His hands were her favorite. They were hands that were made to create, elegantly curved yet calloused from all manner of work. They always told a story; Tuesday found them ink-stained from his first attempt at using a quill, Wednesday had them covered in bandages after hours spent in(more) the wood-shop, Thursday revealed flour embedded quite firmly in the loops and whorls of his fingers from an afternoon spent in the kitchen, no matter what there was always something covering, coating, or dusting his digits.
While she loved reading his day in the stories his hands told, better still was when he told stories with his hands. Grand gestures littered his speech while tics and snaps punctuated his sentences as he spoke a language she could watch all day. And when he took her hand in his, transcribing every second of their time together, engraving 'I love you' to the very core of her soul, oh, how her heart sings.(less)
I'd never done a spelling bee before. It was pretty terrifying. Mostly because if you got it right, you manipulated the force lines of the universe and bent them to your will, creating matter and energy where there had been none. More than one kid had purposefully quit out(more) of fear. I get why we do them, though. Pronunciation and spelling are important when you're a wizard.
My older sister had gotten a word, I don't remember what it was, I was really young. That's probably good though, because she up and vanished in a flash of sparks and smoke when she repeated it. She won the whole spelling bee, which is nice, but nobody really knows where she went. My uncle thinks she might have gone back and been Amelia Earhart, but that hardly provides closure in the "mysterious disappearances" department.
Anyway, they use this book, it's a magic book. And it give you a word. A lot of times, a whole phrase. And sometimes it's a spell nobody's used before. Ever, in all of history. Attempting it is a right of passage for wizards. I'm not really excited, though. I've got dyslexia, so I figure I'm gonna make a whole lot of nothing happen. The kids before me, the ones I could see anyway, one had his skin turn into scales, another cloned the judges, and the last made a storm form in the auditorium. The clouds were cotton candy, and it hailed jelly beans the size of golf balls. There were mixed opinions on that.
My spell is... "red heart toyers?" See, I just KNEW I'd get a phrase. There goes ANY chance of beating my dyslexia. And I bet it was a love spell, too!
Oh well. Here goes.
"E-A-R-T-H-D-E-S-T-R-O-Y-E-R." Wait, no, that spells...
The old man and the boy sat gazing out over the tranquil water of the family pond. Cottonwoods and willows lined the banks, casting lengthy shadows in the waning hours of daylight. Their bare feet dangled over the side of the rickety little dock, a rusty can of worms(more) between them. The boy was dabbling his big toe into the water when the cork float began to dance, sending shimmering ripples in every direction.
"Pa paw look!"
The boy was so excited he almost fell in.
"Easy now, you don't want to spook him." The old man's tone was soft and reassuring. "He doesn't quite have it yet."
The boy's eagerness was infectious, and the old man couldn't help but crack a smile, the wrinkles on his cheeks curling up into folds of weathered skin.
"Wait 'til it disappears and bring the line tight."
The cork bobbed and popped as the boy watched anxiously, then it was gone.
"There you go you've got him!"
The boy grabbed the fishing rod his father had got him for Christmas a few months ago, a little snoopy rig that he just had to have after accompanying his Pop to the tackle shop, and reared back with all the force a five year old can muster. The line came taught, the rod nearly doubling in two.
"Reel son, reel!"
It was hard to tell who was having more fun. The boy squealed with delight and the old man let out a hearty laugh.
"Keep reeling and you'll have him whooped!"
They regained sight of the cork as the line cut through the surface of the pond, zigzagging to and fro.
"Bring him towards me now.."
The boy awkwardly maneuvered the fishing pole towards his Pa paw, who carefully landed the boy's first fish. (less)
Roan leaned back and smiled at the remains of the potion that steamed at the bottom of his flask. The clear liquid put out a foul stench with its smoke, and Roan would have choked if not for his good mood. He closed his eyes and wished many an(more) unhappy day on Sebastian.
There was a knock at the door.
