Here’s an idea I picked up from another author.
A short story, maybe the start of more.
A battle looms close, the Witches prepare. For what, who and why? Read on!
My cousin’s voice broke through my dreams, bringing me to alertness in a few seconds.
“Ava, come on! Aunty Em needs us.” Her voice is tight, demanding, unrelenting.
“Why?” I asked sleepily as I swung my legs out of bed, objecting to being woken.
“There’s a battle coming,” she tells me, her voice direct.
“Close?” I ask, pulling on some jeans and a hoodie as the adrenaline begins to course through my veins.
“Heading this way,” she confirms as I light the lamp in our shared room, then finish getting ready.
Ten thousand years ago, the old folk faded away, blending their bloodlines into the rat population we now call humanity. Gone were the Druids, the Dryads, the elves, the kinfolk. Thought long since vanished, no one cared for them any more. Or so the stories said. A thousand years ago, in the heart of the United Kingdom, a witch cast a spell to recall the old spirits back to the land. It wasn’t a huge spell, it didn’t need to be. Cast upon lay lines of old, the spell was simple, pure, efficient. “Bring back the kinfolk, slowly. Let their blood flow stronger through each succeeding generation.” It took a thousand years, but the spell came true in the Nineteen Seventies, when shifters began being known, when witches circles were more than the movies had portrayed. When the veil covering us all, shattered.
The kinfolk of old, were back. And they were mightily annoyed with their ancestors. Perhaps that was right, I wasn’t one to question them. Power struggles between the kinfolk communities were relentless, ongoing and doing as much damage as The Blending (as it was now known) had done thousands of years in the past.
I pulled my curved blades from their protective sheaths; I checked both, then returned them to their scabbard. Entering the main living room of my aunt’s hut, I can feel the magic pouring from her. She turns to my cousin Ella and me, nodding once.
“The battle is closer, two groups, one chasing the other. We must help those who flee and those that chase,” she looks at me, expectantly, and I nod.
“I understand,” I tell her. They need to be stopped; we Callaghan Witches are sworn to protect the wolf pack in this part of the Highlands; we have since before the spell was cast and our power jumped that night: it would, it was one of our ancestors who cast it. I kneel down just as Aunty Em had been moments ago. Through the floor, the vibrations could be felt. The woodlands were telling us who was where, and the trees were aiding.
I look up and smile at my aunt, then I head out of the door, taking my staff with me. I set off at a run, across dark covered paths, through the trees, asking for their guidance. On a small hill several minutes later, I breathlessly set my staff and cast the welcoming glow of safety, aware that my aunt was near and ready to set the shield, that my cousin has my flank on the far side, though hidden by the darkness. They’d awaken to her skills soon enough.
Retreating to the many shadows, the trees tell me when those who are hunted are near. Those that hunt, are about to become what they think they are doing: Hunted.
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