2009-01-29: Magic Steps 1



Summary: After the argument that caused Billy to disappear, he wakes up, and receives a special… quest.

Date: January 29, 2009

Magic Steps: Step One

Rating: G

A quaint little house… somewhere Billy's never been

Opening his eyes, Billy finds himself in a backyard. Not only is he in a back yard, but he's stark naked. There's an old woman stroking a cat on the back porch.

"You've been lying there for a day, young man. Now, get yourself clothed and we'll talk." She says, standing and opening the back door to her house. "Come, Ebony" She says to the cat.

Shaking his head, Billy mutters a few words, wrapping himself in clothing. He steps into the back door and looks around. "Hello? I'm sorry, but I really don't know where I am."

"Don't you?" The old woman says as she carries a tea service into her sitting room. "Let me guess. You just let the magic take you where it will, without bothering to specify a destination or a desire. You just ran from something that was bothering you."

A slight blush of embarassment crosses over Billy's face as he nods. "Yes, ma'am. I was gonna go back later and figure…" He starts, but stops himself. He doesn't think making an excuse that may not even be true will do him any good here.

The woman nods quickly. "Good. You caught yourself. It's better than your mother would have done." She pours two cups of tea, adding three lumps of sugar to one, and cream and one lump to the other. She offers the one without cream to Billy.

His eyes snap up as he hears her words. "You know my mother?" He asks. As she offers him the tea, he looks down at it. "How did you know how I like it?"

"You really haven't a clue about your powers, have you?" She asks, sipping at hers softly. "Your powers are like hers, but channeled differently. You must learn to control the energies, and learn how to do magic without relying on your mutation. It will take lots of time and practice. If you don't, you'll become as big… if not bigger… of a danger than Wanda ever was."

"How… Ok. I'll… This is just surreal." Billy says, taking a sip of his tea. It's not just the right amount of sugar, but it's his favorite 'candy cane' tea. Generally, only available around the holidays.

"No, it's completely real. That's the thing you're not grasping, William. Your mother channeled Chthonic energies… chaotic energies into our world to fuel her own chaotic abilities. YOU… are channeling the same energies, but converting them to Order. You have to master yourself. You have to be able to bring both order and chaos as is necessary or you'll do what she almost did, and upset the balance again." Her voice never rises. The cat purrs in her lap, quietly, keeping a wary eye on the young mutant.

"Chthonic?" Billy asks. "Magic without my powers? How do I separate the two?" He doesn't understand. "And can you help me find my mother? You know her, surely you have a clue about where she may be."

At the mention of his mother, Ebony hisses. "Calm yourself, William. I'm just the first stop you're making to learn more about who you are. You're going to visit more of us. Learning as you go. If you don't take what you learn to heart, well… I can't speak for the outcome.

Billy simply scratches his head. "I… I suppose I understand, ma'am. But how do I know where I need to go?"

She shakes her head, giving a soft laugh. "You don't. You will simply go where you need to go. Speaking of which," The lady pulls out a small box. Opening the ornate box, she takes a pinch of powder and blows it at him. "Tell whoever your next stop is that Agatha says hello." She smiles sweetly… fading away into nothingness before Billy's eyes.

But then, after she fades, Billy passes out, not knowing where he'll wake up.

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