WARNING: This chapter contains strong language and sexual references.
It’s time. The night of the new moon has finally arrived. I have everything I need in the same backpack that I brought to the same graveyard to bring my sister back. Now I’ll be using what’s inside to bring her down.
Funny how things works out.
I survey the area and determine that Ebony hasn’t arrived yet. Surely this is a good sign. Unless she really is performing this ritual somewhere else.
But I can’t imagine where. Hillridge is a big city, and there aren’t many secluded areas around. This would have to be the ideal place for whatever she has in mind.
As if on cue, I hear leaves and twigs crunching under the weight of someone’s shoes. I’m concealed behind a bush, and I see Ebony appear at last. She looks the same as the last time I saw her, but that doesn’t make her any less formidable.
I waste no time. I don’t even want her to have the chance to summon the totem pole. I jump out from behind the bushes, causing her to start.
“What the hell are you doing?!” she demands fiercely.
“I’m putting a stop to this evil,” I declare with vehemence. “Thanks a lot for murdering two guys I hated and having the cops show up because I’m a suspect, by the way. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate that.”
Ebony actually has the impudence to look shocked and innocent. This just makes me even more enraged.
“What are you talking about?” she asks in an irksome tone. “The cops are trying to arrest you?”
“Yes, because you’re framing me for murder now! We both know you killed Abel and Carter. But, according to the cops, I had a falling out with both of them, so I had a motive to kill them. I’m practically under house arrest because they don’t want me leaving town until they clear me.”
“Are you taping this or something? Are you trying to get me to confess?”
I wish I’d have thought of that. But then again, Ebony will undoubtedly say something about her being a witch, so that wouldn’t do me any good anyway. And if she was smart enough to come to this conclusion, she wouldn’t say anything incriminating against herself either.
“No, I’m not,” I retort. “Ebony, this is going to stop. Tonight.”
“What’s going to stop?”
“For one, your innocent act. But I was referring to your reign of terror. I know you killed those guys, but worse than that, you’re planning some fucked up spell to basically wipe out all humans. I found your little bookmark in the grimoire. You’re planning to cast some spell on the night of the blood moon and cast every human into some sort of madness. Then they’ll be subdued enough for you to do God knows what to them.”
“You catch on quick, Lydia. So far my plan’s working like clockwork.”
“Seriously? You haven’t figured out yet that I’m smarter than you, and more powerful? I planted that stupid bookmark there for you to find. I wanted you to think I was going to cast that totally pointless rain spell to make you hurry up to stop me. I knew you’d be freaking out because of tonight what with the curse and all, so you’d do anything you could to save your fuck buddy. It’s pretty fortuitous that the spell had an extra step in place that could only happen tonight. That way, you’d have to leave Lover Boy home alone to come here.”
“What are you saying?”
“Duh. Lydia, just like with the fire, I planned this whole thing. You’re away from Dominic now, and I was waiting for you to show up here to sacrifice your powers for him, because I knew you’d be so weak and feeble-minded to do just that. I didn’t plan on you getting here before me, but that’s just a tiny flaw in my otherwise perfect plan.”
I extend my arm and hurl a flurry of black sparkles in her direction. She goes flying and lands on her perfectly petite ass.
This seems to surprise Ebony, but not enough for her to waiver. She stands right back up and looks arrogantly smug.
“Is that the best you’ve got? I figured that dark magic would have consumed you completely by now.”
“It won’t get me that easily, because my soul isn’t a corrupted piece of shit like yours.”
“Ooo, that stings. I should get the ointment because I just got burned.”
“Quit joking around. I’m not here to play.”
“No, you’re here to try to kill me or something to save your pathetic boyfriend. Who, FYI, is only using you. Hell, I can’t believe he’s still even with you considering he knows all about you.”
“You planned that out, too. You planned everything out! I went through hell for you to bring you back, and you’ve just turned my life upside down this whole time!”
