Showmanship

Posted: December 11, 2013 in Writing
Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Ryan Sargent saw some pretty crazy things in the city of Ebonton recently. I know that seems to be a constant for him, but there you go. Has he been fooled by an amazingly clever stunt or has he truly witnessed the supernatural again? Let’s see what he has to say for himself…

“I don’t know why i try to enjoy myself. My leisure time always seems to end up sprouting questions about the supernatural somehow. Perhaps I’m cursed or something. I went to watch some theatre shows recently. The shows were amazing, as i expected. Full of amazing magician tricks and some pretty unbelievably dangerous stunts. One in particular was quite something to behold. An absolutely gorgeous young woman began the stunt by saying some strange words in an unknown language. This struck me as bizarre straight away.  Then she motioned to the stage crew to activate the machine at the other end of the stage. This machine was unlikely to pass any health and safety checks whatsoever. It was a series of rings a few feet apart that were held up on end, almost like a tunnel. The insides of the rings were quite clearly circular saws of some kind. The rings then began to move about independently of each other, creating a pretty hellish obstacle course for our young stunt woman.

What followed defied any rational explanation!

The stunt woman held her arms out to the side. Then, slowly but surely, the woman began to levitate slowly. The audience was dumbfounded of course! But i got that sinking feeling in my belly that i always got when something supernatural was nearby, call it a monster hunters intuition! The woman levitated about 3 feet off the floor and stopped. Then she said some more unearthly sounding words. She turned slowly towards the obstacle course of death, still in the air. In a matter of moments the woman had performed some form of elaborate spin and burst through the air, passing unharmed through the spinning blades. Dodging and spinning while moving through a tunnel of saws of death? The audience was amazed! My eyes narrowed. The woman touched down on the stage at the other end of the machine again. The show was over. What a stunt right? I believe it was something different.

I had to read up on this. Check out some legends of magicians and the like. I don’t believe that it was some clever trick. I’m certain of it, it was magic! Now I’ve seen a good number of monsters in my time, but humans with the ability to wield magical abilities? That’s a new one. Of course, its not much of a stretch. There have been stories of wizards, medicine-men and witches since the dawn of recorded history. Conveniently enough, i found a legend pertaining to the very area this city was built on. I won’t get into how i found this for professional reasons. The legends of the Showmen. Wizards who used their powers to wow and confound the populace. Sounds harmless enough right? Not so.

Magic is real. We all think that the stage magicians and puppeteers are merely entertainers, but beneath the veil of their mundane practices lies a wholly different truth. These cryptic denizens of the world refer to themselves as the ‘Showmen’. Their gift, though impressive and awe-inspiring, may be more rare than many of the other denizens of the unknown world. They call it ‘Showmanship’ or the ‘Power of Purple’. An ancient gift from the heavens, depths or the aether (who knows?). Given to a small number of people who were forced under oath by some unknown being to keep the art of Showmanship secret. They were, however, encouraged to train others in the ways of their art but were told to draw new initiates from the dispossessed or the homeless. Presumably so as not to arouse suspicion. The reason why this magic is to be kept a secret is, unsurprisingly, also a secret.

As the legend goes, the gift of Showmanship was given to approximately 20 people by an unknown yet unbelievably mighty and persuasive being. There are conflicting views on what exactly the being was. Was it a god (or THE God) that passed down the power? Could it of been some Demon? Satan? An Elemental? Others still say that there was some kind of fairy baron who wished to turn these humans into some kind of perfect entertainers for some obscure reasons. Another told of an imp who tried to take control of these people and somehow messed it up. There seem to be countless theories, each with contradicting ideas and evidence. In truth, nobody truly knows where Showmanship came from. Showmanship, by its very own nature, is hard to categorize. Showmen seem to be able do almost anything. From generating different colour lights to creating devastating flames, from levitation to  invisibility. It’s a scary thing to imagine in the wrong hands and yet there doesn’t seem to be any accounts of the power being used to harm. Perhaps that was another tenet of the original trainers. Perhaps it is simply used to entertain, to beguile, to confound.

It’s strange when i seem to find a new supernatural thing that appears to be completely harmless. I always expect to find some kind of horrific being that feasts upon human flesh. Or a creature that wants to turn humans into its slaves. Showmanship would be dangerous in the wrong hands true, but keeping it safe and confined to the theatre seems to be the very point. I don’t know what to think. I have to be missing something. I feel this particular aspect of the supernatural world needs further investigation, there are far too many blanks here. I’m certain to be missing something…”

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