The Black Craft

How can I fear the end when I know that where I am
headed is to a new destiny?
Being a reincarnated Witch isn't easy. 18-year-old Billie
is struggling with coming to these terms. On the eve before her
eighteenth birthday she discovers she and her family are Witches,
her best friend is an Empath and the school Principal is a
Vampire.

The first eighteen years of her life she's been kept in
the dark all so that she and her brother could have a normal
childhood. But her fathers' choices has led to disastrous
consequences. Billie must learn to conrtol her powers and gain
strength as the first Vampire is reborn in the small town of Penn
Gate.

A lot of questions surround the new kids, Astrid, Christian and
Desiree. Billie doesn't trust them and likes it even less
when her own brother, Brian, begins to date one of them. But
what can she do about it when she has to keep her own secrets
safe?

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1. Life In Penn Gate

Looking back on my life, I had to admit I had more dark days than I had good ones. There was always this constant feeling I had that I was on the verge of falling into a big black hole of despair. And the morning before my eighteenth birthday was no different.

In bed I awoke where my eyes first took in the faded peach of my bedroom walls before falling upon pictures of family on the vanity table opposite my bed. A picture of my parents sat there in a broken tarnished silver frame. They had died three years previously in the same car crash that left my cousin, Ruby, immobile in a hospital bed comatose for the past three years.

This house was my grandmothers, I moved in here with her shortly after being expelled from my old school over in Valley Stream. And just like any other morning, her soft, wavering voice called up to me from the bottom of the stairs.
“Billie, are you awake?”
“Almost.” I replied, pushing myself up on my elbows.
“Get dressed, sweetie, you slept in again. I’ll go fix you something to eat.”

Throwing my legs over the side of my bed, I lunged forth and collided with the wardrobe. The smell of freshly brewed coffee rose up through the house which teased me into full consciousness as I wildly grabbed at clothes from their hangers.

As I flipped on the lights I got a fright looking in the mirror to see the nest of hair resting messily on my head. Wrestling with my hairbrush I got almost all the tangles smoothed out and put on a little make up to hide the dark circles under my eyes.
“Billie!” Nana called again.
“Coming.” I shouted, grabbing my coat and bag from the desk chair.

 

Down in the kitchen, the phone rang briefly before Nana answered it, “You’re go for Jo.”
Sitting at the table, I smiled to myself while Nana conversed with the caller as she put a plate of toast and jam in front of me.
“Well, I’ll see you tonight. Yes, I’ll pass on your wishes. All right, good bye.” Nana took a slice of toast and bit into it before turning to me, “Rosie wants to wish you happy birthday, in case she doesn’t see you tomorrow.”
“That’s nice. How is old Rose?”
“Fine, she’s fine. I was wondering if you’d be all right with me inviting someone else to your party tomorrow.”
“Old Rose?”
“No, I was speaking with Valerie last night…”
I choked on a mouthful of toast, spluttering I asked, “Sh-she’s not coming, is she?”
“No, I meant Brian. Would you begrudge your brothers’ presence on your birthday?”
Sighing I said, “I suppose not.”
“Good girl.” She said patting my hand.

“I thought maybe we could go take some fresh flowers to the grave yard?”

“Before the party?” she asked.

“Yeah, then maybe we could go see Ruby?”

“It’s your birthday, Bill; we can do whatever you want to do.”

“Thanks, Nan.”

“Have you invited any of your friends?”

“Dulcie said she’d come over.”

“What about your other friends?  Tilly and Eve?” she asked inquisitively.

“Nana, you know how people round here think of us.”

“I’m sure I don’t know what you mean.  Have some bacon, dear.” She tried deflecting.

“They think we’re Witches, Nan.  Witches whom live in a spooky, haunted house.”

“And your fiends believe such eccentric stories?”

“In the last three years have you seen either one of them come further than the garden gate?”

Nana sat in high dudgeon for a few minutes before responding with, “Hurry up and eat your breakfast.”  Glancing at the clock she added, “You’re going to be late again.”

 

A couple blocks over on Willow Road stood Penn Gate High School.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t the only student running late. Just as I was about to pull into the last spot near the school entrance, an old white Dodge took it. The Dodge belonged to Faith Smith; loser, bitch and weirdo extraordinaire.
“Smooth move, bitch.” I muttered to myself.

 

Rushing into the school, I found there were crowds of fellow class mates still making their way to their classes and I breathed a sigh of relief as I reached my locker. Shoving my bag, and all else inside that I didn’t need, I slammed the door shut to find my two BFF’s either side of me.
“Jeez Louise, don’t do that!” I said, jumping.
“Or ‘good morning’ as some may say.” Tilly said taking a step back.
“Yeah, or ‘hello’ as others would say.” Eve added, backing her friend up.

“Sorry, you guys just startled me.”
“So?” Tilly asked, eyeing me curiously.
“So, what?” I asked.
“So, any calls last night?” Eve asked.
“Calls?”
“Yeah, you know when someone picks up a phone to call another person?” Tilly added sarcastically.

“Yeah, I know what you mean, Tilly. But no, I didn’t get any calls. Why?”

“May be he wanted to ask her face to face.” Eve said to Tilly over my head.

“Hmm… you could be right.”

“Hey, I’m right here.  Stop talking like I’m invisible.”

“You’ll find out soon enough.” Eve said, smiling brightly.

