The First Magi


And once again, this time in English.

Enjoy, if you like.

[CN racism, moderate police violence]

 

“Hey Turkish girl! How were your holidays, Turkish girl? „

„Fine, I’m not Turkish, and even if I were, you’d be a racist ass and shut up Thomas!“

„I’ll tell you what you are, you are a …“

Even if Thomas wouldn’t say it anymore because Mr. Bartkowiak had come in, Munira knew exactly what she was to Thomas. Nevertheless, she was very glad that he hadn’t said it. Not much satisfaction, actually almost none, but all she could get for the time being. Of course, Mr. Bartkowiak just pretended that he hadn’t heard anything of the sentence he had interrupted. The teachers here all did that. They knew that they wouldn’t get anything else done if they tried to stop every racist shitty saying in school and try to prevent it for the future through appropriate educational measures. It was just like that, and everyone knew it. Some liked it, some didn’t care, and others at least accepted it.

„Julia, what’s your answer to 4b?“ she quietly asked her neighbor, while Mr. Bartkowiak was still putting his briefcase on the table, looking at his students like a general inspecting his legions before the battle. He opened the briefcase’s locks and began slamming documents on his desk. „I got 4x² + c, but I thought the question was weird?“

Julia shrugged her shoulders and pushed her pad over, but Munira couldn’t find the question in time. There was a knock on the door of the classroom, which was unusual enough in itself, because Mr. Bartkowiak was already there, and students who were late didn’t knock, they just snuck in unobtrusively. Like most of the students, Mr. Bartkowiak looked at the door, confused.

„Yes?“ he shouted gruffly. The door opened and the school principal Mrs. Jespersen came in. She had clearly been careful not to open the door too wide and to close it immediately behind her, but Munira had seen glimpses behind it that she had been afraid of for years and which sometimes starred in her nightmares: dark blue Uniforms, radios on shoulders, thick black belts, black combat boots.

„Munira, can … Can you come out with me, please?“ Mrs. Jespersen asked.

The principal was speaking at an unusually quiet level, and her voice was trembling a little. She wasn’t looking at Munira, and her fingers were fiddling with a button on her cardigan.

Munira’s neck tightened at the sight, she felt tears welling up in her eyes and found it almost silly how at that moment she worried more about crying in front of the whole class than about what was waiting for her behind the door in the hallway.

„No,“ she replied. „No, I can’t. I … I don’t want to.“

She saw from Julia’s horrified, pitying expression that she had now understood what was happening, unlike Mr. Bartkowiak, who just stared at Munira indignantly, perhaps roughly the way he should have looked at Thomas when he came in.

„Munira, you will do as you’re told ri …“ He fell silent on a gesture by the director, who had finally found the courage to look up from the floor and now looked Munira straight in the eyes.

„Please,“ said Mrs. Jespersen. „Just come with me. I need to talk to you.“

Munira almost laughed out loud with contempt for the school principal, who even now couldn’t bring herself to say clearly what was going on.

„What did the Turkish girl do?“ Thomas asked, quietly enough that Mr. Bartkowiak and Mrs. Jespersen could pretend they hadn’t heard.

„I’ll give you a Turkish girl right away, shut up!“ someone hissed back.

„Hürrem!“ warned Mr. Bartkowiak. Of course he rebuked her.

„Munira, come with me please-„

„No!“ Julia shouted now. „You can’t do that!“

Munira put a hand on her arm.

„Let it be.“

„But …“ Julia tried to contradict weakly, but obviously relieved to be allowed to stand back and stop fighting the authorities.

Munira folded her book and shoved it into her backpack. She didn’t want to be dragged out of here screaming and ending up on Twitter as a video that people shared with #NieWiederCDU or something.

„Just leave your stuff here,“ Mrs. Jespersen said with a nervous look at the door.

„I’ll be quick,“ Munira said, as calmly as she could. She hastily packed all her things, tossed the backpack over one shoulder, took a deep breath and followed the school principal out into the hall.

The four federal police officers waiting there weren’t as nervous as the director, but three of them at least showed some awareness of the absurdity of the situation. Not so the fourth, a tall woman with hard blue eyes and a long, light brown braid that fell almost to the waist under her beret. ‚SCHAPER‘ was on her nameplate. She walked up to Munira as soon as the classroom door closed, grabbed her arm and reached for a pouch on her belt with her other hand. Her mouth was a fine, thin line.

„Ouch!“ Munira shouted, more frightened than hurt, but the grip of the federal policewoman was really very hard.

„Is this really …?“ asked Mrs. Jespersen quietly.

„Let go of her, Pat,“ said one of the other three.

His name tag read ‚BANNERS‘. Schaper snorted in frustration and let go of Munira.

„If she runs away, you’ll catch her again,“ she grumbled.

„Please come with me,“ said Banners to Munira, without reacting to Schaper. At least he looked Munira in the eye, and the corners of his mouth were bent down a little. The four weren’t quite as bad as the ones in Munira’s nightmares. ‚At least I got that going for me‘, Munira thought, and almost had to laugh.

„You are obliged to leave the country,“ Banners explained to her. „The BAMF has informed you that your asylum application has been rejected and that you therefore -„

„Olaf, spare us the crap, she doesn’t understand you anyway,“ said Schaper.

„Of course I understand the crap,“ Munira contradicted. „But he can still save it.“

Banners then looked down at his boots briefly. „We have been instructed to enforce your obligation to leave the country. Please come with us.“

„What if I don’t?“ Asked Munira, and wiped the tears from her face with her sleeve together with some snot that ran out of her nose when her forearm pressed against it. She didn’t care.

„If you don’t come with us voluntarily, we’ll have to lead you to the vehicle,“ replied Banners.

