Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Witch of Apple Hill ~ Part 11


Cage turned toward the door.
“One more question, please,” Elise called out. Cage stopped and turned around, giving her a slight nod. “Why not move back to Unity and open your bed and breakfast there?”
He gave her a wicked smile. “I felt it was high time to make Apple Hill my own.”
Rosemary appeared by Elise’s side as they watched Cage exit the library, this time the door chiming his departure.
“Who was that man?” asked Dorothea. She rubbed her hands together as she glided down from the ceiling.
“An imposter,” stated Ernest coming from the stacks. “He’s trouble, I can feel it in my bones.”
“You don’t have any bones,” said Dorothea.
“Dagnabit woman, I know that,” huffed Ernest. “I’m saying I don’t like the feeling he gives me.”
“Oh,” said Dorothea, “me either.”
Rosemary sighed. “I agree with those two, so you know something is up with Cage, if all three of us are on the same page.”
Roark climbed on top of the desk and growled as if he were adding his vote to the group.
Elise nodded as she touched her lip. “I don’t remember any Martins founding Unity.”
“Could be a married name,” said Rosemary.
“I didn’t get any sense of magic,” said Elise. “Usually, I can tell.”
“When was the last time you left Apple Hill?” asked Rosemary. “You haven’t been around another witch or warlock for as long as I’ve known you.”
“I would know,” countered Elise. She didn’t like the feeling she got from Cage, but she didn’t know him very well either. She had no right to believe he had nefarious intentions because of feeling. “Look, I understand what you all are saying. I wouldn’t exactly trust him to look after the library, but that doesn’t mean he’s evil. I’ll worry about Mr. Martin in my next life, first I need to finish this one and have it end with a bang.”

Chapter 4

City Hall was bustling with excitement. Apple Hill had always been the type of town where people showed up to every town hall meeting whether it was to discuss the type of flowers for the main street hanging baskets or whether to allow a new business to open in it’s limits.
Elise wondered how Cage had managed to open his bed and breakfast without it going before the folks at the town hall meeting? She worked her way through the crowd, conversing before the meeting’s official beginning, about the freak storm the night before, and made her way to Mayor Garver.
“Mayor,” said Elise with a smile, “quite a turnout today.”
“All because of you Elise,” said Mayor Garver returning his own smile.
Elise couldn’t help but blush. It was true they were discussing her departure at the meeting and her retirement party.
“You know, you’ve got plenty of time to tend to our library and then retire,” said Mayor Garver. “You can’t be more than forty, though you look half. Why not take a sabbatical? I think I can speak for the town when I say, I’m sure your niece is splendid, but we don’t want you to leave.”
Elise felt her cheeks grow warmer with embarrassment.  “Hopefully, having Karina here will be as if I never left. I’ve been told we’re two peas in a pod.”
Mayor Garver’s eyes softened. “It just won’t be the same without you.”
Elise felt herself grow a little uneasy. Mayor Garver was being entirely too nice to her. She had revenge to enact on him for crying out loud. If he were ruder, it would be a lot easier. She brushed the thought away, a curse was a curse.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

The McCory Chronicles ~ Katie McCory and The Dagger of Truth

COVER REVEAL!!!! 

I have been anxiously waiting to show everyone this! 
The second book in The McCory Chronicles 

"Katie McCory and Destiny"s Diamond"
will be available soon! 

I LOVE this cover designed by my very talented daughter Brandy Walker of Sister Sparrow Designs! She is awesome!



