A Plague of Spells and Hexes


Chapter 1

"I'm not doing this," I said to my sister. I looked around the empty bar. The windows were blown out. The ceiling was caved in, and the floor was ruptured in several places.

It’d probably been built at the turn of the last century, with few updates since then. From the dust and the grime, it hadn’t been cleaned since then either.

The place smelled like rotten trash and sewer. The stench entered my nose, choking me. I put a hand over my mouth and nose, but it did no good. The scent was now buried in my skin.

Xeyn ran a hand through her hair. Like my own, it was purple with orange tips. She wore hers spiked up, though. That wasn’t really my style. I preferred mine short, just barely reaching my neck. Xeyn rocked back on her heels and smiled. "I want it, Driz.”

I rolled my eyes upward. Xeyn was my older sister. She was the only girl my parents had and was used to having her way.

Me and my best friend Red owned Arched Designs together. One of the many services we offered was architecture. Though we did a lot more than that.

Since our world was ripe with wreckers, or what some called witches, we needed to protect our clients from sneaky hexes being inserted into everything from contracts to the building materials.

We offered a fully-fledged hexing protection plan. It covered your house, vehicles, business, everything. We created hexes and spells, but we also broke them and provided protection against them.

Around here, most judged you on how well you could protect your clients and staff. Red and I had suffered a blow in that department recently. Fifteen of our employees had been murdered by a madman before we could save them.

My anger about that entire situation made the tables in the bar shake, scooting across the floor. My telekinesis power often acted up when I was emotional.

Red and I saw our staff as family. To have fifteen of them slaughtered in front of us by a madman wanting revenge had been devastating.

Six months later, we were still picking up the pieces from that horrific event.

“And then everything would be perfect.”

What? My head jerked up. Xeyn had been rambling on about something, but I hadn’t heard her. “It’s a project the three of us can do together.”

The three of who? She must have seen my confusion because she sighed and swatted my arm. “You, me, and Trick. Come on, Driz. Keep up. We can own this place together. All three of our names will be on the deed.”

I looked around the hollowed-out bar. “I don’t know shit about running a club, Xeyn. None of us do.”

She kicked a broken chair leg out of her way. It skidded across the floor and joined a few more. “We all know how to run a business, though. Come on, Driz. Don’t turn me down. I need you to talk to Trick. You know how he is.”

I looked at the mountains of dust covering everything from the shattered bar to the ceiling and floor. My older brother Trick would never step foot in a place like this.

The only place he got his hands dirty was the kitchen. Trick was the oldest of the three of us. Xeyn was a year behind him, and I was a year after her.

Trick was a chef. He had restaurants on three different worlds. He was the stuck-up type and rarely did anything if it wasn’t for himself. I couldn’t see him getting involved in this.

Xeyn smiled and looked around. She only stood five-six, so Trick and I had always towered over her. Xeyn was slim, but boy could she pack a punch.

Growing up, she’d been the toughest of the three of us. Most of the kids never bothered Trick or myself because they were scared our sister would beat them up!

I loved my sister a lot. I’d do anything for her. But this…

“Trick will cook!” she said, eyes dancing like she was imagining how great this would be. “I’ll bring in my specialty liquor and wines. You’ll handle all the technical stuff. You and Red can have this place ready in no time.”

I let out a sigh. My sister made both liquor and wine. She’d built both companies from the ground up. In just a few short years and with nothing but hard work and determination, her companies had become the seventh biggest for wine, fifth for liquor. I was very proud of her, but I didn’t know about this new idea of hers.

My eyes roamed over the club. I ran a hand under my chin. It actually wouldn’t take much to get this place in shape if my company took over the restoration project. I’d have to talk to Red first, get his approval.

Red and I owned Arched Designs together. I couldn’t make a decision like this without him.

“We’ll all have equal parts.” Xeyn walked onto the dance floor. “Each of us will own an equal share.”

I felt my resolve weaken. “Trick will never agree to this.”

She ran her hand across a dusty table. “I’ll draw up an extensive business proposal. By the time I’m done showing him all the benefits and pros, he’ll be begging to sign.”

My phone buzzed, letting me know I needed to haul ass. I had a meeting with a client that could bring in thirty million for one project alone. That was a big contract.

