Here it is:
But the old man shook his head, “I’m sorry, boy, but this is very important.” He put so much stress on the “very” that it seemed like it might collapse.
Ristle looked up at the teacher, who stopped his monologue for a second the nod slightly at him. So Ristle followed the old man into the trees.
They stopped next to the creek. A tiny, green tail disappeared into the trees. The old man chuckled.
“Hunting season’s finished, and there’s still spooks in these woods.”
“We always have spooks and sprites in these parts, sir,” Ristle said politely. “We always have had a lot of spirits.”
“I’m sorry,” the old man said. “Sorry for bearing the news that will ruin your childhood. That will end this polite, laughing, charming boy and-” he sighed audibly, “-and- I’m very, very, so very sorry, Rustle…”
“It’s Ristle, sir,” Ristle said, then thought, What a stupid old man. Not even bothering to pronounce my name correctly. “But what is it?”
“I’m- I- don’t, don’t kill the messenger Ristle, but… your parents…,” And Ristle knew, from the clenching fist that has seized his stomach fiercely in its iron grip, what he was about to say. “They- they are… dead.”
And then the world collapsed.
Heh heh, short, but CLIFF-HANGING!!!!!!!!!!