Friday, November 15, 2019

Witch of Apple Hill ~ Part 10


Elise started to push the cart toward the circulation desk motioning for Rosemary to go away. She was not going to answer that question. Rosemary knew perfectly well that Elise had avoided contacting her ancestors. What would she tell them? How would she explain how she’d failed all this time?
As she approached the desk she was surprised to see Cage take a large step back from it. She rounded behind the desk and saw Roark frantically turning in circles. Something made her spider friend uneasy and that something had to be Cage.
“Are you okay?” she asked.
He gave her an unwary look. “I think your desk just growled at me.”
Elise let out a low chuckle and made herself a mental note to give Roark some extra flies that evening. “Just my old computer warming up. I have a new system coming in, but that will be up to the new librarian to install.”
“That’s right,” said Cage, stepping back up to the desk, “you’re retiring. May I ask why you’re leaving the valley? Seems like such a lovely place.”
“It is,” said Elise with a sigh, “and a part of me will miss it, but my young niece just graduated with her degree in Library Sciences and I’ve always dreamed of living in Paris. So that’s what I’m going to do.”
“Have you ever been?” asked Cage, he took her in with his dark brown eyes, making Elise feel as if she were swimming in chocolate sauce. “To Paris, I mean?”
“Once,” said Elise, “a long time ago.”
“That’s a pretty big change from the quiet valley,” said Cage. “I bet you find your way back here one way or another.”
Elise raised an eyebrow at Cage. There was something in his tone that was teasing, as if the two were sharing an inside joke. She heard Roark growl again.
“Mr. Martin, might I ask where you’re from?” she placed her hand under the desk and tapped Roark’s head gently to quiet him.
“Ironically, Paris,” Cage answered.
“Really?” Elise cocked her head. “I don’t hear an accent.”
“I don’t have one, unless I’m there,” he said with a smile. “It’s like I pick it up the minute I hit French soil, probably because I grew up just over the mountains, in a tiny town called Unity.”
The hairs on the back of Elise’s neck stood tall. Unity had been the home to a rival coven, but she couldn’t remember a witch or warlock with the surname of Martin.
“My family helped to found the town,” he continued. “I know a lot of its history as I’m you know a lot of Apple Hill’s history.”
“Why would I know that?” snapped Elise.
Cage raised his eyebrows. “Other than being the town’s librarian, I happen to know the Pendergraphs were a founding family. They started the library, correct? I’m kind of an amateur historian, which is what took me to Paris. The city is alive with history.”
Elise swallowed down her suspicions. The man was clearly just smitten with history, anything else was just paranoia on her part. He handed her his library card application and she made quick work logging it into the computer and assigning him with a plastic card.
“This gives you an hour on the library computers, but if we’re not busy, I don’t get too strict about that. There is no limit to how many books you check out, but it is twenty-five per day per item if you don’t renew or turn them in on time. We also have DVDs, laptops, and audio books you can check out. Please feel free to wander and let me know if you have any questions.”
“Unfortunately, I don’t have time today to wander, but I will be back,” said Cage. “I just wanted to check out the library and make sure I have my card. Nothing speaks about the town quite like the local library.”
Elise smiled. “You’ve got that right.”
Cage turned toward the door.
“One more question, please,” Elise called out. Cage stopped and turned around, giving her a slight nod. “Why not move back to Unity and open your bed and breakfast there?”
He gave her a wicked smile. “I felt it was high time to make Apple Hill my own.”

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

Witch of Apple Hill ~ Part 9


Elise quickly looked around and saw that Rosemary had made herself disappear. She scratched her head. “I was just … well I thought someone had stolen a DVD, but it was just under another book. Unfortunately, that’s my pet peeve and you caught me at a bad moment. I thought I was alone since I didn’t hear the door chime.”
Elise thought it was very odd the door didn’t chime. It was a spell of her own and wouldn’t malfunction like a store bought chime would. The man gave her a half smile that made Elise’s hackles rise. He may look ordinary, but every fiber of her being was telling her differently.


Chapter 3


Elise shook her suspicions away. He was a simple man and she hadn’t heard the chime above the door ring, because she was too busy complaining to Rosemary about the townspeople. She plastered on a smile and walked to the man with her hand extended.
“I don’t think we’ve met, I’m Elise Pendergraph, librarian.”
The man shook her hand and Elise felt an odd tingle rush through her body. “Nice to meet you, I’m Cage Martin. I just opened the B&B on the edge of town.”
Now Elise knew exactly why her hackles rose. She had heard rumors of someone opening a bed and breakfast nearby and had been livid someone else wanted to profit off her valley by bring strangers into it.
“Oh no,” said Cage, “seems you aren’t a fan.”
Elise realized her smile had faded. “I’m just very protective of the valley and I don’t love the thought of strangers coming to visit.”
Cage chuckled. “I have three rooms, I don’t think we’ll be overrun by tourists.”
Elise pursed her lips together. “It’s really none of my business. My business is the library. Can I help you with something?”
“I’m here for a library card.”
Elise felt a genuine smile caressed her face. “Fantastic, there are forms on the circulation desk, if you want to start filling one of those out, I’ll grab this cart and be with you in a jiffy.”
Elise mentally cringed. She had never used the word jiffy before and she could hear Rosemary’s chuckle on the air.
“Can I help with the books?” he stepped closer to the drop off closet.
“No, thank you,” said Elise, feeling the odd tingle she felt before as he neared her. “That form will take you a minute or two and so I’ll handle this, if you’ll take care of that.”
Cage gave her another half smile. “Okay then.”
Elise returned her attention to the drop off books and felt Rosemary appear by her side.
“He’s handsome,” she said, “and you are smitten.”
“Smitten?” Elise gasped, careful to keep it to a whisper. “I just met the man and I’m leaving remember. Plus, he’s opening that horrid inn on the Badger Hill. The last thing this town needs is visitors.”
“More people for you to curse,” teased Rosemary.
“I only curse the founders,” countered Elise.
“Doesn’t this just verify that you’re never going to have this valley to yourself again?” asked Rosemary. “Come on, Elise, you’ve got to let this notice of revenge and curses go.”
“I can’t,” said Elise as she put the last book on the chart. “If I do I let my whole family down.”
“Have you consulted your ancestors?”
Elise started to push the cart toward the circulation desk motioning for Rosemary to go away. She was not going to answer that question. Rosemary knew perfectly well that Elise had avoided contacting her ancestors. What would she tell them? How would she explain how she’d failed all this time?

