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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9. New In Town

I was awakened by the feel of gelled hair scratching my nose, it seemed that Brian had also napped and his head was resting against my cushion although he was still sitting on the floor.  Almost three hours had passed since Brian lay me down on the couch.  I pulled my head away ever so slightly and noticed some markings on the back of his neck, had he gotten a tattoo?  Softly brushing his hair away to get a better look I saw there were black faded marks on his neck that resembled the tattoo on my left forearm.  It looked just like the moon and three stars but not as new as mine, it was more like the outline of a drawing that wasn’t fully coloured in.  I caught Nana’s eye sitting in the chair across from me and signalled for her to come over, I breathlessly rolled his head forward so his chin was resting on his chest to give Nana a good look at what I was trying to show her.  A sharp in take of breath from her was more than enough to wake him up.

 

Nana backed against the wall and seemed to disappear into it whilst I blinked and disappeared myself before Brian turned to see me staring at the back of his neck.  I had teleported into the kitchen and made my way down the hall next to the wall where Nana seemed to disappear into.

“The loft.” I whispered softly.

Making my way up the stairs I heard the floorboards creaking behind me as if an invisible person were walking up behind me.  When I reached the loft I put my fingers to my lips when Riona and Rowanne turned to see me walking through their door.  The door swung open once more as if in a breeze and then Nana seemed to shimmer back into existence.

“Brian has a tattoo on the back of his neck.” Nana said simply.

“A tattoo?” Asked Riona.

“Yes, Billie noticed it when she woke up and beckoned me to come over and take a look.  It’s the witches mark but it’s just an outline and partially filled in.”

“Do you think that’s why Valerie brought him?” Asked Riona.

“Yes, he’s showing early signs.”

“Early signs?” I asked clueless.

“Yes, it’s not uncommon, dear, you’ve showed early signs yourself.  Today wasn’t the first time you levitated, Billie.” Nana explained. “Your mark showed once before also but your aunt and I covered it with a spell so that only witches would spot it.”

“It won’t last long, a couple of weeks at least but no more than a month I’d say.” Said Riona.

“Will you do the same for Brian?” I asked.

“No it’s not necessary since he can’t see it and you only spotted it ‘cause you were right up next to him.” Explained Riona.

“That’s why she brought him, right?  He’s been doing stuff, magic stuff and she’s freaking out.  That’s why she sent him here isn’t it?”

“She thought if she kept him from us she would be able to stop his powers from coming.” Nana said.

“The only reason she didn’t take you in, Billie, was because you were already showing signs.  She saw you as a lost cause.” Riona explained.

“Is that supposed to make me feel better?” I asked bitterly.

 

Riona dropped her gaze to the floor and Rowanne approached me attempting to take my hand.  But I was well passed comforting.  I still didn’t care why my grandmother abandoned me, she abandoned me all the same in a time when I needed her most.  I retreated from the loft and heard Brian moving about in his room so I headed there.

“So you want to go to the show room now?” I asked.

“Sure, great, just give me a minute.” He said.

“Okay, meet me out in the car.” I said leaving.

 

The only car show room in Penn Gate was on Main Street just off Ramsay Boulevard.  Anything worth while in Penn Gate you are sure to find on Main Street.  The show room was in a dilapidated old building and the cars were mostly in the same condition.  Brian was mostly quiet for the short drive, I could tell by the thickness of his wallet sitting in his lap that he’d worked hard and long for this.  Another thing unusual about Brian, he never used to save his money, he’d spend it on rubbish.  I hadn’t seen Brian since his last visit almost five months ago and he wasn’t nearly this mature.  He was still Valerie’s Prince.

“Could you come back in like two hours?” Brian asked as he slid out the door.

“Sure, I’ve got something I’ve got to do so I’ll meet you back here.” I said as he shut the door.

 

I was intending to go speak to Riley and his family about my little chat with Josephine but got sidetracked when I spotted the new girl, Astrid, looking completely lost.  She was looking a little worse for wares today compared to when I saw her last with her designer clothes and well manicured nails.  Today she was wearing a white shirt that was tied in a knot just above her navel and jeans that were a little too long for her very petite legs.  She looked so lost and innocent just then that I couldn’t just drive on by.

