The Haunted

"Oh Lucinda, if you think this has a happy ending, then you haven't been paying attention." She smirked amused by Lucinda's sense of optimism.

Something has come back to Bishops Green. Something that wants to kill. Something unworldly.
Sixteen year old Lucinda Marcs is cute, fun and looking forward to the start of her Junior year of High School. But little does she know that something evil has made it's way into Bishop's Green, her quaint, seemingly normal town where nothing ever happened.
And when Lucinda finds herself caught up in the mess it's up to her to figure out how to get rid of this evil for good.
But what happens when her best friend becomes a target? Will she be able to save her? Or will she fall with her?

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24. Chapter Twenty-Four:

Lucinda walked into the kitchen where both her parents were sat at the Island waiting for her. Her father, the sterner of the two, looked ready for a fight with his face a slight tinge of pink showing Lucinda how angry he was. Her mother, whilst also angry, looked more relieved that her daughter was ok and hadn't been the next victim of the towns serial killer.

"Lucinda I think you should sit down." Penny spoke softly gesturing to the seat closest to Lucinda in between both her parents. Lucinda cautiously sat down between them and waited for all hell to break loose. She wasn't usually in trouble of any kind but from the looks on her parents faces it seemed she was in it deep now.

"We need to talk to you and we need you to listen to us Lucinda." Her father firmly spoke. Lucinda nodded knowing it was best to not speak and just listen to the lecture. "We should've told you years ago." Her father sighed a flash of guilt etched onto his face before quickly disappearing as if it had never been there.

Lucinda looked between both her parents confused trying to decipher the emotions on their faces. Her mother, Penny, was normally a blank canvas but today her expression was riddled with emotions. "What's going on? I thought you guys were going to tell me off for leaving the house?" Lucinda questioned.

Her father let out a dry laugh and Lucinda realised whatever they wanted to talk about was much more important than her skipping out for a few hours. 

Her mother took a deep breath, she'd known how hard it was going to be to tell Lucinda but she wanted her to know. She needed her to know. For the good of Bishop's Green. "Will someone just say something..." Lucinda cried out growing frustrated. "Lucinda," Her mother said calmly the threat of tears lying behind her eyes as she looked over her innocent sixteen year old daughter. 

"We want to tell you a story." Her mother began and Lucinda rolled her eyes. The town was in panic and bad things were happening and her mother wanted to play story time. "It's about your great-great-great-grandmother." Penny said. 

Cogs began to turn in Lucinda's head and she wondered if her parents were about to relay the family history on her. The history that Brad had told her though he'd already expected her to know about it. Did her family have secrets too just like Brad's. "I knew when I saw you with that boy outside. I knew we had to tell you now." Her mother said. 

Brad, Lucinda thought. 

"What's this got to do with Brad?" Lucinda asked although after spending two hours talking to him about how he knew about the Marcs family she figured she already knew the answer.

"He's a special boy." Her mom commented. Lucinda stifled a laugh knowing it wasn't funny but hearing her mom call Brad special made her giggle. "Your father and I knew when we first saw him in town something was going to happen." Her mother told her. "What do you mean something was going to happen?" She asked her parents.  

Her parents looked at each other instead of Lucinda and it riled her up. Why were they taking so long to tell her? "Is this to do with Annie Marcs?" Lucinda asked tired of waiting for them to speak. She'd been meaning to ask her parents anyway if there was an Annie in the family and now her parents wanted to talk about their ancestors she'd figured they probably did.

Penny ,eyes wide, nodded and said, "Yes, that's what we want to talk to you about." Her mother felt a little lighter knowing Lucinda may already know a little bit about Annie and who she was but by the confusion written all over her daughters face it was obvious she was going to have to explain further. "Annie's grandparents brought the Marcs family name to Bishop's Green almost three hundred years ago." Her mother explained.

Lucinda looked over to her father who looked clearly uncomfortable listening to the story. Lucinda realised her mother was going to be doing most of the explaining even though it was her fathers name.

"They were the first Marcs to ever live in this cute little town." Penny continued. She wished she could've sugar coated it and that it was easy to reveal all this family history to her daughter who now had to take on the responsibility of their family name. When Penny had first found out about her husbands family line she'd tried to persuade him to run from Bishop's Green but knew in her heart they couldn't. After all the Marcs had made a promise to the town and to it's people that they would protect it forevermore from the darkness that threatened it's peace.

"I know." Lucinda interrupted growing impatient with how slowly her mother was talking. She decided to give her some help. "I know about Annie and what she could do. Her powers, or whatever you want to call them. I know why our family came to Bishop's Green. I know about the Bishop and his 'miracle prayer' and the curse that was put upon the town and the witch." Lucinda rushed out taking a large breath when she'd finished. Her voice was firm and clear but she felt she was pretending belief. After all how could all of this really be true? 

Her mothers shoulders relaxed glad she'd interrupted her. "Then you must know who you really are Lucinda." Her mother said solemnly as if she hated what her daughter was. "What do you mean who I am? I thought this was a family thing?" Lucinda questioned. She heard her father sigh deeply and thought it'd probably make everyone's life easier if he just explained everything.

"It's you Lucinda," Her dad finally spoke. "It's only the women of the family line who possess the power and since your mother wasn't born a Marcs it falls on you." Her father said. "What?" Lucinda exclaimed. She hadn't expected everything to fall onto her shoulders. Her small, vulnerable sixteen year old shoulders. What was she going to do? 

