Chapter 16-New Beginnings
It’s been one week since the trial and the whole cabin ordeal. I’m so glad Nick found me, but I have no idea how he did it. Colin got pretty badly hurt by the warlock, he called Stella and told her he had to take off the entire week. He’s afraid he won’t make rent now this month, but Stella will probably help him pay.
Colin called me the other day and apologized for scaring me up at the cabin. When Stella took him to the doctor, they said he had a panic attack. Stella really thinks it’s her fault he had the episode, turns out none of what he said to Will and I was true. I don’t know how what he said could have been anyway, with how well everything is going.
I’m so glad Nick and Will are finally getting along. I still can’t get over how he gave Will half a hundred thousand dollars to start his campaign.
Will talked to me about it, said he was starting to realize how wrong he was about Nick too. I’m just sad he went far enough to try to kill Nick, but I know he was in a desperate position to rescue his family from the wicked supreme. He just got back yesterday from Florida, thankfully, his family is safe now.
I just can’t believe Will is going to be mayor. Just when I thought things between the police department and coven were beyond help, Nick donated to the coven so they could fund his campaign. It must be their form of a peace treaty, I hope it works.
It was pretty exciting to see Will on the news making his speeches about the riots and vowing to put an end to them. He even completely dismissed the legend too and told everyone about his donors, including Nick. The high council of supernatural affairs was watching one of his speeches too. Will even has his own personal assistant now.
He’ll have a louder voice in the community, but I can’t bet on that keeping the rumors down. So I’ve been forced to take some matters into my own hands, like getting Stella to teach me some new spells and trying to change my appearance. I tried dying my hair several times over the last couple days, but the colors get absorbed by its unpleasant white shade. So at that point, I didn’t bother cutting my hair. The only effect dying it nearly all shades of the rainbow was leaving my hair with this unsatisfying slight blonde tint when I woke up this morning.
Since it’s winter, I usually just wear my heaviest winter coat and tie my hair up in a bun under my hood or hat to and from work to avoid getting spotted.
I shake off the raindrops from my black umbrella and then close it, entering the sliding glass doors of the station. Linda I learned is the name of the vampire lady usually running the front desk, she gives me a small wave and I smile setting my umbrella down by the entrance.
Then I pull my hood down and undo my hair from its bun, frowning when it drops to my shoulders all frizzy. I do my best to pat it down and then head over to the coffee station.
There’s a stack of cream colored paper cups next to the coffee maker. I pick up the one on top of the stack and then pour myself some of the warm drink. After filling it with some cream and sugar, I stir it together with a straw and accidentally spill some at the bottom of my pink blouse.
“Good morning.” A voice grumbles next to me.
“Morning.” I chirp, eager to escape his close proximity and head over to my desk. Instead, all I manage to do is stare down at the coffee station counter. Nick reaches around me to get a napkin and hands it to me, reluctantly I look up at him and mutter a thank you taking the napkin.
His face is still red from the cold outside as he gulps down his drink.
Ever since he helped restore my magic I feel embarrassed around him. It was so humiliating, crying and whimpering against him while he barely managed to hold me up and juggle giving me some of his own magic at the same time. Then I went full teenager mode and daydreamed about him being Will because selfish little me wanted him to heal me instead. What was really happening was my magic was feeding off his like a leech and then I went and made that stupid noise getting some kind magic high off of stealing his own magic.
I’m still disgusted at myself. I told Will everything and he wasn’t happy either. I even told him about my dumb daydreaming too, but he laughed it off and didn’t seem that bothered by it. He probably would have been if I told him Nick glamoured me, but I left that part out. I don’t want him getting mad at him again.
My boss turns away from me and goes back outside. I pour myself a little more coffee then go into the workroom. Yansmen is jotting something down on his notepad and someone a few desks over calls him.
“Yeah, I found the kid’s address. Oh hey, Parway.” Yansmen says quickly while striding away from his desk in a hurry.
“Hey.” I greet him, sitting down and placing my tote below my desk.
I’m so happy Will is taking me out to lunch today, I feel like I’m already starving. I think I could go for a warm sandwich, maybe a rueben. Then again, I haven’t had a good bowl of soup in a while. Not really motivated to work, I throw open one of my desk drawers and look for my favorite earmuffs that I left here and are the reason why my ears are still numb.
“You look frozen.” Yansmen says while sitting back down in his chair and typing away on his laptop.
“I am. I walk to work.” I laugh uneasily.
“Yikes.” He replies mockingly and I roll my eyes.
A few hours go by and I finish typing up some research I found on Henry Guyer, an elderly man who felt the need to rob a doughnut shop down the block. His grandson owns the store and I suppose the grandfather never heard of security cameras before. We caught him on tape and it’s been my duty to write down all the details I see in the video and then download the file in an email to Yansmen so he can see it too before we send it to Nick.
