man who claimed to be my father."

Becky blinked in surprise at what Tobey had said. Now that she thought about it, she couldn't recall Tobey talking much about his father during that project in class. The only thing that she remembered was Tobey saying that he was named after his father and that was it. "But Tobey," she said, "that's great for you isn't it?"

"I know," Tobey said, "but I just didn't feel that...connection that I would have felt. He hasn't been in my life for years and it makes me wonder what reason he has now after so many years?"

Becky remained silent for a beat. That seemed like a reasonable question to have. If she was in the same situation as Tobey and her birth parents actually came to visit her, she would find herself in the same predicament and wouldn't know whether to remain silent or jump for joy. "Perhaps he has been busy. Didn't your mom say one time to my mom that he was always traveling on business trips?"

"That may be," Tobey said, "but it's a feeble excuse...and after eight years. Eight years! And now he has decided to pay us a visit."

There was a tone of frustration in his voice and Becky truly didn't know how to respond to that. She glanced down at the table for a second before looking up at the boy before her. "Does your mom know?"

Tobey shrugged his shoulders. "I don't know," he answered her, "but he told me to tell her that he was in town. I don't know where he's staying but..." he placed the tips of his fingers on his temples and rubbed them in a circular motion. "This is giving me an immense headache." He took off his glasses and pinched the bridge of his nose to keep the headache at bay but it was just pounding in his head.

"If I were you," Becky said, "I would tell your mother first about him and see what she has to say. I wouldn't trust a stranger, even if they were a family member, without consulting with parents first."

"Oh what a lovely idea," Tobey said with a hint of sarcasm in his voice, "thank you for that suggestion on something that I already planned on doing."

Becky clenched her jaw once again and frowned. "I was just trying to help, sheesh." With those words, she hopped off the chair and was about to leave him along before she turned around and looked at him. "Just so you're aware, you still owe Violet an apology."

"I will apologize when I see her again...depending on how my mood is," he mumbled the last sentence only to earn another glare from Becky.

Why does he have to always be so difficult? Becky thought as she walked away from the table and proceeded over to a different section of the library. However, there was a feeling that she couldn't shake off from the conversation that she had with Tobey. If her own birth parents had randomly shown up at the Botsford's door and claimed to be her birth parents, would Becky be just as hesitant to trust them?

Taking a deep breath, she pulled out a book from the shelf and proceeded to the check out line towards Ms. Dewey with an artificial smile upon her lips.