“No!” I screech at the top of my lungs. I can’t believe what I’m seeing.
And that is my little sister driving a knife through Dominic’s chest, over and over, as he tries to strong-arm her away from him.
“Stop it you fucking bitch!” I bellow at my sister. I drop the bag of groceries and barrel toward them, careening into Ebony. She drops the knife and Dominic slumps against the counter, blood spurting from his mouth.
That’s definitely not a good sign.
“What the fuck is wrong with you?!” I demand of my sister as I shove her against the fridge.
“First, get your hand off my boob. Second, you gave up your powers, took mine away from me, and all for him!” she spits in my face. “You don’t deserve to have some big happy, bullshit fairy tale ending! You’re a disgrace to the entire Brewster family!”
“It was my decision, not yours! I wish I’d never brought you back!”
“Well, you did, and now you’ll have to live with it forever!”
“This is murder! I’m calling the cops you fucking psycho bitch!”
“Go ahead! You can call the cops and have me arrested, or you can try to save your dickhead of a boyfriend down there who’s bleeding like a pathetic pussy!”
With that, Ebony shoves past me, making me momentarily lose my balance. I start to chase after her, but I see that Dominic needs me more. Blood is pooling from his wounds and forming a puddle on the floor, most of which is trickling its way under the counter. I kneel down next to him and grip his head tightly between my hands.
“Oh my God!” I cry as I hastily scan his face for signs of life. “Dominic, talk to me!”
Dominic opens his eyes and offers me a frail smile.
“Hey, sheila,” he says.
“Don’t talk,” I command. “I’ll call the ambulance!”
“It’s too late for that.”
“No! It’s not! You’re gonna be okay, Dominic. You’re gonna be okay.”
Tears start falling from my eyes as I say that over and over again, as though it were a chant that might magically come true.
But I no longer have that ability.
Dominic somehow manages to prop himself up and look at me squarely.
“How did she even get in here?” I ask, briefly forgetting about his condition.
“I have no idea. She just came up behind me and literally stabbed me in the back. She hit my spine, so I could hardly move to fight her off. She snuck in and I had no idea she was even here.”
Damn! Because I’m no longer a witch, the seal I had on the house has worn off. But even if I still had my powers, the seal only prevents other witches from coming inside. Ebony would have come in either way because she no longer has her powers.
I knew she was filled with spite and resentment toward me. But I never thought she’d take it this far.
I shake my head in frustration, unwilling to believe this. Dominic’s body is becoming limp in my arms, and he’s struggling to hold his balance on his knees.
“Dominic, please…there must be something, anything, I can do. Let me call the ambulance, please.”
“No, I want to be in your arms. But there is one thing you can do for me, sheila.”
“What is it? I’ll do anything!”
“Just promise me that you won’t do anything drastic. Promise me that you’ll live the life you’ve always wanted. You told me you didn’t always want to be a witch, and that you’d like to be normal. Now is your chance. Start over at life and live the way you want. Oh, and promise that you won’t try to bring me back like you did Ebony, even if you were to get another witch. The whole zombie thing creeps me out.”
“Promise me, Lydia.”
It’s his dying wish. I can’t say no to him. With tears in my eyes, I whimper, “I promise.”
He leans up to kiss me.
As our lips touch, I can taste the salt from my tears in my mouth, and I’m sure they’re going into his as well. He holds me tightly and we savor this kiss. For it will be our last one.
Suddenly, Dominic pulls back, breaking our connection. I grip his hand tightly and clutch it against my chest as he slumps to the floor.
“I love you, sheila,” he tells me weakly.
“I love you, too,” I reply, my vision rapidly blurring.
Dominic’s body slumps on the floor in full, and his eyes flutter closed. His hand goes limp in mine and his head hits the floor with a thud, his neck no longer able to support it.
I look up and scream in blood-curdling agony, not giving a shit that I’m sitting in Dominic’s blood.
