The Fire Within - Heidi Cooper

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 15 (v.1) - Chapter Fifteen

Submitted: April 28, 2017

Reads: 33

Comments: 1

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Submitted: April 28, 2017

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Chapter Fifteen

 

The alarm clock rang signalling that another morning had arrived. I put a spell on you was playing on the radio. I shut it off and padded to the bathroom. The smell of bacon and eggs filled my nostrils.

 

“Is that you, Em?!” Dad called out, from somewhere in the kitchen.

 

“Yeah!” I called back. “Just about to have a shower!”

 

“Be quick!” He responded. “I am dishing it out in about two minutes!”

 

I completed my regular routine in about thirty seconds flat; a new record for me. My stomach growled in response to the bacon scent invading my nostrils and I charged towards the kitchen. Dad was still dishing it out as I sat down at the table.

 

“Morning, Pumpkin.” He said, smiling at me as he turned to slide the bacon and eggs onto two plates. “How did you sleep?”

 

“Like a baby, strangely. No dreams either.” I said, chewing on the words as much as I chewed on the bacon. “Where’s Mum?”

 

“She had to run a few errands.” He gnawed his food for a moment and added, “Any plans for today, sweetheart?”

 

“Josias has invited me over to his house for dinner tonight.” I left out the part where his mother would not be home; it would just make him worry. Besides, I knew how to handle myself. I was a witch now. What could possibly go wrong? I shovelled the rest of my food into my mouth and rinsed the plate.

 

“I’m gonna go get ready!” I called out as I rocketed up the staircase.

 

I threw on my favourite dress. It was a boob tube style dress that fanned out at the waist. It was ombre; the bust a pale blue and the skirt an electric blue. I slipped on my dark blue ballet flats and checked myself in the mirror.

 

“That will have to do.” I said as I smoothed down my skirt.

 

I loosely braided my hair and clipped it in place with a blue rhinestone butterfly clip. I liberally applied my grape scented lip gloss before grabbing my bag and heading down the stairs. Josias was waiting at the bottom of the stairs for me with my dad.

 

“Ah, here she is.” Dad said. Josias flushed as he caught sight of me.

 

“You look gorgeous, Em.” He said, running a hand through his thick crop of dark hair.

 

“You kids have fun.” Dad said, as we headed out the door. “Be home by midnight, Em.”

 

Dad watched us walk to the end of the footpath before he retreated inside, closing the door. Josias looked a little nervous which was not like him. “We will have to walk tonight. Mum took the car – I borrowed it for our date the other night.”

 

“That’s fine,” I said. “It’s a nice night for a walk anyway.”

 

Josias seemed to relax a little. Perhaps he was feeling nervous about admitting he didn’t have his own car? Not that it would make me admire him any less. I enjoyed his company, his hugs and his kisses. I loved just being around him – he made me feel whole, somehow. Home. I took in the beautiful scenery as we walked. There was barely a cloud in the sky. The sunset to the west was a stunning array of pinks, oranges and purples against a sky blue. A slight breeze blew; I shivered.

 

 “Are you cold, Em?” Josias said, shrugging his jacket off his shoulders.

 

“No, the breeze is actually really nice. I usually feel really hot but this is just…nice.”

 

“Well, that’s because you are hot.”

 

I smiled, blushing slightly and tucked a wisp of hair behind my ears. His fingers slid into mine and we locked hands. It felt so comfortable. We walked for what seemed like thirty minutes. Lime and emerald green trees surrounded us on both sides, bordering the cobblestone sidewalks.

 

Odd. I’ve seen this before…

 

 I couldn’t shake the de ja vu feeling I had grown somewhat accustomed to these past weeks. My life was beginning to sound like it was laid out on the pages of a science fiction novel. I felt a little nervous but put it down to the fact that it was the first time I would visit Josias house – and we would be alone. Alone. I hoped I could restrain myself around him. I knew I wasn’t ready to go all the way – with anybody – but I also knew that in the heat of the moment -

 

Em, relax. There is nothing to worry about…

 

The protruding attic windows suddenly caught my attention; the thatched roof. I have seen this before… I suddenly realised we were in an alleyway. The house with the familiar attic windows loomed over me, daring me to keep walking forward. I must have lost myself in my thoughts because suddenly a warm kiss on my lips shook me back to the present.

 

“Em, earth to Em.” Josias said, as he pulled his face away from mine. “You were a million miles away. Everything okay?”

 

His eyes twinkled in the light from the streetlights that suddenly turned on. It was getting dark. I shivered again – not because I was cold – strange feelings washed over me making my extremities feel tingly before going numb.

 

“I – I am fine. It’s just…it’s nothing.” I stammered, flexing my hands in a repetitive motion in an attempt to get some feeling back. I sucked in a breath as a barrage of pins and needles stabbed me from wrist to fingertips. I couldn’t find the words to tell him what I was feeling without going into detail about stuff I had been sworn to secrecy about. Perhaps I was just being ridiculous. There could be a tonne of houses that look the same. Not every house has to be unique, right? I chewed on that thought suddenly aware that Josias was hovering in front of me – his face painted vividly with the colours and shapes of concern. I exhaled deeply. I had been holding my breath; my head felt a little fuzzy – like I was deprived of oxygen. Is this what a panic attack feels like?

 

“Em, sit.” His voice sounded like he was speaking from inside a barrel. I felt him grab my hands gingerly and lead me to a nearby seat. We sat down, him right against me. I felt completely ridiculous. What the hell was happening? And in front of Josias? Get a grip, Em. Josias pulled me against him; I snuggled against his chest and let the steady rhythm of his beating heart guide me back to normality. Deep breaths, in and out, in and out. Congratulations Em! You have just been promoted from Space Cadet to all out basket case. My cheeks flushed, suddenly feeling extremely embarrassed. I felt my the ring on my hand tingle and suddenly remembered how it transported me from the second floor landing to my bedroom – granted it was while I was asleep – could it do the same in the waking realm? Please don’t take me away from Josias. I’ll be fine. I’ll be fine. My ring suddenly felt warm against my finger; it vibrated for a half a second and just like that, my anxiety melted away like the wax of a lit candle.

 

“I – I’m fine.” I said to Josias.

 

“Are you sure?” He said, clearly worried about me. “I thought you were having an anxiety attack.”

 

“I – I don’t know what happened.” I said. “I am okay now.” Had my ring calmed me somehow?

 

Josias looked at me for a few minutes, studied my face. I felt the pinkness appear high on my cheeks. He suddenly smiled and kissed me forehead, before pulling me to my feet. He studied me again – paying close attention to my newest piece of jewellery?

 

“Are you sure you’re okay?”

 

“I am fine, Josias. Really.” I responded, bringing myself up to almost his height on my tippy toes to kiss his soft lips.

 

“Ok.” He said, relaxing slightly. “Come on, we’re almost there.”

 

We rounded the corner of the alleyway and onto another street. I noticed it straight away and froze. In front of me, was the house with double stained glass doors.



© Copyright 2017 H D Cooper. All rights reserved.

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