by Sean Anand
This is a draft of a short story that I wrote originally for a competition.
|The moon above shone like a diamond jewel in the clear black sky. Drew looked up and sighed in defeat. Pulling his jacket around his thin frame, he shivered in the cold night air. He did not want to be here, but his client told him that if he wasn't, he was not going to get paid then. He sighed and then frowned, wishing that he had a cup of coffee. The area around him was slightly barren, but then again, what more could you do when someone told you to meet them in a graveyard?
He had been approached by a man in a long black suit who said that his client was looking for an experienced wizard who would ask no questions. Drew didn’t know how he had been chosen for this. He was simply a bike courier. It was true that he was a wizard, but an experienced one? That was enough to make him laugh. Before he had been able to say anything to the man, about mistaken identity or having the wrong person, the man had given him a scrap of paper and told him to be at the place written on there tonight. He then mentioned that if he wasn’t, there would be no payment.
Apparently the man had looked Drew up and had found out about his ‘half before, half after’ policy. It usually made sure that anyone who procured the services Drew had to offer would not try to stiff him after the service was performed. This however had been different. Most people who came to him wanted him to find something, and most of them paid him crap. It was barely enough to help supplement the rent check. Now he was at the place that was written in the small scrap of paper.
That place had been a really old cemetery. At least it had not been Lake View Cemetery. He knew that he wouldn’t have gone anywhere near there. Looking around this place, he knew he had somehow gotten himself into trouble. What ever the case though, it didn’t matter now. He crossed his arms and tried to imagine what the gorilla in the suit had wanted. What could that man want in a graveyard to boot?
He was tired and wanted to go home. Looking at his watch, he saw that the time was getting closer to midnight. He had been here since 10:30! He zipped up his jacket and then adjusted the ball cap that was on his head. The cap had a large W on the front of it and as he pulled it over his orange tinged curls, he heard the sound of a twig snapping. Drew rolled his eyes and turned around.
Behind him a thin woman in original French dress stood. The woman was dressed in a white over-bust corset with an hourglass shape to it. Her long dress covered her straight down to the last inch of her legs and then trailed behind her. On top of her corset, she wore an exceptionally detailed bodice. There was no way that she was dirt poor like most of his other clients. Drew looked at her hair and saw that she had her long blond hair piled up into a mass of curls on top of her head in a small beehive which also allowed for the rest of her hair to fall in long wavy curls around her face and down to just above her shoulder blades. Drew's mouth all but fell open.
Drew’s mind rapidly went through several different thoughts. She seemed Otherworldly. She was rich. She was not the man in the gorilla suit. She had to be rich. She was the most beautiful thing he had seen in a long time. She had to be absolutely loaded with money. She must be willing to pay him a lot for him to come to this graveyard so late at night and on a full moon to boot. His thoughts were soon cut off though.
"Are you Drew Mullens?" The voice that came out of her mouth was soft and smooth. Drew nodded his head in dumb appreciation. Her voice was sultry, though her eyes seemed to do a lot more talking than her lips. The woman in front of him had to be worth a lot of money and if that were the case, he would be able to charge the woman a lot more than he usually did when he did these jobs. The woman stopped in front of him and stared him down with dark purple eyes and smiled slightly. Her skin appeared to be completely smooth and not a scar on it. What caused Drew to take a really deep breath though was the fact that she did not have any makeup on. Her face looked almost like a porcelain doll. The only defining mark about her was the faint smell of lilacs. She seemed perfect. He paused and then shivered due to the cold that he had momentarily forgotten.
He quietly took hold of himself and then made a deep bow in front of the woman and then said, "Drew Mullens, licensed practitioner, I even have my MW. If you wish to see proof first, I can-"
The woman held up her hand. "That is quite all right. I only want to see the code." Her voice was suddenly quite flat.
Drew sighed once more wishing once again for the tangy taste of coffee, and then looked around, almost as a paranoid habit. Of course no one would be within the graveyard. Why would anyone be inside of a graveyard? Grumbling to the darkness, Drew pulled his coat and hat off, dropping them to the ground and then tugged at the long shirt that he was wearing. Taking the long-sleeved sweater off, he shivered once again. The sweater was pooled around his wrists as he took it off. He was never very adverse to wearing undershirts, so when his bare skin hit contact with the cold air, thousands of goose bumps appeared across his flesh. As he shivered again, he motioned with his head to his right shoulder. There on his shoulder, a large barcode had been tattooed. Instead of numbers, a number of arcane runes had been written underneath it.
