16 y/o Katrell lives on the brink of homelessness, until she discovers she can raise the dead. Turns out, people will pay top dollar to see their loved ones again. But when the dead develop a taste for blood, Katrell must decide just how much her money is worth. Especially since Katrell is next on their list.
I’m painting Will’s nails when she asks me to talk to her dead grandma.
“Didn’t we talk to her last week?” I don’t look up from my work as I paint a coat of hot pink. Will’s nails are short and brittle from nervous chewing, so it takes extra effort to make them look good.
“It’s been a month, I think.” Her voice is a hesitant whisper. “Katrell, please? I wanna tell her about the contest.”
I finish the second layer before looking up at her. Will’s eyes search mine, brimming with cautious excitement. She’s always been like this—desperately hopeful, but expecting someone to crush her at the same time.
Will’s big. Not just heavy, but physically imposing. Five foot ten, huge arms that could hurt someone if she wanted. But she always sits with her shoulders hunched, like she’s trying to take up as little space as possible. A bear who doesn’t know she’s been let out of her cage.
I lean forward and blow gently on her nails. Summonings aren’t difficult, and Will never asks for much. At least she has someone to summon. My only family is Mom; I don’t have any aunts or cousins or dead grandmas. Will has a whole host of dead people to talk to, which is better than no family at all.
I’ll do it for her.