It’s been a while, but I decided to give you guys a little sample of my writing! Here is my most recent and polished first chapter of THE THING IN THE WIND, my horror novel I have been querying. Hope you guys enjoy it, and if you do, please like and comment, thank you so much 🙂
Playing with fire always ends with a price.
Becca set up black candles in a circle on Rosaleen and Shae’s dorm floor. She lit each one, creating blue flames. Shae watched, studying the flames waving in the air and sharply, panic filled inside her. The second Becca got up and turned off the lights, that was it. Shae had left.
Shae could feel it ending in fire. She disliked the darkness: spells, ghost hunting, Ouija boards, anything seeking the other sides. But on the other hand, those type of things were Rosaleen and Becca’s enjoyment. Doing things which included the darkness, gave the two of them a weird, pleasurable thrill. They had gone ghost hunting and played with Ouija boards during sleepovers all throughout their younger days, and they waited for something to happen, but nothing odd ever did. Now a spell? Neither of them had ever done it, even though witchcraft interested them massively.
Becca noticed Shae leave and said, “Looks like you won’t need your little nerd toy, Rose. When you laid that bomb on me before, you made me totally forget about this . . . If you do this, you won’t need her as a cover up. So, you can ditch the little rat now.”
Rosaleen thought back to earlier. The smile Shae had had on her face when she agreed to go, was filled with so much excitement, Rosaleen couldn’t. “She’s still coming. What if this doesn’t work?”
Becca clamped her hands together and tilted her head to the side. “What? Is Rosaleen becoming a nerd again? Ditch her.”
Rosaleen clenched her jaw. “Okay, if I ditch her, then you can go to this damn carnival yourself, how about that?” She sat down on the floor, ignoring Becca.
Steam rose in Becca’s cheeks, she smirked then sat down next to Rosaleen and placed the book on her lap. As Rosaleen gazed at the book resting on Becca’s lap, she wasn’t sure if she could go through with this. The book was tilted, Tome of Summoning Spells. It looked ancient like it had been around for centuries. It was bound in leather, and the pages were worm-eaten, and stained yellowish brown, the edges ripped and torn. Her heart sped up with worry.
Rosaleen nor Becca were experts on spells. What had possessed Becca to think she was some type of head witch? This type of act was what young teenagers do. Stupid and reckless. This year Rosaleen and Becca had just turned nineteen. They were adults, but neither of them felt like adults. Rosaleen had no clue what she was doing here at college. Her heart still resembled one of a child’s. Any responsibility she wasn’t sure how to handle, she wished she could call up both of her parents and receive the answer, but now, her father was the only one. But dads don’t have every answer, and sometimes a girl needs their mother.
Rosaleen was doing everything on her own here: laundry, cleaning, cooking, and making phone calls. She was doing adult things, nonetheless, inside of her was clueless. No matter how old we are, nobody really knows what the hell we’re doing. The child we once were, never burns out.
But Becca was an actual child. She didn’t have that switch adults have. She couldn’t turn off the button (immaturity) whenever something adult came along. And here, as the two of them were sitting in the dark, surrounded by flaming candles with a dark, spooky spell book on Becca’s lap, Rosaleen’s brain was the only one who could comprehend how this was out of their league.
Rosaleen fought those thoughts aside and teased, “Where the hell did you get that? It looks like you got it from Salem.”
Becca touched the spine of the book, feeling how much age had made it timeworn. “I bought it downtown, at that shop that sells sage and witch stuff.”
With disbelief, Rosaleen’s eyebrows flickered. “Why’d ya go all the way there?”
Becca cocked her head toward Rosaleen. “I quickly went before I came here. I even took the bus-”
“Wow, Becca took the bus,” Rosaleen joshed.
“Shut up! Remember, I don’t have a license. And anyway, I couldn’t get Devon to take me. He would’ve thought I was nuts.”
“It’s okay.” Rosaleen smiled. “Now, I know what took you so long.”
Becca nodded and continued. “I could tell how much you needed this. You’re not the greatest flirt-”
Rosaleen’s face turned beat red. “Hey!”
Becca chuckled. “So, I know how much you like Jack . . . and I invited you in the first place.” She wouldn’t look Rosaleen directly in the eyes. “I owe you.”
