Chapter 5

Afterwards

Daniel later explained, "If the Circe of myth could change men into beasts, it's no stretch for the real Circe to have changed me back into a living man."

"And that's the only explanation I get?"

"Ma cherie, perhaps we could explore other mysteries?"

"I think I should just call you Captain Distraction, not that I'm complaining. Did you seal up Scruffy's door so that cat that's been living in the yard would stop leaving dead things by our bed?"

"Of course, much as it pains me to hamper Bast's freedom."

"Her name is Blackie! We'll not tempt fate by naming another cat after a magical being."

"Far be it from me to remind you that a rose is a rose by any other name, Mrs. Gregg. You seem to be reveling in distracting me from distracting you."

"Daniel, you've distracted me since the moment I first laid eyes on your portrait."


Seasons passed, and one evening a very pregnant Carolynn called Candy and Jonathon to the living room and told them, "Did you know when your father was alive, he kept so many pictures of you two in his office that his boss thought he had a huge family?" Daniel glanced in, smiling. She suspected he just wanted to hear about Robert himself, but she kept talking. She watched Blackie sinuously weave figure eights around Daniel's ankles as he stood in the doorway, listening.

Carolynn and Daniel did keep a secret or two from each other. She told him about the dream and how she believed Circe sent it, but she did not tell him how much Circe had frightened her at first, or about the death within the dream. She didn't think she could bear the look in those proud eyes of his if she told him. He didn't tell her he knew anyhow, and how it had taken human tears to stop Circe's reliving of her last moments. He didn't tell her the boys who been responsible had no descendents. He did tell her he knew Circe was at peace, but not what regions he had traveled through, following that orange plume of a tail like a flag.

In the fathomless reaches of the heart, any heart, not just human or ghost, all things are possible.