The sound of clicking heels across the wooden steps of the front porch was what disturbed the eerie silence that had fallen on the Spellman Mortuary. The afternoon humidity of a very recent rainfall had sprawled in the air creating a light mist that enshrouded the whole environment. Zelda decided, after the ceremony had ended, to stay by the grave of the two Sabrinas for some more minutes hoping for a miracle to happen. But the minutes had become hours. Zelda decided it was high time she went inside the house only when she spotted her sister watching her intently by the window. She was consciously determined not to frustrate Hilda more, at least not these days.
The living room, where the Spellman family had rested after the burial of the two Sabrinas, was lightly dimmed by the moonlight, as the candles had faded and there was no one willing to conjure them. The two sisters were now seating on the green sofa and looking at different spots of the room which felt so empty without the sprightly presence of Sabrina. The once-great matriarch, Zelda Phiona Spellman now looked small and brooding, while trying to restrain herself from the upcoming shuddering sobs. Zelda was contemplating how things had ended up like that- with Sabrina dead and the family mourning her loss. The only person to blame was herself, for trusting the wrong people, for underestimating the stupidities of Sabrina, for not acting on time, for slitting her own nieces’ throat. She was her guardian and she failed utterly in her one and only obligation, to keep Sabrina alive. There must have been a reason, after all, for Edward to trust her only beloved daughter to Lilith. If she were under Liliths’ protection, maybe she would have been safe now, who knows?
The sound of pots and the smell of something burning was what brought the two sisters back to reality. Dr. Cee showed up from the door and with a forced smile: “Girls, I made some toasts. We all need something in our stomachs. Shall we eat?” Hilda shook lightly the hand of her sister, with pleading eyes: “Shall we Zelds?... Please?” Zelda looked at her sister nodding with an empty look while vibrating a worrisome stillness. She, then, stood up and they all went to the kitchen where Ambrose was already sitting in one of the chairs looking utterly confused, his eyes glued to the chair where Sabrina used to sit. Zelda thought all the times they had already started dinner, for Sabrina to show up late. After all, punctuation was not a habit of hers. Maybe, after all, she would show up later. It was not an infrequent event for her to lose time when she was with her friends, or maybe she was trying to cover up one of her new imbecilic actions that may have occurred. But Ambroses’ little sobs displayed the harsh truth to Zelda while he got up running out of the kitchen towards his room. After the three of them tried to eat at least some bites of the toasts that Dr. Cee had made- though even one little bite felt too difficult to swallow- they withdrew to their rooms in need of some privacy to mourn and rest from this hectic day.
Zelda now was laying on her bed, without minding to change her clothes to a nightgown -something rather unusual- and her makeup soaked. Hilda, sitting on the edge of the bed, refused to leave her alone as she was not trusting her sisters’ sanity. She had estimated that by night Zelda would have drunk herself to sleep. Wrong guess. She was wide awake, but she was completely yielded and passive. And that is what worried her more. Of course, she was also totally heartbroken by Sabrinas’ death, but she could not bear seeing her sister in such a state. Despondent and lost. It looked like she had surrendered herself to destiny. And she could not believe how fast her sister had accepted Sabrinas’ death. It was hours ago that they had buried her so her soul may have not crossed the Paths yet. There was little time if they were to try to resurrect her once more.
Gathering all the courage she had in her deposit “Zelds, I think there must be a way to bring Sabrina back, we just have to think…” And added hesitantly “And act quickly”
Zelda still lay in her bed and had no expression. Hilda took it upon herself and continued “Zelds, you have brought me back to life multiple times. Do not shout, I’m not stupid… I know we tried once with Sabrina and it did not work but…”
Zelda turned toward her sister with teary eyes “I’m sorry sister. As much as I want her to be alive I know it won’t happen. I did everything I could and I…”
“Zelds, no! I did not say that it was your fault and I know that you tried so hard. I just… I.. Gosh.. Zelda, we are witches, for Satan’s sake! We are not mere mortals who accept their destiny and live with it. At least, I am not going to do that this time. Not in this case. We must try. And we must bring her back, Zelds. I cannot do it alone.”
Zelda was looking at her half-convinced “What do you have in your mind, then?”
“Well, we know Hecate likes..
“Do not name that woman again!” Zelda said abruptly “She was the one who betrayed us, Hilda! I called on her multiple times. I spent nights calling on her name and days reading the next summon. And she never answered!” She added bitterly “Sometimes I think she doesn’t even exist”
“Of course, she exists. She is the mother of witches and I have to remind you she was the one who resurrected me the last time.”
“I know that far better than you sister” and it was the first time Hilda got excited with one of her many discourteous replies “but I do not think she has a bodily form, she is a spirit, a soul or a “pneuma” who may send signs to her beloved worshippers. And do not forget not only we have very recently started worshipping her, but also because of a need. A need, a request that is completed and now out of necessity we own her, and we must worship her. But we have not gained her trust yet. I have strong indications to think that she does not even listen to our prayers.”
“But I don’t understand. We pray to her, we dedicated our Coven to her name. What else does she want?
“What does she want? She wants to see in practice our dedication. She resurrected you. And what did we do to please her back? Except the prayers and the sacrifices. Nothing actual, nothing pragmatical.”
“But we didn’t have the time to. And she didn’t put any quest to us. Then, we can call on Lilith. She is our safest choice.”
After some minutes of pause “I don’t trust her, Hildie.”
“I don’t either. But she was at the funeral and she did look, sad. She may have ulterior motives but, in the end, she stood beside us and you also helped her when she was in need. I also think she has a gentle soul” Zelda looked baffled to her sister “Just my opinion, Zelds!”
The truth was that Zelda trusted neither Lilith or her powers. Needless to say, she was the Queen of Hell but at the moment, as of the latest news, she had to defeat her misogynist enemies and also prove she was capable of ruling Hell. Something that required time, determination and power. She knew she was the first woman and the first witch and having lived centuries, probably, she was the wisest among men and women. But she was well known, as Mary Wardwell, for her manipulative and calculative nature and, as a Queen of Hell, for her barbarical and merciless treatment of all the residents of Hell and Earth. She was, definitely, not a safe choice.
On top of that, a rather significant point was that she had not seen Lilith casting such a spell to correspond with her newly acquired position, that of a Queen. It was highly doubtful, even if she could resurrect Sabrina, that she would accept to do so.
After some minutes of silent reflection and Hilda having understood that Lilith would be the last option, she hesitantly added “And… What about Marie?” Fearing a harsh comeback, she stopped waiting for a reaction from Zelda.
Zelda looked at her sister dead in the eyes “What about her?”
“Well, you know… she is… she deals with dead people and she is not a goddess, but nonetheless a rather strong being of the Underworld. And she was very fond of you so maybe if we talked to her, we may find a solution.”
Zelda looking distracted was thinking about Marie. How on earth could not she understand her manly presence. She was deceived and had made a promise to herself to never think of her or him again. Calling him now would mean reneging her promise. Asking help from someone who used her as a mean to not achieve his goals but just to have fun. It would be such a degrading nadir. But he did bring back Vinegar Tom. Baron was the safest choice.
“Hilda, we are calling the Baron Samedie”.