Originally posted by gravriderX
TheLibra, thank you from the bottom of my heart for that advice. I beleive it worked quite well.
No problem... Sorry I went off on a soapbox in the previous post, but I'm glad to hear it worked, and that she's since taken a more serious view of
magic. Anyway, since you asked about my big huge mistake I made many years ago, I'll go ahead and share.
Storytime, everyone. Yay!
It's over a decade ago, and I'm a 17 year-old in high school. Up until I was 12 years old, I'd wanted to be a minister of for the United Methodist
Church. Then one day, I started having a lot of questions that none of the local religious leaders could answer to my satisfaction. And my world
started to tumble around me as I realized that my religion didn't hold up against the reality of the world, and the questions that I had. That was
when things kind of came full circle, and one a Martin United Methodist Minister took me aside and said that God sometimes works in mysterious ways,
and that perhaps my path didn't quite fit with Methodism, Baptism, or any of the mainstream Christian faiths. He said that most people can be happy
believing what they are told by their religion, but that I should choose my religion based off my beliefs...and thus began a road to researching
theology, different religions, philosophies, etc.
Now skip ahead about 5 years. I was now 17, and had been studying Wicca for about 4 years, because it was, at the time, the closest thing I could find
to what my personal beliefs were. However, I didn't believe in magic, and (something I maintain to this day), absolutely refused to spell it
"Magick" or "Majick" or any other silly nonsense. I figured that if someone wanted something to happen bad enough, and cast a spell for it, that
they'd find a way to make it happen subconsciously and then say it was magic what did it. After all, if magic really existed, no one would bother
working, or mowing, or doing chores... they'd just spell up some stuff to do it. So I pretty much skipped every chapter on magic in the Wicca books
(which I'm still pretty grateful on. Cunningham had some good philosophy, but his spells look like a children's coloring book).
However, I also came from a strict Christian family, in an almost exclusively Baptist community, and both my best friends were Baptist as well. They
already sorta spiritually looked down on me for being "one of those sinful Methodists", so I kept my religious perusings to myself. Still, they were
my best friends, and one of them became very sick in the head...
For the sake of having a name, we'll call him "Ian". Ian was extremely depressed for many months straight, and every week it got a little worse. He
drew up inside of himself more and more, and he often wondered what good he did the world at all. Still later, he assumed that he only made the world
a worse place for his being there. Matters were not helped by the fact that my comparatively "loose" ways with religion had influenced him. He'd
lost his religion, which he hid as best he could from his extremely Baptist mother. This was the sort of woman who tied everything into Jesus or
Satan. If your steak was good, it was due to Jesus. If it rained and we needed it, Jesus sent the rain. If we didn't need the rain, it was Satan.
Everything to her was a matter of Jesus vs. Satan. Now imagine trying to be a normal teenager with a mom like that.
Ian never really had a mother; he had a domineering live-in dramatic priestess of Jesus. Ian had a father, but apparently his father wasn't that fond
of the situation either, and took every opportunity his career offered him, to travel around the world to various geologic sites. Ian had a
girlfriend--note the word "had"--but things had gone sour. Ian had a car, but his father had taken away the keys during a recent stay at home. The
reason? He was out too late, the previous evening, getting the "we need to talk" speech from his girlfriend. Ian had friends, but they were
alienated by his depression. In short, he had no one to turn to, and despite everything I tried, he sank deeper and deeper into an emotional
Ian started talking about dying, about how the only thing that brought him joy was sleep, because he could dream about being someone else. Nights
would be spent burning himself with a cigarette, in the park we used to frequent. As the last glimmer of light in his eyes died out, I knew he was
soon to follow, and it was perhaps a matter of days before he took his own life. He called me one night, and told me I'd been a good friend, thanked
me, and said goodbye. In the background I could hear his parents screaming at him. His father yelling about discipline, his mother yelling about Jesus
and Satan. He hung up, and I knew in my heart, that that night, he was going to slough his mortal coil.
I tried to call back, but his parents had taken away his phone from his room (we didn't all have cell phones back in those days), and they asked me
not to call back till he was ungrounded. I panicked. I couldn't call the police, not on my best friend, that was a fact we'd established long ago. I
could have tried to drive over there and sneak him out, but for what good? I'd already tried everything in my power to cheer him up, to no
...or had I?
Perhaps it was by chance that I'd stacked the books too haphazardly, perhaps it was my slamming the phone down in frustration, or maybe it was a
message from the Lord and Lady (at the time, I went with the whole L&L thing). Regardless, at the moment the handset hit the receiver, a stack of
religious books decided to fall over, and one of the books on Wiccan rituals hit my foot and stayed there, pages seperated by my toe. On a whim, I
picked up the book and looked at the page it'd fallen open to, and read a sentance in bold type.
