Ah, those good old Cape May days… by Jackson D’Catur
I AM not a fan of witches, as depicted in popular culture. The Cape May Coven were not notable for their foxy looks, elegant black clothing or charm. There was nothing of that Willow lass from Buffy about them, nor were vampires sparkly and urbane, nor werewolves handsome and rugged. In fact, not long after we rid this fair city of ours of vampires and weres, we were forced to tackle the Coven. The vampires were easy: all it took was the application of brawn, brains and a hundredweight of pointed sticks, plus an ingenious arrangement of mirrors on revolving poles that allowed me to bring a sunset from London to Cape May at the totally unexpected (for the vampires, at least) time of 3am. And the weres; well they were never very smart, and a trail of dog biscuits leading to the Concrete Ship (at that time afloat) did the trick. Afterwards, the ship was slipped from mooring and sank off The Point. I know, cruel, but really, werewolves were brutes, and made life hell through eating people, peeing on my rosebushes and digging holes in the lawn.
But the witches, oh they were smart. They posed as old herbal healers, kindly souls who lived in gingerbread houses and would aid someone in need. In fact they did all of that (except the houses were made from locally-sourced candy: ours had saltwater taffy bungalows) but it was all a front for their true, nefarious purpose. I was never sure, really WHAT their purpose was, but it was not wholesome, I was certain. And so we had the lot of them rounded up one weekend. They put up a fight: potions were thrown (three stout militiamen were turned into frogs, and one into a Wildwoodian), curses were hurled (Paddy Teague had terrible luck his whole life after, and died an impoverished, blithering, drunken Irishman. He swore none of this was the case before the curse), charms were slipped into drinks and thrown into eyes (a batch of love potions saw 12 constables marry each other all at once, with scant regard to sexual orientation, age or species). Also, a few members of the posse paused to consume the witches’ cottage and got sick from consuming too much taffy. Those old harridans were clearly evil in EVERY way, to build a house knowing it would tempt hapless mobs to eat parts.
Of course we flung the lot of them in a pond, and never looked back: best to be safe, I always say, even given a total lack of physical evidence. I do admit that public health has never been quite as good since, as modern medicine is yet to catch up to the standards of those witches, but it’s all to the good, I’m sure you agree.