This one is dedicated to Timothy, who unknowingly inspired me and kept me up all night writing it.

Descending in silence to the sacred circle I could feel the air around me tingle and pulsate with energy. Glancing around us at the dark forest a tremor of fear ran through me and I stumbled over a fallen branch. My sharp intake of air and the sound of my feet shuffling in the leaves caused you to pause and turn to face me. A scowl hid the concern you felt, and I nodded in answer to your unspoken question. The dark forests have never terrified you as they have done me and as I shakily regain my balance we travel onward. I follow your steps more closely than before and my eyes never leave your heels as we make our way along the sparse trail.

Your deep green robe seems murky and threatening in the dark. The light from the single candle I carry does little to dispel the nervous tension I feel. I focus my eyes briefly on the cord wound around your waist, a symbol of your power and wisdom, and then the back of your cloaked head as we duck around branches and dodge fallen logs and holes. Your confidence is evident and you stride purposely forward. We walk deeper and deeper into the dense woods for what seems like an eternity. Every so often there is a sound from the deep woods around us and I start, pausing to search in vain for it's source, but I do not linger long for fear of falling to far behind you.

When at last we reach the edge of the clearing you motion for me to sit, and wordlessly reach for the pack I had been carrying. As you move into the clearing I settle to the ground cross legged and place my small candle on the ground before me. My back is to the sacred grounds to keep me from becoming distracted. "Now is the time, now is the hour" I chant softly to myself. Allowing my eyes to close I can feel the energies from the great mother pulsating beneath me. Warm and fertile, a small comfort in this dark night.

As the earth energies begin to rise through my body I feel that connection that had brought me this pivotal moment in my life. I take into myself the white light of purity she offers me and I revel in the sheer bliss and harmony before allowing the waves to wash back over me and reenter her body. Striving as you have shown me to do, to keep some of the energy for the upcoming ritual.

Your voice comes to me. Softly at first and then more powerfully resonating, commanding attention as it carries through the sacred clearing and you cast the magic circle.

"Tides of the season ebb and flow. From springs first light to autumns glow. Deosil around from birth to death." I can see your every movement and gesture in my mind as you begin to pace the circle, calling forth a sanctuary between the worlds. "Legends, myths and lore connect." You are back at the northern most point of the circle. "Solar fire and suns bright burning." I hear you light the circle fire. "Purify the great wheel turning. Winds of the North carry the flame. The mists of eons call the name. Samhain." I know you are once more walking the circle, the triple casting almost complete. You pause at each quarter as you call the direction. "East and South, the West inspires! Energy spirals even higher!" I know you have once again returned to the north and you pause before the final circle is cast. "The circle rises and marks rebirth. As seasons change and kiss the earth." You have completed your last circuit of the circle and have assumed the goddess position as you end the ancient invocation. "From seed and plough to harvest home, to starry vault and standing stone. This sabbat circle thrice about. I seal thee now from sky to ground." I hear your sword as it pierces deep into the earth on the final word. Sitting as still as I can, fighting the urge, the draw to the powerful sanctuary you have created for us.

Shivering in anticipation I hold my breath waiting for your commanding words to call upon the quarters. "Hail to the Guardians of the Watchtowers of the East. I Timothy, Priest and Witch, do summon and call ye forth to witness this rite and protect this sacred space." The calling of the Watchtowers has never failed to fill me with a sense of awe and reverence. I listened as you called forth each guardian, building the magic circle and making it stronger.

I close my eyes and meditate on the ritual I am about to take part in. What it means to me to become a witch. You have trained me as a servant to the lord and lady and now it is time. Your words come muffled to me as I try and relax, concentrating.

"Let there be none who suffer loneliness, none who are friendless and without brother or sister. For all may find love and peace within the circle. With open arms the lord and lady welcome all. I bring the gods news of one who has traveled far, seeking that which we enjoy. Long has been her journey, but now she feels an end is near. I speak of she, who even now waits outside this temple, seeking entry. She has come of her own free will and she seeks to become one with the Lord and Lady. I as her teacher, have shown her the ways, pointed her in the right direction and set her feet upon the path, but it is she who has chosen to take this step and now bid you gain her entrance."

