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cover of Three Sixes and a Forked Tongue or Cold Medicine and a Liar

Three Sixes and a Forked Tongue or Cold Medicine and a Liar, Fiction by James Tyler Toothman

millions of colors, December 2023

The year is 1971. Lost deep in the woods of West Virginia, a desperate young girl discovers a book of witchcraft and pledges herself to Satan. But the Devil’s checking into town, and he’s got something special in store for this new little witch.

When Black Lavender Luci, the Devil himself, rocks up to Clockmaker, West Virginia in a Rolls Royce Silver Wraith, wearing alligator boots, a chinchilla coat, Porkpie hat and a gold-plated grin, he’s got his sights on only one thing: fifteen-year-old Miss Priscilla Carpenter, the baddest witch in town. Tired of being on the receiving end of Old Red—her father’s favorite paddle—Priscilla doesn’t hesitate when she stumbles upon a book of witchcraft and stains the pages with her blood.

At first, signing her soul away to Satan was just an opportunity to have some fun, help the people she loves, and get a little revenge on the townspeople that turned their backs on her and her mother, Lavinia. Flanked by her childhood best friend Joseph and her loyal disciple Big Tommy, Priscilla makes her way through the increasingly demanding spells of her beloved grimoire. But when the Devil calls in his favor and seduces Priscilla deeper into the world of dark magic, drugs, and desire, she unwittingly unleashes a torrent of death on Clockmaker, causing dams to break, women to go missing, and rabbit piss to fall from the sky. And pretty soon, she finds herself the baby mama of Hell himself.