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One


I listen to my mother teaching the young ones under the casuarina. The children sit rapt, not even distracted by the sparkling trinkets and glass pieces hanging on the casuarina. It is our praying tree, our wishing tree – and yet, the children listen as if they are sea sponges soaking in everything.


My mother's face is serene. The path of life has been kind to her of late. Her right palm cups a spinning ball of green light while she explains that we are all connected, linked to the land around us. Water, light, earth, fire – the land feeds us, gives us strength, gives us life.


I wonder what my gift is. Indeed, I wonder who and what I am. I am certainly no magic user. I can only see taste words and see colors.


Mother. Green-blue, with the taste of sweet water.


Fire. Gold, with brittleness in the mouth, like ting ting tang.


And my own name. Kindness. Two colors, brown and grey. Something sharp, like citrus, the taste of limau purut.


I am no magic user.


It is ironic, because I am daughter to the famous Mirra, the woman whom everyone flocks to, when they want to learn about magic. It is ironic, because I know my mother is also watching me. For signs. For any indication of my magical inclination. I am fifteen. I ought to be showing signs of something.

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