Big shout out to my fabulous team: Ausha, Athena, Rachel, Sally and Domie! Thank you for all of your help and guidance.
A big thank you to all of you for reading, alerting, and reviewing this story. You all have been so kind to take the time to let me know how much you like it, and how you love Twi-Witchcraft, and I just wanted you all to know how much I love you all for it.
I know this story will end up on PDF soon, so if you want to find me on FB, my name is Kris Thompson ;)
I handed my bags to Jasper, then turned and faced my mom. We had driven our vehicles to the Cullen house where we dropped off my parents' belongings. Now that they were situated here, it was time to hit the road.
"Are you sure about this?" I asked, motioning toward the Cullen house. "I mean, you've seen inside of it. You have to admit it's slightly creepy with all that shit hanging everywhere."
My mom laughed and wrapped her arm around me, steering me toward the inside of the house. "We'll be fine. Siobhan said she was going to come over after you all leave to inventory everything here." She led me to the stairs and had me walk in front of her. "Now, you know how your father gets when it comes to emotion, so try not to be all mushy."
I stopped at the master bedroom door and just stood there for a minute.
"You're not saying goodbye, Bella," my mom said behind me.
"I know," I whispered. "I just don't know how to say 'see you later' or 'see you soon' either. No matter how you cut and slice it, I'm leaving without you guys."
"Will you two stop gossiping behind the door and get in here already?" my father yelled from the inside of the room.
I couldn't help but laugh as I opened the door and saw my father lying in his new bed, which had been brought in here earlier. It was his single request regarding this whole setup. He said he wasn't going to sleep on a "dead woman's bed".
"Hey, Dad." I smiled, walking over to him.
"It's about time," he grumbled and sat up a little. "You need to get a move on if you're going to make it to Idaho by sundown."
Sitting down on the bed beside him, I wrapped my arms around him and gave him a tight squeeze. I took a deep breath, pulling in his natural woodsy fragrance and storing it into my memory.
"I love you, Daddy," I whispered, holding back my true emotions.
My father squeezed back, kissing my head. "You are the greatest magic I ever made, and I am so proud of you. Never forget that your mother and I are only a phone call away."
I pulled back so I could look at him.
"And if you get into trouble, call Billy," he instructed.
I groaned and rolled my eyes.
"Hey, I know he's a pain, along with Jacob, but they're loyal. If you need help, just do your old man a favor and—"
"Call Billy," I finished. "I get it."
My mom stepped over to the other side of the bed and sat down. "Please try to check in with us at least once a week, too."
"And remember to play nice with the hierarchy of other covens," my father added. "Don't let Leah run her mouth at them."
I nodded and smiled. "I know the drill."
There was a long silence between the three of us before my father finally cleared his throat to declare, "All right, you better get a move on."
Taking another deep breath, I put on my brave face and walked out of the room.
"Do you want to talk about it?" Edward asked as we passed the Forks city limits.
Checking the driver's side mirror, I could see Jasper's car trailing behind me and Leah's truck behind him. It was hard leaving the coven, leaving my parents behind, but it was comforting to know they would be taken care of and safe. Siobhan promised me she would keep me posted if any issues came up, so I knew I didn't have anything to worry about.
Glancing over at Edward, I gave him a smile while reaching forward and taking the mic out of the holder. "All right team," I said over the mic. "How much farther?"
"We'll need a large body of water," Leah reminded us.
"There's a small town coming up called Snug Harbor, and it has a lake," Jasper replied. "We can stop there."
Slipping the mic back in its slot, I noticed Edward now wore a bit of a nervous look on his face. "There's just one thing we have to do before we head to Idaho."
Edward let out a tense laugh and asked, "Is this some kind of Seraph thing?"
"You could say that."
Twenty minutes later, our caravan pulled up to a quiet little park next to a lake. I got out and felt Edward follow as I made my way to the water. Jasper and Alice trailed behind, and I watched Leah and Emily walked toward us hand in hand. Leah carried a small duffel, and when she reached us, she handed it over.
"It's all there." She smiled and glanced toward Edward and Alice.
"What's going on?" Alice asked.
Emily laughed. "You're the Dorcha, so shouldn't you already know?"
I tossed the duffel at Jasper so he could set up. Looking over at Edward and Alice, I took a deep breath, then began. "A Seraph's life isn't easy. It's a permanent sacrifice, and once you're in, you're in for life."
