Aquablack

The bridge was cracked from the cold. Colaeus had no intention of slowing down as he drove over it. The satyr had made sure, earlier, that whatever car they scrounged had four wheel drive, so that they didn't have to worry about the icy roads.

But if they slipped, well. It wasn't like the fall down to Lake Menomin was far. Any other time, it might even be survivable- assuming they could find someone to pull them out of the water. But the ice was frozen twenty-two feet deep, touching the bed of the lake.

Rebecca didn’t like this. They hit a bump, and she gripped the frayed remnants of a seatbelt tight to her chest. “Next time, scavenge a car with doors.”

“We can’t afford to be picky,” laughed the satyr, “You’re the one who said this needed to be done quick.”

“I know. But if we slip off the edge and die, then someone else will have to go save the world. And I have very little faith in humanity.”

“Aren’t you a human?”

“The rest of humanity.”

“Eh, you guys have survived worse. Have you heard from the twins yet?”

Rebecca took out her phone and turned it on. It was at 17%. They would have to find a Way and recharge soon, if they wanted to maintain contact. After a few seconds, the telemagic app on it connected, and texts flooded in.

Rebecca scrolled through them, “It looks like they’re on their way.”

“You almost sound disappointed. If I didn’t know any better-”

A large crack shot through the air. The bridge collapsed beneath the car. Rebecca gripped her seatbelt tightly, wincing as she heard the material begin to rip. Colaeus grabbed the steering wheel. It snapped off, and he tumbled around the car as it fell.

Before they could hit the ice, they stopped. The car went all the way through the ice, but Colaeus and Rebecca floated above the frozen lake. Rebecca let go of the seatbelt, and it fluttered into the water.

Rebecca looked up. Dave and Wes were barely recognizable, bundled into thick winter gear. Dave was holding his hand up, muttering an incantation of flight. Rebecca and Colaeus were floated over to them, and then dumped on the ice. The twins laughed.

"Well if it isn't Becky and Old King Coal!" Dave shook the strain out of his hand. "Weren't we going to meet on the other side of the bridge?"

"You did that on purpose!" shouted Rebecca, wiping snow from her face. Colaeus helped drag her to her feet.

The twins stopped laughing. Wes glowered at her, "We didn't break the bridge."

Dave scoffed, "If anything, it's your fault. Shouldn't you be Seeing all that happening beforehand?"

Colaeus clucked his tongue, "You know, they've got a point."

Rebecca stomped her foot. "I meant dumping us while we were still five feet in the air."

Dave chuckled, "Oh, right. Yes, that was on purpose."

"I hate working with you two. How do we even know you can be trusted?"

Wes held up his hands, "Hey, it's our world too, you know. At the end of the day, nobody wants to see it burn."

"You mean freeze," said Dave.

"Whatever."

Colaeus patted Rebecca on the back. "It's just until we fix things. You can't do everything on your own, you know."

"You'd fail miserably," said Dave.

"Yeah," Wes sighed, "We can't all be Gallisen, you know."

"Could you shut up about that?" Colaeus growled, cocking his head towards Rebecca.

"What?" Wes threw his hands up in the air. "She's been dead for months, okay? Gallisen isn't coming back, we need to move on."

That was a name Rebecca hadn't heard before. Oh, crap.


Rebecca woke up with a start, and then with a migraine. She could smell coffee coming from the kitchen. The cabin was cramped, so anyone making any noise or cooking anything should wake anyone up. But even before her magic manifested, she slept like a log.

She slumped over to the kitchen, and went for the coffee machine. There was already a half-full pot. She poured herself a drink, and looked over to the kitchen table.

"You let me sleep in again," said Rebecca, "This better be decaf."

Colaeus nodded. "Your eyes were glowing blue. I figured it was important." The satyr was slumped on the couch, in his usual spot. The entire 3-person couch. Rebecca shoved his hooves out of the way to make room like usual. He didn't look up from his book.

"Come on, what do we have to do this time?"

"Every time that I've Seen while dreaming, it's been vague. Dreams are unreliable, and up for interpretation. This time, the apocalypse might not be an icy one. It could be the world exploding, or maybe the ice is symbolic of a Jailor's heart, and the apocalypse is that they've taken the Library."

"So you didn't learn anything new." Colaeus leaned over to the coffee table, grabbing his own cup of tea. "That's fine, we could use a lazy Tuesday once in awhile. Well, I could. You have class."

Rebecca paused, then sipped her coffee. Colaeus looked up at her, and she averted her eyes.

He gaped, then rolled his eyes. "I knew it."

"Well shut up, and let me tell you about it."

"Okay, go ahead. I'm all ears," Colaeus tapped the sides of his ram's horns. He set his tea and book on the coffee table.

"Well, it was another situation where we were teaming up White Hand guys- yeah, I know. It was just the twins. But a new name came up- Gallisen."

"Galluson?"

"Let me spell it- it's spelt weird, I know it is." Rebecca scribbled it out on a piece of paper. "She's someone I haven't heard of before. The twins seemed to think she was a hero- I kind of feel like she is, too."

"You got a lot from that vision."

"No, just the name. The rest- seems to be filtering in. Let me focus." Rebecca leaned back. She thought of the dream again, then thought backwards. Most of it flew by, incomprehensible, but she focused on any thoughts of Gallisen.


It was the last stand of the City of Menomonie. All the mages left in the world were enough to cast the barrier around the city, to protect Earth's people from the burning world around them.

But some monsters had still gotten through. Great beasts who swept through tears in the skies, hulking demons from the other side of the sun. Leftovers from the Jailors were fighting them off alongside some remaining Hand operatives. Thought fought to protect what remained of life on Earth. It would not be enough.

Gallisen released her hand from the ritual focus. "I need to go."

"What about the ritual?" asked Rebecca, "I'm not really good at this sort of magic."

The tall woman placed her hand on Rebecca's shoulder, "A while ago, I would have said the same. You might think the student has become the teacher, but you've got a lot of spunk left in you."

Rebecca nodded, "Do what you think is best."


Rebecca's heart wrenched, and she came out of the vision.

"Gods, I hate emotional leakage," she sobbed.

"Anything?" Colaeus handed her a tissue. He was standing, and no longer in his polka-dot pajamas.

"No." Rebecca breathed, collecting herself in the present. "In the future, Gallisen is too difficult to think about."

"How old is she?"

"Maybe a few years older than me. But she said that she learned magic from me. I wish I could find a first name- then we could look her up in the normie databases."

Colaeus hummed. "Are you sure that you're the one who initiated her? I could check with some friends at the Library."

"I don't know. It's not a bad idea."

"What does she look like?"

Rebecca sobbed, "I'll know her when I see her."

"Geez. Okay, don't worry about it. I'll check out the Library."

"Fine, but I don't think you'll find anything. I'll check the names at the DMV in town. Maybe if I pull up all Gallisens, I can run through pictures."

"If she's even in Wisconsin."

"Hey, it's just as likely as someone at the Library knowing her!"

"Alright. Don't strain yourself, and try to be subtle about it, okay?"

"It's pretty easy to stay subtle when you don't have hooves or horns."

"Now that's just uncalled for."