Love Spells, A Weekly Serial by L. Casebeer

Angelique emerges from foster care to discover that the fast-moving world of lust on the Internet is more than she bargained for in Love Spells, a cautionary tale of looking for love in the tech age.

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7. Episode 36

Angelique had overheard Cynthia Ann’s sheriff cousin telling her to get rid of Angelique, that she was nothing but trouble. Angelique had texted Robbie that she would start walking down the road in the morning to meet him; that he didn’t have to come back to Cynthia Ann’s property after she had waved him away with a shotgun. Meanwhile, readers voted that Robbie had never received Angelique’s message since he had been sleeping off a hangover at a friend’s house.

Episode 36

Confusions abound. Angelique overheard only part of the conversation between Cynthia Ann and her cousin, in which he told her Angelique was more trouble than she was worth. She had been angry and headed back to the house, with the sheriff’s words ringing in her ears and echoing during the night and next morning. She had missed Cynthia Ann’s response that throwing people out wasn’t a very good strategy for life or for policing.

Robbie wanted to hook up with Angelique. He was clear about that. He found her red hair hugely attractive. But in spite of the gun rack in his truck, he found Cynthia Ann with a shotgun very threatening. And what he had not told Angelique in their brief online flirtation was that he was camping out with his buddy and currently living in a tent.

Online flirtation being a skill Angelique had been honing since she had left the orphanage where she had been living, she had told Robbie what she thought he wanted to hear. Up to this point, she had failed to mention the baby. All Robbie knew was that he had been meeting her the evening before.

So we find that Angelique did, in fact, put a backpack together, fed the baby, wrapped him in a sling she secured across her chest, and started down the road. She had been walking for more than three miles before the sun rose high enough to cast shadows across the road from the old live oak trees. She had expected Robbie to appear any moment over the horizon of the long flat road, the same Robbie who was sleeping off the hangover and trying to forget about Cynthia Ann and the shotgun. She stopped in the shade, shifted the baby, and pulled the phone out of her jeans. She texted Robbie and asked where he was, and waited for a response. None came.

She waited, then sent another text. For the next mile, she walked a ways, texted, waited, then walked some more.

Robbie’s buddy finally punched him. “Your phone keeps going off! Do something.”

When Robbie discovers Angelique’s increasingly irritated texts, he makes an important decision. What does Robbie do? Go to http://serealities.com to vote on what happens next.

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