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The Midnight Secret

The Midnight Secret

Rite World: Lightgrove Witches 4

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A sassy witch, a charming warrior, and a dark secret …

Main Tropes

  • Forbidden Lovers
  • Reluctant Protagonist
  • New Magic
  • Magic and adventure
  • Dark Secrets
  • Urban Fantasy
  • Slight Academy Setting
  • Cameos from Rite World Characters


A sassy witch, a charming warrior, and a dark secret …

Things are spiraling out of control around Hazel.First, she joins the Lightgrove Coven as an apprentice, then she is capture by the Brotherhood of Purity, next she’s being hunted by the dark witches.

And when things didn’t seem they could get worse, the Lightgrove witches believe Hazel aided a dark witch in escaping and are now hunting her too!

At least three new allies reveal themselves and help guiding Hazel—and Sean—in these new, murky waters.

Moreover, they finally reveal the truth about Hazel and why everyone seems to be after her.

Though at this point, Hazel believes some secrets are better kept untold.

The Midnight Secret is the fourth book in the Rite World: Lightgrove Witches series—full of magic, romance, mystery, and excitement! Grab your copy today and start this new adventure!

Intro into Chapter One

Chapter One

I didn’t sleep after that. How could I? No, instead, I texted Sean, but of course, at three in the morning, he was fast asleep.

I paced my bedroom, the panic barely contained, and tried to think.

All right, what did I know so far?

1) The Brotherhood was up to something. I had seen them at Towland. They had captured me, thinking I knew where Arianna’s grimoire, necklace, and ashes were.

2) Arianna’s familiar, Shade, had helped Sean save me from the Brotherhood. He said I couldn’t trust anyone and that he would be back.

I snorted. He wouldn’t come here to talk to me, and … why me? Couldn’t he choose a more powerful witch?

And that lead to:

3) The magic around my magic, keeping it contained. No one else but Moira and I knew about it, at least not in this castle. She had told me to not tell anyone about it, and I had done what she said. Why? It wasn’t like I trusted the woman. Perhaps I should tell someone. The council, the queen. If they knew, maybe they could help me.

Or not, since now: 

4) The queen and the council thought I had aided the dark witch in escaping the dungeon, and because of that, I was a prisoner in my bedroom.

I wondered if they had caught her. Imprisoned her again. Killed her.

And let’s not forget about:

5) The dark lightning. I had seen it a total of three times, but there could have been more that I didn’t know about. And there were the runes. Each time, I had seen a different rune.

I sat down at my desk and drew the latest rune alongside the others in my notes. With everything else happening, I had long since abandoned my research, but maybe now was the time to find the underlying cause of this.

I turned the page and jotted down quick notes about everything happening and then stared at it, trying to see some connection between it all. There had to be. If there wasn’t anything between all the five items, then at least two or three. It couldn’t all be a coincidence.

Early morning, breakfast was brought to me. Rodd wasn’t at my door anymore, but two other Light Order warriors were. I asked them if the dark witch had been captured but they didn’t answer me.

I was munching on my bagel with cream cheese when my phone rang.

“Hi,” I said, dejected.

“What the fuck happened?” Sean sounded furious.

Well, I had sent a text to him at three in the morning saying I had become a prisoner.

I told him what I knew so far, and I also told him about my notes. “I’m trying to see where they all link together.”

“There might be no link between them all.”

“I know, but I’m here, without anything to do, sleep-deprived, without any news, and my mind is way too active.”

Sean sighed. “Maybe if I could see those notes. I’m a visual guy.”

My heart squeezed. “I can take a picture of the pages and send them to you.”

“That would work.”

I quickly took pictures of my notes and sent them to him. “You can look at them later, when you’re not busy. No rush.”

“Of course we’re in a rush, we need to figure this out quick.” He paused. “I’m supposed to move there tomorrow. Maybe I can talk to Fynn, and he’ll let me come today, then I can talk to you face-to-face.”

“No one is talking to me, not even the Light Order warriors guarding my door.”

“Shit, that’s insane. You’re not dangerous!”

“I feel like I should take that as an insult.”

He chuckled. “I meant you’re not evil. I bet you can be dangerous when you want.”

A small smile adorned my lips. “That’s better.” A knock came from my door, and I stood at attention. A second later, the door opened, and Moira stepped inside. “Sean, Moira is here. I’ll call you later.”