After taking a moment to give them each a hard look and making sure they understood what was going on, I continued. "This isn't an easy vow, but it's the most important one you'll ever make. To become a Seraph is to marry all witches, to put them first before yourself. You must be willing to lay down your own life to protect our kind."
Jasper stepped forward with a gold goblet in one hand and a small knife in the other. Inside the cup was a potion only Herbal Witches knew how to concoct. A secret passed down from Seraph to Seraph in the herbal community; it bound a witch to the Seraph circle. He held out the knife to Edward. "I need you to add some of your blood," he said, then looked at Alice. "You, too."
Edward took the knife but stared at me as he pressed it into the inside of his hand. He gave me a look like he was unsure if he was doing it right, so I lifted my left hand to show him my scar. The others lifted their left hands, too, all of us showing we bore the mark. With determination in his eyes, Edward pushed the knife across his palm, and then passed the knife to Alice, who did the same.
"Make a tight fist and squeeze the blood into the cup," Emily said with a smile.
Jasper began whispering an incantation as Edward and Alice held their fists over the goblet and constricted, encouraging their life force to drip down and blend with the potion. When Jasper was done, he looked to me and nodded.
In turn, I looked at each of them and motioned for them to hold out their left hands, then asked, "Are you sure? Once this is done, there is no undoing it."
Edward's face was firm and unwavering as he said, "Yes."
Alice, with a smile on her face, nodded her head in excitement.
Holding my hand out for the goblet, Jasper gave it to me and took a step back. I went on. "The spell I'm going to pour over your wound will bind you to your oath. To break this promise will be equivalent to breaking a part of your soul."
Jasper walked behind Edward while Leah moved behind Alice.
"Once the potion mingles with your blood, you'll experience a type of rush. It's very overwhelming, so be ready." Giving the two of them a reassuring smile, I lifted the goblet over their outstretched hands and poured the potion over their wounds.
Edward took a couple of deep breaths, then closed his fist. "This isn't so bad." He panted.
Looking over at Alice, I silently chuckled as she fanned her hand across her face.
"Is it me, or is it getting a little warm?" she asked.
Emily and I took a step back, knowing what was about to happen next. Alice began to sway, and her eyes fluttered. Edward was doing the same.
"Take a deep breath," Emily yelled at the pair.
But it was too late; Jasper and Leah were already catching their fainting bodies and lowering them to the ground.
"This is going to be the best sleep they'll ever have." Leah laughed.
Nodding my head, I looked at my watch, and then up to the sky. "We'll give them thirty minutes, and then we'll load them into the RV. We've got a lot of ground to cover before nightfall."
One Month Later
Walking through the gate and past the tree line, it was a little surprising to see that no one had discovered the destruction of this community yet. I strolled around the deserted homes, enjoying the quiet of it all, but knew I needed to call in the others. Pulling out my phone, I sent a text off to the team, letting them know to come in. Making my way over to a burnt-down building, I pulled out my knife to scrape some potion residue off the charred wood.
"Did they seriously burn down their own building?" Marc asked.
Standing and holding my knife and the substance up to the sunlight, I smiled when I saw the shimmer it gave off. "The Coven didn't do this. It was Seraphs."
My audience laughed and shook their heads.
"Seraphs don't burn buildings down, we do." Jane chuckled.
"This group is different, and these were special circumstances," I said out loud, wiping my blade on my pants.
"And how would you know that, James?" asked my girl Victoria.
"Because, I just do." I smiled. Walking over to my girl and wrapping my arm around her, I explained, "Some long-lost relative told me to come and check this place out, and they also told me a really interesting story about what happened here."
Victoria shot me a curious look. "I thought you didn't know who your real family was?"
Shaking my head, I let go of Victoria and pulled out my vibrating phone as I replied, "I always knew my mother's name, but that was it. It was the only thing she was able to leave me when she was forced to give me up for adoption." Reading the message, I smiled and then quickly pocketed my phone. "Pick a home, set up camp, but we'll be leaving in the morning."
As the team drove the cars over to a deserted home, I made my way back over to the front gate and waited for mystery man to show up. I couldn't believe the phone call I'd received almost forty-eight hours ago. The witch I had been searching for my entire life, who had also been looking for me it seems, had been murdered.
That was the only question I wanted an answer to.
