Bret by Barb Wire" Phillips

My mind drifted back to those innocent summer days. You know, before you catch yourself staring at the hot girl next door. For me, that time was 4th grade. My three friends and I had entered a talent show.

Our talent was the only thing I've ever been good at: Magic tricks. Not any of that 'pick a card' crap. That was Scott's part.

My name is Bret Haupart.

"Well Bret?" the man asked me, "What-do-ya say? You in or out?" Like I was saying, I'm Bret Haupart. I'm a 19-year-old street performer. I go all across America letting people in on how real magicians operate.

The three men I'm talking to now just saw me pull a rabbit from a spectator's wig. Now, they me on TV.

"Not interested." I said. I got up from my seat and walked out of the restaurant.

Marcus, the big guy who resembled an overweight rapper, chased after me, "Bret! Just think about it. You can be a household name! You,"

I cut him short, "'Could be the next big thing'. 'At your age, you could build an empire before you're 30.' I've heard it all before."

I graduated high school at 17, got an RV, and started my job. Right now, I'm in Santa Cruz California and Marcus can't take a hint.

!

"Bret," he pleaded as we headed for the beach, "Just hear me out."

I stopped him again, "I said 'no'. If you can't respect your client's decision, why should I be your client?"

"Can…you at least…"

Remember the 'overweight rapper' comment? Yeah, he's having trouble keeping up with me.

He panted, "B-Bret!"

I stopped to humor him, "Here." I pulled out a quarter, "Tails means I say yes, heads means leave me the hell alone." I flipped my two sided coin letting Marcus catch it and I'm sure you can tell how it went.

!

About half a mile away from them, I laid on the sand of the pacific.

I stared at the azure sky letting the water trickle under my legs.

I remembered my first show.

!

Courtney, who was a year older than me, opened with a riveting and gut-wrenching trick. She swallowed 5 pens (without chewing); put a string down her throat and pulled them out making a lovely pendent. She was always the one who really got into our pranks at school.

Then came my first girlfriend, Kat. Well, we didn't date until we were 14. You get the point.

'Point' wasn't a good word to use. Her act was to pull a rabbit out of a spectator's jacket. Then grab a fake sword and when she hit the 'rabbit', doves fly out from the smoke. She was crying backstage cause she thought she might hurt the rodent. One time, Kat beat the hell out of Scott for making her think her pet bird was sick.

Speaking of Scott, he almost stole the show multiple times from me. He used new and old tricks with 52 items meant to gamble was his style.

He would throw all the cards into a hat 20 feet away, in synch, and over 3 people. His finale was turning the Queen of Diamonds into our Science teacher Ms. Turner.

He's the one who got me the RV in a poker game in Dallas. That was mainly because he owed me a lot money.

Then came the main event: me.

I stood in the rafters of the school auditorium with the lights.

When everyone saw where I was, I jumped. At 30 feet, Scott ran a blanket over me shielding the audiences view for a second.

When the blanket landed, I didn't. I had vanished the remaining 10 feet. My favorite trick Kat called, 'The Wizard'.

!

Back to the present.

Why did I say no?

Simple reason: Money cost too much. I don't want my fans to pay hundreds of dollars for what cost me dozens. My name is Bret Haupart.

I'm the last magician of the century.

END