I didn’t wait to hear his answer. I turned off the call and faced Moira.

She looked around at my room, then finally her eyes settled on me. I had changed from my pajamas to leggings and a comfy sweater, but I was barefoot, and had no makeup on. Her gaze shifted to the desk behind me, where all my notes and drawings were spread out in plain sight.


Thankfully, she returned her eyes to mine. “How are you?”

I scoffed. “Are you serious?”

She nodded. “I thought you would like to know the witch is still at large and the Light Order and the elite witches are out looking for her.”

I crossed my arms. “Why are you telling me this? Do you also think I helped her and you’re trying to get something from me? Newsflash: I didn’t help her. I have no idea why she came to see me before escaping.” I still couldn’t shake how terrifying it had been to wake up with her on top of me. “I don’t know how to prove my innocence.”

“I don’t know if you can.”

I balked. “W-what?”

She let out a long breath. “Hazel, it’s dangerous right now. I’m working on a way of getting you out of here. And—”

I took a step back. “Getting me out of here?”

“Yes. You can’t stay here. We need to—”

“You’re asking me to run as if I were a criminal? I won’t do that!”

“I know you’re not a criminal, but if you stay here—”

“Do you even hear yourself?” I was appalled. I never expected this from Moira. “And even if it made sense, I wouldn’t go with you. I don’t trust you!”

Moira glared at me, her fists clenched. “You don’t have a choice!”

“Excuse me? If I say I won’t go, I won’t go!”

She groaned. “Hazel … something is going on, something big, and we need to act before it happens.”


“I don’t know, not everything, I can’t—” She clamped her lips, shaking her head once. “It doesn’t matter. As your mentor, it’s my duty to make sure you’re safe and the only way for you to be safe is to get out of here as soon as possible.”

“You never wanted to be my mentor. You have detested me since the moment I set foot in this castle. I really doubt you want me to be safe.”

“By the light.” Moira ran a hand down her face. “I won’t argue anymore, Hazel. Prepare a small bag. When I come back, we’re leaving. Be ready.”

I opened my mouth to tell her no but decided against it. The woman sounded crazy, so I let her go on with her delusion. It seemed she wouldn’t take no for an answer, so I let her believe I would comply. The next time she came, I would yell for the guards outside my door.

She marched out of my bedroom as fast as she had come in, and I sat down at my desk, still shaken by the brief exchange.

There was one thing I knew: If I ran, then the council would assume I was guilty. The Light Order would hunt me, and things would only go downhill from there.

I wasn’t willing to follow that path.

* * *

I didn’t know what to do with myself. Being in my room, with only my phone to text Sean, was boring as hell. I paced around the room, I stared out the window at the endless green landscape behind the castle, I lay in bed and tried to nap.

At noon, I was brought lunch. Again, the Light Order guards handed me the trays and didn’t talk to me or answer my questions. I didn’t see Rodd or Fynn anymore, and no one else came to see me.

In the middle of the afternoon, I was brought a snack and this time, it came with a known face.

“Marjorie,” I said in surprise as the witch walked into my room with a tray.

I had barely seen her around the castle since I had joined the initiate program. I had heard that, as the queen’s daughter, she was kept busy, even if she was too young to be part of the council yet.

In the back of my mind, I knew she was Fynn’s sister, but I still had trouble connecting the two. I had never seen them together and Fynn never talked about her.

“I thought you could be hungry.” She set the tray on my desk and gestured for me to close the door. “How are you?”

I frowned. “Hm … not very well. Haven’t you heard? I’m practically a prisoner here.”

She nodded. “I know. We’re investigating, and hopefully, everything will be sorted out soon.”

“Can you share any details of what’s going on? Was the witch captured? What did she say?”

“Despite being the queen’s daughter, I’m not privy to any information. I’m sorry.” She tilted her head. “But I wanted to ask you … do you have any idea what the dark witch wanted with you?”

I opened my mouth, closed again. “I don’t think she wanted anything. She didn’t ask for anything, she didn’t say anything.” That was a shitty lie. “I really don’t know.”

“What about the dark lightning? What do you know about that?”

“Nothing.” I considered for a moment and decided to be honest. “I was curious, though, and did some research, but didn’t find anything.”

