As one of the #CMCon16 featured bloggers, I get to have a little fun with a few of the fabulous authors who will be hitting the beach for Coastal Magic 2016 by showcasing their many stories. Last year I interviewed four of the the CMC15 authors, but this year I’m changing it up. I came up with this really fun idea to have the authors introduce us to their worlds by sending their characters to the beach.
Quite a few of the authors took me up on it and today Deborah Blake is taking us to the beach the fierce Baba Yagas – Barbara, Bekka, and Bella. The fifth Baba Yaga novel, Wickedly Powerful, releases tomorrow!
The Baba Yagas Go to the Beach
“I still don’t understand why you think this is so much fun,” Barbara said, gazing around her at the deserted section of beach on Monterey Bay. “A picnic at the shore just means we get to eat sand with our sandwiches. Besides, it’s too hot.”
Beka, the youngest of the three Baba Yagas who had gathered for a rare meal together, rolled her eyes at her companion. “It wouldn’t feel so hot if you weren’t dressed in head-to-toe black leather.” She pointed at her swimsuit and tie-dyed cut-off shorts.
“Hey, you said to wear comfortable clothes. I’m comfortable in leather.” Barbara shrugged back her cloud of black hair and tugged at the vest that barely reached to her toned midsection. “Besides, the top is small and the pants keep the sand out of my—”
“Barbara!” Bella, the redhead, laughed. “Stop complaining. You know you love to come to the beach almost as much as Beka does, and she practically lives here.” She pointed up at the top of the cliff across Highway One, where Beka’s painted school bus was parked next to Barbara’s silver Airstream trailer and Bella’s own caravan. Of course, they were all actually updated versions of the Baba Yagas’ traditional wooden hut on chicken legs—they just blended in with the modern world a lot better.
Speaking of blending in, three large bodies raced across the beach towards the women, kicking up bits of shell and seaweed in their passage. Each of the Baba Yagas had a companion Chudo-Yudo, a dragon who wore a disguise much like their homes did. Barbara’s Chudo-Yudo currently looked like a massive white pit bull, Beka’s was a large black Newfoundland, and Bella’s dragon took the form of a huge Norwegian Forest cat, who strolled onto the edge of the blanket they’d spread their feast on and said, “Is it food yet? We’re starving.”
“You’re always starving,” Bella said. “But eating will have to wait until after the ritual.”
The Baba Yagas were all witches, just like in the old Russian fairy tales still told about them. Not exactly wicked witches, although Barbara could be a bit crabby at times and Bella had a temper to match the color of her hair. Baba Yaga was less of a name than a job title, really, and Beka, Bella, and Barbara all covered a section of the United States, carrying out their duties of guarding the doors between the Human world and the enchanted Otherworld, keeping the balance of nature (not so easy these days), and if absolutely necessary, coming to the aid of a worthy seeker.
Powerful and beautiful, they spent most of their time on the road, and didn’t get to see each other nearly as often as they liked to, even with the magical doorways concealed within their “huts” that carried them through space a bit faster than normal. But today was the Summer Solstice, and they’d come together to share a ritual and break bread together, as they did on each of the solstices and equinoxes if it was at all possible.
Now they moved to the space Beka had prepared. She stood tall, her long blond hair tinted red-gold by the setting sun. She waved one tanned arm and a ribbon of water snaked up from the edge of the shore to surround their magical circle. Barbara snapped her fingers, and the sand curved up to catch it, her Earth element working with Beka’s Water. Bella took a deep breath and carefully ignited the branches in the fire pit in the middle of the circle. Chudo-Yudo gave a huffing cough and lit the sage wand planted in the sand so that smoke wreathed up to surround them all with the power of Air.
Barbara lifted a chalice of wine to the sky. “May we all be blessed on this solstice day, and may the sun shine on our endeavors and keep us safe.”
They all drank, then raised their faces to the last rays of the sun, content in the gift of sisterhood and the embrace of their magic. Sometimes a trip to the beach was just what the doctor—or the witch—ordered.
Meet Deborah Blake!
Deborah Blake has published seven books on modern witchcraft with Llewellyn Worldwide and has an ongoing column in Witches & Pagans Magazine. When not writing, Deborah runs The Artisans’ Guild, a cooperative shop she founded with a friend in 1999, and also works as a jewelry maker, tarot reader, and energy healer. She lives in a 120-year-old farmhouse in rural upstate New York with five cats who supervise all her activities, both magical and mundane.
- Wickedly Magical
- Wickedly Dangerous
- Wickedly Wonderful
- Veiled Magic
- Wickedly Ever After
- Wickedly Powerful
The Witch’s Broom: The Craft, Lore & Magick of Broomsticks
The Goddess Is in the Details: Wisdom for the Everyday Witch
Circle, Coven, & Grove: A Year of Magickal Practice
Everyday Witch Book of Rituals: All You Need for a Magickal Year
A to Z Spellbook: Wonderfully Witchy Blessings, Charms & Spells
Everyday Witch A to Z: An Amusing, Inspiring & Informative Guide to the Wonderful World of Witchcraft
Witchcraft on a Shoestring: Practicing the Craft Without Breaking Your Budget
Thank you Deborah for taking part in Literary Escapism’s At The Beach feature!
Deborah is giving away a Wickedly Powerful prize pack of a cute red dragon, giant tote with the new cover on one side and both older covers on the other side, a notebook, a “Be Wicked” broom, and some bookmarks. To enter, all you have to do is answer this one question: which fictional character would you like to go to the beach with? Remember, you must answer the question in order to be entered.
Don’t miss your chance to meet over 50 fabulous urban fantasy, paranormal, and romance authors at Coastal Magic next February! This super casual book-lover weekend happens on Daytona Beach, and gives everyone the chance to hang out with fellow readers and amazing storytellers.
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