My heart began to pound. You, my Master, is conversing with the gods and asking them that you may open their temple to me. I hold my breath awaiting a sign of their approval. When I hear you move to the eastern most point of the circle I know I was granted favor. I take a few steadying breaths as I hear your foot steps approach.

Your smile helps to vanquish my fears as you hold out your hand and help me rise. Standing before you with bowed head, you reach for the ties that hold my cloak together. I know I am trembling and I am glad your fingers are steady as you pull the knot loose and my cloak falls to the ground and surrounds my feet in a velvet pool of black and purple. Lifting my chin with your hand you look deep into my eyes and I can not shake the thoughts of how handsome you are with the fire light casting shadows across your face, but you're clear blue eyes hold a strange glow and I can not break away from your gaze. The spell is not broken until the blind fold is placed over my eyes.

My world is very dark now as not a speck of light slips through and I feel a bit disoriented. I jump a little at the feel of your hands on my shoulders and you are turning me to face away from you. Your hands are warm but chill still creeps over me as one hand slides down my left arm and grasps my wrist, placing it behind my back. The soft cord slides over my skin like a silken snake and then it constricts as you tie a knot. Placing my right hand over my left you secure them tightly. The ends of the cord are brought up over my shoulders and cross the front of my neck before you tie a bow at my right shoulder. I am trembling violently now, and the ends of the cord gently tickle my bare skin, but your hands are reassuring, and you rub my arms briefly before lifting my almost burned out candle and leading me from the woods and into the clearing.

Deprived of my sight and unsure of the footing I step a little hesitantly at you side, but I soon take courage that you will not lead me astray and follow you confidently. Your hand leaves my arm, and I feel the sleeve of your cloak brushing against my naked body as you open the doorway to the circle and I shiver, goose flesh standing over my skin.

The sound of your voice rivals that of the roaring cannon as you announce to the gods. "I have returned with the one who wishes to join our number."

"My name is, Brenda." I swallow hard trying to force the nervousness from my voice. "I beg entry"

"You who stand, at the boundary between the world of men and the real of the spirits." I know you are addressing me now. Your voice still holds the commanding magical tone that enchants the soul. "How do you come to this Circle?"

"With Perfect love and perfect trust."

Gently I feel your lips brush my own, a shiver races down my spine, before you lead me into the circle and you pause to close the doorway you made for us to enter through. Slowly we walk the circle, spiraling ever closer to the altar, your rich voice chanting the ancient rune. "Eko Eko Azarack, Eko Eko Zomelak." With each step we take ever closer to reaching the center I can feel the air around me virtually humming, snapping with the power you are raising.

When we reach the center and stop I know that we are now standing before the altar. There is a whooshing sound in my ears as my heart pounds wildly. There is a new silence in the night. It is as if everything is holding its breath, even the fires crackle seems softer almost as it was whispering.

You move silently from my side and your voice seems to come from all directions at once. "Brenda, why do you come here?"

"To worship the gods in whom I believe and to become one with my brothers and sisters of the craft." I am a bit startled as the words flow effortlessly from me. The nervousness melts away and only confidence in me and my gods is left.

"What do you bring with you?"

"I bring nothing but myself, naked and unadorned." I reply.

You move back to me and the sweet smell of sage and frankincense meets my nose as you pass the censor around my body. I breathe deeply of the magical smell. I can hear you replace the sensor to the altar and I jump a little as the cool oil is applied to my brow. But the cool feeling is soon replaced with a deliciously searing heat that makes my whole body vibrate and tingle.

"I now speak for the Lord and Lady." Your voice breaks the light trance I seemed to have slipped into. "Why are you here?"

"I am here to become one with the Lord and the Lady, to join in worship of them."

"Who made you come here?"

"None made me come, for I am here of my own choosing."

"That you may start life afresh it is only meet and right that you start with a name of your own choosing. Have you such a name?"

"Yes, I have."

"By what name do you stand before the Gods?"

"Aideen Moonshadow."

"Then you shall be known by that name henceforth, by your brothers and sisters of the craft."

"Aideen Moonshadow, do you wish an end to the life you have known so far?"