A few minutes later, I watched a silver Lexus make its way toward me, then park off to the side. The man who got out of the car was not the type I'd expect to be driving a luxury vehicle. Usually, when I see people driving cars like this, they could be lawyers or doctors with their fine attire and attitudes, but this guy looked like he could pass for a high school janitor at best. His clothes were wrinkled and dirty, his face bruised and swollen, and he looked like he hadn't slept in days. As he made his way toward me, I casually put my hands behind my back, resting one of them on the Glock tucked in the back of my pants.
"James," he said hoarsely, stopping a few feet away from me.
I laughed, gesturing at how he looked. "If I'm going to be honest, you're not what I expected."
He looked down at himself, and then unsuccessfully tried to wipe some of the dirt off his clothes. "I apologize," the man muttered. "I didn't want us meeting for the first time this way." Taking a step forward, he held out his hand for me to shake. "My name is Carlisle, and I was Esme's husband."
Letting go of the gun, I reached forward and shook his hand. "So, my mother's name was Esme?"
Carlisle only nodded his head, and then took a step back once I let go of his grip.
"But, you're not my father?"
"No," he answered quickly. "All I knew about him was that his name was Alec, and he was from the Freeland Coven, like your mother. After they were forced to give you up, he deserted her. No one has heard from him since."
Looking down at my shoes, I kicked the dirt and took a deep breath, reining in my anger. "And my mother?" I whispered. "What happened to her?"
"She was murdered. Hunted down by Seraphs, and after, they turned your brother and sister against me."
As I looked at him, my anger began to boil over. "Why," I growled. "Why did they murder her?"
Carlisle was hesitant, looking everywhere but at me, so I reached behind my back and pulled out my gun and pointed it at him.
"You will tell me why my mother was murdered," I yelled.
"She was trying to steal an ability for you," he rushed out, eyes staring at my gun. "She was caught, though, and the Seraphs killed her for it."
My whole life, all I'd wanted to know was where did I come from? My adoption was sealed, for the most part. All I had was a name—Esme—and a paper with a weird picture on it. Years later, I found out the picture was an occult symbol. The symbol for an Herbal Witch. I thought maybe I was a product of some weird cult, but when I became an adult, I went in search of anything I could regarding the symbol. A year later, I ran into witch hunters, and they explained to me how I was more than likely a product of two witches, born without an ability. They then told me I was lucky not to have been born an abomination, but I was furious. I vowed to find my parents and demand why I'd been so easily cast aside. More than anything, I wanted to punish all witch covens for forcing parents to abandon their children.
"How is that possible?" I asked. "You're either born a witch or you're not."
Carlisle shook his head and continued. "She was sure that if witches could remove magic from a person, then they could put magic in one, too." He gestured to the gate behind me. "She came back here to Freeland and begged for their help, but they turned her away and threatened to expose her, so …"
I looked behind me, and then back at Carlisle. "My—my mother did this?" I smiled, mildly impressed. "She killed off her coven to avenge me?"
"Yes," Carlisle said. "Because she loved you and was looking for you, and she wanted you to come home."
Stuffing the gun into the back of my pants, I closed the gap between Carlisle and me and grabbed his shirt, giving him a shake. "What do you want from me, huh? Why are you telling me this?" I screamed. "Unless you got some kind of hocus pocus spell up your sleeve to bring my mom back, why throw this at me now?"
"Because I want you to avenge her, just like she avenged you," he yelled back. "She was so close to making you one of us, and they took it away. They took your mother, my wife, and our family away from us. Someone has to pay."
Pushing him away from me, I turned around and ran my fingers through my hair. "She wanted me," I whispered to no one.
"Yes," Carlisle said, stepping toward me.
I looked at Carlisle and pulled out my cell phone. "If I'm doing this, you're coming with me." Sending a text to my team, letting them know we had a protected visitor, I went over to the gate and opened it. "Drive in and get settled. I want to know anything and everything about these Seraphs."
"So, you're going to help me?" he asked.
"Oh, I'm going to do more than help you." I laughed. "I'm going to finish the job my mother started, but this time, I'm going to take the power of the witch who stole my mother from me."
The look of rage that came from Carlisle was unnerving but needed. If he was going to be rolling with me, then he needed that hate to keep him motivated.
"I take it you know who this witch is?"
"Isabella Swan," he growled out. "And I know just how to find her."
The End...or is it?
Kris aka Mkystich