Tears cascade down my face in full ferocity as I desperately look into Dominic’s eyes, searching for any signs of life. But I find none.
I cradle Dominic in my arms, smoothing back his hair. I slap his face a few times to maybe spark some feeling back into them. I begin performing CPR. I tip his head back, clear his airways, and blow into his mouth. His chest moves up and down, but it’s only from the air I’m trying to transfer from my lungs to his. I push on his torso, so hard I fear that I’ve cracked his sternum.
I do this for what seems like hours, though it’s only about five minutes, before I finally give up. There’s nothing more I can do for him. Dominic Taylor is dead. Feeling defeated and dead inside, I collapse on top of his body and let the rest of the tears spill over.
The curse didn’t take Dominic’s life, but Ebony made sure that I still wouldn’t have him. I’m surprised she didn’t try it sooner, considering he knew she was also a witch. I guess she assumed the new moon would take him anyway, or that since he’d never actually seen her cast a spell, she was immune to the curse.
When the tears finally subside, I sit up and wonder what the hell I’m going to do now. My first instinct is to kill Ebony. I gave up my powers, sealed hers, did everything that was required of me, and still I’ve lost Dominic. All because of my bitch of a little sister that I have officially disowned. I’m ashamed to say that I share her flesh and blood.
If I were still a witch, I would be able to perform a resurrection spell on Dominic. I’d risk my magic going dark and consuming me to accomplish that.
But it can’t be done. Since I’m not part of a coven, I don’t know of any other witches. We – or should I say they – don’t exactly make the status of being a witch public. I wouldn’t even know where to begin looking. Besides that, Dominic made me promise not to do that. And considering Ebony’s memories were intact, Dominic’s would be as well. He’d think I betrayed him and broke my word if I got another witch to bring him back.
Amazingly, I’ve often daydreamed of what it would be like to not have to worry about magic and keeping it hidden from humans. Now that I’m one of them, I’d give anything to have my powers back.
But there’s no point in even doing the research. No witch has ever gotten her powers back after they’ve been taken from her, unless they were sealed and the witch who sealed them away gave them back.
Which reminds me. I still have the crystal skull hidden in the secret room above the garage. Ebony’s blood has been absorbed into it, and inside the gem is her magic. My original plan was to keep it in this skull and, if her soul became light and she could truly be saved, I would give it back to her. But I can’t give it back without magic. So there’s no point in even keeping it.
I need to smash it. If it’s destroyed, her magic will be lost forever. But I just can’t bring myself to destroy it. Maybe she’ll change for the better. The skull will forever be in my possession, and though she hates me now, my little sister may come around one day. But her magic will always be sealed with me, even if I can never bring it back.
Besides, I see no point in trying to sugarcoat the inevitable – my sister’s soul will be dark for eternity and she’ll never come around, never able to be saved.
What I want most right now is to find a gun, put it to my temple, and pull the trigger. But I promised Dominic that I wouldn’t do anything drastic. Doing that and killing Ebony would break that promise. So I can’t do it.
But then I realize something. I realize that ending my own life won’t help anything. It won’t salvage my soul either. Ebony will still have won if I do that. And I won’t let her have the satisfaction. To her, living means nothing without magic. She thinks magic defines her. And for a while, I thought the same thing about myself.
But that’s not true. Not for me. I may not have it anymore, and I may not have the love of my life anymore, but I still have hope. I may one day learn to love again, and I won’t have to be bound by some ancient, fucked-up curse. I won’t be restricted on what I can and can’t do in any situation.
I don’t know when or if I’ll love again, but the possibility is there now with no strings attached. It will be hard to find someone to replace Dominic, though. Perhaps he never truly will be replaced. No, I’m certain that he won’t. He’ll always hold a special place in my heart. He was my first real love. I don’t think any of the other guys I’ve been with before genuinely loved me, and I know I didn’t feel as strongly for them as I did Dominic.
I just hope this feeling of pain subsides before it kills me faster than my own hand would.
