Previous chapters: One | Two | Three | Four | Five
Caleb could have watched Pogue sleep forever, if he weren’t so damn tired himself. After all, he hadn’t slept in a couple of days and nights either.
He kept himself entertained though, tracing the contours of the sleeping boy’s full lips, and counting the long, thick eyelashes one by one as they rested on his cheeks. Pogue was an unconventional looking boy, a captivating dichotomy of sorts. His features that were hard and frigid by day now lay on the pillow soft and blissfully relaxed. The greasy hair that screamed bad biker boy in public, here in the privacy of this bedroom was just as soft and delicate to touch as on a five-year old. No wonder Pogue was such a big hit with the ladies. Every girl he’d ever dated had wanted to have his babies.
His trance was broken when Tyler walked into the room and put a hand on Caleb’s shoulder. “Shift’s up, Cale. Get some rest.”
Caleb sighed, almost regretfully, but kept his eyes trained at Pogue who was still sound asleep. Had been now for a little over three hours. Caleb sank back into his chair and looked up at Tyler with a soft smile on his face. “It worked.”
“Go you, baby boy,” Cale stood up and with a quick squeeze of Tyler’s shoulder, he started to leave. “But we’re watching him anyway.”
“I know.” Tyler made himself comfortable in the seat vacated by Caleb.
“I know. Wake you up if anything happens.”
Caleb left then. And now that he was heading into the neighboring bedroom, the thought of getting some sleep of his own didn’t seem so bad at all.
Pogue came back to painfully stark consciousness with a loud gasp – echoing in the enormous, high-ceilinged, empty bedroom. Wasn’t someone supposed to be watching him?
He squinted his eyes open and found himself lying face down on the bed, alone in the daunting silence. One side of his face was squished into the pillow and his skin crawled in the cold dank air of the ancient Simms manor. Yeah, he recognized it now, because suddenly for reasons unexplained, he was dead sober. That’s when he heard the other noise in the background, and it was coming from behind his back. Or more precisely… on top of him.
Pogue immediately tried to slither off the flat surface but as before, only managed to exhale a soundless grunt and his body didn’t move an inch.
“Miss me?” The thing hissed, the sound just as grating and demeaning as before.
Oh, so they were doing words again. Pogue astonished himself with still managing a small streak of sarcasm in the midst of his growing terror and panic.
“Nothing’s changed,” Pogue said. At least he thought he said it. At least he thought the thing understood that he meant to say it. “I still don’t want this.”
The three-fingered stump of a hand slipped under his t-shirt and quickly circuited down to the curve of his butt. Pogue started to tremble.
“Liar.” This time the hiss literally traveled through him, ran marathon courses up and down his entire nervous system.
“Stop, please…” He pleaded, even as the demonic hand started to rip off his clothes. In a matter of seconds he was naked, or maybe he’d been unclothed all this time? He couldn’t tell.
His entire body was once again rendered immobile by the presence pushing him down into the bed. The difference this time was – Pogue knew it was fruitless to fight the paralysis, so he didn’t. Not too much anyway.
“I missed you so much, so much…”
Something wet and slimy licked a cold line down the back of his neck to the middle of his spine, while the hand below continued to fondle his ass cheeks almost lovingly. Pogue whimpered and squirmed, not realizing when the other hand managed to push his legs apart and burrow in between them. He jumped, as much as he could, when the hand grabbed his balls possessively. This was new – the thing had never shown much interest in anything but his ass before.
“I’ll do anything, pl-please… just stop.”
The thing laughed, actually laughed at Pogue, then lowered its coarse tongue into his exposed ear, sliming it inside and out. “I don’t want you to do anything. Just lie there and be mine, be mine. Be mine!”
The continuous litany lasted awhile. The thing ignored Pogue’s protesting sounds and lowered its mouth down to his butt. It hesitated for but a second, causing a drop of demon drool to land at the boy’s exposed opening. It disgusted Pogue almost as much as it somehow, strangely, turned him on.
