Two years passed. In this time I went back to university and managed to get a second degree, but it was a compacted degree, meaning we did three years of work in eighteen months. That means most of my writing was assignments and the like. But it also meant I had a lot of ideas swirling around. I did write many of them down, hoping to get to them one day when I had time. And after that time at uni was over, the first one I came to ended up being a 52200 word story called Power.
The concept was something I had been thinking about for a while – what if magic existed in the real world? This story (an urban fantasy, I guess) tells the tale of an evil magic-user trying to usurp the power of great magicians in order to rule the magic of the world. He is confronted by a young man who almost died in a motorcycle accident, and who has a young girl as his own student. Of course, in the end, the good guys win. It’s just that sort of story. I guess it could be called young adult, but I don’t think it really fits into any real age category.
As far as the story goes, yet again we have a whiny main character. The young girl was based on a girl I went to high school with and who I had recently at that stage caught up with again after many years. In high school she was always pretty needy, and so I made her a bit younger and turned her into the young girl. The bad guy is just a 2-dimensional Loki-type character. But, if you ignore the characterisations, the story itself actually reads as something unique. I think the descriptions of the magic battles work okay, though I should have chosen a better arena than roof-tops at one stage. The metaphysical stuff even reads okay. Just a shame the characters are not real interesting, and that ever-present ellipsis dominates the punctuation.
This one was never submitted anywhere, and the one person who read it called it, “Okay.” That’s it. I’m guessing that means she thought it was crap and didn’t want to hurt my feelings. Hard to argue with her, though.
Something was about to happen. And he just knew that it was another Power surge. It was coming. He wondered exactly what they were, what was causing them. And he wondered also how in the hell he knew? And, in that moment of doubt, he allowed his mind to fly before he could control it, bring it back to himself. But it came back with two words: Page 4. That made no sense.
And despite his misgivings, he concentrated briefly on those words. An image of the front of that day’s local newspaper entered his mind and he nodded to himself. He strode to the kitchen table and grabbed it from where Amanda had left it. Page four…
“Girl found dead in apartment,” the headline read. The photograph was not anyone who looked familiar, but she was a pleasant looking young girl. He quickly scanned the story. Christy Moore, twenty years old, a few months short of turning twenty-one. Had not turned up for a job interview on Saturday. Sunday night her father broke into her apartment and found her laying on the floor. No sign of violence. Autopsy showed a massive cerebral haemorrhage, as though her brain had “exploded”. International investigators had been called in to work out what could do that to a human brain.
Something struck a chord in Paul’s mind. Her brain had exploded? That was the exact word the article had used. So why would this story be sent to his mind?
Something with Power had killed her.
And that meant she had to have had some Power as well. Not enough to be able to put up any sort of a defence, but there was Power there. He swallowed and quickly read through the rest of the paper. Another story struck him. A ninety-eight year old man had died in a nursing home of a stroke. The story only written because they were trying to trace his family. He had been in the home for forty years, according to their records, and his family appeared to have abandoned him some time ago. Why would that story interest him? A stroke; something to do with the brain…
As much as he tried to deny it to himself, he knew why he was attracted to that tale.
There was Power involved there as well.
He closed his eyes and tried to clear his mind, but to no avail.