Telekinesis: standard (rank 1)
The man walked in, stripped to his underwear and laid prone on the massage table under Alma’s instructions. She walked over next to him and placed her hands on his back. There was a powerful and trained network of muscles he was fighter. She could also feel the remnants of scars as she ran her fingers over his skin.
In the table on which the man lay were drawers. Sarah pulled one out and inside was a bowl of ice water. She dipped her hands in and swished them around slowly. Then she withdrew and placed her palms on her patient’s back.
He flinched at the cold, and in the sudden contraction of the muscles, Alma could see where the biggest knots were, so there she moved her hands. Alma’s fingers, faintly outlined in a mystic glow that reflected the candlelight, traced around the man’s toned shoulders. She felt a large muscle knot two inches deep beneath skin tendon. The masseuse concentrated and pulled it apart. The man moaned with pleasure as the muscle uncurled.
Induced Sleep: standard (rank 1)
In the dim light, with soothing eastern music in his ears and Alma skillfully relieving all pressure in his flesh, the man soon drifted off to sleep. For a time, the only movement in the room was the rhythmic waving of the flames atop the candles. Alma rolled him onto his back. He snored, comfortably. He grinned.
In order to test the depth of his reverie, Alma dipped her hand in the cold water again and laid it on her patient’s bare chest. He was still, but his heart beat furiously.
Mind Control: standard (rank 1)
One hand covered the man’s forehand, and the other, fingertips to skin held the man’s heart. The mystic glow pushed in on his body and connected the space between her two hands: brain to heart. Secrets tumbled forth from his mouth. Still unconscious, the man began to talk.
“Anastasia,” he slurred, loudly and panicked. “I’m so sorry, I never meant to hurt you. I was stupid. I still love you.”
Alma sat with a pencil and paper. “Infidelity” she wrote by candlelight.
“Look, you can’t arrest me. No one can prove I took it.” Alma smiled. “Maybe the forty five grand just up and walked right out of here. Maybe, if you weren’t such a shitty manager, your money wouldn’t decide to just up and leave.”
“Stole from previous employer.” Alma smiled.
“I didn’t want to kill anyone.” His voice choked up. Tears rolled down. “Just give me the damn money.”
The confessions continued for a while until he was crying too much to continue. Alma placed a hand over his chest again and reached deep to sever the connection. He fell silent. Then she wiped the tears off the man’s face and woke him up.
Emotion Control: superior (rank 2)
The man sat up straight and sucked in air like he’d never had any before. “Oh God, did I fall asleep?”
“For a little while.” Alma smiled sweetly. “Now we go sit and talk. I have a series of questions to ask you about your experience here.”
“God, it was great,” he exclaimed, pinwheeling his arms to test out the soothed muscles. “I feel so much better.” The man slid off the table, got dressed, and followed Alma out. They ended up in a room with a couch for the man to lounge on and a large armchair for Alma. They smiled at each other.
The patient yawned and asked, “So what’d you want to ask me about?” Alma reached into her pocket and started to read off a list of the man’s secrets. In response to his incredulous stare, she shrugged and answered, “You talk in your sleep.”
“So, destroy that piece of paper,” he demanded.
The muscles in his face contracted violently. He glanced around the office. The mirrored walls reflected his own weirdly contorting face.
“I’ve seen that before,” said Alma, “What you’re trying to do is rage. I’ve disabled your ability to associate me or my service with any negative emotion.”
The words took purchase and the man fully understood what had happened, but he could manage no worse than a resigned contentment with his situation. “What do you want so no one else sees that piece of paper.”
“Five thousand dollars.”
“Five Thousand?” the man blurted incredulously. He tried to be outraged and ended up awed.
“Yes. If I don’t have five thousand dollars in the form of a check within the month, your information goes public. Especially your history of playing mercenary. How does fifteen years in jail sound to you?”
The man couldn’t help but feel that five thousand dollars wasn’t too bad of a price for the rest of his life.
A Stolen Ride
Vehicle: superior (rank 2)
In one day in the past, Alma encountered both her greatest triumph and worst mistake. Generally, she only accepted cash and liquid assets, but this prize was too big to give up. It was a motorcycle. The accents were a beautiful cherry red. There were so many modifications made, that this bike was one of a kind. And she had to have it. So instead of charging as she normally did, she took the bike as payment. She was almost caught almost.
It was useful, because it allowed Alma to stack her appointments less than forty-five minutes apart, all around Khazan. She rode at blinding speed toward another parlor and another victim on the other side of the city. The bike made automatic course corrections with sensors in the front end. It swerved around cars and pedestrians. It came to a stop, Alma dismounted and walked into the parlor for another appointment.