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Clock Magic

Holly Karlsson
Holly Karlsson

Holly is an American fantasy & science fiction author who loves magic, dragons, and old forests.

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Freya lays them down — one, two, three — porcelain faces glinting in the sunlight.

“What are they?” Rumie asks. “Dolls?” She’s hanging upside down, dark limbs draped over the couch.

Gently pressing Demeter’s bow against her chest, Freya glances back at her friend. “Gods,” she whispers.

Rumie scrunches up her eyes, going cross-eyed, and Freya laughs. “Gods?”

“Greek gods,” Freya says, eyes glowing. “You know, like the myths?”

“They’re really pretty.”

“They’re really old.” Freya’s voice is reverent.

“Are they your Gran’s?”

Freya nods and arranges Poseidon’s trident over his head.

“Are you going to get in trouble? What if you break one?”

“Can you keep a secret?” Freya asks. She holds out her finger, waits until Rumie pinkie-swears.

“Cross my heart,” Rumie says, scrambling right side up.

“They’re alive, Ru.”

“Alive? Like …” Rumie’s tongue darts out to moisten her lip. “Like Chucky?”

Freya laughs. “No, of course not. They’re gods. They like to make things, not stab things.”

“Make things?”

Freya’s eyes drift to the clock high on the wall, and she grins. “Whenever there’s a full moon. It’s like … it’s like … well, just wait.”

Rumie scrambles down onto the ground and rests her chin on her knees. “What makes them come alive?” she asks, brown eyes wide.

“I don’t know,” Freya says, “but it’s magic.” She shifts Zeus into place, wipes a smudge of dust off his pale cheek.

The clock chimes — one, two, twelve times.

“Watch, Ru. Watch.”

NOTE:
Day 10! #wordtober words were ‘pattern’ and ‘Demeter’ based on the official Inktober prompts and Holly Dunn’s Greek Mythology list. Beautiful clay faces from EarthShards on Etsy.
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