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Cynthia Borris

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By Cynthia Borris
Thursday, October 16, 2003

Rated "G" by the Author.

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Beyond the ads, beyond the sales, lies the truth.


"Double, double, toil and trouble, fire burn and cauldron bubble." Kathryn Ferguson cackled and swirled a crooked finger, casting a fake spell.

"Rubbish." Lori brushed the invisible hex aside.

"But that was how witches did it, according to Shakespeare." Kathryn protested. "What's more, I saw the movie Hocus Pocus."

"Well, Shakespeare is dead and the sisterhood of witches is still alive and I can prove it." Lori spotted her contact entering the coffee shop. "Quick, hide."

Lori Razzo was investigating modern witchcraft and had found a woman who agreed to take her to a secret meeting of a real coven nearby but only after she agreed to an oath of silence. Under no circumstances was Lori to expose the locale or she would forever pay the price of her tongue wagging.

The professed witch glanced furtively around the coffee shop, swayed over to the table and drew up a chair. Leaning forward, she spoke definitely, "I'll pick you up on the corner of Seventh and Wicker at 5:45am tomorrow. Don't be late."

"5:45am sharp."

"And remember, if you violate our agreement there will be harsh consequences to pay." Gabriella's stare bore through Lori like a termite to wood. The message understood.

"This should be a hoot!" she whispered to herself when Gabriella, the self-proclaimed priestess of the coven, strode out of the shop. "Witchcraft, boo-pucky. I'm so scared."

"Well?" Kathryn poked her head around the coffee bean rack. "Did she cast a spell on you? Wait. Let me look into your eyes. Okay, pupils normal and reactive."

Kathryn plopped down in the chair and Lori chuckled, "The meeting's tomorrow."

"Are they going to put a mask over your head?" Kathryn drank down the rest of Lori's tepid coffee. "Can I come?"

"And get me bewitched?" Lori feathered her short, reddish hair behind her ears. "Stay at least two cars behind in the slow lane, okay?" The plan set, the two said good night and went their separate ways until the early morning hour.

The sun crested over the hills while Lori stood shivering on the street corner. What is the matter with these women anyway? Don’t they know any self-respecting witch meets in the darkened shadows under the glow of candlelight and incense?

An Exhibition pulled to the curb and Lori hopped into the front seat. The vehicle, packed with ordinary women, jerked away from the roadside. The voices escalated as Gabriella maneuvered through a series of continuous green lights on target to the prescribed destination.

"Why this is--" Lori gasped.

The Exhibition screeched to a halt and the women quickly scooted out and marched towards the glass doors. Standing in a single line, they extended arms in front of their bosoms and repeatedly flexed both hands open and shut while chanting, "Open, open, open."

Slowly the locked doors opened and the coven welcomed the witches. With purpose, the witches entered with a new incantation under tongue, "Charge it."

Lori stumbled onto the linoleum floor just as the doors closed tightly behind the one-way spell. Just like Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves she thought. Turning backwards, she read the word "s'nyvreM".

"This is the secret coven?" She said, glaring at Gabriella. "Mervyn's?"

With the wink of a long lash and the crinkle of her nose, Gabriella tugged her by the elbow. "Hurry, the best deals are gone in the first ten minutes and remember, mum's the word."

"What to wear, what to wear?" The witches chanted as they ran up and down the aisles of Mervyn's, checking price tags and trying on shoes, looking for the perfect price an hour before the store opened.

"A bargain hunt? This is modern witchcraft?"

Gabriella shrugged, "Witches have budgets, too."

"But isn't this Super Saturday?" Lori looked at a store sign.

"Who do you think started that idea?" Gabriella sighed, sarcastically. "Come on, the racks are already getting bare."

Lori grabbed a leather jacket and draped it over her arm. The witches scrambled and fought over sale items and carried armloads to the cash register. Sale after sale rang up at the register, absent of electricity and a sales clerk. Tiny charge slips printed out and faithfully the members of the sisterhood scribbled signatures of credit agreement, interest-free and triple bonus points.

