“I still don’t get how butterflies can move a lock,” Matt grumped.
Oh man, I remember being that young. Alan grinned despite the chill. Matt was one sparkly, grumpy lump of, Mom can do anything, so if she can’t get this right, you need to explain it again!
And heck. It wasn’t like the kid was wrong. “Okay, this would give your science teachers fits, so listen up.”
Yep, definitely a spark of pure attention there. Wonder if Simon’s interested in setting up an elementary school to go with Hancock… drifting, too cold, focus. “There’s the physical world, where you can see a lot of what happens. Fires burn, rain comes down, earthquakes, the works. And then there’s the world in your mind, right? Where you dream stuff up, and hear words, and tell your body to move. Only sometimes it does, and sometimes it doesn’t – like when you’re really scared.” Or freezing – try shivering a little, might help. Not much, water sucks away heat twenty-five times faster than air, why do I have to remember that….
Right. Because no way was a kid his age going to admit being scared when he had to help Mommy. “Some guy I read said consciousness might be a quantum tunnel phenomenon… um, long words, yeah, let me think.” Sure, he’d read a lot of neat science news bit, but he was no physicist. And trying to fit together what he’d learned from Alma Torran magicians as his past self, and as who he was now – ow. Headache.
But I’ve got something. I think. “Okay, there’s the big world, which we see. There’s the smaller worlds we see and we guess are there, with microscopes and electrons and white-haired scientists going ‘Mwha-ha-hah!’ And… under that, tangled all through everything kind of like invisible spaghetti, there’s energy. That’s the rukh.”
Matt was silent for all of five seconds. “You said it was butterflies.”
“The butterflies, the birds – that’s the energy magicians can see,” Alan insisted. “The energy that’s moving around loose, maybe not connected to anyone right this second. That’s the easy stuff to tug on, if you get your mind to the right place. But there’s rukh in everything that exists. Even your handcuffs. Get that to move a little, the physical stuff will move right along with it.”