The thing’s hands pulled his cheeks apart, pinching and caressing almost playfully. And before he knew it, the mouth descended and swallowed his orifice whole, the tongue that seemed forked in two penetrating him swiftly and forcefully. The gory lips sucked at the outer rim of muscles with passion, making ugly slurping sounds like a giant dog or a wolf. The two forked ends of the tongue moved almost independently of each other inside him as they jabbed in and back out and back in again. It almost felt like two tongues fucking him at once and no matter what he said or did, they couldn’t be stopped.
Pogue gasped and started to struggle again, not that it helped. Expectedly enough, he felt his cock lengthening beneath him, his balls pulling upwards tight to indicate an impending erection. His breaths became shallower and his toes curled, overwhelmed by the sensations inside his ass and even outside that were incredibly, and terrifyingly… erotic.
And then it got worse – the tongue twisted its way down to his prostate gland. Pogue was sure he screamed, he screamed like all hell broke loose because damn it how could pleasure be so fucking painful and how could pain be so fucking hot?
His cock was hard as nails by now and it hurt not to be able to grind into the bed for any sort of friction. A week ago, Pogue had no idea what the freaking g-spot for men even meant. And yet here he was, barely putting up a fight as his sweet spot was punished over and over again, driving him to the very edge of orgasmic insanity. Not that fighting would have helped even if he tried.
Is it still rape if the victim feels pleasured as a result of the act, nonconsensual as it may have been to begin with? Sure it may be something his body craved, hormonal and fucking teenaged as it was. But this was not what his mind or his heart wanted.
To his own ears, his whimpering was loud and pathetic, so how come no one else in the mansion heard him? If this were really a dream, surely he was traumatized enough to be showing outward signs of distress.
Damn it Caleb! Where are you?
Pogue sobbed at the sudden thought of his best friend. “Caleb…”
The forked appendage rimming his hole suddenly vanished and the demon froze, almost literally. A coldness seeped through every inch of naked skin in contact with the entity, and Pogue shivered, this time with real fear for his very life.
“Caleb’s not here. I am. This is what you want. Admit it…”
Seconds ticked away in deathly silence. Pogue warred with himself, but the smartass in him couldn’t be shut up. “I don’t want it to be you.”
Immediately, his shoulders were grabbed and Pogue was flipped over onto his back. For the first time since the lightning flash that very first night, Pogue got a really good look at his assailant. Dude was fucking fugly. Strangely though, Pogue wasn’t as petrified as he thought he would be. Instead, he felt a smirk coming on. For the first time since all of this started, he felt like he’d finally managed to get a (slightly) upper hand.
The entity was a mix and match of the several hundred different demon pictures they’d grown up looking at in the old Covenant books. The worst of everything… in every single way. And now in its absolute fury, it looked even more grotesque and repulsive. The sounds it made were back to more growling and hissing than actual words.
“It’s that girl you want… you want that fucking Salem whore.”
Who? Pogue took a few seconds to recall. Jasmine?
“You’re mine, little boy. Mine. Only mine!!”
Pogue watched, both enraptured and horrified, as the entity’s eyes flashed a fiery red, its nostrils flared and the razor sharp teeth ground together angrily. One scaly hand reached down and grabbed his dick in a crushing grip so painful, Pogue screamed and nearly whited out.
“You don’t get to use this, little boy. Not with that whore, not with anyone!”
The words, the snakelike hissing, the increasing pressure slowly squeezing the very life out of Pogue through his penis, soon got to be too much. The seventeen year old started to hyperventilate until finally with one last bloodcurdling scream (that probably stayed just in his head), Pogue passed out.
Someone seemed to be calling him back from the dead, but Pogue didn’t seem too inclined to oblige.
“Wake up, man, it’s me, Caleb. Wake up…”
Cold water was splashed on his face and Pogue started, reluctantly coming back to consciousness. The voice was familiar, the name… Caleb… yeah, he’d heard that one before.