“Hey, you lost?  Do you need a ride?” I asked when she peered through my open window.  She was standing on the corner of Lemon Street and Jackson Boulevard with a ragged looking map in her hands.

“Oh, you’re the girl with boys’ name.” She said, when she saw my friendly face drop she backtracked quick.  “I mean, yes, please!” She said instantly jumping inside the car.  “I had to go to the store to pick up some things for starting school tomorrow and my sister dropped me off with this,” she said waving her map about, “and then drove off.  She’s been very busy with my brother, trying to get settled into our new home that she forgot to point out where on the map we live and I’m terrible with maps as it is.” She explained in a hysterical shriek.

“Do you know what street you live on?” I asked soothingly, pulling away from the corner.

She dug in her small purse and pulled out a little notebook and said “Emerald Court, 7 Emerald Court.  That’s just off Small Street, right?” She asked.

“Right.  Buckle up I’ll drop you off.” I said.

“I’m really looking forward to school tomorrow, making new friends.  Does PG High have a cheerleading squad?” She asked her tone simmering down to something that was silk smooth to the ears.

“Yeah, Dulcie is captain.  We’ve got a spot open just now ‘cause one of the girls has gone missing.” I explained and she looked shocked.

“Oh, how terrible!  Does that sort of thing happen round here often?” She asked.

“Oh, no, it’s normally such a boring old town.  Nothing ever happens here.  I mean you’re the first to move here in three years.”

“How long have you lived here?”

“Three years.” I said smiling indulgently at her.

“Oh, what made you move here?” She asked crossing her legs and turning in her seat to face me slightly.

“My parents died in a car crash.  I moved in with my grandmother, she’s lived here most of her life.  My brother lived with my other grandmother but now he’s living with us.” I babbled.

“You have a brother?  What’s his name?” She asked eagerly.  “Does he go to PG High?  Is he cute?” The latter question seemed the most important to her I could tell.  “Well, he kind of looks like me but he’s two years younger.  His names Brian and he’s starting school tomorrow so you won’t be the only new kid at school.”

“Well, I’ll have my sister and my brother also.”  She said.

“Cool, I look forward to meeting them.” I said mostly to be polite and make conversation.

“Well, why don’t you come in and meet ‘em?” Astrid asked excitedly as I pulled up outside her house.

 

All the houses on Emerald Court were very big, very desirous and very, very expensive.  It was like some small part of California had been torn out of town and then placed here in this small cul-de-sac in a nothing town called Penn Gate.  The front of the house was guarded by a tall black security gate and once I’d stopped in front of it Astrid punched in a code she got from her little notebook.  As my car meandered up the little slope in her front garden I saw she had a rather large fountain surrounded by little solar lights.  The house itself was chalk white with large windows and a beautiful trellis climbing up the walls.  She led me through an arch in the building where I could see a large garden down a slope and where men were working at building a pool and Jacuzzi.  Half way under the arch was a door and she swung it wide open motioning for me to enter.

 

The inside of her house was just as beautiful as the outside.  The walls were mostly painted white or a sandy beige colour.  There were lots of expensive ornaments and, in one room, there was a large grand piano and a glass trophy case.  The dining room and living room were open planned just like my own only much larger and much more modern.  The kitchen was shining with masses of chrome appliances, the bathroom had a large old fashioned bathtub and a very impressive shower.  Of course the house was so large that there was more than one bathroom.  She led me upstairs and showed me her room, which was very girly and extremely pink.  She kept on giving me the tour until she heard her sisters’ voice.

“Come on she’s in the garden.” Astrid said before leading me back to the kitchen and out onto a large patio.

 

Her sister was standing talking to one of the workers.  This girl was taller than Astrid but still slim and though she was dressed well, in a full length khaki skirt and white tank top, nothing about her screamed designer like the first time I’d met Astrid.  Her hair was long and blonde but quite clearly more natural than her sister, she turned at our approach and I stayed slightly behind, minding my own business whilst the sisters conversed.

“You’ve been gone ages, Astrid.  Did you get everything off the list?” She asked in an almost motherly tone of voice.

