1: Summer Again, Magic Again
Gas. Clutch. Gear. Steer. I repeated the process over and over in my head as I raced along the road.
I couldn’t believe I had agreed to a race with Stan, and with a stick shift too. It wasn’t that racing wasn’t fun- it definitely was- but I knew next to nothing about driving stick shifts; and crashing was starting to look inevitable with every passing second.
This is so not the way I want to spend my summer, I thought to myself; being stranded on the North Pole was way better than my experience, believe me.
I was actually planning on staying in New York for the summer after a long stressful first semester at NYU- that was the New York University for those who might not know- as a freshman before a letter arrived from Blake, my sweet but sometimes imposing paternal grandfather, that I was to get on the first plane available to Krestwick; easy as pie since the family had its own array of private jets.
I considered refusing for a moment but soon concluded that would just be futile. Besides, I had to attend Firewalt for my third year of wizard training. Now, that was two weeks ago and Firewalt still wasn’t opened yet because of some ‘renovations’- not that I saw anything that needed an update in that school- and I was stuck racing with my dear half-brother for the foreseeable future.
I rounded a bend and saw Stan’s car up ahead; that was a welcome change. Now, I just had to work on getting ahead of him. And of course, not crashing and killing myself in the process- should be easy, don’t you think?
I was about to get to him when a wall of thick fog suddenly appeared on the road. “Come on!” I shouted, “He’s using magic now?” Sure, we were a big family of wizards; but certainly, using magic in a competition, even if it’s private, was against the magic users code- if something like that does exist.
“Well, if they ask me, he started it first,” I added for my own benefit before sending a blue light flying into the now tunnel-like looking fog, causing it to dissipate. I saw that Stan’s car had slowed down a bit. Apparently, my foolish specimen of a half-brother must have thought I’d be stuck in the fog for a while. Well, he was about get the shock of his life.
I stepped on the gas a little bit more forcefully than necessary and began to gain on him. I waited until I had gotten close enough before sending a wave of cold air towards his car, turning one of the wheels into a large chunk of ice. I shot past him just as he begun to spin wildly across the road- eat my dust, Stan! Actually, that might be hard to achieve seeing that the road was all tarmac and no dirt; still felt good to say it though.
I raced harder as I saw the finish line but suddenly the road began to get slippery and I knew my half-brother might not be as out of it as I thought. I managed to force myself across the finish line at almost the same time as Stan- I think I won although it’s hard to be sure in the midst of all that commotion we just caused.
“I won the race, right?” I asked Grandpa Blake as I got out of the car and jogged towards him.
“I can’t say, Troy,” he replied, looking somewhat displeased although I couldn’t tell why. “I was so worried about you and Stan killing each other that I couldn’t see the actual race. You both did remember that you’re supposed to be racing and not dueling, right?”
“He started it,” I said and pointed accusingly at my half-brother who was just making his way towards us- kinda lame of me to act like that, I know, but he deserved it for what he did.
“I casted a harmless spell but you responded with that ice bit. You could have caused me to crash, did you know that?” Stan returned and took an angry step towards me.
“Boys, enough!” said Grandpa Blake sternly and stepped between us before the confrontation got to the ‘I punch you in the face’ phase. “You guys did more damage to the race course than to yourselves.”
I turned to look at the course and saw that our magic had really done a number on it; cause of many misspells. Stan and I gave Grandpa Blake a sincere apology nod, we might not agree on many things but we were definitely on the same page in the ‘No destroying things’ book.
“Can’t you just cast a spell that will repair the road?” asked Stan.
“I can, but I won’t,” replied Grandpa Blake as he turned and began to walk away. “If I keep solving every problem myself, what will be essence of hiring helpers then? Come on, the girls are waiting.”
The girls Grandpa Blake was referring to were Victoria and a friend of Stan’s whose name was Igraine or Yvette- I never could seem to remember her name even though she’d told me like a thousand times- she was staying over for the time being.
The thing was, Grandpa Blake suggested that since the magic schools weren’t opened yet because of their simultaneous renovations- I still don’t understand how the hell that was even possible- we could invite our friends over. I decided to invite Victoria; she was my girlfriend and I hadn’t had enough time to spend with her since all through the year- result of living continents apart and having a demanding university education to go with it. So yeah, she was my first choice.
I actually wanted to add Kendra to the list but she and Victoria didn’t mix well last year and although they seem to get along pretty okay now, I still thought it best not to involve them too much with each other just yet- sounds right, don’t you think?
Stan, on the other hand, had chosen to invite the girl whose name always escaped me; but as with everything with my beloved half-brother, there was something that rubbed me wrong about the girl.
Thing is, She attended Blackhead, as in the best magic school for dark wizards. I mean, where did a white wizard like Stan even get to know her? Anyway, Grandpa Blake told me not to bother myself with that obviously disturbing fact and so, that was what I was doing; being tolerant.
“Please tell me you saw me kick Troy’s butts on the race track,” Stan said to the girls as we all walked towards them coming down from the manor.
“Actually, I think Troy won,” returned Stan’s dark witch friend; much to my half-brother’s dismay.
“You see, Igraine said I won,” I added with a big smirk at him but no one seemed to be sharing in the amusement as they suddenly stopped and began to look at me funny. “What?“, I asked.
“Who’s Igraine?” asked Victoria with an ‘Are you for real?’ expression on her face.
“I’m Yvette,” said Stan’s friend.
“Well, you have to agree that Yvette and Igraine do sound pretty alike,” I replied, shrugging at my persistent mistake.
“No, they don’t, Troy,” said Grandpa Blake, smiling, “they really don’t.”
And then we all began to laugh; we had just repeated a scenario that had occurred over a thousand times during the summer. Well, I might not be having a Bora Bora experience; but it was still summer and I was with my loving grandfather, my “always getting on my nerves” half-brother, my beautiful girlfriend, and a girl whose name I have a knack for forgetting. There was only one word that could suffice to qualify it; magical.