Chapter 4.12 – Holy Potato!

Disclaimer: violence and badly-drawn blood/bruises. A trashy chapter by all definitions.

Wasn’t it amazing what plants could do? Cleanse the air, filter out toxins, get you utterly wasted. Or, at least, wasted enough.

In his dark, dingy room which was peppered with trash, discarded toys and mounds of evidence that his life was one huge joke, Wyatt stared down at the man he’d accidentally turned into a garden ornament and, thanks to his trusty plants, he felt… okay.

With his emotions in check and his brain whirring with all the crazy stuff it thought it could do thanks to aforementioned plants, Wyatt cracked his knuckles and focused on Omar’s painted porcelain face, as he prepared himself to cast.

Describing the absorption of magic to someone who couldn’t use it, or even to his peers who apparently could, was impossible. It was like taking a huge breath of fresh air and realising that you’d been holding your breath for your whole life. It was light, but it was heavy.

He’d watched his peers learning magic with confusion as many of them struggled with it or against it. He’d sympathised with their efforts to draw enough power, to hold on to it, or to know what to do with it, but Wyatt had never really understood why they found it so hard. Even as small boy, he’d been able to bend water to his will. He’d come to learn that the ease of which he could do it was unusual, and risky, but he’d always accepted it for what it was and tried not to be a dick about it.

Most of the time.

He didn’t see it as some awesomely amazing ability, to be honest. At best, it was just there, and at worst, it sucked. He didn’t feel special, wasn’t made to feel special, he just felt like something was wrong with him. A feeling that had only been amplified ten-fold since he’d burned his mum to cinders…

Every time his thoughts were remotely watery he’d get a surge. If he got upset, he’d usually cause a storm. And if he tried to bottle it up, he evidently exploded and either killed people he loved, or turned people who were trying to smash his face in into objects.

Yeah. Totally enviable, that.

He was sick of the envy – and the fear – from his peers. He couldn’t change the way he was; the energy just seemed to love him, or hate him, depending on your perspective. Magic surged through him at his slightest command, like water to a sponge, filling him up until he was totally drenched; soaked with light, saturated with power.

Damn it, too many ‘wet’ thoughts and he was teetering on the brink of overcharge. His instinct was to discharge it, as he dutifully done daily since ‘the event’. But instead he toyed it in his fist for a while; the squelchy warmness of the indefinable light straining against his grasp, desperate to do something worthwhile.

He turned his attention to Omar, swished his hand through the river of the air around him, drawing it into a whirlpool that centred on the pink rabbit. He imagined cracking open the shell, unfurling the life within.

And then he simply let go.

The rabbit glowed an eerie green and appeared to get a bit bigger, for a second, before reverting to form.

Maybe Omar liked being a bunny, Wyatt thought with a hint of a grin, imaging the huge man squashed inside the tiny creature— okay, woah, no that was conjuring up all sorts of warped images.

Focus, Wy. Focus.

He drew the energy in a slightly different curve for his next attempt, more of a wave formation than a whirlpool, if that made any sense whatsoever. This made the whole room shimmer and sway, all the objects colliding like skittles. He would attempt to blend Omar into his surroundings, rather than break him out of his shell.

See? Explaining this made literally no sense.

With the release of this groovy wave, Wyatt watched in amazement as the rabbit began to grow, blurring at the edges as it morphed and stretched and began to change into something else.

It was definitely getting taller… had he done it?

He had! He’d turned Omar from a ceramic bunny…

…into a plastic one.

Wyatt was both frustrated and mortified. He dropped to his knees in the soft garbage and cradled his head in hands. How was he getting this so damn wrong?

And why a bloody bunny? Was this, like, Wyatt’s undiscovered spiritual animal or something? He’d always thought he had more of an affinity with dogs, but he could totally see how he could relate to a rabbit.

Wyatt peeped through his fingers as the plastic bunny seemed to be undergoing another transformation. He waited with bated breath, hoping it wasn’t going to turn into another pink bunny, made of metal or fabric or something weird, like latex…

“Uh… hi,” Wyatt said sheepishly, as Omar materialised in front of him. “Uh… h-how are you doing, Omar?”

