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Authors: Dakota Cassidy

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Witch Slapped (Witchless In Seattle Mysteries Book 1)

BOOK: Witch Slapped (Witchless In Seattle Mysteries Book 1)
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Table of Contents

Excerpt

Witch Slapped

Blurb

Chapter 1

Chapter 2

Chapter 3

Chapter 4

Chapter 5

Chapter 6

Chapter 7

Chapter 8

Chapter 9

Chapter 10

Chapter 11

Chapter 12

Chapter 13

Chapter 14

Chapter 15

Chapter 16

Preview the next book

Note from Dakota Cassidy

eBooks by Dakota Cassidy

Excerpt

G
rabbing my purse, I began to make my way toward the front door, fully intending to take myself back to the hotel and come up with a plan B. Because this was on par with ludicrous. Who signed over all their money and possessions on the word of dead people to someone they didn’t even know?

“So you said. But I can’t access money from a man who essentially claims he doesn’t exist anywhere but in his head.”

“I didn’t say I didn’t exist. I said London would tell you they’d never heard of me. It doesn’t mean I can’t prove to you I have a bank account, Stevie, or that I didn’t see to it that all my money becomes yours.”

I reached for the rusty doorknob, only to watch it turn and seize up. Ah. I knew this sort of ghost. The kind who liked to play rough and dazzle me with his otherworldly powers.

I narrowed my eyes at the room. “You know, Winterbutt, under normal circumstances, I’d break out my wand and zap you right into plane eleven for even considering holding me hostage in this heap of a dump.”

“Scary, Stevie. What’s plane eleven?”

I smiled smugly. “The plane where anyone who’s willfully taken a life spends their eternity. Serial killers, mass murderers. You know; the typical types.”

“Then it’s a good thing for me petulant ex-witch’s wand is out of service.”

“I’m not petulant. I’m skeptical. I’ve only just met you and so far I’ve found a dead body, been questioned in a possible murder investigation, slandered at my favorite taco truck, told I’m going to inherit a house straight out of American Horror Story and a buttload of money, and now you’ve threatened me. Forgive my hesitance to jump into your pool with both feet.”

“I did not threaten you. I was just trying to keep you from making an unwise decision and at the same time, flexing my newbie ghost muscles, if you will.”

I let go of the doorknob. “An unwise decision?”

“Stevie?”

“Winterbutt?”

“The time, please?”

My sigh of impatience rang in the wide entryway as I reached into my purse and pulled out my phone without disturbing Belfry. “It’s five-fifteen. Do you have a hot afterlife date?”

“Check your bank account, please. The one at Paris Spells Savings and Loan, and tell me the balance.”

I flicked my finger over the app to access my pathetic savings account, preparing to see the last of my miniscule thousand dollars depleting rapidly. I fully intended to hold the phone up to his faceless voice and prove to him he was crazy as a bedbug.

Oh. Hold that thought. How in the world…?

I knew I was openly gaping, but I couldn’t help it.

“Do tell, what does your bank balance say, Stevie?” Win asked, a playful hint to his tone.

Witch Slapped

Witchless In Seattle Mysteries, Book 1

Dakota Cassidy

Published 2016 by Dakota Cassidy.

Copyright © 2016, Dakota Cassidy.

All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, recording, or otherwise, without the prior written permission of Dakota Cassidy.

This book is a work of fiction. Any similarity to actual persons, living or dead, locales, or events is wholly coincidental. The names, characters, dialogue, and events in this book are from the author’s imagination and should not to be construed as real.

Manufactured in the USA.

Blurb

What’s a girl to do when she’s a broke, shunned ex-witch with a very tiny, very hungry bat familiar named Belfry to feed?

Hello. My name is Stevie Cartwright, and I’ve been witchless for thirty days.

If only there was a support group for down-on-their-luck ex-witches who’ve had their powers slapped right out of them (literally). Just as I was licking my wounds after returning to my hometown of Ebenezer Falls, WA, and navigating my suddenly non-magical existence with the help of my familiar, the only friend I have left in the world—things got sticky.

