“Sisters, are we ready?” Vanessa hisses, staring at the two other women with narrowed and dark eyes, clutching the spell book in her pale hands. She’s the tallest of the three, with long black hair to her knees and slender fingers; Regina is the thinnest, with icy blue eyes and silvery hair that swirls around her shoulders. Mary Ann is the smallest in both height and stature; she’s a tiny thing, with a small round nose and small red lips and small dry hands. But her brown eyes are large and unblinking.
“Yes, sister,” Regina and Mary Ann breathe together. Regina clears her throat, hurrying to the table to grab the bag of raw chicken feet. She looks away from the others, wrinkling her nose at the contents within the plastic. Mary Ann holds the jar of sheep’s blood tightly against her chest, looking expectantly to Vanessa.
“In your positions?” Vanessa nods toward each of them.
They stare at one another, all in their long black dresses with black pearls wrapped around their necks and pointed black fingernails. They blink, their gazes switching back and forth between one another, waiting for someone to make the first move.
“Er…” Regina clears her throat again, glancing between Vanessa and Mary Ann. “Perhaps––”
“Yes, let’s begin,” Vanessa says awkwardly. She coughs. “I mean, let’s begin! On this hallowed day we chant––”
“Can’t we just fucking take a break?!” Mary Ann shouts explosively, throwing her hands up in the air.
Regina and Vanessa jump, stepping back and breaking the incantation circle by doing so, staring at their tiny sister in surprise. They’ve never seen such a small thing shout such loud words.
Vanessa stares at Mary Ann in shock. “What?”
“It’s about time,” Regina mutters. They both turn to look at her. She raises her hands in apology. “What? She’s right. We’ve been reciting spells for the past month. God forbid we actually, I dunno, relax. It’s a freakin’ holiday. Let’s watch some television. Crack open some beers. Or something. I am sick and tired of drinking sheep’s blood, which is all we’ve drunk for the past goddamn month!”
Vanessa sighs. “Finally. These heels are killing me.” She bends down and yanks the tall black heels from her feet, tossing them aside. She exhales in content, closing her eyes as she leans against the wall and massages her knuckles against her soles. “That’s better. Much better.”
“And these dresses. These are ridiculous. I can’t fucking breathe in these things. These are more torturous than that time we ripped that girl’s fingernails off one-by one.” Regina looks down at her velvety black dress in disgust. She glances up. “You two mind?”
Vanessa and Mary Ann shake their heads. Regina tugs the dress from her shoulders and slips from its clutches, showing a flowing white underdress beneath. She rolls her shoulders and stretches her arms above her, the thick black dress curling up around her heels. “Ladies, take them off. Seriously. Do it now. You’ll thank me.”
The other two quickly step out of their dresses and sigh in relief, finally able to breath without the tight waistlines squeezing the life out of them.
“We’re burning those first thing in the morning.”
“Why wait? We already have a fire started from that one man's clothes. And his hair. I say toss them in.”
They throw their dresses into the flames. The fire in the mantel roars with its new feed.
“What should we do?” Vanessa asks as they stand there, staring at the fire in wonder, unsure what to do with their newfound time.
“I think a new episode of The Bachelorette is out,” Mary Ann says in a small voice.
The other two turn to look at her.
“What?” Mary Ann says defensively, crossing her arms. “I love that show. Sue me.”
“Mary Ann…” Regina bursts out laughing. “I’ve been watching that show for years! I’ve been wanting to talk to someone about it for ages!”
“Stop it.” Vanessa clutches at her heart. “Are you two kidding me? I’ve been secretly watching on my own Hulu account for the last six seasons. Are you telling me we all could have been watching it together by now? And that I didn't have to pay for my own account this whole time?”
“I’m putting it on,” Mary Ann says, happily jumping to the television and fiddling with the channels to find the right episode.
Regina smiles, and turns to the incantation table. “Vanessa, can you please throw those chicken feet into the garbage? I might vomit.” Regina looks at the bag distastefully, scowling.
“Don’t mind if I do.” Gingerly, Vanessa squeezes the tip of the bag with her thumb and index finger, keeping it at a safe distance away from her body as she carefully lifts it off the table and slowly walks toward the kitchen, all the while plugging her nose with her other hand.
“And, please, Mary Ann––dump that blood down the disposal, would you? I’ve had enough of that disgusting jar of shit. I’ll clean up around here.”
Mary Ann pauses the episode and sweeps the jar into her hands, skipping to the kitchen happily, already opening the lid to rid of the horrible substance. Regina quickly dusts away their incantation circle, replacing their rug on top of the cursed symbol and pushing the coffee table back to the center of the room, in front of the couches. She gathers the bowls and candles and goblets and spell books and, after taking a careful look over her shoulder, shoves the materials beneath the couch––where she also stashed the bones of one of the men they tortured.
“You don’t have to hide that, you know,” Vanessa says, laughing, from behind her.
Regina stands quickly, smiling guiltily. “Sorry. So I guess you know my hiding place.”
“Mine's in that cupboard we never use in the kitchen." She shrugs, grinning. "Beer?” Vanessa holds out a bottle.
Regina takes the drink and downs it in less than thirty seconds. “I think we might need a keg,” she says after finishing, ruefully looking at the empty bottle.
Regina and Vanessa whirl around to face the kitchen, where Mary Ann stands beside a large keg, grinning.
“I figured I’d just use a little magic to whip up this beauty tonight. I thought, why not?”
Vanessa laughs. “It’s about time we use our magic for good.”