The Ion, the Witch, and the Murderer

The wizard solemnly dipped his quill into the ink. He did not look forward to his obligatory assignment. Quickly, he began scrawling words across the page, rushing miserably. It was certainly not enjoyable to write up an obituary, especially one as intimate as this. It had been his closest friend who died. No, he shook his head, who was murdered. He sighed restlessly and folded the completed obituary, mindful not to catch the corner of the paper on his desk's candle.

Suddenly, a stern witch materialized beside him. "You done yet?" Her voice was cackling and unpleasant and the wizard immediately recognized her as his boss, Mefira.

"Yes ma'am." He handed her the document. She smiled at him, an empty gesture of formality, and raised her wand to vanish back to her gloomy office.

"Wait," the wizard, still seated, stopped Mefira by grasping her outstretched wand. "One minute."

"What is it, Ion?" Mefira's characteristic impatience zoomed into view.

Ion, the literary wizard, replied ominously, "You'll see."

Mefira looked angry, as if she wanted to depart despite Ion's insistence. But somewhere, perhaps, a seed of curiosity was buried inside her.

Ion didn't care. He'd learned to deal with his employer's follies and was not concerned by her disapproval. He simply waited, seated at his desk, quill in hand.

Ion's quill rarely left his secure grip. He was a journalist wizard; his quill was his occupation. At the age of eighty-seven, he was the youngest wizard in the business. And he looked young despite the folds of his cloak. He had straight, anime-esque hair, which still retained its natural blue-black color. His angular face surrounded his intense green eyes and housed his cartoony mouth. His whole head was, at this moment, staring around the room, as impatient as Mefira and nervous.

"Soon?" Mefira inquired vaguely.

Ion nodded, as, rather coincidentally, another witch barged in through the door. Ion watched Mefira's already sour face convulse into a putrid form.

"Sabrina?" Mefira wasn't quite as shocked as annoyed by the witch's appearance. They were, so to speak, arch nemeses of the highest degree. True, they were also sisters, but it was simple to overlook that aspect of their relationship.

"Good evening," Sabrina greeted them apprehensively. Floundering her purple robe, Sabrina flowed over to an armchair and sat upon it. Ion watched as she brushed aside her splotchy hair, a potpourri of light browns and golds and spoke, "Well, why did you call me here?"

"Humph," Mefira grunted, "so you aren't in on this, Sabrina."

"Are you sister?" Sabrina treated her sister to an icy glare and then sat quietly and patiently. She had inhabited many gentler traits than her sister along with a worse first name. Because her name's lack of cadence demented her corporate success, she changed her name to Sabrina.

"No," Mefira replied, "I'm not involved. If I was I wouldn't be here right now."

"Ah." Sabrina conjured a small glass. "Still seeing life as half empty I see." To emphasize her point, Sabrina conjured a half a glass of water. Sabrina then continued, "You know what I believe sis? I think that the glass is half full, and the only thing to do with half a glass of water is to dump it on an enemy."

Mefira screamed unpleasantly, as she was now thoroughly wet. Sabrina had ended her speech by toppling the glass of water onto Mefira. "I guess there's something in that glass. Or at least there was."

"Now, now," Ion said diplomatically, "everything will begin shortly."

"Everything?"

Ion's eyes glazed over briefly as he received a vague sensation of incoming magic. It was a vision from the future. In it, his third and final guest was arriving, and right on time. "Any second now."

The remaining guess made a theatrical entrance. A blinding flash of light and crackling bang accompanied his sudden entrance. "Ah, Iota I see you made it," Ion smiled at his brother.

"Sure bro," Iota beamed briefly then went over to the armchairs where Sabrina was perched. He leaned on Sabrina's arm, her chair arm, and grinned at her. Iota was younger than his brother by at least thirty years. His looks were therefore more astounding, and his slender features—face, waist, etc.—mesmerized many young witches, including Sabrina who was lost in his turquoise eyes. His sleek black hair, which hung over his eyes imperiously, shined darkly in the room's bland candlelight.

Iota was, in his fashion, silently flirting with Sabrina. Ion sighed, his brother would always flirt with women. Witches like Sabrina, young and attractive, were his consistent target. Not as if he did anything appalling to the girls, in fact, Ion didn't believe he good. His conscience and empathy restrained him from such venues.

Mefira spoke up, "Now, if Iota would stop flirting with my sister, I'd like to know why you've gathered us here."

Ion replied quickly. "Why? It's very important. Involving that doc-"

Iota rudely interrupted, "Oh come on, I'm not flirting."

Mefira's bitter face shot an inquisitive look at Iota. "Oh really? I don't you see you sitting on the arm of my chair."

"Um, Mefira," Sabrina interjected, amused, "you aren't sitting in a chair, how could he sit on its arm?"

Ion sighed helplessly and went off to the kitchen to fetch himself a cup of tea while they sorted themselves out. Ion heaved himself to the kitchen and put a kettle upon the stove. He filled the kettle and lit the fire magically but decided to wait for the boiling water and not to speed it up magically. Even over the roar of the flame, Ion could here his guests bickering from the kitchen.

"You wouldn't flirt with me." Ion heard Mefira say.

"Yeah," Iota replied ruefully, "but that's because you're an ugly old hag."

"A hag!" Mefira was indubitably offended.

"Yes, you have a scowling face with warts."

"These are not warts."

"Did I mention your brooding brown eyes and evil grin?"

"No," Mefira said, "you haven't."

"Well, they're ugly."

"Why thank you, Iota, you've just ruined my shining gold self-esteem. Would you like to go on?" From his position in the kitchen, Ion couldn't be sure just how mad Mefira was and why Sabrina wasn't stepping in between them. The kettle began to rattle and shake with a ferocity similar to that of Ion's bickering guests.

"I would like to continue, thank you. You have the figure of a hippopotamus and are more wrinkled than mother earth."

"And you're Prince Charming?" Mefira grumbled.

"No, but I don't think I'm repulsive like you are."

Strange that they should be arguing like this, Ion thought. After all, Iota had an agreeable personality and Mefira wasn't too easily offended. Maybe they were stressed out or upset over something maybe… The tea kettle shrieked loudly as, almost simultaneously, a shot rang out from the other room.

Ion twirled his wand so that the tea would pour and steep itself, then sprinted into the other room. If something terrible had happened here, he'd need the tea to calm himself down. Ion entered the room were the bickerees were situated and looked around. Mefira's wand was still held outstretched and smoking. She had blasted a hole in the armchair, right near Iota's thigh, where Sabrina had been sitting. Where Sabrina was, Ion could only guess.

"Oh my goodness." Ion could barely speak. "Okay, it is definitely as I suspected. Both of you sit down, calm down, and quiet down." Ion conjured seats beneath his houseguests then caught the tray with the tea as it flew in from the kitchen.

"Ah, green tea with mint," Ion took a luxurious sip, "anyone else?" Both Iota and Mefira shook their heads so Ion continued, "well then, where is Sabrina?"

"Mefira blasted her away," Iota said.

"I did not," Mefira retorted, "she ran out when we were arguing."

"Sorry brother, I will have to agree with Mefira on this one." Ion sipped another steaming gulp of tea. "It is essential that she be here, however, so I shall summon her back."

Ion waved his wand and Sabrina, along with a suffocating cloud, appeared seated in an armchair. Sabrina was crying into her hands and was startled by her own sudden entrance.

"Pardon me." Sabrina sniffled.

"Are you okay?"

"I'll be fine," Sabrina insisted meekly, "may I have a cup of tea?"