"That is the code I received. As I said, I am licensed here in the state of Washington. If there is anything else that you need-" Once again, Drew was cut off by a slim white hand.
"You will do." Her accent was no longer as divine to Drew's ears as it once used to be. She motioned behind him and slowly glided past him towards the center of what Drew liked to refer to as a 'lawn of death'.
Drew was left to frown and mutter and mumble more to himself as he pulled his sweater back on and then grabbed his discarded leather bomber that was on the ground. Thankfully, it was cold enough that the ground had frozen and there was no dirt on the jacket. As he pulled the jacket back on, he looked up and then heard a rather loud clatter. Drew looked back down and there on the ground was his wand. It was long ash wood tipped with a small quartz crystal that he knew he had paid too much for, even for it's terminated point.
He snarled and picked the wand back up and then shuffled after the woman. He had not been told what the woman wanted, nor even that she was a woman. He had only been told to bring his wand and where to meet the client. It was then that he realized he had left his hat on the ground back a few feet. Turning around, he went to pick that up as well. Tonight was obviously going to be longer than he had hoped for.
As he walked in the path of the woman in front of him he wondered what it was that she wanted. His normal clients were those who wanted him to find something that had been lost, or to simply check if they were hexed, or to hand them a love philter (not that he could do that legally without a specific license). He followed the woman to where a large ash tree tilted towards the ground and seemed to try to be grasping for the sky. The woman stopped and turned towards him with a small smile and then put her hands behind her back and spoke to him again. "Have you ever done a Summoning before?"
Drew looked at her aghast. It was well known that in order to pass the exam to get one's License, that you had to perform a minor summon. "Of course I have."
The girl smiled. "Then you won't mind doing a Rite of Passage then."
Drew felt a cold chill go down his back and it had nothing to do with how cold it was outside. "I'm not so sure that I should-"
"You have nothing to worry about Mr. Mullens. You are a licensed practitioner." The words seemed to fall directly upon Drew and he knew that like it or not, he would have to do what he had been asked to do. He sighed in defeat and regret and opened his mouth to say something when, once again, he was cut off by the woman who was standing there. "Please understand Mr. Mullens, you will be paid handsomely for this job, it's just that I need this done tonight."
As a last ditch effort, Drew tried to push it aside, "I don't have any of the necessary equipment here though! I would need a lot of stuff that is not easily available here at the moment." His plea was on deaf ears however as the woman walked around the other side of the tree and pulled out a small carpet bag and plunked it on the ground in front of Drew. Drew looked at the case and realized that he had been neatly trapped into doing this magick. He looked at the ground and kicked a stray pebble that was there and then said in a quiet voice, "Umm, there is something that I am going to have to admit to you..."
"Do not worry Mr. Mullens, may I call you Drew?" Drew nodded in bewilderment. "You may call me Stephanie." Once again Drew nodded, though he thought about her name and figured that it was not the name that one would normally expect from someone dressed as she was.
"I know what you were about to tell me Drew." Drew looked at her with a gaze that signified doubt, and Stephanie simply smiled and said, "I know that you are not formally licensed here in the State of Washington." At this, Drew's mouth fell open again.
"How did you know?" The girl simply smiled. "I actually do have my Masters in Wizardry, and I even got the tattoo done by a reputable friend! He swore to me up and down that this was a registration tattoo looked like!" Drew was stumbling over his words, trying to rationalize himself, when he realized that he had just told her exactly what she suspected. He cursed. Stephanie giggled, covering her mouth as she did so.
"I saw the tattoo on your arm and while it looks like one of the standard registration tattoos of the Seattle Council, it is not in any way one of the recognizable ones." She paused and then tapped his right shoulder where his faux tattoo was hidden under his sweater. "Real registration tattoos show a 3D representation of the barcode and do not require a wizard to take his shirt off." Drew smacked his head with his palm and then looked even more defeated than he already was.
"Are you going to report me then?" Drew looked at the woman who was now searching her way through the carpetbag. As she was bent over it, she began to pull items out of the carpetbag so that they could get prepared for the magick that was needed that night. Drew watched as candles, incense, herbs, a small cauldron, a chalice, a small long handled wooden knife, and a few other implements were pulled out. Drew almost laughed, but chose not to. Stephanie could very well take him into the authorities and turn him in for pretending to be a licensed wizard. The Seattle Council did not like one to imitate them. There were several cases that Drew could remember on the news, saying the horrible fates that had happened to pretenders.
