Julie meditates.

Julie researches.

Julie talks with her wife and daughter.

She spends hours a day looking at various ways to activate her powers, or at least it seems that way to us. She sits at her computer, transfixed to it and gaining quite a bit of weight from the lack of activity over these months.

Luckily for her, most of that weight is turned into muscle thanks to her rigorous workout routine. After the fridge broke last month, she took it outside and turned to lifting it above her head and doing squats, or bench presses, or any other kind of lift. It works up a sweat all over her body, for sure, but she always manages to complete her daily circuits.

By now, she has also stopped dyeing her hair or wearing contacts. The hair has all reverted back to its original pink, and it has grown much longer, too, all the way down to her shoulders.

Today, all her attention seems to be focused on the computer. She discovered an ancient book on magic written in Heian Era Japan. Summaries of it indicate that it is about a pink-haired girl who comes into contact with a mysterious otherworldly being and is granted a single wish, which gives her tremendous powers but at a perilous cost. She and other friends fight off magical creatures that are otherwise invisible to the naked eye, and attempt to grow as people.

Unfortunately, it isn’t translated, and Gtranslate is notoriously unhelpful when it comes to Japanese, especially Japanese that is a thousand years old.

But Julie pulls up Gtranslate anyway and scans the entire content of the book into the app. All the Japanese text on one side, and all the machine translated English on the other. It’s almost completely worthless.

Even so, Julie points her mouse over the text-to-speech function, as if listening to the text might help her understand the attempted translation better. But, for some reason, she clicks the Japanese side instead.

The computer begins speaking in robotic flat-toned voice, in a language Julie has never studied in her life.

And then...

Julie’s face shifts. Her eyes go wide.

And then, only a few minutes later, her system activates.

Light sparkles up around her. Her pink eyes flash in bright monocolor, and her glasses crack from the sheer force.

Energy, Life Points most likely, swirls all around her, and she moves her head rapidly to see just what is going on.

Then, a second later, a beam of light shoots up above her, passing through the roof and shooting up into the sky all the way to the stratosphere.

And, jumping back in shock, a ball of flames sprouts on her right hand.

A [Fireball.]

It launches directly forward and incinerates her computer.

A few moments pass before Julie’s heart rate calms down to close to normal levels. But, for a few minutes longer, she simply stares at the floor with those cracked glasses still on.

“Holy shit,” she whispers to herself.



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About the author

B. A. Baker (Thedude3445)

Bio: I like to watch movies.

Avatar art by Bryan Lee O'Malley.

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