It’s March, and that means that the story of Ettie and Roman continues in THE MAIL-ORDER WITCH serial, featuring three episodes in addition to the pilot. Think of it as one season of a TV show…with a pilot episode, episode 1, episode 2, and episode 3. These are traditional paranormal cozy mysteries where the whodunit isn’t solved completely until Episode 3.
If readers love this, I’d be happy to write and release a new season every year.
For now, these episodes are available exclusively in the Magic Underground Anthologies, starting with Hidden Magic, but this will change as the year goes on. To find out about their current availability, click HERE. The pilot episode is available for free.
Here are some teasers:
EPISODE 1: Try kicking off your brand-spankin’ new magic shop in a town prejudice against witches. If that wasn’t enough, the children in town are growing tails, and this time, it’s not Ettie’s fault…at least, she doesn’t think it is.
EPISODE 2: As a newlywed couple, can’t Ettie and Roman have any time alone? Since Roman’s father Joe moved in, that answer’s no. And worse of all, her shop is infested with hamsters…and Joe seems a bit suspicious.
EPISODE 3: Curse reversed–easy peasy. Hamster infestation–taken care of. All that’s left is to find out who’s been sabotaging Ettie’s magic shop–bigger problem than expected!
This was another fun series to write. I love Ettie’s craziness and Roman’s calm support of his wife.
7 days until release.
The countdown is starting. 🙂
Thanks for reading!
A sneak peek of chapter 1 of THE MAIL-ORDER WITCH, EPISODE 1 is below.
THE MAIL-ORDER WITCH, EPISODE 1
Roman stood behind me with his hands covering my eyes, making downtown Watersedge disappear into darkness. His unique mountain breeze scent, a combination of our laundry detergent and our bedroom’s open window, tickled my nose while we stumbled along the sidewalk. When he adjusted his hands over my eyes and helped me up a few steps, chimes sang their melody from overhead and a door clicked shut behind me.
“What’s the big surprise?” I asked, trying to peer through Roman’s fingers at the sliver of light.
“Just wait,” he advised with a chuckle.
Having been a mail-order bride, I hadn’t known my husband very long, but I was beginning to identify the little nuances in his voice. The way he almost whispered the words told me he was excited. I could picture the way his sparkling brown eyes would widen and his gorgeous full lips would twist up into a giddy smile, showing off his delicious dimples.
He shuffled me across the room, maneuvering around items I couldn’t see. When my toe stubbed on something heavy and I tripped over something else, Roman kept me vertical—and blindfolded. He was way more coordinated than I could ever hope to be.
“You know how you’ve been struggling to get a job?” Roman carefully turned us around while keeping my eyes tightly covered.
“Yeah. I don’t think this particular town needs a social worker.” At least not one who was a witch. Before the mortals knew of witches, wizards, and magic, it had been as easy for our kind to find work as anyone else. Since magic had been exposed twenty years ago during the Magic Movement, our pickings had become less and less. I had only been a child then, but even I could see that mortals felt threatened by our magic and accepted us only to bring them bits of our powers to use to their advantage. This town that my husband was from was more prejudiced than the rest. It was truly surprising that the architectural firm even hired Roman, knowing he was a warlock.
“Well, I have a solution. Ready?” Roman’s chest pressed flush against my back, allowing me to feel the thumping of his heart, probably matching my own as excited as I was for whatever surprise he had planned.
“Yes! Come on. The anticipation is killing me!”
Roman dropped his hands and my eyes adjusted to the light. I was in a store of some type, though all the shelves were empty and coated in dust. The room wasn’t huge, probably only thirty feet by twenty feet, but with the emptiness, it seemed quite vast.
“What’s this?” I asked. “And what does it have to do with me needing a job?”
“It’s yours!” Roman almost squealed with giddiness.
“It’s mine?” I turned towards him to confirm he was serious. “It’s hard to be a social worker in a shop.”
“Not true,” Roman said. “I think this gives you a great opportunity to help people and break through this town’s prejudice. Imagine this…” He waved his hand in the air, causing a magical display of sparkling lights to form into words that dangled in the emptiness. Ettie’s Enchanted Effects. Add a little magic to your day. “Why do mortals come to witches?”
“Because they want a magic solution to their problems.”
“Exactly,” Roman said.
“But magic isn’t the answer.”
“You and I know that, but they don’t.” He pointed out the front windows to the busy downtown. “They will come here for a quick solution, but while you help them find the perfect enchanted item, you can also help solve their problem. They’ll get a dose of social work from a witch and not be the wiser. And I’ve lived here for quite a few years already. This town is slow to warm up. With your own store, you can prove your value to them.”
“And here I thought that marrying you would take care of that for me.” I playfully batted my eyelashes.
Roman laughed. “I think marrying me might have made your position worse. Mortals here don’t understand our ways. The concept of why I’d marry a mail-order witch is foreign to them. While our magic is dying out because our blood is being diluted with mortal blood, the mortals are flourishing. I’m sure the news that I married a pure-blood witch to keep magic alive in this world spread across all of Watersedge as fast as it flew through the Watersedge Architecture Group.”
“You’re saying that the news spread as fast as my sister Marie devours a pumpkin pie?”
“I don’t think that’s possible.” I dismissed his curious head tilt with a wave of my hand. “Once you meet my sister, you’ll understand.”
I ran my fingers down my purse strap, taking in this shell of a place. What would this old, empty shop look like with various collections of enchanted items on each of the shelves? A stone collection would look nice in the jewelry case, including enchanted pendants. The far wall of shelves would be perfect for a huge talisman collection. Magic books would fill another wall, perfect to help share witch history and tradition with this town. Watersedge had to be curious. Sure, you could get a lot of information on the internet, but there was nothing better than a good book. Before I knew it, my mind had made use of every inch of this place. I could picture myself behind the counter, helping—truly helping—a customer.
“How’d you know I’d like this idea?” I asked. Roman and I had only known each other for three months—since the day he had picked me up at the train station after our enchanted magical union.
“You talk about your aunt’s shop all the time.”
“That’s because I worked there all through my high school days.”
“Well, you light up when you tell stories of all the interesting people with interesting problems that you met there.” He shrugged and his eyes twinkled. “I took a chance.”
“So, this is all mine?”
“This is going to be expensive. I don’t think we can afford it.”
“You don’t have to worry about that. I took out a business loan through work. The owners like to invest in little niche markets like this.”
I took his gentle hand and gave it a light squeeze. “Well, thank you for taking a risk on me.”
Roman smiled, his voice deep and confident. “Oh, you’re not a risk. I have complete faith you’ll make this a success.”
My insides warmed. I lifted on my tiptoes and kissed him in a way that brought tingles throughout my body. He pulled me close, with his fingers lightly pressing into my hips.
“I love you,” I whispered.
I nodded, pressing myself closer to him—if that was even possible.
He chuckled. “I’ll never get tired of you saying that. I love you too.”
Learn how to read the rest of this paranormal cozy mystery novella HERE.