Mordo knew, better than anyone, that magic was in every corner of reality. Even at a place where it wasn't supposed to exist.
It was something of a secret…not even the Ancient One knew of it, however, that didn't stop Karl Mordo. He had waited all year for Comic Con, and he wasn't about to allow anyone to get in his way. Not Dormamu, not the Mindless Ones, not whatever major magical problem had decided it rear its pathetic head that day. Today was about Comic Con, and Mordo was going to enjoy it.
He had work all year on his costume, a sleek simple shirt tucked against his belly, tight and twisted. It's cloth radiated the perfect mute of gray. As an undershirt, Mordo had stolen one of Wong's garments; it was as black as the space between stars. Mordo's hair, normally shaved down to his skull, had grown almost half a centimeter. Normally sorcerers are meant to keep their heads clear of all particles…but for Comic Con, Mordo made an exception.
He was dressed as The Operative from Serenity, a small film that never really got the attention it deserved. The Operative was a complicated a man. Someone who moved with a purpose and gave himself willingly to a greater power. A life Mordo knew intimately, and in a way, Mordo thought himself The Operative. A man who, through distant discipline, had found his purpose in something he could neither touch, or full understand. And at the end, this man who was so sure of his own convictions, had them smashed, and all that was left was a deep regret. Perhaps, in some strange world, he and The Operative might have been one in the same. Apparently, it was a film based off of a franchise called Firefly, another television show that was yanked away before it's completion, as many things are.
No matter, Mordo always believed that through belief and dedication, anything could live once more, and perhaps Firefly would one day begin anew. And maybe, just maybe, Serenity could have a sequel. Being a master of the mystic arts, Mordo had seen stranger things.
So many back home would find Mordo's interest in Comic Con strange, but, why exactly? Had they not protected the universe from so many threats beyond the imagination of mortal man? Some may even believe that these stories, and films of the fantastical were simply reflections of the worlds their creators had witnessed in their dreams.
And what of the cosplayers? Those who wished to see themselves as these figures? They were simply enacting a kind of magic that only they could weave. Wong would never know of crafting the perfect garment to represent you favorite Halo character. The Ancient One would not know of the labor in selecting the perfect fabric for your Crash Bandicoot costume. These were the workings of sorcerers skilled in the art of dreams. To picture, and envision, and craft in such a way that even the Sorcerer Supreme would be envious. Mordo had learned this magic, and grabbed hold of it with all his might.
Comic Con was a buzz with people, young and old, making their way down past comic book venders, and food merchants. The waiting hall was grand, grander even than the Ancient One's chambers, and dolls and figures of all shapes dangled from the ceilings like magic. How did they manage to hand them so high?
"Hey man, cool costume."
And from his side Mordo heard a pitch squeal that made him want to leap. "Oh?" Mordo asked as he turned his eyes to the person who called to him. It was a man—a boy really—who stood almost to Mordo's shoulders. His face grew patches of hair all across his chin, and his hair was wrapped in a tight do rag. Perhaps he was working on growing corn rolls? Who knew?
"Your costume, that's The Operative from Serenity, right?" His smiled widened, "I loved that movie, and you're a dead ringer for the guy who played him."
Mordo wanted to keep himself humble, love of flattery is a sure sign of a heart prone to envy. But, what the hell? He'd work hard on this costume and a little pride wouldn't hurt.
"Thank you my young friend," Mordo said. "I always liked to believe The Operative, at the end of the movie, went around the galaxy, trying to find redemption in himself…at least, I hope so." It was nice to talk to someone about his love of Serenity (the film…not the state of being. "I like your costume as well." The young man stood tall in a red-white-and blue soldier's uniform. A shield held together by take and dried glue hung across his left arm. "I take it you're a Captain America fan?"
The young man gave a cheeky salute, "Roger that! Cap's my favorite." But then his arms slowly slinked back down to his side, "But…looking around I kind of wish I'd gone with another guy."
"Oh?" Mordo asked, "Why? I can tell you've worked hard on it." And that wasn't just a compliment of the boy's craftsmanship, Mordo could actually sense the work that this man had placed in his costume. Mordo could sense the sleepless nights he spent sowing. Mordo could see the saved dollars that went into buying the polished red boots. Mordo could hear the sight of relief this boy exhaled when he found the perfect blue fabric to match Steve Rogers' uniform. Why was he not pleased?
"Well," the boy looked down, "Since I got here, I've had people come up to me, saying I look ridiculous. At first I thought it was because my costume was bad it was really because-" he balled his hands into fists, "-because I'm Black and Captain America ain't."
That's the stupidest fucking thing I've ever heard. Mordo wanted to say. From everything that had happened in this city, aliens from the sky, magic Vikings with hammers that could command the sky, a black Captain America was the least ridiculous. Hell, Mordo had seen worlds where there was a black Captain America. Several actually. And what kind of callous creaton would disregard such fine craftsmanship over something as petty as…
"Who exactly told you this?" Mordo asked.
The young man shook his head, "It doesn't matter. They're gone anyway."
Good, Mordo thought, Because I probably would have turned them into toads.
"Listen my friend," Mordo said as he patted his hand against the boys shield, "Ignore those small minded plebeians. It is not for them to judge which ideas belong to whom. Captain America is a symbol of bravery, and I'm quite sure you honor him by bearing his likeness." Through his own study, Mordo had learned of the limitations others wanted to place on him. What spells he was allowed to cast, what knowledge he was allowed to gain. No matter what the obstacle, he would not allow anyone's small minded ideas dictate who he was going to become. Let the fools place chains on themselves, but no one shall chain me.
"Do not allow others to place such limitations on you my young friend, for resistance to that way of thinking is a sign of greatness."
"Wow…you're way into The Operative." The young man said with a chuckle, "You even sound like him." He slung his shield over his back, "But you're right. Absolutely. Cap wouldn't let those dicks get him down, right?"
Mordo nodded, "Absolutely, now go my young friend, and 'Sock ol' Adolf in the jaw', as the saying goes."
The boy nodded, his eyes holding a small glow, and saluted, "Sir yes sir." And he disappeared into the crowd as easily as he came. A magic that Mordo still could not decipher.
"Still, it would be best if I moved forward as well." Mordo tightened his jacket around him, a small pride seeping into his words. "The Operative can't stay in one place too long, now can he? Places to go, and wrongs to right."
And Mordo stepped forward, out into the world of crafted costumes, in search of another place to spin his workings. Magic is an art that can be found everywhere.