Previous: A Reluctant Ally

 

Hazel got up from the table and backed away. Ash got up with her. She wanted to leave, but she dared not. She could not—not after leaving Holly and Hemlock the way that she had. They’d likely never forgive her for that.

“You’re lying,” she whispered, but the words felt hollow. Somehow, she knew her father spoke the truth, and that frightened her more than she wanted to admit.

Ash’s expression softened, as if he knew she understood. “You know that I’m not.”


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Previous — …Will Bring You Back to Me

 

Holly leaned against the wall in her room as she stared out the window. Dawn had broken, but she hadn’t been able to sleep. That had never happened to her before, being unable to sleep. She didn’t much care for it, truth be told. This was all an ugly mess. Hazel leaving to become a necromancer, and now them unable to figure out where she’d gone. Hazel was always the one who fixed things, just not lately. Lately it was almost like she’d become another person.

Except maybe that wasn’t true. Maybe this was who Hazel truly was, only Holly could never see it before. Even in the weird potion-dream, Hazel had turned to necromancy, even though they had never come to Sarnum or did any of the things that followed. As long as their mother’s soul remain trapped, Hazel wouldn’t ever stop. She couldn’t stop—Holly could see that now. And maybe… maybe Holly wasn’t ever meant to stop her. Maybe she was just supposed to help her through it.


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A Jaunt in Kraków

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So, a couple of weeks ago we got a lot of snow. Like, blizzard amounts of snow. Buses got stuck, trains were canceled, people got stranded. It was the most snow Stockholm had gotten in November in over a hundred years. Madness.

Luckily this all happened the day before I traveled to Poland, and I’m only being partially snarky when I say “luckily.” Had it been the day of, I doubt I would’ve gotten to the airport at all. Trying to get there the following morning was certainly a little adventure in and of itself.


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Previous: A Love Tempered in Death…

 

Ash put out his arms, as if to embrace Hazel, but she moved back.

All words escaped her. It had been so long. She hadn’t seen him since the day he left, close to sixteen years ago. He had changed very little from what she could remember, yet a spell was not at work here. His face bore lines she didn’t recall, his brown hair now liberally dusted with grey. But he looked healthy. Vibrant. Somehow that made her angry. Her mother had died and here he was, looking vigorous and full of life.

Ash put down his arms. “It’s been a long time, hasn’t it?”


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Previous: Odd Possibilities II

 

Holly sat up on the bed and cradled her head in her hands. That man… could he have been her father? Holly never knew him, he had left just as she had been learning to walk—or so she’d been told. She’d never mourned his absence. Why would she? He was someone she’d never met and never loved. Why would she mourn someone she didn’t know?

But now, seeing a man that so clearly resembled Hazel, Holly, for the first time in her life, felt as if her heart had cracked with an emptiness she’d never known was there.


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