The Gypsy Witch, p.1Roberta Kagan
The Gypsy Witch
Copyright by Veronika Knight.
All rights reserved. Including the right to reproduce this book or portions thereof.
This is a work of fiction, although many factual historical events are depicted, any resemblance to any persons living or dead is purely coincidental.
For a people whose blood run’s through my veins and
Whose spirit lives within my heart…The Rom.
Zigeuya Chovinhani, Gypsy Witch
omance, mystery, and betrayal....
Set during the life time of Rasputin (the mad monk of Russia), and spanning across Siberia and Europe
Zigeuya Chovinhani is a sweeping tale of the Romany (gypsies), their magical ways and romantic customs.
Rasputin, known for alcohol abuse, tantric sex and womanizing is on his way to controlling the court of Russia by convincing the Czarina that he is the only one who can heal her hemophiliac son. But when he meets a young gypsy girl he learns that he is not the only one with magical powers. And women’s feelings should not be taken lightly.
If you are looking for a magical ride to glue you to your seat, Zigeuya Chovinhani the Gypsy Witch will not disappoint......
he time for secrets has ended. I can no longer protect you. I am dying."
Tired, her bones visible in her disease-ravaged body, the woman reached for her daughter's slender hand, remembering when hers had been small and delicate.
"Mother stop talking that way, you're not going to die....please"
"Shhh child, quiet, the time has come to listen."
Outside the autumn leaves covered the ground in a blanket of rich burgundy, burnt umber and pumpkin orange. The sun peeked through the already sparse trees shedding light across the earth.
Smiling, the woman began.
"I suppose the best place to start is at the beginning. My family was Lowara Gypsies. Although I was born in Romania we traveled all across Eastern Europe and Russia. My father was a famous horse trader, quite well known amongst our people.
The summer I was thirteen, we were in Russia on our way up through Siberia. With the harsh winter past, the flat land was covered in dense green forest. A group of young Arabian stallions, which my father hoped to acquire a good sum for, trotted along, hitched to the back of our wagon.
My father had a very fancy vurdun (a gypsy covered wagon that the gypsies use to travel around in) that was painted candy apple red with gold trim and pulled by two fine black saddle bred horses, the finest that we owned. Their thick manes and tails blew back as the wind ran through our wagon train. When we came into this little peasant village called Pokrovskoye that was right beside the Tura River. Our Kompania (a group of gypsies), consisted of at least fifty wagons.
The gage, which was anybody other than the gypsies, gathered around to watch as we rode in. They distrusted us, these peasants, but we brought color and life into their dull worlds and so they always waited with excitement for the Romany to come to town. I sat looking out the window as the horses hoofs kicked up the dust. I wore a bright blue and pink dress that fell off my shoulders and full at the bottom. The sun shown brightly and everything was illuminated.
During the day they shunned the Rom. But at night the women came for having their fortunes told, and the men gathered about our fires to listen to our violin music and watch the gypsy girls dancing.
Unlike some of the peasant villages we had been through, this one had houses. There were one and even two story homes beautifully decorated with very fancy carvings.
A gentle breeze caressed my face and the fresh air waltzed through my hair twirling seductively in my curls . Oh, I was quite the looker in those days, like you are now. I had a long thick raven colored mane and a slim but curvy figure, like yours.
In the square I saw a gathering.
I will never forget how I felt when I first saw him.
Oh child, he was something to see.
He was talking and waving his arms in the center of a good size crowd, a man of about twenty years. His black hair was long and uncombed, but he didn't seem to notice. And he wore a thick scraggly beard. Even from where I was I could see the deep, penetrating navy blue of his eyes. His arms flayed about as he was filled with passion and conviction. The very power of the man had a magnetic attraction and I saw it in the faces of all those surrounding him.
I could not hear what he was saying, so I just watched.
My father parked the wagon and I heard the familiar back and forth negotiations for the horses.
That night we made camp on the outskirts of the town right on the river. It was quite lovely because it was July and the night was not too hot.
My extended family lit our fires and began to cook. The smells were wonderful, as we always had fresh food. Many times it was stolen from the local gage, but sometimes it was given to us as gifts. Most of the men were good shots so the abundance of fresh kill was always available. My mouth watered as the pungent aromas of meat on the open fire filled the air. I should mention to you, so that you better understand your people, that the Roma never kill or take more than they can eat. There is no killing for sport amongst us.
That night, I can still remember it; we ate a meal of hedgehog, a favorite of everyone's. Then we built a large campfire and the women made a rich, strong, coffee with lots of sugar while the men drank brandy. We were joyful just to be alive.
