Fable Page 49


She opened up the book and found that it was just a book. The cover was still the same, but all of the pages were blank. Her pulse started to quicken, and her hands became clammy.

“What happened? Did I break the curse?”

Mrs. Colbert shook her head. “No.”

“Then what—what’s going on?”

“You’ve come farther than any other, and yet you are so young.” Her teacher’s eyes were sad, and Mina could feel dread creeping over her.

“What’s wrong?” Mina asked.

“The Grimoire is just a book, nothing more. It will mimic the Fae book for you, but that is it. It’s lost its guardian, and so have you. You’ve weakened the curse, and now there is only one more thing for you to do to be completely free,” Mrs. Colbert whispered sadly.

“Don’t. Don’t say it.” She knew—she could tell just from the way her teacher pitied her that it was going to be bad. And she knew from the intuitive way her heart was breaking that she couldn’t do it.

“You said it yourself, Mina. All you have to do to break the curse is kill Teague.”

“No…you’re wrong,” Mina said, trying to convince herself.

“Teague is now more vulnerable than ever. Before he didn’t have a weakness. If Jared loves you, then Teague will be feeling those emotions as well. So you have to ask yourself, Wilhelmina Grimm, can you use that to your advantage? You’re Jared’s greatest weakness, and now you’re Teague’s. Are you willing to kill Jared to break the curse forever?”

Chapter 29

Mrs. Colbert stood up and used her hands to smooth her skirt down and put her bag over her shoulder.

“I don’t think I can do it,” Mina whispered, and felt her throat start to catch. She had just started to love again, just to lose it. Well, actually, kill it.

Mrs. Colbert leaned down and gently touched Mina’s shoulder. “I believe you will do what you have to do. Just trust your instincts and your friends, and maybe, maybe you will survive this tale.”

“Why did you have to tell me this? You could have waited, till, like, next week, or next year,” she cried out.

Mrs. Colbert scanned the pool and smiled wryly. “There is no time like the present, since the Fae time and your time don’t always see eye to eye. Plus, I don’t think it will be long before Teague comes for you. After all, he’s going to be pretty upset you got away.”

Mina sighed and started to pick at a spot on her jeans. This was too much. She hadn’t even seen Ever yet. How in the world was she going to tell the pixie that she’d ruined everything? Brought Teague and Jared together, and now she had to kill them both. Was there no bright spot in her future? It seemed like everyone she came in contact with was either hurt, doomed, or dead.

She was so lost in her thoughts that she failed to see what Mrs. Colbert thought was so amusing, since she kept chuckling and laughing.

“Well, that sure is a mighty fine water polo team we have this year, isn’t it?” She nudged Mina and pointed.

Mina groaned and felt her cheeks turn red. Her teacher had caught her ogling the guys.

“Especially that new kid, what’s his name, Nix, uh, no, that’s not right. It’s Nick now. I’ve never seen anyone more acclimated to the water. He may even give Brody a run for his money.” She smiled and moved away from the bleachers, her heels making soft clicking noises as she left Mina to her thoughts.

Mina didn’t need any other urging. She found herself scanning the water, looking for a green-skinned boy. Oh, what was she thinking? He couldn’t possibly have Fae-colored skin here. It only took a moment to see the one young man who was swimming laps around the other athletes. He seemed to be born in the water. His strokes were long and powerful, and he had great stamina and could tread water without breaking a sweat. He actually acted like he had a new lease on life. Well, he did.

It wasn’t until he turned around and made eye contact with her that she did actually truly know it was Nix. He was alive and well, and apparently human. His hair was a shocking red color, and his skin was pale white. But his eyes—his eyes were still that brilliant shade of Fae green.

The coach was busy discussing the tryouts with his assistant, and Nix smiled at her and gave her a thumbs-up. Brody used that moment to hit Nix on the back of the head with the ball. Nix’s head bounced with the impact, and he turned and dove after Brody, attacking him from beneath and pulling him underwater. Brody’s smile dropped from his face as he sucked in a mouth full of water. Brody resurfaced with an impish look on his face and lunged at Nix, pushing his head under the water.

Mina laughed at the boys, who were bonding as only brothers with a love for water could. It looks like Nix had found another family. She couldn’t help but think back on what the phoenix had said to her. Even if I heal him, he will still die on this plane. It was his Fae self that was dying. By bringing him here, he got a chance to live as a human. A teenager with a future that was much more stable than hers.

Maybe Mina Grimm didn’t mess up too badly after all.

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