short story, Uncategorized

Be Careful What You Wish For

“What did you just do?” He was gasping for air, slouched over while clutching his chest in agony. His skin was as pale as refrigerated milk and when I reached out to him, my fingertips sent another shockwave through him causing him to stumble into the mantle beside the couch.  

What did I just do? I had no clue. I never discovered the extent of my powers and I never intended to. But he wouldn’t let it go. Kept pushing me, teasing me. And now I had no idea what I’d done to him.

He slid down to the ground with no signs of the side effects wearing off. His hand clung to his chest like a magnet. When he managed to pry his closed eyes open, he looked up at me through a mess of hair stubbornly sticking to his sweaty forehead. “Fine you win,” he croaked. I think he figured it would stop, all the pain. That everything would go back to normal if he admitted defeat but it didn’t. “Just reverse it already.”

“Reverse it?” The words tumbled out of my mouth. How could I reverse what I had no clue how to control? I swallowed hard, kneeling down beside his shivering body, afraid to touch him again and cause him more pain. “Jude,” I paused, sliding myself against the wall beside him, placing my head on the wall with a sigh. “I told you I didn’t know how to control it. I don’t know how to reverse it.”

I said the words slowly, like a carefully calculated marching band making their way through a half time show performance. But no amount of slow precise words were going to keep Jude from going off the deep end.

He hopped to his feet, hand still clinging to his chest desperate to relieve the pain. “Grace, what the heck! You said you were a witch.” He was walking in circles, muttering to himself in words I couldn’t understand nor hear clearly. “Doesn’t that, I don’t know, automatically mean you know what to do with your powers? What kind of witch doesn’t know how to control magic?” He waved his hands toward me until the energy seeped from them, his shoulders drooping in defeat.

I stand just as quickly as he had. I never wanted to use my powers let alone be born with magic to begin with. His words trigger something in me I hadn’t felt since grade school, a rage so deep and frustrating the scene before me turned red. It was only after he stepped away from me that I realized the color wasn’t just in my head, I was actually turning the entire room a crimson color.

I took a deep breath, the room slowly fading back to its original state. “You’re the one who wanted me to do this, or did you already forget that?”

Jude gulped, his hands dropping to his sides. The color in his cheeks were finally returning and he was no longer groaning around in pain. Surprisingly, that didn’t make me glad. “So does that mean you actually did it?” His words came out in a whisper. Silence followed as the gears in his head continued to turn then he looked up at me, swiping back his bangs from his eyes. “You actually took my soul?”

Despite myself, a smirk tugged at the side of my mouth. I give my hand a quick wave, clenching and unclenching the air in front of me. There was nothing to see but I felt it and so did he. Every time I made a fist, he’d grind his teeth together in pain. “Well,” I said, hands on my hips. “That’s what you wanted, wasn’t it?”


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