Chloe McGarry visits the blog

Welcome Chloe,

Thank you for inviting me, and it’s a pleasure to be here. 

Firstly let's do the ordinary interview then we might get to the news about new stories.

Give up three of your deepest, darkest secrets.
Oh no, I hoped we'd have a less frightening opening to the questions.
Three secrets,
       I don’t want to get married ever to anyone
       I don’t want to stop seeing either Oliver or Tristan, so I want them both (smiles)
       I hate my name

If you could have one super power in your existence, what would it be?

You’re kidding?
You’re not.
Well how could I possibly want more than I have but I came to answer the questions so I think given the things I get up to invisibility might be the way to go.

If money were not an object, where would you most like to live?
I live where I want to be. As long as I am on the Dearing estate I’m happy.

Just answer these questions as quickly as possible.

Chocolate or vanilla?-----chocolate

Dog or cat?----Both and horse too, after my adventures I can't leave out horse

The film or the book?----- the movie, the TV series and the book

What’s your favorite food? Cake (laughs)

What kind of car would you have if money was no object?
You know I love my old Jeep Wrangler but I’d have a new one, hard top because it’s colder in the UK than in California.

Jeans or dress? jeans

Heels or flats? boots always

Beach or Ski resort?
Beach (grins)

Flowers or chocolate?

You say in the first book that your favorite color is blue has that changed at all over the last three years.

Yes I’ve started to really like purple too now.
Partly because of a dress I bought and went to dinner in with Tristan, and partly because of how cool Dale looks in purple and the boots she's given me that are purple.

Is there anything you would have changed about the way the books are written? Would the writer have listened to you?

We've made a lot of changes to the books in the last six months. For one thing they were sent away and completely reedited. That doesn't mean the story changed. The first book has to be told the way it is. You have to know how Tristan, Oliver and I met. You have to know about Max and what he does to Oliver because that's the start of the immortals story. So the first three volumes of the story deals with each part of our first months together. Then of course there's the story of finding Oliver, which is another book. 

Then there's the way I grow up. I'm pretty sheltered whn I first rock up in the UK. I change. I also start to fit in. You can't help picking up some of the words they use, but I still have my accent. I still call a phone a cell, I still say mom, although Clare calls her mom, mum, I haven't fallen into that yet. It's too weird huh? 

The writer listens all the time. She changed the cover for me too for the story six and then seven.

You get the chance to have the author change your name what will it be?—
 I think I’d like something that is less popular. It feels like every other girl is called Chloe now. Maybe I’d like an old name like Maud, or Emily, or a place name.

What do you think of the author?
I think she’s brave.  Our whole story is really a love story, and that’s why she’s brave because she’s put out there the notion that you can love two people, and I do.

 How do you feel about the book you're in?
It’s a little weird seeing your life out there in front of the world? I feel in awe of the whole adventure. I mean who would have thought that all this would happen when I moved here from LA. I've come to see it as my destiny unfolding. I was meant to meet Oliver and Tristan and we're meant to be together.

How do you see your future? Without giving anything away. 
 It’ll be a bit of a surprise, although I understand Oliver was over here telling secrets a few days. Oh yeah and then Tristan. We have a few more adventures to tell people about, but they're not about the spell. Bartholomew took care of that. They're about the life we have together, well at least some of it.

 Let's say they make a movie about this book. Who do you want to play you, and why?
I hope they don’t make a movie. The story is much too personal for it to be a movie. It’s my life and it might draw attention to us, although all the real places we live have been disguised by the writer. I would actively protest against a movie being made.

What do you love best about yourself? What do you like least?
I like my compassion, and my just do it attitude. I don’t like the way I can lie without missing a beat, but you know I’ve had to because otherwise people I love might have been hurt.

How did you meet the writer?
I met her on the plane over from LA, and then weirdly saw her again in a coffee shop in town after a few things had happened to me. We just got talking because she loves old places, and in the end I started to tell her my story, and she began to record it.

