20 days left to nominate this book
Back to top

First pages

She looked around the stark living room in her uniform house and saw exactly what she wanted. A safe place where she could hide if the need arose and blend in while she was studying the magic of electricity in the human world. The spot she had chosen was perfect because it was close to a large highway and had plenty of lights surrounding the outside area. The best part is that her house is the busiest on Halloween and she always gives out candy that is better than anything the rest of the houses give out. She also doesn’t ever run out of it. The kids love her, the parents are jealous. It was an easy escape if the locals started coming at her with their pitchforks and torches screaming “Burn the witch!” She wasn’t a witch, she was a druid who specialized in elemental magic so their fire wouldn’t have much effect on her but humans were always so sensitive about things they didn’t understand.

She had installed a few cameras just to be extra safe. Bridget had said she was paranoid but Mera just wanted to make sure she wasn’t being watched while practicing her magic. She also didn’t want to be in the middle of a protection spell or working with electric magic and have her nosy neighbor come asking for a cup of sugar for a batch of cookies she was baking for her obese and spoiled grandson. She didn’t really care for the old woman but she didn’t hate her, even checked on her every once in a while. Mera had put a camera in her house just to make sure that she didn’t keel over in the middle of the night without someone knowing. It was the grandson she hated. A spoiled brat who didn’t appreciate what his grandmother actually did for him. She was always sure to check the cameras before she left the house, before and after working with magic, and just before she fell asleep. She was also keen on double-checking her doors and triple-checking her windows. Bad things always came through the windows, but bad people came through the door.

Tonight was no different. She had already checked her doors, and she had just finished her windows and closed the heavy curtains that kept most peering eyes away. She walked in to her well-lit bathroom and started brushing her teeth. She had charmed the dishes into doing most of the work for her. With a mouthful of toothpaste she checked her wards. The first was for physical disturbances, even an ant would set it off, and one had, it gave her a heart attack so she installed the cameras for an easy double check. The second was for ethereal disturbances. She had never liked talking to ghosts and wanted an easy way to dispel them if they ever came looking for guidance. The last was for magical disturbances, if another druid or someone else wielding magic were to turn up she wanted to know right away. Each one gave off the strength she had assigned to them. She put her toothbrush back into its holder, rinsed out her mouth, and walked over to her bed.

She slipped out of her jeans and tee-shit. She threw them into a pile that could be considered dirty in the corner of her room and put on the sweat pants and tank she always wore to bed. She pushed her hands above her head and yawned letting magic turn on her screens to take one last look at the cameras. Brew, her calico was waiting in his perfect circle sleeping pose. She remembered when she had adopted him. He was the only calico at the shelter and his colors blended together in some kind of witches brew. She loved him and he tolerated her. Before she could lift her feet from the cold floor and sneak them under Brew, her phone rang. Brew lifted his head and meowed at the disruption.

“Oh, calm down, it’s just Bridget,” Mera whispered to him. Brew put his head back down with one eye still slit open just in case. “Hey, Bridget,” Mera said into her phone, “why the late…”

“You need to get out of your house,” Bridget said on the other side of the phone. Sometimes the woman had no bedside manner.

“What? Why?”

“Get out of your house, now! I’ll explain later.” Mera was about to try and ask Bridget why she was calling again but all three of her wards went off screaming an alarm in her head. She snapped on the cameras and Brew startled and stared at the door with his hair sticking up and a growl at the back of his throat. The cameras didn’t show anything out of the ordinary. Just the outside areas of her house. The back-yard was empty and the grass was getting long, she would have to cut it soon. The front was just the street with no strange cars. Everywhere seemed clear.

“A spell carrying dead ant?” She asked Brew. He meowed for a reply which could have been interpreted as either him rolling his eyes or an agreement.