Master Marchand had already gone home for the evening, and Roan was alone in the alchemist's schoolhouse. He stood up and brushed a few powders off of his pants, pulling off his gloves and laying them on the table in front of the foul-smelling concoction. Roan opened the door to see a lean woman standing there, nearly as tall as Roan, her pale brown hair that reminded Roan of something unpleasant pued away from her sharp, half-familiar face.
"Hello, ma'am," Roan started, "Master Marchand is not present, but--"
"Be silenced, you petty brat," the woman spat, and Roan found his lips bound together.
He was dealing with a sorceress, a sorceress who happened to look remarkably similar to his ex-lover. Fear struck Roan's heart and his eyes widened.
"Were you the boy who poisoned my Sebastian?" she asked, her words a harsh whisper. Roan felt the truth forced out of him as he nodded. "Who broke his heart?" Roan was forced to not again. The woman--Sebastian's sorceress mother--snarled. "You will pay," she hissed.
"A monster within by sunlight,
Appears without by starlight,
Feathers black as dark night,
This curse begins tonight."
Sebastian's mother smiled wickedly and turned, walking away, leaving the full moon in her wake.
Roan watched after her, puzzled--until the pain set in. Breaching his back, fusing and stretching his bones, needles pressing out of his skin--Roan fell to his knees and howled in pain.
"All I'm saying is," Dean took a drag from a cigarette, "We fashion our tools with preconceived notions."
Grey thought that was ridiculous, "Like a shovel? What does that even mean?"
(more) Dean exhaled through his nose, "All tools, ways of measuring--are you following me here?"
"All of that shit is designed with something already in mind."
"Once again," Grey mocked Dean's 'mind blown' pantomime, "I fail to see the profound meaning in all of this."
"Perfect example--the pico scale microscope."
"Oh, sure! Perfect!"
"Don't patronize me--we are already looking for something almost immeasurable. It 'looks' at atoms--atoms we only THINK we know all about."
"So, there's this whole Titan 'correction system' in place to bend the result into fitting our own pre-rationalized little orb."
Grey watched as an ember fell and fizzled into lifelessness, "And that's what's wrong with the human condition?"
"Not really, but think about it--we think we know shit, and when we find shit's not exactly up to our expectation, it freaks us out, so we make things meet our expectation." Dean finally snubs the cigarette out on the heel of his shoe.
"Never thought of it that way." Grey was actually taken aback this time.
"It's probably why we think of atoms as spheres. I mean..."
Your raised shoulders, narrowed eyes, and slight frown all say the opposite.
I inhale -- do I want to stay silent, as is the norm, or do I want to push for answers? Trying to get honest answers from you when it comes to yourself i(more)s like pulling teeth -- but you'll talk about anything else, given the slightest provocation. Strange.
I lean against the wall, cocking my head as if to say 'Oh, really?' I'll be trying my luck today.
"I'm fine," you insist. You look even more harried -- how dare I not accept your bald-faced lies? You make a shooing gesture with your arms, like you can cause me and my unwanted (?) concern to dissipate with a simple gesture.
I narrow my eyes at you, and hold your gaze long enough to let you know that I don't buy what you're saying.
With a nod, I turn around and wave good-bye, walking out into the night. If you won't tell me, I won't make you spell it out, but I won't stay around to listen to you lying -- to me or yourself -- any longer than I have to, either.(less)
"I-s-a-b-e-l" I tell them when they asked me how to spell my name.
I would have assumed they would have known how to spell it but then again there was that one kid who thought there was an extra e at the end. Pretty sure he thought the (more)s was a z too.
I never got along with him.
I do remember that day clearly though. It was the day that I stopped feeling like an outcast. For once I felt wanted. I felt kinda happy as I left for class that morning. It was the third day of school. The first time I had been to public school in three years. I thought I was never gonna fit in with anyone but it turned out I was wrong.
The day where that random kid called me over from 3 tables away turned out to be that start of something I would never forget. He said it was because I was wearing glasses. I thought it was weird but I stuck around anyways. I'm glad I did.
From then on I met so many different people and I had such amazing times. Even though there were some bad ones, I won't ever regret it. (less)