He repeats the words a second time, but they make no more sense than they did the first go round.
“You think it's your fault.”
Penny nods, copper hair catching the late afternoon sun, light hazy over the grass waving in the meadow. Somewhere in the background, Mina can hear bees humming on their way back to the hives. Everything else makes sense, everything except Penny.
“It's not your fault,” Mina says, because he doesn't know what else to say. There are so many words running through his head, but none of the arguments shape themselves into sentences. Penny runs her hands through the tops of the grass stalks, like fingers parting water.
“If it's my fault, then there's something I can do to fix it,” Penny says, as though that makes it any better. She looks up, catching Mina’s gaze, the blue of her eyes unrelenting. “I have to believe I can fix it.”
Mina stares right back at her. “Your mother wouldn't agree.” It's the most convincing argument he can think of, and he's sure it's true, just like the sky is blue and the sun is warm on his skin.
“She might not agree,” Penny says, “but she's not here right now. That's the problem.”