"A spell begins the moment you start to think about it."
I won't repeat the ritual I performed, for reasons that will be apparent later. It was all impromptu, using the scan knowledge I'd skimmed over, or
referenced in previously read chapters of various books, as well as folklore, and borrowing a lot from everywhere, like a salad bar. The intent of the
spell was to make Ian happy again. I just wanted him to be happy. I figured that if he could just experience a little joy, for even a short while,
he'd see that there was a point to going on living. Though I'd never believed in magic before, I put every ounce of faith and willpower into this
endeavor, and for the length of a burning candle, Ian would experience joy. After writing everything down in my journal, I went to sleep, and left the
candle burning. When I woke up, it had burnt out.
Ian and I had 2nd period together in high school, and band practice before that. But he wasn't there in band...he wasn't there in English, and more
and more I became convinced the spell didn't work, and once again, a best friend had died.
We always met for lunch in the same spot. This was back when we were allowed to leave campus for lunch, and I practically leapt in joy. There he was,
standing on the stairs. I waved in greeting, my hand lowering when I saw the scowl on his face. He walked up to me, grabbed my arm, pulling me aside
easily for his slight frame. The first words out of his mouth were "Did you cast a spell on me last night, or something?"
That just about made me wet myself. As far as Ian knew, I was still a Methodist--who, though loose compared to Baptists, are not known for
spellcasting. I knew where we were going for lunch. My house. I had to show him my journal. On the way, he related what had happened the previous
Ian's mother had given him a letter from the mail. It was from Stanford University, and looked important. Ian wanted nothing more than to attend
Stanford before he became so depressed, but hadn't heard anything back from them. When he opened the envelope and looked inside, it was a letter of
acceptance to the University, and he ran to tell his parents, who were overjoyed. As a celebration, his father gave him the keys back to his
Mitsubishi Eclipse, and his mom ceased her Jesus talk long enough to start planning how they'd get him up there that summer for orientation. During
the course of this, his girlfriend called and said she wanted to work things out, so he got his phone back and spent the evening talking to her. They
agreed to meet before first period to exchange high school rings. When he finally fell asleep that night, he was on Cloud Nine.
That morning, he awoke to find black ooze pouring out of his nose, and an image of my face in front of him. It was odorless, but quite sticky, and it
wouldn't stop pouring. It was neither blood, nor mucus. It had the consistancy of really bad engine oil, and it freaked him out to no end. So much so
that he hid in the bathroom till it stopped, which made his dad think he was going to be late, which in turned caused a big arguement between them. He
took the letter with him in the Eclipse, intending to show it off to some of his friends, and his girlfriend. En route, he glances at it and notices
it's actually addressed to his next door neighbor, Blake, who was applying for the same school. The letter had been delivered to his house by
mistake. Unfortunately, since he was looking at the letter, he failed to notice the stop sign, and ended up wrecking his car. This, in turn, caused
him to be late to school, which caused his girlfriend to assume he'd backed out on her, and distraught, let one of her guy friends comfort her. By
lunch, they'd become exclusive.
We pulled into the driveway of my house, and I ran in to get the journal, opening it to the page I'd written the previous night. He read in silence
as we drove to Taco Bell. Once we reached the parking lot of school again, Ian got out, turned around, and punched me right in the nose, breaking it.
As I bled, he asked how I liked having crap pour out of my nose, and then told me never to cast anything on him, ever again. Ian was in an even worse
place than the previous night, thanks to me, and all I'd managed in the end was to turn overwhelming depression into overwhelming anger...
Of course, eventually we became friends again. He did manage to keep from killing himself, and I devoted most of my theologic study at that point
towards figuring out the cause and effect of what happened. Eventually it was explained to me by a woman who went by the name of Phoenix that I had
cast a spell on someone without permission, and thus the backlash was incurred. At the time, I bought it as the sole reason, but wasn't satisfied
with such scant knowledge of the consequences of casting. This caused me to do a lot more studying of theology, magic, and eventually expanded,
reshaped, and redefined my views enough that I ceased to be a Wiccan some years later.
I still wonder, to this day, whether or not I actually saved him and, if I did, then at what cost? In the years following the spell, Ian went on to
drop out of college, do every drug I knew of, and some that I didn't know of, hit rock bottom, and developed a violent temper which he, thankfully,
only takes out on his own posessions, and not on people. Fate's funny like that, it seems, and for the most part, so is magic.