Rosaleen quickly fell in awe. She couldn’t believe Becca thought about someone other than herself. Becca had never done many things for Rosaleen. She had given her birthday gifts, Christmas gifts, but she never did something out of kindness; Rosaleen was always the one who did. Rosaleen smiled wide, her face crinkling with unexpected happiness. “So, you think this spell’s going to work? Either of us has studied witchcraft, ya know?”
Becca answered with confidence, “I’ve always wanted to. It can’t be hard. I know what I’m doing.”
“Anyway, maybe this will give you the confidence to realize how hot you really are.” Becca nudged Rosaleen, flicking her eyebrows up and down.
Rosaleen looked away, feeling that heat rising again in her cheeks. Rosaleen had great cheekbones, a big chest, and lovely red hair. Becca had always been jealous of Rosaleen since the moment they met in middle school. She felt insecure around her but never shown it. She had even wanted to dye her hair the same shade of red Rosaleen had, though she didn’t want to be known as a copier. Becca thought Rosaleen was a dime, but in Rosaleen’s mind, a dime was not what she was. On the other hand, Becca was no dime. Her face was too round and plain, and her breasts were small and oddly shaped. She had pretty hazel eyes, and her hair was straight, slick, and as black as a starless sky. It was her I don’t give a damn attitude, playfulness, and outspokenness she used to win guys’ attention.
Becca opened up the book. Quickly, a swarm of dust clung to the air. Becca coughed as some of it went straight into her lungs. Dust ran up into Rosaleen’s nose, tickling it, and she blew it out.
“Wow, this thing really is ancient,” Rosaleen said, coughing.
“Yeah, isn’t it amazing?” Becca awed, eyeing the pages astonished.
Now Becca began skimming through it. A chill crawled up Rosaleen’s spine as she saw it was all written in a different language. A language she had never seen before. Symbols were printed after some of the letters, giving the language a much darker tone.
“It’s not written in English. How are we going to be able to do this?” Rosaleen asked bewildered.
“Don’t worry, the hot guy who sold it to me told me the language.”
“Hot guy, Becca? What about Devon?”
Becca sighed, “I can still think other guys are hot, whether I have a boyfriend or not . . . He really was. He had dark sexy hair and you know how much I love that . . . and underneath his clear shirt he was wearing I could see a bunch of tattoos he was trying to hide.”
Rosaleen rolled her eyes and then gave Becca a playful smile. “But I still don’t understand, what if we say the words incorrectly?”
Becca ignored her, gasped with excitement, and stopped on a page. “This is it!”
Narrowing her eyes, Rosaleen examined the page. Rosaleen’s eyes began to water. Within the light the candle lights were given, it looked as if dark figures were moving and dancing on the page. Rosaleen blinked and then they were gone. She swallowed and asked, “How do you know that’s the right one?”
“The hot guy told me.”
Rosaleen rolled her eyes again.
Becca went on. “I told him, I’m looking for a spell to make someone fall in love . . . it’s for a friend.”
“I’m sure he looked at you like you were crazy.”
“Nah, you should see that store. It’s filled with way weirder stuff than that. But whatever, I think he liked me anyway . . . So, he showed me this book and this exact page.”
“Okaaay,” Rosaleen dragged out, “but this doesn’t solve us pronouncing the words in the spell correctly.”
“The hot guy-”
Rosaleen interrupted, “I get it, Becca! He’s hot!”
Becca laughed and then said, “He gave me this website to go on, so I went on it on my phone, and it filled me with chills. Good chills, though . . . So, I listened to the translation and tried pronouncing it in my head on the bus back home, and it sounded pretty awesome.” Becca grinned.
Rosaleen breathed uneasily. Becca noticed and placed her palm on top of Rosaleen’s hand. “Just trust me, Rose.”
Rosaleen felt heat rising off Becca’s palm, warming her. She was silent for a bit before she nodded and put her trust in the one person, she thought she could with her entire life.
“Okay, Rose, give me your hand,” Becca instructed.
“What?” Rosaleen asked confused.
“Just give me your hand!” Becca groaned.
Rosaleen hesitated. Becca grabbed Rosaleen’s hand without her say, and immediately Rosaleen could feel a sharp pain erupting through her forefinger. Becca had cut it with a small knife. Rosaleen screamed out as blood oozed out, dripping to the base of her forefinger.
Rosaleen pulled her hand away, shouting, “What that hell! Why’d you do that!” Where the hell did that knife even come from, Rosaleen thought, and she wasn’t surprised Becca had even had one.