When Stephanie didn't answer, Drew tried to get her attention again. "I can't perform this for you if I am not licensed right?" This statement made Stephanie stop rummaging in the large carpet bag and look back up to Drew with purple eyes.
"In order to get your license you have to have a Masters in Wizardric studies, your MW, a patron to ask for your license, and the ability to have done a Rite of Passage, which allows you to be able to pass the Summoning component of your license exam. Am I correct so far?" Drew nodded in dumb amazement. So far, Stephanie was fairly well known in what was needed for a person to get their Wizard License.
"So then it goes to show that you need this more than I do in order to make sure that you are legal to practice here." Drew crossed his arms, partly in effort to stave off the cold and partly because he wasn't sure what to make of Stephanie. Stephanie finally finished pulling things out of the carpet bag and looked at Drew with her strangely purple eyes.
"I still don't know if I can perform this," Drew tried to hammer out his statement with an air of coolness, but deep in his mind, he was afraid this was a sting. The woman he was talking to right now could very well be a licensed wizard and sent by the council to flush out those who tried to practice without a license. If the Council caught him, then he could not only kiss ever getting a license goodbye, but his mediocre job as a bike courier goodbye as well. It was well known that anyone who was blacklisted by any Council across the United States, according to new laws passed, was blacklisted in every state. The only place where they would take him afterwards would be in the black market, and he didn't even have his License yet to be revoked!
It wasn't until six years ago that the laws had been passed. Before then, practicing wizardry in the United States was usually not the norm. It wasn't until the Grand Council Meeting, when wizards from all over the United States came together and marched on congress. After two days, the wizards’ demands for equal rights were heard. Bills had never been passed more quickly or more unanimously in the entire history of the United States. Two months afterwards, wizards inundated society almost like lawyers, dentists, and other patrons that were necessary but feared. Wizards filled one of those niches, and like everyone else, had to pay taxes, and still have a hierarchy. The National Society of Wizards was founded just as such a purpose and it was they, the top wizards from across the country, that were responsible, much like the lawyers bar association, that kept the standards of wizards everywhere in the United States.
Now, Drew was standing in a graveyard, with a strange woman, who could very well be working for the Seattle Council and she was asking him to do something that he had never done before. Rites of passage were not an everyday common occurrence that one did at a whim. You had to have the right time to perform it, and you also had to have the right materials. "I don't know if you know this, but I can't perform this without having all the proper information." At this, Stephanie held out a piece of paper to Drew and he tentatively took it. He was half expecting to see a ticket from the Seattle Wizards Security Department. Instead, it was a small list of things that were needed to perform the ritual and all the pertinent information that was needed to perform the rite. He blinked and then looked at Stephanie.
"If you do this for me Drew, then I will promise you that you will have a patron to ask for your license."
Drew looked at her skeptically, his hands dropping to his sides. He shivered once again because of the cold and then shook his head. "You guarantee that you are not from the Seattle Council's Security Department, working undercover?"
Stephanie rolled her eyes. "I am not working undercover. If it makes you feel better, I am actually the daughter of the Mayor's House Wizard. My full name is Stephanie Dupree." Drew's mouth fell wide open and he dropped his wand again to the ground as he stood there and stared. The girl was politically connected! It was worse than he had originally made out to be. He groaned and Stephanie put her hands on her hips. "If you have a problem, say so now."
Unfortunately, Drew could not manage to work his mouth fast enough for Stephanie and she rolled her eyes again. She seemed so much more human now than she had when Drew had first seen her. He then noticed a small amulet peaking out of her corset. He was shocked again and pointed at it. "A Sidhe Amulet!"
Like a guilty child, Stephanie pushed the amulet back into her corset and smiled rather meekly. "Sorry, I figured it would help me in winning you over."
"I thought that you were something else!" Now that Drew knew exactly what it was that he was fighting against, he muttered under his breath at her. She had been trying to use a magickal amulet to try to influence him into helping her! As if he wasn't caught already; she was the daughter of Seattle's most famous wizard, Archer Dupree! No wonder she knew so much about everything.
"Well now you know. Pick up a candle and let's get started with this all."
