Six months had passed since the ordeal and Jade was finally coming down from her Hellfire high. Her body had gone through major withdrawals and her mind was ravaged by the extensive over usage by Karver for his personal gains.
She was slowly but surely returning to the witch she was before she had been taken by Zavier. Though her seer abilities were still not as honed as her other magics, she was learning how to balance both.
Vincent showed up early. Sarah had Vanessa and he had time to get out and about though he missed his angel. He made note to stop off at her favorite restaurant and get her an ice cream, she loved it even though it was not satisfying. He knocked on the door and waited.
“Bonjour Vincenzo!” Bastian greeted him. “She is in zhe living room.”
Vincent nodded and walked in to find her. He’d made regular visits to check on her well being and was impressed. Bastian kept his word and kept his distance as far as romantic pursuit. But it still concerned him that he wanted to be this close not knowing her as well. Perhaps that was his goal; anything to piss me off, he thought.
“More flowers?” Jade smiled as Vincent rounded the corner.
“You can never have enough right?” he started handing them over and paused. “You won’t electrocute me if I hand these to you, right?”
She laughed. “Only if you continue teasing me with them!” she said snatching the flowers and breathing in a long whiff.
“They’re beautiful, thank you Vincent.”
“How are you feeling? You seem in good spirits today,” he said taking a seat beside her.
“I am. I still see Karver when I close my eyes, but I can’t smell him anymore and my skin doesn’t crawl when I think about what I’ve been through.”
“Her eyes no longer change red either,” Bastian added walking in and handing her a cup of tea.
“Basti was really worried about that for a while. It scared him one night he woke to find me standing over him.”
“I was sure she was going to electrocute me!” he smiled.
“Well there’s always hope for the future right?” Vincent said turning to face him. His phone beeped and he pulled it out to check it. “I gotta run I have a date with a redheaded beauty.”
Bastian saw him to the door. “Look, Bastian. I want to thank you for what you did for Jade. She really needed help through this and I appreciate you being there for her.”
“Trust me Vincenzo, it has been my pleasure,” he smirked.
Vincent stepped towards him and Bastian placed a warning finger at him. “I wouldn’t do zhat. You wouldn’t want Jade to hear. It may distress her.”
“You’re mine, Bastian!” he said exiting in a huff.
Drake was in the living room playing with Raevynn and I was waiting for Maggie to get here. She’d finally planned the trip and I would see her soon.
The bell rang and Drake went to answer as I finished preparing Rae a bottle. “Hey Mags, Danny, great to see you,” he greeted her with a hug. “Zoe’s in the kitchen.”
She heard him but immediately moved to her niece instead. “Hey beautiful! How’s Auntie’s little darling?” she smiled and blew kisses on her belly making Rae giggle. “Where’s my other lovely?”
“School,” I answered joining them in the living room. “He’ll be home in about twenty minutes.”
She dropped her bags by the couch, handed Rae to Drake and gave me a hug as well.
“Zoe,” Danny said smiling and hugging me. “How’s my favorite vampiric soon-to-be sister-in-law?”
“Doing well, Danny thank you. How are things with you?”
“Terrific. It’s been fun learning about my wife’s…soon-to-be wife’s magical side.” He leaned closer, “I think she’s having a little too much fun with it sometimes. Though it’s cutting down on the bill for this wedding,” he whispered.
“Ok Sis, lots to do! The wedding is soon!” she grabbed my arm and we fell on the couch together.
“And this is where I make my exit,” Drake smiled clutching Rae tighter. “I’m not ready for more girlish stuff.”
“Ha! And no CJ right now for your ‘manly’ theme song. Leave my little girl with me and you can be on your way. I’m sure she wouldn’t mind hearing Auntie’s plans.”
“Take me with you please,” Danny said standing. “No offense Hon, but I kinda need a break from the wedding plans too.”
Drake gave me a kiss on the cheek before exiting to the backyard.
“Are you driving him crazy with this?” I asked once the guys left the room.
“Actually he’s been completely wonderful with everything. He’s the one that found the location and it was him that chose the flowers also.”
“It’s great knowing he’s really into this. He’s coping well with everything and that makes me very happy.”
“I think it’s fear. Knowing that we’re witches and you’re a vampire keeps him in line so he doesn’t get cursed!” she laughed. “Ok so I know we mentioned this before, but I loved the idea so much, I’m just going with it: Nautical theme,” she smiled excitedly.
“So you are planning to dress me as a sailor? You know just because you’re older doesn’t mean you can bully me around.”
“Of course it does! You were born for me! I can do what I want to you!”
“We’ll see about that.” I closed my eyes and focused on Mom. She appeared in the room in front of us, smiled and took Raevynn from me.
“All of my girls are here! And Gammy’s little Angel! You’re getting so big Raevynn. You look more like your Daddy every day,” she kissed her and took a seat across from us. “What have you done now?” she said looking at me.
“ME? Mom! No! Margaret is trying to dress us as sailors for her wedding!”
She laughed and looked at her eldest. “Sailors, Maggie? Well I’m sure that only applies to those IN the wedding, which means as mother of the bride, you’re on your own, Zoe.”
