The mid morning sun shine brightly upon the small town of Wilding Springs, Pennsylvania. It's so quiet here you feel as if you had stepped into Mayberry. Small town USA. So quiet and quaint you can't imagine anything unusual happening around here but Tasha and Dalton had said you would be surprise what can happen in a small town.
You sit on the bench with your shopping bags and peer into your wonderful homemade goodies. If its one thing you love about this tour is all the wonderful souvenirs you've picked up along the way. You hear the sound of children laughing before you, place your bag down and watch as a group of children play. Your fellow passengers weave in and out of the small town's stores. You bet the population has doubled since you and your friends arrived to town a few hours ago. This must be the most commotion the town has seen in a long time.
You smile, lean back and think about the trip you had last night. After dinner on the farm, you and and your friends headed back to Charleston, South Carolina where you all boarded the ship. Somewhere between the trip from Charleston to the entrance of Chesapeake Bay you had fallen asleep. When you arose the ship was making its way inland towards the Maryland - Pennsylvania line. You had wondered just how far up river this ship could take you and just where exactly were you going? Just as you had finished your thought the ship docked. Tasha had informed everyone they would be traveling via bus to Wilding Springs, Pennsylvania. Like most small towns on the East Coast, you had never heard of it.
You rise from your bench as you watch Dalton and Tasha gather everyone into a large group. You decide to join them. A few moments later your group is silent. There is a young woman standing beside Dalton. Tasha turns to their guest and introduces her. "Everyone this is Sydlynn Hayle and she is going to show you around."
|Photo of Northampton, Mass. |
Taken by 6SN7 @ http://www.flickr.com/photos/47800690@N03/4643739858/
Um… Hi. Mom was supposed to be here to give you the official coven tour, but she had a cookie baking… incident. So I guess you’re stuck with me.
I’m Syd, her daughter, nice to meet you all. Welcome to our coven’s newest home, Wilding Springs. We haven’t been here long, there’s a shocker right?
Because, you know, covens move a lot. Weird stuff happens, stuff involving the neighbors and quick moves in the middle of the night to a whole new state so no one gets arrested.
Yours doesn’t? Twenty years in one town, really? We have to leave, like, all the time.
Oh. Kay. Moving right along then…
So, we’re starting in the center of town. Picturesque here, isn’t it? Kind of like what you’d expect from a historic novel or something. Look at the perfect prettiness of the trees, the leaves still green. How there are lovely flower boxes on every doorstep. The weather here is still perfect, warm during the day, cooler at night.
Wilding Springs seems like a typical small town, doesn’t it? I have to admit, I find it so perfect it’s a little creepy. Oh, you noticed, too? This place is so clean it sparkles. Look at the old brick buildings filling the historic downtown, trimmed in pristine white. The cobbled stones all the way down main street, perfectly maintained even though they’ve been here for a hundred years or something.
See these cute shops stuffed with trinkets from local artists, homemade baked goods and touristy bits lining the picture quality little town square. You’d like to stop and shop? Maybe later. We on a schedule.
Meanwhile, as you can tell, there’s not a mall to be seen, the closest one a twenty-minute ride on the interstate. Any outward appearance of modern life hides gently behind history and tasteful cheer.
It reminds me so much of a movie set I keep looking around for the camera crew.
Okay, right here, near town hall. You feel that? Makes me shiver every time. This is the first town we’ve lived in that has an air of the supernatural all its own. I know my mom checked it before our last move, but I can’t help get the feeling we live in the land of make-believe.
Wave to the nice residents. Even they are too much, their lives too charming, their homes gingerbread cutouts of cuteness, scrolling detail at eave and doorway. See how each neat, tidy lawn is freshly mowed, the people friendly to a fault?
Yeah. Keep waving.
That’s the local teen hangout, Johnny’s, great place for burgers and shakes if you’re hungry later, as long as you don’t mind a 50’s diner.
Wilding Springs High is next, not much to look at. You’ve seen one big, square, brick school you’ve seen them all. What? Blushing? Why would I be blushing? I’m not staring at the gorgeous blonde football king Brad Peters—
Moving along now. Before he sees me with you.
Okay, sorry this took so long. Here we are in the middle of nowhere. Yeah, there’s a lot of weeds. Watch your step over the ward lines, don’t want to accidentally trigger the family protections, do you? I’d like to stay here for a while if you don’t mind. Perfect. This is our coven site, not much to look at I know, just a big empty clearing surrounded by trees. We try to keep our ritual sites outside every town to avoid suspicion. At least it’s a nice day. It really sucks here when it’s raining.
Happy now? Great. Let’s head back to my house to see Mom. Cookies? She promised you cookies? Um… yeah. You do know Mom’s a bit cookie challenged, right? No? I’m doing the tour and she’s not because she’s probably still in battle with the batch of chocolate chips demanding world domination.
Cookies. We’ll see about that.
This tour is based characters from the Hayle Coven Novels, book one, Family Magic. Find out more at http://bit.ly/FamilyMagic
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About the Author: Patti Larsen is an award-winning middle grade and young adult author with a passion for the paranormal. Her YA thriller series, The Hunted, is available now. Book one of that series, RUN, is a recent recipient of the 2012 PEI Book Awards for Fiction. Eight books of her very popular Hayle Coven Novels, beginning with Family Magic, are also out now. Her YA steampunk series, Blood and Gold, can be found on Amazon, along with her YA paranormal novel, Best Friends Forever, and The Diamond City Trilogy. Her middle grade novel, The Ghost Boy of MacKenzie House (Acorn Press), is available now. She is a full time writer and a part time teacher of her Get Your Book Done program. Patti lives on the East Coast of Canada with her very patient husband and four massive cats.
You can find her:
On her website www.pattilarsen.com
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On Amazon.com and Goodreads