“There is another,” Finley took a shot in the dark. “One who can see and hear you just as we do now. As Melissa did once you passed.”
Finley waited, breath stilled, for the flicker of recognition to cross the other woman’s face.
“Jamie,” Abuelita whispered. It came with the gift of a small gasp. “Dear little Jamie.”
“Jamie. He can be taught,” Finley moved in for the kill. “Everything you gave Melissa, you can give to him.” She paused for dramatic effect. “Plus one more lesson that you didn’t have this time.”
“I can’t,” Abuelita crossed her arms for emphasis. Her eyes were glassy and unseeing. “This goes against the natural order of things. I won’t do this to Melissa.”
Finley did not speak. This was the final turn and the woman needed an enemy. Someone to argue points against. It might as well be herself.
Bothwa seemed to agree. His expressionless eyes stayed fixed the older woman as she muttered objections under her breath.
“If I leave her to Bothwa,” Abuelita addressed them finally. “I do not deserve the honor of being anyone’s guide.”
Bothwa cast a terrifying grin at Finley, but she held up a finger for him to wait.
“But I have failed with her,” Abuelita put her head in her hands and sobbed. “I have failed her!”
“Don’t,” Bothwa seemed unnerved for the first time.
“Take me, Bothwa!” Abuelita cried, flinging herself blindly in his general direction. “I no longer deserve to walk between the worlds.”