After establishing that he did not have a fluffy tail any longer, Omar stared at the wall past Wyatt, unblinking.

Wyatt let out the breath he’d been holding and inched forwards, feeling he owed the guy an explanation. How did it feel to be turned into an inanimate object? Was it like that time he’d let that guy he’d just met handcuff him to the bed without asking if he had a key?

“Dude, you, uh, had me scared there. You, uh, passed out in the bar so I thought I’d… uh…”

“You thought you’d what?” Omar asked, in a broken growl. “Take me to what I presume – from the state of it – is your bedroom?” He took a shaky step towards Wyatt. “You’d better have a good reason for stripping me to my underwear.”

Wyatt fleetingly glanced down at Omar’s sole garment, hugely relieved that it was there. But did he have a good reason? Not one that he could think of. Other than the truth, but he wasn’t sure how that would land.

There was a rule in the coven that a witch should only ever out themselves if it was essential – danger to life, for the greater good, marrying a mortal etc. Wyatt wasn’t sure this situation fit into any of those categories.

“I’m waiting,” Omar snarled.

Wyatt sucked in a breath. “OK. See, I’m a witch and when you gunned for me back in the bar there, I lost control of my magic and accidentally turned you into a rabbit.”

Wyatt could hear his heart pounding in his ears as Omar mulled this over.

“You’re high, aren’t you?”

“Uh… no, not really. See, I… I managed to turn you back,” Wyatt backed away and babbled on as Omar seemed to grow larger and angrier with every spittle-laced, seething breath. “B-but I’m not sure how. And I’m not sure how I turned you into an object, I’ve not turned a person into a thing before, so, it’s all, like, new territory to me…  your clothes are probably still floating in the ether. Or disintegrated,” he backed into the wall. “Or back in the bar. Or inside you, who knows?”

“Inside me?” Omar hissed. “You’ve been putting things inside me?”

“Fuck. No,” Wyatt stated firmly. “I haven’t.”

“Didn’t expect me to come to so soon, huh?” Omar scoffed. “Did that scupper your perverted little plan?”

Wyatt was aware that Omar wasn’t buying a word he said. Not that he could blame him. The man had come to in a stranger’s bedroom, undressed and with no memory of getting there. It didn’t take a mind-reader to know what Omar was thinking. “Omar, look, I know what this looks like…”

“It looks like you’ve drugged me, stripped me to… what? Humiliate me? Is Kaylynn in on this? Have you two not hurt me enough?!”

The angry man mountain approached, spun Wyatt like he was weightless, and pinned him against the wall with the strength in one hand.

Omar’s breath was hot on Wyatt’s cheek, his solid body firm against his back. It would have been kind of hot if Wyatt wasn’t literally crapping his pants and wondering if he was gonna die. He focused on a crack in the plaster two inches in front of his face and discharged what residual energy he had into the ground to avoid any more magical bloopers.

Omar grabbed the back of his head, tightening his fist in Wyatt’s hair and craning him back until he could see the ceiling.

“You clumsy fool,” Omar muttered into Wyatt’s ear, and slammed the witch’s face against the wall.

Melinda had been given a smooth little pebble and a strict set of instructions. The pebble would allow them to transportalate – a form of magical teleportation – to the location that whoever was holding it was thinking of. It was not unlimited, but Moon had charged it thrice; one to get there, one to get back and one just in case they landed in the ocean, which apparently wasn’t uncommon for first-time transportalatees.

April had slid the pebble into her pocket and tried to picture her apartment, while Melinda held her hands and tried not to think of landing on the back of a blue whale.

The cottage around them began to disappear along with all of Melinda’s bearings. She gripped April’s hands firmly as they too became nothing. That horrible, sinking feeling that life was about to end washed over her briefly, before she felt solid ground beneath her feet and sensed the unending void close in around her in the form of four walls.

Through her eyelids she could see a hazy pink light, and she could smell… flipping bell, what was that smell?!

