Before Bailey reached the end of the block, a portal opened in front of them. Rebecca stepped through, anger evident in her expression.
“I thought I would get further away before you noticed.”
“You are leaving without saying goodbye. Again. What the fuck, Bailey?”
“I don’t belong here. I figured it would be easier to just fade away.”
“Easier for you, maybe.”
“No, easier for you Rebecca!” More anger came through in their voice than Bailey intended. “You have Marie. David. Who knows what else you have to deal with regarding your cult. Family. Whatever. You don’t need me around complicating life even more.”
“Quit it. Quit trying to decide what’s best for me. Especially since you always decide it’s best for you to leave.”
“I saved your life after your dumb plan. You, of all people, know what that cost me. I did it for you. And I’d do it again without hesitation. Now, I need to go. Just accept that.”
“Why? Why can’t you stay?”
Bailey chewed on the inside of their lip. “I can’t be what you need. What you want.”
“What do you think that is?”
“A mage who embraces their gift. A friend who isn’t . . .” Bailey’s voice trailed off.
“You don’t know how to ask for what you want, so you hide behind excuses of what you think I want.”
“I betrayed you! How do you expect me to face you after that! You should hate me! Go back to your friends! To the people who fought for you!”
Overcome by their own emotions, Bailey tried to hurry away, but Rebecca grabbed their shoulders to stop them.
“You were right. I do know what it cost you, so I know you fought for me, too. You were there for me when I needed you most.”
Rivers of tears were streaming down their face as they shook Rebecca off. Half running, Bailey quickly moved away without looking back. Rebecca just stood, helplessly watching them disappear.