Marlo raises a tiny plastic cup of water, rotates it slowly, eyeing the liquid suspiciously before placing it back on the table.
“I used to do tricks, simple sleight of hand things, the occasional ‘card out of your pocket’ thing. Nothing major.”
Officer Gregson watches the suspect with a slight sneer barely held back. The ‘Magician’ had been brought in as the main suspect in quite a phenomenal robbery. Somebody had managed to take several fully loaded armoured vehicles and vanish them completely in a single night. From separate locations across the entirety of the city. All at the same time. At least according to the final transmissions from the tracking devices.
“Then, well, ‘that’ happened didn’t it.” Marlo uses his hands emphatically, naturally taking on the personality of the showman, being the centre of attention and in control of the scene. He waves them around, guiding the officer’s attention to them whilst Marlo scans the room quickly.
“It was supposed to be the end, right? But, of course, we managed to stop that. Then the rocks fell, the same thing everyone will tell you. I grabbed one, a meteor, directly from another planet! Everyone has one, but It was still something to have… despite what the Law said.”
Gregson shifted in his seat. He had a piece of it as well, but it was safely stored at home, locked in a little box seated neatly between his pants and socks.
“Of course, nobody knew what the ‘side effects’ of those special little rocks would be.”
Gregson cracks out of silence.
“We just need to know what your ‘Ability’ is. Did you get strength? Stamina? Those are quite common amongst male ‘Users’.”
Marlo smiled, his teeth a pure white that seemed almost impossible to be real. He also had a thin, pristine moustache which framed his mouth.
“My ability, Officer, is the same as it always has been. Magic. The only difference now is that my Magic is a little more… Real.”
“Real?” Gregson enquired, raising an eyebrow.
Marlo raises his hands, there are handcuffs chaining him to the table, however they slip off instantly whilst Marlo maintains eye contact with Gregson and then presents the Officer with his own keys. Gregson grabs the keys, shuts off the recording device and launches at Marlo.
The officer manhandles Marlo backwards and slams him against the wall.
“I don’t know if you think you’re clever or just a prick, but I will get to the bottom of this and all you’ve done is incriminate yourself further.”
“Relax Officer! It was all a part of the show! 1…”
The interrogation room stretches out behind Gregson whilst he holds Marlo. It warps and distorts bizarrely, the floor changes from concrete to wooden and the metal furniture has transformed into two stools set just apart.
Gregson realizes he isn’t in uniform anymore, instead he is now wearing a simple jeans shirt combo. He remembers his wife telling him to wear the jumper that her mother had bought him for Christmas because it was cold outside. He told her that it was too scratchy to wear and it would get too hot inside the…
He looks over to the left and can now hear the laughter coming from a several thousand mouths, the stage lights are unforgivably bright and blind him as he looks out at the indescribable crowd filled with indeterminate faces and silhouettes.
Gregson releases Marlo who remains in character and returns to centre stage and continues the show.
Mick Gregson, not an officer but instead a Janitor from South City, volunteered to prove the Magician wrong. He came up to the stage to prove that hypnotism was a load of nonsense and that he could outdo anyone that tried to pull such bullshit.
Now, he stands on stage, surrounded by laughter, set pieces and filled with questions about his sanity and whether anything was even real anymore.
Marlo, sensing that something wasn’t sitting right with his latest ‘victim’ went over to him and raised his arm in victory.
“Yes! Well done ‘Officer’ Gregson! Thank you, please return to your seat and enjoy the grand finale of the show!”
The man was bustled off the stage by hands and loudly applauded as he returned to his seat near his wife.
“Thank you! Get that man a drink somebody, he certainly earned it!”
Marlo laughed heartily, took a deep breath and held his arms out to the side, eyes closed and waited for the crowd to fall into silence.
“Ladies and Gentlemen, I call upon everyone here to open their hearts, open their minds, open their very souls and witness the Magic here tonight. None of this would be possible if you hadn’t joined me here tonight, either filled with a mysterious wonder at the magic that surrounds us in our everyday lives, or even doubting its very existence. I thank you.”
He opens his eyes and readies for his final trick, taking several steps to the side, Marlo personally creates a large space around him. He rolls up his sleeves, his cuffs splash over the dark velvet towards his shoulders. He then returns to centre stage.
“For my final act, I call upon the ancient Gods and Goddesses to lend me their power!”
He reaches forward, wriggling his fingers at the audience as the light dims.
“Oh Ancient Beings, those with the forgotten names from cities that ceased to be. Lend me your power to show you still hold your power!”
The air crackled with static electricity as he finishes the sentence, the crowd begin to murmur between each other.
“Lords, Ladies and Princes, grant me your power!”
The crackling static now begins to pop and snap with bright lights across the crowd. People begin to shriek and shout with excitement, Marlo remains constant with his movements, sweat is beading on his forehead as the air pops and cracks around the audience.
“Oh, Ancient Ones, grant me a final act to show you that we still believe in our nature!”
Items from the floor raise up into the air around the audience who are still screaming at the pops and crackles, several sit in awe and wonder at the sights around them. One lady grabs her handbag as it tries to levitate into the air above her, which proceeds to start lifting her from her seat. She begins to screech as her husband holds onto her legs attempting to stop her floating off.
“Ancient One’s, I thank you. Rest now.”
Marlow stops waving his fingers, the static fades instantly and the items floating drop unceremoniously back down to their origination. The woman also lands back in her seat.
Silence falls across the auditorium.
It then erupts into applause as Marlo stares into the crowd, exhausted, sweating and exhilarated.
The curtain falls in front of him muting the crowd slightly as Marlo exits the stage on the left.
Six Writing/680, Head Writer/Author/Junior Editor: SixEighty is a Black Country UK university student, father of two and married to an amazingly bright woman with an intelligence only paralleled by her beauty. He’s currently working on a dark epic manuscript and also a script for TV adaptation.