“Get out!” Mera had forgotten about Bridget. The phone hung up and Mera heard a scream. It was blood-curdling and it sounded like it was coming from her neighbor’s house. Mera moved closer to the monitors, picked up Brew by the scruff and pulled him close. She switched to the camera that watched her neighbor’s kitchen. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary except for the knife on the counter. She had always kept a clean house and nothing was ever out of its place. She moved the camera around and saw drops of dark liquid on the floor. Before she could make out what it was something caught her attention on the cameras.

They were standing at her front door, smiling with faces covered in blood. Mera barely stifled her scream. One by one they licked their lips and moved forward. An invisible force held them back but only slightly. It looked like they were sniffing the air when her wards screamed at her. For the first time in forever they were breaking around these three things. Bridget’s words echoed. Something was seriously off about this group. They were still pushing against her wards when she turned off the screen, grabbed her phone with her empty hand, and slipped on some flip flops. When she turned back around white teeth and lips stained red with blood flashed in front of her. She flinched back and disappeared before whatever or whoever they were could grab her.

***

The pain had dissipated from what could only be described as a Turning. It felt like everything inside of me was being burnt away and replaced by something stronger. It wasn’t quite a rage and it wasn’t like I was going to go around screaming and trying to smash people’s heads in. It was more of a hangry situation. That anger you get when you are hungry but there isn’t any food around and you know it or even when there is food around but you don’t know what to eat. That’s how I was feeling. A pit was open and I had no choice but to fill it. The problem was, nothing sounded appetizing. There isn’t really anything you want to eat after you feel your insides burn for a good hour.

I walked out of the room the nurse had put me in before she gave me that awful injection and saw her standing across the hall. She didn’t speak, didn’t even look up from what she was reading, she just pointed down the hall to a door marked three. I went up to the door and was going to leave if it hadn’t been for the smell. It smelled amazing, like a four course dinner was going on and I was just given the key to eat it. I stumbled into the room with my stomach leading the way with no caution of what might be on the other side. When I looked up I noticed five strangers staring at me from different parts of the room.

“Hey, there’s six of us now. Why are we in here?” A guy to my left asked.

“How would I know?” I said trying to stand straight.

“He wasn’t asking you,” the young lady right next to him barked.

“All of you grab a straw. Your mean will be ready soon,” a calm voice sounded over the intercom. Straws dropped from the ceiling and the smell became stronger. A delicious meal served through a straw. Innovation at its finest.

Each of us took a straw in hand. A couple of the loners in the darker corners of the room growled at each other. Then the straws filled and each of us was drinking without worry or care of the others around us. I opened my eyes after most of the ecstasy had passed to see that the straws were filled with a thick red liquid. I let it roll around on my tongue before taking another gulp and tasted the reality for the first time. These straws were feeding us blood and it tasted like the finest meal I’d ever tasted. A few of the women had noticed at this point and let out bubbly screams. The men, curious as to what had them scared looked and tore the straws from their mouths.

Their eyes changed as the blood dripped on the floor. They looked like they were letting a priceless artifact go to waste. They scrambled to put the straws back into their mouths and continued suckling on it. My straw never left my mouth. It tasted too good and I was starving. This was filling the pit that had been created by the Turning. I didn’t want it to stop. Seconds later, the straws ran dry and the others were lying back in an after-food coma. Outside the room I could hear someone talking.

“Come on, I know where to find some good food,” the voice said. They were going for a hunt. No doubt they had been through what I had just gone through and they were craving more. How they could possibly fit more in their stomachs was beyond me.

My group was coming out of their food-coma states when the same nurse in the grey scrubs came in.

“I hope you all ate well,” she said in a quiet voice that was just above a whisper. “I wanted to give you all the pamphlet about how you are going to feel over these next few weeks. Just read it when you want and if you are feeling up to it, I know of some groups going out for a hunt in a bit. They love showing new people the ropes. I’m sure we could find you a spot in any of those groups.”

The guy who was talking a lot earlier took one of the pamphlets and read part of it aloud: “’It is recommended that you eat twice a day for the next few weeks to curb your hunger and to learn about your new abilities.’ What new abilities?”

