Edie listened as Ginny explained how to find your inner magic, even though she already thought she knew the basics. She wanted to make sure that she got everything right. And Ginny’s description was slightly different from what Edie remembered, or imagined, so she was glad she was listening.
“I’d like you all to close your eyes and sit quietly for a moment. Ignore the candle in front of you and the classroom around you for the time being. Don’t think of anything but my voice. Try not to fidget, if you can.” Ginny’s voice grew warm for the last sentence, and someone laughed.
Edie knew how to sit quietly, though she was a little confused. Wasn’t this how you got ready for trance magic? They weren’t starting with that, were they?
“All right, my next instructions will be a little more difficult to follow, but I want you to do your best to look within. Inside each of you is a core of magic. Some have a smaller core, some bigger, some vast. That doesn’t necessarily mean you will do better or worse with elemental magic, and remember, as long as you try your best, you will not fail this class just because you have less inherent magical ability.
“I can’t tell you where to look or even give you any better explanation than to look within. You’re actually looking, with your mind’s eye, into your physical body. Maybe the metaphor you need is searching, seeking, feeling with your mental hands. Whatever you can come up with to find something that is inside your body, but not physically present, use it.”
Edie heard a couple of gasps in the room. She couldn’t tell where they were coming from—she was too busy concentrating. She couldn’t find anything so far that felt like magic.
“I can’t tell you what it will look like or feel like when you find it, either,” Ginny continued. “To some people, it is light. To some people, it is a texture or a feeling or even a smell. It depends on your own perceptions. You will find it concentrated or diffused, bright or dark or in between.”
Diffused. Edie remembered that Dawn had described her magic when she was looking at it using trance magic. She’d said that while her magic and Corrie’s were like bright lights located specifically somewhere in their bodies, Edie’s was more spread out—sparkling all over, in a cloud of light, like the magic of faeries and natural things, but with more light.
She carefully extended her senses, her attempt to ‘see’ the inside of her body, until she was looking at it all at once.
There it was.
It felt oddly familiar, a nonphysical tingling all over her body, as though she was enveloped in a warm, dry cloud that did not extend beyond the boundaries of her skin. She thought about those metaphors, and rejected them, but they stayed in her mind anyway, because there was no better metaphor for her sensations.
Her eyes fluttered open and she stared around the room, especially at Ginny. Most people seemed to still be concentrating, but Ginny smiled at her. Edie tried to smile back, but she was too focused on being aware of her magic.
It still felt very safe and familiar. Had she done this before? She couldn’t remember, but maybe she had when she was a child, before she could have known what was and wasn’t normal.
She wondered how much of this she had inherited from her great-grandmother.
“All right, if you’re still looking, you may keep looking,” Ginny said. “But if this feels difficult, or if you’ve already found it, open your eyes and pick up your candle.”
Edie put two fingers on her candle and straightened it, resting its bottom on her desk. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Darcy and Derwen do the same, though Derwen was still hunched over and frowning.
“We will now be attempting to use our magic to light the candles,” Ginny said. She had a candle in her hand, and she held it up so they could all see. “For those of you who haven’t located your magic yet, it may be easier to do it when you have a goal, especially if fire magic is one of your strengths. Now, what I want you to do is focus on the candle, reach for your magic, and tell the candle to light.”
She closed her eyes and held the candle straight out in front of her with both hands. After a moment, a flame suddenly flared to life. There were gasps and “oohs” throughout the classroom. Edie smiled. She was pretty sure that Ginny had made that a little more theatrical than was necessary.
Ginny opened her eyes. “If it’s not quite that easy—and it won’t be for most of you—feel free to experiment with words and gestures. Anything you can think of to focus your magic may help.” The candle went out. “I’ll be walking around the classroom as you attempt this, and don’t worry about danger—if any injuries occur, I will be there to heal them. I ask that you save questions until you have been working at this for some time. Now, please begin.”
Edie looked at her candle. She reached for her magic. She told the candle to light.