“I’m home!” Emi yelled, throwing her bag through the door and walking in after it. She always made sure something went through the doorway before she did — a habit she never explained to anyone.
Emi wasn’t a common kind of witch. She didn’t deal in magic that you could learn from a textbook or store-bought grimoire. She pieced her magic together carefully in small daily rituals and habits (or rather, she made her magic when she broke those habits. The day Emi walked through her apartment door without a person or an object going through in front of her, the entire building would likely burn down).
Of course, that meant Emi moved through the world gingerly, always taking care never to trigger one of her own unspells. Failing to complete one of her regular unspelled actions could mean anything from triggering an extremely dangerous reaction (like burning down the building) to simply losing years of work put into creating a certain unspell that she’d meant to use at another time.
And because Emi was an uncommon witch, it was no surprise that she’d ended up dating Mona, who was an extremely uncommon witch herself.
Mona was currently sprawled over most of the couch, watching Emi come in. The book in her hand suggested she was reading it, but her eyes tracked Emi into the apartment over the edge of the cover instead. “Hey, love. How’d the interview go?”
Mona had called Emi any number of nicknames over the years, from Queen Of The Dead And Also Everyone Else Probably to Actual Cutest Bumblebee, but she rarely went for anything as simple as “love”, so Emi was instantly suspicious.
She raised an eyebrow at her as she shrugged out of her jacket and put it over the back of the same chair as always. Her favorite chair, the one Mona had endowed with extra comfortableness she’d stolen from several other seats. “Pretty good, I think. Everything okay here?”
“Of course,” Mona said, but the guilty tone of voice made it clear something had happened that Emi wasn’t going to like.
Emi shot her another questioning look but let it go. In the kitchen, Iago was sitting on the counter, where he wasn’t allowed to be, cleaning one paw smugly. She petted his head, and then gently tried to nudge him off the counter.
“Fuck,” said Iago.
Emi stared at her cat. “What?”
Iago stretched and purred. “Mrrrrrrrrrrfuck.”
Emi turned slowly from Iago to Mona, who was now leaning against the fridge and guiltily twisting strands of her bright pink hair.
“I can explain,” she said.
“Why can my cat curse?!”
“Our cat,” said Mona. “And it’s Greg’s fault.”
Emi scooped Iago up, despite his loud (and fuck-filled) objection, and hugged him to her chest. “How is our cat cursing Greg’s fault? Who’s Greg? That rude guy from your Psych class? There is literally no way he taught Iago to curse.”
“He can’t really curse,” Mona said. “That sort of implies he can say all curse words, I think. He can only say fuck.”
Mona spread her hands pleadingly, coming closer. “It’s not a big deal, Em, come here—”
“No forehead kisses until you’ve explained this,” Emi said, lifting Iago up like a shield against her taller girlfriend.
Mona made a face and kissed Iago’s head instead, then took him from her. “It was an accident. After class I took out my hearing aids because I had a headache, right?”
Emi nodded. Mona seemed to take most opportunities to not wear her hearing aids. It was a trade off between Mona hearing things the first time they were said and Emi being able to kiss her ear without making her hearing aids squeal, so — pros and cons.
“So Greg said something to me and I couldn’t tell what it was after asking him to repeat it about five times — he’s a mumbler, okay? And he kept not speaking up. Yet somehow he gets to be annoyed with me instead of the other way around. So when I finally get my hearing aids back in to find out what he wanted, he decided it was time to make a super funny joke.” Her voice dripped with sarcasm, triggering an emphatic meow from Iago. “Thanks, Go. He is an asshole.”
Emi tapped her fingers on her arm. “Iago is not your ally until you explain this.”
“He asked if another snatcher stole my hearing. Thought it was really clever.”
“Oh, yikes,” Emi muttered without meaning to. Mona often got snide comments about her unusual power, but this was another level of jackassery.
“So,” Mona said, “I stole his ability to say fuck.”
“And while I support your right to deal with Greg, that doesn’t explain Iago,” Emi said firmly. “He didn’t do anything to you, he doesn’t deserve this.”
Mona’s look said that the rest of the story should have been obvious. “Well, then I had double the ability to say fuck after I took Greg’s, didn’t I? I was cursing all over the place on the walk home. I couldn’t keep it. So I just tossed it to Iago. And I think he’s having the time of his lives.”
“Take it back.”
“Greg doesn’t deserve to have it back,” Mona said petulantly.
“You don’t have to give it back to him, but Iago can’t keep it.”
Mona considered this. “I could probably transfer it to an inanimate object without a mouth to use the ability. But it always takes a bit of arguing to get non-sentient objects to take on the attributes of sentient things.”
“I’m sorry, non-sentient things are sentient enough to argue with you about accepting attributes?”
Emi rubbed her eyes. “That’s not… sure, it’s obvious. As long as I don’t end up with a cursing tissue box.”
“Oh, I won’t give it to the tissue box,” Em said, carrying Iago out of the kitchen. “I’m already storing your snores in there. Trust me, it’s got no more room left.”
thx for reading about my messy witch couple and their awful cat, you can read another not-story about them here if you want