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Aao ichapter10 2

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Aao ichapter10 2

  1. 1. Previously
on
An
Apocalypse
of
Ice:
 I
hope
you
read
Chapter
10.1,
because
these
two
chapters
go
hand‐in‐hand.

But
Chapter
10.1
can
be
summed
up
in
one
word:
 Drama.

I
probably
should
have
just
called
it
“Drama”
instead
of
“Fairyland,”
but
that
would
have
obscured
the
facts
that
(a)
many
 of
the
family
members
are
living
in
their
own
liHle
fairy
lands;
(b)
drama
will
probably
just
conJnue
for
a
while.

Why
didn’t
I
just
 keep
my
Apocalypse
adorable?

Why?
 But
in
a
nutshell:
Will
did
not
enjoy
college,
because
he
was
struggling
to
survive
on
very
liHle
money
in
condiJons
rivaling
the
 beginning
of
the
Apoc.

While
there,
his
LTW
flipped
to
20
WooHoos.

The
family
discussed
a
potenJal
marriage
between
Will
and
 Jan
Tellerman,
a
theorist
who
also
happens
to
be
Julian’s
girlfriend.

Needless
to
say,
that
discussion
didn’t
go
well.

It
didn’t
help
 when
Sabriel
overheard
it
and
went
nuts,
because
she
thinks
she
should
be
the
heir.

And
Will
came
back
to
WineXell,
had
a
big
 fight
with
Sabriel,
and
met
Alayne.

DANGER,
WILL
ROBINSON
STARK!

Arthur’s
the
only
one
who
qualifies
as
normal;
he
just
wants
 a
boyfriend
and
a
nice,
quiet
life.

  2. 2. “QUIT
LEAKING,
YOU.

NOW.”

Sabriel
took
another
swing
at
the
shower
with
her
wrench.

Her
mood
had
been
fine
before
Will
 turned
up,
but
now
she
just
wanted
to
hit
something.

  3. 3. “Sabriel?”
 “GO
AWAY.”
 “That’s
not
actually
going
to
fix
the
shower,”
she
heard
Arthur
say.

“It’s
probably
going
to
make
it
worse.”
 “How
do
you
know?”
 “I
have
more
mechanical
points
than
you.”

  4. 4. “FINE,”
she
answered,
dropping
her
wrench.

Sabriel
turned
back
to
glare
at
the
shower.

“You
are
NOT
off
the
hook.”

  5. 5. “What’s
going
on
that’s
so
bad
that
you
have
to
take
it
out
on
innocent
pieces
of
plumbing?”
 “You
know
what’s
so
bad.”
 “No,
I
don’t.”

  6. 6. “I
saw
Will
yesterday.”
 “What?

Where?

Why
didn’t
he
come
see
us?”
 “See?

My
point
exactly.

He’s
just
strolling
around
Winterfell,
hanging
out
with
this
Spencer
Fitzhugh
guy,
and
doesn’t
give
a
damn
 about
us.

What
kind
of
heir
is
he
going
to
be?”


  7. 7. “Sabriel…don’t
come
aier
me
with
that
wrench,
but…”

Arthur
grasped
his
chin
as
he
thought
about
what
to
say
next
to
avoid
the
 next
outburst
being
directed
at
him
instead
of
at
someone
who
wasn’t
present.

“I
don’t
know
the
answer
to
that
quesJon.

I
 didn’t
pick
Will
to
be
the
heir.

Mom
and
Dad
did.

And
I
don’t
think
he
doesn’t
care…wait,
you
haven’t
interrupted
me
already?”
 “What
does
it
maHer?”
she
asked.

“They’ve
already
decided
against
me,
just
because
I’m
a
girl.”


  8. 8. “I
only
know
what
you’ve
told
me,
but
I
don’t
think
that’s
what
happened,”
Arthur
said.

“I
don’t
think
they
decided
against
you.

 That’s
not
the
kind
of
thing
they’d
do.

They
just
decided
for
Will.

And
if
he
doesn’t
want
it,
then
you
can
have
it.

I
don’t
want
to
 be
the
heir.”
 Sabriel
stared
at
her
pieces.

“I
sJll
don’t
see
why
they’d
decide
for
Will,”
she
muHered.

He
wasn’t
responsible
enough.

Plus,
 there
was
no
way
he’d
want
to
be
heir
anyway.
 “Because
he
wants
it?

I
don’t
know.

Just
ask
them.

They’re
probably
not
as
closed‐minded
about
it
as
you
think.”