The dancing and music went on late into the night and when exhaustion took over we lay our eiderdowns under the stars and slept. When the weather was good we always spent our nights in the open air. During the winter we settled in one place, rested in our wagons and longed for the time when we would hear our leader the Shero Rom yell "Good Road" and once again we would be traveling.
Perhaps it was two in the morning when I heard the faint sobbing. I awoke and sat up to see what was going on. There beneath a tree right beside our wagon was the man I had seen earlier in the square. I got up and although it was not really permitted for gypsy girls to have contact with men, I was so fascinated that I walked over to him.
He looked at me and I was glued to the ground by those eyes.
"Sit" he ordered, and I did.
I cannot express to you the power that this man’s magnetism held. He commanded and people obeyed. At that time, even I obeyed.
His name was Grigori Rasputin. He was a holy man, he said. Just having returned from a monastery at Verkhoture where he had studied with the Khlysty sect.
I asked him what that was and why he was crying.
He told me that he had seen me when we first pulled into town and he cried for my immortal soul. I listened fascinated and a little bit terrified too. I had never thought of such things.
In the Khlysty, he said sin could be obliterated through the expending of sexual energy.
Then he took me into his arms. I was weak under his spell. He had a power with women, one that would later serve to destroy him.
I was a virgin, and he was a powerful lover. Need I tell you more?
He ravaged my young body with a passion I could hardly resist.
I gave him my heart that night, and he took it without a thought. As, I would later learn, he had taken the hearts of so many.
What he didn't know, was that I was the "special one" the Zigeuya Chovinhani, the gypsy witch. But he was soon to find out.
was born into my magic, but he taught me to use the power of sex to enhance it. I came from a long line of witches. This you must know, you too, my love have the gift and the curse of sorcery.
I know my daughter that you find this strange that I should tell you such a thing, but it is something that you must know in order to understand what happened later.
Night after night we met in secret and we loved. How we loved.
When he told me that I could possess anything that I wished for, all I could think of that I had ever truly wanted was him.
As he held me in his arms and we joined together to become as one, the power of his lips devoured me. I was so lost and completely immersed in his touch that I could not perform the sex magic. When he was inside of me I could concentrate not at all. But still I believe that he came to love me as much as he could love anyone after himself.
Not all magicians or sorcerers have the same abilities. My strengths lie in the power to destroy or protect. I could, I knew, curse an enemy or bless a friend and my harm or protection would have a fierce effect.
Grigori was a healer.
It was in his hands. When he laid them upon someone in need he could end their ills and suffering.
I watched him once as a dog lay dying upon the street. It had been attacked by a larger animal and it writhed in pain. Dried blood crusted the coat of the poor creature’s abdomen.
Grigori rubbed his hands together and began to chant to himself. Then he put his hands gently upon the pup. I watched mesmerized as the animal responded coming back from a near death and walking away in perfect health.
My love for him grew in that moment.
I wanted to marry him. I begged him in fact, because I knew that our Kampania would be leaving Russia before the winter set in and I didn't want to leave without him.
I was only fourteen, he was eight years older.
When your family returns next year we will marry. He told me.
And I believed.
The morning that my father took his seat up at the front of our wagon and as he yelled out to the other families "good road", I watched through the window as Grigori stood on the side of the street. It was a dirt path really and the dust flew up as the horses trotted and the wheels turned and we began our journey out of Russia before the cold weather snapped her icy fingers paralyzing Siberia.
He tipped his hat to me and my heart leapt as we rounded a corner and I could see him no more. Memories of our love hurt deep in my stomach as I thought of his eyes and his skin and his hair. We were moving at a fast speed now. My parents were singing old folk songs in Romany and all of the families were glad to be traveling again. The mood was festive as it always was when we were moving, but this time I was filled with sadness.
We traveled through Romania and Poland, then through Germany and back again. My father worked the gage in all of the small towns trading horses and my mother read cards. I too read but my heart was still back with Grigori and I had lost my accuracy in fortune telling.
When we came back to Northern Russia and then up through Siberia the following year I was overcome with excitement as I waited to see him.
I was a year older. I studied myself in the mirror and I was pleased to see that I had matured. As we had traveled from town to town I saw how men looked at me as I danced illuminated by the glow of the campfire, and I knew that I was beautiful.
