Old Black Maggie – Episode 24

Making Gary Count

Every time Gary had the opportunity he delved into the book. It was fascinating and intriguing. It was like being let into a secret world understood by few. Reading it had a profound effect on his thinking; he became convinced of witchery and its power. To Gary, it became more than superstition and old wives tales. He felt as though he possessed a special knowledge and understanding that allowed him to be wise and discerning in which ordinary things were not so ordinary, but the result of a hidden world.

A week after receiving the book he met Beez at the drugstore. They ordered their usual. Beez had a comic and Gary the Sporting News.

Beez leaned over to Gary. “How’s the book?”

“It’s incredible,” Gary said. “It’s hard to believe. If the things in that book weren’t possible witchcraft would have died off long ago.”

“I thought you might enjoy it,” Beez said. “Careful that you don’t get involved, I got it for you just to be informed.”

“You don’t have to worry about me,” Gary said, “I have no intention of becoming a warlock. It scares me. It’s given me ideas on how to identify the practice of a witch.

There is one thing that really scares me, Beez.”

“What’s that?” Beez said.

“Anyone knowingly aiding someone a witch’s targets are putting their own well-being at risk,” Gary said. “And, Beez, that’s you.”

“Like I said, Gary,” Beez said, “”Don’t worry about me, worry about yourself and your mom and dad.”

“Thanks, Beez,” Gary said. “I don’t know what I’d do without you.”

“I just want you and your family protected,” Beez said. “I’ve never met your mom or dad, but I feel like they are friends.”

“I’d like for them to meet you someday,” Gary said.

“I would like to,” Gary said. “But parents sometimes feel an instinctive jealousy when their children establish a relationship with another adult. They think the other adult is trying to take their child away from them. It’s an instinctual response and quite understandable. It’s best you and I remain friends.”

“You have such a good way of putting things,” Gary said. “You always think of the other person, never yourself. I hope I can do that someday.”
Beez smiled fondly. “Dear lad, you already have. You amaze me at how adult you are. You are concerned about everybody, but yourself.”

“I never thought of it that way,” Gary said.

“There may come a time or two you will have to consider yourself only,” Beez said. “That’s when you know you’ve reached maturity, to know when to put yourself first.

There will come tough decisions, but you’re coming to that point.”

“You talk to me like I’m somebody,” Gary said, “like I count.”



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