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With one quick motion, Penn reached in and ripped out Gia’s heart. Aggie screamed for her to stop, but it was already too late. Gia opened her mouth, but no sound came out. She just moved her lips soundlessly, like a fish underwater. When Penn began tearing off her head, Thea closed her eyes.

Thea lowered her head, but she still heard the sound—the tearing of flesh, the cracking of bone, and the wet thud as Gia’s head fell to the floor. Those would be the sounds she’d hear in her nightmares for years to come.

Throughout the whole ordeal, as her sister murdered Gia for a crime that Thea herself had committed, Thea had said absolutely nothing.



The curse of the minotaur and Asterion stuck in Gemma’s head. When he had destroyed the scroll, all the minotaurs had turned to dust. It had been like the curse had never existed.

As soon as they got back from dropping Harper off at college, Gemma knew she had to find the scroll—at any cost. It wasn’t just about her anymore—Alex needed her to do this, too.

She had some time with her dad, who seemed to be taking Harper’s leaving a bit harder than any of them thought he would. They went out for dinner at Pearl’s after they’d gotten back, and Brian had floundered with the conversation. He seemed kinda lost.

After supper, they went home, and Gemma had immediately called Thea. It was in the guise of going for a late-night swim, but she really wanted to find out what the sirens were up to, and see when the best time would be for her to sneak in.

Thea hadn’t been interested, but in between complaining about Lexi and talking about play rehearsal, Thea made a confession—they were going out of town the next day to feed. It had been a while since Thea had eaten, and she was growing restless.

Gemma tried not to think about what that meant, that somebody would have to die to feed the sirens. She knew that they had to eat, and the small comfort she could take from it was that they’d cut down and they were going outside of Capri to find food.

But the sooner she found the scroll, the sooner she could stop the sirens, and then nobody else would ever have to die. And she had finally found her chance.

Gemma woke up Thursday morning with a renewed sense of purpose. She waited around the house for as long as she could. Thea hadn’t told her what time the sirens planned on leaving, but she imagined that Lexi and Penn weren’t exactly morning people, so she waited until early afternoon.

When she finally decided it was late enough, she hopped on her bike and rode down to the library at the center of town. She wore a dress, so she pedaled carefully but quickly.

She’d left without telling Daniel—specifically going against their agreement that she would tell him everything. But he seemed to have something heavy weighing on him, and if this went well, none of them would have to worry about the sirens for much longer. It would be better if she just dealt with this on her own and got as few people involved as possible.

The skies overhead had been darkening all morning, and Gemma felt a few sporadic raindrops as she pedaled. Not that she minded. The air was thick and warm with humidity, and it would be nice if the rain came and cooled things off.

Gemma locked her bike up outside the library, and when she opened the door, it felt like stepping into a refrigerator after being outside. The library was relatively busy, thanks to the combination of stifling heat and the impending storm.

Marcy sat at the desk, her head tilted back as she attempted to balance a pencil on the spot between her top lip and her nose. She was apparently oblivious to the patrons around her and didn’t even notice Gemma until she walked right up to her.

“Hey, Marcy.”

Marcy lost her concentration and the pencil dropped. She shrugged and sat up straighter, and Gemma leaned on the desk.

“Are you here applying for the job?” Marcy asked. “Because we have a vacancy now, and one Fisher sister is probably as good as another.”

“That’s actually not a bad idea,” Gemma said. “Remind me to apply when I have more time.”

“You don’t have time now?” Marcy arched an eyebrow. “Then what are you doing here?”

Gemma smiled at her. “I came to ask you a favor.”

“I’m not buying you booze or cigarettes,” Marcy replied immediately. “Harper would kill me if I did, and they’re both lame habits. If you want to get a tattoo, though, I know a guy who does underage tattoos.”

“How do you know a guy?” Gemma asked, momentarily distracted from her mission. “Do you have a tattoo?”

Marcy stood and lifted up her shirt. She angled herself to the side so Gemma could see the tattoo right above her hipbone. It was of Ursula from The Little Mermaid. Her tentacles were twisting over Marcy’s hip, and Ursula smiled broadly with blood-red lips and winked.

“You have a Disney character?” Gemma asked in shock.

“She’s a sea witch, and she’s badass, okay?” Marcy pulled her shirt down, then sat back in the chair. “Hey, are there such things as sea witches?”

Gemma shook her head. “I’m pretty sure there aren’t.”

“Lame.” Marcy scowled in disappointment. “It would’ve been sweet if you could just make a deal with a sea witch. I mean, you’d give up your voice to stop being a siren?”

“I would. But I don’t think that’s going to be an option.”

“Life would be so much simpler if it worked out like a cartoon,” Marcy said, her monotone sounding wistful for a moment.