  9. 9. Sabriel
opened
her
mouth
to
talk
again,
but
she
couldn’t
think
of
anything
to
say.

She
was
sJll
preHy
sure
that
her
parents
had
 decided
against
her—but
what
if
they
hadn’t?

“I’m
about
to
top
my
career,”
she
said.

“That
seems
like
a
good
Jme
to
talk
to
 them.”
 “Do
it
then,
do
it
before
then—just
tell
them.”

  10. 10. “We
should
do
our
assignments
first,
though.

You
don’t
want
to
talk
to
Dad
while
you’re
sJll
this
upset.

I’d
rather
not
see
him
get
 punched
in
the
nose
any
Jme
soon.”
 “I
would
not
punch
him
in
the
nose.”
 “Wouldn’t
put
it
past
you,
though.”

  11. 11. “Beat
you,”
Sabriel
said,
standing
up
as
she
finished.
 “Was
it
a
race?”

Arthur
asked
as
he
checked
the
answers
on
his
math
problems.
 “Why
not?”

  12. 12. Like
most
of
the
family,
Julian
had
taken
advantage
of
an
opportunity
to
leave
the
house
when
BriHany
Amana
called
to
say
she
 was
hosJng
a
get‐together
now
that
her
phone
lines
were
open.

  13. 13. He
had
always
liked
her,
he
thought.

Julian
and
his
brothers
had
been
friends
with
BriHany
since
they
were
teenagers,
and
she
 played
a
mean
game
of
chess—without
cheaJng.

He
had
even
flirted
with
her
a
couple
of
Jmes.

But
she
looked
about
ten
Jmes
 more
beauJful
than
he
remembered
in
that
moment.

  14. 14. So
when
Julian
kissed
her,
he
wasn’t
thinking
about
the
fact
that
he
might
be
about
to
lose
Jan
or
about
Mal’s
friendship
with
 BriHany.

He
had
always
wanted
to
find
love
whenever
he
could.

This
situaJon
didn’t
change
that.

BriHany
was
a
good
friend,
and
 Julian
liked
her
a
lot.

  15. 15. And
BriHany
sure
seemed
happy
the
rest
of
the
evening.

  16. 16. Of
course,
the
Starks
had
no
way
of
knowing
that
there
was
another
successful
scienJst
in
the
neighborhood
(specifically,
an
 inventor)
making
her
way
up
the
career
ladder.

Even
if
they
had
known,
they
wouldn’t
have
wanted
to
arrange
her
marriage
to
 Will.

  17. 17. “Will?

Hi,
it’s
Alayne!

It’s
so
great
to
talk
to
you.

I
just
wanted
to
make
sure
you’d
goHen
back
to
Oldtown
safely—what?

You
 have
class
in
an
hour?

Okay,
I’ll
try
to
call
you
back
soon,
if
I
can!”

  18. 18. “She’s
way
too
happy,”
Ali
observed
over
a
chess
game
with
Jocelyn.
 “That’s
not
necessarily
bad,”
Jocelyn
said.

“Maybe
she’s
fallen
in
love.

She’s
Romance,
isn’t
she?

I
think
falling
in
love
would
be
 good
for
her.”
 “As
long
as
she
doesn’t
fall
in
love
with
the
wrong
person.”


  19. 19. “What
do
you
mean?”

 Ali
took
a
look
around
the
house
to
make
sure
Alayne
wasn’t
there,
then
answered,
“Will
Stark.

I’ve
been
trying
to
warn
him
 about
her,
but
he
doesn’t
believe
me.

I
can
understand
why—I
didn’t
think
the
dead
could
come
back
before—but
he
could
be
in
 danger.”

  20. 20. “Danger?”
 “Jocelyn,
he’s
her
great‐grandson.

That’s
just
wrong.”
 “Well,
I
know
that,
but—that’s
just
not
what
I
usually
think
of
as
danger.

I
hear
danger,
and
I
think
she’s
going
to
kill
him.”

  21. 21. The
volume
of
Ali’s
voice
dropped
another
notch.

“I
wouldn’t
put
it
past
her,
if
she
doesn’t
think
she
can
get
what
she
wants
from
 him.”
 “And—doesn’t
he
have
siblings?”
 “Two.

But—”
 “What?”

  22. 22. If
she
killed
all
of
them,
then
she’d
inherit,
Aliena
thought
as
she
stared
at
the
newspaper,
looking
for
a
job
opening.

No.

