Note: To read The Wishing Map from the beginning, click here.
The Wishing Map
Chapter Twenty: Tea for One (Continued)
Previously: The mysterious Rhema commanded Gina to find and smite her “true enemy.”
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“Could I have some of that tea now?” Gina asked.
“If you will.” Rhema turned around with an already-poured cup in her hand and held it out to Gina. “If it doesn’t work, we can try again another time.”
What does she mean, ‘If it doesn’t work?’
“And ‘untake’ is perfectly correct, by the way.”
Gina looked down at the spider-veined saucer. Something about its delicacy made her want to drop it, but she fought the urge and lifted its equally antique mate. When she looked up, she saw Rhema staring at her with tears in her eyes. For one brief moment, she could have sworn she’d seen this face before, long ago when…but then the memory was gone. She closed her eyes and brought the cup to her lips. The tea smelled as if it were distilled from every slight and every wrong she’d ever experienced. Her mind flooded with memories….
…of doing detention every day for a month when Kara and Lindsay Hurd hid Treece Vondermueller’s grandmother’s watch in her desk and swore Gina had stolen it (Treece still believed she did)…
…of being forced to spend half a year’s allowance on a puppy for that autistic girl Lenora Klemmer after Gina had set all of Lenora’s pet grasshoppers free (her only motive had been to rescue the poor creatures)…
…of Artifíga and Skelljaip humiliating and nearly killing her, then crushing her dreams while the entire town of Rennou looked on!
She also remembered things that had never happened…
…being prodded and leered at in a mudbrick bazaar by a toothless man snorting powdered flame-ants, who was considering purchasing her as a slave…
…reigning over a palace of melting ice…
…standing over the man in the gold helmet and hacking at his head with a sword!
“I would never do that!” Her eyes slammed open. There was no one there. “I can’t do this!” she protested. “I have to find the Revealer!” All she could see was the edge of the forest. The cottage and the giant rainbowwood tree that had housed it were gone, and so was the cup of tea. She turned to her right and saw Zack staring at her.
“So I dreamed it?”
“Not exactly.” He pointed to her back.
She reached behind her and felt the sword hanging from the leather harness.
“That’s the sword she stabbed me with,” said Zack.
“Look.” He pointed past her shoulder.
She turned and saw, to her astonishment, that they were at the southern edge of the Rainbowwood Forest. At the base of the hills, no more than a mile off, was Kellansend, dotted with just-lit kiss lanterns. Impossible. They should have been hours away. They’d only left Naimian…how long had it been anyhow? Yet there was Kellansend, and just beyond it the blue-green waters of the Kellish Way.
And it almost felt like home.
Thoughts: True quests alter not just our actions, but our character.
To read The Wishing Map 102, click here!