The long sleep




They said he was in a coma, and to those who didn't know what to look for, it seemed just so. I knew different though. That kid had been coming into my Magic shop for years. Ten years old and he was telling me which books were real and which were phoney. At least he didn't tell the other customers. Either way I thought he was out of his mind when he informed me he had found a copy of the "Book of Jai". I laughed at him first, becasue... well it just semed ludicrous this kid telling me he had found one of the four left in existance. I knew he had though. It was that look. He could look at you through his ten year old eyes like he was a hundred years old. God only knows how bad he freaked his folks out.

I warned him not to fool around with that book. It was to much for him. Hell it was to much for anyone. He wouldn't listen though. I wonder if I would have listened if I had been the one to find it. A few days after he told me about his discovery, I read in our small town paper that he was ina coma. No one knew why, or what had happened to him. His mother found him at his desk sleeping on top of a book, as usual, but this time he wouldn't wake up. At first she just put him in bed, thinking he had pushed himself to far. After a day though, he still didn't wake up. He didn't wake up the next day either, or the next. For ten years that kid slept.

I went to visit him in the hospital once. No one else was there. I mumbled a few incantations and knew that I was treading into some deep stuff. I was knocked backwards out of my chair and onto the floor. I knew instinctively he wasn't the one who did it either. I also knew that I was way out of my league.

Everyone pretty much gave up on him except for his poor mom. His dad left town for Vegas and then it was just her and a comatose son. Then, ten years to the day he went under, he woke up. His hair had changed from black to red and he was now a full grown adult. This made the paper too.

I wanted to go visit him, but something inside me knew he would come to me. When he did show up he didn't say a lot. He asked me where I was during the invasion and how my family was. Small talk really. Thing is, he was an adult. He had been somewhere and matured. I could feel the inherent power within him. I didn't say anything, when he said, "It's in there. I just have to figure out how to use it."

I asked, "Where were you?" He smiled and shook his head. "You would be the only one to believe me, but I can't tell you. Not yet." We split a coke and laughed at a few of the Wiccan teenagers buying candles.

"I'm going to Parragon," he told me just before he left. "It's all gonna happen there." I haven't seen him since, but word is he's out there doing what they all do. I never asked him what happened to that book either. It's best that I don't know. Not yet anyway.