Wind Town 3.0

            When Matt was about 7 years old, the circus came to town. As soon as they heard about the lion and the elephants, Matt and Sarah had begged to go. After a few days of incessant pleading, Mom and Dad took them, and there were clowns, trapeze artists, and people who rode horses standing up.
            Sarah was enthralled by the man who juggled clubs and fire. She spent weeks in the orchard, throwing apples in the air and then dodging them with a scream when she couldn’t catch them. Matt had laughed and asked when she was going to try fire. (Mom caught them before they’d done more than light the match, and, of course, Matt got in trouble.)
            But even after all that, the one Matt remembered best was the magician.
            He’d stood on a platform in a fancy suit, and whenever he gestured, something appeared or disappeared. He made a live dove materialize under a cloth, called a bouquet of flowers to his hand, and made his assistant disappear from the box onstage. Everything he did made something dramatic happen that Matt could see immediately.
            Maybe, that’s why he hadn’t expected their training to be so boring.
            “Matthew, are you listening?” his mother said sharply.
            Matt jerked upright.
            “Yes.”
            “Uh-huh,” She regarded him with folded arms and narrowed eyes. “What did I just say?”
            “That the-” Sarah started faithfully but stopped abruptly when their mother held up a hand. Matt swallowed.
            “You were talking about how farmers used to make offerings to the wind to get good crops,” he said uncertainly.
            “A minute ago, yes,” she said, giving him a stern look. “Matt, you need to listen-”
            “But I thought we were going to learn what to do, not what people used to do!” he protested.


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