“Not so fast, Lady Edna.” My peacock-blue heels echoed across the tile floor as I left the cover of darkness. “You’re not in charge tonight.”
Edna’s acorn-colored eyes widened. “Elsbeth?”
I grinned and spun in a circle, happy to show off the new version of myself. The greenish-blue leather maxi coat twirled about my magnificent legs. Since regaining my youthful appearance, I had become fond of leather. I had to admit that the color, accented with a cream-colored silk blouse, looked stunning on me. Besides, leather was something I couldn’t have worn as a wrinkled hag. It would have been like putting silk on a shriveled grape—a waste of good fabric. Thanks to Ashmedai, my body had taken on curves that I hadn’t had since my maiden days.
Fiona McClure, another witch of little worth, struggled to her swollen feet. Her tight low-heeled pumps skittered as she stood. “What is the meaning of this? Maeve called—”
“No. I called you all here.” Smiling, I slowly meandered from table to table as confusion shone in their eyes. “It seems that we have a problem. And, I’m here to solve it.”
“And what problem would that be?” The voice full of contempt came from the doorway.
All heads turned as Annabel, with blue-gray hair and eyes to match, hobbled into the room. Her sensible shoes clopped across the floor until she was toe-to-toe with me. I took in her snug polyester pants and ill-fitting sweater worn beneath a cheap-ass wool coat—all in various shades of gray—and laughed. The witch had never been a threat to me.
Hell, none of them had. I saved their ancestors from certain death. I allowed them in this town and let them form the coven. Without me, they’d be no more than a bunch of hacks looking for a home. They should be kissing my ring—I should get myself one just for that purpose.
Annabel’s gin-soaked breath hit me square in the face, but I refused to move. “All of you have forgotten your collective place.”
Wynda, the more humble McClure, held a fleshy hand below her double-chin. “Why would you think that, Elsbeth?”
“Let’s not play games.” I bumped Annabel’s shoulder as I walked past her. The female nearly fell on her plump ass. “Someone had better tell me what Maeve procured from Tavi Mercier. Fail to answer, and the Blue Moon Coven will become a memory.”
I had no problem abolishing the clan. There were other witches that would eagerly take their places.
Cailin shot to her feet. “Elsbeth, I speak for the high priestess, she would tell you that someone has steered you wrong.”
Murmured agreement bounced around the room.
“Test any of us and see that we all only speak the truth,” Cailin added. “The Blue Moon Coven has never had an association with the Merciers.”
“Not entirely true.” A tall woman with platinum hair piled on top of her head entered. “I know what Maeve has done.”
The female’s bright-green eyes locked on to mine.
“Well, well, Rose. Late as usual, but always full of knowledge. Care to enlighten us?” I said.
The elegant witch, with unnaturally high cheekbones for her age, practically floated into the room. Her thin, pink-painted lips curled up. “Elsbeth, you’re the one who seems to have a lapse in memory. You tend to think that you’re the one responsible for all of us in Falls Creek.” She removed her thick, black shawl, draped it over her arm, and placed an age-spotted hand on her bony hip. “You had help from our ancestors and those that the King of Hell brought here. If it weren’t for us, supernaturals would not exist in this country.”
Anger, in the form of raw energy, simmered beneath my skin.
Rose continued, “Don’t fault my sisters. Maeve and I purposely kept them in the dark.”
Gasps went around the room.
“Why?” someone asked.
“The details aren’t necessary,” Rose replied. “I think all of you will agree with us.” Addressing me, she said, “Elsbeth, your time is over in Falls Creek. We appreciate all that you’ve done, but you’re not needed anymore. Move on. Enjoy your eternity elsewhere.”
Eternity elsewhere? There’s a thought for you, witch. You have yet to see all of this country.
The rest of the country didn’t interest me.
I narrowed my eyes and tightened my fists. “How dare you? What makes you think—”
She stepped closer. “The BMC isn’t acting alone. We have the power of Council behind us. Ask any of the members, and they’ll tell you the same thing.” The mature witch raised her eyebrows and smirked. “Pack your shit, bitch, and leave.”
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