“Wake up, baby, come back to me, come on…”
Strong hands slipped under him and pulled him away from the bed. Pogue realized he was back in his unripped clothes again, even though he felt violated through and through. Pogue wanted to cry. He hadn’t cried since he was ten years old, but now he wanted to cry his heart out. Let rivers, no, oceans of pent-up tears flow and fill up this bottomless pit in his stomach. Wash these feelings of misery and utter helplessness away.
“Cale…” He sobbed.
“It’s me, buddy, open your eyes. Come on.”
Pogue opened his eyes and the first thing he saw was Caleb’s damn near panicked face. And he wanted to cry again. Caleb immediately pulled him into himself, wrapped his arms around Pogue’s torso and rested his own chin on top of Pogue’s head. Pogue’s instinctive reaction was to reject the embrace, get the hell away from anything that dared graze his skin. But he reminded himself that this was Caleb.
Caleb – his best friend Caleb.
“H-how did you know?”
“Tyler was watching you. He tried to wake you when you started to thrash about but he couldn’t so, he woke me instead. We got here as fast as we could.”
Pogue clung shivering to Caleb’s chest like a child, not understanding the guilt he could hear in Caleb’s voice. It wasn’t his fault, how could it be? If anyone ought to be blamed, it would have to be... why, Pogue himself.
He must have done something terrible to deserve such a terrible fate.
“Shut up. It’s not your fault, tough guy.”
Pogue frowned. “Did I say that loud?”
“Oh God, he’s still drunk.”
“And he’s sweating buckets.”
I am? Oh yeah.
Fact Pogue’s t-shirt was drenched both front and back and now he was drenching Caleb in his sweat too. Pogue smiled to himself, the thought was vaguely cute in a dirty way, and it made him forget his troubles for a tiny split-second.
“How did this happen?”
Like it’d happened the last two times, maybe? But Pogue soon realized the question wasn’t directed at him.
Tyler sounded just as panicked, and just as guilty. “I don’t know! I-I… you tried blowing up that cat right, this… this isn’t supposed to happen.”
Caleb’s voice was now angrier, colder. “You said we’d be safe here, Simms. You said this was the safest place on earth.”
Caleb’s arms surrounding Pogue seemed to tighten with every word. Pogue whimpered, completely unintentional of course. He burrowed in deeper, trying to hide himself in the safety of his best friend’s embrace, at which Caleb seemed to calm down somewhat. He started to rock gently, back and forth, trying to comfort the younger boy in his own silent, melodramatic way.
“How did it get in?”
“I… I don’t…”
“Go find out. NOW!”
Pogue whimpered again, not liking that Tyler was getting yelled at because of him. He wanted to apologize to Tyler so bad, but he couldn’t find the damn words.
“Caleb… uh… can you step out for a second?”
There was a strange hesitation in Tyler’s voice that, along with the suggestion that Caleb leave him alone here in this cursed room, made Pogue’s spine stiffen. Caleb started to rub his back in strong strokes.
“Whatever it is, you can say it here, Tyler.”
Pogue squinted his eyes open and turned his head slightly to look at the youngest witch. Tyler had both hands on his hips, and he was biting his lip nervously. “Maybe… Cale, we should seriously start considering the possibility that maybe it was really just a nightmare.”
Outraged, Pogue struggled to get out of Caleb’s hold, even though his limbs were still uncoordinated and his vision blurry. Course Caleb didn’t let him get too far.
“What are you sayin’ Simms? That I’m doing this to myself?”
“That’s not what he’s saying, baby, just…”
Pogue struggled. “Let me go.”
Caleb didn’t immediately let go, fact he tried to keep Pogue from sliding off the bed the wrong way down and maybe hitting his head. “Pogue, please calm down, he didn’t mean…”
“Let me go, damn you, it hurts!!”
And that shocked Caleb enough to immediately let go. And of course Pogue did stumble off the bed ungracefully.
“Pogue, look around you man.” Tyler tried, even as he took a step back from where Pogue landed on the creaking carpeted floor. “This is the old Simms manor, you remember the story I told you right? No supernatural evil is allowed to fucking exist in this place!”