“You probably noticed your heightened sense of smell, but you also have the ability to teleport short distances, night vision, and all of you have one ability that specific to you. Others may have it but in varying strengths. That is for you to discover on your own. I’m afraid we have to prep this room for our next patients.”

“Can’t we get more food?” The girl who barked at me before asked in a subdued tone.

“Out in the real world, yes. Just make sure to hunt responsibly. It can be a little daunting but you’ll get used to it. Do you want me to send you to one of the hunting groups?” The nurse asked, obviously hoping for a healthy appetite. Three of them nodded and went with the nurse but I was left with the creepy dude in the far corner along with whom I assumed was his boyfriend.

“I know where they guys next door are going,” he said standing and brushing invisible dirt off of his jacket just to look cool.

“How do you…” the guy next to him started but paused, “that’s your ability? Super hearing?”

“Yep. So how about it?” They both looked at me like I was the deciding factor here. “You’re the only chick left, so how about you choose.” He said looking me straight on.

“Then let’s go, I could eat another meal.” They smiled as we headed out of the office and down to a rich neighborhood.

“There’s an old lady around here, I doubt anyone will miss her,” the guy’s boyfriend said.

“There’s hardly enough blood in an old lady for three growing kids,” leather jacket said. “By the way, I’m Kyle and this is my S.O. Liam. Nice to meet you…”

“Taylor. I’m Taylor.”

“Nice to meet you, Taylor. Shall we feast?” We barged in to the old woman’s house and found her in the kitchen doing dishes. She screamed when Liam gouged into her neck. Each of us took a turn draining the life out of the woman and left her dead on the cold tile.

“I smell someone next door. Young, afraid,” I said, nearly hyperventilating. I tried to wipe the blood off of my mouth but only succeeded in smearing it.

“Child?” Liam asked with a lick of his lips.

“No, adult, but younger than this bag of dust,” I said motioning to the old lady.

“Let’s introduce ourselves then,” Kyle said and they teleported out of the house to the front of the next door. They smiled as they pushed their way in.

“Weird resistance, why can’t we get through?” Liam asked.

“Just keep moving forward. We’re making progress, and I’m hungry,” Kyle replied. The three of us pushed through and teleported into the living room. Fear was heavy on the air. There was a shuffling sound coming from a closed door. I made my way up to it and thrust it open. A young woman in pajamas was holding her cat and staring at us like a deer in the headlights. I reached out to grab her but she vanished and my hands grabbed thin air.

“What the fuck?”

***

Mera’s flinch was so severe that when she appeared she fell backward. Brew, not wanting to be squashed, jumped out of her arms adding to her momentum. Feeling a bruised ass in the future, Mera braced herself and was surprised when she was caught and lifted back to a standing position. She turned around to see Bridget looking at her with a questioning face.

“I take it you wanted your timing to be more dramatic,” Bridget said moving away to the far corner of her room.

“I didn’t really know why you were telling me to get out of my house. I tried to check my cameras but when I didn’t see anything I thought you were over-reacting,” Mera said picking Brew back up with much protest from him.

“Why did you bring Brew? As far as we can tell they don’t eat cats.” Brew hissed at Bridget.

“They don’t eat cats yet. Besides I’d never hear the end of it if I left him there to fend for himself.” Brew rubbed against Mera’s face and started purring.

“I just need to grab a few more things then we can head to the grove,” Bridget said moving to her closet and grabbing books and other magical items.

“Wait, we’re going home?”

“Yes we are. We have to tell the Queen everything that is going on out here. First, change into some decent clothes. Then you can tell me everything you saw.”

“Don’t know if you noticed, but I didn’t have time to pack,” Mera said. Bridget motioned over to some clothes lying on her bed. Mera put Brew down to let him wander and picked out a pair of jeans and a forest green button up shirt.

