“We got Victor.  Not sure if I like how Lisa sprung that on me, but we got him.  We were thinking you could try borrowing his power, see if you don’t get any permanent boosts.”

Too late, Taylor, Aisha already told him this.

“Sure.  Aisha mentioned that.  I don’t know if it’ll work.”

It’s worth a shot.

“No?”

Brian tried to organize his answer about why in his head.  What had Bonesaw said?  Something about passengers.

Why would something about the passengers make this not work? Do you need Victor’s passenger to get the permanent boosts, with those counting as a passive part of the power even after you’ve stopped doing the active draining?

He glanced over at Taylor, who was busy with the sides, something with sweet potato, some parsnips.  She looked over her shoulder at him, and he was struck with the image of her lying on the ground, Bonesaw straddling her, her forehead a bloody mess, a small electric saw grinding through the bone of her skull with an ear-splitting whine.

Here we go.

And this one might hit especially hard, because this is the trigger. Not what happened to him, but the thought that it might happen to Taylor and the rest of his friends.

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