"Oh no, this is so not what I was up for." Drew shook his hands in the air. "I am so not going to help the daughter of the most powerful Wizard in Seattle to perform her Rite of Passage!"
Stephanie threw a dirty look at Drew. "Listen here now Drew. You are going to help me whether you want to or not. You aren't licensed here. I could have you Black Listed because of this."
Drew pointed an accusatory finger at her. "You brought me here under false pretenses! The man who came to see me did not say anything about a Rite of Passage!"
Stephanie rolled her eyes as she put a hand on her hip. "Of course not. If he had told you, would you have come?"
Drew shook his head. "No I wouldn't have! No one in their right mind would do this!"
"And if he had told you that is was the daughter of Archer Dupree who needed your help would you have helped?"
"Never in a million years!"
"There, you see? No one would have come at all."
Drew sighed and exasperation crept into his tone of voice. "Don't you have friends or connections of your father who would have helped you with this? I mean there has to be a million wizards who would want to help you perform your Rite."
Stephanie snorted, something that Drew was not even sure she was able to do in that tightly laced corset. "That's right; and everyone of them is a pompous pig hoping to bind my power to themselves." Drew frowned. He had looked over and read a few Rites, but he had never heard of anything like what Stephanie was talking about. Before he could ask, she continued talking. "If any of them were to even guess what I wanted to do, I would be clapped in Irons so fast, I wouldn't know what side was up or down by the time they were done."
Drew's eyes grew wide in fear. Even the thought of cold Iron made him almost loose his nerve. Cold Iron was one of the things that A Licensed Wizard could not touch. There was no magick within it and it was also the only substance on earth that could actually drain a wizard of their powers. Stephanie seemed to realize what she said and she winced.
"Oh, sorry about that."
Drew shook his head. "No, that's all right. I simply can't stand it." He shivered at old memories of his childhood growing up.
"Something happen?" Stephanie looked at him with a questioning look. Drew frowned and shook his head.
"Maybe I'll tell you some other time." At this Stephanie perked up.
"That means then that you will do the Rite for me?" Her voice was an octave higher than originally and now she sounded like a childish little girl rather than the beautiful woman that he had originally seen when he had first met her.
"Yes, I will help you. I'll help you do your Rite." Stephanie let out squeal of delight and then giggled and then she pointed to the supplies. "So help me set up here."
Drew shook his head no. "First we need to have a small conversation on what happens here." Stephanie nodded her head, rather quickly. It was too quickly for Drew, but it insured him that she would probably agree with almost anything at that moment.
"First, I will be getting a patron; who will it be?"
With that one word Drew wished he had not said anything, but he was desperate to have his license. "All right then, second, I want you to make sure that no one, and I mean no one, hears about this at all. That includes your father."
Stephanie made a face, "He'll know that someone helped me perform my Rite and-"
Drew's was a little panicked and it showed in the tone of his voice, "No one knows it was me."
Stephanie put a hand on his shoulder and smiled kindly at him. "No one will know that it was you. There are thousands of Wizards who write to us who want to have us as their patron. I'll make something up about your letter having touched me. Plus, I get to choose who I patron."
“All right then, third: Tonight is a full moon. Do you know what kind of trouble you are asking for?”
Stephanie shrugged. “Rites of Passage can only be done on a full moon. There’s no getting around it.”
Drew scowled at her. “The full moon messes with the magickal energies that we use! There is no way in the eighty-one hells that any wizard worth his salt would cast a spell now unless he had backup.” He waved his wand at the sky in reference to the moon as well as to back up his point.
Stephanie gave him a bland look and then said, “If that was the case, then why did you agree to tonight?”
Looking down at the ground, Drew mumbled, “I think it has something to do with money."
“Money solves everything,” Stephanie said matter-of-factly as she crossed her arms.
“Yeah well, you do know that it could be potentially dangerous-”
“With you not having your license and all? Yes, I know. But when I am given the choice of doing this on my own, or having my father plan it for me, I am more than willing to pay you and be your patron for the chance to have my own Rite preformed properly.” Stephanie shrugged at that moment as if it explained everything.
Drew nodded his head and looked down at the ground and picked up one of the small white candles that was laying near his feet. "Well then, lets get this done. Where do you want the circle drawn?" He looked at the paper and read down the list of requirements. Taking stock of the moon and the time, he looked at his watch again. It was twelve past midnight. They had a total of eighteen minutes left. "By the way, why did you choose a cemetery to do this?"