Enter an ex-spy and newly departed spirit named Winterbottom, who’s infiltrated my life with his sexy British accent and a couple of requests…

Thanks to Belfry’s successful attempt to use me as a human antenna to the afterlife, I can somehow hear Win. I should be ecstatic; helping departed souls used to be my witch specialty. It’s like I got the teensiest piece of my old life back. Except Win’s dropped me right at a dead woman’s feet.

Madam Zoltar, the town’s beloved fake medium, has been murdered, and Win wants me to catch the killer.

My old life won’t be worth much if it gets me whacked before my new life has barely begun—and that seems to be exactly what the killer has planned!

Acknowledgements

Cover Artist: Valerie Tibbs, Tibbs Design

Dedication

If you’re joining me for the first time, welcome to Ebenezer Falls, Washington, a fictional suburb of Seattle, where my heroine, Stevie Cartwright, has gone to lick her witchless wounds! This cozy mystery and the ensuing series to come is a spinoff of my Paris, Texas, romance series. If you’ve not visited the whacky happenings in Paris, fear not, darling readers! This series is completely stand-alone. If you’ve read Paris, expect to see some familiar faces dropping in from time to time.

I also hope you’ll join me for
Quit Your Witchin’
, Book 2, and
Dewitched
, Book 3 in this series, releasing each month for the next two months.

No matter how you got here, thanks so much for joining Stevie and company on their journey to solve afterlife mysteries and her search to regain her witchy powers!

Also, enormous thanks to Mikell Mcdermott who, out of the blue, threw this awesome title up on my Facebook page—you rock! My BFF forever and ever, Renee George, for her endless advice, and my buddy Michelle Hoppe for her guidance.

And to Arwen Lynch Poe, for her amazing tarot card help and a reading for my character, which I’m still blown away by! I hope you’ll check her out on YouTube
http://www.youtube.com/arwen61

Dakota XXOO

Chapter 1


L
eft, Stevie! Left!” my familiar, Belfry, bellowed, flapping his teeny bat wings in a rhythmic whir against the lash of wind and rain. “No, your other left! If you don’t get this right sometime soon, we’re gonna end up resurrecting the entire population of hell!”

I repositioned him in the air, moving my hand to the left, my fingers and arms aching as the icy rains of Seattle in February battered my face and my last clean outfit. “Are you sure it was
here
that the voice led you? Like right in this spot? Why would a ghost choose a cliff on a hill in the middle of Ebenezer Falls as a place to strike up a conversation?”

“Stevie Cartwright, in your former witch life, did the ghosts you once spent more time with than the living always choose convenient locales to do their talking? As I recall, that loose screw Ferdinand Santos decided to make an appearance at the gynecologist. Remember? It was all stirrups and forceps and gabbing about you going to his wife to tell her where he hid the toenail clippers. That’s only one example. Shall I list more?”

Sometimes, in my former life as a witch, those who’d gone to the Great Beyond contacted me to help them settle up a score, or reveal information they took to the grave but felt guilty about taking. Some scores and guilty consciences were worthier than others.

“Fine. Let’s forget about convenience and settle for getting the job done because it’s forty degrees and dropping, you’re going to catch your death, and I can’t spend all day on a rainy cliff just because you’re sure someone is trying to contact me using
you
as my conduit. You aren’t like rabbit ears on a TV, buddy. And let’s not forget the fact that we’re unemployed, if you’ll recall. We need a job, Belfry. We need big, big job before my savings turns to ashes and joins the pile that was once known as my life.”

“Higher!” he demanded. Then he asked, “Speaking of ashes, on a scale of one to ten, how much do you hate Baba Yaga today? You know, now that we’re a month into this witchless gig?”

Losing my witch powers was a sore subject I tried in quiet desperation to keep on the inside.

