I was terrified.
No reaper before, or since, scared me as this reaper did.
She entered Meredith’s studio in silence, and neither Meredith nor I spoke while the studio was prepared and the portrait taken. When Meredith finished, she took the ledger out, placed it on the table, and retreated to the safety of her workshop, leaving me alone with the reaper.
My hands trembled as I sat down, opened the ledger, and picked up a pencil.
The reaper walked to me, leaned down, and kissed me softly upon my cheek. Her warm lips grazed my ear and lingered there for a moment, before she whispered a single name.
A month later, they were still finding bodies in Texas.