Stephanie shrugged and then looked rather annoyed. "When you summon something, you have to draw a circle. In order for it to be truly useful, a circle can't have any holes in it anywhere. That means no pipes, cracks, or anything else can be going through the ground as they provide a hole in the circle's walls." Drew nodded and then shrugged his shoulders. He had heard such things before in classes he had taken while in college, but he had never needed to use a circle since then, so he never really paid any attention to it.
“That’s true, but that’s only if the Otherworld is going to be accessed.” As Drew spoke he looked at Stephanie and then when she didn’t respond back to him, he cursed out loud in a rather foul manner.
“I refuse. Deal off. I don’t want to play this game anymore, I am going home.” Drew turned to walk off and Stephanie grabbed hold of his arm.
“I don’t think so. You go now and I tell everyone what you have been up to and report you to the council.” Drew tried to jerk his arm away from the girl’s iron grasp and managed to get himself free after two attempts.
“That is blackmail,” Drew hissed as he rubbed his arm.
Stephanie tapped her foot on the ground and looked rather pleased with herself. “Call it what you like, but I usually get what I want.”
“Stuck up brat.”
“Two bit un-licensed hack.”
That one stung. Drew frowned and then gave into the girl’s whims. “I hope your father told you how dangerous it is to summon Otherworld energies?”
Stephanie once again rolled her eyes and looked up at the moon in the sky. “There is no problem with summoning it in a circle.”
Drew exploded on her in a flurry of hand and wand shaking. “We could blow ourselves away with Otherworld energy! We’re in a graveyard for heavens sakes!”
Stephanie motioned around her and exploded back. "There are very few places within the city where you can make a circle large enough to cast a Rite! All of those places are watched, every single last one of them. The only place that has a large enough area that is not watched is this graveyard. If you want to have my father come down and descend upon us mid-rite, then go ahead and suggest another place!"
Both of them stood staring at each other until Drew nodded his understanding and then sighed. He looked down at his watch. "Less than ten minutes. Let's get this over with."
“As long as we make the call before the allotted time, we should be fine.” Stephanie’s tone indicated a know-it-all. When you lived with Seattle’s most powerful wizard as a father, how could you not be one though? Drew pointed his wand upwards with an acerbic look on his face in response. Stephanie simply pursed her lips.
Moving quickly, Stephanie began to set up the items around them to form the layout for the circle, which was at least 12 feet across. Drew grumbled to himself and held out his wand and then began to trace the necessary symbols in the air. As he traced over the air, the invisible lines became visible from the end of his wand. Orange symbols floated in the air and intertwined with each other as they hung there. He turned to Stephanie as soon as he was done and balked as she handed him a white candle and then lit it with a lighter from her other hand and then lifted her own candle from the ground.
"Are you ready then?" Stephanie looked at Drew with a bit of a smile that he could not help but smiling back.
"Remember, no one knows that I did this for you then." Drew's tone was rather low and Stephanie rolled her eyes and stuck her tongue out. “Also try to remember that something could go wrong because of the full moon.”
Ignoring Drew, Stephanie closed her eyes and then walked to the East side of where the circle was going to be and began by calling the Watchtowers.
"Hail to thee, Ancient ones of Air!
Blow soft around us this night
That the restrictions and pains of childhood
Will be but memories in the mind of the adult."
Drew looked at her and frowned as he held his candle out and then said, "Is that really necessary? Do you have to use that antiquated version?"
"Antiquated? Listen here, I have it on grand authority that-"
"No, I don't think so. Your authority is a bit wrong. Since I am the wizard that is doing this, I think that we should do this my way. So here's what is going to happen; you are going to stand in the South end of the circle." Drew motioned her with his wand and she walked over there with her candle. Drew placed his candle in the center and then said, "Instead of doing this the way that you wanted, we are going to do this my way." He raised his wand and uttered something under his breath that he was sure Stephanie would not be able to make out and then around them almost instantaneously; a large bubble of multicolored force surrounded the twelve-foot circle. He looked back at Stephanie who did not look amused at all.
"That was the instant circle they taught you in school wasn't it?"
Drew shrugged. "Sometimes, things to save time are better than the long and arduous casting. We need the energy and the way I see it," he looked to his watch and shook his head. "We have less than five minutes left to us if the time table on the paper you gave me is going to work."