“Welcome to my room, Mel,” April said shyly, as Melinda tried not to gag. Everywhere she looked in the faded pink bedroom there was stinking trash, discarded note paper and what looked like remnants of experiments on take-away boxes.

On the walls were a selection of handicrafts made from food packaging – some of it still had traces of food clinging to it. The sole window was covered in so much dirt that it looked like night time out there. April’s shoes were shoved under a dresser and full of mouse droppings. The rug was soiled and squelched under Melinda’s boots – she did not want to know what that green stain was on the carpet. The only part of the room that seemed clean and tidy was the bed. Although, on closer inspection, the sheets had that same damp smell that April had, hinting that they’d probably been put back on the bed when they were still wet.

It was revolting.

“What do you think?” April asked sheepishly. “Do you like my decorations? I made them myself!”

Melinda was, in all honesty, completely appalled. She’d known when she’d volunteered to clean that April wasn’t a particularly tidy person, but she hadn’t expected to be plucking mushrooms from the curtains while trying not to puke.

She rolled her criticism around her tongue, wondering how best to sugar-coat it, when she became distinctly aware of noises coming from an adjacent room.

“April? What is that noise?”

April coyly swayed, unable to meet Melinda’s eye. “Sounds like Wyatt has, um…” she fiddled with her jeans and whispered, “…company.”

“Company?” Melinda repeated. “As in… um, bedroom company? Are you sure? It sounds more like a fight.”

April looked away which told Melinda all she needed to know. “Shall we put on some music?” she asked brightly. “We can play it as loud as we like! Isn’t that great?”

Melinda didn’t know what to do with herself. She was very glad that April still had the pebble otherwise she’d have inadvertently transportalated herself into a hole in the ground.

“Oh! There we go!” April exclaimed as the banging abruptly ended. “So, um… what shall we listen to first—?”

“If I ever see you again, punk, I’ll kill you. You understand?”

Wyatt slid down the wall until he was a lump on the floor, leaving streaks of blood and broken pieces of plaster in his wake. He dabbed at his very tender nose, his fingers coming away sticky with blood and his head spinning. Omar cussed behind him, kicking piles of dirty laundry in his frustration.

“Where are my clothes?!” he growled, to which Wyatt could only shrug.

He winced as Omar’s shadow loomed over him again, but breathed a huge sigh of relief when the beast of a man passed, mumbling to himself about ‘no good, wasted losers’ and wondering aloud if there was a robe in the bathroom he could steal so he wouldn’t have to get a taxi home in just his boxers.

Oh man, Wyatt was so relieved that April had decided to stay at Mel’s today. At least, he hoped she had as the sun had come up and he hadn’t yet heard her chirpy morning greeting.

Hopefully he had time to fix his face before she got back.

The big man, on a quest for his clothing or a bathrobe, had opened the first door he’d located. But he hadn’t found the bathroom. Wyatt’s heart stopped the second Omar’s heavy footsteps did; when April’s creaky bedroom door opened.

“What the— who are you?” Omar shouted. “What is this? Geez, this place is absolutely disgusting, I don’t even want to know what kind of freak show this is. I’m out of here.”

Wyatt hauled himself up on the wall, waiting for his head to catch up and for Omar to leave. He wasn’t sure how long April had been home, or what she had heard, but he knew that she’d be terrified having a half-naked man appear in her room. He heard Omar start to walk off and then heard him pause in his steps. His voice was suddenly softer, “I know you two from somewhere.”

Two? Shit!

Both girls stayed silent as Omar stepped closer, thinking out loud.

“It was recent, back in… March? Yeah. At that party up at the Moss Mansion. You were both there; I’m sure of it. I ran the events for that; that was one was a real job. It was the middle of the kale crisis, and Jim had to pull out from performing at the last minute because his liver packed in. I called Sandy to explain. She was, to put it mildly, annoyed. So, I went along with the team to apologise to her in person and… and I saw you there, didn’t I?” he said to Melinda. “You were with another girl, getting patted down at the entrance. And you,” he said, turning back to April. “You were definitely there. Wouldn’t be much of a party without the birthday girl—!”

