‘You are kidding me. It only happens in story books.’
‘Trust me, I have met this man and I have seen his collection of magic potions.’
‘Did you try any? Did it work?’
‘Did I try? Of course I tried, but he has forbidden me to tell anyone about it.’
‘This is all jiggery-pokery.’
But Franek did not turn back. He was willing to believe that his friend was well acquainted with some magic-man who lived in a forest far away from his friend’s village.
The magic-man’s hut was almost hidden behind big, dense trees. It was in a pathetic condition. But as they entered the hut, Franek was surprised to see that the interior was spacious and well furnished.
The magic-man was quite old; he was shockingly ugly. But after a few minutes Franek realized that what he was seeing was not the real face of the magic-man; he was wearing a hideous mask and he had painted his body with garish colours.
‘Looking for a magical power? But you may not be prepared to pay the price.’
The magic-man’s harsh tone unnerved Franek. But egged on by his friend he said, ‘Can you give me x-ray vision?’
‘You too?’ the magic-man laughed; it was a sinister laugh that unnerved Franek.
‘What does that mean?’ Franek asked meekly.
‘It means you will never grow up. But let me advise, you may not find x-ray vision very exciting.’
‘It would be a fascinating power to have,’ Franek said rather impatiently.
‘Are you willing to pay the price?’
‘You will have to pledge your soul to me.’
Franek promptly agreed, he had always thought that soul was a fiction created by religious people to exploit the ignorant.
‘Prick the little finger of your right hand and let the blood drip into this bowl.’ He placed before him a bowl containing a greenish substance.
Blood dripping from Franek’s finger turned the greenish matter into a blackish syrup. The magic-man took a sip from the bowl and then sprinkled a few drops of that magic potion into Franek’s eyes.
‘At sun rise you will get the x-ray vision.’
Franek was excited about the power he was going to acquire, ‘It would be real fun and no one would even know that I have x-ray vision. ’
But the sun rise left him devastated. Everything around him looked different and unearthly.
He could see nothing but the bones of every living being around him. Everyone appeared like a radio-graphic image of himself. He was in a world that was full of living skeletons.
He wanted to scream but could not. The magic had worked and he had acquired the x-ray vision.
You may like to read previous stories