Ellis followed his new guardian from the cell; the padded shoes were silent on the hard floors as they traveled down to the outside. It was brighter than it had seemed through the gray windows of his cell. Ellis squinted, trying to block it with his hand. A few steps later, he was led into a horseless carriage, blinking again at the sudden darkness.
The man helped him get settled before seating himself, and a woman in the front turned around and asked, "All set, James?"
"Ready," the man said.
Ellis stared at the man, curious, and was given a smile in return. "If you wish to know, then ask. I know you're capable of speech."
He wiggled his nose and lips, and then licked the tasteless air before sighing. "You are James?"
"Yes. I am the founder of the Sui Generis Protection Agency. We handle cases where magical beings such as yourself are in conflict with humankind or are in need of assistance. We provide the care, therapy, and help necessary for you to return to a normal life."
Ellis nodded, clasping his hands together and dropping his eyes to the artful black strokes that swirled down his fingers.
James chuckled, leaned forward to pat his shoulder, but then stopped just short of it. "I know it seems unlikely, but most people are more accepting of your differences than you previously have encountered, I promise you. Not everyone will treat a Familiar as their own personal toy. Some even go on to live independent lives."
Ellis nodded again, not sure why a Familiar would want to. He brushed his fingers over the necklace he'd been given. "What does this do?"
"The ward merely restrains magic so you cannot currently use it, nor can it be used on you. My son will remove it once we are on our property; he is a skilled Wardsman. There would be no danger in any of us removing it, but it is best if he does it."