01-48 Black Sabbath

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It’s Rowan’s birthday, the second time he blows out his candles…

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… and unfortunately the Di Grisogno’s doesn’t need Ellen Janssen’s services anymore.

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Shasta is now sure of her pregnancy, and she would have liked Ellen to stay…

I must tell Leonardo; he might be pleased… even though we only decided on one child…

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Leonardo is not happy about having another baby, nor is he angry… he looks rather thoughtful. ‘I will have to go on a short business trip this week… Maybe you should come with me?’

‘Where to?’

‘Lombardia.’

‘I didn’t know we had business there?’

‘We have. Trust me, we have…’

Little does Shasta know about a dark pact from long ago…

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February 1st. The thirteen warlocks of the coven are united for the Black Sabbath at San Colombano al Lambro… Shasta has been drugged to cooperate but is still shivering in the cold winter night.

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The High Priest approaches, a black demon with pagan symbols written in blood all over his body. Shasta shivers and passes out…

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Leonardo has changed since their return to Monte Vista. He’s not the charming gentleman she married anymore; he acts more like a prison guard and he rarely lets her out of his sight. She has now spent a whole week in their bedroom reading and watching TV. Shasta is bored and decides to have a look in Leonardo’s bedside drawer.

Hmm… What is this? Hidden under a lot of newspaper clips and documents, she finds a book. “Young Goodman Brown” by Nathaniel Hawthorne. Shasta sits down and starts to read, getting more and more scared as she turns the pages… “human fat, especially of non-baptized children, is used to make an unguent that enables the witches to fly…”

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I have to find a way to get out of here… Shasta can’t remember what has happened to her, but it must be something bad as she keeps seeing a black demon in her nightmares.

And the book! What does the book mean? If only I could contact Mother… Maybe Rowan can help me?…

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Rowan visits her as often he can – or is allowed to. This morning she told Rowan she’s about to have a baby and at first he was angry to have to share, but there are advantages also in being a big brother…

Now he’s back to apologize. ‘I’m sorry, Mom. Can I feel the baby?’

Shasta is happy to oblige…

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But when Rowan touches her bulging belly, something happens to him.

‘Rowan! What happens!?! Talk to me! ROWAN!’ Shasta doesn’t know what to do; she backs off from her son who suddenly scares her.

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The door closes with a loud crash after her fleeing son.

‘Have you told him?’ Shasta doesn’t answer. ‘Good. Now you must continue doing as you’re told.’

  Part I – End of Chapter 48

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