"Mommy, I'm the only one in the world allowed to have magic! Make Conrad stop saying his magic is powerfuller!" That's my firstborn the self-styled magus talking. And talking and talking, for miles.
Hands gripping the steering wheel, I remember with mortification how my sister and I subjected our parents to arguments this goofy when we were little, on ten hour drives from DC to Rochester. It's a wonder anyone lives to adulthood.
"No!" protests my two-year-old, when his brother finally pauses for breath. "My magic pow'ful! My magic yellow!"
"Yellow?" I ask. "Why yellow?"
"Because," Gareth says, "my magic is pink." I'm not sure why that would make Conrad's magic yellow, but okay, Gareth sounds like this is really obvious to him, so why not?
Now that the boys' magics are different colors, the wizard wars in the back seat settle into a truce. Gareth declares that he has resumed his kitty form. Conrad chimes in cheerfully about taking owl form. If I had a handy recording of that ancient ballad The Twa Magicians, I'd queue it up on the car stereo now.
Tomorrow they'll argue this same issue again. I will point out that everyone has magic. My husband, who these days identifies as an atheist, will say that everyone is equally likely to have magic, which is a diplomatic bit of hedging. Gareth will keep grandstanding like MacGregor Mathers edited for kindergarten. I'm so glad Conrad has his yellow magic and his owl form now. Until he can keep up enough to set the terms of the pretend games sometimes, he needs a way to play in Gareth's.
How did a kitchen witch like me end up with this mageboy?