It seems like Broomers have been making the rounds all over town. We hear about them at moldy old mortuaries, dirt riddled cathedrals, and dust stricken taverns. Just don’t expect them to come running when you need a cleanup at aisle ten. That’s because Broomer isn’t another word for janitor. It’s a pejorative for someone who practices witchcraft.
Young Wiccan Katerina Ashwood (Kat for short) coined the term. “’Ok broomer,’ was our way of brushing off witches who were stuck in the past.”
She gave an example, “Let’s say a crone finds us making a summoning circle in the field. She shakes her head and fetches a wheelbarrow full of goat skulls. She takes out a mallet and pounds the bones to dust. Then she scoops up the dust and fashions a summoning circle of her own.
One of the maidens sees what she’s doing and decides to show the crone what’s really going on. They climb up the hill. From there the crone can see the scale of our crop circle. She loses her shit. Here she was summoning a knee high imp and we’re down there raising a titan.
The crone puts her foot down, lectures us on the sovereignty of the ancient rites, and we turn around and go, ‘Ok broomer.’”
The term harkens to a time when witches rode broomsticks. When pointy hats flew across lunar backdrops and crones traveled in flocks. These days maidens travel in squadrons and they ride e-scooters.
“Scooters are less conspicuous and they have a little holder for your brew bottle.”
According to Kat Broomers are esoteric elitists. They believe magick is bestowed upon them by deities on the fringes of reality. Kat believes magick is more like the force, something to be channeled, a power that comes from within.
“Sure Broomer is ageist, but crones can be so strict. I didn’t see the harm in having little fun at their expense. That was until muggles started calling me Broomer on Twitter.”
Things got worse for from there. Wiccan maidens found themselves at the center of hate campaign. Their hidden sanctuaries were doxed. GPS coordinates for woodland shrines appeared up online.
Kat described rushing to her sanctum. “Someone had hung Blairwitch stick figures everywhere. Pissed in the offering bowl and wrote, ‘OK BROOMER’ all over the altar.”
Online harassment from muggles is nothing new forto Kat. This is just the first time she’s seen her own lingo thrown back at her.
“They used to say, ‘Ok Gretchen’ with like a hard G. Sometimes they’d call me a ‘Basic Bernadette.’ When I posted that I needed time offline they’d send wave emojis with ‘Bye Lucrecia’.”
So how did Broomer work its way into the muggle vernacular?
An in-depth search found the meme appearing on a witch-hunting message board. Witchfinder International is forum notorious for its calls to revive the inquisition. Users share interrogation fantasies that border on pornography. They hold mock witch trials for celebrities and exchange crucifix bomb making recipes.
Witchfinder International users make no distinction between esoteric orders and contemporary practitioners. They slap Broomer onto all pagan movements, but when they say it it’s full of sexist overtones:
“How do you sweep a Broomer off her feet? With an ax.”
“These Broomers should get back in the kitchen.”
“Broomers ought to ride this instead.” This was accompanied by a photo of a penis.
Kat scrolled through the examples we compiled and sighed. “Muggles used to use Broomer to describe an ice-curler. Now it’s their word to keep us down, like when white men discovered ‘Ok Karen.’ They just lost their fucking minds.”
In hindsight, the Broomer debacle has given Kat a greater appreciation for her elders. “I certainly got a taste of my own potion. It figures now I’m spending most of my time in the mountains with the crones.”
The Sisterhood of Cinders are teaching Kat the art of remote haunting, a form of astral projection once used to make conquistadors see ghosts.
Kat browsed the Witchfinder International board as she spoke. “Witches used to use remote hauntings to drive Kings to suicide, but I’ve got a more modern application I’d like to try it on.” She shut her laptop, backed out of the firelight, and wandered off laughing into the night.
Meet Noelle, a Hollywood transplant that’s been subsisting on instant ramen and false hope. She’s on the verge of moving back into her mother’s trailer when her agent convinces her to take a meeting at the Oralia Hotel. Enchanted by the art deco atmosphere Noelle signs a contract without reading the fine print.
Now she has one month to pen a novel sequestered in a fantasy suite where a hack writer claims he had an unholy encounter. With whom you ask? Well, he has many names: Louis Cypher, Bill Z. Bub, Kel Diablo. The Devil.
Noelle is skeptical, until she’s awoken by a shadow figure with a taste for souls.
Desperate to make it Noelle stays on, shifting the focus of her story to these encounters. Her investigations take her through the forth wall and back again until she’s blurred the line between reality and what’s written. Is there a Satanic conspiracy, is it a desperate author’s insanity, or something else entirely?