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Alice: Ernest Kinnie

Saturday, June 4, 2011
A tough, wild, super-intelligent, street-wise kid, born with The Gift---the ability to dance Space, Time, and the Shadow World. She watched her mother go sobbing out the door when she was 4. Ten foster homes later, she easily conned her way into UC Berkeley and has fun running circles around students and faculty. She never knew her father, but he left her a very large trust fund. Better than nothing.

Foul language comes easily to Alice when she is angry, upsetting the sanctimonious, or just for the Hell of it. This book is not for the overly sensitive or, as she so bluntly put it, “not for prissy hypocrites”.

I remember the first time I realized that I was different, that I had the Gift. I was maybe 2 ½ and stacking my blocks. I was using my little chubby hands, and also using my magic hands to help. My magic hands are invisible but I could use them to move things. The blocks would almost line up, but not quite. So I reached out with my invisible hands and pushed the blocks just right. My special, invisible hands weren’t as clumsy as my real ones and were stronger.

One day my mother noticed. She made a kind of little squeaky noise and looked back and forth between the blocks and me. And suddenly I knew. You see, I had been wondering why mommy never used her magic hands. And now I knew. She didn’t have any. She had such a shocked and scary face that I learned my second lesson that day. People are scared of my invisible hands, and if they catch me using them, they won’t like me anymore. So, after that I was careful not to get caught.

The first grade is when the fun started.

You would be amazed how clumsy the boys and girls I didn’t like were. Ugly Dorothy, who spit on me once, had a very bad habit of spilling her drink all over herself. Like, once I used my invisible hands to push a glass of orange juice just a little away from her mouth when she was about to take a sip. Down came all that bright yellow juice, all over her pretty green dress.
And the candy I got---wow. I’d sit next to a girl and use my special hands to feel around inside her lunch bag and zip what I wanted over to mine. I was a hyperactive kid, so I didn’t get fat.

In high school I learned all about linear time and Euclid’s three dimensions. The dumb teacher figured he had the whole universe figured out. Nope. Time and space twist and squirm all over the place. When he reached for his chalk, I moved it a little to the left. He hid his surprise the best he could. I give him credit for that. But the 4th time it happened he freaked. His simple minded universe fell apart, and his little brain just wasn’t up to the challenge.

A guy tried to hit on me once. Put his hand where he shouldn’t, and my invisible hands squeezed his balls---just a little. What a wonderful yowl he made.

And then there was that amazing time in church, when there was a miracle. The nice priest was raising the Eucharist before all of the sheep in the pews---I know, I’m supposed to call them a flock of lambs, but they looked like sheep to me. Anyway, he raised the white wafer high in the air. And guess what? The wafer slipped out of his fingers and drifted up into the air, with a little help from my invisible hands. I could extend them out quite a ways. Oh my, the sheep went crazy, and there were a lot of gasps and grunts and shouts and screams. I let it stay up there for a while---and then dropped it. The priest must not have been much of a baseball player. He missed the catch.

The talking heads were all over it, carefully and confidently explaining what happened with meaningless words like mass hysteria, group hypnosis, or whatever. Nobody suspected it was just a little 16-year year old girl, having a little fun.

And now, having reached my majority and come into my inheritance, I have been invited to join a group of people who also have the Gift. They will either kill me or become my friends, or so they say. Maybe I should run, or kill them first. Naw! They probably know much more then I do about how to dance with space and time, and will see it coming.

So! I play grateful and friendly, learn what they have to teach, and then decide what to do. Who knows, maybe they will be the family I lost when my mother left me, and I started the long trip in and out of all those many, many, rotten foster homes.

Never knew my father, but he left a lot of money in that trust. Better than nothing.

Good Reads Summary

5 stars