She walked out to Bridget’s bathroom and noticed just how alike their houses were. Both were barely decorated with only a small feeling like anyone lived here. The only difference was that Bridget lived on a large farm on the outskirts of a city. Those creatures wouldn’t make it out here for a little while. They seemed to be looking for a quick fix, something to take the edge off before hunting big time. They looked human, but they were acting stronger, like they weren’t really afraid of getting hurt. They even pushed through her barrier which shouldn’t happen. And those teeth, she could still see them, so white like the walls of a hospital.

“You ready to tell me what you saw?” Bridget knocked on the door to the bathroom.

“Just a sec,” Mera called, pulling on the pants before opening and nearly knocking Bridget over again. “Sorry, just thinking.”

“Don’t worry about it. Why don’t we have a cup of tea and you can tell me what you saw.” Bridget led Mera down to her kitchen which looked more lived in than the rest of the house. A laptop was standing open at the edge of her table and Brew was drinking out of a water bowl near the door.

“Where’s Macadamia?” Mera asked watching Brew drink like a delicate lady from the oversized bowl.

“She’s outside making the rounds. She’ll be in shortly and I’m sure she’ll be happy to see Brew.” Brew twitched his ears when he heard his name but kept drinking. “So, tell me what happened. Your landings are, more often than not, very graceful.”

“I was talking to you when I heard my elderly neighbor scream. So I turned on the camera I put in her house and saw a dark liquid on the floor. Then these three things, I’m not going to call them people because they looked almost feral, appeared in front of my door and started pushing against my wards. You yelled at me to get out of my house again and when I turned around to leave one of them was reaching for my shoulder.”

“So they didn’t bite you?”

“Why would they bite me?” Mera asked. She took a sip of her tea and breathed out to cool the rest of the hot liquid.

“That’s how they eat. And they are people, or were. Tonight’s events have been all over social media. They’re calling it the Turning. Young and old are going to their doctors to become this new and improved human that can reportedly teleport, they have the same sense of smell as a dog, or stronger, they are stronger than a normal human, they drink blood, and each one of them has a special ability, some of them have the same but a varying strengths. Some of your historians are saying that these singular abilities have some connection to the personality of the new human.” Mera looked down into her glass. Bridget had sounded so calm while describing these things but Mera had faced them. These creatures were killers.

“And what are we supposed to do about all of this? Why haven’t they come here yet?”

“We aren’t going to do much of anything until we talk to the Queen. They have, I chased them off with Macadamia.”

“You used your powers outside of the grove?”

“So have you,” Bridget said rolling her eyes.

“Yeah, but chasing off those things, that had to take a lot of power,” Mera said in a small voice.

“All I had to do was scare them. It wasn’t too hard. Anyway, we should get going soon. Macadamia! Come here, girl!” There was the noise of sprinting paws and the flap of a dog door. Around the corner, in all her glory, came Macadamia. A blonde lab with the smarts of a Saint Bernard. She saw Brew and crouched into the play position. Brew growled and backed away from the door. She pounced and he ran trying to stay out of her reach. “Shall we?” Bridget asked following the noises of a dog and cat rushing through the house. We went back up to her room and she handed me one of her suitcases full of books.

“Did you have to pack all of the spell books?” Mera asked almost dropping the suitcase on her toe.

“Didn’t want them falling into the wrong hands. Besides you never know what you’ll need to fight a foe.”

“So we’re calling them ‘foe’ now? Seems sudden.”

“Not with how they treated you. We are calling them foe until they prove otherwise. Now, do you think you can manage to land on your own this time? I have my hands full with the rest of the bags and Macadamia.”

“I can manage. Brew, are you ready to go?” Brew meowed and they all disappeared in an instant.

***

Time zones had always been confusing. Mera had tried to commit them all to memory but she could never remember why there were so many. She understood that different areas went by different times because of how the Earth rotated around the Sun but she never could get the names straight. Because of this she tended to stay put in one place and keep her contact to a minimum outside of that one time zone.

