About ten minutes later I stopped in front of my favorite, and the only one in town, Pagan store. When I walked in I heard the faint chime of a bell, signaling to the shop owner that somebody had walked into the store.

Immediately the charming smell of incense hit my nose. I just loved the smell of this store, and could probably just sit in here for hours trying to distinguish the different smells.

I grabbed a basket that was by the front door and casually headed over to the candle section. I picked up about ten non-scented candles in different colors. They would be used in some of my spell working and for light whenever I didn't feel like getting up and turning on the overhead light. I got two more vanilla scented candles for the bathroom. Deciding also that maybe our apartment would be at least a little bit nicer if it smelled nicer I got about twenty different scented candles. I chuckled wondering if Evan would object to having candles placed in his room. He probably wouldn't, most likely he'd agree that the apartment needed to smell better. I also placed five packets of incense in the basket, knowing I was running low on those.

Done in the candle section I headed over to the books. This, by far, was my favorite part of the store. There were books on almost every subject having to do with Paganism and witchcraft. There was books for beginners, intermediates, and novices. Volumes of the Salem witch trials, women's oppression, and witch hunts. Books on all sorts of magick: candle, herb, coven, solitary, and rune, could be found. I decided that since I had bought a bunch of candles I should buy a book on candle magick.

Eagerly I began searching the shelves. Muttering to myself every now and then.

"Here," came a voice.

A second later a book was placed under my nose.

It read "Magic for beginners." It was only about fifty pages long and looked childish. I gazed at the person that was standing in front of me. It was a girl about my age. She had auburn hair and lovely sapphire eyes. Wearing a peasant top and a flowing amethyst skirt she looked beautiful and chic.

"Excuse me?" I spluttered.

"For you," she fake smiled. "Need to know the basics first."

I could feel my anger boiling up already. How dare she think I was a beginner.

"Well, shows how much you know. I already know the basics." I watched as her eyes grew wide in astonishment and embarrassment.

"First," I continued. "I've been studying Wicca for about two years." I glanced down at my pentacle and felt her follow my gaze. Turning slightly, I lifted my shirt so she could see my lower back and the tattoo that was there.

"Ummm...." she muttered.

"Second, you shouldn't be recommending books that aren't going to be helpful. Pagan magick is spelled with a 'k.' Any beginner would know that."

Her eyes went back to regular size when she realized I was telling her off. Her features were slowing starting to turn red with embarrassment.

I smirked at her, and turned on my heel. I paused in front a shelf of books and pulled out the candle magick book I had been looking for earlier. Walking to the counter I felt the girl's eyes follow me. I paid for my purchases and headed out the door. I spared a glance over to the books where she was now looking at books on runes.

Chuckling to myself and strolled outside and back to my apartment to get ready for work.

As I headed back toward my apartment I checked my watch. It was only a little after three 'o' clock. I decided to finish my shopping tomorrow and spend the rest of the time until I had to work catching up on my sleep. As soon as I got home I dropped my shopping bags casually on my bedroom floor, fell onto the mattress, shut my eyes and slept.

About three hours later my internal clock woke me up. Often I forget to turn on my alarm clock, but I never have to worry about that. Usually I wake up on my own around the time I have to work. Checking my clock I saw it was fifteen till six. Hurriedly I dashed into the bathroom.

Since it was a Saturday, employees didn't have to wear the standard uniform. I wiggled into a short black leather skirt and a leather halter top. Zipping up my dark purple go-go boots I had found at a thrift store, I checked the mirror. Most of my make-up had rubbed off and I started to reapply it. I noticed some purple eye-liner that I had never used, and put that on first. Then, the usual make-up: black eye-shadow, black lipstick, and purple glitter. Since I had more skin showing than usual I smeared the glitter on every visible amount of skin. Grabbing two hair bands, I pulled my hair into two pig tails. Glancing at the mirror I grinned. I looked like a sixteen-year-old gothic stripper. Still smiling I headed downstairs.