"I do."

"Aideen Moonshadow, are you prepared to undergo the ordeal?"

"Yes, I am."

"Then so be it!" I could feel you move around me to the right and then you were behind me. Lifting my hair from the back of my neck you seemed to caress the long reddish blonde strands before slicing a lock free with your athame. Your fingers trailed across my shoulders and I shivered as you continued around my left side to toss the hair into the fire. I could smell the harsh scent of burning hair for an instant, but then you were back at my side.

"Are you ready Aideen." You voice is soft and compassionate in my ear.

I try and force myself to relax, but I am tense. "Yes Master Timothy." I reply my voice barely a whisper in the still night. The first lash of the scourge on my back catches me off guard and I jump forward drawing in my breath in a sharp rush. It is quickly followed by two more lashes. The lengths of the scourge seem to wrap around my back and shoulders, a vicious biting caress.

There is a pause and I try and steady myself. My heart is pounding in my ears and I am panting. My body tenses again in anticipation of the next series of lashes. Seven more times the scorge bites into my back, leaving me light headed and swaying slightly on my feet, before there is another pause. The space of thirteen heartbeats passes before I am once again at your mercy. Each thong of the scorge feels like fire on my already red and lash marked skin. Nine more times it falls before you pause for the last time.

I am shaking but I stand bravely before you. Breifly I wonder at your thoughts, but the final series come to quickly for me to ponder anything. Three more lashes, then nine more, on the tenth lash the scorge cruely caresses my shoulder and one straying thong reaches to my breast. I whimper loudly as the tears begin to spll down my cheeks. I have lost count and I try in vain to controll the sobs that threaten to escape. The last and twenty first lash leaves me breathless, and I shiver swaying unsteadily as I gasp for air. My skin is burning and the cool night air brings no releif, only makes me ever more aware of the welts that criss cross my back, shoulders, my bound arms and wrists. I feel your hands gently cup my face and I jump startled at the sudden feel of their warmth. You kiss my eyes gently before your lips land softly onmy tembling lips. "You did good Aideen." You whisper before kissing my lips one last time and moving away.

I stand silently for a few moments, getting a better grasp on my breathing and my composure. The pain begins to fade to a steady burn and then that too seems to ease.

"Aideen Moonstorm, do you sware to keep the secrets which will be revealed to you this night within this Circle?"

My body trembles as does my voice, but the words are strong and sure. "I do."

"Do you promise to honor and defend the Mighty Ones whom you will come to know in our ancient faith."

"I do."

"And do you sware to assist and defend your sisters and brothers in the faith?"

"I do."

"Aideen repeat these words of oath."

"I Aideen Moonshadow, before the ancient Goddess, And her beloved consort, Do solemnly sware." A new courage fills me as I follow your words and speak the oath. "To keep the secrets of the Craft, and to honor the Lord and Lady always, and I understand full well, that should I betray this oath, I ahsll be shunned by my sisters and brothers in the faith, and the mighty Gods themselves, shall turn their backs on me."

The deeply profound meaning of the words vibrate within my soul as you place your hands on my shoulders. "Well said! Let your bonds be loosed that ye may be reborn. Live Aideen and face those whom you seek." You whisper for me to close my eyes and untie the blindfold. "Now will you see the world for the first time. As it truly is, a place of Magick, beloved by the Gods." I open my eyes slowly and look around the circle. The firlight dances on the trees which surround us. I want to see your face, but you are standing behind me still and my gaze falls upon the god and goddess statues that sit in places of honor upon the stone altar. "Behold, in these two images do we see the gods. And in that know that we are the same. As we need the gods, so do the gods need us."

Your hands brush my shoulder as you untie the cord. The silken snake slides from my throat and then releases my hands. "Now do you leave behind the death of your former life. From this night onward, you walk the hidden path of the ancient ones." You hold the cord out in front of me and the end falls to the ground. While I watch your movements I sneek a glace at your face and your eyes, dark blue with pride. "Now do I take your measure." You fold the cord in half and cut it in two with your athame. "Now do I cut the cord with which you were bound in the mundane world." Your athame slices easily through the material, and your eyes meet my own. "And in so doing, I give you new life."