The main grove was in Ireland, a small area hidden from the public eye with a simple spell. If a human ever wandered into the grove they would grow drowsy, fall asleep and the patrols would carry them out and make sure they were pointed in another direction. Of course, stories spread that the area was cursed and after some time the stories became so outlandish that the druids who lived inside even told their children the horrors of the invisible border. Mera had heard many of these stories as a child but her curious nature kept her from abiding by their foreboding rules, much to the dismay of her mother and father. She had grown up in the Ireland grove but was sent to the United States of America to do research on the culture of North American druids and their styles of living. That was when she really started abiding by her limited contact outside of her time zone rule.

The grove was a solid day ahead of what she was used to so it was still night when she and Bridget arrived except that the entire grove was in a chaotic state of movement. The rush of druids felt like an unorganized surprise party was about to unfold and the unlucky target would be trampled by the very people trying to entertain. Most of the druids passed by without any acknowledgement of these new comers but there were a few that shouted hurried hello’s and the occasional embrace. Brew was dodging the feet of the passerby when Mera picked him up. Macadamia was excited to be around so many new people ripe for her petting pleasure. Mera and Bridget made their way through the organized chaos of movement to the library. Young druids were being pushed from the room and large tables holding maps of every grove location lay in disarray on top. Bridget straightened one of the maps to reveal the location of the grove both her and Mera had been studying.

“What do you think is going on?” Mera asked looking around at the other locations. Not every grove was on the table but a good majority were there and the librarians were pulling more and tossing them on the table.

“Feels like war,” Bridget said reaching down and petting Macadamia under the table.

“We haven’t been at war with humans in centuries, why would we break that now?” Mera dodged an incoming map from the second floor.

“These aren’t the same humans that attacked the groves and tried to burn our ancestors for being witches. They are evolving and we don’t have the power to stop it. War may be our only option if we are going to survive.”

“Excellent point, Archdruid Bridget. Archdruid Mera, welcome home to both of you,” Queen Karla and her trophy husband King Thomas walked into the light near the table. The room that was once in a flurry of paper and sound became still. Pages stopped moving, the librarians froze mid-step.

“My Queen, we are honored to be in your presence,” Mera said with a deep bow. Bridget followed suit, standing from her place and bowing to both the Queen and the King.

“Please, no need for all the glamor here. We have troubling times ahead and so we must all work together in order to free ourselves from what seems like a bleak future.” Queen Karla took the head seat at the table and King Thomas stood behind her chair keeping an ever watchful eye on his charge and lover.

“As you wish my lady. Who else are we waiting on?” Bridget asked moving back to her chair.

“A few other druids who were out on their research duties when the attacks began. When they arrive I will explain everything I know about these Dhampir and what we can do to stop them.”

“Are they true Dhampir, my Lady?” Mera asked.

“None of the vampire clans claim to have any knowledge of them, so far all we can tell is that one of the human scholars chose the name for the power behind it.” Three more Archdruids walked in to the bleak library and bowed to Queen Karla. She lifted her hand and motioned towards the seats, “please, all of you sit. We have much to discuss and not much time for the discussion.” Mera snatched a spot next to Bridget and the other three sat in varying spots around the table of maps.

“Yesterday, around seven in the evening,” Queen Karla began, rising from her seat, “we received word of a possible human evolution. Seeing as how our generation has not witnessed one I went to observe what this could possibly mean for our species. When I arrived at one of the human hospitals I saw a line stretching around the entire perimeter twice.” Queen Karla pulled out a map and pointed to the hospital she had watched. “With each human that entered, five dhampir exited with blood staining their teeth and lips. I sat and observed for hours watching the sun rise and expecting them to burn. Their skin didn’t turn red with the heat of the sun nor did any burst into flame. None of the vampire clans have laid claim to this creation and we expect that none ever will. They do not appear to be from vampire descent.” The Queen paused and looked around the room. “So far it was a human that chose the name.”

“Won’t the vampires strike against them for using that name without understanding the cultural significance?” Archdruid Richard asked investigating a map of Brazil.

