Shit, I'm so goddamn slow at writing these days! I've been thinking about this story and planning it a lot but I just haven't gotten around to actually writing anything until now. I have big plans for this story so I guess I'll just have to make myself write. Because I'm a lazy asshole and otherwise I won't get anything done. Mainly I got this done because I'm in the US and my friend who I'm visiting works a lot so I have a lot of free time on my hands.

Anyways, second chapter of Witches Brew, hope you enjoy and please review! And if you spot mistakes or something, please tell me.

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I'm not sure if it was the slight creaking of the floor or the thirst that woke me up, but I woke up at 3:17, as the red numbers beside my bed told me. I lay there for a while, debating whether I should get a glass of water or just fall asleep again. I was already falling asleep again when I heard a soft thump and woke up again. I didn't think much of the noise, it was fairly normal to hear some thumps at night - as it was to hear bed springs creaking and someone shouting "Oh Joe, Joe, oh yes!" - but now, wide awake and feeling the thirst again, I kicked my blanket away and slipped my feet into the fuzzy bear slippers I always kept beside my bed - my floor was like ice on most mornings. Not bothering to turn on the lights because I knew my eyes would scream death, I stumbled into the hallway and through the living room into the kitchen. I fixed me a glass of water, added some ice for good measure, and wandered back into the living room, sagging into the armchair. Only then did I remember I had someone else in here, too, and turned to look at the couch - or bed, rather - to make sure I hadn't disturbed my guest. It appeared that wasn't even possible, since the bed was empty.

"Gabby?" I called out, wondering where she'd gone - maybe to the bathroom? But the door was wide open and there was nothing there - not even a light. She could have snuck past me into my bedroom while I was filling my glass but why on earth would she do that? Oh shit, she wasn't going to rob me, was she? What the hell was I thinking, letting some stranger into my flat! But she'd seemed so nice and trustworthy - and besides, I didn't hear any noise coming from my room. Abandoning the robbery theory I started looking around more. I rose from the armchair, swallowed the rest of my water and went to investigate more closely. From what I could see, she'd put her clothes back on - at least there was no pile of garments on the floor, bed, chairs or anywhere else, for that matter - but hadn't bothered to take off the camisole. That probably meant she was going to come back soon to sleep. Had she gone out for a cigarette? Yes, that must be it! She'd woken up, gotten a craving for some nicotine and gone outside for a smoke.

She probably didn't want to wake me up, so she snuck out. With a quick investigation I found out she'd snuck out of the window, left it barely open enough for her to open it again, and since my apartment was on the first floor, it wasn't that alarming. She was probably scared the door might accidentally shut itself - which was a fairly realistic fear since my door had the habit of randomly closing itself due to just a little bit of wind.

Content with my theory I took my keys, opened the door and stepped outside to tell her I'd leave a shoe between the door so she wouldn't have to climb through the window. What met, though, was just an empty street - no Gabby, no smoking, nothing. If she didn't go out to smoke why did she leave? It would be suicide to go out at this time of the night with no umbrella, no raincoat and no way to protect yourself. And what was it with me worrying over her, anyway? She was a big girl, she could handle herself. And if she couldn't, it would be her own fault, I thought while pushing the shoe inside and closing the door. I took a quick peek into the living room to make sure the window was slightly cracked and headed back to my bed.

-

Apparently Gabby could be really quiet when she wanted to be because the next time I woke up it was because of my alarm, not some shady thump. I rolled over, killed the alarm and sat up rubbing at my eyes. Mornings were killers, always, and sometimes I really hoped that I drank coffee because I would think the bitter taste of the beverage together with the caffeine would be able to wake me up properly. For now, though, I usually just went with a hot shower and a cup of tea.

I slipped on my slippers and wandered into my nice, turquoise bathroom. The colour scheme always seemed to cheer me up and it reminded me of the ocean so it was a great thing to see first thing in the morning. I checked to see if my towel was still hanging from the door when I remembered that I'd just washed all of my towels and stuck them into my closet in my bedroom. Grumbling, I turned around and started trotting down the hallway towards my bedroom – damnit, people shouldn't have to walk this much this early – when I bumped into something warm and boney. Right, Gabby.

