Chapter Five

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When the death card shows up in a tarot card reading, people often think it means they'll die soon. What they fail to realize is that the death card is not literal but metaphorical. Death represents change. 

Perrie stood frozen on the upstairs landing, Sasha's announcement repeating over and over in her head. She has the power of necromancy. If I'm not mistaken, she used her magic at the funeral home today and brought Aunt Agnes back to life. It couldn't be true. There was no such thing as magic. Before she even realized what she was doing, Perrie found herself charging down the stairs and into the living room. She could hear Harper calling as she stumbled after her, but she ignored her cousin and everyone else in the room save for her mother.

"It's not true. Magic only exists in fantasy books. I am not a necromancer," Perrie declared.

Gwen stood from the couch. "Perrie, I didn't know you were listening. I would never have chosen for you to find out like this."

Perrie shook her head in disbelief. What had happened to the rational, calm mother she knew and loved? She wasn't supposed to believe in magic. Where was the woman who had refused to let her daughter have her tarot cards read at the county fair claiming she didn't want to waste money on parlor tricks?

"I know this must be a big surprise to you, Perrie. It's only natural for you to be hesitant to believe at first," Circe said, moving as if to place her hands on Perrie's shoulders in a comforting gesture.

Perrie jerked away. "Don't touch me." 

A look of hurt crossed Circe's face, but she dropped her arms and stepped back. Out of the corner of her eye, Perrie saw Sasha pull Harper out of the room to give them privacy.

"It's not true," Perrie repeated, her eyes boring into her mother's. "Tell them it's not true."

Gwen held Perrie's gaze for a few seconds but was unable to maintain it. "I can't do that."

"Why not? It's easy. You always told me your family was crazy and that it was better for us to stay as far away from them as possible." Perrie heard gasps from both Circe and her grandmother but pressed on. "So, tell them they're insane for thinking I have magical powers I can use to bring people back from the dead."

"I'm sorry, but I can't. I can't keep this from you any longer," Gwen said, her voice soft. "I thought if Sasha bound your powers, and I kept my family's magic a secret, that you and I would be able to lead normal lives. Everyone thinks magic makes life easier, but it doesn't. All it does is make life more complicated."

"Magic isn't real," the denial sounded weak even to Perrie, but she held tight to it.

"Enough," Abbigail said, pushing herself to her feet. "Talking is getting us nowhere. Perrie's not going to believe until she sees proof, so I'll give it to her." 

Perrie folded her arms across her chest and reluctantly watched as her grandmother crossed to the center of the room. Abbigail didn't say any magic words, wave her arms, or even close her eyes. One moment she was standing with her feet firmly on the floor, and the next moment her body was floating two feet off the ground. Perrie inhaled a sharp breath of surprise. Abbigail grinned down at Perrie and rose even higher until her gray hair tickled the ceiling.

"Magic is real, and it is wondrous," Abbigail said, spreading her arms wide before somersaulting a few times in the air. She righted herself and floated to the floor once more. "Now do you believe?"

"I...I...that was..." Perrie couldn't finish the sentence, her mind still reeling after the sight of an elderly woman flying through the air like Peter Pan.

"I'll take that as a yes."

"I know this is a lot to handle all at once," Circe said with a kind smile, "but we're your family and we'll teach you how to use magic."

"No." The refusal slipped through Perrie's mouth before she even realized it. "I don't want anything to do with magic, especially not magic dealing with dead bodies."

"You have to learn, Perrie," Gwen interjected. "Even though I don't like it, your powers have awakened and you need to be able to control them."

Perrie's eyes flashed. "Don't tell me what I need to do. You lied to me my entire life."

Her mother flinched. "I was trying to protect you."

"You always told me to tell the truth, no matter what. I guess you're above your own rules. Lying to me is not protecting me," Perrie lashed out. "I can't even look at you right now because I'm so angry. I need to get away. Don't follow me."

"Perrie, wait," Circe called, but Perrie was already halfway through the door.

"Let her go," she heard her mother say. "She needs time to process all of this. Besides, it's not like she can go far. She doesn't know how to drive."

Perrie's fists clenched as she stalked out of the living room. She nearly ran into Harper who was exiting the kitchen. 

"You look like you want to punch something," Harper said, her tone matter of fact. "Want to talk about it?"

"No." Perrie knew her tone was harsh, so she tried to soften it. After all, it wasn't Harper's fault that Gwen had lied to her. "I want to get out of here, but I'm stuck because my mom refuses to let me get my license."

Harper plucked a set of keys off the wall. "Where do you want to go?"

"I don't care. Anywhere but here."

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