That
 can’t
happen.

  23. 23. Aier
all,
she
and
Jocelyn
were
going
to
have
a
baby.

Ali
had
always
wanted
a
child,
but
lately
she
had
started
wondering
what
 kind
of
life
her
son
or
daughter
might
have
while
living
in
a
house
with
Alayne.

  24. 24. For
her
part,
Jocelyn
tried
to
be
nice
to
Alayne.

They
were
living
in
the
same
house,
aier
all.

  25. 25. But
someJmes,
everything
she
did
made
Jocelyn
so
angry,
even
when
she
tried
to
be
polite.

Especially
when
she
tried
to
be
 polite.

  26. 26. “Sabriel,
I’m
worried
about
you,”
Chris
said
as
she
caught
her
daughter
about
to
go
up
the
stairs.

“You
seem
so—angry,
so
much
 of
the
Jme.

Is
something
wrong?”
 “No,
nothing,”
she
answered
automaJcally.

But
then
she
remembered
Arthur’s
advice.

It
was
worth
at
least
knowing
if
her
 parents
had
decided
against
her,
wasn’t
it?

“But—why
is
Will
the
heir?

Why
do
you
think
he’d
be
best
at
it?”


  27. 27. “Oh,
sweeJe,”
Chris
said.

She
wanted
to
hug
Sabriel,
but
her
daughter
didn’t
seem
to
like
hugs.

In
fact,
Chris
belatedly
 remembered
that
Sabriel
didn’t
like
being
called
“sweeJe”
either.

“Is
this
because
we
didn’t
choose
you?”
 Why
did
Sabriel
feel
so
stupid
about
it
now
that
her
mom
had
said
it
that
way?

If
she
hadn’t
been
so
nice
about
it,
then
Sabriel
 would
have
been
able
to
stay
angry.

She
nodded.
 “Well…”
Chris
paused
again
to
decide
how
to
phrase
things.

“It’s
not
because
we
don’t
think
you’d
be
good
at
it—”
 “I’d
be
beHer
than
Will,”
Sabriel
interrupted.

“Mom,
someJmes
I
don’t
think
he
even
cares.”

  28. 28. “Don’t
say
that.

Don’t
you
remember
how
he
helped
you
take
your
first
steps?”

Chris
asked.

“He
was
just
as
worried
about
 whether
you
were
going
to
be
okay
as
we
were.

Maybe
more.”

Aier
all,
she
had
raised
two
babies
before
Sabriel.

“Will
cares
so
 much
about
this
family.

He’s
cared
since
before
you
were
born.

So
don’t
you
dare
say
that.”
 Sabriel
had
never
heard
her
mom
speak
like
that
before,
so
she
didn’t
know
what
to
say.

  29. 29. “Can
you
pipe
down
over
there?”
Brandon
asked.

“This
is
from
my
publisher,
and
I
want
to
hear
what
she’s
saying.

Hello,
this
is
 Brandon—what?

The
Economics
of
JusGce
isn’t
selling
as
well
as
you
expected?”

  30. 30. “I’ll
write
something
else
that’ll
be
a
bigger
money‐maker,
then,”
he
muHered
as
he
sat
down
in
front
of
the
computer.

“And
then
 I’ll
find
a
publisher
who’s
actually
willing
to
promote
my
work.”

  31. 31. Sabriel
put
a
smile
on
her
face
as
she
stepped
up
to
the
podium
to
pracJce
her
speech.

It
wasn’t
anything
she
had
planned
for
 school;
it
was
just
something
that
had
come
to
her
while
staring
at
chess
pieces
the
other
day
and
trying
not
to
think
about
what
 her
mom
had
said
to
her.
 “Let
me
outline
my
three‐step
plan
for
taking
over
the
world.”

  32. 32. “Step
one:
Take
over
the
third
floor
bathroom.”
 “Sabriel!”

she
heard
somebody
yelling
outside.

“I
need
to
take
a
shower!”
 “There’s
a
shower
on
the
second
floor!”
she
called,
laughing.

  33. 33. “Step
two—ah,
forget
it.

Playing
pirate
is
more
fun.

And
it’s
good
pracGce
for
my
future.”

Except
she
had
mucked
up
the
rest
of
 her
future,
hadn’t
she?
 Sabriel
kept
rowing.

It
didn’t
maHer.

She’d
show
them
anyway.

  34. 34. “Thanks
for
coming
over
today,”
Arthur
said
to
Ricky.

