Best Witches Issue 7
Peyton and Finley had been shooting nonstop worried text messages as I had spent the day sleeping. Apparently, they had gotten ahold of Tyrone when they found out the bookstore was closed when I hadn’t responded. I knew I should have sent them a message, but I had passed out basically the moment I had gotten home.
“My place in an hour.” I texted them both once I had gotten up and gone through the messages. I shut my phone off and started up the bath, dumping too much bubble bath in. Today had been a lot. The bad dreams still haunted me as I slipped into the embrace of the warm water and bubbles.
I had gotten myself a glass of wine before I had run the bath and slowly took a sip, allowing each muscle to relax in the heat. The alcohol at least partially, mentally, helping me to breathe easier. What exactly did it mean to be the protector of a cursed book? Why did I have to handle this? Why couldn’t I just live my life trying to get a guy to return my calls and not be late to work? Heat rising to my cheeks with my anger at my grandmother, my great aunt, and all my dead family in general.
My untampered anxiety made my entire body itch. Finally, unable to stand it I got out and started to dry myself off, I wrapped myself in a towel and found something comfortable to brood in for the rest of the night. I chose a pair of workout pants with the name of my favorite high school drama tv show plastered across the waist, a monster’s tank top, and a too big fuzzy sweater topped of my mismatched look. Grabbing my glass of wine, I went to the living room and sat down on my couch staring dejectedly at the book I had left of the coffee table. Snapping my fingers, my favorite record started to play quietly.
What spell was in here that was so bad it managed to curse the book, my aunt, and eventually, I guess the entire family? One peak couldn’t be so bad, right? With that, I set down the wine and carefully lifted the heavy cover to the tome.
A light started spilling from the book again. The characters, lines, and words began swirling. Finally, the book settled on a page and the words finally started to form.
“The Hawthorne Book of Shadows,” the gold and bright green text spelled. The pages started to flip of the own accord to a page where a family tree began to bloom across the parchment. At the very bottom was my name. The names of my mother, father, and grandmother, appeared, then went back farther and farther until finally, lines moved from the tree to across the sketch of the united states, then the ocean, over towards Europe. More and more witches and warlocks’ names were laid down until it finally stopped on a name. It was hard to read, resembling old English. I could have sworn it said Anastacia Thornbridge. Snorting and shaking my head I slam the book closed.
“Stupid.” What was the book to spout something so stupid? I’m from a coven in the middle of Nebraska. I’m not related to Anastacia one of the most powerful witches in history. Anastacia Thornbridge was known to be THE witch of Europe. She had links to the black plague. To the start of rumors of witches flying brooms. It’s even rumored she was one of the first witches to gather the power of crystals and using wands to localize her energy. She is basically witch royalty. There is no way I’m related to her; it would have been bragged about at every family gathering from the beginning of our line if it was true. There is no way that would have been forgotten.
Not a moment too soon there is a knock on my door. Smiling I get up and let Peyton and Finley in. Questions and accusations start spilling out of their mouths the moment I open the door. Holding up a hand I wave for them to enter and move out of the way. They both settle me with looks that could kill, but they walk inside and settle themselves on my couch. Locking the door behind them, I snap my fingers and my fireplace lights. The night had turned chilly. The snow was finally melting but by the sounds of it more was on the way.
“Why in the world didn’t you call or text us first thing!” Finley snaps at me, unable to hold it in any longer. She had looked like she was about to pop with the need to make her grievances known.
I tell them the whole story, including the fact that I had passed out as soon as I had gotten home and how sorry I was. I had to promise it would never happen again before we could move on.
“Fine! Okay, well, tell us all about this book!” Peyton said. She had tried her best to keep her eyes off the book during all this but had been failing miserably.
“Well, Grandma said it’s cursed, and now I have to deal with it. I guess there are some big bad spells in here that got Great Aunt Edna cursed, and now I get to babysit it.” I said shrugging. “Steve and I are going to start going through it tomorrow to see what we can figure out about it.”
Peyton was nodding. “We can help too if you want.
Finley nods along with her. “Yeah, we can help!”
I smile at the two of them. “I’d like that, and we can all see what we can do about it. For tonight can we just forget it about it though? I want to try and get back to normal. I don’t like the idea I have to watch over some cursed book for the rest of my life, and for tonight I’d like to forget about it while I can.”
They nod, and Peyton pulls a bottle of wine out of her purse. “We came prepared!”
With a laugh, we pop the bottle open and start to dive into the date Peyton had over the weekend. The normalcy was beginning to make me feel a bit better. I wasn’t able to ignore the glances we all shot at the book throughout the night though.
Thank you, Sean Eike, for the image this week.