Thursday, December 31, 2015

Note to Newcomers

The Nate and Seth series is a continuing story that includes challenge prompts. To read them in chronological order, click on the Nate and Seth Series page and follow the links. I hope you enjoy!

ETA: The story is now complete, so if you've been waiting for us to finish, we have.

Update: The boys were apparently not done with us, nor we with them, so there's a new chapter and tab: Nate and Seth vol. 2

Thursday, June 18, 2015

The Rout of the Season

Daniel in exquisite style –
cut coat, silk vest, breeches mama called
unseemly –
reaches out an elegant hand,
never soft,
always ready,
a blatant invitation
to dance.

Palm down, chin up –
I know what they said of me,
vowed to embrace it –
my fingers brush his
with memory and promise
as I glide,
the height of fashion,
the envy glassy-eyed ladies,
in a decadent waltz.

Musicians tremble
as we slowly promenade
past the fine, down-slumping citizens
who failed to recognize
the cost of a social slight.

We allow the orchestra to flee,
then bar the doors
and contemplate
the remaining few.

Monday, June 15, 2015

Tit for Tat

“Exquisite,” the politician had whispered, hand trailing down my sweat-slicked flank.

I’d said the same of his cocaine, ignoring his slow slide to the floor. He’d had too much – wine, powder, me. I’d dressed, stepped over his body, and left, assured the hotel cameras were disabled.

“So,” Belial asked, “which of those poisoned him?”

I smiled at the fallen angel. “Trade secrets.”

“You’ve no honor left to cloak yourself in such conceit.”

“Want me to dial up Satan? What would that cost you? Better to just give me my promised reward.”

He paled, then began my transformation into addiction-free addict.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Finding the Up Side

The novelty of being honest with my brother held. “Yes, I can read my mother’s grimoire.”

Nate swore a blue streak.

I contemplated breaking the rest of the news, but at a certain point, truth becomes a death wish. I couldn’t tell him an army of witches saw lines being drawn and decided to form up behind me – unless I wanted him to shoot me. Not even my magic can stop a bullet.

“You should be glad.”

He choked.

I turned the laptop to show him the loom symbol. “Turns out a spell to focus intent works with any technology.”

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Saturday, April 25, 2015

Whip Smart

I settled on telling Nate the truth, or some stripe of it. “You recall me stepping on ley lines?”

“I was busy being possessed at the time, but yeah.”

“It strengthened my magic, a little too much. I couldn’t always control the surges.”

His look was as flat as psych ward monitors, recording but revealing nothing.

“I found a woman who knew my mother.” And twelve more. “It took a while, but I’m fine now.”

It was best he not know of the coven’s belief I was their prophesied savior.

“Did it involve deciphering your mother’s spellbook?”

He remembered. Damn.

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Testing the Faith

By Colleen Foley

Belief is a strange thing. I never wanted to believe in monsters. I have always needed to believe in my brother. And now I wasn’t sure I should. I was about to find out.

Seth sat at the rickety card table in what passed for the kitchenette of our hotel room, his face bathed in light from the laptop monitor and the hotel’s horrific red and green striped neon sign, blinking just outside the window.

Between all that and his shorn head, I barely recognized him. That seemed both appropriate and horrifying.

“So Salem, about that new mojo of yours.”

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Saturday, April 18, 2015

Following Orders

According to his lingering perusal, the politician liked my figure. I cast a baleful glare at the damned angel behind me. His master had slipped away, unnaturally. If you want the Number of the Beast, it’s on my phone, but you won’t like it when he answers.

The rich always have excellent drugs. I lured the politician to his room by making him think it was his idea – and that he’d get into my non-existent panties.

It took so little to help him overdose, I almost felt bad, but a job is a job, and I can’t quit this one.

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A Work In Progress

[or what Nate did on his time off]

By Colleen Foley

Kaia was not sated. But for now I was sweaty, bloody, and on my knees before her.

Her chocolate silk accent washed over me like balm, soothing welts on my back and mind.

“You, Nate, are but one thread on a loom. Every thread that interweaves with yours touches your life in some way. Your brother, your uncle, friends long dead and even people and …things you have yet to meet. Some of that tale can be seen by such a one as me. The tapestry you are weaving is dark, indeed.

She gestured to the dish of food.

“Eat.”

Square One

Nate frowned. “Does the loom symbol mean anything to you?”

