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pumpkin writing stay for the fun? We’ll go later after it’s over, please?’ Casey could tell the sisters were thinking over her idea as they looked at each other. She decided to push the point. ‘What’s a few hours gonna hurt? We’ll have some fun. You can stir up some costumes. No one will see you in here; it’s just the three of us. When’s the last time you had any real fun on Halloween?’ Casey saw the light twinkle in Cora’s green eyes as she nodded her head. ‘Why not? Magic’s already been used today, might as well.’ Casper let Casey know he thought it a bad idea with a scratch on her arm and she dropped him with a thud. Later Casey came out of the back room dressed as a Fairy Godmother, crown, sparkles, and glitter galore, ready to bestow wishes. She found her cousins all decked out as wicked witches. ‘I should have dressed as Dorothy!’ ‘Cora thought we should have a little fun with humans and their stereotypes for the holiday.’ Smiles broke out as the three girls admired each other’s costumes. So far, no rain had fallen from the clouds that still darkened the sky. Casey kept her fingers crossed as she glanced out the front window. ‘Cora, is the only reason the Council wants me home because of the little bit of magic from today?’ She noticed her cousins exchange a quick sidelong glance before Cora answered. ‘I’m not sure; I think it has something to do with the New Republic of Wiccans in the mountains.’ ‘Who?’ ‘Cora, I’m not sure we should say anything.’ ‘Why not? Besides, I’m sure the Republic sensed your magic today. A few years ago, a group split from the Council and moved into the mountains. They believe that witches should be free to practice witch craft at the expense of humans.’ Cora shrugged as she turned toward Carina. ‘That’s not all; rumor has it, they have something special planned for tonight, All Hallows Eve. Your little town is closest to their group so I wouldn’t be surprised if those dark clouds aren’t compliments of the Republic.’ ‘I can’t leave until after midnight. These people are my friends.’

Casey jumped from the sting of Casper’s sharp claws when he lashed out at her ankles as they stepped into the night and headed for the center of town. The festivities had already begun; the music and bright lights pulsated through the night. The girls stood at the edge of the park and pulled wands from the folds of their gowns. ‘That yours or a toy from the costume store?’ Carina nodded toward Casey’s hand her perfectly arched eyebrow raised in question. ‘What do you think?’ Their giggles echoed, mingling with the laughter of children running about, as they stepped into the light. The evening wore on with everyone having a blast, and no real villains in sight or so Casey thought. She couldn’t be sure with everyone in costume. Her cousins seemed to be enjoying themselves, dancing and keeping their spells to harmless ones. She caught Carina filling a toddler’s goodie bag to overflowing with candy, to the delight of the blue-eyed beauty as she ran off in search of her mother. Her cousins stuck to parlor trick magic, nothing to worry Casey. The dark clouds continued to threaten, and late in the evening, trouble arrived. Whether, drawn by the magic or by the festival Casey had no idea. The pumpkins turned to frightening jack-o-lanterns floating in the air. At first, everyone thought all the commotion part of the entertainment, but then the pumpkins exploded, unexplained fireworks set fires, fights broke out, and the banner fell. Casper tripped Casey to get her attention. ‘The witches from the mountain are here. Find your cousins.’ Casey rushed to find Cora and Carina. They were already chasing the troublemakers. Her cousins were weaving spells to bind, as Casey watched them neutralize the dreadful witches and warlocks. She felt helpless, no idea what to do, she’d let her craft become rusty and useless. Casey realized her friends would’ve been hurt, if not for her cousins. One by one Cora and Carina flew by chasing the Republic witches from the festival and back to the mountain. Casey helped where possible, by following their instructions. The town’s people were buzzing in confusion as they rushed to put out fires and clean up the all the mess. Weary the girls

returned to the antique shop. Casey closed and locked the door just as the town clock chimed midnight. She ran her hands over the ruined costume now covered in dirt and soot. ‘What do I tell everyone?’ ‘Nothing, they’ll not remember anything tomorrow other than a wonderful festival interrupted by a few hoodlums.’ Carina nodded in agreement with her sister. ‘Are you ready to go home now cousin?’ ‘What about my shop?’ Casey looked around, tears forming. It would be hard to leave. ‘It will be here when you return to visit, and so will Josh.’ Casey’s blush her only response to the comment regarding Josh. Cora went on to explain the High Council would be sending Casey’s Great Aunt Margie to look after the shop. The Council wanted someone in place, to send reports regarding activity on the mountain. She assured Casey the town would think nothing of an elderly aunt coming to mind the store. The air shimmered and grew warm as the three began to fade. Casper leapt into Casey’s arms and then they were gone. As she held Casper tight, Casey began to make plans for her return, after she’d learned everything she needed to keep her friends safe. Jean M. Cogdell born in N.C., and grew up in a small town in S.C. She has short stories published in the WTD Magazine, Anthology Once Upon A Time, YAREAH, Flash Fiction World, Squawk Back, and Angie’s Diary Online Writing. She currently resides in Texas with her husband. Jean’s Writing @ jemcogdell.

the pumpkin edition ~ 29

What the Dickens? Magazine - Issue 6: The Pumpkin Edition  

What the Dickens? Magazine A bi-monthly magazine for all creative folk focusing on literature and the arts. Issue 6: The Pumpkin Edition. IN...

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