- Provides the tools for change
The very first trick Kate learned, at the all-grown-up age of eleven and a half, was to make a coin disappear. After French lessons and piano practice and college level calculus taught by a charmingly tousled tutor - a sweetly awkward English twenty-something to whom Kate felt superior to in every way - he would lead her out onto the peppermint-scented lawn for a lunch of mushroom pate and warm baguettes and pineapple salad and chocolate mint eclairs and, between the rows of honeysuckle and baby's breath, he would show her magic. He palmed coins and produced scarves and turned cards into flowers, and deep down inside, rumbling with the aftershocks of not fully understanding something for once in her life, Kate burned to do the same. Her head, with its world-class education and radiant sharpness, purred that these simple parlor tricks were child's play and could be deconstructed into their smallest parts, and so snuck quietly to her room, her tutor's coin in hand, and practiced until the sky darkened and her hands ached. After the next morning's Mandarin and classic literature and viola lessons in the parlor, she pulled the coin from her dress and, like a seasoned magician gracing a crowd with mysteriously foreplay, waved her hands until the coin shimmered out of existence. Her tutor, a glint of pride in his eyes, clapped politely, but it wasn't until he began searching for his coin (of which he assumed she had palmed or slipped into her sock the way children often do) that true confusion began to set in. Opening the piano seat, peeking behind keys, plucking at each taut string until they confirmed, with a polite D, F, or G minor, that the coin was not there, he turned his gaze on her and demanded the coin. I made it disappear, she declared, smoothing out her dress - isn't that the trick? The coin, by now most likely tarnished by age, was never found, and even Kate can't quite account for the items that she makes disappear. All she knows now, standing on stages and in front of tail-coated gentry, is that she found her magic, and no textbook could ever teach her the same.
The High Priestess
- Psychic powers (intuition and secret knowledge)
Sadie was a curbside prophet, a Saturday-morning dreamer who spent every weekend exploring the city that she loved like a first-time lover. She would wander barefoot through farmers markets that blocked off entire roads and come home with funny hats and bohemian scarves and vegetables still wet with morning dew. She would watch passion plays in the park and sing along with every musician she passed, beating with them on bongos or slapping at her thighs. She bought tickets to independent movies playing at theatres no bigger than her flat, only to give them away to strangers on the street right before showtime just so she could stand under the marquee and its hundred-year-old bulbs and watch the crowds rush in. At night, she would swing through cafes that seemed aglow with dim electric light, sipping cafe au laits and holding existential conversations with complete strangers, only to slip out quietly when they weren't looking and do it all again somewhere new so that when they turned back around they could only wonder if she was there, with her wild hair and crow-black eyes, or if she was just a strange and wonderful dream.