“So what?” Pogue’s voice was rushed and breathless as he tried to get back on his feet. He noticed how Caleb hovered behind him, not touching but ready to catch him if he fell again.
“So, maybe it’s not supernatural. Maybe it’s…”
Pogue gave up trying to get himself up, and sat back on the floor, leaning against Caleb’s knee who took a seat on the bed behind him. He honestly couldn’t care less who or what he was leaning against right then.
“You think I’m crazy.”
“No, Pogue, that’s not…”
“Why not? Fine, maybe I am losing my mind, my sanity… but what if someone cursed me to go crazy, Tyler? Think out of the fucking box why don’t you?”
Tyler shook his head. “No curse, no curse with a malicious intent can ever...”
“FUCK YOU SIMMS!! Fuck you and your stupid Simms fucking manor!!”
Tyler suddenly lost it. In a desperate and most likely unintended explosion of power, he swiped a family heirloom vase off its stand ten yards away. The sound of the crash reverberated in all corners of the manor. “Why is everyone yelling at ME? I’m trying the best I can alright!”
“Tyler,” it was a soft whisper coming from behind him. It was Caleb, trying to admonish Tyler gently and get him to back off. Of course, Pogue mused cynically, go after the sane one. No point wasting any energy on the fucking nutcase.
Pogue felt his face heat up, with rage, with humiliation, and pain… and desperation. Hiding in his hands didn’t quite help, nor did bringing his knees up into his chest and lowering his head until he was curled up into a tight ball. But he did it anyway. And no one stopped him.
A loud rumbling of the stairs was followed by Reid bursting through the bedroom door, and everyone except Pogue looked up towards him, relieved to have an excuse to overlook the giant elephant in the room.
Caleb sat on the empty, crumpled, magically refurbished bed, leaning against the headboard, one knee propped up with his hands entwined around it. He felt like he’d been holding that pose, sitting deathly still like a fucking statue for days but actually it’d only been a little over sixty minutes. He sat and watched his best friend crouch on the floor against the foot of the bed, shaking himself apart. All his attempts to talk to Pogue or draw him out of his shell had failed miserably. And he’d definitely not tried touching him again after his latest outburst.
It hurts, Pogue had said. Caleb swallowed hard, his eyes watering at the pathetic sight of the boy that in the last few days had come to mean the whole damn world to him.
How could Pogue possibly be hurting himself? Until two weeks ago, Pogue Parry was sorted (enough), despite his issues with his Dad. He still was the most stable self-confident guy Caleb had ever met. Of all the Sons of Ipswich, Pogue was the one who’d managed to come to terms with the fact that they were different long before the rest. He could do normal just as easily as he could do witch, the transition from one to the other always elegantly seamless and hassle-free. Hell, Reid and Tyler were still struggling with their dual identities, sometimes even Caleb. But not Pogue. Never Pogue. Pogue liked himself, damn it. Often, more than was necessary. Why would he want to hurt himself?
Caleb sighed, and it echoed in the enormous bedroom. Pogue still didn’t react, just continued to keep his face buried in between his hands and knees.
It wasn’t like he’d ever struggled with his sexuality either. Caleb yeah, sure, back when he was fourteen and now ever since… well. Point being, Pogue never was the kind to struggle with any of the issues kids their age usually faced. At least Caleb hoped he knew his best friend well enough to be sure of that.
I won’t let it get you, baby. I promise. You trust me, don’t you?
Those had been his words. He had forced Pogue to go to sleep when the scared, witless boy hadn’t wanted to. Caleb had promised to keep his safe, and he’d failed. The dark witch winced his eyes shut, knocking his head back painfully against the board. The ache felt good but was too dull, so he did it again, and again. And again.
“It’s not your fault,” Pogue uttered his first words in a long hour, his voice hoarse and wet with unshed tears.
Caleb blinked in near shock and straightened up. He didn’t move any closer though, unless he freaked Pogue out. “It’s not your fault either.”
Pogue scoffed, ever so softly, raising his head just a bit. “Sure about that?”
Caleb paused for a second. Just a second. “Positive.”