Drew quickly stalked his way to the North side of the circle and then pointed his wand directly above him and began the incantation, closing his eyes. Across the circle, Stephanie also closed her eyes and from around them, the winds of the Otherside began to blow. Swirling through them and the circle, their hair was picked up in a gust of wind that was only apparent within the twelve-foot circle. The winds whipped across the area as Drew continued his incantation in Latin, one of the original wizardric tongues.
" Beatus Era of mille Nomen, Vos quisnam professio Virgo, Matris quod Crone. Tribuo ut is nox noctis bindings of childhood ero infractus Quod vinculum inter matris quod filia exsistofulcio. Pro duos, ut sic pondero per totus partum, Es tamen statua of thee in thy divinus Trinity. Valde Senior Ancient unus of ager quod Conjux ut nostrum Era, Nos scisco utsententia wouldst tribuo a postulo of vestri diligo quod tutela ut is quisnam mos nunc suo pugna illae vita. Repleo suus per scientia of thee ut sancutary Quod tribuo ut pacis may insistosuus usquequaque-"
At that moment, in the middle of his incantation, he was cut of by a loud crash of thunder. He felt as if he was struck on the side of his head and fell to the ground grasping his wand in one hand and his head in the other. Looking up, he saw that Stephanie was also on the ground and across from them, there was a rather large cloud forming in the center. He tried to reach out and he heard Stephanie speak. His vision began to get hazy and he knew that something was wrong.
A loud voice boomed over the rest of the circle. “We are the Great Spirits of the World. Here in this circle we have been called and come forth.” The sudden flapping of large wings could be seen and through the haze of smoke, Drew saw a large raven. As Drew stared, he saw that the raven was looking directly at Stephanie who was on the ground looking up in a mixture of fear and wonder.
The giant raven opened its mouth and spoke once more. “Called we here to this Circle round. What will you have of us?” Stephanie looked at Drew who was trying to open his mouth to warn her, but instead, he saw the fear melt away from her.
“I, Stephanie Dupree, have called you forth in this, my Rite of Passage.”
The raven regarded her with a curious eye. Stephanie stood up and her hands were at her sides as she looked up into the raven’s impenetrable gaze. They stared each other down until the raven finally spoke aloud.
“Small child who has come before us, have you a gift to spare unto us to show your coming of age?” As the raven spoke, Stephanie nodded fiercely and pulled something out of her blouse that Drew could not see. She offered it up and then the raven cawed loudly.
“Offered to us is a most generous gift. We shall take what has been given. Is there anything else to be said?”
Drew tried to reach out to stop her, thinking that something had gone wrong. He knew it had to be because of the full moon that shone above them and their working. He wanted to stop her from offering anything that might be too much. He was furious with himself for agreeing to this. The energies from the Otherworld were obviously too much for them to handle by themselves. Drew tried to scream a warning to the girl, but as he opened his mouth, he felt a force slam into him and the surrounding area went silent and dark.
When Drew woke up he was being cradled in the arms of Stephanie whose hair was in disarray and not much else. She looked at him and then sighed. "Thank gods that you are awake. I thought I was going to have to leave you here; and after I promised you patronage too!"
Drew looked around and noticed that it was almost daytime. Slumping in her lap, he took a rattled breath and then struggled to pull his watch up to his face.
"It's almost 6:45 in the morning." Drew groaned. He was going to be late for work this morning.
"You're kidding me right?" He gasped for a breath as he tired to rise and his whole head seemed to swim and he fell back into Stephanie’s arms.
"You got a pretty nasty bump to the head, although I am not sure how." Drew wanted to tell her it was because of the fact that they preformed a dangerous magick on the night of the full moon, but he decided to keep his mouth shut for the moment.
"Did the Rite go alright?"
Stephanie smiled rather slightly and then broke out into a grin. "Yes it did." She flexed her fingers and a small spark seemed to jump from one finger to another.
Drew rolled his eyes and then said, "Show off." Stephanie giggled again.
A sudden notion came across Drew and he looked at Stephanie. "By the way, how old are you?"
The girl smiled sweetly and then said, "I just turned sixteen." Drew groaned again. She wasn't supposed to have a rite of passage done until she was eighteen. Oh well, he didn't care, he was going to have a patron that was younger than him.
"One thing that you should know as my patron," Drew said as he sighed.
"What's that?" Stephanie looked at him quizzically.
"I am never working on the night of a Full Moon ever again."
Stephanie simply giggled.