After I finally finish typing up the email, I click send. At last, I can get something to eat. So I put on my coat and double check my phone.
“I’ll bring you back a bite to eat.” I smile and Yansmen hoots in agreement.
I’m going to be late, walking three blocks downtown to the cafe Will and I agreed to meet up at. I just had to get that email sent though. Nick wanted it by noon and Yansmen needed to finish reading it before I sent it.
At least it’s stopped raining now. By the time I make it to the cafe though, my face still feels frozen and even the warmth of the indoor heating doesn’t do much good.
“Hey there.” Will greets me huskily and I giggle as he helps me with my coat.
“Hello, mayor McCaster.” I tease as we sit down at a booth with purple cushioning.
“Not quite yet, but soon with good luck.” Will sighs. Soon after, our waitress comes to us. I decide to order a turkey sandwich and Will gets a cheesesteak.
We both chit chat for a while. Will tells me all about the obstacles he has to overcome just to get flyers out to people about him running for mayor. By the time he finishes telling me about his tour around the town hall building where his new office might be our foods arrives and we dig in.
We eat in comfortable silence and enjoy the nineties music playing softly above our heads. Too soon, I finish eating and wish I would have slower. I like this cafe and I like sitting here with Will, I don’t want to leave.
“Aren’t you going to eat that?” Will asks me as I wrap up my leftover half of sandwich.
“Nope.” I scoff, thinking of Yansmen and hoping this sandwich will keep him from eating my cupcake in the fridge that Stella made.
Will takes another bite out of his cheesesteak with a thoughtful look.
“It’s for David...Yansmen, remember?” I frown seeing him give me a weird look.
“How’s he been?” He asks as I stuff the half sandwich into my tote. My phone lights up at the bottom of it below all the clutter grabbing my attention. I hope it’s not Yansmen bugging for food, I thought I told him I would get him some. Ignoring my phone for the time being, I look back up at Will.
“Good, he didn’t like having to do training over the weekend. We all did for your campaign, they may need more police on site for election day. Just think, I could be there protecting you. They may even give me a gun.” I say with a smile, wondering if they will request me to help out that day.
He laughs and accidentally snorts out water through his nose and we both fall into a laughing fit.
After he finishes eating too, he pays for our meal even though I persist to pay my share. Will gives me a kiss goodbye then and after a warm hug, he strides down the sidewalk the opposite direction I have to go.
Reluctantly, I head out of the cafe too and once I start walking, I pull out my phone hoping it’s not Yansmen. Wait, what if I missed a meeting? Well, it’s a Tuesday so we shouldn’t have one. We also already did our peer evaluations for this quarter.
I tap my phone and the screen brightens.
Everything okay? I read Nick’s text and relief floods into me. I should have known it wasn’t worth worrying about.
Before the supreme incident, occasionally he would check in on me if he found my desk empty like he is now. After the incident, he’s been texting me a little more.
Sometimes when I’m exorcizing the demons behind the station and it takes longer than usual, I might get a text asking where I am too, but that’s the extent of it. Solely professional, completely work related. Really no different than Yansmen’s texts to me about paperwork and our report progress.
Yes. I answer him shortly, knowing the conversation will end there like normal.
When I make it back to the police station, it’s not as noisy and mostly everyone is seated quietly working.
“Here.” I offer Yansmen and he perks up, snatching the food I saved for him out of my hand gobbling it down.
The rest of the day goes by pretty slow and when it comes time to pack up Stella calls me.
“Val! I’m going to be at my niece’s birthday party tonight. I need you to take the car in for inspection, can you still do it? Pretty please.” She pleads and I pick up my tote, turning off my computer.
“Yeah! I got you. When does it need to be taken in?” I ask her while walking outside the police station.
“Oh.” I deadpan seeing her standing outside with the car parked right out front. I guess her niece must live right in town. Looks like the car’s still running, should be warm. Stella gives me a quick hug, then hands me the keys after getting the gifts from the trunk.
“Thank you! Pick me up around ten pm then?” She asks me.
“Sounds good.” I say.
Stella holds the two wrapped gifts in her arms and then starts to book it down the street, I hope she doesn’t trip. That would be bad, she spoils her nieces too-those gifts were expensive. I went shopping with her to buy them.
“Ugh...” I groan making my way down the steps from my annoying niece’s house.
Now that that’s over, I can get to business.
I follow the directions on my phone to the church, my blood boiling thinking about that no good hybrid. No one believes me! I’m going to show them all he’s after the legend. I’ve been telling her over and over again to quit her job. She just thinks I’m being dramatic though and judging him for being a vampire hybrid.