“I
think
we
might
need
to
work
on
that
group
project
for
history
a
liHle
 more,
though.”

 “No
sweat,”
he
said.

“It’s
fun
to
be
here,
even
if
I
think
your
sister’s
going
to
rip
my
head
off
someJme.”
 Arthur
laughed.

“I
think
she’s
more
interested
in
ripping
other
people’s
heads
off.”

He
paused.

“I
didn’t
think
you
liked
me
for
the
 longest
Jme,
you
know.”
 “Why
wouldn’t
I
like
you?”

Ricky
asked.

“Wait…is
that
your
dad?”

  35. 35. “…Crap.”
 “Hey,
Arthur,”
Mal
said.
 “Uh,
hi,
Dad.”

Arthur
let
go
of
Ricky’s
hands.

“I’ll
see
you
at
school
tomorrow,
okay?”

  36. 36. “Is
he
your—boyfriend?”

Mal
asked.



  37. 37. “Um…I
guess
so,”
Arthur
said.

He
didn’t
mind
that
Sabriel
knew.

She
didn’t
seem
to
care,
and
she
probably
would
have
figured
it
 out
already.

But
he
realized
that
he
hadn’t
wanted
his
dad
to
find
out
that
he
liked
guys.

Maybe
Mal
would
have
found
out
later,
 but
Arthur
hadn’t
thought
it
through
that
far.

  38. 38. “Why
do
you
look
so
nervous?”
 “Um—everyone
else
likes
girls.

Don’t
they?

I
didn’t
know
if
I
was
supposed
to…”


  39. 39. “You’re
supposed
to
do
whatever
makes
you
happy,”
Mal
said.

“And
that
means
loving
anyone
who
you
want
to
love.”
 “You
mean
that?”
 “Of
course
I
do!”

Mal
smiled.

“I
don’t
know
where
you
got
that
idea
from.

Your
uncles
and
I
like
women,
yes,
but
who
you
love
is
 your
decision.

I
just
want
to
see
you
and
Will
and
Sabriel
happy.”

  40. 40. “Now,
do
you
want
to
tell
me
more
about
him?

His
name’s
Ricky,
right?”
 “Yeah.”

  41. 41. Will
had
been
dreaming
about—what
was
it?

He
felt
like
it
was
just
out
of
his
grasp.

Whatever
it
was,
he
knew
for
sure
that
it
had
 absolutely
nothing
to
do
with
three‐dimensional
calculus.

  42. 42. “I
guess
I
had
to
wake
up
eventually,
didn’t
I?”
he
muHered,
rubbing
his
eyes.

Time
wasn’t
going
to
stop
for
him,
aier
all.

Will
 couldn’t
stay
in
bed
and
complain
anymore.

He
had
to
wake
up
and
tackle
everything
that
he
had
to
do
today.

  43. 43. Will
had
actually
made
friends
with
Derek,
who
delivered
a
newspaper
to
his
house
every
morning.

He
wasn’t
sure
exactly
why
 Derek
bothered
delivering
the
thing,
because
there
was
nothing
in
it,
but
it
was
a
job
for
Derek
and
it
brought
someone
by
his
 house
to
chat
with.
 “Fight!

Fight!

Fight!”

Will
finished,
raising
his
fist
in
the
air
as
he
chanted
the
Oldtown
school
cheer.
 “What
are
you
fighJng
for?”
 “I
don’t
know.

It’s
not
like
we
have
a
sports
team,
except
if
there’s
such
a
thing
as
compeJJve
snowball
fighJng.”

Will
shrugged.

  44. 44. He
had
also
met
Candice
Mamuyac
at
the
library
and
quickly
determined
that
she
was
the
cutest
of
the
few
girls
he
knew
in
 college.

  45. 45. He
also
liked
anyone
who
was
up
for
a
good
snowball
fight.
 “You
are
SO
dead,”
Candice
teased
Will.

  46. 46. Will
jumped
from
the
place
Candice
was
aiming
for
to
another
spot
a
few
feet
away.

“Only
if
you
hit
me!”

  47. 47. It
was
almost
like
old
Jmes
back
at
the
house.

But
when
Will
looked
back
on
that,
he
didn’t
think
he’d
ever
be
that
carefree
again.

  48. 48. Julian
knocked
on
the
door
of
BriHany’s
house,
then
let
himself
in.

It
wasn’t
the
most
polite
thing
to
do,
but
he
wanted
to
talk
to
 BriHany
badly
enough
that
he
didn’t
really
care.

