The sugar runes scatter.
The lights flicker.
And the witch is holding -
"I guess I'll grant you that there are retellings of the Bible for children."
"So I'm led to understand."
Shrug. "I didn't have a very positive relationship with those when I was young."
"No? Not charmed by all the animals lining up to board the ark?"
"Not charmed by the part where everyone else died."
"The kids' versions don't dwell on that part, do they?"
"No but I got it anyway."
"Anyway, you can sleep here in the attic, go ahead and turn on the thermostat if you need to, it's by the second floor landing, my room's the one with the green door if you need anything."
"Alright." Pause. "Could I use the shower? I'm feeling slightly grimy, what with the past few days of trekking."
"Yeah, go for it, it's the one with the horizontal door handle instead of a round one."
So he goes to have a shower and - doesn't really have pyjamas, so he'll put on some regular clean clothes - it occurs to him partway through that process that she probably wouldn't mind if he was just naked but on the other hand it's not actually warm enough for him to sleep naked so whatever - and to sleep he goes.
In the morning breakfast is eggs and bacon.
The falcon hops over to where the other daemon is to incline his head in greeting.
"Good morning. Were you warm enough?"
"Yes. We had not slept in a house in a while, it was a nice change."
"You're lucky I live in a house at the moment, after my apprenticeship is over I'm probably going to be at least part time on clan lands sleeping in the snow when I'm not at my dad's."
"We've dealt. Didn't super know where we'd end up finding the alethiometer so had to be prepared."
"Surely you don't carry gear for all weather at all times?"
"Well, no, but 'warm enough for most likely cold places' and 'light enough for most non-deserts' isn't that hard to fit in a bag."
"On top of all your food and stuff? I dunno, that sounds really heavy but maybe I just don't have a good sense of pedestrian carrying capacity since I'm so seldom a pedestrian."
"I have four T-shirts, two pairs of jeans, two pairs of sweatpants, two pairs of shorts, one sweater, one heavier sweater, some underwear and socks, these shoes, a pair of boots, that's like sixty percent of that bag I left upstairs."
"You must pack very efficiently. How many eggs do you want?"
"Four," says her teacher, wandering into the room stark naked and combing her hair with her fingers.
"All right," says Isabella, and she cracks four for her teacher.
"Where'd you come from?" the other witch asks Sadde.