“Yeah, you’d better run along now classes are starting.”

“Where are you guys going?” I asked as they turned their backs on me.

“Free period.” They answered in unison.

 

The crowds were now thinning when I made my way to Biology.  Most of my fellow classmates were already seated at their usual tables with their usual lab partners.

 

I turned to walk to my own desk, normally empty unless we had assignments for which we’d needed partners, and one, of the normally unoccupied, seats was filled.

 

An unfamiliar face sat next to my own chair and I only knew he was a footballer because of the letterman jacket hanging on the back of his chair.

“Hey, Bill.” He said on my approach.

“Hi… guy.” I said earning a quizzical look from the jock.

“Listen, I was wondering if you wanted to be my lab partner.”

“Do we need partners?” I asked looking around for the teacher.

“No, I was just curious.”

“Ok, well, I’m gonna say no but thanks anyway.”

 

Still gazing at me quizzically, I wondered if he’d take the hint and go back to his own desk but he never did.  Allowing a long, exhausted sigh escape my mouth, I turned on my heel and went to the only other empty desk.

 

Jock guy got up out of his seat and came over to me with a slip of paper.

“What’s this?” I asked as he slid it over the table to me.

“My number.” He answered, to my surprise.  “If you’re not doing anything tonight I thought maybe we could go see a movie or something.”

“O-oh.  L-look I don’t even know your name.” I stammered nervously.

“Seriously?  We’ve had classes together for the last five years.”

“I only moved to Penn Gate three years ago.” I said, to his humiliation.

 

Some of the other kids nearby who’d overheard our conversation were snickering at both mine and Jock guy’s reaction.

“It’s Josh.” He said taking the number away.  “Josh Hutcheson.”

“Sorry!” I called as he returned to his own desk.

“Morning all, settle down.” Boomed Professor Brown as he entered the classroom shortly followed by Riley Smith.

 

Riley was Faith’s brother.  The Smiths were triplets; Faith, Riley and Willem.  They were sort of the school’s outcasts, just three of many, many more.  They didn’t have friends that I knew of, and only spoke to other students when they had to.

 

All too soon I realised that the empty table I’d moved to was actually Riley’s.  Making a bee line for his seat he looked up in time to see me getting out of his chair.

“Sorry, long story.” I apologised hastily.

“No stay where you are, Miss Black.  You’re going to be needing partners for today’s assignment anyway.”

 

As Riley and I both sat at the desk, I caught Josh darkly glancing at me.

“Okay,” boomed the Professor once more, “first I want you to watch this video.  It’ll be brief, I promise.  Then you get to work on these lovelies.” He added, slightly tipping a box to one side to let the class see all the disgusting dead creatures inside.

 

The video was anything but ‘brief’ which also meant that we didn’t have time to work on the ‘lovelies’ still boxed on Professor Brown’s desk.  Ten minutes into the video Riley leant towards me and whispered, “Not that it’s any of my business but why is Hutcheson giving you the devil eye?”

“The what!?”

“The Devil Eye.  He’s been glaring at you non-stop since the video began.” Riley said nodding towards Josh’s desk.

“He asked me out.”  When Riley looked at me a little lost, I went on, “I kinda turned him down.”

“Why?”

“Because I don’t know him.”

“Silence, please.” Professor Brown called from the front.

 

Near the end of the video, while the teacher wrote up our homework assignment on the board, Tilly and Eve peered in through the glass panel on the classroom door.

 

The words ‘What the hell?’ appeared on Tilly’s dark lips and, silently, I drew my index finger across my throat to indicate that I wasn’t happy with them before Riley flipped them off.

 

When the video ended the pair of them stormed off with disgusted looks on their pretty faces.

“I don’t know how you can be friends with girls like them.” Riley said at the end of the lesson.

“You don’t know them like I do.” I said putting books back in my bag.  “They’re actually really lovely.”

Riley snorted.  “If you say so.”

“I don’t have to explain myself to you and I won’t.”

“Those girls are bitches.  They’re the reason most kids at this school are miserable.”

“You have no idea what you’re talking about.  They’re lovely.”

“And you’re delusional.” He snapped.

“And you’re a first rate jerk!”

“Listen, you have no idea what they’re capable of.”

“You have no idea what I am capable of.” I muttered darkly, shouldering my bag.

 

Out in the corridor, Riley grabbed a hold of my upper arm and steered me away from the crowd.

“What the hell are you doing?  Let go of me.” I demanded.

“In here.” He growled, pushing me into an empty class room.

“You have got some nerve.” I shouted.

“Oh, pipe down!”

 

Storming towards the door, Riley blocked my path and I bounced of his rigid body.

“Let me go!”

“No.” he said, voice level and free of emotion.

“I have class.”

“It can wait.”

“Who the hell do you think you are?”

“Who the hell do you think you are?” he asked incredulously, his cold, grey eyes boring into mine.

“I don’t understand.”

“Don’t play innocent with me, I know what you are, Billie.”

“Riley, you’re scaring me.” I said, stepping further away from him.

“I’d really like to believe that.”  Adjusting the bag on his back he turned from me and headed for the door before saying, “I’ll see you tonight, Billie.”

“Tonight?”

“Well… we are partners now.  Aren’t we?”

 

Without another backwards glance he headed out into the deserted corridors.  Emerging from the class room, I watched Riley’s back walk to the end of the corridor before he left the school building.

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