Can you share one of your favorite parts of the books?
There are so many things that have happened to me that’s hard.
I’ll choose two if you don’t mind.
  1. I think it’s when I came back from California, where I disappeared to when Tristan had left town. Here’s a little part of our meeting again when I came home to the Dearing estate. It’s from The Task.

Tristan had tried hard. He kept his distance all the time Oliver was with us, but now he stood up as I came into the kitchen. He made a little sound like a whispered ‘uh’, and clasped me to him. I held him close as he pressed his face against my neck and then turned it into a kiss. It was totally gorgeous and made me come out in goose pimples. I started to smile. I moved to hold his face and kiss his lips. “Tristan,” I said his name, and he looked at me.
“Chloe, do I have to wait until tomorrow to spend some time with you, to talk about what a complete idiot I was. I know it’s late but could you find an hour maybe for me?” He seemed about to kiss me and then stopped to wait for my answer.
“Let’s take my netbook upstairs, we can talk in my room. I think we need that privacy, mom will be along soon to make herself coffee.”
He nodded. I closed the lid of my netbook, and holding it in one hand took hold of Tristan’s hand with the other.
In my room, I placed the computer on my desk, and turned to Tristan. I was thinking I really needed to hold him close. I moved closer thinking how blue his eyes were, how much I had missed him, and he started to kiss me. It felt as if we'd never been apart. As I kissed him I thought how much I loved him and wanted him, how much I cared about him. He suddenly moved away from me and walked to the window, he looked out into the darkness, and then without turning around he started to speak.
“Chloe, I wish I hadn't gone away. I wish I'd come back sooner. I wish I'd done what Oliver asked me, and called you. I just hope you forgive me, and I so hope there is a chance that you might understand what happened. I know it was ridiculous and I actually don’t know now what I was thinking of.”
I wanted to comfort him despite anything that had happened, because I'd left too. I was no angel in this whole situation. I walked to the window and hugged him. I thought let me hold you, let me love you and he bent his head to mine and kissed me.
It was very intense. It was so good to be kissing Tristan again that I let myself focus on the feel of his lips and his hands on my waist. I wanted to forget everything that had happened and get back to being close to him. I unbuttoned his shirt a little and kissed along the base of his neck. He moved back from me.
“Talk to me about leaving, about my leaving, about things,” he whispered.
I took his hand, sighing, “Ok come and sit down,” but I meant lie down and I led him to my bed. We sat side by side and he held my hand in both of his. He looked down at my hand in his and shook his head. “It’s so hard to think I did that ridiculous thing. I mean really after all I had ever said. Do you have any comment at all Chloe?”
I moved my left hand, which he wasn't holding, along his upper arm, trying to give comfort. “Tristan, only that I am so thankful it’s over, that I love you dearly and felt totally distraught every day I was without you. Maybe we could just forget it,” I said softly. I didn’t know what else to say. Oliver and I had just fallen back into loving each other and behaving just the way we always did. I wanted that to happen with Tristan too. I put my head against his shoulder and thought, Tristan I'll always love you no matter what.
He smiled a little sadly, as he turned his head to me, and whispered “I'll always love you too, no matter what.”
Copyright T.Stokes 2011