“As far as we can tell they don’t care as long as these dhampir don’t attack them so we likely will not receive help from the vampire clans during this war.”

“Are any of the other fae looking to join our cause?” Mera asked.

“No. We are alone as of this point.” The room took on a somber tone of near defeat. “I have one question for all of you gathered here. You are only a few of the Archdruids studying the groves from other countries, were any of you caught or seen using your powers to escape the dhampir?” Mera raised her hand along with Archdruid Sahara and Richard. “I see.” The Queen looked sad. “For now, all of you need to lay low. If there are things in your previous homes then please take someone with you and try to retrieve them. If they cannot be retrieved then they must be destroyed. The last thing our species needs right now is a new witch hunt.” The Queen and her lover left through the dark of the library and the five Archdruids parted ways to collect their things.

“You gonna help me get some of my stuff back?” Mera asked Bridget who was wrestling a stick away from Macadamia.

“I suppose. Maybe we’ll get to see a dhampir in action.”

“That’s the last thing I want to see right now. I’m gonna go take a nap then we can head out. It’s been a long day.” Bridget nodded her way and threw the stick for Macadamia across the wide field. Mera walked into her assigned room and flopped onto the bed. Her eyes closed and she dropped into a dreamless sleep.

***

Mera had been pacing all night. She knew she had to convince Bridget to tag along to her house to get some of her supplies, like clothes and books about magic that normal people didn’t need to read. Of course, most of her spell books were protected but if a human found their way into one of them it would only lead to trouble. The main issue would be convincing Bridget to leave the safety of the grove. Mera didn’t want to leave either but she wanted some regular clothes to change into and the ability to look up her spells whenever she wanted. She had made some serious headway into the power of electricity and those notes, at least to her, were invaluable.

“Could you stop? You’re making me dizzy and agitating Macadamia,” Bridget said from her cot in their shared room.

“If I stop will you hear me out?” Mera asked not pausing to look Bridget in the eye.

“About what?”

“I need to go back to my house and get my notes and some normal clothes.” Bridget laughed herself into a sitting position.

“If we go back there we risk getting killed or worse, studied. Even with another person the risk is too high.” Mera sighed and kept pacing.

“I need those notes. They could help us with this new enemy. Besides, do you really want me to keep pacing?” Mera asked moving between her cot and the door. Brew was sleeping on her cot in his perfect circle, the colors of his fur swirling to match his name.

“Fine, will you, by the Gods and Goddesses stop pacing if I take you to get your damn notes?”

“I swear. And they aren’t damn notes, they’re notes on the power of electricity and the possibility of druids wielding that power,” Mera said stopping her pacing and patting Brew on the head. “We’ll be back soon, I just gotta go get some stuff from the house. Did you want me to grab your favorite toy?” Brew let out a muffled mew that Mera took as an affirmative. Bridget grabbed her by the arm and as they walked through the door they were transported away from their room in the Tree to Mera’s suburban house.

Her lights were out and there was a foul smell permeating the area around her neighbor’s house. It smelled like someone had taken a garbage truck full of rotting corpses in plastic bags and dumped it behind this door. Mera didn’t have the nerve to go in, she knew that the kind old lady who had cared too much for a family that thought of her as a burden was dead. She would say a few words for her soul in private when they returned to the grove.

“Didn’t they clean out the body after they killed whoever lived there?” Bridget asked covering her nose and breathing deep through her mouth.

“Her family hated her, I doubt anyone came to claim her and bury her.” Mera was on the verge of tears. “Let’s get inside and grab my stuff. The sooner the better. We don’t want to get caught.”

Mera put her palm over the lock on the door and after a few clicks it opened effortlessly. Bridget rolled her eyes and Mera ignored her, moving through the house without any stealth. She made it to her bedroom and dug through her closet for a few sets of clothes.

“Where are your notes? I can get them while you deal with the more important things.” Sarcasm flooded out from Bridget’s mouth. Mera was still stuck on the old woman.