Lori laid her purchase onto the counter and watched the magical forces fold and package her selection. Cool. She could get the hang of this witchcraft.

Suddenly, a figure appeared at the glass door, peering in, shocked at the private sale in action. Kathryn.

"You!" A witch cursed towards Lori and pointed a rigid finger. "You told someone of our secret coven."

"No…" Lori retreated on her left foot, looking for an escape.

The witches encircled her, grasped hands and slowly started to cast a spell. The cash register clanged, the drawers flung open and shut violently. Dollar signs flashed by in a blur. The sisterhood sang louder and swayed as one. Voices deepened and a lone cackle erupted as the women chanted a few choice mumble-jumbles.

Lori trembled and hugged her purchase. The machine grew hotter, shuddered and spewed out the charge slip. Eyes focused on the intruder and silence overpowered the room as Lori's hand unwillingly signed the charge slip.

"What? $5,031 for a jacket at 34.9% interest. That's outrageous." Lori protested as her pen zagged the "z" in Razzo. "I'll be paying this off forever."

Gabriella spoke with a wicked laugh, "Month after month after month….pay back's a witch."



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Reviewed by Joyce Bowling 1/14/2007
Great story very cleverly written...Your story has a way of getting the point across while entertaining as well. Yes, payback is rough, greed can destroy one. Enjoyed this so much, glad I stopped by.
Joyce Bowling
Reviewed by Regina Pounds 12/28/2006
What a clever way to point out the steep price we pay for betrayal! And -- the price we pay for sales-greed, in terms of interest...charge, indeed!

A lesson well taught, Cynthia.
May 2007 bring you much happiness!
Reviewed by Malcolm Watts 7/4/2006
You could probably write a cool story/novel about some bumbling witches that would be very funny.
Reviewed by Alexandra Riera 11/28/2005
I liked this story very much... it's so different from other witches story... it's great. Very funny too
Reviewed by Tinka Boukes 9/25/2005
Payback is a bitch...I mean witch...bigtime!!

Thanks for the visit!!

Love Tinka
Reviewed by Sandie Angel 9/20/2005

This is a very unique story, and is so funny. A joy to read! You are very creative!

Sandie Angel a.k.a. Sandie May :o)
Reviewed by Sandra Mushi 6/28/2005
Lolololololol!!! Cynthia, I just can't stop laughing! I love the pay back!!!

God bless,

Reviewed by Theresa Koch 6/26/2005
Great article thanks for the smile:)
Reviewed by Eddie Bruce 4/20/2005
Ha! What a lovely imaginative funny story. Thanks for the laughs. I'll catch a few more of these.

Reviewed by OnepoetGem *the Poetic Rapper 3/24/2005
A which of a story, I mean witch of a story. The payback ending made me laugh. Of course my dilemma isn't really funny. This is one reason I laugh. Yes payback is a switch, I mean blink, blink itch! Oh and the children thing is cool, makes sense to me. g
Reviewed by Barbara Terry 3/15/2005
This is very excellent of the modern witches coven. The sale idea, that was funny, but no the punishment give to Lori for breaking an oath, cause once you agree, it is taken as a solemn oath, for which there are punishments. But, that is not the turning into a frog kind of punishment, no, this is more subtle. Wiccans say they are white witches and help those in need, and that theirs is a spiritual withccraft. I believe in witchcraft, like I believe in the Lord Jesus as our Saviour. some may say hogwash, but I say look out. May the Lord be with you always, and at your side constantly. With much love, peace, & (((HUGS))), Barbie

"If I have to...Then I may as well be."
Reviewed by Regis Auffray 1/11/2005
Great humor. Thanks for the smiles. Love and peace. Regis
Reviewed by Diane Ackley 1/2/2005
This was hysterical! And nice to see witches in a story where they're actually people and not some mysterious evil waiting to happen. Great write & really funny. Thanks for sharing.
Reviewed by SARA QUEST 12/14/2004
Hi Cynthia,

You are very talented -- "Bewitched" is unique, comtemporary, quirky, and hysterical! EXCELLENT write!

