Sisters of Blood and Spirit Page 74

“Why? Because there’s only room for one ghost in this house?”

“No, because it was a long time ago, and she... Don’t you think she would have moved on?”

Wren shrugged in the glass. “Maybe she can’t. She disappeared the moment I spoke to her.”

I shook my head. My reflection didn’t. “Why would she do that? It doesn’t make sense.”

“I don’t know,” Wren replied a little sharply. “I’m just telling you what I saw.”

“You should try to find Emily in the Shadow Lands. Maybe she knows something.” It had to be a mistake, right? Residual energy, maybe? But this house had been in the family for a long, long time. Maybe Alys was bound to it in some way. Maybe she had shitty timing just like her sister.

I managed to eat a little breakfast and downed a quick coffee. Wren walked with me, even though I couldn’t really talk to her—people might see or hear. She talked to me, though. Mostly she sang silly songs, or talked about something she’d read in a magazine. It was an obvious distraction tactic and I didn’t care—hearing her talk about sex articles was hilarious. I had to bite the inside of my mouth to keep from laughing.

I made it through first period, and second. Third period I normally had with Roxi but it was the one I had a test in, so I didn’t have to even look at her. I just concentrated on my paper until the end of class.

By lunchtime I felt better—a little more confident in my ability to navigate high school with some degree of success. No one called me a freak or mocked me to my face. No one talked to me at all. Whatever. It didn’t matter. I was okay. I would always be okay. I didn’t have a choice.

I found a seat by myself in the cafeteria and sat down. I had a reading assignment for English that I’d decided to get started on and was deep into the book when Wren said, “You’ve got company.”

I looked up. Mace, Sarah, Roxi, Gage and Ben all sat down at my table. I didn’t know they’d even let Gage out of the hospital. Sarah was the only one who didn’t meet my gaze. She was staring at the wall.

“Can we talk to you?” Mace asked, already sitting down. The rest followed him. Ben came and sat next to me.

I marked my place and set the book aside. “Sure.” I sounded so calm and composed. Like I couldn’t care less, but I was very aware of Ben beside me, and how every muscle in my body was stiff as a board.

Mace leaned his forearms on the table. “So, first of all, we want to thank you for what you did for us.”

“And Wren,” Roxi interjected. “For what she did for us, too.”

“You’re welcome,” Wren chirped, even though they couldn’t hear her.

My gaze locked with Mace’s. I couldn’t quite make myself look at Ben. “But?”

He frowned. “No but. Thank you. You saved our lives and we appreciate it.”

“Yeah,” Gage added. “Like, more than you’ll ever know.”

“And we’re sorry for bringing you into this—and for being weird afterward.” That came from Sarah, which surprised me most of all.

“Not so freaked out that you couldn’t suck face, you oversexed witch.”

I blinked and glanced at my sister. What the hell was that all about? If looks could kill Sarah would be a ghost now, too. Sucking face? Oversexed? Oh, no. Had something happened between Sarah and Kevin? Was that where Wren had gone when she’d “slipped out” the night before? No. Sarah was with Mace. She wouldn’t... Would she?

“Don’t worry about it,” I told her. I didn’t tell her that what she needed to worry about was a jealous teenage ghost.

“No,” Ben said. “Let us explain.”

I looked at him. It hurt. “You don’t have to explain. I wigged you out. I get it. You saw what a freak I am and it scared you.”

They all stared at me—even Sarah.

“Scared us?” Roxi echoed.

“Yeah, it was a little scary,” Ben allowed, “but you were hot.” He blushed when Gage laughed and nudged him in the ribs.

“You were amazing,” Mace informed me. “You moved so fast. Kevin said you moved like them—like the ghosts. We could only see them sometimes.”

Wren sat up straight, suddenly interested. She gave me a strange look. “That is fast.”

“It was pretty cool,” Sarah added, making my eyebrows jump. A compliment? Really?

“Anyway,” Roxi said, “we just wanted to say thanks.” She handed me an envelope.

Gage grinned. He was so adorable. “It’s from all of us.”

I took the envelope, watching them warily as I opened it. Inside was a card with a picture of a tabby dressed as Wonder Woman. I opened it up. Inside it simply said, “Thank you!” and everyone had signed it. There was also a Fluevog gift certificate inside. It was enough for a pair of shoes from the new fall line.

“You guys...” I was speechless. I was touched. I had never been so glad to be so wrong in all my life. “I thought you didn’t want anything to do with me.”

“Why?” Gage asked. “Because you’re a ghost-fightin’ freak?”

Ben smiled at me. “You’re our ghost-fightin’ freak.”

“We’d like to be your freaky friends,” Roxi informed me. “Your Scooby Gang.”

“Oh, God,” Wren groaned. The magic of Scooby-Doo was lost on her.

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