“It needs to be done, ” Becca spoke with no emotion. Then, Becca did the same. She cut the top of her forefinger, and as blood ran down her finger, Rosaleen could see no pain upon her face. No scream. It looked as if she was enjoying it. Rosaleen got up and started to look in the dark for something to stop the bleeding up till Becca shouted, “No, don’t do that! It needs your blood! Bring it over here!”
Fear shot down Rosaleen’s spine. Blood? Why does it need blood? Adding blood makes it seem like black magic. “Why?” Rosaleen asked.
“The guy told me we needed to do this, as well as the candles.” Becca lied about the cutting. “Okay, now pour some on the spell,” she ordered.
“What?” Rosaleen said disbelieved.
Becca shouted louder, “Just do it!”
Rosaleen’s inner consciousness was trying to speak out, telling her this was not right, but Becca’s domineering ways got Rosaleen to listen to Becca instead. Rosaleen poured her blood on the spell.
“Don’t let it touch the letters, though,” Becca ordered, sharply.
Rosaleen dripped a small amount of her blood at the bottom of the page. Becca did the same, and now their blood attached together like chains. As the both of them were bandaging their fingers, the worry in Rosaleen’s throat worsened. This was blood to blood. “Is this all in the spell?” Rosaleen asked.
“Yeah, it says we needed to do that.” Becca’s voice wobbled this time as she spoke.
“I know you’re lying!” Rosaleen yelled.
Becca hissed, “Okay, I am! Why does it matter!”
Rosaleen shifted away from Becca and didn’t respond. Once again, Becca had dominated Rosaleen. Still, Rosaleen hadn’t found the courage. And this side of Becca was utterly satanic.
Becca lowered her voice. “This is definitely gonna make it work. In the movies and stuff, they always add their blood.”
Rosaleen stayed quiet.
Becca straightened her back and sat up straight. “Time to begin.”
Rosaleen and Becca held hands as they set out to begin. The room danced with absolute silence. The candles flamed in the dark room. Rosaleen’s pulse quickened as well as Becca’s, although Becca’s wasn’t because of fear it was from adrenaline.
“Just repeat after me, and then we’ll keep repeating it till we get it right,” Becca ordered.
Rosaleen nodded, agreeing on command, and grabbed Becca’s hand tighter. They breathed in deeply, their mouths opened, and then they began.
The words they spoke were a strange foreign calligraphy that wasn’t familiar to known human languages with what seemed to be a mix of hieroglyphs that showed rudimentary details of familiar things like people, but with odd wings, tails, and even horns attached to their heads. A bad tasted filled their mouths once they shouted it out the first time. They ignored the strong taste staying on their tongues and went on for the second time.
They repeated the spell over and over again until Rosaleen got the hang of it. And by the fourth time, their hearts were hammering rapidly against their chest, freezing air bristling against their skin. Rosaleen no longer felt this was wrong. She no longer felt this could be dark. She felt that amazing adrenaline Becca had felt from the very beginning. It was like a wave of power tilted over her, giving her this confidence, she never thought she could have. She was the magic. She was Becca. And as they chanted out the last verse for as long and as hard as they could the spell finally came to its end.
Rosaleen and Becca sat still for a moment, catching their breaths, lowering down their excited pulses. They smiled at each other as pleasurable goosebumps ran down their bodies. But those smiles flattened once the candles had blown out all at once on their own. The room went pitch black. They couldn’t see a damn thing.
Rosaleen let go of Becca’s hand, startled, and asked, “Did you do that, Becca?”
Before Becca had answered, the floor shook and shook like an earthquake. And as the two felt the floor, moving their bottoms, lifting them up, they shot up from the floor, and looked around, panicking.
“What the hell’s going on?” Rosaleen shouted, her eyes blazing with terror.
The candles flipped over. The book bounced up and down. Rosaleen and Becca held onto Rosaleen’s bed for support. And just before items had fallen from the wall, the shaking abruptly stopped.
The two balanced themselves, silent with fear, confusion, and wonder. Rosaleen, who was shaking, squinting all around in the utter dark, hoped it wouldn’t start up again. And in that still fearful moment, something blew through the room. An intense hot puff of air slit on their faces, heating up their skin as if they were sitting directly by a campfire, burning them for a split second until it was gone.
And what Rosaleen and Becca didn’t know then at that moment, panic-stricken to their core, something obscure attached itself to the air.
❤ T. A. Nelson
I’m a writer who’s working on books and is in the query trenches, follow me on here as well as on Twitter @WriterInHorror