For a week I could not find him. I searched the entire town but did not speak or ask anyone. Finally I had reached the end of my patience and so I went into a local tavern, which gypsy girls did not do, and I asked the proprietor if he knew of a man called Grigori Rasputin. The tavern was dark and men sat together on wooden stools drinking vodka. They stared at me and the looks in their eyes told me that they harbored dark thoughts. I shook off the fear that I had allowed into my thinking and I waited for an answer.
Not only did the owner know Grigori, but he knew his wife and daughter.
I left the establishment in a daze.
Grigori was married.
I stumbled back to my father's vurdun and as the others slept in their eiderdowns under the stars I stayed inside and cried until I felt that I had no more tears. My throat ached.
I watched through the window until dawn, as the moon spread a light like a silver ribbon upon the flowered blankets strewn across the ground.
Grigori found me the following day.
I wanted to destroy him.
always kept a hunting knife secured beneath my blanket.
When I heard him approaching, and I had no doubt that it was him, I reached beneath the eiderdown and my fingers clutched the cool metal.
As he came closer my heart beat in rhythm with his footsteps. I had every intention of killing him.
Standing quickly with the knife in my hand, I raised it ready to plunge it deeply into his unfaithful heart.
He saw me coming at him. He did not move, in fact he didn't flinch. With his right hand he reached and took hold of my wrist. Fight as I might the knife dropped to the ground. With my fists I beat upon his chest as hard as I was able. Tears stung my eyes and covered my face, but still I fought. I continued to throw blows at him until he took me into his arms and I smelled that familiar smell of cinnamon that always surrounded him. Now I sobbed aloud in earnest as I knew that I would betray myself.
I could not resist him. He fixed upon me with those eyes as deep as the bluest ocean I had ever seen and then his lips warm as a sunlit summer day touched upon mine. All fight left my body. I wanted him. How I had longed for him and now he stood before me.
He knew instinctively how I felt. I could not see, my eyes blurred and the world spun around outside of the circle that became us. I cried out when he entered me, for this time it was different. This time I knew that I would bear his child. I felt the life enter my body as his sperm found my waiting, longing egg. He gave me life and our bodies formed together as one to bring forth another.
After it was over and I lay in his arms, both of us temporarily spent, I asked him why?
He told me that he had married her because he had not believed that I would ever come back. I knew he lied to me, but I wanted to believe him and so I did.
By the end of August, I knew that I was right. My monthly blood had not come for ten weeks. I was with child.
I was sure that my father would be furious. He might tell me to leave his vurdun. After all I could not bring a good bride price anymore. I was a woman who had been spoiled, no decent man of the Rom would want me now.
Strangely enough my father cried when he learned of my plight. I almost wished that he would hit me or holler but he didn't. He just stood looking out over the river as we sat on the bank, shaking his head. Tears spilling simply from his eyes like the raindrops in a summer shower. I had hurt him terribly and that was far worse than hurting myself.
"Stay here. I will put you up in a room" Grigori told me when he learned that we were to have a child.
I knew he was married and that I would never be more to him than a whore, but I still chose to stay. It was when my father learned that I would not be moving on with the Kompania, that he became angry. Not at me but at Grigori. He took his pistol and in spite of my pleading he went off to find my lover.
Fear took over my entire body. I tore at my hair. My mother screamed with worry. If he shot Rasputin, my father would be executed by the gage. We were both sure of this. Sweat poured down the front of my dress as I faced anxiety like I had never known. Ashamed I could not face my mama, for it was not my father's well being that concerned me, it was Grigori's.
I had no choice but to use my most powerful gift.
And so...... with all of the heart that I had I threw the strongest spell of protection upon Rasputin.
He could not be killed, not as long as this magical blanket I had laid upon him continued to cover him. Only I could lift the spell, an
I was in a room at a cheap hotel when I faintly heard the caravan as it pulled out of town. My father's voice haunted me as unenthusiastically he said "good road". I looked around at the single bed and the tiny well worn dresser and I knew that I would miss the open road, but not enough to give up what I so adored.
I was so young and so foolish. I could not see beyond my love for this magical man and so for a while I was happy. He came to me at least twice a week and when he was not with me, I knew he was at home with his wife. Somehow I had become used to her. She no longer bothered me.
When he came we laughed and we loved. He was very excited that I was with child. I became large and my belly button stuck out. This made him laugh and so it made me laugh also. My breasts were heavy and he said that when the child was born he would drink from one and the baby would nourish itself from the other.
The Gypsy Witch by Roberta Kagan / History & Fiction have rating 4 out of 5 / Based on32 votes