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  • I was five when I found I could work magic. I'd known about it before then, watching in awe as my Grandad's cobblestone hands produced biscuits and sweets from tins. I knew this was Granddad shaping the universe to produce treats for me. The tin had been empty when I left the room just moments before.

    But the first time I bent the elements to my will? I was in my bedroom, a floating ship of a room, hovering over next door's kitchen. The air was ice and the clouds a pale sickly yellow. I knelt on the threadbare carpet, older than me by a decade, and pressed my face against the thin window glass, looking down in disappointment at the still visible tarmac.

    The individual sounds were all ready in the air. I inhaled them and spoke them, shaping them with clouds of breath.

    Eyes scrunched up I said the syllables again and again, letting them flood out, melting the fern frost tattoooing the glass.

    When I opened my eyes the words had become flakes of snow, falling through the air to turn the back street into a landscape of sledging and snowmen waiting to be born.
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