Avery rubbed a tear away and chuckled again.  "Heh...  You always manage to come in at opportune moments, Jerome."

Jerome smiled.  "It's what I do."

Theresa looked at Avery.  "Who's he?"  She said.

"Jerome."  Avery moved to stand up.  "He used to be my friend when we were alive.   Jerome, this is Theresa."

Jerome raised his hand.  "Hey.  Good to meet you, Theresa."

"Good to meet you.  Your girl is a lifesaver.  She...  She showed me what I was doing wrong.  I understand why I'm stuck here, now."

"Well, that's funny of you to say..."  Jerome scratched his head.  "You two don't look the same anymore.

Instinctively, Avery and Theresa looked down at their bodies, which were shimmering.

Avery looked up.  "What is this?"

Jerome smiled.  "Enlightenment."

"Does this..."  Theresa looked dumbfounded.  "Does this mean that I can...  Leave?"

He nodded and held out his hand.

Theresa stared at the hand for a minute, as if she wasn't sure it was actually there.  Then she reached out her hand gently and took Jerome's.  

Suddenly, Theresa began to get brighter and brighter.  She turned to Avery.  "Thank you."

Avery shook her head.  "Thank you."  

And then Theresa was gone.  Jerome looked at Avery and extended his hand once again.  "Ready?"

"I'm not sure."  Avery pulled back.  "What's on the other side?"

"It differs depending on what you want or believe in.  For me?  Peace."  He held his hand out further.  "You'll get what you've always wanted."

Avery turned back to look at the dark abyss.   Shadows stared at her menacingly.  Silence rang throughout the earth.  There was nothing there.

She put her small hand inside Jerome's, and waited.  As the shadows died off one by one, the world began to burn bright like the sun.  Avery could feel her fears melting away, as the warmth of love and peace illuminated her existence.

And that's how Avery got her wings.

The End

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