June 5, 2013

Blogoversary Party: The Keeper's Chronicles

Michelle Birbeck is one of our dearest Suped up author and today, she granted our request by writing us in her series, The Keeper's Chronicles! Read up and we hope you enjoy us as witches. 

“Hello?” I called. A quiet house greeted me, which was unusual. On the rare occasions when I went out to work, Ray always stayed home waiting for me. I could normally find him sitting on the edge of the living room sofa, one hand clasped on his knee, the other holding a new history text. His façade was meant to show how calm and all right he was with my occasional working habits, but it was only a façade. The pages never turned of the book he held, and the hand gripping his knee left deep indents in his trousers. Not this time.

I scowled at the empty house, and picked up my phone. “Hi, Poppy, is Ray with you?”

“No, Issac and I are out for… dinner.” A smile was evident in her voice.

“Ah,” I paused, still unsure what to say to such a thing. “Have fun?”

“Oh, don’t worry, we will.”

She hung up, and it struck me as odd that she hadn’t asked why I was looking for my husband. Then again, perhaps I didn’t want to know just how distracted she was.

I scanned the living room, letting my senses search out the entire house, making sure I hadn’t missed him. A scrap of white out of place in the living room caught my eye. When I picked it up, it held just three words in ray’s handwriting: Come quick, trouble.

The other side held an address. It wasn’t one I recognised, but the street I knew.

I was out of the door before I had even finished reading the address. And there was where I ran into my first problem. Daylight, rush hour, people. The street teemed with people coming home from work, making deliveries, heading out to work. No way could I race through the streets to Ray, not without having to change the mind of every person who saw me. Instead I set off at a dead run, just too fast to be human, but not too fast to be noticed.

The street passed beneath my feet far too slowly, each pounding step matching my heart. What trouble did Ray mean? Was he all right? He had to be alive. I stopped that train of thought before it could go any further.

As I ran I dug out my phone, dialling Lizzy’s number. The engaged tone beeped in my ear. Damn it! Of all the times for her to be on the phone!

Didn’t matter, anyway, the street on the address was in front of me and I was almost there. Almost.

The building loomed above me, and I slowed to a stop, squinting up at the expensive hotel. If the Seats were behind whatever was happening, they would want somewhere like this. Top of the line, costly as buying a house, and far too public for me to kill anyone.

My pace as I entered the building was slow and even. A doorman held open the door with a welcome smile. People bustled around in the lobby, high heels and expensive shoes tapping out an echoing rhythm.

Directions above the doors told me the room Ray had mentioned in the note, and I headed that way before anyone could offer me a helping hand.

As I approached the door, I could hear a number of heart beats and whispered breaths. I couldn’t pick Ray’s out of the bunch, but he had to be in there. Were the others human? It was impossible to tell whether there were more breaths than heartbeats, but none of the beating hearts seemed to be scared.

I opened the door quickly, stepping inside, preparing myself for a scene of god only knew what.


Light flooded the room. A huge banner was hung from the ceiling reading “Happy 3,000th Birthday!”

Relief almost made me sag to the floor.

Ray stepped out of the crowd sheepishly, a soft smile on his face. “Happy birthday, my love.”

The party started, people mingling and talking.

I wrapped my arms around Ray and held him tight. “Don’t you ever do anything like that again!”

He laughed and kissed me briefly. “It was all Braine’s idea! I am not responsible in any way.”

The witch I had known for a little over a century waved a small hand at me and offered me an attempt at an apologetic smile. But as a witch, she was sure to have no regrets at all over scaring me half to death. Still, as I approached her, Ray’s hand tightly in mine, she did at least duck her head.

“This is all your fault?” I asked, giving her a glare.

Debbie helped.” She grabbed her twin’s arm and pulled her close. “We did it together.”

“Yeah, I bet you did.”

Twins in the witch world were few and far between, but when they did arise, they were worse than your average witch. Their thoughts were so alike, so attuned to each other that the slightest impulse became reality.

Whilst keeping a tight hold on Ray, relief still gripping me, I pulled Braine and then Debbie into a one handed hug.

“How did you know today was the day?” I asked, glancing between the two.

Debbie gave me a sarcastic look. “How do you think, sweetheart? We’re good.”

A laugh from Braine had her sister glaring at her. “What my darling sister means to say is, we’re witches, honey, we can tell what date it is from the sun in the sky, no matter the year.”

“And besides,” Debbie added, “after you saved our mother, throwing you a party was the least we could do!”

“We witches pay our debts,” Braine reminded me.

That they did, no matter how many times I insisted that they didn’t owe me anything.

The twins grinned at me once more and wandered off to join the party. I spotted my niece Lizzy in the crowd and glared at her, along with several other people with whom I’d be having words later. Scaring the hell out of me for the sake of a party was a nice enough idea, but using my husband to do so required stern words.

“Are you very mad with me?” Ray whispered, pulling me into his arms for a dance.

“You, no. Mostly.”

He leaned in close and smiled. “Good, because your birthday present will be at home when we are. And I fully expect you to unwrap me slowly.”

Suddenly all the worries and words ceased to matter, especially with the promise of unwrapping to finish off the evening.

Michelle is 30 and has been writing and reading her whole life. Her earliest memory of books was when she was five and decided to try and teach her fish how to read, by putting her Beatrix Potter books in the fish tank with them. Since then her love of books has grown, and now she is writing her own, and looking forward to seeing them on her shelves, though they won’t be going anywhere near the fish tank.

Stalkers Welcome!

Thanks Michelle! It was fun being witches and we're so happy to help everyone celebrate Serenity's 3,000th birthday!
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