Read by Jen Rhodes (of the Anomaly Podcast)
Originally published in Andromeda Spaceways #49.
The flowers of the forest outside the witch’s cottage bloomed black, with little shiny purple leaves. The villagers tried to say the blossoms themselves were deep purple, not a true black, but Garren was the second daughter of a witch, schooled from birth that she must never, never call things what she knew they were not.
Telven, Garren’s older sister, had the other half of the witch’s training, and that was to always, always call things what she knew they were not. Telven called an carven oak a man and made of him a husband, who was solid and dependable though not, perhaps, as swift as some. She called a cave a home, and made it cozy and neat, though she could not keep cheese in it more than two days for the mold. She called their mother wise and listened to her council.
The way of the second daughter was harder.