Necromancer that doesn’t know they’re a necromancer and thinks they’re just a really good emt

That is the funniest thing i have ever read

the thing was, she wasn’t going to be able to pass the recertification exam, and she couldn’t figure out why. annabelle studied. she practiced. she pulled out every trick and shortcut she’d learned during her two years as an EMT and none of it worked. she just – she didn’t get it. it made no sense.

“wake up,” she urged the dummy, pressing her hands to the pulse points on its wrists. “come on. what the fuck.”

“yeah, i don’t think that asking nicely is going to do the trick,” hank said, his eyebrows raised. his helmet, the special one they’d decorated for him with craft supplies from michael’s when he’d gotten promoted to firestation chief, sat askew on his head. “i can see now why they didn’t pass you.”

annabelle rolled her eyes. “it’s a psychological thing,” she said. “it’s like, you give the brain an instruction and it follows naturally. and the pulse-point thing always works. i don’t know why it’s not, like, in any of the books, but i swear to god it’s worked for me every time.”

it was true that annabelle had the best record on low body counts, which was good because she was the smallest person on the team not counting Georgie, who was a corgi. jake and lillian were always making fun of her for having been the shortest of their whole rookie class. but it hadn’t ever been a problem before; annabelle rarely had to carry anybody out, because she was good enough at getting them on their feet.

but none of that would matter if she couldn’t pass her stupid recertification exam, because they’d take her badge and she’d have to go be, like, a doctor or something.

hank blew out a long breath and sunk down to where she was kneeling on the station floor in full fire gear, giving CPR to the practice dummy, whom they called dierdre. there was a little light that went on when you’d saved its life. it had been a dull gray for an hour now.

“look, AB. i know you’re a good firefighter, and i know you know how to deliver CPR. just do it like you do it during an emergency. you’re overthinking it.”

“but this is what i do during an emergency!” annabelle cried, throwing her hands up. “i put my hands on their pulse points and i use psychological mumbo-jumbo and they just get up and walk!” 

hank blinked. “…really,” he said, voice flat. “people who’ve been inhaling smoke for half an hour just … get up and walk.”

“the brain is an incredibly powerful organ,” said annabelle, shrugging. “look man, i don’t know, okay? but it works. i haven’t had to actually do CPR in like a year and a half.”

he gave her a long, quiet loo and said, “well….huh,” before pushing himself back up onto his feet and frowning off into the distance. “keep practicing,” he said after a minute, and left her there.

hank switched her team.

“what the fuck, man,” she said, sliding into the truck next to him as the sirens went on. “i can’t get CPR on one fucking dummy and suddenly you don’t trust me to do my job without supervision?”

carl and bethany very carefully did not meet her eyes in the rearview from the backseat. bethany pulled a magazine from beneath the seat and said loudly, “look, carl, jennifer aniston and brad pitt are getting back together.”

“thank christ,” said carl. “i’ve been really worried about jen.”

hank gave annabelle the flat look that had gotten him promoted to firestation chief in the first place, the one that said i’m your dad and you don’t want to disappoint me. as always, annabelle wilted underneath it, sliding down in her seat and crossing her arms over her chest. it was a difficult feat in full gear but she wanted him to know she was feeling sullen.

“i trust you completely,” hank told her, his voice a light scold. “i want to see you in action so i can help you figure out what’s going wrong with the dummies. sometimes it’s hard for the brain to accurately remember everything that happens during a crisis.”

annabelle rolled her eyes. “i told you,” she said. “it’s just – it’s the same thing every time, I’m not like, blacking out.”

“great, then i’m about to learn a cool new trick,” hank said serenely, and pulled the truck out of the lot. annabelle kept her gaze focused out of the window, watching the city pass as carl and bethany talked loudly about which celebrities were dating which other celebrities and who wore what better. she tried to swallow down the nerves that tightened her throat. maybe the dummy was right. maybe she was doing something else and didn’t remember it. maybe the last two years had been a fluke and she had no business being a firefighter. maybe she was about to get fired.

there wasn’t a fire, though the alarm was going off. instead they found a bag of smoking popcorn and the collapsed heap of a forty-five year old bachelor type, down to just his boxers and a pair of slippers with llamas on them. he had no pulse. 

hank held carl and bethany back, directing them to deal with the smoke from the popcorn; annabelle he pointed toward the resident with a jerk of his chin. 

she sighed, kneeling by his side. she pressed her hands flat to his heart and then dragged them across his chest and down each arm, to his wrists. with her thumbs on his pulse point, she hissed, “let’s go, man. up and at ’em. you’re not meant to die in your underwear while cooking popcorn, come on.”

she held her breath for a few moments, conscious of hank’s eyes on her, and let out a long sigh of relief when she felt his pulse jump beneath her, watched his eyes flicker. “what the fuck?” he asked, voice a croak. “what happened?”

“you gotta eat more vegetables, bud,” annabelle told him, and looped his arm over her shoulders to help him get to his feet. she was so relieved she could have wept, but instead met hank’s eyes with a challenging glare. see? she thought. i told you. “let’s get you to the ambulance.”

“the bad news is that you have a lot of practicing to do if you want to pass your recert,” hank said without preamble, showing up at her apartment. she didn’t think she’d ever seen him in jeans before. it was weird. “the good news is i understand your problem now.”

annabelle stepped aside, beckoning him in. “what problem?” she demanded. “it worked! you saw it work. that’s the opposite of a problem.”

hank shrugged. he handed her a trifold that he’d clearly printed off at home. it said so you think you’re a necromancer. annabelle blinked down at it, and then up at hank, and then down at the trifold again. “i … don’t understand what’s happening here,” she told him honestly. 

“i’m not in the community and they’re kind of cagey, so i can’t really tell you a lot,” hank told her, stilted and visibly uncomfortable. “but i have a cousin who is, and um, i just want you to know that this doesn’t change anything. you’re still who you’ve always been and you have my complete support. we’ll figure out how to get around the recert. maybe i’ll – i can put you on admin duty to give you time to study. we’ll say it’s because of an injury.”

“hank,” annabelle said, with some urgency. “hank, this flier says the word necromancer.”

“yes,” agreed hank, looking relieved. “oh, good, you’ve heard of it already. i thought i was going to have to have the whole your body is changing talk.”

annabelle shook her head. “no, i – hank. you know that … um, you know that necromancy isn’t real, right? people can’t bring other people back from the dead. that’s crazy.”

“annabelle, not four hours ago you instructed a dead man to stand up and he did.”

“okay, he wasn’t dead, obviously. he was almost dead, at best.”

“no. he was dead.”

“i felt his pulse! it was very faint!”

“you called his pulse. no one else would have felt it, because it wasn’t there except in response to you.”

“hank, what the fuck.”

he shrugged. “read the flier,” he instructed. “and bring dierdre home with you. you’re going to have to practice a lot if you want to get recertified, considering you haven’t one time had to use any of the skills you learned the first go around.”

he bussed her temple as he went by, letting himself out of her apartment with a friendly wave. annabelle looked down at the flier in her hand with a frown. when she unfolded it, the first page said, everyone’s necromancy journey is different, but most people discover their gift by accident. have you ever brought a pet back to life? touched an elderly relatives hand and seen some of the color flood back into their face? or perhaps, more subtly, been able to keep cut flowers alive long past their purchase date?

annabelle looked at her kitchen table. she’d had the same vase of tulips on it since she moved in, three years ago. it was true they periodically started to wilt, but she usually just changed their water and they were fine, popping back up one after the other as she slid them into the fresh vase. 

“well shit,” annabelle said, letting the flier fall from her hands.



#storytime #death tw #embarrassment squick

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