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The Chronicles of the Magical Programmer: Chapter 8

Magic. To some, it is an art to be perfected. A way to express oneself. The incarnation of one’s being. The idea that Magic could be a way of expressing someone is interesting. An example of this is when I visited the world with people who could manipulate only the classical elements through movements with their bodies. There was a boy who grew to be a close friend who had an arrow on his head. Through his ability to bend air currents to his will, I saw his fear. Fear of listening to his destiny. As he learned the other elements, I could see that fear dwindle.

 

 Perhaps Magic is simply a tool. A tool that can be used for destruction or creation. A tool that can defend or attack. I remember being in a world that I in my youth found irrational. Magic was used everywhere by the wizards. It was used to clean dishes and broom the house. That same magic was also used to cast curses capable of killing instantly on impact. Yet what I found hard to cope with was the fact that there was no order. The magic was too formless.

 

To me, Magic is neither of these things. Magic can give insight into one’s feelings and thoughts and it could be just a simple tool. However, I see magic as a science. Something which can be studied and explored. I didn’t enforce the rules of science on it as that would be preposterous. Magic was capable of flipping the middle finger to the laws of momentum, entropy, mass, conservation of energy. Rather I established its own rules. More specifically, I established rules on my own magic. Through constant experimentation, I discovered different phenomena in the universe.

 

Now, will I ever find out all the rules to magic? Most likely not but my experimenting on magic, I find out details on universes and different phenomena” -Future Magnus

 

Magnus gulped loudly as he felt Dormammu’s glare. ‘If I fuck up, I die. If I don’t do it….I die. It’s like death is waiting for me whatever I do’ He thinks as his breathing begins to quicken. He starts feeling dizzy as the world began to spin around him.

 

He stops and attempts to control his breathing. ‘I have to think this through. Panicking won’t help me at all and will just result in me dying.’ Magnus thinks as he responds. “I can do it!”

 

“Well then get on it,” Dormammu said to him as he seemingly disappeared into flames.

 

Magnus continues to control his breathing as he sits down to meditate in an attempt to get control of his feelings and mind. As he attempted to gain control over himself, a memory came to mind.

 

“Again.”

 

“I’m getting tired of this. I keep doing the same thing with absolutely no change or variation!”

 

“Magnus. Tell me what you think of when you throw a fireball?”

 

“I think of basic things like the amount of ma- the energy it takes, how to reduce the cost, how to make it burn faster and easier,-” Magnus said before he was interrupted.

 

“No. No. No. I see your problem. You think way too much about your strange bending. You need to clear your thoughts and stop thinking so much.”

 

“Stop thinking? Iroh, these are necessary things for any s- I mean for my strange bending to work. Otherwise, I’ll fail.”

 

“Come sit down with me” Iroh says while sipping some tea. He pats a patch of grass next to him for Magnus to sit down.

 

Magnus sat down next to him sighing. “What do you want me to do, Old Man”

 

“Breath. Sit down and just take some time to breathe” Iroh says as he takes an extremely deep breath. “You’re always thinking. Just experience life. Close your eyes and just focus on your breathing”

 

He had tried to simply breathe but then he started thinking about his own breath. Was he breathing too fast? Perhaps it was too slow. Was he taking too much air? Several thoughts raced through his mind -messing up his breathing.

 

“Magnus! Just breathe. Focus on the energy moving through your body. Feel it travel from the well of chi in your stomach to your hands”

 

Breath in. Magnus’s chest swells in size as it takes in the air. Breath out. His chest decreases -letting out the air. As he continued this pattern, he forgot all about the different troubles in his life. Finding Aang and the group….getting back home. For the first time in his life, he wasn’t worried about something.

‘Now. To get to work’ Magnus thought as he set up what he called The Interface which was how he examined and altered magical phenomena. Several formulas and code popped up in the air much like a hologram. ‘This is the code of the different energies in my arm’ He thinks as he examines it further.

 

‘The arm is containing a bunch of different energy structures. I can see that it has resemblances to Dormammu’s due to  *̵̯͖̗̒(̶̦̻̂̚͜)̷͍̉͂&̵͙̻͇͔́́^̵̼̥̱̱͛̚ The different energy structures aren’t meant to be combined. Like how a child puts a square-shaped block in a triangle one. They are trying to repel each other much like a magnet. However, the program is forcing them to stay inside the vessel…me.’  Magnus thinks as he flips through the different code on the interface.

 

‘Meaning if I can eliminate the program from functioning then the energies would be released from my arm!’ Magnus thinks as he begins to smile before realizing something. ‘It’s autonomous! Normally spells end after it loses a magical source to execute the program. However, this spell is working independently of my own magic! Meaning that ending the connection has no effect’ He starts grinding his teeth together before an idea forms.

