wizard mask

7
  • ACTION COMICS #40 inspired by BILL & TED’S EXCELLENT ADVENTURE, with cover art by Joe Quinones
  • AQUAMAN #40 inspired by FREE WILLY, with cover art by Richard Horie
  • BATGIRL #40 inspired by PURPLE RAIN, with cover art by Cliff Chiang
  • BATMAN #40 inspired by THE MASK, with cover art by Dave Johnson
  • BATMAN & ROBIN #40 inspired by HARRY POTTER, with cover art by Tommy Lee Edwards
  • BATMAN/SUPERMAN #20 inspired by THE FUGITIVE, with cover art by Tony Harris
  • CATWOMAN #40 inspired by BULLITT, with cover art by Dave Johnson
  • DETECTIVE COMICS #40 inspired by THE MATRIX, with cover art by Brian Stelfreeze
  • FLASH #40 inspired by NORTH BY NORTHWEST, with cover art by Bill Sienkiewicz
  • HARLEY QUINN #16 inspired by JAILHOUSE ROCK, with cover art by Dave Johnson
  • GRAYSON #8 inspired by ENTER THE DRAGON, with cover art by Bill Sienkiewicz
  • GREEN LANTERN #40 inspired by 2001: A SPACE ODYSSEY, with cover art by Tony Harris
  • GREEN LANTERN CORPS #40 inspired by FORBIDDEN PLANET, with cover cover art by Tony Harris
  • JUSTICE LEAGUE UNITED #10 inspired by MARS ATTACKS, with cover art by Marco D'Alphonso
  • JUSTICE LEAGUE #40 inspired by MAGIC MIKE, with cover art by Emanuela Lupacchino
  • JUSTICE LEAGUE DARK #40 inspired by BEETLEJUICE, with cover art by Joe Quinones
  • TEEN TITANS #8 inspired by THE LOST BOYS, with cover art by Alex Garner
  • SINESTRO #11 inspired by WESTWORLD, with cover art by Dave Johnson
  • SUPERGIRL #40 inspired by WIZARD OF OZ, with cover art by Marco D'Alphonso
  • SUPERMAN #40 inspired by SUPER FLY, with cover art by Dave Johnson
  • SUPERMAN/WONDER WOMAN #17 inspired cover by GONE WITH THE WIND, with art by Gene Ha
  • WONDER WOMAN #40 inspired by 300, with cover art by Bill Sienkiewicz
8

WIZARDING SCHOOLS AROUND THE WORLD: VENICE

If the city of Venice seems a confounding maze of canals and narrow alleyways, then the Venetian Academy for the Magically Gifted can only be described as a dangerous labyrinth of corridors, many in various stages of submerge. Wild magical marine animals inhabit abandoned hallways, and the sound of rushing water echoes in empty classrooms at night. The school is housed mostly underwater in sunken parts of the city that linger undetected below Venice with a few buildings scattered throughout the island. In the years when Venice flourished with prosperity, the magic and non-magic folk mingled with affection, particularly during the Carnival of Venice during which muggle folk would be quite taken with the charmed flourishes decorating witches and wizards’ masks. As a result of these close interactions, most inhabitants of Venice harbour faint traces of magic in their blood, most of whose power—however little and insignificant—manifest in one’s elder years, or sometimes not at all. Although, there are often whisperings that tell of Venetians’ strange ability to walk on water. Some swear to have heard the sound of pattering footsteps on the canals, usually at night time on days when the fog is particularly heavy. Other claim of shapes of men and women passing over the water. No one knows for certain the magic Venice holds, except for the inhabitants themselves.

These are familiar titles on the shelf. Dark Arts through the Ages. A History of Cursed Objects and How to Recognize Them. A History of the Wars of the Jewels. Some Account of the Fore-Part of the Life of Salazar Slytherin and His Involvement in the Founding of Hogwarts. A History of the Magical Peoples of Europe. A Case for the Abolition of the Statute of Secrecy and the Subjugation of the Non-Magical Peoples of Europe. The Pure-Blood Directory. The Fundamental Tenets of Magical Law in England. Mythologiques Magicales (all the volumes, naturally).

And yet, and yet. There is something not quite right about this bookshelf. Too unnatural. Too obvious. Something unnaturalShimmering. Move a little to the left and there it is, the slight shimmer. So very slight, nobody pays any attention to it. This house is old, this house is full of dark magic - a little shimmer on a bookshelf hardly attracts any attention.

So it goes unnoticed for years.

And as the years tick on, he keeps adding to this shelf, smuggling books in under his robes. He can’t help it, he bathes himself after reading each one, whispering Scourgify as he watches the skin on his hands peel off. Still he keeps coming back, taking them down and reading them, feeling like scum and mud and filth afterwards. He ought to burn them, burn them all, but he is drawn.

He is filth.

(Muggle sorcery, he tells himself.)

Some he reads immediately, staying up late at night and reading by the light of his wand so that his mother will not catch him - so that he can pretend; if no one sees me it is not real. Some he reads again and again, letting the words settle until he can quote word for word, page for page because those are the words which matter.

