Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Witch of Apple Hill ~ Part 24

As she entered the library she was met by Dorothea and Ernest. Dorothea flew in circles wringing her hands as Ernest stood in the corner arms crossed.
“Well?” they asked together as Rosemary glided down from the rafters.
“He’s a hunter.”
“We’re doomed,” cried Dorothea.
“Stop your fussin’, woman,” snapped Ernest. “I’m sure Elise has a plan.”
They all looked at Elise and she bit her lip. Yes, she had a plan but she wasn’t sure it was the right one. Of course, since she had basically cursed half the businesses in town, there was no going back. She smirked.
“What did you do?” asked Rosemary.
“I cursed the founding families, like always,” said Elise with a shrug. “Even the library this time, no matter what books are checked out, they’ll all have erotic scenes. They’ll bring them back and it’ll look just fine. It’ll drive them mad.”
“You mean it’ll make the hunter mad,” scolded Rosemary. “How could you do that with a hunter in this town now?”
“How could I not?” snapped Elise. “This is my town, hunter or no hunter. I will not be bullied out of my quest.”
“Your quest is in vain,” countered Rosemary. “You’ve been annoying the people of this town since 1935 and they haven’t left. They aren’t going to, not unless you do something completely drastic and out of character.”
“Rosemary, stop,” ordered Elise. “You have always known what I do and why I do it. I’m not going to stop now because some hunter has decided to make Apple Valley his home so he can benefit from my magic.”
“What do you mean?” asked Ernest.
“He has a life stone,” explained Elise, “but it only works near the paranormal. If he goes to some city without magic, he’ll age, rapidly, and most likely die since he’d be over a hundred years old by now.”
“So, he actually needs you,” gasped Rosemary.
“He does.”
“Then it’s unlikely that he’ll hurt any of us,” said Ernest.
“Really?” asked Dorothea, ringing her hands. “Do you think?”
“I think he’s not to be trusted,” said Elise. “He has an oath, just as I do. He says he knows a little magic and will try to preempt my curses. I get the impression he doesn’t want to fight, but he does want me to stop with my vengeance.”
“I think he’s right,” said Rosemary.
“And I think that conversation is over,” said Elise with a raised eyebrow. She loved Rosemary like a family, just as she loved Dorothea and Ernest, but she wasn’t going to let an annoying ghost keep her from her quest. One day the founding families and everyone else in the city would leave and Elise would have her beloved valley back.
Heather King came hurrying into the library and up to the circulation desk, causing the ghosts to scatter. “Elise, the whole town has gone crazy!”
Elise hid her smile as Roark purred in her pocket. “Whatever do you mean?”
“Snakes in City Hall, the grocery store had to shut down because their machines went berserk. Every time rung up for a penny. I thought Ms. Welch was going to have a heart attack when she found out people had hundreds of dollars’ worth of stuff for pennies. Oh, and when I walked by the church, the choir members were all in a fit of giggles. But, not normal giggles, every member had a high pitched voice, like they sucked the air out of a helium balloon.” Heather took a deep breath. “The café was in an uproar too. Nothing was cooked right. The chef blamed the waitress for playing a prank, and the waitresses blamed the chef for sabotaging the food so she wouldn’t get tips. It’s a mess.”
“Sounds like it,” said Elise, trying to hide her smile. “Did you need my help with something out there or did you need something from the library?”
Heather looked around as if to see if anyone else was in the library. The she leaned in close. “I’ve been thinking about what Ms. Welch said about the witch and I was wondering if you had any books about how to protect oneself from a curse.”

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