"We wanted to tell you..." Penny trailed off looking longingly at her husband. She knew it was him who had wanted to keep the secret from their daughter to protect her from the curse that riddled his family name. "It's not fair that this falls on you Lucinda." Her father spoke. "It's my name. It shouldn't be you." He whispered angrily. Lucinda could tell this was hard for her father, he blamed himself.

"That's not true." Lucinda whispered putting her hand softly over her fathers. "You can't blame yourself. You didn't have a choice. It just happened to be our family, it could've been anybody." Lucinda said firmly. Her father smiled weakly at his daughter, an inexplicable feeling burning in his chest. Pride.

"Why is it only the women of the family line?" Lucinda queried. "Well no one can get through to a woman like another woman." Her father said. The Ivy Witch, Lucinda realised. It all hit her. Everything that Brad had told her and everything she'd read in his book was true. She was a Marcs, the only living female Marcs. It was all down to her. She had the power to defeat this evil witch but she had no idea how. It was much more responsibility than any teenager could ever dream to take on but Lucinda knew she had no choice. Now she had to believe.

"Wait, why are you only telling me this now? Surely it would've been better to tell me before people started dying." Lucinda said annoyed at her parents for keeping this from her. If her parents knew she was here to protect and save the town surely they'd know she'd need some practise and that would take time. Three people were already dead and who knows what was going to happen next. 

"We're telling you now Lucinda." Her father sternly said. Lucinda realised her parents weren't prepared to take any of the blame for not mentioning something this important earlier. She could see how hard it was for her father to even look at her knowing what now fell on her shoulders. But she could do it, right? Well she had to at least try. 

"What did that boy tell you?" Her father asked. "That boy has a name," Lucinda rolled her eyes before answering her father, "He just showed me the story of Annie and The Ivy Witch. And told me a bit about his abilities." Lucinda told them. She'd found it hard to believe that Brad could speak to ghosts and often communicated with the dead. He'd told her that's why he spent most of his time alone so people wouldn't think he was crazy for talking to what looked like thin air. Though Lucinda knew now that his crazy was nothing compared to the crazy she now held.

"I guess he didn't tell you everything." Her father said. He took a deep breath before saying, "it's Brad's family that made the Marcs who they are. The Bishop who begged for a miracle was his great-great-great-great-great grandfather." Lucinda's eyes widened, maybe she'd been destined to meet Brad all along. She wondered if he knew about their families connection.

"So the miracle wasn't just our family. It was Brad's too?" Lucinda questioned trying to make sense of everything. "Yes and no. Our families are linked through the curse" Her dad told her. Lucinda was still no closer to understanding what was really going on or how she was going to save Bishop's Green. 

"So if our family really is the product of a miracle and this 'power' now falls to me what exactly am I?" Lucinda asked wondering what inhumane description they would have for her. She didn't feel any different than usual and she wasn't sure she had any powers inside of her strong enough to get rid of a force of evil.

Both her parents looked at each other before her father said, "you're a witch Lucinda." Lucinda gasped loudly her bright eyes widening. She'd just found out an evil witch was killing people in her town and now her parents were calling her a witch too. 

"What?" She asked not really understanding. "You're a witch Lucinda. The miracle brought to this town was that of magic. You can't expect to be able to defeat that kind of power without having power of your own." Her mother explained. But Lucinda didn't like the idea of having power or being called a witch. Witches were ugly and evil. 

"So am I a good witch?" She asked hesitantly remembering the beautiful good witch of the North from The Wizard of Oz. She'd been able to help Dorothy save Oz from the evil of the wicked witch maybe Lucinda could do the same here. "Yes." Her father confirmed.

"You really believe that?" Lucinda asked sceptically. She wondered when the punch line came in or when she'd wake up and it would have all been a dream. A bad dream. "You really believe I have the power to stop this supposed Ivy Witch?" She wasn't so sure. "Yes, you have to. It's in your blood." Her mother told her. "And Brad will help you."

"How?" Lucinda asked. She knew Brad had the ability to speak to ghosts but magic? "Like your father said our families are linked. It was the Bishop's grandson who showed Annie what she was capable of and how to master her abilities. Brad can do that for you." Her mother told her. 

"Here. You should read this." Her father handed her a brown leather book similar to the one Brad had given her. "It was Annie's journal. She wrote down everything when she'd realised the power she had. It's been passed down our family line since then. Now it's yours." He told her.

Lucinda took the book from her father but didn't open it. She wanted to read it privately before she really delved into all of this craziness. There was still one niggling question at the back of her mind that she couldn't ignore, "what about Noah?" She asked. "Does he know?" She'd noticed Noah wasn't here for this chat and being a male it was clear he didn't posses any strange powers capable of defeating evil witches.

"No, and we'd like to keep it that way. At least until he's back to normal." Her mother said and Lucinda realised they both knew. "You know about Alanna." She whispered loud enough for both of them to hear. Her parents merely nodded confirming Lucinda's thoughts. Noah had worked so hard to keep the secret from them but they had already known. It made her wonder what else they knew that she had never told them.

"So if Grandma was still alive would this be her job?" Lucinda asked unsure of why she'd brought it up. This made her father chuckle before he said, "Though she was feisty I can't really imagine my mother fighting witches." Lucinda and her mother laughed as they thought about the tiny, frail woman battling evil. Something that Lucinda actually had to do.

She had to do what she could for her family, for her town, for Alanna, Kyle and Gemma. She had to at least try and try before anyone else died.

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