“MOM!” Maggie hit my knee and we all laughed.
I heard the whistle from the bus brakes and ran to the door to greet CJ. “Hey handsome! How was school?”
“Boring! We didn’t get to play at all today!” he said shrugging and dropping his book bag by the door.
“Gammy!” he yelled running into the living room to hug her.
“Hello my Dear. You know school is a learning opportunity it’s not supposed to be fun!” she smiled.
“I know. But we get recess sometimes. We didn’t even have that!” he turned and saw Maggie and ran to greet her just the same.
“Do you have any homework?” I asked picking his bag up from the ground.
I handed him his bag and he trotted off to his room to begin. “I’ll bring you a snack when Jasmine gets home.”
Christopher entered his room and moved towards the item on his desk.
“I started. Heckle and Jeckle are in place, but I’m not sure I should keep going. Mommy doesn’t like when I use magics unsupervised!”
Christopher, that’s what I’m here for. You shouldn’t worry about anything. It’ll be fun! Remember how scared you made everyone in the diner? It’ll be that way times ten! Everyone will think it’s funny. Don’t you want to play with your magics?
His eyes went red as he listened to Karver speak. “Will my Mommy and sister be safe?”
I won’t hurt them Christopher. We need them now because they hold the key to all of your magics. I think we should begin, I don’t have the energy and I need you to have fun for me.
He nodded and sat listening to Karver’s instructions.
The bus brought Jasmine home and she went to her room to begin her homework, I dragged Drake from the backyard to start dinner for Maggie, Danny and Jazz.
“Vincent? What do you want now?”
He sighed. “Why do you always ask that Bastian?”
“Jade is indisposed at zhis moment, come back tomorrow.”
“Or I’ll just talk to her now,” he said pushing his way into the apartment.
“What do you want wizh her?”
“None of your damned business Bastian,” he growled.
Bastian smirked. “Feeling a bit tense Vincenzo? Not getting enough…”
“I never have problems in that department shrink wrap. Jade?” Vincent called waiting to hear her.
“As much as I would love to stand here and exchange one liners avec toi, I have to go and buy more groceries for Jade. Please try and be gone by zhe time I return,” Bastian said. (With you)
Vincent waited for Jade to finish showering before knocking on her bedroom door. “No flowers this time?” she pouted.
“Are you serious? I bring you flowers and you complain, I don’t and you complain…women.”
She laughed. “I never said I didn’t like them!” she patted a spot next to her on the bed. “How’s Vanessa?”
“Angelic as always, it’s a family trait,” he smirked.
“She’s great though, an absolute whiz in class and that I know is a family trait.” He pushed himself further against the railing behind him. “Listen I wanted to talk to you about Bastian.”
“Oh? What about him?”
“Has he tried anything with you?”
“You mean has he come on to me? Made a move?” she grinned. “No why? Are you jealous? Need another shock to your system,” she asked teasingly raising her hand.
“No!” he said standing. “I’m good, thanks. I ask because of something he hinted towards and I just wanted to make sure he remains at a distance. He isn’t the type of guy you want to get involved with. He’ll only use you; break your heart and I don’t want that for you.”
“Aww thanks Vincent. Bastian doesn’t seem like that bad a guy really.”
“It’s not real, trust me. I’ve known him for a few hundred years. It’s all an act.”
“Just consider what I said ok? Be careful around him. I can’t trust him and I hate that you’re under his roof.”
“I’ll be careful Vincent, I promise.”
He smiled at her and his phone rang again.
“Is that ‘Jesse’s Girl’?” Jade smiled. “What kind of ringtone is that?”
“It’s not a bad song, just a second.” He stepped into the corner to answer. “Uh…hey Zo,” he whispered. “What’s up?”
He listened for a moment before agreeing and hanging up. “I gotta run Jade. I’ll stop by tomorrow ok?”
“Alright. Later Vincent.”
Jasmine walked her plate into the kitchen as I was saying my goodbyes to Maggie. She and Danny had a long drive ahead of them and lots more planning to take care of.
I shut the door and started for the kitchen to clean. Drake smiled as I rounded the corner. “So I’m just taking a guess here, but Mom didn’t do anything to help out with the sailor’s suit did she?”
“You’re getting some sort of sick pleasure in knowing I’ll look ridiculous in her wedding?”
“Just a little,” he snickered.
“Alright but just remember, my pain is your pain!”
“Zoe,” Jasmine asked saving Drake with a wink. “Can we work on a few spells tonight? I was reading through my Mom’s journal and there was one I was really hoping to try. Tabby told me not to because she wouldn’t be able to help if anything went wrong but I’d really like to see it through.”
“Of course, Jazzy. Let me finish getting the dishes in the washer and I’ll meet you in the garage.”
“Cool!” she said bouncing off towards the magic room.
“Her eagerness to learn all of this magic stuff still impresses me,” Drake smiled. “What spell do you think it is?”
“Too many to guess, but I’m hoping it’s not a huge one. Hearing Tabby’s thoughts on it though says otherwise.”