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Witch of Apple Hill ~ Part 8


“Let’s go then,” said Ms. Welch. “It’s too hot to stand here yacking about it. I need to be in the water now.”
Mr. King laughed. “Maybe it’s the witch’s curse?”
“No curse, just old age,” snapped Ms. Welch, “let’s get moving!”
“Well look at you,” said Rosemary coming out of her hiding place once Mr. King and Ms. Welch had left the building. “All ready cursing people and in their presences. Maybe you want to be caught?”
Elise shook her head. “I want them gone.”
“Elise, honey, have you stopped to look around at this town? I mean, it’s hardly a nightmare. They take good care of it. They continue to expand the orchard organically. They have wonderful community parties, the school is top notch, and there’s little crime.”
“The crime is they had no right to move here,” snapped Elise. “This is my home and my land. They came in here to tear it up and mine it to the point of desolation. The only reason they found nothing is because I cursed them to be blind to gold or this town would be a city, full of pollution and greed. They took my land and you know they tried to take my …” Elise hung her head.
“Didn’t you admit none of the families that stayed had anything to do with that?” countered Rosemary. “I’m pretty sure Roark took care of those men and they were never seen again. Their families didn’t move here either.”
“What’s your point?” Elise stormed to the storage room and grabbed a cart and then headed to the overnight book drop, her feet stomping all the way.
“My point is,” said Rosemary catching up with her as Elise slammed books onto the cart, “is that maybe it’s time to bless these folks instead of cursing them? Maybe it’s time to let the valley thrive as it is. Even if you get rid of the founding families, not everyone is going to move away. You heard Mr. King say it was the prettiest place on Earth. He’s not moving and I don’t think his granddaughter is either.”
“I just have to be meaner,” said Elise. “Tonight I’ll change all her hair colors in her beauty shop. Folks will go in for blonde and get pink.”
“That’s not my point,” said Rosemary. “In two weeks, you’ll pretend to leave. You’ll do your youth spell and come back looking fresh and ready for a new start. Why not actually make it a new start? What if you embrace the changes and just try to be happy?” 
“They stole from me!”
“Who?” came a voice from the doorway and Elise was surprised that she didn’t recognize it. She stepped out of the small closet where the overnight returns dropped. A man with chocolate brown hair and eyes that matched, stood in the doorway looking at her.
Elise quickly looked around and saw that Rosemary had made herself disappear. She scratched her head. “I was just … well I thought someone had stolen a DVD, but it was just under another book. Unfortunately, that’s my pet peeve and you caught me at a bad moment. I thought I was alone since I didn’t hear the door chime.”
Elise thought it was very odd the door didn’t chime. It was a spell of her own and wouldn’t malfunction like a store bought chime. The man gave her a half smile that made Elise’s hackles rise. He may look ordinary, but every fiber of her being was telling her differently.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Witch of Apple Hill ~ part 7


