The next morning, Hope ran to the Sanderson house without hesitation. She looked around for a moment, calling out softly. "Miss Winifred?"
Winifred stepped toward her slowly, smiling softly. "Look Hope! We did it!"
Hope blinked as she looked up at her. "Miss Winifred! You're beautiful!"
Winifred smiled down at her as she knelt at her side. "It's been a long time since someone called me that. Are you ready?"
Hope bit her lip. "Yes. But can't Miss Mary join us? She was really nice to me. M-Miss Sarah too... I think she'd like that."
Winifred smiled, calling Sarah to them as she lead Hope outside. "I'm afraid last night took a lot of Mary's energy. She's not quite up to helping you this morning."
Hope frowned, turning back toward the house. "I want to see her. Just for a moment. Please Miss Winifred. I bet that would make her feel better."
Sarah nodded. "You know how Mary loves children Winnie. Maybe seeing a child would help her."
Winifred frowned. "I don't know. I don't think she needs company."
Sarah frowned. "She didn't seem that tired when we finished."
Winifred nodded. "But you know she worries about every little thing."
Sarah tilted her head. "She does?"
Winifred nodded. "Yes!"
Silently, Hope slipped back into the house, walking to Mary's side slowly. "I'm sorry I couldn't help last night. I was really looking forward to being able to learn from all of you, not just Miss Winifred."
Mary stood and looked around, frowning. "Where are Winnie and Sarah?"
Hope smiled a little. "They went outside. I don't think Miss Winifred wanted to disturb you. She knows you need to rest after-"
Winifred cut her off as she opened the door and stood just inside. "Hope! I said we ought leave her to rest... dost thou not comprehend?"
Mary frowned. "I'm fine Winnie. Thou are not being honest with thy apprentice. And I'd like to know why."
Winifred sighed, catching Hope's hand and starting to guide her away. "Be honest with thyself Mary. Do us all a favor and-"Hope pulled her hand away, frowning. "No Miss Winifred. I want you to answer her. Why did you lie to me?"
Winifred frowned, making a grab for her, but the child was too fast for her and instead returned to Mary's side, reaching to take the woman's hand in her own. "What is this? Why are you so taken with her?"
Hope scowled, looking up at first one, then the other and letting her eyes lock with Winifred's. "Because she's good to me. Honest. I think you hate that. And you know what else? She told me about the things you do. And I think you should be honest about more than just this. You're so much younger now... so beautiful. I bet you don't want her here anymore."
Winifred frowned. "What's this? She is my sister! Of course I want her!"
Hope shook her head. "No. I think now that you've had your way, she'll be nothing to you. I bet you only wanted her because she could find children."
Mary frowned, shaking her head as she pulled back. "She's right Hope. Winnie would never abandon me."
Hope frowned. "You're sure about that? She's been acting strange."
Winifred called her spell book to her and began to search through it, eventually finding a spell she thought would work. "I really wanted this to work. But clearly thou hast no respect for thine superiors."
Hope smiled sadly up at her, noting the sadness in Mary's eyes as she went to stand at her sister's side though she seemed to have lost her will to stand up to her. "Go on. Curse me if you like. Show her you don't care what she wants."
Mary looked down, focusing on the book as her sister prepared to cast the spell. "Winnie is wise. She was gracious enough to give thee a place here. Thou hast disappointed thy mistress."