I puffed an icy breath from my lips, creating a spray from the rain splashing into my mouth. “I don’t hate Baba,” I replied easily.

Almost too easily.

The answer had become second nature. I responded the same way every time anyone asked when referring to the witch community’s fearless, ageless leader, Baba Yaga, who’d shunned me right out of my former life in Paris, Texas, and back to my roots in a suburb of Seattle.

I won’t lie. That had been the single most painful moment of my life. I didn’t think anything could top being left at the altar by Warren the Wayward Warlock. Forget losing a fiancé. I had the witch literally slapped right out of me. I lost my entire being. Everything I’ve ever known.

Belfry made his wings flap harder and tipped his head to the right, pushing his tiny skull into the wind. “But you no likey. Baba booted you out of Paris, Stevie. Shunned you like you’d never even existed.”

Paris was the place to be for a witch if living out loud was your thing. There was no hiding your magic, no fear of a human uprising or being burned at the stake out of paranoia. Everyone in the small town of Paris was paranormal, though primarily it was made up of my own kind.

Some witches are just as happy living where humans are the majority of the population. They don’t mind keeping their powers a secret, but I came to love carrying around my wand in my back pocket just as naturally as I’d carry my lipstick in my purse.

I really loved the freedom to practice white magic anywhere I wanted within the confines of Paris and its rules, even if I didn’t love feeling like I lived two feet from the fiery jaws of Satan.

But Belfry had taken my ousting from the witch community much harder than me—or maybe I should say he’s more vocal about it than me.

So I had to ask. “Do you keep bringing up my universal shunning to poke at me, because you get a kick out of seeing my eyes at their puffiest after a good, hard cry? Or do you ask to test the waters because there’s some witch event Baba’s hosting that you want to go to with all your little familiar friends and you know the subject is a sore one for me this early in the ‘Stevie isn’t a witch anymore’ game?”

Belfry’s small body trembled. “You hurt my soul, Cruel One. I would never tease about something so delicate. It’s neither. As your familiar, it’s my job to know where your emotions rank. I can’t read you like I used to because—”

“Because I’m not on the same wavelength as you. Our connection is weak and my witchy aura is fading. Yadda, yadda, yadda. I get it. Listen, Bel, I don’t hate BY. She’s a good leader. On the other hand, I’m not inviting her over for girls’ night and braiding her hair either. She did what she had to in accordance with the white witch way. I also get that. She’s the head witch in charge and it’s her duty to protect the community.”

“Protect-schmotect. She was over you like a champion hurdler. In a half second flat.”

Belfry was bitter-schmitter.

“Things have been dicey in Paris as of late, with a lot of change going on. You know that as well as I do. I just happened to be unlucky enough to be the proverbial straw to break Baba’s camel back. She made me the example to show everyone how she protects us…er,
them
. So could we not talk about her or my defunct powers or my old life anymore? Because if we don’t look to the future and get me employed, we’re going to have to make curtains out of your tiny wings to cover the window of our box under the bridge.”

“Wait! There he is! Hold steady, Stevie!” he yelled into the wind.

We were out on this cliff in the town I’d grown up in because Belfry claimed someone from the afterlife—someone British—was trying to contact me, and as he followed the voice, it was clearest here. In the freezing rain…

Also in my former life, from time to time, I’d helped those who’d passed on solve a mystery. Now that I was unavailable for comment, they tried reaching me via Belfry.

The connection was always hazy and muddled, it came and went, broken and spotty, but Belfry wasn’t ready to let go of our former life. So more often than not, over the last month since I’d been booted from the community, as the afterlife grew anxious about my vacancy, the dearly departed sought any means to connect with me.

Belfry was the most recent “any means.”

“Madam
Who
?” Belfry squeaked in his munchkin voice, startling me. “Listen up, matey, when you contact a medium, you gotta turn up the volume!”

BOOK: Witch Slapped (Witchless In Seattle Mysteries Book 1)
11.9Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
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