~The Celtic Wizard~

Chapter 20  

Kevin was antsy as he methodically cleaned Catherine’s condo.  Working out his frustrations seemed to be not getting him anywhere.  Something was gnawing at him, a feeling of hopelessness.  He felt frustrated and threatened as he scrubbed the counters trying to relieve the tension.  Blowing out a breath, he heard his mother’s voice.

“What's wrong Kevin?”  

“I dunno, something isn’t right.  I want a commitment from Catherine and she can’t or won’t give it to me.  I have to go to the Council but something is stopping her.  Then there is this thing with the Dean, it isn’t natural.”  Kevin folded the dishrag and hung it neatly on the faucet.  The lines weren’t lining up on fabric.  It was forcing the little checked boxes to be askew.  Pulling it back, he refolded again, trying to force the lines to match exactly.

Anne said nothing as she watched her son’s aggravation turn into an obsession.  A slight smile came over her face as he folded the dishcloth over and over again.  “Kevin you need to decide what you want to do.”

Giving up he tossed the rag into the sink out of annoyance.  “I can’t, I know what I want.  I want it all.  This is going too slow and the festival isn’t far away.  I have this bad feeling I can’t shake, like something is going to happen to her.  I want to be her mentor in all aspects of life.  I’d just zap her into compliance but they’d hang my ass out to dry again.”

Anne sighed loudly, sometimes the men in her life thought too much.  The answer was simple and staring right at him.  “Kevin, if this is what is upsetting to you, offer Catherine some protection.”

“Anne Richardson, did you not learn your lesson the last time?”  The voice by most would have been deemed harsh.  Kevin smiled knowing that the reprimand was nothing more than a playful jab at each other but in a way a warning also.

Kevin smiled, “Yeah mom, the last time I listened to you, you just should’ve of said ‘bend over Kevin’.”

“Kevin!  That is your mother!”  Jerald took offense to the remark.

Anne laughed, Kevin was right; her interference was part of the problem last time.  “Don’t worry dear, Kevin is just being anal over a dishrag instead of following his heart.  If he follows his heart the rest will fall into place.”

Kevin’s tongue balled in his cheek as he looked down at the cloth square that he continued to fold and re-fold.  “I’m not anal.”

His parent’s laughter filled the room.  “Dear if your father agrees with me on this, it might make you feel better.  Every apprentice witch needs tools for the craft.  If by chance something in the way of protection happen to slip into these items, well, what can you do?”

Kevin grinned, “Mama, I love you...  I’ll be home soon, to see you in person.”  Tossing the rag into the sink, he grabbed his coat and headed for home.  He had somewhat of a plan going now; he just needed to sort out the details.

“Anne you must really stop meddling...”

A loud crack of thunder informed Jerald that he had hit a sore spot with her.  She had tried to help Kevin too many times in the past.  Kevin needed to make his own path and destiny in this world.

“I’m not meddling, I’m being a mother!” was the sharp reply he heard.  She had left and was back home. 

Jerald scratched the side of his head,  “The boy is thirty now mama, he can decide some things for himself.”

“He’s my baby!” was shouted loud enough that Jerald and Tim’s attention were caught.

“Kevin again...,” they sighed.  “We should throw him in the creek again, maybe he’d snap out of it.”

“You’ll do no such thing!  Kevin is right, something is very wrong.  He can feel it and I can sense it too.”  Jerald joined his two sons.

“So tell him, so he can avoid it,” Jerald looked at him.

“I can’t it’s a test, I think, he needs to find his own way.  If your mother would just stop sticking her nose where it doesn’t belong.”

Both of them laughed at him.  Tim spoke first, “We’re talking Kevin here, forget it, he’s the baby.”

“You’re right boys, he’s the baby,” Jerald laughed good-naturedly with them.

Kevin went to his own home and began gathering some ‘gifts’ for Catherine.  Switching on the light of the cabinet, he unlocked the door.

He found the first Bolline that was ever given to him.  His grandmother had given it to him as a birthday gift.  The smooth white-handled knife was as sharp as the day it was given to him.  That was a birthday party he had never forgotten.  It was a private affair, no outsiders.  As he unwrapped each gift that day, the pieces to the puzzled fell into place.  That day he found out what he really was.

His doorbell rang, shifting his thoughts to the present.  Going to the door he let Brian in, “Hey,” Brian sauntered in the room and headed directly for Kevin’s den.

Kevin stood with his hand on the doorknob.  Dropping his head, he glanced to the tile floor,  “Are the rest of them coming?”

“Of course,” Brian shouted back at him.

“No privacy,” Kevin muttered as he began to shut the door.

“Hey dude, that’s rude,” A.J. whisked into the house.

“I’ll just stand here until ya’ll get in here, okay!”  Kevin shouted as Nick appeared at the door wearing a grin to beat the band.    

“Howie’s right behind me,” Nick bounced into the room. 

Kevin leaned on the doorknob with one hand; tossing his other arm up into the air, he looked towards the ceiling.  “What did I ever do to deserve this?”

“Aww, you love of us Kev, we save your butt all the time.”  Howard snickered as he waltzed by him.

Slamming the door shut, he wandered back to the den.  The four of them didn’t dare go near the open cabinet door as they sat on the couch.

