Chapter 18 - The Unseen Seer

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Lisha was right.

My magic is a failure.

I am was nothing but a failure.

Alana ran down the dark corridor taking turn after turn, not knowing where to go.

If only she could run away from all her problems.

I've always been different, my whole life, Alana's eyes stung at the thought. I was different back home. And just when I thought I belonged...

I'm still alone.

"You're probably thinking some really depressing thoughts right now."

Alana froze in her tracks, looking around wildly for the source of the voice.

"I wouldn't care about the other people, if I were you," the voice whispered softly. There was a pause. "I don't care about anyone."

Alana squinted down the dark hallway, the only sources of light coming from the flickering fire glowing in glass lamps mounted on the walls, and the silvery light of the moon, streaming in through arched windows.

There came a soft, light laugh. 

"Who are you?" Alana asked into the darkness, standing her ground despite the racing of her heart.

"Oh, I forgot," the voice replied mysteriously. "You've not met me yet."

Alana's brows furrowed.

"I've seen you so many times in the future, that I sometimes forget that you don't know me yet."

There was a silence.

Normally, Alana would have been creeped out in a situation like this, but what the voice had said was just downright confusing.

"You've seen me in the future?" Alana couldn't help herself, wide violet eyes still darting from corner to corner.

"Oh yes,"  the whispery voice replied. "I've been seeing you a lot these days."

Alana shivered. Did the air just get a few degrees colder?

"Who are you?" Alana asked again, cautiously, realizing—with suspicion—that the voice in the shadows still hadn't answered that question. 

"Tsk, tsk. So many questions," the whispery voice tsked softly. "It wouldn't do any good for you to know who I am for the time being."

"Why?"

The voice tsked again, muttering something about being stubborn.

"For the first thing, you wouldn't want to know," the voice said matter-of-factly. "And you're not meant to know me—yet."

Alana would have expected herself to feel uneasy at these words, but instead she felt angry. Who did this person think she was? It made Alana feel like she was being taunted—by a person hidden in the shadows, no less.

"Calm down Alana Winters," the person told Alana in an annoyingly soothing voice. "You'll know me soon enough. I'll come look for you when you get back—when it's time."

"When I get back? From where?" Alana asked, despite all her other questions bubbling within her.

"I just had another vision," the voice said simply. "One where you go visit the Witch Queen."

Alana did a double take. Of all the things she'd expected the voice to say, that was certainly the last on the list.

"A—a vision?" Alana sputtered, remembering the queen's name from Witching in History—maybe history did come in handy after all. "Queen Arachna? Why would she want to— She doesn't even know me—"

"Oh, she knows a lot more about you than you think."

"But how do you—"

"I have visions. I have dreams. I have callings, like an urge to do something," the voice said, like it was normal.
"In short, I can see the future."

Alana was speechless.

Who was this creepy mysterious person who could SEE THE FUTURE??

This has to be a lie.

"Just like how I see that you are going to pay the queen a visit," the voice said. 

Footsteps came echoing down the hallway.

Alana turned towards the sound, to see a woman dressed in black, bony hand on a cane, black hair tied up in a tight bun. With one look in the woman's icy blue eyes, Alana instantly knew who she was.

"Miss Winters," Headwitch Storm drawled. "Come with me."

Alana blinked. 

"Did you hear me?" the witch snapped impatiently, thumping her cane onto the marble ground. "Or are you deaf?"

"Where—where are we going?" Alana asked.

Headwitch Storm turned her back to Alana and began striding down the opposite direction she came, hands clutched together, back held rigid.

Alana scampered after her, trying to keep up. 

This is all too sudden.

This is all too confusing.

I need answers.

With a burst of adrenaline, she dashed in front of the witch and blocked her path.

"With all due respect, Headwitch," Alana said trying her best to control her voice, choosing her words carefully. "I deserve to know where we are going, for my safety and—"

Headwitch Storm glared daggers at Alana.

Alana glared defiantly back at her.

Headwitch Storm's eyebrow twitched. 

"if you must know," Headwitch Storm said, stiffly. She sniffed, looking down at Alana in disgust. "We are going to Her Royal Majesty's residence."

Alana sucked in a breath.

Whoever the voice belonged to... it wasn't lying.

How could it be that she was going to the Queen Arachna's palace? What could the queen want with her? 

And why, of all people... her?

And that meant... that whoever it was really could predict the future, after all.

And whoever it was... had seen Alana in a vision.

Visions. 

Plural, to be exact.

Was this a bad sign?

Alana followed the older witch, heart beating fast.

In the darkness behind her... came a whispering voice.

"I told you so."

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