Sleight of Hand preview
The theater was small, seating maybe about one hundred people. Despite being only half full, it was hot and stuffy and much too crowded.
John Laurens shifted restlessly in his seat, smoothing down his skirt while his eyes were fixated on the stage. Bright with light, he watched as a young man with glistening dark skin and curly black locks stood upon the stage, holding three large golden rings. He tapped them together a few times, then hit them together; suddenly they were linked, creating a chain.
The audience murmured, though it was unclear whether it was from amazement or boredom. John shifted, glancing around him.
“No spice in his act,” came a voice beside him. John looked at Alexander Hamilton, who sat on his right with his eyes fixated on the magician. “It’s boring. No showmanship. He’s always been bland.”
John took a deep breath, trying to not feel lightheaded in the heat. “Not particularly… exciting,” he agreed in a whisper. Though his hair was pulled back in a ponytail, it felt hot against his neck.
“Same tricks, same three parts.” Alex sighed. “I’ve been to several of his shows. Nothing new. Nothing… interesting.”
George Washington, sitting on his left, leaned over. “They’ve always been rivals,” he whispered. “Ever since they worked together as shills for one of my former magicians, Thomas has been Alex’s… competitor.”
“Enemy,” Alex muttered. He glanced at John. “It should be easy for us to outdo him.”