“Let me tell you a story.”
“Jesus!” The Magician – who, until moments before, had been sat very much alone, in a cafe – swept a hand over the spilt coffee (flat white) so that it disappeared. “You scared me.” The Witch, as was his wont, had appeared seemingly from nowhere, though the Magician knew that he didn’t possess the power to actually materialise from thin air. “When did you get here?”
The Witch smiled, a small, humourless twist of lips. “Now this is a story you’ve heard already, but bear with me.
“There was once a Magician,” Jack continued. “A learned man, an educator, who cast his magic with his hands, with words of dead and foreign tongues. He travelled the world in pursuit of knowledge. On his travels he met a Witch, the last in a long line of Witches, magic made blood and bone. He became enamoured, obsessed. His desire to learn the Witch’s secrets was only rivalled by his desire to possess the Witch.”
“But the Witch loved another, a man whose only magic was all too human, whose charm lay in his lips and his eyes and the wounds of his soul and the fact that he did not love the Witch back.
“The Magician vowed – unbidden, might I add – to do all he could to alleviate the pain the Witch felt. ‘I will never betray you,’ he said. ‘I would never hurt you.’ But the Magician fell spellbound at the feet of the man, and betray the Witch he did.”
“Jack I’m sorry-”
“Shut up!” The Witch hissed. The lights in the cafe flickered, and all the shadows elongated to points, all bent towards the Magician. “Just listen.
“The Witch was shattered. And something felt the cut of his anguish. Something answered his pain with the promise of pain returned.” The Magician saw something move in the depths of the Witch’s eyes. “The Wild Hunt is after you. For all your knowledge, you can maybe stay a step ahead of them for a while, but there is nothing in the known or unknown universe that can call them off besides blood. And they have the scent of yours.” The shadows had fled to the corners of the room now. Lightning flashed outside the windows.
“What? Jack, how did you even- it – you don’t-”
“I know. But it’s true. I’m sorry. The Hunt is terrible; they will hunt you relentlessly, and when they finally catch you they will tear you apart and feed you to their hounds. You will not be afforded the luxury of death, you will feel every bite as they tear chunks from your legs, your arms, your gut. But that’s not what I came here to say.”
“Then what did you come here to say?”
Flames danced in the Witch’s irises making infernal portals of his pupils.
Monthly Archives: July 2017
“Let me tell you a story.”