“That brings up another issue I wanted to talk to you about. I’ve been thinking about Raevynn’s magic,” Drake said leaning against the counter. “I don’t know if it’s wise to let her have access to the powers in the source right now. And especially with the magics that have been recently added because of everything with Karver, she may be too young for her inheritance.”
“Wow, this coming from the man that did everything in his power to convince me to let CJ have his magic as a toddler?”
“That was because of the deal I made, Zoe. He needed his to see everything through but believe me it wasn’t something I truly wanted.”
“Well allow me to be the voice of opposition this time. Even though CJ only needed his powers for that whole underworld takeover thing, I came to the understanding and the appreciation of allowing him to learn his trade that young. Mostly because finding out at age 23 that you’re a witch and have all of this power and responsibility is a bit…frustrating and scary. Our children have us and we can show them how to use their magics the right way. I want Raevynn to learn hers too.”
“You wouldn’t consider binding them until she’s I don’t know, 16?”
“No, I wouldn’t. I want her to know who she is and how to handle herself if needed. What if something were to happen to me before she reaches that age and she had no idea what to expect? I don’t want her to go through what I did with Mom. It’s not a great feeling. Especially when it’s a strange man that tells you about your family’s secrets.”
“Ok first, stranger I can accept, but strange man? That’s just a little rude,” he smiled. “Secondly, you’re a vampire; I think you’ve proven you have more than 9 lives after everything we’ve gone through. There will always be a way to guide her.”
“Are you making contingency plans for my death Drake? That’s comforting.”
“No, of course not, Zoe I’m just trying to make a point. Raevynn will always be able to learn her craft.”
“And she’ll get better tutelage firsthand from someone that’s gone through it. Take a look at Jasmine, she’s as much a pro at this as I am and she’s not even 18 yet!”
“Baby come on,” he said pulling me into his arms. “Think about it at least, give it some thought?”
“Drake, how much of this is for her own good versus your overprotective Daddy attitude? I mean really think about this; you sit outside her door almost all night listening to her sleep as though the baby monitors aren’t enough. You run to her side when she sneezes ready to blow her nose and ensure she isn’t getting a cold, which by the way would be ridiculous considering she’s a vampire. And you watch any and everyone that touches her or holds her like a hawk as though they are planning to make off with her at any moment.”
“What can I say? She needs her Daddy.”
“And you need to let her be a child and feel the bumps of growing pains.”
“So is that a no?”
“Yes Drake, that’s a no. I won’t bind her powers. Now if you don’t mind making sure CJ gets his bath and putting Rae to bed, I have to join Jasmine.”
“I’ll take care of it,” he said leaning forward and gently kissing my lips and I slid from his arms to meet Jazz.
“Hey Sweetie, sorry about that,” I smiled walking into the garage. “So what are we working on?”
“Summoning,” she said as she continued setting everything up.
“What are we summoning?”
“No, not good enough Jasmine. Now if you want to work on this I want to know exactly what you have in mind and why.”
She sighed and took a seat on the couch behind me. “Have you ever been curious about where you came from? Who your family is and what they went through to get to the places they came to settle?”
“Of course, Jazz. We all have those questions at times. What prompted yours?”
“Mom’s journal. I’ve been reading it ever since Aunt Jade reappeared.”
“That’s the book your nose has been buried in? And here I thought you were learning magic.”
“Well I was doing that too but it’s been mostly her journals. The latest one hints that there were other witches in our family. Some that weren’t exactly…good people. She said that many of them used their magics against other witches and people and mostly for their personal gains.”
“And you think that has a bearing on who you are?”
“It might, I mean in science class, we’re learning all about genetics and how that affects who you are. And I…”
“Jasmine sweetheart, you have a pure heart. You are a wonderful witch and an even nicer human being. There is no way the bad genes of the warlocks from your family tree could ever affect that. You were raised by a loving Mother and Father; they did a great job instilling those moral values in you.”
“So does this mean you won’t help me with the spell?”
“No, it means that we’ll have to be extra careful if we’re summoning up a bad witch. They can be tricksters you know, play on your emotions to make you permanently release them. I wouldn’t want that.”
I stood and collected a few more items, crystals, candles and herbs to create a binding around the room to contain the energy.
“What do I do with this?” she asked looking at the small voodoo doll that was attached to her mother’s journal.
“Place it in the center of the summoning circle. It’s the item that will contain the energy from the ancestor you want to speak to.”
We finished setting up the room and I stepped behind her. “You’ll have to do the spell.”
“I know, my bloodline, my summon.”
“Are you ready?”
She shook her head yes, drew in a deep breath and closed her eyes.
The room became still and her chanting was inaudible.
I watched as the energy shifted around her but then seemed to fizzle at her fingertips.
“It didn’t work?”
“It may just mean a little more practice, Jazzy. Once you feel up to it again we’ll give it another try ok? For now why don’t you get some rest? I don’t want you to fall asleep in class tomorrow.”
She nodded her head before retreating to her room.
I cleaned up the items and turned off the light to join Drake in our bedroom.