Well, this time I’m not. Besides, Colin told me everything and now he ‘mysteriously’ is being distant again. I know he’s involved with them, breaks my heart he kept it from me.
How dare he side with the vampires when we’ve been dating for years! He should know better. There’s not a doubt in me that they found out he spilled the beans.
They want Valerie, they want the portal and they want all of us witches dead!
I admit the money they gave William was a shocker to me though. I just think they are trying to play their cards right and strike back at us when we least expect it. There has to be something in this church to give me evidence to show Val to prove it.
Making it to the church, my teeth chatter against the cold as I walk around to the parking lot to make sure no one else is here. Seeing it’s empty, I smile in satisfaction and walk back around to the front. They usually lock it during the night, but I’m a witch and locks are easy.
"Reserare.” I command and I hear the iron lock click. I push the heavy door open and shut it quickly behind me scanning the huge room. Good, looks like no one’s here. I’m glad they left the lights on.
Getting straight to work, I pull out my prepared potion glass from my purse and down the syrup-like liquid while thinking of my best friend. They call it imitation brew. Makes the user’s magic mirror what the mind imagines, imitating a person. Even their voice.
A measure necessary in case someone sees me, I don’t think they will care if Val is here. A witch like me may be another thing.
I glance cautiously in one of the longer church windows and grin seeing Valerie stare back at me. It’s my first time trying this out, so far so good. And kind of fun.
“Hello?” I call out and thankfully the voice matches and no one responds.
Already feeling a little uncomfortable in the big church, I make my way around the several rows of pews looking for anything out of the ordinary. Finding nothing I squint my eyes looking at the several floors of pews above me.
On the ceiling is a huge tile mural that looks pretty similar to the police chief, but Val told me his father was a priest here so it must be him.
“Freaky...” I mumble, walking up to the altar and the old dead plants placed around the picture of Mr. Silvet. Getting weirded out by his photo staring at me in disapproval, I place the picture frame facing down on the table. Then I make my way to a door hidden behind a row of red, black and gold tapestries.
After rattling the doorknob, I mutter my lock spell again and quickly lose the contents of my dinner.
“Gugh!” I grunt after vomiting from the grotesque sight and the smell. Oh the smell...
I shine my phone flashlight and take snapshots of the mutilated body feeling sick. My heart hammers after I finish the shots, quickly I shut the door.
Something across the church slams and I stagger backwards bumping into a podium. It’s the big giant vamp from the station. Can he see me? He will soon, best if I speak up first.
“Hi!” I shout, waving at the officer and speaking in Valerie’s voice.
I squeak seeing him flicker out of sight, standing right before me in less than a second.
I jump back.
“Goddess, what you doing here? Need help or waiting for chief?” The brute vampire asks me in his thick accent, he itches the back of his tattooed neck.
“Oh you know, just praying.” I say in a sweet voice while trying to win him over with a smile.
Meanwhile, my mind is screaming and my hand holding my phone trembles.
The vampire chuckles then looks to his left as if hearing something.
“Liar.” The vampire says while stepping towards me and gripping my throat.
My not so perfected imitation spell falls when his iron grip squeezes around my throat tighter.
Then he lets go.
“Orange hair, clever witch-like mother. No?” He states in an eerie voice while extending his fangs and I send a wave of my magic at him. He gets thrown backwards, landing on top of a pew.
“Stay away from me!” I scream, watching him flicker out of sight with a wolf-like grin.
“No.” The vampire whispers behind me just as I elbow him in his ribs.
Something small stings at the back of my right arm. As if I was stung by a bee or maybe bitten. A scream escapes me when I feel it burrow under my skin and eat its way through sensitive tissue, setting the insides of my right arm on fire.
With a frightened yell, I watch as something small and skinny inches up to my wrist forming an upside down triangle.
Feeling ill, I fall to my knees as the big vampire watches me with amusement.
The creature or whatever it was must have died in me for the mark is black as ink. My vision goes dark.
Words of promise flood into my mind. I find no room to argue as the big vampire grips my shoulders with a deep look of concentration. His broken english informing me of my new duties and purpose.
Then the vampire picks up my phone and hands it back to me.
“Help goddess and protect prophecy.” I repeat the vampire’s words after watching him disappear.
A minute passes and I blink.
Ew...something smells. Why am I in this church? Oh yeah, I wanted to take some pictures of their architecture. I’m not sure why I have these bloody horror scenes on my phone so I delete them to clear up more space.
After I’m done taking pictures of the pews and murals, I happily text Val I’m ready to be picked up.
What a great week! I can’t wait to visit my boyfriend tomorrow and catch up with Valerie when I get home. I have so much work do at the boutique tomorrow our sales are down twenty percent. Huh, some kind of weird bug bite is on my wrist, I’ll buy some lotion for it tomorrow. So much to do!