Ancient curses. Blocked memories. And an Academy for young witches that might just hold the answers.
I should have known something was wrong when my weird aunt arrived in town just as I started getting killer headaches.
But how was I supposed to know that it was a sign of repressed magic?
Or that an ancient witch had escaped her tomb and sent demons after me?
Demons who cursed my mother.
I wanted to stay with her, even if she wouldn’t wake, but I was sent to Ember Academy for Young Witches instead. Somewhere the demons hopefully can’t get me.
I need to find a way to lift the curse, but there’s a block on both my magic and memories that everyone is refusing to lift.
A block that might hold the answers as to why an ancient witch is after me in the first place.
If I can figure her out, maybe I can figure out this curse.
My teachers don’t want me digging into it, worried about the danger.
But I don’t care.
My mother was cursed because of me, and I’m not going to rest until she’s safe again.
BASICS OF SPELLCRAFT is the first book in the Ember Academy for Young Witches YA Urban Fantasy Academy series. If you love kick-ass heroines, Sapphic slow-burn romances, and magical boarding schools, you’ll love this latest fast-paced series in L.C. Mawson’s Snowverse.
Book Excerpt: Demon Attack
“Mum’s still mad at me, isn’t she?” I asked Dad as we waited for the waiter to come with the card machine for the bill. Auntie Jess and Nightingale had gone to the loo, and Mum had gotten a work call she’d needed to take outside.
He sighed, running a hand through his thinning brown hair. “You did yell at her in a restaurant.”
“I didn’t yell.”
He just raised an eyebrow and I folded my arms.
“I didn’t mean to yell,” I eventually muttered.
“I know, Amy. I just wish that you had brought this up at home, where we could have had a real conversation about it. It’s going to be a lot harder to convince your mum now, you know?”
I nodded, but then raised an eyebrow as I realised what he’d said. “Do you think I should go to Ember Academy?”
“I think that your Auntie Jess knows what’s best for you here.”
“Better than Mum?”
He sighed, focusing on his wallet, though he’d already gotten his card ready on the table. Eventually, he met my gaze again. “I think that you want to go, and I think that that’s all that matters.”
Before I had a chance to let that vote of confidence really sink in, everyone arrived back, quickly followed by the waiter.
“Well, I guess we should get going.” Mum said before turning to Auntie Jess. “I suppose you two got the bus?”
Auntie Jess nodded. “Yes, but we’ll walk down with you to the car park. The bus stop is just further down.”
“I can run you home, if you want,” Dad said.
Auntie Jess smiled. “Thanks, Ryan. Are you sure it’s not too far out of your way?”
“Yeah, it’s just five minutes.”
I braced myself, hoping that this wasn’t another chance to argue about Ember Academy.
Dad was right, arguing wasn’t the best path here.
I would apologise to Mum when we got home, and hopefully we could have the conversation again in a couple of days when we’d both had a chance to calm down.
Thankfully, everyone stayed quiet as we made our way to the car park, though it seemed darker than it should have for the middle of summer.
I hugged my arms tight around my chest, a chill running through me as my ears pricked up, as if waiting for something.
I was being ridiculous, I told myself. But then I looked over to Auntie Jess and Nightingale.
Both of them were standing straight, their eyes scanning the environment.
Before I could figure out exactly what that meant, my legs froze, refusing to move.
What the hell?
I tugged, thinking my shoe must be caught.
My legs were stuck, my muscles ignoring me.
I tried to force myself forward, straining with everything I had against whatever force held me there.
But it was futile.
I tried to look down, to find the issue, but my head wouldn’t budge either.
Every inch of my body was frozen.
Including my mouth, a plea for help unable to leave my throat.
The strangled cry I’d made was matched by two more to the side of me as I realised that neither of my parents were moving, either, though it was tough to make them out from the corner of my eye.
All three of us were frozen stiff, held hostage by some invisible force.
“Shit,” Auntie Jess said, still moving. “Nightingale, watch my back. I’ll try to break the curse.”
Nightingale nodded, her arms coming up to a defensive position as Auntie Jess reached down to her boot, pulling out a stick of wood.
How the hell did she think a stick would help?
But then she started to mutter something and the end of the stick glowed blue as the wind whipped up around us.
Before stopping dead.
“Mum!” Nightingale cried, just as several figures appeared around us.
They were cloaked in shadow, but I could just make out paper white skin and glowing red eyes.
Something primal inside of me reacted to the sight, screaming with warning.
- $25 Amazon gift card
- 2x ebook copies of Basics of Spellcraft
About the Author
Some say she’s an ancient creature of nightmare that was unleashed from beneath the ocean, come to devour the souls of men. Others say that she’s a cosmic being from the beyond the stars that has taken corporeal form to learn our ways for some unknown end…
In truth, L.C. Mawson lives in a tower in the middle of a haunted forest, far from civilisation and is definitely (probably?) not a witch who curses those who trespass upon her land. And she definitely cannot turn into a dragon that flies over cities in the dead of night and whose cries are often mistaken for an approaching storm. Where did you hear that? That’s absurd…
The only contact she has with humanity is publishing a book once a month, which is definitely just for fun and not part of an ancient contract with a trickster god.
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