over to stand in front of my bottle. He lowered his face to stare at me. I retreated as far as I could. It was like being on the wrong side of the glass with a spotty teenager leering into the magic mirrors on a fairground stall. His elongated face showed scratchy stubble that belonged more to a youth trying to grow a beard than to a man in need of a shave. A bulbous nose ballooned as he pressed it against my bottle, peering short-sightedly through wire-rimmed spectacles. His eyes behind the two layers of distorting glass were like a pair of fried eggs with vivid blue yolks. I cringed and tried to move further back, but there was nowhere to go. He straightened up and sauntered over to one of the benches. His retro Led Zeppelin t-shirt and the baggy jeans with waistband sagging below the elastic of his boxers confirmed my initial impression that my captor was a nerd, and a young one at that. However, his youth was no excuse for his atrocious manners, nor would it save him from my wrath when I gained my freedom. So, back to escape plans. Pity I had none. I’d already tried everything I could think of. This left me with nothing to do but watch the nerd tapping on a keyboard. For all I knew he was answering emails, but even through the glass walls of my prison I sensed a certain excitement. I’ve become pretty good at reading humans over the centuries, and his twitchy movements along with frequent palm wiping on his jeans screamed anxiety. Without warning, he whipped around and lunged towards me. The feverish glow on his face set my already jittery nerves jangling. Before I knew it I was swinging through the air, my bottle clasped in his hands. His sweaty palms left smears on the outside of my prison after he dumped it on the floor. Now that I could see the floor, I could also see the large circle chalked onto the granite slabs. Typical Highland flooring, and even through the numbness of the spells I could feel the pull of the tides and the rush of a river not too far away. Wherever we were, we hadn’t gone far from my native Scottish waterways. With his back towards me, the magician fumbled amongst the clutter on another bench. He turned with a triumphant grin and strode back into his circle carrying a metal thermos, his hands encased in huge padded gauntlets. He put it down a few feet away from me.