It happened again–Grim came for Jonah. This time wasn’t due to hysterics-induced heart failure but the result of age. Jonah earned the long-lived trait by completing the body builder aspiration, and he lived a very long and active elderhood. But Grim came nonetheless one dark evening, and Jonah heard him call his name.
Magdalena wasn’t going to have anything to do with it.
“Excuse me, sir,” she said to the robed figure with the sickle–OK. It was Grim. She’d met him before, the last time he came for Jonah, when she was still a child. “Excuse me, Mr. Reaper. Please check your calendar. I think you have the wrong date. I don’t think today is the day scheduled for Jonah.”
And what do you know? She was right!
Grim checked his tablet. He’d been precipitous. He excused himself.
And Jonah rose up in a whirlwind of light!
The whirlwind became a flash.
Jonah’s body arched with the energy burst.
And look! He had a hand!
He had two!
And two legs, and a chest, and an abdomen, and two lungs, and a heart, and he was breathing, and his pulse was beating, and everything seemed to be working OK. He was spared.
Oh, what it felt like to be alive!
Grim checked his tablet again and found the real reason he’d been called to this address. It was for Pierre, the old rooster.
The rooster had led a good life and didn’t need anyone to plead for him. He felt quite ready to trot up to Grim, to receive one last scratch under his wings, and then to be scooped up by Death himself.
One flash–a burst of light that contained every rooster memory all the way back to the first peck out of an eggshell.
And Pierre the Rooster was no more–at least not on the physical plane.
Kiana sought out Magdalena in the studio and gave her a big hug.
“Thank you,” she whispered. “You gave Jonah a little more time.”
“You taught me,” Magdalena said. “It was no more than what you did.”
“Yes, but it takes courage,” replied Kiana.
“You taught me that, too.”
And so things changed between Jonah and Magdalena.
He no longer felt quite so wary of her–she was his hero.
“I’ll never be able to thank you enough,” Jonah said to her the next morning.
“There’s nothing to thank me for,” Magdalena replied. “I just did what needed to be done.”
“Still,” he said, “you did it. That takes moxie. There’s not many that would stand up to Death.”
Magdalena wasn’t so sure. It had seemed simple to her. There was the right thing to do, and when it was that straightforward–the right thing, or the wrong thing–then you do the right thing. It’s only proper.