Pogue let out a long, shuddering sigh. Caleb moved quietly, and yet loud enough for Pogue to know he was being approached. He made his way to Pogue’s side, and sat down next to him on the floor a good two feet away. He didn’t know if Pogue would like being touched yet, didn’t matter that Caleb himself was dying to reach and comfort his friend. Why did Pogue say it hurt anyway? That one didn’t quite make sense (since it was just a nightmare, right?) Unless Caleb had used way too much force holding the boy? He wasn’t sure how that had happened, and Caleb had to know.
“Does… does it still hurt?”
Pogue nodded subtly, and pulled his knees into his chest tighter.
Caleb fought the urge to pull Pogue back into his arms. “Pogue, please tell me how I can help.”
At last Pogue turned to look at him. His face was blank and beaded with drops of sweat. His lips were red and bitten through, and his pupils were dark and dismal, as opposed to his usual champagne brown eyes that sparkled and often took Caleb’s breath away. The older boy couldn’t stop himself anymore. He held his arms out, giving Pogue the option to reject him if that was what he needed to do. And he waited.
Pogue stared numbly into Caleb’s face for a while before dropping his eyes to the outstretched, inviting arms. Then slowly, without ceremony, slid closer and burrowed into his best friend’s arms, resting his head on Caleb’s broad chest and letting Caleb bear his entire dead weight. Caleb could have danced in happy relief. He put a hand on the back of Pogue’s head and softly caressed his hair, closing his other arm around the quivering torso protectively.
“I’m so sorry, baby… this wasn’t supposed to happen.”
Pogue didn’t reply. Caleb loosened his grip on a sudden thought.
“Am I hurting you? Where.. where does it hurt?”
Pogue froze, and no, that was definitely not a comforting sign. Caleb ruffled his hair a little more intensely and asked again, whispering into the closest ear and rubbing his lips against the ice cold lobe. “What is it, Pogue? You can tell me…”
Pogue shyly looked up into his eyes before lowering his gaze back down to the middle of his legs, and it took awhile for Caleb to realize what he was trying to say. The thighs squeezed together, bent at the middle, the spasming quivering of his entire frame… Caleb frowned and looked down at Pogue’s denim-clad crotch, no longer sure how to handle the situation.
“What… what did it do?”
“It’s okay, you don’t have to talk about it.”
“You don’t want to know.” Pogue shuddered as he said the words.
“I want to know only if talking about it helps.”
Silence followed, and Caleb was on the verge of giving up. Minutes later, Pogue started talking. And another few minutes later, Caleb wished he’d never asked.
The blood froze in his veins as Pogue described his latest attack in pretty graphic details. Caleb wondered if Pogue was trying to draw an extreme reaction from the older boy, or if he really wasn’t aware of how stark and unsettling his words were. For what was supposed to be just a nightmare, allegedly, Pogue sure remembered and practically relived every single gory, horrifying moment vividly. Caleb’s arms wound tighter around his friend subconsciously.
“And then, he… he squeezed it so hard. Said I don’t get to use it on Jasmine or anyone… and he kept squeezing until I guess, I passed out, or woke up. Not sure. There’s very little I’m sure of anymore.”
Caleb practically shook in his incredible rage. “Fucking sonofabitch. If I ever get my hands on the bastard I’m gonna rip its fucking lungs out.”
“If it has any,” Pogue drawled. The smartass seemed to be back, somewhat. Caleb guessed the talking may have helped after all.
He cleared his throat. “Pogue, I’m… I’m not leaving you this time. I’ll watch you all night and all day if I have to.”
Pogue sighed and looked up into the older boy’s face, smiling but it was a sad and heartbreaking expression. “I do sleep better with you around, don’t I?”
Hell yeah. That’d been proven twice now. Caleb felt his heart give a little jump, but he reminded himself now was so not the time. He cleared his throat. “So, you wanna try resting a little? You look so beat.”
Pogue’s smile vanished. “I don’t know… not in this bed, Cale. Please…”
“Shhh, okay, okay baby.” Caleb rocked him again, kissing the top of his head lovingly. “We’ll go downstairs, send Reid and Tyler back up here.”