The door chimed again, this time announcing Mr. King and his cane. Elise couldn’t help but wonder if all the founding families would soon enter her library.
“Why Ms. Welch you’re looking awful spry today,” said Mr. King taking off his hat.
Elise knew that Mr. King was a tad bit older than Ms. Welch, even if Ms. Welch moved slower and acted as if Death was tapping on her door to let him in constantly.
“I’ve never been spry, Mr. King,” snapped Ms. Welch.
“Hey, why don’t you come swimming with me at the community center tomorrow morning,” said Mr. King with a smile on his face. Elise couldn’t help but be jealous of Mr. King’s beautiful brown complexion. Even pushing eighty, the man had flawless skin and his bright smile made him even more handsome.
“I don’t know how to swim,” stated Ms. Welch. “I get wet and then I have to go to the beauty parlor. That chair hurts my bum as it is.”
“Come on,” encouraged Mr. King, “I’ll have my granddaughter do your hair for free and I’ll even bring you a cushion to sit on.”
Ms. Welch waved him off. “Your granddaughter doesn’t have time for me, she’s the best in town. Besides, the witches curse has started again. If I go swimming I’ll probably get pneumonia and die.”
Elise felt herself bristle a little. She might give someone a snotty nose, but she would never put them through pneumonia. Besides, it was too dangerous to give Ms. Welch even a cold, since Elise had her do no deadly harm oath and Ms. Welch was frail anyway.
“Oh pish posh,” said Mr. King. “There’s not witch.”
“What about last night?” asked Ms. Welch.
“Freak storm.”
“You’re family helped found this place. You know the stories.” Ms. Welch squinted her eyes at Mr. King. “Have you not felt her wrath?”
Mr. King nodded, but his smile didn’t fade. “Every so often we go through a spell of bad luck, nothing else. The rest of the time, we live in the prettiest place on earth. If the legend is true, and she wants to drive us out of Apple Hill so she can have it all for herself, I’m afraid she’ll have to do a lot more than itchy palms and a mess on Main Street.”
Elise heard Roark grumble under the table. She smiled as she dropped her pencil holder onto the floor and then bent to pick them up. She looked her spider friend in the eyes. “Oh he doesn’t mind itchy palms? Let’s test that shall we?”
She began to whisper, “In the spirit of poison ivy, nature hear my call. Make Mr. King eat his words with the itchiest palms of all.”
The spider let out a small giggle of delight. “Now what for Ms. Welch?”
Roark squeaked and Elise smiled as she whispered. “Ms. Welch hates to get wet, let’s make her fret. She’ll desire water or she’ll just get hotter. In the pool she’ll live, until the word I give.”
Elise flicked her wrists in the directions of Mr. King and Ms. Welch letting both of her curses fly through the air and land on their prey.
Elise stood and placed the pens back on the desk. “Sorry about that. Need some help or just hear to browse?”
Her smile grew as she saw Mr. King rubbing his palm against his cane. “I’m just here to browse. Ms. Welch, any time you want to swim, just give me a call.”
He started towards the fiction, stopping every few steps to scratch his palms.
“Mr. King,” called Ms. Welch, “on second thought a swim sounds really nice. I mean, it’s so hot. Can we go now?”
Mr. King turned and smiled. “Of course, I’ll drive.”
“I’ll have to stop and get my suit,” said Ms. Welch. “I don’t even know if it still fits, it’s older than Moses.”
“I bet it looks lovely,” said Mr. King, scratching his palm.
“Let’s go then,” said Ms. Welch. “It’s too hot to stand here yacking about it. I need to be in the water now.”
Mr. King laughed. “Maybe it’s the witch’s curse?”
“No curse, just old age,” snapped Ms. Welch, “let’s get moving!”

Thursday, October 31, 2019

 Witch's Brew
       By C.L. Collar


        “Witchy, Witchy, Witchy Woo, what should we put in the brew?”
asked Witchy One of Witchy Two.
            “I do not want to make the brew,” said witchy, witchy, Witchy Two.
“I want to make a nice beef stew.”
            “What has gotten into you?” asked Witchy One of Witchy Two.
“It's Halloween and we must brew.”
            “I have nice eye of newt, so blue. Green toes of toad, I have these too,”
said Witchy One to Witchy Two.
            “No, not one of those will do,”said witchy, witchy, Witchy Two.
“I want to try something brand new.”
            “New does not go in the brew,”said Witchy One to Witchy Two.
“That is one thing we NEVER do.”
            “Ahh. I know what we can do,” said witchy, witchy, Witchy  Two.
“We can and will make old cow brew.”
            “I do believe, that, we can do,” said Witchy One to Witchy Two.
              “It will be old and will be new. Witchy, Witchy, Witchy Woo!”