He’d
been
thinking
about
her
ever
since
the
party
at
her
house
a
couple
of
days
 ago.

  49. 49. Her
roommate
Maya
looked
over
from
the
pillow
fight
currently
consuming
her
aHenJon.

“Julian?”

she
asked.

“Is
that
you?”

  50. 50. “Yeah,”
Julian
said.

Brandon
and
Maya
had
been
good
friends
for
a
while,
but
she
was
Family,
so
Julian
had
never
been
that
 interested
in
her.

“Is
BriHany
around?

I
need
to
talk
to
her.”
 “Sorry,
she
just
lei
for
work,”
Maya
said.

“She’s
not
going
to
be
back
unJl
about
11.”
 Julian
checked
the
clock
on
the
stove.

There
were
sJll
several
hours
lei
unJl
then.

  51. 51. “Well—can
I
wait
for
her?”

Julian
asked.


 Maya
shrugged.

“Sure,”
she
said.

“As
long
as
you
don’t
mind
Zack
and
I
pillow‐fighJng.”

  52. 52. Julian
sat
down
at
the
chess
board,
but
he
didn’t
take
the
pieces
out
yet.

He
hadn’t
thought
of
anything
to
say
on
his
way
over
 here.

Instead,
he
had
just
figured
he’d
work
it
out
when
he
saw
BriHany.

Now
that
he
had
four
hours
to
wait,
he
should
probably
 think
of
something.
 Why
had
he
come
here
in
the
first
place?
 Because
BriHany
was
charming,
intelligent,
and
gorgeous.

He
didn’t
want
to
lose
her,
too.

  53. 53. Aier
checking
the
clock
way
too
many
Jmes,
BriHany
finally
walked
in
the
door.

“Hey,
Maya!

I’m
back!”
she
called.

Then,
she
 stopped
and
smiled.

“Julian!”
 Was
she
blushing?

  54. 54. “It’s
great
to
see
you!”

BriHany
said,
throwing
her
arms
around
Julian.

“How
did
you
decide
to
come
here?”
 “I
just
dropped
by,”
Julian
explained.

“Of
course,
it
was
at
the
beginning
of
your
shii.”
 “You
shouldn’t
have,”
BriHany
said.

“Actually,
I
was
just
saying
that
to
be
polite.

You
definitely
should
have.

Otherwise,
I
wouldn’t
 have
goHen
to
see
you
unJl
who
knows
when.”

 “I
like
the
way
you
think,”
Julian
told
her.

  55. 55. Julian
realized
he
had
come
here
to
see
if
he
could
fall
in
love
with
BriHany.

He
liked
her,
and
he
knew
she
liked
him,
but
that
 wasn’t
enough.

He
didn’t
want
to
be
with
BriHany
just
because
she
was
there
and
he
didn’t
want
to
be
alone
once
Will
married
 Jan.


 But
as
he
looked
at
her,
he
realized
that
wasn’t
his
reason
for
doing
this
at
all.

Julian
did
love
her.

He
didn’t
love
BriHany
the
same
 way
that
he
loved
Jan,
but
it
wouldn’t
be
right
if
he
did,
would
it?

  56. 56. And
now
she
had
goHen
down
on
her
knees
and
pulled
out
a
ring.

“I
know
this
is
probably
a
total
shock
to
you—”
 “It
is,”
Julian
said.

But
he
couldn’t
hide
his
smile
very
well,
and
BriHany
knew
it.
 “I
can’t
say
I
want
to
spend
the
rest
of
my
life
with
you,
because
I
know
I
won’t,”
she
conJnued.

“But
I
love
you,
and
I
know
I
want
 to
spend
as
much
Jme
with
you
as
I
can.

Will
you
marry
me?”

  57. 57. “I
don’t
know
if
I
should.

I
don’t—I
want
to
say
yes—”
But
was
it
the
right
thing
to
do?
 “Then
say
it.”


  58. 58. Julian
took
a
deep
breath.

“Yes,”
he
said,
pulng
the
ring
on
his
finger.

  59. 59. A
part
of
Julian
wondered
what
he
was
doing.

He
was
a
Romance
Sim.

He
was
supposed
to
hate
the
very
idea
of
gelng
married.

 But
he
didn’t
care.

  60. 60. Besides,
it
wasn’t
as
if
being
engaged
meant
having
no
fun
of
any
kind.

  61. 61. Julian
got
up
a
few
hours
later.