“Yeah, the bags are inside.” She motioned to me, “This is Billie, she gave me a ride, we met a couple of nights ago.” Astrid explained.

“Hi nice to meet you, Billie.  I’m Desiree.” She said shaking my hand.

“Pleasures mine.” I said conversationally.  “You have a beautiful home, Astrid just gave me the tour.”

“Well, it’s okay.” Desiree said nonchalantly as if she was used to living in luxury.  “It’ll be better once everything is unpacked and the men have finished with the pool.  We’re going to have a party once it’s done, you should come.”

“That’d be nice, thanks.”

“Whose your friend, sis?” I heard a male voice say.

 

I turned to see Astrid’s brother striding across the patio. He was devastatingly gorgeous, brown hair that seemed have blonde tips gelled up into a spiky ‘do, chiseled cheekbones and a long lean body.  He was wearing tight black pants and a ruby coloured sweater.

“I’m Billie.” I said extending my hand to shake his.  “Billie Black.”

“Billie, pleasure to meet you.  I’m Christian.” He said taking my hand in his and kissing it whilst peering up at me with crystal blue eyes through his long brown lashes.

It is unnatural for one person to be so unearthly breathtaking.  I couldn’t think of one person who could be more lovely than him.  “Tell me, Billie, has my annoying sister been giving you the grand tour?” He asked and Astrid turned crimson.

“Oh…” I stuttered and looked at Astrid apologetically to let her know I didn’t think she was annoying, well, yeah, I did think that but I didn’t want her to know it. “… Yeah, it’s lovely.”

“May be you should take a tour of my bedroom some time.” He winked.

 

That was all it took to break the spell his beauty held over me.  But I pretended to be friendly and playful all the same.

“Oh my god did you really just say that?” I asked trying not to laugh too hard.

“Yeah, really, Christian!  That is definitely one of the oldest and worst pick up lines ever!” Said Desiree in hysterics.

 

Time was dragging on and I still had to go see Riley before going to pick up Brian and I didn’t want to be stuck here all day with the new kids in town.

“Oh, sorry, I have to go do some errands for my grandmother and pick up my brother.  I’ll see you guys tomorrow at school?”

“Yeah, definitely!  Save us a seat at the lunch table will you?”  Desiree said pleasantly.

“Sure, of course.  Well, nice meeting you.  See you at school.”  I said and they waved me off as I started to make my way under the arch and back to my car.

 

Riley’s house was only a couple of streets away but nonetheless I floored it all the way there so I could just get this out the way and go get Brian.  Willem was sitting on the front porch reading a book with a tall glass of what I guessed to be blood.  Willem was taller than Riley but looked a lot like him only he was broad shouldered and had long blondish hair.

“Is that tomato juice?” I joked pointing at the glass.

Willem cracked a grin, “I never guessed you to have a sense of humour, Billie.” Willem said standing.

“Never guessed you to be immortal, Willem.” He chuckled.

“You here to see Riley?” He asked pleasantly.

“Actually, I’m here to see all of you.”

“What’s up?”

“I think it’s best I tell you inside. If any of the neighbours hear me they’ll probably have me shipped off to the nearest loony bin.”

 

Willem laughed, picked up his glass and led the way inside.

“Riley, your girlfriend’s here!” Willem shouted at the bottom of the stairs and then winked at me.  “How are your hands?” He asked once his laughter subsided.

“Better thanks.”

“Go take a seat while I get them together.”

 

Riley was the first to come into the living room.  He sat next to me and held my hand, Willem came in and sat in the chair opposite me while Leonard stood by the fireplace.  Faith was the last to arrive, she seemed reluctant to be in the same room as me so she stood behind me leaning against the alcove wall neither in the living room or in the hall.

“You had something to tell us, Billie.” Riley started.

“Yeah, I do.”

“Has Josephine appeared to you?” Leonard asked before I could begin.

“Yes she has.  She came to me in the cemetery.  She told me about an old evil that she conquered, she said that someone was going to raise him from the damned.”

“Did she say which evil?” Asked Willem.

“No, I didn’t really think about it on the night but I think may be she couldn’t or something was stopping her from telling me.”

“Did she say who was going to raise them?” Leonard asked staring at the floor.

