Leigh rolled her eyes.
“Relatively speaking, of course,” she said. “What I’m getting at is that when I use my powers, there’s a specific technological process at work. But when you use my powers, there’s something else going on. You’re mimicking the effect, but not the cause. Am I making sense?”
“Not really,” Frederica and Angela said together.
“Basically I’m just starting to suspect that you two are far more powerful than either of you realize,” Leigh said. “Which means Fred has just taken another step toward unlocking her true potential.”
She studed the board and moved her bishop two spaces.
“And all it took was for me to almost die,” Frederica said.
“Yeah, well, omelets and eggs, you know?” Leigh said with a wink.
Angela jabbed her index finger toward Frederica.
“If you get yourself killed trying to upgrade your powers I will kick your ass.”
“I’ll be good,” Frederica said. “I mostly just wanted to make sure there’s nothing wrong with me. I wasn’t actually planning on doing it again.”
“Well, let me know if anything else changes,” Angela said, sliding her queen forward. “If this actually becomes a problem, we’ll figure it out together.”
“Oh look, here comes the other one,” Leigh said, glancing over Frederica’s shoulder.
Frederica turned as Josephine squeezed through the crowd and approached the table.
“Oh, hey,” Frederica said. “I didn’t realize you were here, too.”
“I came with Angela,” Josephine replied. “Kay’s boss has an office upstairs. I went up for an interview.”
“Yeah?” Frederica said. “How’d it go?”
“I still need to pass a background check,” Josephine said, “but she’s pretty sure she can find a place for me.”