He
didn’t
want
to
leave
yet,
but
he
had
a
feeling
that
if
he
didn’t
go
back
to
the
house,
his
brothers
 would
start
mobilizing
search
parJes
to
track
him
down.
 “I’ll
come
back
as
soon
as
I
can,”
he
whispered
before
he
lei.

  62. 62. “How’s
your
career
going?”

Mal
asked
Sabriel.

He’d
barely
spoken
to
her
over
the
last
few
days
except
for
a
few
mumbled
words
 over
dinner,
and
aier
Chris
had
told
him
about
their
conversaJon
about
the
heirship,
he
wanted
to
try
to
clear
things
up.

  63. 63. “Okay,”
she
said.

“I’m
close
to
gelng
promoted.”

But
Sabriel
didn’t
look
at
him.
 “Is
this
the
last
one
before
you
get
to
the
top?”
 “It
is.”

She
paused,
and
Mal
wondered
what
she
was
about
to
say.

“I
was
going
to
go
talk
to
you
once
I
reached
the
top
and
ask
if
 I
could
be
the
heir.”
 “And
now?”
 “Now?

You
talked
to
Mom,
didn’t
you?”

Sabriel
asked.

“Aier
she
thinks
I
insulted
Will?”

She
wasn’t
going
to
apologize.

She
 hadn’t
done
anything
wrong,
unless
saying
what
she
thought
was
wrong.

But
Sabriel
didn’t
know
if
saying
she
didn’t
think
Will
 cared
had
dug
her
hole
deeper.

  64. 64. “Well,
I
don’t
want
to
see
you
hurt,”
Mal
said.

“But
your
mom
was
right,
Sabriel.

Will
cares
about
our
family
a
lot.

Maybe
he’s
 having
some
tough
Jmes
at
college,
but
I
don’t
think
that
it’s
going
to
change.”
 “Does
he
care
enough
to
marry
Jan
Tellerman?”

Sabriel
asked,
trying
to
stay
calm
this
Jme.

“Because
that
won’t
be
a
problem
 with
me.

I’ll
marry
who
you
want
me
to
marry.

The
only
problem
with
me—”
she
tried
to
get
those
words
that
she
didn’t
believe
 out,
“is
that
I’m
a
girl.”




 “I
don’t
think
that’s
a
problem.”

At
first,
Mal
thought
that
the
problem
might
be
eavesdropping,
but
he
couldn’t
blame
Sabriel
 because
everyone
heard
everything
in
the
house.

Besides,
it
meant
she
had
the
makings
of
a
good
adventurer:
always
paying
 aHenJon
to
her
surroundings.
 “But
Uncle
Brandon
said
‘eldest
son
inherits.’

Of
course
it’s
a
problem.

So’s
being
the
youngest,
I
guess.“

  65. 65. “Will
sJll
might
not
agree,”
Mal
pointed
out.

“I
don’t
think
he
would,
but
it’s
possible.

And
Jan
might
not
agree,
either.”

But
 Sabriel
didn’t
look
any
beHer,
and
Mal
didn’t
think
he’d
feel
any
beHer
in
her
shoes.

“Let
me
ask
you
this—why
do
you
want
to
be
 the
heir?”
 “I
think
I’d
be
the
best
at
it,”
Sabriel
answered
quickly.

“I
know
I’d
do
a
good
job
leading
the
family.

I
know
it’s
hard
someJmes,
 but
I
can
do
it.

Just
trust
me.”
 Mal
realized
he
had
been
holding
his
breath.

He
let
it
out,
knowing
that
he
and
Chris
had
made
the
right
decision.

“When
Will
 was
born,
I
told
myself
that
if
I
loved
him
enough,
everything
would
be
fine,”
he
explained.
 “What
are
you
talking
about?”

  66. 66. Mal
realized
that
he
was
answering
a
quesJon
Sabriel
had
never
asked.

“Being
the
heir
isn’t
about
who’s
in
charge,”
he
explained.

 “Well,
it
is.

But
Brandon
never
would
have
stepped
aside,
if
that
was
all
it
was.

I’ve
always
thought
it
was
about
love.

Love
for
 the
family
and
the
work
that
we
do,
for
your
spouse,
and
for
the
next
generaJon.

And
I
think
Will
understands
that,
and
that’s
 beHer
for
the
family
in
the
long
run.”

 Sabriel
closed
her
eyes.

What
if
he
was
right?

She’d
never
thought
about
having
children.

She
wasn’t
even
aHracted
to
anyone
at
 school.

