Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/entry_id/1039175-Day-8---Protagonist-Background-Story
Rated: 13+ · Book · Sci-fi · #2281958
To keep all documents relating to the October Preparation Challenge for NaNoWriMo
#1039175 added October 13, 2022 at 1:02pm
Restrictions: None
Day 8 - Protagonist Background Story.
Twelve year old J.E. Worrall took the stairs two at a time. It was December 27th 1912, and he had just arrived to spend a few days holiday with his beloved Uncle and Aunt Chambers. Early that morning, Aunt Mary had arrived in Whitechapel, to travel with John Edward, or J.E. as he liked to be known, via bus and tube to Marylebone. Now he was eager to see his uncle. Having stowed his suitcase, and hung his cap and coat on the back of the door he hurried down to knock politely on the door to Uncle John's study.

"Come in. Ah! Here his is, my favourite nephew."

Uncle John always called him that, and J.E., who was named after him, didn't mind a bit, even though as he occasionally pointed out, he was Uncle John's only nephew.

"Hello Uncle John, Oh! I'm sorry."

This last was due to J.E. seeing the gentleman sat opposite his uncle. He looked a genial fellow, with a large moustache, and high forehead. He smiled amiably at J.E., and addressed Uncle John.

"So this is the young chap you've been telling me about John. The budding Magician."

He turned to J.E..

"My son Jasper's nearly your age young man, couple of years younger, he's keen to be a magician too."

"John, this gentleman is Nevil Maskelyne, you might have heard of him, and perhaps his father John Nevil Maskelyne?"

"Oh yes!" Exclaimed J.E., who'd been reading everything he could find about Magic and Magicians. His eyes glittered with excitement, for the Maskelyne's were big names in the performance of stage magic.

"Well now, here's a chance to show what you've learned so far to one of the finest magicians in the world. Have you been practising?" Asked Uncle John.

"Yes Uncle, every day." And he had, J.E. had already set his heart on being a Magician, and he planned to be at least as famous as the Maskelynes.

"Did you bring your kit with you?"

J.E. replied that he had, and then shot upstairs to fetch his case. Soon he had three cups arranged on a small table in front of his attentive audience. In front of them he placed a small rubber ball, and to one side he carefully laid his wand.

Clearing his throat, he began his patter.

"I shall now make this ball," here he tapped the ball with his wand, "to disappear and appear at will."

He showed Uncle John and Mr. Maskelyne that the cups were empty, and then covered the ball with one of them.

"The trick here," he said, "is to keep a close eye on where the ball is hidden."

Then he stopped and scratched his head.

"Err" I forgotten which cup it's under. Did either of you notice?"

The two men exchanged an amused glance.

"I think it may be this one." Said Mr. Maskelyne, and pointed to the cup in the middle.

J.E. picked up the cup.

"Or perhaps not." And Mr. Maskelyne laughed.

"It's the one of the left." volunteered Uncle John.

Again a cup was raised and again, there was no sign of the rubber ball. All three of them looked at the remaining cup.

"This must be it then." said J.E. lifting the last cup to reveal a small mouse, who blinked at them.

"Freddie, what are you doing there?" J.E. faked surprise, and lowered a hand for Freddie to scamper into.

Uncle John and Mr. Maskelyne roared with laughter.

"I don't remember teaching you that." Said Uncle John, sounding impressed and proud.

"Oh I errm, just thought it would be funnier, and Freddie doesn't seem to mind." J.E. glowed as he heard the approval in his uncle's voice.

"That was excellent young man. I can see you'll go far. Do you have a stage name worked out yet?" Asked Mr. Maskelyne.

"I thought maybe 'The Marvellous Maurice'" said J.E. "Maurice is part of my full name." He added helpfully.

"It has a nice ring to it. You need a name that's easy to remember." Said Mr. Maskelyne.

"Or hard to forget." Added Uncle John.

"Like an indelible pencil. Said J.E., his mind racing.

"An indelible pencil?"

"Impossible to rub out. How about 'The Indelible Maurice'?" spluttered Maurice, who until a moment ago had been just plain J.E..

"Perfect." Said Mr. Maskelyne.

Uncle John concurred.

© Copyright 2022 Adherennium - not a Groundhog (UN: adherennium at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
Adherennium - not a Groundhog has granted Writing.Com, its affiliates and its syndicates non-exclusive rights to display this work.
Printed from https://www.writing.com/main/books/entry_id/1039175-Day-8---Protagonist-Background-Story