Kamillia is an author of paranormal romances living in an upscale suburb of Cleveland, Ohio. Accused of being an actual witch by an ambitious group of businessmen with a dark agenda, she is surprised when she finds a man who resembles one of her fictional, alpha male heroes at her door offering his protection.
Luca is an immortal Watcher from the River of Light. Sent to Earth to help Kamillia, whose true heritage has yet to be revealed to her, Luca is caught off guard by the fighting spirit of the woman, and unnerved by the way his human body betrays him in her presence.
Research for her next novel requires Kamillia to travel to Salem, MA the week of Halloween, where she and Luca are forced to join together, overcome numerous obstacles, and conquer the evil of many centuries blocking a portal. Only then can she return to the problems awaiting her in her own city, with or without this stranger who has captured her heart but cannot share her future.
The hefty breeze pushed the small, blue, rolling waves into white, jagged peaks with the same urgency he felt inside as he sat gazing out upon the vastness of the water. Leaning against a weathered retaining wall with an audible sigh, Luca glanced behind him at the blue-gray haze over the small town cityscape silhouette. The pollution, a mixture of smoke and sky, presented itself as an omen of great significance to him. He knew the buildings, along with some of the houses beyond, already held within them the inhabitants he’d both come to protect and come to battle. In his five hundred years as a Watcher, the energy of the Earth had changed, negatively affecting the human condition.
He viewed their existence from his realm on a daily basis, a place just beyond this one, a small segment of space that served as a window to the world. From his perch there, each city had its own fundamental haze blurring its buildings and beings. This mystical force field, referred to as The River of Light, or simply The River by Watchers such as Luca, formed an energy grid covering the earth.
The grid could be seen as a matrix of light, sound, and colors forming geometric patterns around the planet. Humans had attempted to observe such patterns in the study of Sacred Geometry, but the immortal Watchers watched over and recorded the changing spiritual energies of history from their posts at The River. Ever shifting, the ebbs and flows of the negative and positive life energy swirled and moved over the varied landscapes of the Earth much like waterways. Therefore, it was critical for him to witness when certain changes emerged, what energy the events causing the changes added to the collective conscious of the world, and how the energy impacted the flow of The River. Recently, this city in the northeastern part of the United States had grown darker and darker until it choked under a bout of polluted smog-like energies. To give an ironic but truthful view of history, this was the first time Salem, Massachusetts had looked this bad. Even then, the frenzy of the only spiritual pollution inspired by the hunters during the witch hunts hadn’t darkened things to this extent. The residual energy that lingered here had been built upon since and currently required his intervention.
On Earth, back in true human form, a Watcher could see through this haze to the true souls of the people revealed to him in the colors of their auras. Both systems simply mirrored each other. Just as the human body had a meridian system with vital life force energy flowing through it, the world had a similar system of passageways through which the collective life force flowed. They not only mirrored each other, but affected each other, too. On the astral plane, the integral energy of human thoughts, words, and deeds combined into the mystical force field he kept watch over. Although he’d been sent to Earth many times before, a greater sense of foreboding gripped him this time. The places where the lines of the energy grid intersected and channeled to the earth had become blocked at alarming rates here these last few days, warning of impending danger. At portals such these, the energy proved stronger in its effects on the surrounding area.
Luca felt Ahti, the Watcher who’d called him from his post, approach with a peace so strong it preceded him even as he crossed realms. He knew the moment to begin his next assignment arrived with the sound of grains of sand rubbing together, large feet pushing the granules aside with each step. A large shadow covered over the thin line of debris-filled foam along the shore. Ahti spoke to Luca in an oddly comforting voice for the exigency of his message.
“It is time, Luca. It has begun to worsen here beyond what we’d anticipated. The River of Light is polluted greatly over this region. The black forces, which some ignorantly mess with, have charged the air with a significant amount of negativity. It darkened just this morning, causing the ripple effect to the flow at this portal greater than we’d initially feared. I’ve granted humanness to many of the immortal watchers like you this time. You each know the job you have to do to help the human you’ve been assigned to. You know what is at stake. She’s soon going to be at an inevitable crossroad, and her decisions will have a major impact on The River. Such is the human condition these days, I often feel the fate of the world is being decided with each mission.”
“Yes, Ahti, I will do my best to help to clear the portal here,” Luca assured the Watcher.
“I’m afraid this mission will not be so simple. Sometimes Watchers are called for anomalous reasons. Depending on why a Watcher was called in the first place, these exclusive missions, deviating from the norm, can be much more involved than they usually are. So, you'll need to follow the signs without questioning them. You are a Watcher with great powers, but you also have been matched to Kamillia for unique reasons not yet revealed. Trust, Luca. You understand why it has to be so. I cannot explain any further at the present, though, without jeopardizing your part in the whole.”
“She is still unaware of her heritage, sir?”
“Very much so. The history you were given of your charge when summoned was very much up-to-date despite the haste of its delivery. You know Kamillia has been back in her hometown now for over a year. The first threats toward her by the Mastema began a few weeks ago. Yet, Kamillia is a strong woman, despite being unaware of all she is. The Mastema have been playing with spells of black magic they do not truly understand. With their frail human knowledge, they do not realize their actions are slowly condemning the world. The men lust for power and material possessions and, in their ignorance, have succumbed to any means necessary to obtain such things. The Mastema have become mere pawns to the evil they have played with. The demons rule the men now. Therefore the portal here has darkened. The nature of the depravity they have invoked goes beyond what we have seen in centuries. The negative energy of their thoughts and actions greatly interrupts the flow of The River. If cleared, their so-called powers will be gone as the demons and dark energy cultivates for centuries will be forced out.”
Luca turned to look at the Watcher, whom he trusted enough to do whatever was asked of him with blind faith in the protector’s wisdom. A smirk marred his features as a fleeting thought occurred to him: for one so great and wise, the man in front of him looked the part. Watchers were all stuck at the age their lives had ended on Earth. Ahti had reached a wise old seventy-nine when he was granted his immortality, so he appeared like the mage he was with his long beard comprised of scraggly gray hairs. The elder served a bigger role among them as messenger and guide. Unlike him, Luca’s final life had been cut short, making him an eternal twenty-five. He had no memories of his time alive. Like all Watchers, his past lives had been erased. Along the same reasoning, he was not allowed the knowledge as to why he had been chosen.
The sky behind the formidable figure of Ahti lurked with unnatural shades of jade and agate, creating an ominous darkness resembling the coming of a storm.
“What is with the sky?”
Ahti turned so rapidly, his cloak of white rippled like the white caps on the angry water. “I do not know. Go. Now!”