DiscoverMagical Realism

My Life as a Magician



What would you do if your greatest talent – the one thing you naturally excelled at – was a dark art you desperately didn’t want to practise?

That’s the dilemma trapping Arcadia Guzmata. As a young magician who reads minds, she’s all-too-aware of the darker potential her gift carries. It’s a potential her mentor, Mr Bishop, actively nurtures as they travel from town to town, performing magic shows.

Mr Bishop’s own gift is making things disappear; and Arcadia has watched him struggle time and time again to keep it from consuming him. She knows she wants a better life for herself, but what else is there for a young woman with two pigtails and a gift for the dark arts?

Then, one day, as she’s sitting in a café, the most beautiful music she’s ever heard leads to a life-changing conversation. With that one conversation, a whole new world opens up for her.

But can she step into that world and leave her dark gift behind?


I come from a magical time. A place and time of magic and mystique. Where things that may seem out of the ordinary to you happened as regular everyday occurrences.

Back then I was a magician. I could conjure up all sorts of things. If you wanted it to rain so your crops could grow, I could make it happen. If you wanted to learn new languages so you could travel, I could add them to your tongue. If you wanted to have more food on your plate, I could expand what you've got.

Back then magicians all had their own specialties, and only practised within their scope.

My specialty? Reading people's minds.

One could say I was a black magician. Reading people's minds is not a noble trick. It was my belief that our minds are sacred and not for the free reading of others. This was, however, my specialty. My gift. My talent. The magic ability that came most naturally to me. It was my burden. My demise.

And so it was. I, Arcadia Guzmata, was a black magician who read people's minds.

About the author

Anna Shelley is known for her ambient meditative music. She weaves her signature dreamy tones through her music, which spills over into her writing - from her Meditations book to her fiction. view profile

Published on November 13, 2019

30000 words

Genre: Magical Realism

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