Love Always,
Reviewed by Tom Hyland 12/1/2004
CIN - and I thought that some mere mortal MAN invented SALES! What does a Martian know?

The punishment CER-tainly befits the crime! Good Write! Tom.
Reviewed by Chuckie Finn 9/3/2004
An amazing sense of humor you possess! I am humbled!..I found myself smiling and laughing all the way through this story!

Best Wishes,
Reviewed by Cheryl Kaye Tardif 8/26/2004
This is halarious!!!! Loved it! Your sense of humor is exhilarating! (ok, why does that word look so weird?SPELL CHECK on Aisle 5!!!!!)
Anyway, I thoroughly enjoyed this story!
BTW....your last line is very similar to the last line of my short story "Separation Anxiety"...hehehe
Reviewed by Henry Lefevre 8/21/2004
Excellent, Cindi. You are really mastering the craft. Too bad you don't live near Alexandria, MN so that you could help me form a critique group.

Reviewed by Constance Gotsch 8/20/2004
This was pure fun.

Connie Gotsch
Reviewed by Hooves Of Fire 8/8/2004
I was glad to see the witches like bargains but the ending was so funny. But it wouldn't be funny if that happened to my human. But I like a bargain myself so I will try Mervyns on a day when the witches are in a jovial mood. I enjoyed this very much and am smiling.
Reviewed by Peter Paton 7/9/2004
Hubble , Bubble Toil and Trouble Debbie !!!
This a marvellous and ahighly amusing !!
Love it !1

Peter Paton
Reviewed by Cynth'ya 6/16/2004
Department stores and promises of credit ease are hyponotic, until one get hexed by Equifax. Glad I took time to leisure read, cute ending Cynthia!

Reviewed by A Serviceable Villain 6/12/2004
Humorous; fresh; delightful!
Reviewed by Jim Dunlap 5/27/2004
This is really a hoot. Congrats.
Reviewed by Robert Petranek 4/5/2004
really a spirited tale of treachery!!!
Reviewed by Franz Kessler 3/26/2004
Nice amalgamation of ordinary and 'wicked' reality in this well-flowing story. Franz
Reviewed by The Smoking Poet 3/2/2004
Wonderfully boo-pucky.
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 11/18/2003
hahahahahahahahahaha!!!! o, this is deLIGHTful! well done! "payback's a witch" LOLOLOLOLOL've penned another keeper

(((HUGS))) and love,

karla. :D
Reviewed by Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado 11/3/2003
Reviewed by Bob Holt 10/25/2003
Oh, nice going! This is a riot! By the way, what do you mean, No More Bobs? Am I going to hear from Gabriella?
Reviewed by Sharron Tyrrell 10/25/2003
LOL great thanks for the laugh

Reviewed by Marilyn Seray 10/25/2003
This had me engrossed from the very beginning to the LOL ending
Reviewed by Dale Clark 10/25/2003
Payback's a witch! lol Great!
Reviewed by Susan Cook-Jahme 10/24/2003
Great one Debbie :0)
Reviewed by Evelyn Simon 10/24/2003
This poem was like watching a comedy movie. Fantastic write.
Loved it. :)
Reviewed by Veronica Hosking 10/24/2003
lol! Reminds me of the Mervyn commercial where the key breaks. Excellent store choice for the story for their magical "open, open open", and it's closeness to Merlin.
Reviewed by Claywoman 10/24/2003
This is sooooo funny! What a great halloween story!
Reviewed by Zenith Elliott 10/24/2003
Wonderful and entertaining story! Bravo! ~Z~
Reviewed by Rodd Jokre 10/24/2003
Gotta give it a smile... ;)
Reviewed by Kate Clifford 10/24/2003
LOL love the freshness of this write! Thanks for the smile!
Reviewed by Janet Caldwell 10/23/2003
Oh my, this is a hoot, love it! lol

JC xoxoxo
Reviewed by Debra Conklin 10/17/2003
Still smiling. Debbie

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