Nick stood up and looked at the Bolline that was resting on a piece of velvet on the coffee table.  While walking around the table, he admired it.  He wouldn’t touch it, it was sacred.  “Pretty serious about this.  Isn’t that the one from your grandma?”

“Yes I’m serious and yes it is,” as Kevin walked over to the cabinet.  Pulling the black handled Athame from the cabinet, he set it next to the Bolline. 

“That was Jer’s, he gave it to Kev,” Brian remarked for them to understand that these items had never left Kevin’s possession and were special to him. 

Digging around, Kevin found a few more things to add to the growing collection.  A few bowls, some candles, and a birch rod.

“Well Kev I think you’re pushing it,” A.J. watched as Kevin carefully tended to each treasure.  “Just because you give her the stuff doesn’t mean she is going to accept you or herself or what you want.”

“I know,” Kevin growled.  He wanted to think and wanted this to be a private moment.  All of these tools had special memories attached to them.  Giving Catherine these tools was the equivalent of giving her part of himself.  Reaching high up in the cabinet, he pulled down a rather large dark green satin box.  Side-ways glances were exchanged among the boys.

Lifting the lid, Kevin fingered the matching pair of silver bracelets.  Identically matched except for size. 

“You can’t do that,” Howie interjected his thoughts.

“Not yet, but I will,” Kevin was determined now.

“She means that much to you Train?”  Nick walked over to him and looked at the bracelets.  “That’s a long time to be bound to one woman.”

“Yes Nick she does,” Kevin answered, as he lifted a small silver pendent from the box.  The pendent was an amulet.  The amulet was a duplicate to the one he wore on a leather fob around his neck.  For those who accepted the craft, it was his mark, he wore it with pride.  It stood for everything he believed in and stood for.  It informed new comers to the craft of who he was and what he was.  This was his mark of protection, to ward off negative energy and doings away from any one he chose to wear it.  Holding the necklace in the air, the silver medallion rotated in a circle.  Later when they were gone, he would charge it with magick to protect her, to wear his mark, to warn others that she was special to him, and to make himself feel better.  The matching amulets were forged from the a piece of silver from the bracelets themselves. 

Kevin had become distracted watching the silver pendent spin in the air.  What he missed was the fact that several tools had joined the ones he had picked out.  Nick slapped his back to get his attention.  “I like her,” he grinned.

Kevin smiled back at him, “Me too.”  His eyes turned to the coffee table and he saw four gifts had joined his.  A small broom that could be hung on a wall, tied with a raspberry colored ribbon, to sweep negative energy away.  A slight smile crossed his face as he noted the color matched Catherine’s lips.  Also on the table were a bell, cauldron, and a book. 

His head tilted slightly as he looked at the four men staring back of them.  Each one of them had given her something that had meant something to them.  All of the items were heirlooms with generations of power attached to them.  Glancing to the cauldron, laughter bubbled from him.  “We need to hold off on the cauldron D.  I do appreciate it, but the woman is hell in the kitchen.”

“Mama D will help her out for sure,” Howie chortled back at him.  “We can get a fire extinguisher too.”

Cocking his head sideways, Kevin looked at Nick.  Nick stood in place next to the coffee table with his hands stuffed in khakis, softly whistling.  “Nice ribbon Kaos,” he winked at him.

Nick flashed him a smile, “It matches the colors in her condo.”

“That ain’t all Nick, is it?”  Kevin questioned good-humouredly.

Nick blushed slightly, “She liked me first, I was in her room.”

Brian burst out laughing, “On the wall you bonehead, posters don’t count.”

Suddenly three objects danced lightly in the air over the tools that were already placed on the coffee table.  Kevin placed his hand out and they nestled in his palm.  “For my brother,” he heard Jerald’s voice.  In his hand lay a piece of Sunstone, a Ruby, and a piece of Obsidian.

“All of them are for Catherine,” he heard Tim’s voice next.  “The Ruby for joy and deflection of nightmares is from me.  The Sunstone is from Jerald for Protection, energy, health....”  Tim stopped speaking.

“Tim you’re such a minister,” Jerald groaned loudly.  “For passion and sexuality Kevin.  If you‘re going to spend eternity together, it better be good,” he laughed.

“You’re disgusting Jerald,” Tim chastised him.  “Tracy sent the Obsidian for grounding and protection.”

A fourth stone appeared and the room began to fill with laughter.  “For my son,” the rock dropped in his hand.  “Onyx for emotional balance and self-control over your...” Anne cleared her throat loudly, “Those sexual urges you have son and to bind her to you.”

The color drained from Kevin’s face, the blood then poured back into it as hr glowed red from embarrassment.

“Sorry dear,” she giggled.

A.J.’s cackle could be heard above the rest.  “Your mama knows Kev, your mama always knows.”

“Thank you,” Kevin replied, knowing that they had accepted his decision and choice.  Catherine was welcomed to join their family.

Kevin’s guests had left as suddenly as they had appeared knowing that he needed some time to empower these items before bestowing them on Catherine.  Kevin was running out of time, she would be home soon and he told her he would be there when he got back.

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This is a work of fiction.
The characters and events portrayed are fictitious.
Any resemblance to real people or events is purely coincidental.

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