“No, she didn’t.”

“Of course it would be too easy if we knew who was being raised and who was doing the raising.” Willem groaned.

“Why did she bury you?” Riley asked soothingly.

“I was struggling to accept, well, everything.  I was struggling to accept my powers, my destiny and my lineage.  Josephine said that by facing my greatest fear and conquering it I would be able to accept that I am her reincarnate.” Leonard’s gaze lifted to meet my eyes.  “And in accepting that I would accept my powers and learn to control them before they could control me.”

“And it worked?  You can control your powers now?” Riley asked.

 

In answer I pointed at a pile of coasters stacked on top of one another and sent them spinning around the room before placing them neatly in a pile again.  Riley, Leonard and Willem were all impressed except Faith who stood scoffing behind my back.

“What else can you do?” Willem asked.

 

I blinked hard disappeared and then appearing behind Faith, I walked back into the room.  Before Willem could ask what else I could do I butted in.  “I can also levitate and astral project but I’m still learning to control those powers.”

“How often does Josephine appear to you?” Leonard asked.

“Not all the time, mostly in mirrors or other reflective objects.”

“Can you see her now?” Leonard indicated the mirror above the fireplace.

 

I hesitantly stood and walked over to the fireplace praying Josephine would be there.  And there she was in her scarlet dress and rolling her eyes at Leonard.

“Tell him that just because you are me reincarnate doesn’t mean his old girlfriend is here.  You are still Billie and you have a very different life from your past life.”

I turned to Leonard but he put his hand up to stop me.  “It’s okay I heard her words from your mouth.” He turned and gazed at the mirror.  “Why can’t I see her?” He asked sadly.

“She only appears to me.”  He looked at me blankly.  “We share the same soul so only I can speak to her.” I looked at the mirror and she was gone.  “She’s gone now.”

“So what do we do about whoever is raising this big nasty?” Willem asked.

“Josephine said they’ll be enemies of mine but I don’t have any as far as I’m aware.”

“Could they be enemies of Josephine’s?” Riley asked his uncle.

“I doubt it.  Josephine always took care of her enemies.” Leonard said with a grim smile.

“There are new kids in town they’ll be starting at PG High tomorrow along with my brother.” I hadn’t intended to say this but I could feel Josephine’s presence and I knew if she wanted me to say this it must be important.”

“Of course!” Faith said, “The triplets, they’re Sun Walkers, too.”

“What?” I asked shocked.

“But it’s like you said, Faith, their Sun Walkers.  They aren’t evil.”  Willem said to his sister.

“Doesn’t mean they can’t turn, Willem.  The Prophet we spoke to said a new evil was coming to town.” Riley said deplorably.

“All we can do is keep an eye on them and keep the community safe.”

“Hold up!” I exclaimed, “The Moons are vampires?  Seriously?”

“Yes, that’s why they don’t have parents, see?  They’ll tell all the humans that their parents are dead and that some Social Service type looks after them.” Faith explained crossly.

“Besides their not all Moons.  That boy, Christian, his surname is Hart.” Willem said.

“Why would he have a different name from his sisters?” I asked.

“He says that all their lives they didn’t know who their biological father was and then his sister, Desiree, found him and they changed their name to his.” Leonard explained.

“So he doesn’t really know?” I asked shocked.

“He didn’t seem to care, really.  He thought of it as a phase that they’ll gradually get bored of and change it back eventually.”

“Well, then, if you lot are going to be protecting the community I am going to look at some books back home.  May be if these triplets are really old Josephine may have come across their biological father.”

“We don’t know how old they are, Billie, and we don’t necessarily know if Josephine did come across him.  She’s met scores of vampires and she would’ve either killed them or helped them change like she did with me.” Said Leonard.

“Well, I might as well look.  You can’t be too safe you know?  They’re going to be sitting with me at lunch tomorrow, may be I can get something out of them then.”

“Be careful.” Riley said as he walked me to the door.  “So will I be seeing you again for something other than monster hunting?”

“What do you have in mind?” I asked.

“Oh, I don’t know.  Um… may be just go see a movie or something sometime?” He asked timidly.

“Okay, sounds good.” I said and kissed him quick before bolting for my car.

 

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