“I will have those books. You can’t stop me!” His mirror image retorted. It was his younger self, hands smooth and creamy, the lightning swift to leave his fingers.
Zap. Zing. Phwipt.
“You cannot have the books!”
“I can, and I will!”
“No. It will destroy your destiny!”
“You just want to hold me back!”
“You do not understand what you are doing!”
Clunk. The red book hit the ground midway between them.
“How will I ever understand if you won’t teach me?”
Thud. The black book landed on top of the red one.
“You cannot be taught.”
“I can. You just refuse to try.”
“You cannot. You already know everything I am teaching you.”
Thwap. The black book rose from the ground.
“You always say that, but you never explain what you mean. The answers are in those books! I know it!”
Zert. The red book sailed through the air as if it had wings. It hovered dangerously close to the younger. Crackle, flash. It moved away, not quite far enough for the elder’s satisfaction. The younger was strong, too strong.
“You cannot have those books.”
“Ha. I have one already. You can’t stop me.”
“Do not force me to use torment on you.”
“You won’t. To hurt me would be to hurt you.”
“I would, I have, and I will.”
Fire streaked across the green. Nothing burned but the younger. He crumpled to the grass heavily, sending wisps of dandelion seed floating through the air. He arched his back and set himself against a tree trunk. He pulled the red book closer to him, his fingers searching as fast as his eyes could read.
“You do not want to live forever. This world is not worth it.” The elder breathed in spurts, feeling the pain of the burn on the younger. It weakened him greatly. He turned his energy to his mind, bending and wielding to share with the younger the memory of pain he had not experienced yet; the remembrance of stolen love; the cost of all the lost lives that had gone before him.
The younger’s chest swelled as tears spilled over, moistened the ground. This pain was worse than the burn he felt, though the healing spell he’d summoned was working. The black book settled beside him, its voyage through the air complete.
“Now that you know, do you still want the books?” The elder said between the gasps of pain filtering from his ancient lips.
I was cleaning out my documents yesterday and found this little gem that I wrote for a 500 word contest on Figment.com. The picture was the inspiration. Enjoy!
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