I had the "Tiger's Den" for the whole night. I started wiping down the bar and setting everything in it's place. Music was already blaring from the speakers. I opened the double doors that separated the room from the main one, and was surprised to see about fifteen people already there. Some of them glanced at me and smiled, the others just continued with their business.

By eight things had picked up. The place was packed, and thriving. Loud, angry German music blasted from the speakers. Every where people laughed, danced, drank, and yelled. I saw a boy standing next to the speakers down about six glasses of beer and five aspirins. A club was not a great place to be if you had a headache. He must've been with friends, or else he probably would have left already.

I was in the middle of making a cement mixer when *she* walked in, the girl from the Pagan store. But, now, she looked different. At the store she had been casual and looked like model from Abercrombie and Finch. Now, she looked like all the rest of the punk's and goth's that occupied this city.

Her auburn hair was tied up in a fashion I'd never seen before. It was original though. Her hair looked messy and unkempt, and was placed at various areas around her head. Blue, black, and purple hair scrunches held up her hair. She had piercings that hadn't been there before. Her nose, lip, eyebrow (which had two), ears (four each) were all pierced. I was willing to bet money that her tongue was also pierced. She wore a red snake skin top that was low cut, showing off an impressive body. Tight black pants (they looked to be vinyl) clung to her tiny frame. Chunky heeled boots, with straps and buckles adorned her feet. About five chains hung around her neck. Along with a spiked dog collar and a pentacle. She had on only one bracelet though, a studded wrist band. More skin was showing than earlier and I noticed some tattoo's. The anarchy symbol was imprinted on her right shoulder, and a Chinese symbol on her lower left arm. I guess she probably had more on her legs, and on her back.

She walked casually to the bar, glancing around the room. I noticed that a lot of people stared at her and smiled. Most of them she saw, and smiled back politely. When she reached the bar she locked her sapphire eyes on me. The brightness of her eyes stood out compared to her black eyeshadow and eyeliner.

"Mudslide, please," she said with crimson lips. I couldn't help but notice how luscious and vivid her lips seemed to be.

Blinking myself out of my stupor and bent down behind the bar to receive her drink.

"Thanks," she said as I handed it to her. "I usually don't come here, but for some reason you look familiar. Have we met before?"

I almost laughed out loud. I must've looked about as different as she did from earlier. I wondered why I had recognized her, yet she didn't seem to remember me.

"Actually, we have," I said. She nodded for me to continue. "Today, to be more precise. At the Pagan store up town."

She gazed at the ceiling looked thoughtful. She stared back down at me with eyes wide in recognition.

"Oh my..." she muttered, with red cheeks. Obviously she was remembering how rude she had been. "I'm...ummm..."

"Sorry?" I helped.

She blushed even redder. Goddess, she looked cute when she did that. I slapped myself mentally for thinking that. Snap out of it! She was mean to you remember?

"Yeah, I'm sorry. I was acting like a bitch. I didn't mean to well...insult you like that. I should've know better," she apologized.

I stood there silent, not blinking. She smiled, and again I couldn't help but look down at her lips. They looked so soft, and tender. I just wanted to...

I kicked myself underneath the bar to stop the thoughts that were running through my head.

"I really am sorry! Forgive me?" she pleaded. She gave me one of the most sad faces I'd ever seen and the most innocent smile. How could I not say yes?

"Of course...Just don't do it again!" I grinned.

"Absolutely not," she said as she took a sip of her drink. "Anyways...so you work here?"

Noticing the look I gave her she smiled. "Dumb question, of course ya' do. Oh! We haven't been properly introduced. Calisto is the name, most people just call be Cal though."

"Phoenix," I said casually. "Nice name," she grinned.

"Thanks,you too," I wasn't talking as much to her as I usually did to other customers. I guess I was just stunned by her. Her beauty, her voice, her name, everything about her. Goddess no...please don't let me start to fall for her.

"Well, anyways, I better let you get back to work. I'll be here most of the night! Holler if ya' feel like talking!"