  1. This snippet is when I’ve been stabbed and Tristan takes care of me.

From Book three The Seven Spell: Dangerous

When we went back to the table Oliver was grinning at us, and began saying he'd expected Tristan to be able to dance like Corbett, but he guessed that Tristan was better at horse riding than dancing.
Oliver danced with Clare as James and Tristan started talking about the sealed door under the hunting lodge. I listened interested because maybe now Tristan had the deeds to his house he wanted to get the door opened.
I looked around for Lily or Samantha because I wanted some bottled water, but not seeing either of them, I began walking up to the counter at the back of the room to ask for some.
It happened really quickly, one minute I realized Emma was in front of me and she was saying, “Tristan his mine, I love”, and the next minute she had stuck a knife into me. I had turned, ironically to hear her better, and the knife missed my stomach because of this, and went into the soft part of my body between the top of my hipbone and bottom of my ribs. I was shocked because I felt the cold metal go into my body and she grimaced at me. “You dead now”.
I hadn’t realized she spoke any English, even heavily accented, and I thought strangely, perhaps she'd learned these broken phrases especially to say to me as I watched her expression.
I swallowed as she carried on walking as if nothing had happened and I put my hands over the handle of the knife she'd stabbed me with. I turned around feeling dizzy, and my mouth had dried up. I found the crowd parted a little as I went towards the table where my jean jacket was draped over the seat I was using. Tristan was still talking to James. I grabbed my jean jacket and put it against my body. I didn’t know if I was bleeding. I knew it couldn’t kill me, but it hurt, and I felt queasy. Somehow, Tristan realized something was wrong and stood up looking at me.
“I’m not feeling well. I’m going to get some fresh air,” I said as loudly as I could, and it sounded like a whisper to me, but James turned, and looked at me.
“You do look pale, Chloe, even in this light.”
Tristan said, “I’ll go with her. James will you tell Oliver when he comes back please?”
He came around the table to me and we somehow got through the room to the front door and out into the night air. It was crisp and quite cold. I went straight to the wall just up from the front doors and leaned back onto it, taking my jean jacket from the knife sticking in me.
Tristan gasped. “What the hell, who, how did this happen?” He was taking his shirt off and then pulled his T-shirt quickly over his head.
“Emma just came up to me and said you were hers, and I was dead, and just stabbed me. It hurts.” 
He had put his shirt back on and got the T-shirt in a wad. “I'm taking the knife out so you can heal, you'll be okay, really. It will hurt, but just hold on to me”.
I did hold him, and he pulled the knife out. A little silver dagger with a silver carved handle. He held me sideways and shielded me with his body. He pressed the wadded T-shirt onto the wound, which was bleeding now quite a bit. He put the little dagger down on the stone that jutted out at the bottom of the building to form a little ledge all the way around.
“Dear God, Chloe, I'm so sorry...she must be mad. I didn’t realize she was violent. How do you feel?”
He was holding me, and I leaned against him and the wad of T-shirt. I put my head against his chest. It felt safe to be with him. Just then Oliver came up to us, and I saw him across Tristan’s arm, as he came out of the door, saw us and suddenly ran the few steps to reach us.
“Bloody Emma has stabbed her,” Tristan said immediately. “Can you believe it? It will be okay, but it’s horrible all the same.”
Oliver went pale. “Chloe, how is it, are you okay, does it hurt, where is Emma, where’s the knife?”
He  put his hand on my back, and was bending over me as I leaned onto Tristan.
“I’m getting better. I think it may have stopped bleeding, and I still feel a bit sick, but let’s look at it.” Tristan moved a little away from me as I lifted my now ruined, antique green, T-shirt up to check the wound. It had stopped bleeding and had started to heal. It still hurt a little, and the cold air seemed to sting me.
Tristan spoke first. “It’s healing fine you're almost as fast as me now, thank heavens. Though it’s not in all that vital a place, well no vital organs, or you could have fainted or something. Bloody hell, that’s it, she must go home, we can’t have her going around stabbing people, that’s not love.”
Oliver took over holding me, and he gave the T-shirt to Tristan who picked up the dagger and wrapped it in the T-shirt.
“The truck is just over the road in the pub car park. I’m going to take this over there hang on.” He was off crossing the road.
“I’m absolutely amazed, and horrified, yes horrified. Are you sure you're okay? I think we should go home and make sure Chloe,” Oliver said softly to me, and rocked me a little as he held me to him.
I looked up at him and took a deep breath. “I think I’m okay but I do want to go home, plus I think we can’t let her know I’m okay, because how would that be explained? She knows she got that dagger fairly well into my body.”
Tristan was back. “Could we just check the wound again Chloe?” We did, and it was obviously healing fast. It was cold, and I got my jean jacket from the nearby table where Tristan had tossed it and put it on.
Tristan was fastening his shirt buttons. “I’m shocked. I really am, of all things, she’s unbalanced, even back in her time you know ordinary girls don’t go stabbing other girls like that.”
“We can’t let her know I’m okay, well not yet." I pulled my jean jacket around me and shivered. Oliver put his arm around me.
“It might have been worse, but I'd been polite and turned to  hear what she was saying to me. I didn’t realize she could speak any English. She knew what she was saying, and she must have practiced the little she said. I got it in the side instead of the stomach.” I told them both as they looked at me.
Oliver shivered then too. I felt him against me.
“It’s cold now. I was thinking I should get Chloe home. What about you Tristan?” Oliver asked.
Tristan sighed. “I want to come too, this is madness. I just don’t want to be here. I’ll go in and say Chloe's been taken ill. I’ll say goodnight to Liz and Will, as well as James and Clare. Will I say it for you too Oliver?”
“Yes okay, Tristan. The Landrover is over in the library car park, we’ll get going and see you at Chloe’s place okay?” Tristan nodded his answer and started into the front entrance of Kool KafĂ©.
Copyright T Stokes 2011