“Living room, small desk. It’s charmed so make sure to check the seal before opening it.” Bridget walked out of the bedroom and Mera shoved the essentials into her bag. Before she zipped it closed she stepped over to Brew’s bed and grabbed his favorite toy, a cloth cigar filled with catnip. She tossed that on top and closed up the bag. She jogged out to the living room where Bridget was opening her desk.

“It was still sealed, doesn’t seem like anyone touched it.”

“Good, they shouldn’t have been able to see it either. I let you see it so you could get it open but normally…” Mera paused and looked around the room. She tiptoed to the nearest window and lifted the bottom blinds. “Shit.”

“What is it?” Bridget asked grabbing the pile of notes and putting them in her backpack.

“Those dhampir are here. They must have smelled us or something. They’re getting really close to my wards. We need to get out of here.” Mera said. Bridget grabbed her arm and they were both back in the Tree.

“That was too close,” Bridget said throwing the bag of notes onto Mera’s cot.

“Don’t worry, I won’t be going back. Thanks for the help, couldn’t have gotten it done without you.” Mera sat on the edge of her cot and Brew looked at her with a scowl. “I got your toy, you’re welcome.” She laid the cigar next to his paw. He reached out and put his paw around it and fell back asleep.

“Archdruids Bridget and Mera please report to the library for your job assignments.” The voice rang out in their heads. Their favorite librarian was still around and still fond of giving the orders.

“Archdruid Castell,” they said in unison remembering her harsh punishments and her sweet rewards when they finished their lessons. The walked out of their dorm and Macadamia followed.

“She’s so well behaved,” Mera said and Macadamia wagged her tail faster.

“She knows that if she misbehaves she gets to sleep off of the bed. I taught her that it was in her best interest to follow the directions given.”

“Brew just scowls if I tell him to do something,” Mera said with a pout.

“That’s because he’s a cat,” Bridget said and Macadamia’s tail went faster.

“So good to see you ladies,” Archdruid Castell said from behind them. “I’ve been looking forward to this all day.

“Don’t you hate us?” Mera asked losing all subtlety.

“Of course not, I wanted to see how you two have improved since your relocation.” She was smiling and she embraced both of us and tried to hand us handfuls of candy.

“Ah.” Was the only sound Bridget could manage.

“Right, for your jobs.”

“Jobs?” Bridget asked.

“Everyone does their role around here. Bridget, you’ll be helping in the fields to bring life to the plants and revitalize those that are not looking the greatest. Mera, you are to put books away in the library and in your free time you are to continue your research.” Archdruid Castell said.

“That seems really easy,” Bridget said looking at Mera’s jaw lying on the floor.


AUTHOR Q&A

About me

I am a recent college graduate who finally found time to write my story. It is a pleasure to finally share it with readers. It has been a long road just for this story and I'm happy and sad that it is over so soon. I have loved writing stories since high school and haven't stopped even after graduation. I'm hoping to one day make a career from my stories but until then I'll continue selling games to those who play them.

Q. What is the inspiration for the story?
A.
It's funny, because this question ties in to the last question about what inspires my cover. Since reading a series by Kevin Hearne I wanted to write my own story about druids. I love how nature has always connected to mystical ideas and wanted to address how that has affected my daily life.
Q. Which writers inspire you?
A.
There is a long list here but I will keep it to three who have inspired me to write. The first being Ray Bradbury whose stories are extremely impactful. Stephen King because he taught me to kill my darlings and Kate Griffin for showing mysticality in modern settings. Thank you to all.
Q. What books are you reading now?
A.
I am reading a Neil Gaiman collaboration titled Good Omens and I started a book by Antoine de Saint-Exupery called Le Pilote de Guerre.

Next in:
Science Fiction & Fantasy
Papago Wolves
A coming of age story about a young werewolf
Maelstrom - New Generation
Wicked gods, cruel games and fallen angels.
Take the Puppet and Run
A new hero is in town...Sort of...