 

“Grand Modification! Normally when I add modifiers, they simply change one component of the spell such as its shape. In this case, it’s different. I’m gonna have to modify an entire energy structure. The original energy structure is terrible as it simply mashes together different structures. But that multiple energy structure is the main problem. Changing the formation of one of them could set off a chain reaction that ends up with an even worse result” Magnus had muttered to himself as he whispered an incantation to himself.

 

‘Let’s start with the Dormammu energy structure due to me being the most familiar. I’ll change *̵̯͖̗̒(̶̦̻̂̚͜)̷͍̉͂&̵͙̻͇͔́́^̵̼̥̱̱͛̚   to _̷̧̐̀͂*̷̛̫͙̼̒̈́̈^̷̢͔̥̔̿~̵͓̳̳͇̽̇)̴͙͊͌ “ He said to himself as he programmed a modification to one of the energy structures and saves the change. Instantly a reaction occurs, _̷̧̐̀͂*̷̛̫͙̼̒̈́̈^̷̢͔̥̔̿~̵͓̳̳͇̽̇)̴͙͊͌  didn’t complete the chain as well as *̵̯͖̗̒(̶̦̻̂̚͜)̷͍̉͂&̵͙̻͇͔́́^̵̼̥̱̱͛̚  causing the chain to break down -with the chains energy components broken down, they would be absorbed by other structures which would cause the same effect. In short, all the structures break down into basic components of energy which cause a violent reaction -an explosion.

 

Magnus’s arm had begun to become bubbly as the bubbles popped creating a powerful explosion. The bubbles continued up from his arm to his shoulder and eventually his entire body. The explosion had a purple color and blew everything away from it. However, the area glew with a green shade as everything reverted. Bits of Magnus’s body flew back together and the debris from the explosion returned to their original spots.

 

He took deep gasps of air as he clenched his chest. Magnus was shocked that it actually worked. He had set up a checkpoint of sorts that would activate if his life force was destroyed. Making it so that when he died, time would rewind to the save point. However, he remembered something before he came back.  He was in a dark tunnel and a figure too far away to make out any details.

 

Magnus shook his head and went back to work. He was scared of his experience with death. Scared with the idea of actually going through that tunnel, meeting the ominous figure who awaited him. However, through pure will, he pushed through and this time changed *̵̯͖̗̒(̶̦̻̂̚͜)̷͍̉͂&̵͙̻͇͔́́^̵̼̥̱̱͛̚  to ~̶̨͇́̋͑̆͜#̶̣͙͕́̏/̸̮͉̓͊̏)̶̦̥̈́(̸̬̃ and saved the modification. Rather than the chain destabilizing, it was now becoming more repulsed by the other energy structures and broke off pieces of them. Causing a distortive effect that caused the arm to function akin to a black hole -sucking Magnus and the area up. Once again, Time had reverted itself.

 

Dormammu watched in the shadows -unaffected by the reversal of time. By now, he had watched Magnus die over 1,000 times.  The first time Magnus died, he wasn’t shocked but expected it as this was the work beyond Magnus’s station. As it went on, however, he had been shocked by Magnus’s determination and will to continue killing himself over and over again.

 

Magnus had been freaking out. Each time he died, the figure had come closer and closer. The closer they came, the easier it was to see them. It was a skeleton in pitch, black robes. The last time he had gone there, the figure was holding up 1 finger and said raspy, “ One more time “ and held its hand out to Magnus’s face. 

 

He knew he couldn’t fuck up anymore. If he did, there would be no second or rather two-thousand and one chance.  He would remain dead. The thought of that frightened Magnus to the point that his body broke out into a sweat. What would be on the other side of the tunnel? Would he have a punishment for escaping death so many times? Would he still have a body and a mind? Or would he vanish into nothingness? 

 

Magnus was about to call it quits before he remembered what his master told him. To stop thinking. And stop thinking he did. He didn’t think “If I mess up with one single modification -I die”. He simply went with the flow. Magnus for the first time in his life went with what he felt rather than what he thought. As his fingers danced on the holographic keyboard, Magnus felt all the different energy structures shifting and moving. When he felt that a modification could cause a structure to break, he quickly changed course. When he pressed save, he waited for what would happen. 

 

Unbearable pain. Magnus screamed into the air as he felt the energy structures in his arm fit themselves together. It was comparable to the feeling of drinking red, hot iron. Tears that streamed from his face vaporized due to the sheer heat coming from his red, hot arm. Gasp.  He took a deep breath in and out as he clutched his arm in his hands. He had done it. A task far beyond his station as an apprentice sorcerer.

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