We need this to even things out a bit. Business was okay, but recently we’d created a rampage hex that’d destroyed another business.

They’d attacked us first. Fifteen of our employees had been killed from that incident. Still, a few of our big-named clients had left us.

 “Come here.” I wrapped my arms around Xeyn, giving her a kiss on the cheek. “We’ll talk about it later, okay.”

Our new client had rented out a space to meet. I pulled up and cut the engine on my car. The building was large, with at least five floors. I adjusted my briefcase. This client was being mad sketchy. They refused to come to our office and would only give the name Tierce.

I couldn’t find out anything about them online, so I’d come prepared with a few rumbles and hexes in case things went sideways. When I exited my car, I saw Red was already in the parking lot, waiting.

I smiled and waved. Red rolled his eyes, an annoyed look on his face. Red had been my best friend since we were teenagers. He wasn’t a wrecker or witch like those in my family, but he had the power of superspeed and superstrength. 

He could probably do ten laps around the world in a few seconds. Like me, Red was five-feet-eight, with a muscular build. If it wasn’t for his fiery red hair and different style of dress, people would probably get us mixed up.

We couldn’t be more different. Unlike his red hair, mine was purple with orange tips. Also, Red was the type who partied all night long, grabbing a different lover every time the hour changed.

I cocked my head to the side. Except for the last six months he’d been with the same guy, Thunder, a street hustler.

Red grabbed me by the arm. “Get your head in the game. We’re not the only company here. Your boyfriend just went inside.”

My brows furrowed. Tix was here? Tix Ander owned Ander Enterprises, the company right beside ours. He and I had been in a sort of relationship for the past six months.

Well, longer than that if you counted all the times we’d eaten dinner together and never sat at the same table or spoke to each other.

Things were good between us. At least I thought so. Though I didn’t know he’d be here today. To be fair, I hadn’t told him I’d be here either.

We didn’t talk much about work. We owned rival companies, so things could get sticky if we started letting work secrets slip.

Which was fine with me. I liked keeping our business and personal life separate. It made things less murky.

Red opened the door for me, and I walked inside the building. “I’ve counted at least three other companies,” he said, coming in behind me.

I looked around the high ceilings and carpeted floors. This place was swank, classy. “We could all be here for different clients.”

I had researched this building. It held ten conference rooms and three events centers.

Red walked to the door numbered one-hundred-eight. “Let’s just go inside.”

The room held six tables with six chairs under each table. Up front was a large whiteboard, along with a TV mounted to the wall. The walls were brown, accented with a darker brown. The carpet was brown as well.

Pictures of motivational sayings and witty repertoire hung on the walls. Though this was a conference room, it still felt intimate, private.

At five of the tables were name tags. Arched Designs was the last table. Red and I both took our seats. I looked for Tix. Anders Enterprises was the third table.

I ran a hand through my hair, my adrenaline pumping. I guessed we had some competition for the account. I loved a good challenge.

Tix turned around. His golden eyes caught my green ones. My breath hitched. Sometimes his natural good looks caught me off guard. Tix stood six-feet-two and had muscles for days. I smiled. Boy did that come in handy in the bedroom.

Tix was a top hexer. His arms were filled with tattoos, signs, and sigils. Tix was good at what he did. He’d also helped me rediscover my wrecker powers. I’d buried them years ago, relying only on my telekinesis.

As a child, I’d been a prodigy, more powerful than most of the adults around me. But, after one horrific event, I’d shut off my wrecker powers, vowing to never do another rumble or hex.

Tix had helped me work through the pain. He’d made me realize that being a witch, a wrecker, was a part of who I was.

He nodded curtly at me, and I nodded back. We’d talk later. For now, he was the competition.

I looked around the room. Seems like four other companies were here. I wondered about this Tierce. Why had they brought five other companies here today? A thread of apprehension ran through me. What was really going on here?

After ten more minutes, a man and woman who looked to be in their sixties walked into the room. They had tan skin and their demeanors told me they were used to being in charge.

They walked with confidence and authority to the front of the room. The woman was the first to speak. Her voice was low but filled with power. “I need your help in stopping the end of the world.”

 Buy, A Plague of Spells and Hexes