So what about now the seven spell has finally been put to rest, what happens in your lives? Do you all three stay together?
The seven spell, which was what made Tristan immortal in the first place and what gave us all those adventures, has actually come to it's natural end. The fact we three are immortal and have our special abilities is still a secret from the old magi family. The debt's been paid by Tristan anyway. You know being cast in glass was a big deal, good thing he'd saved both Oliver's and my life or he'd still be a stained glass window. (shivers) That's so horrible to think about. They think the witch Anna let him out. It's all okay now we've become friends and Max or should I call him Rene found love himself. Bartholomew closed the portal from our end, we think. I'm not sure what happened there and I don't care really. There's not much chance of anything coming to us from the past now unless the water has already carried the magic to another place we don't know about and some portal is out there. Don't go there.

We have matured. Even Tristan's changed since I first met him. You know he's lost that forlorn look and that weird old world stuffiness. We have to move in together, Oliver, Tristan and me , because it's the best thing to do and because Hawthorns needs looking after. We base our office there too for the next part of our journey, oh we do have a little office in the town, but the real work is done in the field as I like to call it, and in the house office. The research and stuff like that.

I'm in love with them both and we just get on with it. I'm not choosing, we tried that in an alternative plot line and it was dangerous and horrible. The next couple of stories are about our lives together. It's still weird because how could it not be, I mean we all have these special abilities and Oliver can control Bartholmew's magic stuff. I might stop talking now. Tristan is waiting for me too. We're all on vacation right now and I left him by the pool.

Thank you Chloe for joining us today. I hope that you enjoyed yourself and I hope that our readers enjoyed it also.

I did enjoy it (smiles), thanks for inviting me. 

Tristan Dearing drops by the blog today....

Welcome to the blog Tristan and thank you for agreeing to be interviewed.

You look very young in your pictures can you just refresh my memory? How old are you?

The pictures do wonders for me. I'm 841 years old. Well preserved huh? (smiles)

What is the name of the book where we'll find you? Can you tell us a little about it?

"There are nine books where you’ll find me. The Seven Spell Stories is the name of this series.

It’s new adult paranormal romance/urban fantasy, stuff. That’s genre speak for stories people aged about 17 to 24 might like. I say might because people read outside the box all the time don’t they.

The books incorporate real life with all these fantastic things going on between the characters. As the series goes on and a couple of years go by it does get a little steamy in the love scenes.

