Upon hearing what my uncle Arnold had told me, as he sat in the blue dress, my anger caused my magic to react. Soon his dress was spun into a chrysalis with only his head sticking out. He was stuck, and the dress was now gooey in a sticky mess as he struggled to move.
“Celeste, please don’t act this way! Mmmpf.” the rest became inaudible.
I moved away from my uncle and sat in front of him. I was pissed.
“I’m not letting you out of that thing till you tell me the whole truth. I’m sick of my family and all the lies.”
“Celeste, I can barely breathe in this thing!” he said, struggling to open his mouth.
I loosened the grip of the cocoon slightly.
“Don’t care; get to talking,” I kicked the side of the cocoon, so he knew I was extra mad.
“If you would stop for a second and hear me out,”
“I can hear you just fine; now tell me everything!”
My eyes were black as rage filled them. I was prepared to turn my uncle into a toad if I had to or something worse.
“When Josephine did that spell on you, your mother, grandmother, and I decided that part of the spell would be to create a second you. You were born with a spirit attached to you. It looked exactly like you, was your every personality. Only there was no darkness in her eyes like there is in yours. You got everything that Josephine gave you, but something happened. You had a twin spirit- a ghost if you will- that may have died in the womb, but there she was when you were born. So we brought your twin to life to act as a decoy.”
“You mean you created a second me as a backup? So you were hoping that if Josephine hurt either of us- it would be her? How diabolical are you people?”
“No, it was so that if something happened to you because of Josephine, your magic wouldn’t die. There would always be a “you” to carry the magic. We didn’t trust Josephine not to carry out her evil plan of killing you to harness your unique powers, to say the least,”
“Unique how? I can barely boil water using my telekinesis.”
“We don’t know exactly, but it has an essence. It was able to assist us with bringing your twin to life. It was completely new.”
“Necromancy isn’t exactly new, Uncle,”
“It wasn’t Necromancy; it was an ability to change time and space and create a multiverse within you. That is why we don’t know what you can actually do. So please let me out of this thing!”
“No, I’m not finished with you yet. I want to know what you are going to do about Josephine. I need you to know that no matter what you say, she is a dead woman. I won’t be bringing her back from the dead afterward either.”
“I have not figured it out yet, but if it comes down to you or her, I will completely understand. Can you please get me out of this chrysalis?”
I nodded and swept my hand over him, allowing his cocoon to turn back into a blue dress.
I went to my uncle’s study and found where he kept his wine. I opened a bottle without using a glass and chugged half of it.
Arnold came in wearing a white t-shirt and regular pants.
“Yes, I had no choice, thanks to you!” he rolled his eyes. “Are you really drinking that without a glass?”
“What does it matter?”
“It is obvious you lacked a good upbringing.”
“Well, Josephine killed my mother, so what was left? A deadbeat father and a crazy grandma to raise me,”
“How is Mildred?”
“She doesn’t remember much about raising me. She is in a nursing home now.”
“I always liked your father’s mother; she was a lovely woman,”
“She still is,” I corrected him.
I tried not to be offended that my uncle Arnold had no hand in my upbringing. He was too much of a bachelor in those days. Taking on a different lover every other day of the week. I figured he was paying for it now.
“So, how are we going to find my twin?”
“I have some private eye connections up north. I just need to find the last place she resided, and then I’ll know where to go. I don’t even know her name.”
“So you, mom, and granny created my double and have no idea what her name is, who she was raised by or where she is living? Just keeps getting better and better!”
“We couldn’t interfere,” he snapped.
“If we knew where she was, it would make it ten times easier for Josephine to find her. Why do you think we sent you to live with your father’s mother- a non-witch?”
“I think I might have an idea what her name is, but only her first name.”
I picked up my phone and began to search the Facebook page for the bar I was at earlier that night. I scrolled through the photos hoping to get a glimpse of myself, my twin.
I was doing some private eye work of my own. A dark-haired woman was in the corner of one of the photos. I looked at her closely and realized that it was my twin. I zoomed in, but no name was attached to her face. Then I remembered the name, Deb.
“Uncle, her name is Deb.”
I picked up my coat and looked at my uncle’s confused face.
“What? How would you know? Were you using your powers?”
I rolled my eyes. “No, my common sense. Earlier tonight, when I was at that bar, the bartender called me Deb. So, I figure her name must be Deb.”
“Oh, well, why didn’t you say something earlier?”
“I just thought of it.”
“Let’s see what they know at the bar,”
“Kinda why I have my jacket on. Let’s go.”
My uncle was grabbing his jacket when suddenly, he stopped. He was looking at me with pure terror on his face.
“What is it?”
He went to speak when the entire room was filled with black smoke. I looked around me, and all I could see was darkness. Then I heard my uncle scream.
“Arnold!” I tried to reach him, but the dark smoke was almost solidified, and I could not see even two inches in front of me.
