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There has been Magic at work.

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There has been "Magic" at work on the Earth for longer than anyone can imagine. There was a time when a civilization existed that was completely steeped in Magic. Modern scholars have no knowledge, or even suspicions of, its existence. That is how strong that Magic was/is. What is even more amazing is that, until sadly and recently, there were survivors of that time among us undetected. Again, a tribute to that power. Many years ago, in my younger days, my career path put me in a position to be helpful to the very last survivor of the "days of Magic" as he called them. I cannot explain what my job was, nor how I came upon some unusual information, because of confidentiality oaths related to National Security. Suffice it to say, in order to help this gentleman he was forced to take me in to his confidence. It was either use Magic in a very obvious, undeniable manner or trust me to help quietly. Something told him to take the latter course. The problem was resolved and we became friends. He made me promise never to tell the story as long as he was alive. Of course with his passing all of the corroburation of the story disappeared, or so I thought. Here are the pertinent details, to the Forum,  from the more complex history of those times that he shared with me. (I will try to use his words and put my observations in parenthesis).

"It was a time of great importance. Every individual had an effect on the whole world because all was divided. There was Good and Evil fighting for   control of the world. There was no middle ground. Even the animals were divided, at least the higher ones like dragons. Yes, they existed. So did what you call "steel" by the way. How do you think everything neccessary for humans to "discover" it was just laying around waiting for them to figure it out? "(He then went on to describe many things from today and their history. ) "......at any rate the battle was teetering on the edge. ..........

 (The old man went on to tell me about how the fate of the world has often hinged on simple, unintended or preplanned events and therefore why Man has to be constantly on guard and prepared to respond to whatever happens)" ..................

 "As time passed it was decided, by the victors, that Magic was too powerful, and led to catastrophic battles to be allowed to continue being used so broadly. From the time of that decision Magic and Good and Evil were restricted (for the most part) to dwelling in the individual heart of each Human, with a few exceptions."

Time seperated the old man and I.  We both moved to far away places.

I was working in my shop one day, about 5 years ago, it was a hot summer day and I was working on a knife. The door on my shop was open and I heard someone knock on the door frame. I turned to see the old man standing in the door.................


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Cool start Vern. I’m in...

"The way we win matters" (Ender Wiggins) Orson Scott Card


Nos, qui libertate donati sumus, nes cimus quid constet.

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There he was in a short sleeved sportshirt and khakis looking like a retired gentleman should. After greetings and small talk he asked for a favor. "I've got a small project to do and I need to borrow your forge. It would probably be best if you went about what you were doing." Anyone else and I would have thrown them out on their ear but, being as it was him, I just nodded. In a flash a hammer, of a type I had never seen before, was in his hand. It must have been a 4 pounder but he twirled it in one hand like it was a 1/2 " wooden dowel as he walked toward the forge. Something I couldn't quite see was in his other hand. I did as he suggested and went about finishing the knife on my bench as he hammered away. Time seemed to pause but, in what seemed like short order he announce " There, that's got it." When I turned from my bench there he stood one hand empty and the other dropping something in his pocket. In all of my life I'd never seen anyone make a hammer appear and disappear nor someone take something hot off an anvil and drop in their pocket. He thanked me, explaining "I just needed to get something to the right shape." He said he had some where to be and he smiled and held out  his hand to present me with a small, old-fashioned key. "You never know when a key will come in handy".

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Before he turned to leave the old man looked me in the eye and asked me if I remembered the story he had told mr about the great battle and history since then. When i said "Yes, of course." He simply said "Good" and was gone.

I went to my bench and sat down. Seeing him again it was easy to bring the story back to mind.......


"The air was foul with the dragon stench. The last of the warriors were spending the last of their energy. The very leader of the army of the Good, by the name of...".

(forget it folks. I can get around in a few languages but there is nothing today that comes close. Our alphabet can't cover it)

"...was killed when his Magic sword... (another unpronounceable/unspellable) shattered on a sheild that had a spell on it to thwart that particular sword. The shield was held by the Evil warrior (unpronouncable). With this turn of events the battle, indeed the fate of the world, seemed sealed. It would have been but for a simple turn of fate. The Evil warrior, sensing victory began to display his pleasure and, in a flash of justice, tripped over an exposed tree root and fell, impaling himself on one single shard of the shattered sword."

(The old man went on to tell me about how the fate of the world has often hinged on simple, unintended or preplanned events and therefore why Man has to be constantly on guard and prepared to respond to whatever happens)

" The Evil warrior was literally turned inside out at the point where the shard pierced his skin he then burst into flames and was completely immolated. This is the power the sword had. Seeing this the remainder of the Evil Army fled to the shadows hiding from the light given off from their leader's conflagration. Since then Evil has always sought to hide in the dark. This victory brought about what was called "the first era of peace". The downside to this was, as the light of good and truth shines it creates shadows for evil to hide in."

" The remaining warriors on both sides were few but sufficient in number to give a beginning to the race of Man. Among the Good, who survived the battle, one set to work gathering the shards of the shattered sword as well as other talismen from the battlefield."

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That day in my shop was the last time I saw the old man. A little over a year ago I got a call from a friend who owns the hardware store/UPS terminal in town. He said a semi truck had pulled up and the driver had come in asking about getting an important package delivered to me. Not totally unheard of because driving a rig up here in the mountains, if you don't know the road is a bad idea. The driver had insisted on waiting for me so he could hand deliver his package.  Somehow I knew who it was from. Not that many people could have found me and had a package delivered so oddly. My guess was confirmed when I saw the package. Where a return address would customarily be were the letters "T. O. M."

"I guess you knew him?" The driver asked.

" knew? I guess that means......"

" umhmm. " the driver nodded. "Last week. He was my neighbor. He left that package with me. He was......well.. how well did you know him?"

"Well enough not to be surprised at "this" or just about anything that could happen connected to him."

"That tells it all then. Well, good luck with whatever.....he gave me some other things to do. The..kind..of person he was, you do them."

With that he climbed in his truck and left. I had to go into the hardware store, if for no other reason than to assure my friend all was on the "up and up" with this slightly odd event. It seemed understandable that I would want to open the package in private. That key the old man had given me was on my key ring where I had immediately put it. I had a feeling it was going to be a part of whatever lay ahead.

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