It’s weird because although Chloe and I are in love, she loves Oliver too. I think it’s safe to say now that will always be the way. I mean really we’re not normal, we don’t love normal lives, Oliver and I are related way back in history, Chloe too down through time has always been with us somehow. We’re not giving each other up now we’re all in the same time together and now all three of us are immortal. Why?

The books involve, our magic, time travel and our epic love story.

As the series of books progresses it spans about three years, and we do have a lot of adventures. Chloe falls in love with Oliver and with me. That’s hard at times and in book four I very nearly drive her away, but we get together again.

Chloe is twenty+, Oliver is twenty-one+ and I am---- well I just told you that. We’re almost used to the magic that keeps cropping up in our lives and since I saved their lives, and then Chloe saved me, we’ve developed some special abilities. Oh yes that was so weird very nearly dying.
I wish the author hadn’t given a choice of endings in book five. IT’s all very well having reader interaction but the seven spell story hadn’t finished. I know why she did it though. She had lots of emails asking for Chloe to Choose between us. So she gave those ending choices for readers who wanted to step off our story with Chloe having only one love.
Then naturally she picks our story up again and something very strange happens to set the scene for the final two books in the series.
We’re having a holiday right now…I know that’s hard to understand, but you think we’re not real. How do you that the author isn’t just telling you the story of three people she met on her travels. She lives nearby and she’s always into history and spooky goings on, she’s pesky sometimes.
So, we’re on holiday but when we come back we’re moving into Hawthorns together. That causes a bit of a stir (laughs) but the fact is we pretend it’s for our business and that we share the place, but in reality it’s because that’s it, we’ll live together forever now, and we have our own bedrooms. The author does actually let readers into the love scenes a little too. Chloe wears both mine and Oliver’s ring and we wear the ones she gives us. Mmm maybe I’ve just let out a secret…

What do you think of the author? Be honest. We won't tell.

"I’m certain you will tell but I don’t care anyway. She’s great. I think she really likes us three, me, Oliver and Chloe because she gives us all chance to talk, starting in book four, and she gives us all chance to really explore our feelings. She’s been committed to us so that we grow, and develop, and certainly, Chloe and Oliver get to grow up, mature, and re-define their lives by the end of the series so I think that’s cool. She’s let us show our love for each other with lots of romantic moments in the books, so that’s good of her."

How do you feel about the story you're in?

"The story is a lot about me and my history. It allows me to find things out about my family and past that have been kept from me. It gives me love and friendship. I have some very cool things happen so I really like it. It’s a love story, and about friendship and how people grow. It's a story about magic and time travel and really what people do for love."

Do you like being a character in the books?

"I enjoy the freedom of being a character in these books because I do have a lonely existence until Chloe comes along and starts to tell my story to the author. I enjoy having more friends and openness in my life."

How do you see your future? Without giving anything away about the story, naturally. What do you know about your author's plans? Can we expect to see you in any future stories?

"I’m in this for the long haul because the author likes me and because I am a principal character. I feature strongly in book six and seven. There is also a spin off in the pipeline at the moment. It’s about our ‘adult’ lives and so it can’t be called anything with the seven spell in the title. There will be more books now the seven spell has been dealt with. I can’t say too much as it will give the plot away."

Let's say they make a movie about these books. Who do you want to play you, and why?

"That’s so hard to answer.

For two reasons, I want to play me (smiles) and I don’t know many actors. Also I think it might be hard to find someone enough like me for the author not to just say well you do it Tristan (smiles)

Seriously, I can’t answer. I suppose if it were to happen the author better sit in on the casting and make the decision as she knows exactly what I look like, all my mannerisms and what I sound like. Maybe I could watch from the wings."

Tell us three things you really love and please don't include people.

"I love horses, and animals in general.

I never get to say much about this but I love the sea.

I love the countryside.

Can I have one more?"

Yes okay,

"Apples, I love apples, music, and swords, I love swords too" (smiles).

You know that's more than three things don't you?

(Smiles again) "I love so many things, after all 800 years is a long time to fall in love with the beautiful things in life."

