Fifteen – 09

[This post is from Hecate’s point of view.]

Carolyn put her arm around Hecate’s shoulders as they slipped out of the Shakespeare garden and moved around the hedgerows toward the path down the hill to where the barrow stood. Torches flickered weakly at the corners of the hallowed ground. Hecate swallowed.

“I should have brought something to replace those,” she said softly. “They’re going to go out soon, I think.”

“They’ve burned for so long,” Carolyn said, following her gaze. “Someone must have refilled the torches or something since we set them.”

“Probably,” Hecate murmured, then shivered slightly, drawing her sweatshirt tight. It wasn’t even that cold, but a sudden chill worked its way down her spine. “What do you want to bet no one will own up to being the one doing it, though?”

Carolyn choked on a laugh. “I am not taking that bet. I know better.”

Hecate smiled at her sidelong before her attention drifted back to the barrow. She could see a mist slowly starting to gather there and her breath caught in her throat. “Carolyn,” she whispered. “Are you seeing this?”

Carolyn only nodded, staring down toward the grass where there hadn’t been a mist a few minutes before.

“Shit,” Hecate breathed, slipping out from under Carolyn’s arm. She started to move faster, her skin puckering, the hairs on the back of her neck standing on end and goosebumps rising all along her limbs. There was a crackle of something in the air, something she couldn’t quite identify but knew in her gut she knew.

“Are you feeling this?” Carolyn asked her, moving fast to keep up.

“Yes,” Hecate said, her throat almost too tight to get the words out. Her heart felt like it had lodged somewhere in her throat. “And I’m not sure I like it.”

“You’re more optimistic than I am,” Carolyn said. “I know I don’t like it.”

They were halfway down the hill when the keening began.

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