Now You See It

This is the first story to be generated by the 'September Madness' post. If you want to see the current list of prompts or (even better) add your own then click here.

It was my mum's birthday this week so it seemed appropriate to start with an idea sent in by my parents. Happy Birthday Mum!




Larry stared hard at the script. “After the accident he came to and tested his legs and arms, they were working fine…” he glanced nervously at Rex and his voice fell to a mumble.

“What was that Larry?” asked Rex.


“Don’t make me come over there Larry.”

Larry sighed. “Also his tail was working well.”

“Hang on, tail? Tail! I don’t have a tail.”

“It says here you do.” replied Larry, pointing to his script for emphasis.

Rex drew himself up theatrically. “I’m the Mystic Marvel for god’s sake! And the Mystic Marvel would never have cast such a stupid spell in the first place, and even if he had it wouldn’t have backfired. He’s a serious magician; he wouldn’t use magic he couldn’t control, that’s the whole point of the character! The fans would never stand for it!”

“I know Rex but its only one spell. Isn’t the Marvel allowed one mistake?”

“Oh you have got be kidding me! Larry, get my agent on the phone and tell her I’m coming over. And that I’m not happy. Not happy at all.”



The man was wrapped in a ratty brown sleeping bag and a cascade of mouldy cardboard. Rain tinkled against an old tin at his side, making the coins inside wink under the streetlamps.



“For his own sake Larry, make him see sense. There isn’t much call for a super magician on TV these days, and everybody loves dogs…I’m sure he did but he’s got bills to pay like the rest of us…Pairing him up with Pudsey the dog will add zeroes to our ratings, have you seen him dance? You should get Rex to watch the video…Yeah, well he’s always upset about something. It’s only for the pilot and the first season of the show. After that we might be able to negotiate a plotline where he reverses the spell and they become a crime-fighting duo. And it’s easy work, all voiceover apart from the flashback scenes…Larry I need an answer, the right answer, by tomorrow. The money’s on the table, everybody’s waiting to go. It’s going to happen. That dog has a bright future on television. He’s already won the hearts of the British public. God Larry, I even heard rumours about a movie being made if the series takes off.”



The three members of the Mystic Marvel Fan Club stood quietly. They had all replaced the purple lining of their capes with black silk. The men glanced at each other. As one, they removed their tall hats.

White gloved hands fluttered, and doves took to the air. For thirty minutes the men conjured, turning tricks, cheating eyes, dazzling the gravestones and September clouds. The finale was low key. Three coins plucked from the air and tossed into the earth.


(Original prompt was: After the accident he came to and tested his legs and arms, they were working fine also his tail was working well, hang on tail!! tail!! I don't have a tail.)

23 responses to “Now You See It

  1. A sad, sad turn of events. Catering to the public always means death in the end.

    "… will add zero’s to our…" Should this be "… will add zeroes to our…"?

  2. And this is why we don't co-author much. I could never edit the tail off a dear friend.

  3. Your family is weird. And I mean that in a good way.

  4. I think he should have jumped at the chance to co-star with Pudsey, that dog is brilliant. 🙂

  5. What a fun idea for a blog anniversary! Nice piece.

    • It's been great seeing all the different things people have come up with and in an odd way, quite liberating to have to use them (rather than choosing ones you like).

  6. I like the opening dialogue. And an interesting take on this idea of almost stars and the mix of ego versus staying true to the character.

  7. That is the price you pay for being a primadonna! Or is it the price you pay for staying true to the original content, what you know to be true in your heart? It's got me thinking! Good job!

  8. First of all Tim, you are right about us.
    Now, well done Peter for coming up with such a clever way of using the prompt, we both loved it.

  9. Damn you TV network! Damn you British public! I loved that show, loved it I did.

  10. It's the tail that makes all the difference – and this was quite a tale!

  11. My god, this was so sad!! *sniff*

  12. Hi there Pete —

    I can totally see Pudsey walking in with a fat stogie, saying: 'Thing is Rexy, them people they don't like them magics no more. I got me a role on CSI as a sniffer dog. We're over."

    But apart from that, I've still got the Mystic Marvel limited edition fat grill and exercise bike decoder ring. You telling me that thing ain't gonna be a collectors item now?

    Neat story 🙂

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