Eloise didn't mean to scream. She had tried her entire life, actually, to be as quiet and nonthreatening as possible. It came with the territory of having a brother who was a serial killer - his job was to be loud and intimidating and troublesome. Her job was to stay out of the way.
Unfortunately, while Eloise was watching her brother single-handedly wipe out a field of corn with fire coming straight from his palms, she had to scream.
Eloise immediately ran inside to her library, where she kept all of her favorite books. She grabbed a coffee mug left sitting on the table, filled it was water from the sink, and dashed it onto the fire. "Micah!" she shouted. "What are you thinking?"
Micah glanced up and seemed to only just then realize she was there. "Oh. Hey sis." He gave a sheepish grin. "Didn't mean for you to see that."
Eloise had many questions she wanted to ask him, fearing she already knew some of the answers, but the sound of sirens cut off her thoughts. Someone had called the fire department, which meant someone had seen Micah and his magic. Which meant her brother wasn't safe. "Come with me."
Micah knew better than to question her. He dutifully followed her to the bathroom, where she twisted a plastic turtle ninety degrees to reveal the hidden passageway leading from her house to the academy. "I'll handle this," she informed him as she ushered him in.
Micah, as usual, barreled right in without a word. Eloise barely had time to close the entrance behind her before he was already shouting. "I can't go to the academy, El! You don't know what they'll do!"
She sighed. "You got the powers illegally, I'm assuming. It's not ideal, but we can deal with it." A sudden crash brought her attention to Micah, who had inadvertently broken an underground window in his flailing. "Just try to keep yourself under control."
When they exited the tunnel, Arani was there to meet them. "Eloise!" she greeted warmly. "I was just about to lead chapel in the sanctuary. Will you be joining us?"
"Not now," Eloise told the cleric. "I need to take Micah to the career adviser."
"El," her brother asked as she led him down a hallway, "why a career adviser?"
She paused at a fork in the hallway to pull up a map on her phone. "Because illegally gained or not, the academy takes care of those with magic powers. And you need some better career options."
He scowled. "What if I like being a serial killer?"
"Doesn't pay the bills, Micah." A shrill cry echoed from outside, and she sighed. "Sounds like they're taking the new recruits out hunting. I bet we'll find Fig out there."
Her brother grumbled but followed along as she pressed a button on an inconspicuous air conditioner and it revealed a hidden door. "All this secrecy. I should have just gone into dentistry like our mom."
"You're telling me." Eloise led him through the door and into the misty forest that surrounded the academy.
The following challenges were completed during the writing exercise:
Begin Start typing to begin
Words Reach 50 words
Event Your character sees something terrifying
Words Reach 100 words
Prop Include a coffee mug
Character A reserved book-keeper
Letter Use the letter M
Event Sirens sound in the distance
Words Reach 200 words
Prop Include a turtle
Letter Use the letter U
Words Reach 300 words
Event A glass shatters
Character An enthusiastic cleric
Character A somber careers advisor
Words Reach 400 words
Letter Use the letter I
Prop Include a fork
Event A shrill cry echoes in the mist
Prop Include an air conditioner
Words Reach 500 words
Character A passive dentist
Letter Use the letter E
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