“I see.” She frowned. “Isn’t it odd that all of these things are happening now?”

“Now as in …?”

“Now as in after you joined.” Marjorie’s frown deepened. “There’s something off here, Hazel. I can’t put my finger on it, but I’ll certainly find out what it is.”

I gaped at her. Wow, the sweet young woman who had welcomed me into the coven was gone, replaced by a young witch who was dying to let her claws out.

“Well, if you do, please share. I’m dying to know too.”

She watched me for a second too long, then smiled at me—a wide, fake grin. “Anyway, I hope you enjoy your snack.” Marjorie gestured to the tray in my desk, then headed to the door. “See you soon, Hazel.”

She left and I stared at the door for a moment. What the hell was that? It felt like Marjorie knew more than she was telling me, but she was also baiting me to tell her more … and I didn’t know anything!

Frustrated, I only nibbled at one of the three chocolate chip cookies she had brought.

When the sun started its slow descent beyond the horizon, I stared at my phone. My internet had been disconnected as soon as they told me I was in lockdown, so I couldn’t watch Netflix or browse social media. But I could still text and call. I had been texting Sean here and there. He had told me he called Fynn, but they weren’t answering him either, and when he tried coming into the castle through the antique store, he was told he had to wait until tomorrow.

I could call my mother. Did she know what was going on here? That the coven she idolized so much was keeping her daughter prisoner? If she knew, she would have called me already, wouldn’t she? And if she didn’t know, then I wouldn’t be the one to tell her. I didn’t want to worry her.

But I wanted to hear her voice.

“Hazel!” she answered with a chirpy tone after two rings. “How are you doing, sweetie?”

“Hey, Mom. I’m … good. How are you?”

“I’m fine. I’m fine. I was about to start dinner. Your sister is out with a friend, and I’m all by myself. Why don’t you tell me how things are going while I cook? I bet it’s wonderful and I want to hear all about it.”

I suppressed a sigh. I didn’t want her to know how frustrated I was, and for some reason, I hated shattering the image she had of the Lightgrove coven.

“Everything is great,” I lied, feeling like the worst daughter ever. I spun things around, embellishing them a little—all right, a lot. I even told her about Sean, but I lied he was already in the Light Order and we had met here.

A hole would appear under my feet and hell would swallow me whole at any second.

“They are calling us for dinner, Mom,” I lied again. “I have to go.”

“Of course, sweetie. Have a great night.”

“You too.”

I hung up and my sadness and despair only grew. What the hell was I doing? 

And how would I fix this mega problem I was in if I couldn’t speak with anyone?

Like an answer to my prayers, a knock came from the door and Grace’s head popped in. “Hi, there. May I come in?”

I almost rolled my eyes at her. “Of course.”

She stepped into the room and closed the door behind her. Her snake was nowhere in sight. “I wanted to see how you’re doing?”

A lump rose in my throat and my eyes misted over. “Not so great.”

She nodded, walked over to me, and gave me a hug. “I’m so sorry about this mess, my dear.” She pulled back but didn’t let go of my hands. “As you can imagine, things are crazy right now. We haven’t captured the witch yet and—”

“I didn’t help her escape!” I blurted out. “I … I went to see her, but she was so well protected. I asked a few questions, she didn’t answer, and I walked away. That was it. Why she asked for me yesterday and how she escaped, I have no idea.”

She squeezed my hands. “I know, my dear. I believe you. The council wants to believe you too. Most of us vouch for you, but I’m afraid until we capture the witch or find concrete proof otherwise, you’ll remain in this room … I’m so sorry.”

I blinked, pushing the tears away. “Right now, I’m glad you believe in me, and that you’re on my side.”

“I’m sure we’ll figure something soon and you’ll be let out. You know what? I’ll talk to the council. We’ll arrange a better place for you to stay while you wait. Maybe a suite with a living room, a TV, and even a kitchen so you can cook something for yourself if you want. Does that sound good?”

It wasn’t what I wanted, but it was better than nothing. “It does.”

She gave one last squeeze of my hands then let them go. “Then hang on for now. Dinner will be here soon. Hopefully before bedtime, I’ll come to get you and take you to better accommodations.”


“My pleasure, dear.” She offered a smile before leaving my bedroom.

I sat on my bed, a little relieved. If Grace, a council member, was on my side, things would be okay. Everything would work out.

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