Chapter 8 - Mystery
Mystery was knee deep in boxes when she heard a knock on her front door. Immediately her heart raced, and a blush coloured her cheeks. Hunter had said he would return later that night, and even though it wasn’t that late, she assumed it was him. With no mirror handy to check her appearance, she had no choice but to answer looking like she did. She figured she must look a mess, but she didn’t want to keep him waiting.
Rushing to the door and throwing it open, she frowned when her saw her Aunt Ruby and Aunt Mara standing on the porch. She was hoping they would give her tonight to get settled, then converge on her in the morning. They were eager to see the house, Mystery knew that, but they usually let her have her way. She eyed them up and down and saw they were dressed for socializing, not for working. Not to mention, Ruby was carrying all the ingredients for Strawberry Daiquiris. That meant this was a serious call.
“You look like we killed your puppy,” Mara declared, as she pushed Mystery aside and sauntered into the house. Ruby of course was right on her heels.
“I’m sorry,” Mystery apologized, as she took the bags from her Aunts and headed into the kitchen.
“You were expecting your new man,” Ruby declared, not surprising her in the least. Mystery turned an even brighter shade of red as she rolled her eyes, causing her Aunts to laugh.
“He told me he would be over later,” Mystery reluctantly admitted. “And I didn’t expect the two of you until tomorrow.”
“We know my dear,” Ruby acknowledged. “But we have something extremely urgent that we need to discuss with you.”
“It really can’t wait,” Mara added.
Mystery sighed, knowing whatever her Aunts had to say would be important. The two were rarely serious, and with the amount of liquor they were carrying, she assumed they were settling in for a while.
“I don’t know where my blender is,” Mystery said in response, as she eyed the boxes stacked up in the corner.
“No worries we always carry an extra,” Mara cheerfully declared. Then she moved to the bags Mystery had placed on the counter and began pulling everything out, including a blender. A few minutes later liquor bottles lined the counter, along with glasses, a bag of ice, a cheese platter and a fruit tray with chocolate dip.
Mystery laughed as she inspected the food, then turned to grab paper towels. “You’ve thought of everything.”
Both her Aunts beamed at her compliment. “Why of course,” Ruby grinned. “This isn’t our first rodeo.”
They instantly got down to business. Drinks were made, the food was moved into the living room, and the three got settled on Mystery’s comfy new furniture.
“This cottage is adorable,” Mara praised, as she looked around the room.
Mystery completely agreed, and she couldn’t be happier with the coral colour she had picked out for the room. The cream couch and arm chairs she added were covered with colourful blankets and dozens of pillows. Plants filled the room and a fake white fur rug lay on the floor. Once she hung more plants from the ceiling, nailed dream catchers to the walls, and hung prisms and witch balls in the windows, the room would be complete.
“You really picked well,” Ruby agreed, and Mystery was delighted they approved. She loved her Aunts house, but she preferred the cosier cottage to the old fashioned home.
“What did you need to speak with me about?” Mystery finally questioned, wanting to understand the reason for their visit.
Both Aunts eyed each other than took large gulps of their drinks. It appeared they needed alcoholic courage before starting this discussion. Mystery took a cue from them and gulped hers as well. Then she set her drink on the trunk she was using as a coffee table and leaned back to wait them out.
“You’ve heard the rumours about us?” Mara asked gently, as she also set down her drink.
“I’ve heard you both are crazy,” Mystery admitted, as she tried to think about what else she had heard. “You don’t fit in.” She thought some more. “They also say you two have an uncanny ability to know things, and that you can read minds. Oh, and you have a way with animals.”
Ruby nodded as she seemed to consider what Mystery had said. “That’s all true, although we read people not their minds. You can tell a lot from their auras and the way they carry themselves. We tend to be observant.”
“Auras?” Mystery questioned. “Like the colours that surround people?”
“Exactly,” Mara grinned as she gave a little happy clap. “Can you see auras?”
Mystery nodded. “Sometimes if I look really closely and concentrate I can see them,” she admitted.
“If you are around too many people you get terrible headaches,” Ruby reminded her. “It’s their energy. You can feel it.”
“You feel energy all the time,” Mara added. “It flows through you. You know it’s there.”
Mystery stared at her hands. Sometimes she did feel the energy swirling through and around her. She loved that feeling. It was invigorating.
“And like us you adore nature,” Ruby reminded her. “You spend more time outside than inside. You surround yourself with plants, and you love being close to water,” she continued, as she pointed out the window to the creek they could see flowing behind the cottage.
“It’s calming,” Mystery admitted. “I feel at home when I’m close by it.”
“And the rain,” Mara added. “The more violent the storm the more you itch to get out in it.”
“And you love the moon,” Ruby grinned. “You lay in the grass and stare at it for hours.”
“The elements,” Mara continued. “Earth, air, fire and water. You’re attracted to all of them.”
“And crystals,” Ruby reminded her. “You have them scattered everywhere. You put them in windows, on shelves, in plants, and you even carry them with you.”
Mystery suddenly got an uneasy feeling as she stared at her Aunts, then down at the wire wrapped crystal she had around her neck. There was a point they were trying to make, she just couldn’t figure it out.
“We’re witches,” Mara confided with a sigh, and Mystery’s mouth dropped open in shock. That was not what she was expecting.
“Your mother was a witch, and you’re a witch,” Ruby explained.
“That’s not possible,” Mystery stammered. “I’d have known.”
“You were too young to remember that about her, and we don’t practice in front of you,” Mara calmly reminded her.
Mystery studied them and knew they spoke the truth. “Say I do believe you, why hide it from me?”
“Because we put a binding spell on you when you were little. You were a strong witch, we all saw it. You would lay in your crib and rainbows would burst out on the walls. Some people fear witches, and your mother worried they would come after you,” Ruby explained.
“Who’s they?” Mystery choked out as she tried to understand everything they were telling her.
“Witch hunters,” Ruby sneered. “Your binding is dissolving. It has been since you turned twenty. It will be completely gone in a few short days.”
“That’s crazy,” Mystery whispered, trying to make sense of it all.
“It is,” Mara sympathetically agreed. “You have a natural ability, but you’ll need a lot of practice to understand it and learn how to use it.”
“I don’t know what to say,” Mystery replied. Her thoughts were jumbled. She had always thought witches were incredibly gifted, and she had to admit, she wondered if she could learn how to be one.
“Promise you’ll study and learn the craft. We’ll do all we can to help you,” Ruby assured her.
“So I’m in danger?” Mystery questioned quietly as she read more into what the Aunts weren’t elaborating on.
“All witches are in danger,” Mara huffed. “The Salem witch trials were only the beginning.”
Mystery collapsed in her chair and held out her glass. “I think I need more liquor,” she declared.
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