“If only you had used your words, Finley,” the woman sighed, her voice warbled with emotion. “Talked your way through to my daughter instead of casting against her.”
“See!” Finley grew bolder. “ She all but admits it!”
“I do not care,” Bothwa was impatient. He paced the length of the room as he spoke. “A sacrifice was stolen from me and I will have its equal or better.”
He leveled a glare at ‘abuelita.’
Finley scoffed to herself, thinking she was far more valuable than that withered bait, Sara Abate.
Abuelita shook her head and sighed again.
“There’s only one way to save your legacy, Abuelita Gonzales,” Finley said into the silence, then rethought her familiarity. “Ma’am.”
“I will not abandon Melissa,” Abuelita made a sour face. “Even though she was wrong, I will not leave her to an uncertain fate.”
“Well, one thing is for certain with Bothwa,” Finley dared to share a conspiratorial glance with the entity. “Melissa will learn her lesson.”
Abuelita gaped at Finley while Bothwa laughed aloud. The sound of his mirth caused both women to shiver.
Good, Finley thought, pushing through her fear. If they can conceive the idea, even if it repulses them, they can be convinced to accept it.
“It is the only way,” Finley reinforced, “Otherwise, you prove to Melissa that her actions have no consequences.”
“I- I can’t” Abuelita put her fingertips on her forehead as if to keep the idea from taking hold. “She is my heir, the keeper of our family’s legacy. She is all that I have.”