This week we welcome back to the blog the lovely Oliver Tarrant

Welcome Oliver,
Tell us about yourself and the book you star in.

Thank you for inviting me to interview.
 I looked at the blog and it’s got a lot of information about The Seven Spell stories, so let’s just say I’m a character in the books. I start out being just your average guy and end up being very different shall we say.
That’s because of Tristan saving my life. He rescued me in book one from a wizard who kidnapped me thinking I was Tristan. Tristan has special blood, which he didn’t know about for , can you believe, 800 years! Anyway he saved me and changed me at the same time into an immortal.
I still try to be normal, you know I keep my job at the restaurant as a wait staff member. That’s where I meet Chloe and I don’t mind telling you, I knew I loved her from the outset, but it’s been a bit difficult as she loves me and Tristan.
Now in the last book I think I get my wish of having her all to myself but it’s an illusion. Book six, Bartholomew Pike’s Spell Book has us seemingly being a real couple. Tristan finds someone else. It’s too good to be true, right?
Right. He doesn’t think he’s been influenced by magic but everyone has been. It’s complicated and it’s a surprise, but although we're looking around to do something better with the special abilities we've developed, and that’s true and real, there’s something else going on with magic. Naturally (laughs) since that stuff has been hanging around Tristan all his life.
There’s an event that is supposed to happen in someone’s destiny, and we have all been lined up to fulfill it.
I maybe better stop telling you this stuff.
Book Seven was released so it’s in that.
What else can I tell you about me? I’m into technology and love computers and stuff. I really care for Tristan too you know like a brother and that’s why it’s been so easy to cope with the fact Chloe loves him too. I’m pretty laid back but I do have quite strong emotions. I’m blond and brown eyed, Tristan’s kind of opposite he’s blue eyed, dark hair, we are sort of reverse twins. (Smiles)
I like to think I’m a good guy. I want Chloe, but you know I also want things to work out well for everyone.

Oliver, I know that we all want to be different, so what is the one thing you wish your creator had done differently with you?

Well now that’s hard to answer. You know what, I can’t think of one thing. I’ve had a wild ride in the stories and I know I’m not a warrior type, but I think I’ve done some cool things and been there for people. I’m hoping it won't end to be honest.

If you could have added something to the story, and your creator would have let you, what would that have been?

I think it might be chock full of magic, time travel, adventure, happiness, angst and weirdness already so I might have added a little more quiet times. As we have all grown up, you know more that I’m twenty-one now and Chloe is twenty+, I think I would have liked a few more love scenes. (Laughs)

What do you love best about yourself? What do you like least?

I love my ability to understand the Chloe loving both Tristan and I thing. I think I actually accept it in a very philosophical way.
What I like least? I suppose like everyone I have my moments of self-doubt. I think it’s not so much what I don’t like as what I haven’t done. You know I’d like to go horse riding in the past. (smiles)

What part of the book was the hardest for you and your creator to work through?

I need to talk about book seven again. I think I’m going to marry Chloe but things might not work out that way. It's more about the seven spell being addressed by Bartholomew and then there's probably some other stories about our lives after that. They can't be called Seven Spell as they will be about our lives as adults.

Clearly there will be another book, but do you think that will be the end of the saga?
Oh I think I just touched on that. It will be the end of The Seven Spell stories because the seven spell in question will be completely dealt with, but it’s not the end of our adventures, well I hope it won't be.The fact that Chloe, Tristan and I have a special bond has to be written differently I'm told, you know we might not look older but we are. I've heard on the grapevine that we move together into the old house Hawthorns. I heard that from Chloe.

Can you share one of your favorite parts of the book without giving too much away and tell us why you chose it?

In book seven you mean? It would be when we go up against Dale’s brother is pretty cool. We have Bartholomew helping us naturally and there are some very tricky magic things happening. I like that part as I get to do some sword fighting.