“It didn’t have to be that way. If you weren’t so stubborn about that Aussie, if you had just listened to me, we wouldn’t even be in this mess. But oh, no. You had to listen to the wrong head. I thought only guys made that mistake.”
As I shriek at my sister, lightning cracks across the sky. That’s not a good sign.
“Bravo,” Ebony says in response to the lightning flash. “Looks like your magic is getting darker by the minute. I guess the new moon might cause that, too. Or maybe it’s just the curse.”
“Maybe it’s just you. I can’t believe this, Ebony. We were best friends as kids, I went through hell to bring you back, and now I find out that you’re evil.”
“Evil is a little harsh, but whatever.”
“I just don’t get what you’re trying to do. What are you even trying to accomplish? You can’t just get rid of all humans!”
“No, and I don’t want to. I just think it’s time for us to stop living in hiding. Don’t you get tired of that, Lydia? You can’t even truly be yourself without some sort of consequence. I don’t want to kill all humans. I want to destroy the curse, and I want humans to know that witches exist.”
This is news to me. I agree with her about the curse and removing it, but it doesn’t justify the consequences that all witches would face. History would repeat itself like in the Salem witch trials.
“Oh, and by the way,” she continues, “I never once said I wanted to annihilate all humans. You came up with that fucked up story on your own.”
I try to think back to when Ebony first revealed her true intentions to me. Unfortunately, I think she’s telling the truth. I remember referring to her as Sarafine from Beautiful Creatures, but that’s about it. And her only reaction to that accusation was to assert that she was hotter than the fictional character.
Still, the exposure she’s planning would be at too high a price.
“That’s what you think,” Ebony chastises. “Lydia, times are different now. People will accept us. And if they don’t, we can just change their minds by turning them into frogs or something.”
“You’re crazy. And I won’t let you do this. And I’m not losing Dominic, either. Ebony, I didn’t just come here because you apparently set a trap for me, though I don’t know why.”
“Oh, that? Yeah I did that so you’d be away from Dominic tonight. You’re still my sister and I didn’t think you’d want to see him die.”
“He won’t die. I won’t let the curse take him.”
“The curse may not be your biggest problem. I don’t think he’s any good for you, Lydia. Mark my words, he’ll hurt you, just like he did when he was banging me.”
I’ve had enough. I lunge for my sister, momentarily catching her off-guard, as I yank strands of her dark hair out of her bitchy, disturbed head as I start to drag her toward my backpack, not unlike what she did to me at Dominic’s house so recently.
“Let me go you bitch!” she screams. As if I’d be that stupid. Plus I’m starting to feel a sense of deja vu considering I had the same reaction when she pulled mercilessly at my hair.
“Ebony, I told you that I came here for a reason, and that’s to stop you.”
“What are you gonna do? Kill me? Your magic will be completely corrupted then, and I bet you won’t even recognize yourself. Besides, you don’t have the guts to kill your own sister.”
“Bullshit. I could easily kill you if I wanted to. But I have something better in mind.”
As my sister squirms and attempts to escape from my grasp, I extract the knife from my backpack.
“You just said you weren’t gonna kill me,” she states firmly. I look at her and say, “I’m not going to kill you.”
Then, I take out the bloodstone skull. Upon seeing it and realizing my intentions, Ebony raises her hand and shoots a shard of ice directly into my thigh. I wince at the pain and release my grip on her hair. She stands up and goes into a battle stance.
“You want to strip me of my powers?” she demands hotly. “I’d like to see you try.”
“Careful what you wish for.”
And now the real battle begins.
The fireballs, ice shards, sparkles, and smokes fly, along with incantations and even more cracks of lightning and some thunder rumbles. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – the sibling rivalry between me and Ebony is never pretty, and it’s never miniscule.
The battle is so heated that we both levitate off the ground, which only happens when a witch is practically exhausting herself spiritually and her powers are in full force.
It seems like hours that we stand there, hurtling spells at each other, when I realize that time is running out. I dodge another attack as I grab the knife once more. Then, I start for my sister, dodging more attacks along the way.
