On Christmas Day, the young girl and the drunkard joined Rosa and Victoria at Harris and Magnolia’s apartment in Bunker Hill. Harris felt sorry for the widower and his unattractive daughter, but Magnolia didn’t. She had heard too many horror stories about the man and the vicious little brat from the sisters; thus, she always ended asking the two of them to move to a place where they wouldn’t obstruct the traffic. Rosa reckoned that the best place for their Old Pa was on a chair next to the window. For their youngest sister, it was out in the corridor. More than once, dinner began and ended without either one at the table. The drunkard would have fallen asleep in his chair, and no one remembered to call the young girl, and she was too shy to come in and sit on her own. It was only after the last guest had left and they needed her help to clean o the table that someone remembered to call her.

“Your sister—what’s her name? Where is she hiding?”

It only seemed fair that she repaid for the invitation by helping Magnolia do the dishes.

As for Christmas presents, our little friend never got any.

“You never get nothing because you’re naughty,” Rosa teased her.

“Because you don’t say your prayers,” Victoria added, shuffling a new deck of cards they had received as a present.

“When you die,” Rosa continued, taking the deck from Victoria and offering it to her little sister to cut, “you will go straight to Hell. The goat will come and get you. You will burn for all eternity inside a pit of boiling pitch.”

“The Devil will come and fart on your face and cover you in vomit.”

“And we’ll go straight to heaven,” Rosa continued, putting down one half of the deck and revealing one card at a time from the other half.

“Because we repented, like Mami.”

“Because we believe in Jesus.”

“And in the Holy Trinity.”

“And in the purity of Virgin Mary—ah, the Hierophant!”

“Next to the Five of Pentacles. It means you’ll end up alone.”

“And in poverty.”

Bunker Hill

From a flight on the back of a goat to celebrate sin at a ball hosted by the Master of All Badness, to the smoky interior of the Gas House Café during a beat poetry reading; from a werewolf’s apartment in Bunker Hill, to the gaudy mansion of a closeted vampire, Love, or the Witches of Windward Circle is a wildly imaginative tale that spans five decades, connecting the otherworldly occult to the out-of-this-world bohemia of fifties Venice Beach.

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