I am Molly. He is Daniel. She is Sophie.
I knew who Daniel was, and I knew who Sophie was, but I wasn’t clear now who I was anymore. I didn’t have world-saving stress on my shoulders. All we needed to do was raid the bookstore, and they wouldn’t put up any fight. Far as they were concerned, we were just good business.
I don’t have any crush on Keith. My innate sense in psychology told me that I was using him as a distraction from stress, simply because there wasn’t really another reason to like him. He wasn’t especially cute, smart, funny, or strong. In fact, I quickly realized that he was a goofy idiot when he wasn’t fighting. It was so stupid that I started giggling whenever I saw him, which didn’t help since he seemed to have caught on that I’d liked him.
I ditched the makeup and went back to messy ponytails and normal clothes. Mage said I looked more like myself. I felt more like myself. In fact, the longer I stayed like that, the more I was sure what myself was.
“Man,” I said to Sophie as we raided the bookstore.
“He’s a mass murderer.” Sophie and I were having fun. The store owner decided to listen in on our conversation, and we’d described Daniel’s battle in gory detail. I was secretly watching the clerk turn pale.
“Hey, you wanna get the heck out of here?” I heard Ryder whisper to a book. I smiled. I felt so much better. Bookstores were one of my favorite places.
“Really,” I said back to Sophie. “You wouldn’t want to cross him in a battle. He’d kill you… or worse.”
“Did you see when he scalped her?”
I watched the clerk turn from pale to green. It really was an unpleasant color.
“Yes!” I said. “It was more disgusting than when I was standing in horse dung.”
The clerk disappeared into the back room and didn’t come out.
“That apple won’t keep the doctor away,” Sophie said with a grin.
“Ohhh…. bad!” I took a breath as if I were to say something else, and heard the floorboard creak as a telltale sign that the store owner was leaning closer. I whirled around. “Hello!” I said in an excessively chirpy voice. “Do you have a book that you’d like to recommend?”
Pale, green, blushing… was this guy a chameleon?
“Price is no object,” I babbled on sweetly. Considering that I’d just been talking about an all-out bloody war in mucho adjectives, the happy thing was really messing him up.
“That one,” he said, pointing vaguely to an area of shelf and quickly walking away.
I smiled nicely. “Thank you!” I turned to Sophie. “You know, it’s really not nice to walk away before someone can say thank you to you.”
“He didn’t even say ‘you’re welcome’ back to you!” Sophie replied. Then we both lost it giggling.
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