I can no longer conceal the shaking of my hands as I reach out and take the cord from you. "With this cord which is my full measure I am bound to none but the Mighty Gods." I wrap the cord around my naked waist and knot the ends together. You offer me your arm and I gently place my hand on it and let you lead me around the circle.

Pausing at the Eastern point as you address the watchtowers. "Harken, all ye at the East Gate. Here is one who would join us. Welcome her and bring her joy. Guide and protect her, and inspire her with ancient wisdom." A small breeze seemed to jump up and stir around me, starting at my ankles and whirling around my body, caressing my face and tugging my hair. Smiling I lift my face to the tender caress of Air. I feel your body move next to mine as you salute the Eastern Quarter and then you gently guide me to the Southern point where we pause once again.

"Harken, all ye at the South Gate. Here is one who would join us. Welcome her and bring her joy. Guide and protect her, and set her heart ablaze with the joy of magic." A delicious warmth crept up my feet and legs, and as it seemed to envelope my body it grew in intensity until it blasted up over my head. A light sheen of sweat glistens on my skin and I shiver with the rush of emotion I feel. Once more you move in salute to the Southern Quarter, and then guide me to the Western Point.

"Harken, all ye at the West Gate. Here is one who would join us. Welcome her and bring her joy. Guide and protect her, and and sooth her spirit with intuitive knowledge of eternal life." A cool breeze stirred up and brought me the smell of the ocean. I took a deep breath and sighed a feeling of going home washed over me reminiscent of the town I vacationed in as a child. A feeling of immense wisdom and insight filled me lifting me to heights never before felt. Your robe brushed against my bare arm sending a new tremor through my body, as you moved in salute to the Eastern Quarter.

We moved silently to the Northern point. "Harken, all ye at the North Gate. Here is one who would join us. Welcome her and bring her joy. Guide and protect her, and nurture her with well being in the physical world." The earth felt warm on my bare feet as it began to pulsate and fill me with a sence of belonging, of being welcomed home. You salute the Northern Quarter and then we return to the altar.

"Shining Spirits of the upper reaches. Welcome out new sister and show her the ladder to higher realms and shimmering places of enchantment. Shadowy Spirits of the underowrld, welcome out new sister, and show her the way between the worlds to the places of the ancestors."

"I am he who speaks for the God. Yet you and I are equal." You lean forward and kiss my cheek.

"I am she who speaks for the Goddess. Yet you and I are equal." I lean forward and kiss your cheek.

"I salute the Lord and Lady, as I salute those who represent them. I pledge my love and support to them and to my brothers and sisters of the Craft."

"You know the Rede?"

"I do, An'; it harm none, do what thou wilt."

"And do you abide by that Rede?"

"I do."

"Well said!"

I watch as you pick up the bottle of anointing oil. "With this oil I anoint and cleanse thee, giving new life to one of the children of the gods." You use the oil to draw a solar cross on my forehead, a pentacle on my chest, and then a triangle starting at my pubis and up to my right nipple over to the left nipple and returning to my pubis. I shiver sensuously as your fingers brush my neatly trimmed mound and then each nipple.

You embrace me warmly and placing a hand on each shoulder you look deep into my eyes. "Now you are truly one of us. As one of us will you share our knowledge of the gods and of the arts of healing, of divination, of magic an of all the mystic arts. These shall you learn as you progress. But, I caution you ever to remember the Rede. An' it harm none do as thy wilt."

I salute you and you take me into your arms, kissing me deeply. My body responds instantly to yours as you wrap your arms around my waist and caress my back tenderly. I lean closer to you, my body molding to yours and I can feel your hard cock pressing against me through your robes. I moan softly as you deepen our kiss and suck on my tongue and gently nip the barbell that sits in its center.

Our deep sensuous kiss presses us farther back until I am leaning against the altar. I scoot back up onto the altar opening my legs wide as you step between them. The cool stone slab is a sharp contrast to the heat welling up in my body. Wrapping my legs around your waist I pull your close to me. Smiling as you look deep into my eyes I can't surpass the small giggle that escapes. You have that enchanting look that holds my gaze and captures my soul.

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