For a moment after Omar had faceplanted into a pizza box the room was completely silent. Melinda, who was blushing as much as a vampire could and shaking like a leaf, was the first to find her voice.

“Wyatt,” she hissed through her teeth, her eyes fixated on the unconscious, half-naked man at her feet. “What have you done?!”

Wyatt dropped the half-full vodka bottle he was still holding as his adrenaline rush subsided to be replaced with that ‘oh shit’ feeling he seemed to know so well lately. “Uh… I panicked.”

“Panicked?” Melinda repeated, an octave higher than her usual pitch, bordering on the brink of only being heard by dogs. She finally tore her gaze away from Omar long enough to look at Wyatt’s face. “Holy potato!”

Between Melinda’s outburst, expression and the way she gripped April’s hand, and April retreating to her happy place, he didn’t need a mirror to know how he looked.

“What happened to you?” Melinda gasped, instinctively moving closer but stopping when her shoe brushed Omar’s bald and bruised head. “Did he do this to you? Who is this man? Wyatt, what’s going on?!”

Wyatt sighed, which physically hurt. “I slept with his wife and turned him into a garden ornament, and he got kind of pissy with me, go figure.”

“What on earth did you do that for?!” Melinda cried out, at the same time April asked, “You used magic?”

“Is there a mortal way to turn someone into an ornament?” Wyatt joked. “Yeah, I used magic, but that,” he gestured at the floor, “was pure adrenaline. Let’s get out of here. Go pack a bag, Apes; we’ll go stay at Hoggy’s—”

April turned towards her bedroom, but Melinda jerked her back. “No! You can’t just leave him here!” Melinda squeaked. “We can’t leave him here, Wyatt! He knows who we are! He knows we were here! Running away doesn’t solve anything! We can’t keep running!”

Wyatt winced as Melinda’s voice drilled through his throbbing head and Omar began to stir.

“Do you have a better idea?”

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5 thoughts on “Chapter 4.12 – Holy Potato!

  1. A better idea that doesn’t involve murder?

    Why do disasters always occur when Wyatt is around?
    Someone needs an answer here. A really good answer 🤔


    1. Out of the whole cast, these three are among the least likely to suggest murder as an option, so you can be fairly certain that that won’t be a suggestion. An accidental outcome, maybe…

      “Why do disasters always occur when Wyatt is around?”
      Because he understands very much less than he thinks he does. Is that a good answer? If not, a good answer may be right around the corner… or a few corners, depending on how wordy the next few chapters get. Got a few loose threads to bring together. 😉


      1. It is a rather comprehensive answer. As you write, Wyatt has always been able to use his magic without any hassle and when things come so easily to one and you have a mother who removes all stones on your route, it is a sure recipe for developing a carefree self -satisfied personality disturbance. Why should he make an effort with anything at all? 🙄
        Although Wyatt may be learning that carelessness may end up in a catastrophe, I fear his abilities are quite limited right now.

        NB. Now that a murder is excluded, I look forward to what answers are hiding behind the next corners. (Maybe Seth? 😅 )


  2. Should have left omar as a bunny. Cuter. 🤣 then again there’s a lot of should’ves so imma leave it at that.

    Idk what you’re on about I found myself admiring the bruises. Let’s hope others read this in context cuz i probably sound crazy.

    When they heard the scuffle and April’s first thought is that Wyatt has bedroom company. Oh Wyatt. 😭

    All in all though, Wyatt’s openness in communication is admirable. Telling Apes n Mel the honest truth about how everything happened. Really like that about him.


    1. That first bunny as creepy as hell. “there’s a lot of should’ves” Plot of AE: ‘we should have done sensible thing, but we did stupid thing instead, so let’s fix it by doing another stupid thing‘. I do love me some chaos. 😁

      I’m happy that you like my bruises.

      …Oh, Wyatt. Things sure do get blurry when the room is spinning.


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