Despite her declining condition, despite the doctor’s diagnosis of “terminal,” she knew better.
Elise had holed up in her brick townhouse. She locked the door to her bedroom, giving the magic time to gain strength.
When the doubters came knocking, she laughed. As they threatened to break down the door, she staggered over to the window, threw the panes open to glorious sunshine and a choir of birds singing in her honor. She stepped onto the windowsill, bare feet on warm wood.
The door flew open behind her.
She turned to offer the humans one last smile before white, feathered wings burst from her back, and she launched into the sky.