The Curiously Stunted, Incomprehensibly Disjointed, Perfectly Inadequate Adventures of Nicholas Cornelius Holloway – Episode 28

The teacher concluded, “Those early scientists – Newton, Einstein, Hawking – What they didn’t understand was that natural phenomena are most stable when first discovered and then deteriorate as our understanding of them deepens.”

The bell rang.

“You have your assignment. See you tomorrow,” she said to a room already in motion.

The children bounded in slow loping arcs toward the door, tapping their books like balloons to keep them floating in front of them. Their laughter meandered in the syrupy air like whale speech as they joyfully and haphazardly careened out into the sunlit afternoon.

The Curiously Stunted, Incomprehensibly Disjointed, Perfectly Inadequate Adventures of Nicholas Cornelius Holloway – Episode 27

Murray was the seventh son of a seventh son. Eugene had been born under a full moon on a winter solstice. A vulture had deposited a live fish on his doorstep the morning of Archibald’s thirteenth birthday.

Eustice, on the other hand, could levitate a plump goose nearly five inches straight up. He could conjure edible chocolates. He could teleport small rocks and lethargic beetles medium distances, make time appear to pass slightly slower or a touch more quickly for several minutes consecutively, and he was working on a method to split sunlight and distill it into a potable fluid.

But there was nothing special about the circumstances of Eustice’s birth. You can have three guesses as to who was passed over by the admissions committee, and the first two guesses don’t count.