"Mornin' sunshine!" Gabby's voice said in a happy, cheerful way. How could anyone be this bright in the morning? It should be against the law!

"Uh, g'morning," I grumbled, squinting my eyes to make some sense out of the blurry mess in front of me and rubbing at them a bit more when I remembered I'd forgotten to put on my glasses – usually I wore contacts but in the mornings, when my eyes were still asleep, I just couldn't handle them.

"So, I was just gonna go to the bathroom, it's that way, right?" the beige-and-red blob in front of me asked and I nodded.

"Yeah. Bathroom, there, enjoy, m'gonna get a towel, y'need one?" Yes, I didn't like to say complete words in the morning.

"Nah, I'm fine, just need to pee, is all," Gabby laughed and skipped – skipped! – to the bathroom. I stared at the closed door for a while, dumbfounded, when I remembered my quest for the towel and my glasses and dragged myself back into my bedroom to go through the mess in my closet.

-

After I'd enjoyed a hot shower, groomed my hair and put on my contact lenses, I felt like a human again as opposed to the Neanderthal I was earlier. I brushed my teeth, applied some deodorant and put on some make-up to make my eyes a bit prettier – luckily my skin was damn near perfect so I didn't have to bother with foundation or anything. And it wasn't that I felt I needed to beautify myself – at least I tried to convince myself and other people of this – but I just thought that if you can make yourself look a bit prettier with just a small amount of time and money, why not?

I wrapped myself up in my towel, gathered my nightgown from the floor and half-ran into my bedroom – I really should start taking my clothes into my bathroom because running around in a towel was cold!

I dug around my closet and found some black slacks and a green tunic to go with it – guess I was complimenting my eyes today. I ruffled my auburn locks around a bit and finally, after my thirty minutes long morning routine, appeared in the kitchen. Gabby was sitting on the couch in her clothes from yesterday sipping at a glass of water. She nodded to me.

"Mornin' again. Feeling a bit more awake, do you?"

"Yeah. Sorry, I'm not much of a morning person and I'm still feeling kinda sleepy. Tea will help with that," I admitted sheepishly while turning on my water boiler and measuring some tea into my tea pot.

"You should drink coffee, y'know. It really wakes you up. Like, poof, you're awake! Nicotine is pretty good at that, too, especially the nicotine rush you get in the morning cos' you haven't smoked in a while and your body graves and – sorry, I'm babbling, aren't I? I just get pretty hyper in the morning usually, especially if I haven't had any coffee. Withdrawal, y'know? Makes me fidgety, the same way too much coffee does," Gabby said or, as she conveniently put it, babbled. I understood about half of it – withdrawal, caffeine, nicotine, fidgety – so I offered her some tea. Gabby politely declined.

"Thanks for offering but no thanks. I'm really not a tea person. Guess that makes me kinda not English, huh? I'll just grab a to-go from a coffee shop," she said, managing to keep the babbling to the minimum this time.

I made some toast and sliced up some oranges to go with it for breakfast. Gabby, of course, said she wasn't hungry, at first, but after me telling her that breakfast was the most important meal of the day and a few pieces of toast didn't really cost that much, she took two slices of bread and half an orange.

"I'll pay you back, of course," she said while munching on her breakfast. "Or even better, I'll buy you food! See we get this employee discount at the store I'm working at so I can pick you up something, whatever you need. Okay?" I sipped at my coffee and nodded.

"Sure, that sounds good, yeah."

-

I gave Gabby a list of groceries I might need – milk, eggs, oranges, bread – and my spare key, making a mental note to remember exactly how she looked in case I would get robbed. Gabby didn't have to work until noon and she got off at four so we would probably be home around the same time but since I knew that I had English today and our professor would probably keep us in the classroom a bit longer than most professors, I thought it would be for the best.

After slinging a light jacket over my shoulders and grabbing my bag, keys and umbrella, I closed the door to my apartment behind me and started walking towards the university. It was a nice day, sunny and almost cloudless, and I couldn't help but feeling very optimistic. About school, about life, about Brad and even about Gabby. I just hoped I wasn't wrong about any of them and oh how wrong I was.