Danni sat down at her computer and logged onto YWS. She began browsing the Green Room for things to review, smiling as a thought struck her. It would be fun to write a story about all this. Of course, all the YWSers thought she was just an ordinary human, so she'd have to pass it off as fiction.
"What are you doing?"
Danni jumped. "God, Marcia! A little warning!"
Marcia laughed. "I can be very sneaky. What is that you're looking at?"
Danni grinned. "It's a social media. You write stories and other members review them. It's really cool."
Marcia nodded. "Sounds fun."
There was a creak as Danni's bedroom door swung open. Cassie was standing in the doorway. "Knock, knock," she called.
Danni panicked. Marcia was standing there in plain sight. "Cassie! Go away!"
"Why?" her sister asked, strolling in and peering at the screen. "Can I use your computer? I have to type up my history essay."
"Use the one downstairs," said Danni, shooting a glance at Marcia. Cassie hadn't even reacted. It was like she couldn't see the strange girl standing smack bang in the middle of the room.
"Mark's playing his stupid computer games and he won't let me have it. Please, Dan? I'll lend you my skateboard?"
"Alright," Danni said, smiling. Cassie always got her own way. "But no reading all my emails again, you hear?"
"Yes, boss," Cassie grinned, sitting down at the computer. She still hadn't noticed Marcia.
Danni beckoned surreptitiously to Marcia. "See you in a bit, Cass."
Once they had left the room, she rounded on Marcia. "How did you do that? She couldn't even see you!"
Marcia laughed. "It's a simple spell. Only the people I want to see me can see me. They can still hear me, though. That was a very easy one, a beginner could do it. To go utterly undetected would require serious skills, way beyond my level."
A wistful look came into her eyes. "Someone I knew once could do it. The greatest witch I ever knew."
"Can you teach me?" Danni asked eagerly.
"What, to go completely undetected? Do you have two years to practice?"
"No!" she laughed. "The simple one."
"Oh, right. Of course I can."
After about fifteen minutes of practising the spell over and over, Danni walked downstairs invisible to everyone except Marcia.
Katie was sitting in the back room watching a David Attenborough programme. Danni walked in and waved.
Danni grinned at Marcia. It was working! She did a few star jumps.
There was a bleep from her pocket. She froze.
Katie looked up, frowning. Where had that come from? Danni quickly ran out of the room and made herself visible again, collapsing laughing into a chair. She pulled out her phone. Caz had sent a text:
Meet me at the alley up by the supermarket. Something weird going on.
She texted back, OK, be there in five minutes x
"Mum!" she called. "I'm going out!"
"OK!" her mum called. "Be back in time for dinner!"
Danni grabbed her coat and shoes from by the front door. "Coming, Marcia? Caz spotted something weird by the supermarket."
"Sure," said Marcia with a smile.
By the time they got to the supermarket it was beginning to get dark. The usually bustling shop was deserted. Not even any staff tidying up or running the tills.
Danni shivered. This was spooky. She got out her phone to call Caz.
It went straight to voicemail.
"OK," she said, trying to stop her voice from shaking. "We'll split up. Marcia, you go up that side, and I'll check this bit. Call me if you see anything suspicious."
Marcia nodded and disappeared round the back.
Danni walked up the alley, casting nervous glances over her shoulder. Dark storm clouds were gathering overhead. She sent a text to Alex:
Caz told me to meet her by the supermarket and there was something weird happening, but she's not there and the place is deserted? Are you with her? What's going on? Tried calling her but her phone's off.
The reply came through almost immediately:
OMW she told me too. BE CAREFUL. Might be some kind of monster.
OK, try and get here soon. Really scary here. she wrote back.
She tried Caz again.
"Hi, Caroline here. I can't take your call right now, so leave me a message or send me a text and I'll get back to you. BEEP!"
There was a growl from behind her.
She froze in terror. Slowly, she turned around.
A huge wolf was standing behind her. The top of her head came up to its shoulders. It growled again menacingly and padded towards her.