With that, she strolled off. I used all of my will power not to look at the lower part of her back side. Still in somewhat of I daze I tried to fill the other orders of people sitting, or standing, at the bar.

The whole night, while I wasn't serving somebody, I glanced up to see her dancing. Almost every time she was dancing with somebody different, guys and girls. The way she flirted with both sexes I could just tell she was bisexual. Sometimes when I looked up she was dancing alone. Moving to the music, hips swaying to the beat, eyes closed in ecstasy and mouth up-turned in a slight smile. Every time she was alone, I wished I was out there dancing with her.

About three times she came back to the bar, each time ordering something different. I didn't talk to her though, because the reason she came to the bar was because a guy had offered to buy her a drink. I also noticed that guys (and some girls) and tried to write their numbers on her hand or arms. But since she was dancing so wildly, and becoming sweaty, they all wiped off. I couldn't help but feel relieved at this little detail.

By closing time the club had started to drain out. People were leaving to go home sleep off their hangovers. Cal came up to the bar just as the last person was leaving.

"How was your night?" I asked calmly.

"Wonderful," she grinned. I noticed that her eyes weren't bloodshot, and she hadn't stumbled or slurred her speech. Unlike the other ravers who had left the club, Cal was not plastered.

"You're not drunk?" I asked surprisingly.

"Don't act surprised! I only had that one drink, the first one I ordered. The rest of the ones I gave away."

"Really?" I chuckled.

"Yup, I don't like to drink that much," she said as she sat down on the bar stool. I was still wiping down the counters and cleaning up my mess.

"So...where do you live?" she questioned.

I spun my head to look at her, but didn't see anything unusual in her eyes.

"Upstairs," I stated.

"Upstairs? Above the club?"

"Yeah, free rent since I work here also. The other bartender lives with me also."

"Awesome!" she squealed.

"I know...So...where do you live?" I stared at her.

"About twenty blocks from here," she frowned. "What? Don't like your neighborhood?"

"Not exactly," she spat.

"West side of town? Seems pretty far..." I said, trying to change the subject. I could tell by the way she talked she didn't like to talk about her neighborhood.

"It is, specially if you're walking," she muttered.

Although she had said it softly I still heard it. There was no loud music drowning out her voice.

"You walked?" I asked amusedly.

"Uh huh," she said nonchalantly. Her eyes were focused on the floor. She must have wanted to get away from her house, or at least her neighborhood. I wonder if she fitted in where she lived. The west side of town was all fancy, and high-class. Which would explain her earlier look. But, why then, was she over here? On the north side? Were all the punk's, goth's, and just plain crazy people hung out.

"Hey..." she said, interrupting my thoughts. "Mind if I crash at your place? I don't feel like walking home."

I thought about suggesting I give her a ride, then I realized I didn't have a car to drive here there.

"Ummmm....well..." I mumbled. My apartment wasn't all that great. I'd feel embarrassed to show it to someone like her. A seemingly rich girl, who probably had been brought up in a decent, or at least clean, house

"Come on....please?" she pleaded. "If you're worried about me criticizing it, don't worry. Any place is better than going home right now."

Her words made me ponder how her life at home really was. After I few seconds I gave in.

"Oh...all right," I sighed. "You can stay the night."

"Thank you!" she shrieked. She threw herself over the top of the bar and gave me a massive hug. When she let go I stared at her, dazed. She had hugged me! Oh my Goddess...she had...For the second time, I mentally slapped myself. Get over her! She'll never like you like that!

"You gonna stand there all day? Or show me up?" she smiled.

"I can't believe I agreed to let you stay the night," I said as I headed towards the stairs.

"You don't like me?" she mock pouted.

"No, not really," I teased.

She slapped me playfully across the head and continued walking along side me. When we reached the apartment, I stopped. Taking a deep breath, I opened the door. She strolled through the door way, oblivious to the fact that I was shaking in anticipation. Please...I pleaded...don't let her hate it. Why was I worried about what she thought? I usually didn't give a rats ass what other people thought. Why was this girl so different?

Shaking my head, and gulping I followed her into the apartment.