Lessons in Magic

The interplay between these two is so sweet!


“Let’s say I help you a bit and then, you’ll be free to give me that tour. Would that suit you, Master Grayson?”

“But… how can you help me, if – if you’re a mundane?” Cyrus asked.

Starke chuckled and strode out of the room. As he passed Cyrus, he caught him by the hand. Drawing him back towards the corridor with the trophies, he said, “I’m a professor of theoretical magic, Master Grayson. I can explain almost any spell. I just can’t do magic myself.”

Cyrus bit his lip and nodded. He wanted to protest that he’d had the standard cleansing spells explained to him several times. It just never made sense to him. However, he was so surprised that Starke was holding his hand, he couldn’t seem to speak.

It wasn’t until they’d reached the display case that Cyrus had been working at before he’d heard the singing that Starke let him go. Then, Cyrus found his voice. “I – I don’t know about this, Professor,” he said, his nervousness making his voice tremble slightly. “I tend to break things when I use magic and – and Professor Foster is so particular!”

“You probably put too much force behind your spells,” Starke said, his tone gentle. “Take a steadying breath or two.” He waited until Cyrus had taken several breaths, before he said, “Now, the standard cleansing spell will remove dust and oils. It’s just what you want for these trophies.”

Cyrus nodding. He swallowed thickly and then took a few more calming breaths. Finally, he said, “A-all right. I – I know the spell words, but… it doesn’t seem to help any.”

Starke set a hand on his shoulder and said the spell word. After Cyrus had repeated it, he nodded. “Now, just point your wand at the first trophy and – softly, now – say the word.”

Nodding again, Cyrus drew out his wand. He bit his lip and took a few more steadying breaths. Then, in a soft voice, he spoke the spell words. A thin layer of foam covered the trophy, then it dissipated, leaving a shining and clean metal surface behind. Cyrus blinked and then bit off a laugh.

“Nothing broke,” he said, his voice cracking.

Starke slapped his shoulder and nodded. “As I said, Master Grayson,” he said. “It’s a simple matter of you putting far too much into your spells. Just relax and ease off a bit. Speaking softly will help that.”

“Thank you, Professor Starke,” Cyrus said. Now, he’d be done with the task of cleaning the trophies before supper was served. He grinned brightly and said, “I could give you that tour now, if you’d like?”


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