I shook my head. “There’s a motel down the road. Let’s get you settled with drugs for your head. I’ll do research.”

“So, you hunt me down like a beast with a scent, and figure everything’s back to normal?”

“I thought you’d be done sulking. It’s not like I had it any easier than you on our last…adventure.”

He glared. “Fine, but you’ll tell me how you ended up with enough mojo to deflect whatever that was on the road.”

I had twenty miles to figure out a decent lie.

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Saturday, April 04, 2015

A Work In Progress

[or what Nate did on his time off]

By Colleen Foley

Kaia was not sated. But for now I was sweaty, bloody, and on my knees before her.

Her chocolate silk accent washed over me like balm, soothing welts on my back and mind.

“You, Nate, are but one thread on a loom. Every thread that interweaves with yours touches your life in some way. Your brother, your uncle, friends long dead and even people and …things you have yet to meet. Some of that tale can be seen by such a one as me. The tapestry you are weaving is dark, indeed.

She gestured to the dish of food.

“Eat.”

Thursday, April 02, 2015

Slow Your Roll

By Colleen Foley

The next small town boasted only six streets, but it had a garage and a diner. The mechanic checked the dents in my bumper.

“1970 Dodge Charger. Four door! They got popular again after them Vin Diesel movies come out. Now, tell yer tale. What happened?”

Seth explained, leaving out the weirdness.

“So….you Tokyo drifted into a snow bank?”

One dirty look and two hundred dollars later, we were sitting in the Deep Dish Diner.

“Listen, Nate. Right before the crash, a small patch of frost formed on the windshield…some weird symbol. Looked like cloth on a loom”.

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Dark Son Rising

[or what Seth did on his time off]

She knelt, head down, pink hair falling to brush the cold stone floor. If asked, she would spin a tale about trying to help me or not understanding what the symbols woven into the fabric meant. She would beg me to destroy the loom as proof of her fealty.

I hadn’t given her leave to speak.

Herbs added to the dish sent smoke curling heavenward. She looked up, eyes widening at the scent.

“Now,” I said, “who am I?”

“First of Many,” she whispered.

“And?”

“I am yours to command.”

“Not yet.”

She shook. “But soon.”

“Yes. So, please me.”

Monday, March 16, 2015

Opening Gambit

Nate wrenched the door open, lunatic glint in his eye.

I held him back. “I should drive.”

“No dice.”

“Then let me clean your wound, so it doesn’t blind you.”

I knew that would do the trick. He flinched at the idea of me handling his blood. I wouldn’t keep it without asking, but he’d never trust me not to. That might have stung, once, but blood is power, especially in the hands of a witch. He’d seen my creations.

He packed a snowball, wrapped it in an old shirt – mine, of course – and climbed into the back seat, grumbling.

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Stone Cold Sober


by Colleen Foley

I staggered a bit as I followed Seth to the edge of the road.

“The lunatic who did this is so gonna die.”

“Wasn’t a person, Nate. It was a thought form, a magical creation. It was never alive, really, and it’s gone now. But we have to go.”

“What? I can’t even…wait, go where? Dude, look at my car!”

“The car will start. I promise. Look, this was a dice roll. Whoever did it hoped to catch us off guard and I screwed them on it. Someone’s out for us. We have to keep moving.”

Son of a bitch.

____________

Friday, March 06, 2015

Cold and Broken

Habit had part of my brain assessing the wreck. The rest contemplated what could fling a ton of metal around like a toy. Identification was key to survival.

So was warmth. I pulled on fur-lined gloves, a wicked indulgence, and cursed my newly shorn head.

The magic was old, powerful, laced with pain. It hadn’t been personal, though. I could sense when someone was using bits of me in spells, knowledge that had come with guaranteed damnation. But that was always a given.

Nate emerged, creaking like his car. “Whatever did this is dead.”

“Yes,” I said, “it probably is.”

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What next?

by Colleen Foley

“Nate. Nate!”

I opened my eyes, caught sight of the windshield. It was shattered, the jagged edges furred with blood and snow.

“Shit. What…did we hit something?”

I tried turning the key. Nothing. Seth was already shrugging out of his seatbelt .

“No, something tried to hit us. Something not physical. And please don’t wish me into eternal damnation, but I spelled us out of its way, which is the only reason we’re not dead. Also, I’m really, really, sorry about your car. I’ll be right back.”

With that, he got out of the car and headed toward the road.

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