Dad was drunk again. Luke sighed angrily as he threw the empty bottles out. He called his sisters and let them walk with him to the justice building this time. Last thing Luke wanted was for his little sisters to be exposed to his father when he was drunk. He'd threatened the man countless times that if he kept doing it Luke would call the peacekeepers and have himself and his sisters taken from the house, and his dad would clean up for a little while and then go back to it. Normally Luke refused to let Alyssa and Beth join him when he came to sign up for tesserae, but he was afraid they'd find their father while he was inebriated so he let them come this time.
Luke and the girls walked to the Justice building, the girls holding their brother's hands tightly as they crossed the streets. The line to sign up for tesserae was fairly long, so Luke kept holding his sisters' hands. Lyssie was too young to sign up being only nine, but this would be the first time Beth signed for anything. Luke looked at her. "You sure you want to do this?" he asked gently, and she nodded. "You can't take all the responsibility, you know?" she said, holding on to him firmly. As they got closer, Luke let her go. "They're going to take a blood sample and ask you a few questions, but just keep watching me, okay?" he said as he got up there first.
"Lukas Becker, claiming four," he said as the peacekeeper took a blood sample and wrote something down, then nodded for him to go claim a sack of grain and a jug of oil. He listened as Beth did the same thing, and the peacekeeper let her head back. Alyssa stayed with her the whole time, clinging to her arm. Luke took a cart that was provided and loaded his and Beth's tesserae onto it. He looked at the girls and saw how worried they were. Playfully, he lifted Lyssie into the cart and smacked a wet kiss on her cheek, smiling as she giggled and batted him away. Not wanting Beth to be left out, he smiled as he snuck behind her and tickled her, laughing as she shrieked and giggled, smacking him away. "I hate that, Luke!" Luke shrugged as he tickled her again. "Cheered you up didn't I? Lets get this stuff dropped off at the house and go to the park, what do you say?" They started walking back to the house, when Luke noticed someone walk into their path. Thinking it was a peacekeeper, he stopped right away, but they weren't wearing white uniforms. Still, Luke stopped his sister from moving forward. "Sorry, didn't see you there!" he said.