I decide my first step will be moving out of this house that’s haunted with memories of something I’ll no longer have. I’ll get another apartment, but a better one this time. And not one with a shady landlord.
The light at the end of the tunnel is that the police finally proved that I had nothing to do with the deaths of Abel and Carter. Apparently they found some surveillance footage of someone else committing the crimes, though I strongly suspect that Ebony had something to do with that. But at least it’s not me they’re pinning the crime on. I couldn’t care less about anyone else right now. I have my own problems.
An even bigger light at the end of that long and treacherous tunnel surfaced after I called the ambulance about Dominic. Ebony had been stupid enough to forget one thing – she still has fingerprints, and when I described the person I saw killing Dominic and told the cops her name, they hauled her in and matched her fingerprints to the ones on the knife’s hilt. She’s now behind bars for murder. So at least there will be justice for Dominic’s death. She can’t get out without magic.
A huge shock came to me the other day when Dominic’s lawyer called me. Turns out, he filled out a will before he died. I guess when I told him about the curse, he took action. He left the house, his money, and everything to me. He had no one else to leave it to, anyway. I almost fell out of the chair when I heard that news.
But it’s too painful to live in that big estate, not to mention lonely to live there by myself. So I’ve got it up for sale now, and I’ve got myself a cozy little house nearby, but not close enough to bring up repressed memories.
It needs some fixing up inside, but that will keep me busy at least, in between working. I’m currently waiting tables, and the money isn’t that great, but I’m not hurting for money anyway thanks to Dominic’s generous bequest. The job is mostly to keep my mind occupied when I’m not renovating.
I didn’t have a familiar before, but I did find an adorable cat that I’ve adopted. He keeps me company on my lonely days, which are quite often. I named him Dundee, which may not be appropriate considering I’m trying to get over Dominic, but it just seems to fit him so perfectly considering he looks like a little Bengal tiger, which is very exotic, like Australia.
The job front is also pretty good. Carter’s death did mean that he couldn’t give me a bad reference, and everyone knew the place burned down, so no prospective employers could really call for a reference anyway.
I also heard from Angel, and she’s all right. Thank God it was her night off when the Poppin’ Cherry burned down. She wasn’t sorry to hear about Carter, and she isn’t entirely sure what she’s going to do now (she declined my offer to move in with me, saying she “don’t wanna be anybody’s burden”) but we’re still in touch.
I’ve also decided to give school another try. I’m taking a few classes at the local community college. Maybe I’ll get a degree in psychology. God knows I’ve been through enough shit to give advice about it. The work isn’t easy, but it’ll be worth it. I’ll hopefully have a better chance in the career department than before, which landed me in a strip club.
My life is starting to come back together again, but parts of it are still crumbled at the foundation. It will probably be a long time before I get over the traumatic events of the past two years and few months, but I have realized that I can truly be normal. I don’t need magic. It never defined me, and even if I still had it, it wouldn’t. I’m glad I gave Dominic my word to live the life I’ve always wanted. It’s exactly what I need.
So in a way, he saved my life. Had I not given him my word, and had I not sincerely meant it, I’d probably be burning in hell right now. But instead, I’m getting along fine on my own, without magic, and with no risks of exposure.
I’d like to say that I miss Ebony, but after what she did to Dominic, I don’t. I despise her, and even if she wanted to seek me out and make amends, I would be more likely to throw her in front a speeding bus than listen to her. I hope she burns in hell, again – once for killing herself, and again for killing the man I loved.
I don’t know what the future holds for me, but I didn’t even as a witch. A witch can’t tell the future. And contrary to what some people believe, I don’t think psychics and fortune tellers are real, either. No one can predict the future or what outcome your life may have. But the important thing you must do is be yourself, whoever that may be. Don’t let anything or anyone define you. Just be you.
And remember, true power isn’t what’s found in a spell book or comes from your fingertips. It’s what’s found inside and comes from your heart.