Prelude to Magic:

The Prequel to moonlight and illusions


Cover Artist: Elaina Lee


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The Prequel to Moonlight and Illusions 

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Excerpt from "Prelude to Magic:
​The Prequel to Moonlight and Illusions


​For months he had been working on a new act. The coin and card tricks
were practiced with Calvin and Ruby as his audience. His young son was
particularly fond of coin tricks, especially if he got to keep the money
pulled from behind his ears. After much trial and error, Stephen
fashioned a special retractable birdcage and table for the third act.
He gave the hinge for the new Omega cabinet another few drops
of oil so the door opened and closed without a sound.

​Rag in hand; he polished the wood one last time. Tomorrow he and
Jacob would begin packing up the new set of props for his first show
in Philadelphia since their return from touring. With the light outside
fading as the days grew shorter, Stephen took a few minutes to light
the oil lamp and candles. He tossed the last few pieces of wood into
the pot bellied stove to ward off the dropping temperatures. To finish
reviewing the checklist tonight he would need more wood to keep the heat going for another hour or two.

​Opening the door, he stepped out into the yard and glanced toward the main house. Candlelight glowed in the upstairs windows. Ruby was getting Calvin ready for bed. Stephen smiled into the darkness as he made his way to the stack of firewood near the edge of the yard. As soon as the weather turned cold enough he would teach his son how to ice skate, just as he promised. He and Ruby were pretty good skaters, and had spent many a winter day engaged in this pleasant sport. The smell of burning wood from the fireplace drifted in on a breeze.

​Stephen inhaled a lungful of crisp cool air and pulled his old coat a little tighter before bending to gather up an armload of wood. The wind picked up, blowing the clouds clear of the full moon, allowing bright pale yellow light to reflect off the gold of his wedding ring.

​Moonlight! Stephen’s blood surged through his veins and his heart beat a little faster. Tonight the conditions would be perfect to experience with the Mayan stone again. He kept his promise to Ruby and had not stayed late in the workshop for weeks. The show was booked and everything was ready—except he still didn’t have a special closing act—the one designed to leave them gasping with surprise and talking for days. The disembodied Omega head was good, but it would not compare to a real levitation. Perhaps tonight he could conquer the mystery of the Mayan charm. If he could harness and control its power, oh the wonders he could perform!    

Diane Wylie

Author of Adventure and Romance