Young, Free and Travelling the World

Chapter One - Paris

It was a cool evening in Paris as the sunset swept across the sky. Many people were eating out and making the most of the delightful weather as the rain stopped for a brief moment. The busy traffic roared through the streets and pedestrians pushed their way through heavy crowds, but Samantha as did any other tourist, passed it all as typical, lively French city atmosphere.

Samantha was as young as she was free and planned to spend the next few months (or years) as a traveller, just wondering through the many countries of Europe at her leisure. Of course, she had a great advantage being an experienced witch and able to do anything she pleased, but Samantha was nevertheless wise with her magic, and constrained herself to only as much as was needed to get around (which was always a little more than what she set as a goal – Samantha was never one to want to use much of her magic).

Samantha, as it may seem was now in Paris, admiring the city and perfecting her already fluent French with locals. As she looked through the little stained-glass window of the café, she couldn't help but stare at those mortal couples with their hands intertwined and close. She had never had any real relationship because she just didn't have the time or patience, and this gave her a sort of pride that she was independent and doing her own thing her own way. Travelling is much better when you are free.

Suddenly there was a tinkle and a figure appeared in front of Samantha. Although she knew exactly who this was, she could not help but be a little surprised at her Mother's sudden appearance.

'Hello Mother! It is nice to see you,' Samantha said to her mother.

'Yes it is, but why are you sitting in this little grotto Samantha? Is there not any other restaurant in France worth eating at?' said her mother Endora with a turned up nose.

'Oh mother…this place is sweet and the owners are darlings. They are helping me perfect my French', replied Samantha.

'But you spoke fluent French at the age of three, have you lost it already? If you ask me, I'd say that you enjoy giving others a little show of your proficiency in the….what we call the….language of love. Am I right?' Endora whispered with a sly grin.

'Oh Mother! You know fully well that I am perfectly content with the way people see me and I am not in the mood at the moment to try and show off, if that is what you are thinking'.

'Well, I was thinking more along the lines of something else, but now that you mention it….'

'MOTHER, please! For goodness sake, speaking French will not enhance or hinder my love life, nor will I tolerate it doing so! Please leave now', as Samantha couldn't help but feel slightly embarrassed at the conversation that she was having with her mother.

'Well Samantha, if you say so, but if I were you I wouldn't count on it', she said with a devious grin.

'Mother!' Samantha warned.

'Oh well if you must Samantha, but only expect me to join you for dinner in a week…or perhaps when you find a nice restaurant, as I'll be in India enjoying myself with some of my local friends', and with that she clicked her fingers and disappeared.

'Good', Samantha murmured with a nod and a smile. Whilst she adored her mother, Samantha found her a little extraordinary at times.

***

SAMANTHA'S BEWITCHED DIARY

Entry one

I was out walking today and the most peculiar thing happened! I simply said 'hello' to a handsome young man and suddenly he was swooning over me! I didn't think that I was that pretty to deserve his type of behaviour, but something must have gone on in his mind that I didn't understand. What is more, when I arrived at the counter in a little café and ordered my meal I began to feel a little silly as well after noticing how gorgeous the waiter looked in his dirty little apron. He looked at me very strangely indeed and then swapped duties with a young girl who then began to take my order. I was pulled back into my senses and felt very ashamed of my behaviour.

Dinner (alone) was pleasant and it was not until I arrived back at my hotel asking for the room key that a woman began to compliment me profusely on myself. I thanked her many times and after a while decided to walk away because I was a little bit frightened. After all, it wasn't really normal to have women you don't know adore you to aggression!

I have been thinking about all the events that have occurred throughout the day and what on earth would have caused them. I have thought about Mother, but I personally don't think that she would bother pulling a joke on me like this, but I shall see. In the meantime, however, I shall try to keep my mouth shut!

***

As Samantha stayed in Paris for the next few days, she said as little as she possibly could and made as little trouble as possible. Although she loved Paris very much, it was becoming very annoying having such little to say. She was not used to much solitary and could not expect her mother for another few days.

After visiting the Champs Elysees for the second time, Samantha found a young man asleep on the cold cobbled floor of the streets. Although she was very surprised that no one else seemed to have noticed anything about the man or even his existence, she patted his shoulder lightly in attempt to wake him. Although only soft touch, the young man awoke and quickly jumped to his feet.

'Oh darn it; I must not have done it right! Darn, darn!' he muttered to himself.

'I am awfully sorry to have woken you sir, but you see, I didn't think, and perhaps you may agree, that this is not quite the ideal resting place?' Samantha said as kindly as she could.

'Yes, of course I quite agree. But how many people have noticed me here?' he mumbled, looking embarrassed.

Samantha looked around, 'Well, it seemed that no one but me saw you lying there, and that is why I came over'.

The young man looked relieved, 'Oh good, good'. But suddenly he looked up at Samantha with a confused look on his face, 'Did you just say that….you were the only one who noticed me'.

'Yes'.

'Are you a….you know…..um… (Samantha looked at him confused)…maybe not…well never mind.', and with that he gestured politely his thanks and trotted off.

Samantha paused for a moment, thinking about what the man could have meant.

***

SAMANTHA'S BEWITCHED DIARY

Entry Two

Today I was out walking (again!) and found a young man lying on the ground! I awoke him and he seemed to think that something had gone wrong and really hoped that no one had noticed him (though I must say that if I was him, I would hope so too. But then again, I don't think that I would ever go to sleep on the streets). But here is the weird part – he tried to ask me something and I got the feeling that it was about something that I wasn't expecting to be asked in Paris. Maybe about my…..witchcraft?!

He soon left after I seemed completely confused about what he was trying to say and since then I have thought about it a lot. I believe that he was a Warlock, trying sleep with a levitating, invisibility and silencing charm on himself which only works for mortals, which was why nobody but me noticed him. Obviously he got the invisibility and silencing part right, but not the levitating which was why he was so shocked that he was on the ground. And that also explains why he was going to ask me if I was a witch because I noticed him! It all makes sense!

I wonder if I'll see him again. I might be able to ask him about that awful trouble with speaking French to others. It didn't happen to him when I spoke to him, but it did when I spoke the waiters at the restaurants and everywhere else. It really is quite annoying!

***

For many more days, Samantha stayed in Paris searching for the mysterious young man and avoiding her large collection of worshipers – all the people that she had spoken to. Despite how beautiful the city was, Samantha was getting quite tired of all the things that were happening in it. Mother had not shown up, which did not go down very well with Samantha.

'My mother sometimes drives me crazy! She says she is going to turn up and then doesn't, or says she is not going to turn up, and then does!'

Samantha suspected that her mother was still in India enjoying herself. It was all very well mother was having a good time, but surely it wasn't enough trouble just to pop in, literally.

However, finally just as Samantha was about to give up all hope in Paris, she saw a familiar young man turn the corner of her street. She darted in his direction trying to catch up.

'Hey! Wait!' she yelled.

He turned back to look who was attempting to catch his attention.