I screamed for him again and then saw something hairy in the doorway. I couldn’t make out what it was. I could only see red eyes and teeth. It was holding my uncle’s head in its hand, and out the door, it went.
I screamed again, terrified at what had just happened. I was scared to death, yet I needed to know what this was.
I closed my eyes and concentrated on it long enough to stop it from escaping this time. I saw it stop. I seemed to realize I was in pursuit of it. It turned again, running faster until it ducked out of the door to the underground cave of my uncle’s home.
When I got outside, I smelled sulfur and death in the air. The seaside was black, and the sky seemed to swirl into a tornado. There was nowhere to hide as I ran back into the cave dwelling to escape the massive storm that was now encompassing me.
I could hear glass shattering and people screaming. I cried thinking of my uncle and that creature. I was now calling myself, trying to escape the wind that seemed to follow me into the cave. Others there seemed to scatter as the storm entered the cave walls. I struggled to find safety when all at once, I screamed.
It was as if someone had hit a button. The wind, the people, and the beings that called this undersea dwelling home all froze in place. I could see books, clothes, and other random items floating in midair.
Beyond the cave walls and the cave’s opening, I saw it then. I saw the beast, and I focused all my energy into one force and, using my strength, moved the storm again, concentrating on the beast at the far end of the cave opening.
I ripped it to pieces with my mind. Hair, fingers, and intestines all blew to bits hitting the cave wall and splashing the others who were still frozen in time.
I took a deep breath and walked towards what was left of the thing. All I could make out were fangs and red glowing eyes, and next to it was my uncle’s head, still intact. I sighed, picking up his head. I supposed I would bury it with the rest of his body.
I sulked, trying to figure out what my next move would be. I went outside and saw that some of the other underwater creatures were glaring at me. I was no longer welcome at their home. I couldn’t blame them.
“What the hell happened?” It was Jack.
“She, it, I dunno it killed Uncle Arnold. I know why. She wants me to be alone and have no allies. I began to cry silently. Jack placed his tentacle on my shoulder.
“You have to leave here, Celeste,”
I nodded as was expected.
“I have to find my sister; she might be my only hope,”
“Well, it’s too bad you couldn’t bring Arnold back to life,”
“Yeah,” I said, realizing his severed head was still in my hands.
“He said he always wanted to be buried at sea,” Jack said, looking at the lead in my hands. “Maybe you should put that thing down now; we will find a nice coffin for it, Celeste,”
“No, I can’t. I have an idea,”
“What would that be?”
“I’m going to bring my uncle back from the dead!” I looked down at my uncle’s dead brown eyes.
Don’t get me wrong, I know I must have looked like an insane person holding onto his severed head, but I had been through A LOT at this point.
“How are you going to do that?”
“I’m going to have to possibly kill my twin sister to get her magic,”
Jack looked at me, stunned when suddenly his tentacles fell to the floor.
He had fainted.
“Jack!” I smacked his face, and he woke slowly.
“I don’t know what to say; this is all so weird and crazy!”
“Jack, do you have a large mirror?”
“Um, yes, my sister Ella does. Why do you need a mirror?”
“I need to try something.”
I figured since I didn’t know where my twin, Deb, was, I would use a mirror to try and locate her.
Jack found the large mirror, and I placed it in the corner of the room. Then I sat in front of it, closing my eyes. Then when I opened them, I stared deeply into them. I knew I only had so much time before my uncle’s remains began to smell, so this had to work, and it had to be quick! I needed to harness the rest of my magic to bring my dear old uncle back. He was the only other witch that was connected to this. I felt that if he was with me, we would have a better chance of killing Josephine and rescuing Adelaide. That is why Josephine had that creature kill him; I felt it in my gut. So, she wouldn’t expect me to raise Uncle Arnold from the dead.
I looked deeply into the mirror, focusing on my eyes and picturing where Deb would be. If you worked for the C.I.A., you might call it Remote Viewing. I saw her standing in line at a counter. I focused on her again, only I didn’t expect what would happen next.
I was slammed into the mirror face forward. Deb was strong, and she wasn’t letting me get her.
This was proving to be a bit harder than I expected. Of course, Deb would be a strong witch; she was half of me. My face was bleeding now. I sat back, and that is when I saw my reflection change before my eyes.
My eyes, once blue, were now hazel. My outfit changed, and I was standing in a department store staring at myself in a mirror.
I had somehow jumped into Deb’s body.
I looked at my reflection “Oh shit,”
This was beginning to be one hell of an adventure. What was I going to do now?
To be continued…
Dearest readers, I do hope you are enjoying my series that takes place in the fictional “ELDRITCH HARBOR.” If you are enjoying this series, I wanted to share with you I do have a Novella, COLLECTOR OF STOLEN BEINGS coming out in October that is a bit of a continuation of this story.
Follow me on AMAZON for updates on when you can preorder the story.