He looked at her again now, but she didn’t want to know what was happening on his face. Munira nodded with closed eyes.

„Okay. I hope you can’t sleep at night, you assholes.“

„Pat, if you touch her again, I’ll report you to the boss, I swear I will,“ she heard Banners say, and behind her the policewoman groaned in annoyance.

One of the other two whispered something to her colleague.

„I’ll come with you,“ Munira muttered.

„Give me the backpack,“ said Schaper from behind her.

„Is that really …?“ Mrs. Jespersen asked again. Nobody paid any attention to her.

Munira had her backpack removed and trotted out of the school between the four police officers.

„What the hell is …?“ one of them mumbled, and Munira peered past the broad uniformed back in front of her.

There was an empty bus with an open door, the driver of which was on the steering wheel and seemed to be asleep – or unconscious? – , and a strange figure in a long dark blue velvet coat with a wide-brimmed red hat with something tucked into the ribbon was leaning against the door with folded arms. The thing in their hat looked like an old yellowed scroll from here.

All four federal police officers had stopped and were just as confused and at a loss as Munira herself. The silly figure raised their head, and for a moment Munira had the impression that they were winking at her.

„Munira Chahuán?“ asked the figure in a warm, friendly voice. „It’s nice to-„

„What kind of clown is that?“ Schaper asked. „Olaf, do you want to do anything, or have you finally decided to fully immerse yourself into your inner wimp?“

The figure’s striking red lips – were they wearing lipstick? But they also had a beard, albeit a threadbare one. But now that they spread her arms, Munira also clearly saw a bulge of breasts under the coat.

„You should learn not to simply assume people’s pronouns and gender,“ said the disguised person in front of the bus. „It’s inconsiderate and trans-hostile.“

„Shit, a pomo,“ snorted Schaper.

„Shut up, Pat,“ hissed Banners.

Louder, towards the person in the blue coat, he asked: „Who are you and what happened here? Did you do that?“

The figure nodded. „Depending on what you mean, but yes, mostly yes.“

Munira heard the scraping noise and her eyes flicked to Schaper. The federal police officer had drawn her gun and pointed it at the stranger.

„Pat, are you crazy?“ asked Banners.

„The guy thwarted a deportation and attacked the driver,“ replied his colleague. „Maybe he even killed him. And he’s obviously mentally ill. I have no idea how dangerous he is, but I’d rather find out that way than any other way.“

The person in the wide hat raised an index finger of her left hand so that Munira could see the golden varnish on the nail glistening in the sun.

„You can misgender me one more time, but then it’s really over.“

„Now he’s threatening us,“ growled Schaper.

„Pat, we don’t have to escalate this now,“ Banners answered her.

„Last time,“ said the person in front of the bus, still very friendly and more amused than angry.

„Who are you?“ asked Banners. „And what happened here?“

„I’m one of the First Magi,“ replied the person. „And you will hear from us more often in the future.“

Schaper hissed: „You see??“

The person with the hat continued, „And your colleague is quite right. I completely thwarted your beautiful deportation, and at least in a technically legal sense, I also attacked your driver. At least I think so. As far as I know, there is still no case law on exactly such a situation. Anyway, it gets even worse: I’m going to thwart another deportation. While I’m here anyway, and such. „

„Yeah, I bet that’s what you think, you wanker,“ growled Schaper.

„I warned you!“ The person took a step forward – or at least tried to – and fell flat on their face. Laughing, they got up again, wiped their face with the back of their hand and brushed the dust from their coat.

„I’m sorry. I’m … still practicing. I’m not used to it.“

And then … something happened to time. In a way that hurt Munira’s head, the figure in the blue coat was moving very, very slowly, as if through water, towards the federal policewoman with the gun, but it was also so incredibly fast that their movement blurred in front of her eyes, melting and flowing into a single spectral state of coincid…

Munira pressed her eyelids together so as not to have to endure the nauseating sight any longer. When she opened them again, the four police people were slumped motionless and (hopefully?) unconscious on the floor around her and the strange figure.

The figure held Banner’s pistol between stiltedly spread fingers, as one might hold a strange insect, and peered curiously down the barrel.

„Careful,“ murmured Munira, who had absolutely no idea of an appropriate reaction to the circumstances and therefore held on to the one point that seemed reasonably certain: looking into the barrel of a loaded gun was not a good idea. „That is the dangerous end!“

The person laughed out loud.

„Right,“ they admitted, and lowered the gun. „Dependent on your relative threshold for ‘dangerous’, but I’ll admit I was being a bad role model for the children.“

„What are you doing here?“ Munira asked, while she absently picked up her backpack from the floor and held it by the handle. Somehow she just couldn’t find the energy to toss it over her shoulder. „What kind of weird dude are you?“

„Tsk, tsk, tsk!“ The figure waved their gold-lacquered index finger in front of Munira’s face. „You heard what I explained to the unfriendly government executive. Don’t make the same mistakes as them, you’ve seen where they end up! And I don’t mean sleeping peacefully on the floor, but in a uniform with a gun, threatening children in order to force them out of their familiar environment.“

„She didn’t threaten me with it at all.“

„Not directly.“ The person made a waving hand gesture. „Doesn’t matter now. I’m here to help. We decided that this world really needs a little more magical realism. And we’re determined to bring it on right away.“

„‚We‘?“ asked Munira, whose head still hurt a bit and whose brain still seemed to be rotating a bit too fast.

„The First Magi,“ replied the figure. „We want to do something against …“ They gestured vaguely around her to the world, „… this whole mess here, and we don’t know exactly what, but … like I said, we’re wildly determined. Are you coming with me? We’ll need a couple of Second Magi sooner or later. “ The person held out a hand and Munira noticed that their fingernails were all shining different colors.

She hesitated only a moment before taking her hand.

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