The Night Wand
YOU South Africa|21 October 2021
The rewards for the winning magician would be great – but failure spelled death
AADITYA RAMSUNDER

I STARED at the others nervously, waiting. Sweat ran down my forehead as I heard the dis embodied voice blast over the speakers. “In a moment,” it began, “the competitors will participate in the first task. Remember –”

He was cut off by the crowd’s cheers. I turned my attention to the screen which displayed the thousand or so people watching a screen that would soon be switched on.

“Quiet!” the voice yelled, and immediately, there was absolute silence. “Remember: the one who wins this takes a seat at the Magicians’ Council – a truly high and rare opportunity.”

The crowd burst into cheers again and this time the voice didn’t stop them.

I was oblivious to the task itself. All I knew was that it was complex. A high level of magic was required, and those who didn’t possess this high level of magic would die.

A man walked into the room where the competitors had gathered. “Hello,” he said, and I immediately recognised his voice as the one that had just been blasting over the speakers.

“I assume you know who I am.” Of course, I knew. This man was none other than Wells Korter, the highest-ranking member of the Magicians’ Council.

Immediately, everyone got down on one knee and bowed. “Rise,” he said, and everyone complied.

“In a few short moments,” Korter explained, “you will be faced with a task that, if failed, will physically or mentally kill you.”

I shuddered. Korter looked at me. “Mirabelle Spell,” he said, extending his hand. “The South African magician.” He extended a hand. I shook it.

He looked at the others and quickly shook their hands before turning around and leaving.

Within what felt like no time at all, we were called out of the room. I slowly got up and walked to the door. I opened it and walked into the new room, which was a rather small one with five doors. Each person walked to a door, and we waited, hand on the handle.

A buzzer sounded and I pulled open the door, rushing into complete darkness.

I looked around panic set in.

A voice blasted over speakers hidden somewhere in this room. “This task is no easy one,” it said. “You will have to retrieve the Night Wand.”

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