It’s quite the collection he has. Esoteric titles his mother would almost certainly disapprove of. Muggle titles. 

(It’s not as though she has the right to care anymore, not when she’s been cold as the tombstones in their family burial ground. All she cares about is the death-cold mask and that, at least, is an art he has perfected.

He still whispers Scourgify and watches the way the skin on his hands turns red and raw.)

The glamours are as cold as the mask he wears every minute of his day. So he strips them away at night, when the cold chill finally settles on the grim and silent old house (like a tomb for the living) and his mind begins to wander and he wonders if he has finally turned into the cold, pure stone statue they all seem to want him to be. He strips away each glamour and takes them down from his shelf one by one, opens them and breathes. Each page crackles with warmth, with life, with the thought lives of hundreds of people stretching over hundreds of years.

He reads them again and again. The Stranger. Waiting for Godot. The Plague. Eyeless in Gaza. Crime and Punishment. Howl and Other Poems. The Waste Land. 

He reads them again and again to remind himself that he is warm flesh and blood. That he is more than just a mask, or a carefully chiseled statute. He is not merely their Galatea. He is a liar. He is a traitor. He is filth. He is unnatural. He is his own person.

He is real.

The glamours go back up. The cold mask settles itself on his skin, makes it creep and crawl. And once again he is their Galatea, a perfect work of art, rotten and maggoty underneath.

(for johnegbertthefeminist who wanted to hear more about Regulus Black. Image Source.)

Word Travels Fast

“Oh, you’ve got to be shitting me…” Meg growled angrily as she gracelessly dove under a table to avoid a rather nasty hex that a masked man had sent. Panting slightly, she took in her surroundings to find an edge she could use against the source of the hexes.

~

To back up, the original mission had been a long-winded one: there was an illegal trading of a foreign supplement to floo powder that had been discovered by the ministry several months before. Underground gangs had been using it to move other illegal substances (stolen artifacts, illegal potions, magical items, exotic creatures, etc) so the ministry wouldn’t be able to track it. The ministry as a whole were tasked with shutting down the operation. There were three different factions of the operation: policing, researching, and containment. Policing was mainly charged to the Auror department, led by the one and only Harry Potter. Their jobs were to arrest and question members of the suppliers and the users to try and discover patterns in their activity. Another task assigned to the Auror office was to collect items and rogue floo powder found at crime scenes. So far they were somewhat successful in shutting down operations, but nobody was celebrating yet. Research came from a collaboration of several different departments on what the consistency of the floo powder was and what made it different from the ministry-grade powder. Containment… well, containment was to make sure the public wouldn’t go into a panic thinking that criminals could just appear in their homes to steal their property and disappear without a trace. 

~

“Good times, huh?” Triggs, her partner, shouted across the room as he joined her under the table. Curses and hexes and shouts surrounded the pair. 

“Oh, just thrilling.” she shot back dryly with a roll of her eyes. “You called it in, right?” 

“Of course. But you know you were getting bored at the office with all that filing….” Triggs replied with a chuckle. “Loved the dive, by the by… Absolutely stunning.” 

“Oh, shove it, you ass!” she laughed as Triggs went back into the fray, flying his counter curses as he went. It was true that she and Triggs weren’t the top of the food chain, but they made it work. So even thought it was the legendary Harry Potter who was leading the charge, they had never actually worked with him personally. This particular tussle was only supposed to be a securing of discovered powder to be filed for the research faction. What they weren’t prepared for was a faction of the gang going to do the same thing. After throwing some of her own hexes, she heard a cry from Triggs as he was hit by a full body-bind curse. 

“Triggs!” she called out as she immediately jumped out from her hiding spot and made her way through hexes and jinxes over to her partner. She threw her own hexes and jinxes, of course, and so the amount of spells she had to deflect were decreasing as she continued. 

“She’s got a soft spot on her back, aim for that!” Meg heard as she deflected her way to the other side of the warehouse. All she needed to do was to get Triggs back on his feet before they could try and hold them off until back up came. 

“Sectumsempra!” a voice behind her shouted and all of her spells halted immediately as she felt an invisible blade carve right through to the bones in her back. Any cry in pain she would have had was silenced by the blood coming up and out of her mouth, dribbling down her chin as she collapsed on the ground next to a panicked, yet still frozen, Triggs. Still conscious, Meg glanced at Triggs’ helpless face before glaring up at the group of half a dozen masked wizards and witches. 

“Jesus, you Ministry pricks don’t go down easily, do you?” one of them chuckled. “I’ll give you props for lasting as long as you did, though.” 

Even behind their masks, Meg could feel their shock and fear as she willed herself to stand, blood dripping from her robes. 

“Fuck off.” she murmured darkly as she raised her wand. Before they could react, she screeched “Petrificus Totalus!!” and from her wand the curse pulsed and hit all of them simultaneously. They all froze and toppled over like human-dominos. 

Her wand slipped from her fingers as she stumbled towards Triggs, who gained his autonomy as the gang members fell, before her knees gave out and she collapsed to the ground. 

“Prescott!” he screamed in a panic as that was the last thing she could hear before everything went black.