But
she
couldn’t
give
up.

“It’s
not
like
I
don’t
love
you,”
she
said.

“And
how
can
it
be
all
about
love
if
you
don’t
have
a
 clue
how
to
lead
the
family?”

  67. 67. “Sabriel,
look
at
me,”
Mal
said.

“You’re
going
to
have
a
great
life.

You’ll
go
to
college
and
do
something
great
when
you
come
 back.

And
you
can
go
on
all
the
adventures
you
want
once
you’re
done.

I
don’t
think
there’s
going
to
be
anything
you
won’t
be
 able
to
do.”
 “It
doesn’t
maHer!

That’s
not
what
I
want.”
 “I’m
sorry,
sweeJe.

I
know
this
is
important
to
you.

But
it’s
not
because
I
don’t
love
you
or
because
I
don’t
think
you
can
do
it.”
 “Well,
that’s
not
what
it
feels
like.”

Sabriel
slammed
her
hand
down
on
the
edge
of
the
table
and
walked
away.

  68. 68. But
Sabriel
was
back
to
her
usual
self
as
she
got
out
of
the
car,
poinJng
her
finger
at
whoever
she
wanted
to
show
at
the
moment.

 She
had
made
it
to
the
top,
securing
an
internship
that
would
last
unJl
she
lei
for
college.

  69. 69. Then
she
remembered
that
this
didn’t
mean
what
she
had
thought
it
would
have
meant
ever
since
she
overheard
the
 conversaJon
about
marrying
Will
to
Jan.



  70. 70. “I
mean,
it’s
hard
to
argue
when
Dad
keeps
saying
things
like
how
it’s
going
to
be
the
best
for
the
family,”
Sabriel
told
Arthur
over
 dinner.

“But
I
can’t
just
sit
down
and
accept
this.

I
don’t
know
how.”

  71. 71. “You
wouldn’t
be
you
if
you
didn’t
want
to
rule
the
world,”
Arthur
pointed
out.
 “Damn
straight.

And
Will’s
sJll
going
to
need
my
help.”
 “He’ll
need
my
help,
too,”
Arthur
said.

“It’ll
be
good
to
see
him
again.

Phones
go
up
tomorrow,
so
he’ll
be
able
to
visit,
and
then
 I’ll
call
over
to
Oldtown
and
get
ready
for
college.”

  72. 72. Sabriel
nodded.

“I’ve
decided
to
go
to
college
at
the
same
Jme
as
you,”
she
said.

“I
think
I’m
ready.”
 “Are
you
sure?”

Arthur
asked.
 “Duh.

I’ve
got
great
grades
and
I’m
at
the
top
of
my
career.

I
guess
I
could
go
for
a
few
more
scholarships,
but
I
feel
like
my
work
 here
is
done.

And
I
need
to
get
out
of
here,
Arthur.”

Sabriel
looked
around
at
the
wallpaper.

“I
feel
like
I’m
slogging
through
three
 feet
of
snow.

I
need
college
to
be
different.

I
know
it’s
not
going
to
all
be
smooth
sailing,
but
I
have
to
do
something
for
myself
 instead
of
silng
around
while
everyone
else
does
everything.”

  73. 73. “I
don’t
think
you’ve
been
silng
around.

You’re
working,
and
you
have
the
same
number
of
scholarships
as
me,
even
though
 you’re
younger.”


 Sabriel
waved
her
hand.

“Yeah,
but
that’s
just
doing
stupid
intern
stuff,
books,
and
chess.

I
need
an
adventure.

Silng
in
more
 classrooms
is
going
to
be
boring,
but
at
least
I’ll
be
on
my
way
there.”



  74. 74. “You’re
leaving
for
college
tonight?

That’s
great!”

Mal
clapped
his
hands.

“I’ll
miss
you,
but
I’m
so
glad
you’re
going
to
be
able
to
 go.

I
know
I’ve
said
this
a
dozen
Jmes,
but
I
really
wish
I
could
do
what
you’re
doing
now.”

  75. 75. “I’m
looking
forward
to
it,
too,”
Arthur
said.

He
wasn’t
sure
if
he’d
look
forward
to
college
as
much
if
he
didn’t
know
how
much
it
 meant
to
his
mom
and
dad.

Besides,
he
didn’t
feel
like
he
was
ready
for
a
real
job
yet,
and
this
was
a
way
to
put
it
off
for
a
while
 longer.

“It’s
a
big
world
out
there,
and
I
want
to
see
more
of
it.

