When Renja picked up the exquisite hand-crafted wood-handled fountain pen, the numerology witch from Finnland expected to feel something special. Instead, nothing happened. She was just holding a very nice pen. “Cass,” she said, eyeing her booty-blessed coven-sister. “You’re not pulling my leg about this being a magic item, are you?”
“You really think I would give you a lemon for your birthday, Ren?“ She said, puffing at a fluffy chunk of her frizzy, red-tinged hair. “You have no idea how many hours I poured into those glyphs, sister.”
“Then why is nothing happening? It isn’t even writing,” she pouted as the nib scratched at the first page of her brand new notebook like a cat at the door asking to come in.
“Ren,“ Cass said, putting a hand on the other witch’s wrist. Her sepia complexion was a striking contrast in warmth to Renja’s creamy skin tone. Her new mentee was even cold to the touch. “Not to doubt you or anything but, have you ever used a fountain pen before?”
“Of course!” The Nordic witch blustered, pulling away. Then, she tried to write something again, grumbled when nothing happened and handed the pen to Cass. “You’re sure you’re not just fucking with me?”
“I’m not, honestly. You need to put ink into these things before they work. Here, let me show you…” Cass twisted the case apart, revealing a metal chamber within. She gestured towards her workbench, and a vial of dark red liquid sailed into her open hand. The witch pulled the stopper out and tipped the glass chamber to the side until the fluid trickled down into the pen. As she did, the glyphs began to grow with a pink light.
“See what I mean?” she asked, putting the pen back together. “Now try.”
Renja gasped at the vibrations within her spirit when she took the pen back. Her awareness fuzzed out a little when she tried to focus on the magic imbued into the tool. A compulsion to do math drove her hand to the page. The pen left behind jagged red slashes making it appear that the page was bleeding. The numerologist, however, was unperturbed. She was only aware of being able to taste numbers and hear equations.
Her mind pivoted after a moment, turning from mundane trigonometry to the math of the stars. As she wrote the ancient formulas that had been part of her consciousness since before she could speak, all around her, the room darkened into a void before tiny lights winked into existence. Just above her, a stunningly real simulacrum of the Solar System was already in motion.
“This is… wow…”
Cass flashed her a smile. “Great first birthday abroad, right?”