"I know what you are, Shewayne Walker." I say. "Come with me."
Shewayne seems to have some serious trust issues. Agreed, I don’t really look like ‘Mr. Nice Guy’, but I am! Once you get to know me, that is. But if you happen to get on my bad side…just watch out.
“What do you want?” Shewayne says.
“I have been sent here to take you to a school for special people, like you and me.” I say.
“What do you mean, special?” She says.
I hesitate. Storm hadn’t told me what this girl’s power was, just that I should bring her to the academy as soon as I could.
“Do you mean to say that you have never done anything…out of the ordinary?” I say slowly.
“I…” The girl hesitates. Aha! So she was special, for better or for worse.
“He deserved it.” Shewayne says suddenly. “He deserved it completely. He had it coming all along.”
“I’m sure he did. Now come along.” I say, having no idea what she is talking about.
“Wait! Show me yours.” She says.
“I’m sorry? My…what?” I say, confused.
“You know, your thing.”
“Yeah, your special thing.”
“Oh!” I say. “Oh, I’m really special. I’ve got powers beyond belief, believe me. I’ll show you as soon as we get there.”
“No. Show me now.” She insists.
I sigh. “All right.” I take her to a corner of the ground, blocked by a pillar, out of sight of everyone. She seems to be ready to take me on if I happen to launch an attack, but I assure her that I mean no harm. And then, I open the portal.
Shewayne would have screamed had I not clamped my hand over her mouth. The bright light coming out of the portal, which could only be seen by mutants, shocked everyone the first time they saw it.
“Come on. Let’s go.” I guide her into the portal. I know Storm will be mad with me for wasting all this time, but there seems to be no other way to convince the girl. Besides, I like showing off my powers.
We go in, disappearing from the real world and into my fantasy portal. The ‘Light’ Portal. I have brought very few people in here. Storm, when she’d wanted to see my power. Beast, because he’d been very curious about it. Then they would curse me for bringing them in there because it wasted their time.
Here’s the thing about the ‘Light’ Portal. It is your dream, everything you ever wanted in the world, your wildest fantasy- all coming true. It is the happiest place in the world to be. Only one problem, though. Time does not have the same meaning in here. A few seconds in the ‘Light’ Portal amounts to a day in the real world.
We have been in here for half a minute. Two days in the real world, I guess. Shewayne is looking around, awestruck. They never want to go back once they come here. But I was always there to make sure they did.
I drag her out of the portal, and we land back into the playground, like two overgrown kids wrestling.
“Convinced?” I ask her.
She nods, speechless.
“Great. Then let’s go.”
“What’s your name?” Shewayne asks me on the way to the academy.
“Riley. Just that. No surname.” I tell her.
When we get to the gate, we find Storm waiting there for us.
She looks at me sternly.
“What? I got her here, didn’t I?” I protest.
“You sure took your sweet time.”
“Well, she wanted to see.”
“Welcome, Shewayne.” Storm says. We follow her inside.
“How does everyone know my name?” Shewayne mutters.
“Oh, we know a lot more about you than just your name. More than you would believe. We have another illusionist here as well. A troublemaker. But you won’t be much trouble, I guess.” She smiles at Shewayne.
“Guess not.” Shewayne mumbles meekly.
“So is everything normal around here?” I ask Storm.
“Is it ever normal around here, Riley? No. But today has been especially hectic. We have this girl, Freya. She’s…different. Powerful, like you. Only she can’t control her emotions.”
“Oh?” Powerful like me, eh? We’d see about that. My ‘Dark’ Portal would make even the strongest of them cry for help. I had used that Portal only twice, once when I had no idea about my powers. It was a mistake…but it no longer mattered.
The Dark Portal is the opposite of the Light Portal. It contains all of your worst nightmares…and time also has a different meaning in there. A year in there is a few days in the real world. So if I happen to send someone in there for even a second, chances are that they won’t come back sane. The only way to control this is to go in there myself. I did that with Storm, just to show her, although I hate to go in there. We were in there for a couple of seconds when Storm started looking scared and asked to bring us back. I didn’t blame her. The Dark Portal is spooky. I barely know my own power.
Of course, I wasn’t going to use it on anyone. I was supposed to be the responsible one, having been here longer than most, although I rarely lived up to that reputation.
I look at Shewayne. The girl is still dazed after visiting the Light Portal. I expect her to start asking me to take her back there, but she seems to have extreme restraint. She certainly didn’t look like a troublemaker to me. Just a scared little paranoid girl.