“No, I’m fine right here. Let them sleep. They both look like shit too, thanks to me.”
“Shhh. Don’t worry about it, okay? We’ll stay right here then, this is… perfectly… comfy.”
A soft laugh escaped, and Caleb wondered who was more surprised (and delighted) by the tiny glimmer of normalcy returning to Pogue’s face. Yeah, the carpeted floor wasn’t exactly the best place to sleep but if Pogue wanted to be here, then so did Caleb.
Pogue burrowed back into Caleb’s chest, and Caleb pulled him closer until the dark blond was practically in Caleb’s lap. Any other day, in any other situation, Parry would've never allowed for this much physical proximity, ever. Caleb continued to stroke his boy’s hair and back until the breaths evened out, and Pogue finally dropped back to sleep, clearly exhausted both physically and emotionally from his ordeal.
Caleb resolved to stay on watch all night this time. He’d failed to keep his promise once. He didn’t want to let Pogue down again.
Downstairs, Tyler paced back and forth in the hall that once used to be an elegant ballroom. A decrepit old baby grand piano still stood at the north west corner and that’s what Reid perched on, swinging his legs back and forth, lost in his own morbid thoughts. He’d just been told what had transpired upstairs while Reid had crashed out on a couch in the foyer. He was supposed to be standing guard at the door of course, but some time after the first three hours, he couldn’t keep his eyes open.
“I let something in, didn’t I?”
“No, you didn’t!” Tyler stopped pacing and looked at Reid exasperatedly.
“Reid, I was right there in the bedroom with Pogue, wide awake. I was watching him. And if something had entered the room, I would have definitely felt it.”
Reid stood up. “So all you saw was… Pogue, suddenly starting to REM and then…?”
Tyler shrugged, “And then all hell broke loose man. He was thrashing like a rehab inmate in restraints. And no matter what I did, I couldn’t wake him up.”
“Was he mumbling anything? Did you hear…?”
“No. Nothing. Just… whimpers, struggling to get away from something,” Tyler’s face suddenly crumpled. “God, Reid, I don’t know how to help him.”
Reid sighed and walked over to Tyler, putting an arm around the youngest boy’s shoulders. “Now you are blaming yourself.”
Tyler ran a hand through his hair. “I lost it man, I shouldn’t have yelled like that. Now he’s never going to trust me again.”
“Sure he will. Tough guy has a really short memory, he never holds grudges you know that.”
Reid meant every word, but Tyler was inconsolable at the time. He shrugged off the arm on his shoulder and walked away, digging his hands in his pockets.
“The strange thing is – he was completely fine on Caleb’s watch. Slept like a baby. But barely ten minutes after Caleb left and I took over, the nightmare came on. Almost as if, he knew when Caleb left the room and… and…”
Reid shook his head. “Don’t start that again, please Simms.”
“You don’t even know what I was going to say…”
“Thousand bucks says you were about to imply that Pogue’s subconscious is secretly in love with Caleb and reacting badly to his absence.”
Tyler shut up very quickly. Reid rolled his eyes and sighed.
“Look, I agree those two are falling hard for each other. And I also know Pogue can be mighty suppressed when he wants to. But not so much that he’d hurt himself, and in the very worst way possible? No. This has got to be something supernatural haunting him, man. Or maybe he was cursed to lose his mind because there’s no way he’s doing this to himself, man. No way.”
That was what Tyler had a problem with, and he started pacing again. “But how is that possible, man? I just told you – nothing supernatural with a malicious intent can possibly survive here in this place! This is fact! I tested it over and over and over again!”
Reid frowned as a new thought occurred to him. “Unless…”
Tyler stopped pacing. “What is it?”
Reid went back to lean against the piano, his eyes narrowed as he continued to chase a train of thought around in his head, keeping Tyler in excruciating suspense.
“Reid? Damn it, tell me!”
Reid smirked at Tyler. “I don’t know, baby boy. Don’t think I should be hurting your delicate sensibilities.”