Not
as
much
as
you
have,
or
as
much
as
Sabriel
wants
to,
but
just
 a
liHle
more
outside
this
house.”
 Mal
nodded.

“There
is
a
lot
to
see.

And—Sabriel’s
going
with
you?”

She
had
told
him
about
her
decision
earlier.

Even
though
 Mal
sJll
hoped
she
would
change
her
mind
and
stay
home
for
a
few
more
days,
he
didn’t
want
to
force
Sabriel
to
do
anything,
 even
if
he
could.
 “Yeah.”

  76. 76. He
realized
that
he
was
starJng
to
tear
up.

Will
would
come
back
to
him
soon,
but
now
all
his
children
were
going
to
be
gone.

 Mal
didn’t
want
to
think
about
how
empty
the
house
would
feel.
 “You
all
right,
Dad?”
 “I’m
happy
for
you,”
Mal
said,
giving
Arthur
a
thumbs‐up.

“But
it’s
going
to
be
sad
not
having
any
of
my
babies
around.”

  77. 77. “I’m
not
a
baby,”
Arthur
reminded
him.
 “I
know.”

But
someJmes,
he
sJll
seemed
so
young
to
Mal.

They
all
did,
especially
now
that
he
didn’t
move
around
the
house
as
 quickly
as
he
used
to.

  78. 78. He
tried
to
shake
it
off:
“Well—let
me
know
if
there’s
anything
I
can
help
you
with—”
 “Maybe
with
my
mechanical
skill?”

Arthur
asked.

“I’m
sJll
trying
to
get
that
scholarship.”
 “You
got
it.”

  79. 79. Across
the
room,
Chris
was
helping
Sabriel
with
her
skills.
 “That’s
amazing.”

Sabriel
gaped
as
she
looked
at
the
painJng.

“That’s
totally
awesome.”
 “Isn’t
it?”

Chris
asks.

“I
love
the
way
the
arJst
showed
the
waves
coming
in
to
the
sea.”
 “Why
don’t
they
paint
anymore?”

Sabriel
asked.
 Chris
shook
her
head.

“I
guess
it’s
just
not
something
anyone
thinks
about.”

  80. 80. Sabriel
looked
at
her
book
again.

This
wasn’t
the
first
normal
conversaJon
she’d
had
with
her
mom
since
Chris
had
shouted
at
 her,
but
Sabriel
sJll
felt
like
she
had
to
Jptoe
around
her
mom
a
lot.

She
did
not
Jptoe
very
well.
 “I
wonder
what
college
is
going
to
be
like,”
she
observed,
looking
away.

“Did
you
go?”
 Chris
shook
her
head.

“It
was
a
mistake,”
she
said.

“I
didn’t
think
I
needed
it.

I
was
preHy
stupid
when
I
was
younger.”

She
 turned
the
page,
and
they
focused
on
the
books
for
a
while.

  81. 81. Arthur
couldn’t
help
but
panic
as
he
pulled
the
miniature
rocket
out
of
the
surgical
dummy.

“What
do
I
do?”
he
asked
Mal.

  82. 82. “First
of
all,
take
a
deep
breath,”
Mal
said.

“Calm
down.

It’ll
just
get
worse
if
you
don’t
have
a
plan
for
fixing
it.”
 Arthur
nodded
and
took
the
breath.

“What
now?”
 Mal
talked
him
through
it.

  83. 83. “And
now
you
sew
him
back
up,”
Mal
instructed.

“See?

You’ve
got
it.

Everything’s
fine.”
 Arthur
exhaled.


  84. 84. “You’re
gelng
married?”

Brandon
laughed.

“That’s
funny.

Tell
me
another
one.”

  85. 85. Julian
narrowed
his
eyes.

“No,
really,”
he
said.

“Once
Will
gets
seHled
in
as
heir,
I’m
going
to
move
out
and
marry
BriHany
 Amana.”

  86. 86. “But…you’re
a
Romance
Sim,”
Brandon
said,
trying
to
wrap
his
head
around
it.
 “And
I
love
BriHany,”
Julian
answered.

“All
right,
I’m
not
sure
what
compelled
me
to
say
yes.

SomeJmes
I
think
this
is
as
weird
as
 you
do.

But
don’t
I
deserve
to
be
happy?”

  87. 87. “You
do,”
Brandon
said,
smiling.

“I’m
not
going
to
argue
with
that.”

  88. 88. ConGnue
to
the
next
part
of
the
chapter…


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