By the time Ava and Cece returned, night had truly fallen. Abe sat on the sidewalk by the entrance, bathed in the white light of a lamp which buzzed against the striped awning. He stood abruptly when he saw it was them.
“How’d it go? What happened?”
"It’s her,” Ava replied. Her face was pale and emotionless above the colored bottles in her arms. After almost an hour, all Allie had been able to say was Ava’s name, over and over again. Then she had fallen asleep.
Abe’s mouth fell open. He tried to say something, but stopped himself. “Come on,” he finally croaked, taking some of the bottles. “We’d better find somewhere to stay.”
"We have to go back tomorrow,” Ava said numbly. “Take these back to the little house. Into the attic, to find the papers.” Abe nodded, but then stopped in his tracks.
"Ava,” he said, holding up a green bottle, “There’s already papers in these.”
Ava froze--she hadn’t even thought to actually examine them. She’d just assumed that, since they were empty before, they’d be empty still. But Abe was right: each of the bottles were holding not one, but two pieces of parchment.