“Cut the bullshit and just say it.”
“Okay. You know how S&M works right?”
Tyler crinkled his nose. “What’s that got to do with this?”
Reid took a deep breath and began; his voice steady with an undercurrent of mischief that was unmistakable.
“Pain is pleasure. Pleasure is pain. Consent is dubious at best, fact that’s what most of the role play is centered around. That’s how it works, baby boy. And it’s very easy to get carried away, but the intent is never to cause any permanent harm. Fact, a lot of these couples are the strongest relationships ever – because their love and trust for each other is greater than usual.”
Tyler’s eyes widened again one second, and narrowed in the next. “Reid? Are you saying what I think you’re saying?”
Reid shrugged. “This house doesn’t stop all magic, it only blocks out evil magic, right?”
Tyler nodded softly. “So, is this a supernatural stalker that does not have a malicious intent? Or is it a supernatural stalker that… this house doesn’t think has a malicious intent?”
In the pin-drop silence that followed, they could hear each other breathe despite the distance. Tyler waited and waited, but Reid did not respond.
Somewhere in Salem, at about the same time that Pogue was fighting for his sanity, a girl was being carried out on a stretcher from the Salem Academy dorm for girls into a waiting ambulance. She had a broken arm and a badly sprained ankle with myriad cuts and bruises sustained from her fall down a flight of stairs.
The other girls stood around her, some in shock, others concerned, and a couple of girls stood alone, closest to the stretcher but calm and eerily composed. Just after loading the injured girl into the van, the duo approached and barricaded her away from the gathering crowd of curious spectators. The girl lifted her head up to whisper to them, quite furiously at that.
“I’m telling you, Anya. It wasn’t an accident. I’m not that big a klutz, okay?”
The oldest witch of Salem frowned, and put a hand on the girl’s forehead to gently push her down so she wouldn’t strain herself. “What are you saying, Jas?”
Jasmine shook her head. “Someone was there with me in the bathroom. That someone followed when I got out and that someone pushed me down the stairs!”
The third girl, whose name was Fiona, seemed like the cynical one. “Are you sure you didn’t have one too many shots again to help you sleep?”
The youngest witch of Salem hissed at that, desperately. “You have to believe me, damn it! It was a supernatural entity and it was either invisible or really stealthy, but I could hear its heavy breathing. I could sense its presence the moment I came out of the shower. Didn’t you guys sense it?”
Fiona and Anyanca looked at each other. Fiona shrugged, “Maybe it was a ghost.”
“Don’t be stupid Fiona, I can tell it when it’s a ghost. And this one was not.”
Anyanca sighed but was a little more supportive. “There are lots of entities that don’t always leave footprints of power behind, especially if they’re being conjured by someone who’s not physically present right there.”
Anyanca sighed. “Like… Zombies? But they’re hardly ever stealthy. Maybe sleepwalkers? Astral projections? And it doesn’t have to be a witch doing it either. Some gifted humans are known to be able to project too.”
Jasmine felt relieved that the oldest witch of their pack seemed to believe her. Anyanca was also the smartest and most knowledgeable witch in their generation hands down, even if she didn’t look the part and in fact tried her best not to.
Fiona smirked. “So Jasmine’s got a stalker.”
“Shut up, Fiona. It’s not funny.”
“Didn’t say it was, I’m just wondering who it could be. Do you think maybe it’s that Ipswich boy you outed? Parry?”
Jasmine sighed. “I know it didn’t go well with Pogue, but he’s a good guy. No, he wouldn’t be capable of such… malice.”
They couldn’t talk any further because the paramedics were now ready to take her away. Anyanca and Fiona headed towards their own car to follow the ambulance to the hospital. A subtle wave of incoming telepathic connection buzzed at Anyanca’s mind and smiling, she let Jasmine in.
You should take it easy, kid. Don’t block the morphine out, or the paramedics will get suspicious.
Jasmine ignored the advice completely.
This thing hates me, Anya. I just know it. I know it like I know night from day. This thing wanted me dead.