His train of thought was broken by a slight guffaw. It came from a slight young man, who wore thick glasses and appeared to be alone. Martin glared at him and said, “You dare to laugh? You shouldn’t even be here. You are a mere human among us immortals.”
I saw what he hid in his mind. The young man who laughed had been the object of Martyn’s ridicule for as long as they had been in school together. Martyn hated him because he was awkward and perhaps plain looking. Before his fascination with the occult, Martyn had been what he called a “jock.” He ran with a crowd of likeminded rascals who preyed upon boys like the one he called “Tete de Lun,” because of his severe acne. Those boys ridiculed Tete de Lun because of his interest in esoteric lore. Somehow Martyn became likewise obsessed, but he never showed this side of himself to his jock friends, and he still made fun of Tete de Lun.
Now he was furious that the object of his ridicule was laughing at him and his secret hobby. Now in college, Martyn still maintained the facade of being a jock, even joining a fraternity, while Tete de Lun, also attending the large college was still an outcaste. If you know me, my dear readers, you know that as a child, I was subjected to torture by bullies like Martyn. This turn of events enlivened me.
Now Martyn called out in a loud voice, “Come, oh Tete de Lun. Come and join me in a duel. Since you have dared to laugh, we will see who is the better sorcerer.”
The boy stammered something then turned to leave. Martyn pointed, “Make him come up here. He has laughed. Now see my power!”
Some of the men, who were dressed as monsters of some sort or another, pushed Tete de Lun forward. He ascended the stage with knocking knees, for he was still quite afraid of Martyn.
“Now kind audience,” Martyn intoned, “we shall begin with the simplest of sorcery. Here, you,” he pointed to a woman wearing vampire teeth. Please give me your empty glass.” She passed up a clear glass beer mug stained around the lips with her tawdry red lipstick. He handed the glass to Tete de Lun, who took it with trembling hands. His face had gone pale.
“Now make water! Make water from nothing!” he ordered.
Tete do Lun giggled nervously. “I could in the lab. I am a chemistry major…” Everyone in the room began to laugh, and a few tossed beer and nuts at him.
“As expected,” Martyn said, taking the glass into his own hands. “Now see the wonder of my power!” Some people laughed, but all watched. “Make water!” he called out.
I was ready. I forced the contents of his bladder out and a puddle began to form around his feet. Martyn looked down at the mess, unable to believe what had happened. This drew the crowd’s attention, and they roared with laughter.
At this, the proprietor, furious at this indignity, ran to the stage. “Get down from there, you ass!”
Martyn almost shrieked. “No, wait! I will show you! Give me a chance!”
The man stepped back only because the audience was screaming for more.
Inside of Martyn’s mind, I saw what he was thinking. He realized that he had used an expression he thought I had misunderstood. He would be more careful. As Tete de Lun tried to run off the stage, Martyn held him by the elbow and shook him. Under his breath he muttered, “Stay put, insect. I’m going to destroy you for what you did.”