Anything else you would like to tell us Oliver?

I think I might have said enough, there’s bound to be some secret I've let out that I shouldn’t have. (Laughs)
Oh yeah I have a final secret to let out, I think Chloe opens a detective agency, not some stuffy thing with suits and all, but one that lets us use our magic. Cool huh? We do stay together...all of us...the love triangle thing.
You must think I came here just to let out secrets. (Smiles) 

Thank you Oliver for joining us today. I hope that you enjoyed yourself and I hope that our readers enjoyed it also. 

I did enjoy it, so thanks again for having me as your guest. Thanks to all the readers of the stories, I’ve had a great time sharing my adventures with you.

Reviewed on Amazon UK
 "This is such an enchanting book series!  The Seven Spell Saga by Tessa Stokes is a fun, adventure filled series about a girl from California who finds herself in England, immersed in magic and peril.  Each book will keep you guessing and urgently reading for more!  In this new release, book six in the series titled Bartholomew Pike's Spell Book, Tessa brings us back to the trio we love, Chloe, Tristan and Oliver.  She weaves a tale of daring rescue, fascinating strangers, frightening battles, and compelling romance that is breathtaking in its creativity. 
Overall, this is a great continuation of an already fun and entertaining series.  Tessa has done an excellent job crafting a magical world that exists right in our own backyard, filled with ancient danger, riveting characters, and, best of all, captivating and timeless love".

Welcome to guest author Christine Hughes

A former Army brat, Christine Hughes moved quite often. She spent much of her time losing herself in books and creating stories about many of the people she'd met. Falling in love with literature was easy for her and she majored in English while attending college in New Jersey. Not sure where her love of reading and writing fit, she became a middle school English teacher. After nine years of teaching others to appreciate literature, she decided to take the plunge and write her first novel. Now at home focusing on making writing her new career, she spends her time creating characters and plot points instead of grading papers.

With the sudden, mysterious death of her father, Samantha discovers her life isn’t what it seems. Not only isn’t she the normal teenage girl she thought she was, Sam must now take her father’s place in the fight between two groups of fallen angels—the Faithful and the Exiled—in a race to save humanity. In addition to dealing with the devastating betrayal of her friend and her feelings for someone she is forbidden to love, Sam must also fight the growing darkness within her as she struggles to make a choice between fighting alongside the Faithful or succumbing to the temptation of the Exiled. Both sides require sacrifices Sam isn’t sure she can make.


I knew it was dangerous, but the voice was so tempting...


Unable to speak, I wiped the beads of sweat from my forehead and looked around. I swung my head toward the window and peered outside, searching for the source of the taunting voice. Where was he? The sky had darkened significantly and just beyond the trees I saw a swirling shadow that seemed to pulse. The vegetation surrounding it had withered, becoming gray and lifeless as though the shadow had sucked up all of the energy. A faint hum filled the air, growing louder as the shadow pulsed faster.

Samannnnnnthaaaa...It’s time. Join us.

“Where are you?” I could barely get the words out. “What do you want from me?” This voice had plagued me for months and I wanted to know for sure it was Sebastian, yet the thought of finally knowing, finally seeing him, scared me more than the uncertainty.

The voice chuckled. Join us and I will show you everything.

“Never,” I whispered. “Never. My father died protecting me. I will never come to you.”

Again, a high-pitched and foul laugh rang in my head, making it spin. Dark clouds rolled ominously overhead, the wind picked up and the dull humming became inescapable white noise. Silly girl. You will come to us. You will make the choice. It is your destiny.

Despite my protest, I stepped toward the window then, leaning over the sink, I reached up to unlock it. My reflection was unrecognizable in the glass. My hair was wild and my eyes were huge and black as shadows emanated from within me. Whatever was out there was reaching for me with ghostly fingers, and as I opened the window, a dark mist snaked toward the house. I closed my eyes in giddy anticipation of the unknown.

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