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Rated: E · Fiction · Writing · #2278224
What happens when an illusionist meets a real person with magic
1040 words

I am not used to walking down the Strip in 114* heat. But I had a mission. I promised to see every Las Vegas magician if my life depended on it. I wanted to be a magician. I wanted to be a member of the Magic Castle, the International Brotherhood of Magicians, and the American Association of Magicians. But I was not there yet. Not in a longshot. Today, I was going to try and catch Doug Lister. He was my last one of the week. I already saw Penn and Teller, Criss Angel, David Copperfield, and Mac King. Jeff Mc Bride. Lance Burton and a few others. After all, I only had a week for this visit.
I was the first one lined up for his show, my tickets tightly in my hand. I'm not too fond of the heat.
As we filed in, I tried to enjoy and not seem like I was gathering information like a student gathering facts for a final paper. I settled in my seat, enjoying the air-conditioned one-thousand-seat theater.
As the show began, I ticked off the tricks I had learned from watching other magicians and master illusionists: body doubles, trap doors, and even clear elevated "floors" for the flying car. It wasn't the best I saw but not the worst either. I felt disappointed, though. I gave the obligatory applause and filed out. I decided to go to the meet and greet I had for all the others.

I waited my turn rather impatiently. When I finally got to the front, I thanked the magician for the show and asked for an autograph. He studied my face. I began to feel uncomfortable. It was as if he was boring into me, judging me. Finally, he said. "You don't believe in my magic." For a minute, I debated what to say. Should I tell him the truth? Should I lie? I decided to ask another question instead. "Where did you learn those tricks?" His whole demeanor changed. He became defensive and a little angry. "You think I'm like all the others."
"You are," I said, my temper rising. I had waited to say this to every magician on the Strip (except Criss Angel).
"Show me how you aren't, "I said.
"I can't show you how to do my tricks." He was hurt now.
"Then take me on as an apprentice. I'll be here every weekend to learn (I live in another state).
He looked more shocked than amused. He smiled as if he had won an enormous poker hand. He studied me again. This time I knew he was examining me for my commitment.
He quietly asked me, "You show me a trick."
I pulled out a regular deck of cards (you wouldn't know that, though) that I carry with me everywhere and showed me my three best card tricks. Two were regular tricks, but the third was a spectacular trick. Eyebrows shot up, and Lidster's face showed surprise and dismay. "Where did you learn that trick? And can you show it to me?"
I nodded my head no.
"Then no apprenticing."
"I don't know how I know that trick. It just comes" my head drooped as I told the sad truth. "All my magic is that way. That's why I need to learn the tricks. I need to know how to control it" I didn't realize the pleading in my voice until Doug looked me straight in the eye.
"I don't believe you;" He turned around and started to walk away.
I also turned to walk away, almost crying. How did this magician manage to get to me like that? I straightened up and did my best "I don't care" impression. But truth be told, I did care. I wanted to be a magician because the magic I held longed to get out.
"They're going to want to know how to do all your tricks," I heard a voice say. I began to turn around, and at my side stood Doug Lidster. "I changed my mind. I'm willing to try to help you."
"What do you want, my trick?"
"No. I'm hoping by helping you, and I can come up with new tricks out of inspiration. I don't think I can take your magic, though I'd love to have a piece of it; at least I can be inspired by your real magic."
"So now I'm the apprentice?" I asked.; I was becoming excited beyond happy.
He looked at me again with a stare that meant he was sizing me up and judging whether he should tell or do anything for me. "No, I am the sorcerer's apprentice." And he meant it seriously.
Over the next several months, usually on the weekend when I could get out of work, I studied with Doug. I learned everything sleight-of-hand, illusion, and whatever else was out there. I also learned how to use my magic to do huge, unbelievable tricks, which we perfected for his show and my portfolio of schemes for the Magic Castle. I kept holding off on my application because I was nervous. So, I kept practicing and practicing. When I thought I had it, I would make a mistake and start all over again. I couldn't get it. Finally, Doug sat me down and, with his stare, said, "I think you're ready. Don't be nervous. You know it. And more importantly, you forget that you are truly a real magician. Nothing is out of your ability. Nothing out of your magical realm. If you feel you're going to mess up, use your magic. As Obi-wan Kenobi said, "use the force, Luke." USE YOUR MAGIC! Don't let your low self-confidence submarine you. You are better than that. You will be the star of the show. Not just mine, but along the whole Strip. What do you say?"
"I'm not nervous anymore, and I can do anything."
:"Correct," He gave a rare smile, "And you will rule the strip with your magic."
This time I smiled. My magician mentor was right. How could I go wrong with real magic? I've been hanging out in the fake world of magic. It was time to introduce Las Vegas and the world to real magic.
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