“No way.”

“Why would I lie to you?”

“You sound so stupid.”

“Do I?”

“Prove it!”

“What do you want to see?”

She folded her arms. “Something cool.”

He grinned and was still – the grin widened and his body stiffened. His hair stood up, juggling little blue arcs between strands. She wondered when he had sneaked ozone-scented cologne on.

He produced a silver pocketwatch (which she had not noticed before) and examined it, nodding. “See?”

She raised an eyebrow. Leaves floated mid-breeze, people stood frozen in mid-step, and bicyclists had stopped without putting down their kickstands.

“It’s not bad,” she said after a bit. “But it’s not great, either.”

She wiggled her fingers – one at a time – in a wave that went from pinky to thumb, thumb to pinky. The world rippled like gently stirred water: it WAS water – the ground.

His mouth a crescent, he pried open the face of his pocketwatch and plucked the hands out – the hour hand for her, and the minute for himself. “So you were, after all.” The two hands popped like springs, and in a blink were dozens of times their original lengths. She smiled, too: “And you were, too.”

In that quiet, still cove of time, they fished together – a sorceress and a time-traveller, casting their lines on dry land.


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