The room was full of witches and wizards; it was a veritable sea of red in the ballroom. Lenka stood before the iron arch, her delicate fingers caressing it lightly. Ezzie found herself drawn to the strange woman; she couldn’t help but stare. Lenka caught her looking and smiled.
Mina and the other coven elders walked and stood next to Lenka and the arch. The buzz of the crowd hushed as Mina began to speak.
“Thank you all for being here tonight. Lenka, I’m happy to host you and your coven.” She inclined her head towards the tall blonde woman. “This spell will take every one of us to complete this evening. We will begin shortly. Winifred has kindly provided a wonderful spread of food.” She gestured to the far wall in the enormous room and several huge tables appeared. Every kind of food imaginable was there. “Please enjoy.” Mina smiled and waved her hand for everyone to go eat.
Lenka’s words gnawed at Ezzie. What on earth had she meant by marked? She wandered around the room, looking for her grandmother, but Winifred was nowhere to be found. She hated the fact that she would have to wait until the end of the evening to find out what Lenka had meant.
A while later, Mina called for everyone’s attention. “Please, we are going to begin, so would you all join us by the arch?” Her slender frame leaned against a large table next to the arch. She waved her hands, and various jars appeared on the table as well as a giant pewter cauldron. She flicked her wrist, and the cauldron floated to the ground, sitting atop a stack of logs burning with witch fire.
Ezzie edged closer to the front. She wanted a good view of what was going to happen. She spied her grandmother at the end of the table, gathering jars together. A few members from each coven filed to the front and stood on either side of the arch: Mina and her four, and Lenka with hers.
Winifred dumped a series of jars into the cauldron, the contents of which sizzled against the sides. “We’ll be ready momentarily,” she said to Mina.
Mina turned to face the crowd of people. “Everyone join hands and form a circle around the arch, please.”
Ezzie was unsure what to do with herself, but Winifred gestured for her to go stand against the wall.
Lenka joined hands with Mina in front of the arch. The eight people with them formed a smaller circle around them.
“Is everyone clear on what we’re doing here?” Mina asked. Everyone murmured their ascent as Winifred set jars of a smoking potion in between each person in the inner circle. Gregory was on hand to help, placing jars in between people in the outer circle.
A fine mist began to rise from the jars and shroud the people in the circles. Ezzie had to strain her eyes to see what was happening. Winifred joined the outer circle and clasped hands with the people on either side of her.
“We will begin,” Lenka said softly.
They all began chanting as one. The words were too low for Ezzie to hear, but she could clearly see they had an effect on the mist. It began to wind itself around the arch, glowing a light red color. As one, they raised their hands above their heads, still clasped with the people on either side.
About Jessica Gibson
Jessica Gibson is a recovering bookaholic, she’s down from four books a week to a more reasonable one. It was that love of words and creativity that made her dream about writing her first book. That dream was hidden for years, always put on the back burner, filed away in the “someday” section, until her husband Matt gave her the kick in the pants she needed to actually get off her butt and write.
Jessica and Matt live in Southern California and have a serious addiction to reality tv shows like Pawn Stars and American Restoration. They have one son and hope to add to the family in the near future.