By sheer willpower and determination, I cross the distance between us. Ebony may be stronger spiritually, but I’m stronger physically. I grip the back of her head and hold the knife to her throat.
“You wouldn’t dare,” Ebony growls as the metallic object glints in the dim light provided by nothing more than stars.
“Oh, I would,” I reply, “but I won’t. Because killing you would be too easy, plus it would just make my life an even bigger mess.”
“I’d rather die.”
“Then that’s what you won’t get.”
“You’re one letter off.”
I drag Ebony toward the bloodstone, but she fights me the whole way. She even sends more icy daggers my way, but it’s like I’m immune to them. I don’t even notice them, I’m so focused on the task at hand.
Maybe it’s because of the whole good versus evil thing. Maybe Dominic’s right in that regard.
Ebony claws at my arm, bites my hand, and spits incantations at me, but still I don’t halt. I proceed to my destination, until at last I make it.
Now for the fun part. I have to draw blood from her and it has to fall onto the skull. But she manages to break away just as I’m about to pierce her palm.
“Get over here!” I demand, the skull now in my hand. Ebony just starts another spell.
“Enough!” I holler. I jump toward her and manage to pin her down and set the skull beside her. As she struggles against me, she actually does the work for me. In her attempts to break free, her forearm comes into contact with the sharp knife. She screams and writhes in agony as the blood makes its appearance.
But it’s not going onto the skull, and I still have to cast a spell. I glance up at the sky. It must be nearing midnight. At that point, I’ll have failed my quest.
Time to stop dicking around. It’s time to get serious.
I grab Ebony’s arm and twist it, hard enough to dislocate it, if not break it. I hold it over the skull and prepare to begin the recitation.
“No!” she protests. Whatever spell she was casting has fizzled out, but she begins another one. It’s getting old fast. And when I hear the words to this particular incantation, I know I have to hurry – this was one of the other evil spells in the grimoire, one that could harm Dominic worse than death. It could paralyze him, make him go blind, or whatever the castor wishes. And I won’t allow that to happen, just as I won’t allow the curse to take him.
“Shut up you fucking bitch!” I shriek as I send my fist into the back of Ebony’s skull as hard as I can. This halts her words, thus causing the spell to fail. I squeeze her arm and let more blood flow as I begin the chant. Ebony protests again, but I ignore her. As the last word escapes my lips, a strange aura surrounds Ebony. It’s as black as the magic that’s been coming from my fingers lately, and it ravels my sister hungrily before changing into a myriad of other colors.
My own body begins to glow with an odd radiance, and so does the skull. Although its glow is more ominous.
The lights grow brighter until at last, in one brilliant flash, they vanish. The crystal skull is staring at me with its maniacal grin, and I see Ebony trying to cast more spells but failing.
I dive for the skull and snatch it up before she can. It wouldn’t do her any good even if she did have it; only the witch who seals another witch’s powers may unseal them.
And, if all went according to plan, that will be impossible.
I attempt to cast a spell, but nothing happens. I hold out my hands and try to summon an apple, but to no avail. Not even a spark.
It means that the spell worked. I have sacrificed my powers, and in turn, have sealed Ebony’s away. And there’s no way she’ll be able to get them back.
“I’ll never forgive you for this!” she snaps at me. Then she stalks toward me and backhands me hard across the face.
The pain stings, but not as badly as the fact that my sister has officially disowned me. I can tell that by the threats she’s spouting off now. And yet, I don’t care. This girl isn’t my little sister anymore. Not the one I remember. We’re better off apart.
“I hate your guts, Lydia! Everything I did, I did for you! And this is how you repay me?! I hope you choke to death on that Aussie’s dick and burn in hell! Fuck you!”
I ignore her tirade, because I realize that I have to get back to the house. Ebony’s final spell should have fizzled out,but with tonight being the new moon…it’s imperative that I return to Dominic.
I don’t listen to the rest of Ebony’s temper tantrum. I just grab the skull, stash it in my pocket, and take off running, forgetting about my backpack. I hope I’m not too late.