Magick

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Zine
Title: Magick
Publisher: AMC Press
Editor:
Author(s): Kim Gasper
Cover Artist(s): TACS
Illustrator(s): TACS
Date(s): June 1998
Medium: print zine
Size:
Genre:
Fandom: The Sentinel
Language: English
External Links: link to online archived version and here
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.
cover by TACS
art for the cover by TACS

Magick is a 226-page Jim/Blair slash novel by Kim Gasper/Mickey M..

It was first published by AMC Press in 1999. In 2018, it was reissued in print and PDF by Requiem Publications.

Warnings

Most ads did not warn for sexual assault.

Summary

A gripping and exciting novel by Mickey M, has two mysterious murders occurring once every 30 days for the past several months. Messages in blood and mutilations in the form of cryptic writing and worse, are knifed on the bodies of two men found each time it happens and Jim is given the case. As strange and bewildering as it becomes, an explanation is soon unfortunately revealed...unfortunately, because Jim and Blair become the next targets. Kidnapped and imprisoned in an underground cave-like cell, the two are up against a cult and at their mercy and control. No way to escape, Ellison and Sandburg are forced into doing what the cult wants by means of drugs, deprivation, physical punishments and psychological torture. Fighting against the chemicals in him, Jim has to obey the cult leader and at the same time, try and protect Blair from them...and himself. I will say there is a dangerous and climatic escape but it seems that is only the beginning of problems now between Blair and Jim, as both will have to deal with what happened while they were imprisoned together. Can Jim handle the guilt brought on by his own actions to Blair? Will Blair leave him now that they're free? If he leaves, could Jim just go on with his life? Can Sandburg trust the working relationship any more? Can he even trust Jim anymore? Can he pull Jim out of a deep coma/zone-out brought on by massive guilt? And even with forgiveness, can what happened be put behind them for any kind of future relationship together? [1]

Interior Art

The zine contains numerous b&w interior drawings by TACS. Below is a small sampling.

Reactions and Reviews

Unknown Date

This is an amazing and well written novel, as would be expected by anything written by Kim Gasper. However, the story is about Jim and Blair being captured by a sadistic Satanic cult, who torture Jim and Blair sexually, and force Jim, through the use of drugs, to violently rape Sandburg. The last fourth of the novel is about Blair and Jim's recovery from this horrific experience and their struggle to keep their fledgling relationship alive in the face of mutual guilt, anger and shame. While this is a complex and engrossing novel, I would NOT describe this as "a-nice-curl-up-with-hot-chocolate" zine! Some readers may be extremely disturbed by this novel, as indeed I was. [2]
When I first read this I was pretty new to the slash fandom, and I think I found this a little too painful of a story. The sexual torture was too much. But as I've been in the slash part of the fandom a year longer now, I see our guys differently. Now I know they are strong enough to survive no matter what. Also I think it helps that now Jim and Blair are their own entities to me and I have completely disassociated them with the actors who play them, so that helps to make me more comfortable reading this story. I think there comes a time in a TS slash readers life when they want the ultimate hurt/comfort. I think most would agree that love triumphing over the devastating effects of sexual torture certainly fits that bill. However, I also believe we're in this part of the fandom because we want Jim and Blair to be a couple and faithful to each other; for their love to survive even through the very worst that can happen. But we don't want our guys to have sex with other people! If this is what you want to read, then I'd definitely suggest this 'zine! After re-reading most of it again today, I no longer see it as just "do or die" sex story. There's so much more to this 'zine, and now that I know Jim and Blair better than when I first read this story, I see strength, love, commitment, passion.... All the things I love Jim and Blair for. Mickey M has written the ultimate hurt/comfort story. I think when I first read this the rape was so powerful and shocking, that I was numb through the wonderful comfort/healing part of the story, which begins with their escape on page 129. So you can see we have about 70 pages of comfort here. And, OH! the Jim angst. His guilt is so complete and nearly consuming. Mickey M does such perfect hurt for Blair. 'K, it may sound terrible to say that, but I know my thought's are no different than the average persons and we can deny it or not talk about it, but sometimes we DO think about just how far a body can be pushed before it's pushed to far. Or just how much torture one's soul can take before the damage is irreparable. Well, Mickey M gives us that and I think she also balances it equally with the comfort. This is also a first time for our guys. Realizing their love while in the midst of their horror. Blair and Jim support each other and are so amazingly tender with each other even as they are trying not to become lost in the haze of guilt, pain and drugs. What I liked about this besides the powerful love between our guys, is that the bitches that kidnap them never have sex with our guys themselves. Well, that seems like a creepy thing to say, but it just seems worse, um, dirtier somehow if it's someone else touching our guys. Basically the premise is that the leader of the cult, with the help of her followers, force one man, using pain and drugs, to rape another. It's not good enough just to have sex, the women want the violence of the act. Then she (ick) extracts the semen and tries to become pregnant, afterwards killing and mutilating the men. Then, of course, she nabs Jim and Blair.... So that's it. Probably one of the most powerful hurt/comfort 'zines I've read. Powerful Jim angst/guilt. I do consider the sex Jim and Blair had while under the power of the women to be rape. However, and I don't want to say this makes it "better", but Blair never considered it rape. He didn't want the circumstances or the violence of the act but he loved and wanted Jim. [3]
I did not like this story at all. I purchased the zine because of the author, much as I would purchase a zine containing a story by Legion, or Francesca, or Sihaya Black, but I was so very disappointed. If I had had any idea of what the story was about, I would have passed it by. Jim and Blair are kidnapped by a couple of witches that want to get pregnant. They are *forced* to have sex repeatedly with each other. There is rape, forceful and painful enemas, violence, molestation, angst. It is a miserable, terrible thing they go through that I kept hoping would get better, I kept hoping to see the comfort--and never did. Blair is brutalized and raped by Jim repeatedly, and it is very much against Jim's will. Jim is wracked with guilt for what he is forced to do to Blair. There is no love, very little comfort, no joy. Period. And it ends badly. They don't die, but there is little hope for any real happiness in the foreseeable future. I even loaned the zine to a friend of mine who tends to like rape stories. This was her comment: "This story reminds me of stories my girlfriends and I used to write when I was 13 and 14, stories that allowed us to have sex without committing a sin, i.e. sex at gunpoint type stories. Those were at least a little fun, this was not. I did not like it either. If you are an angst-slut, then this is the zine for you. But DO NOT purchase this zine because of the name Mickey M. It is not like anything I have ever seen her write on the net. [4]
The author is so good at her job that she had me believing every single word about the Satanic Rituals... There were a number of times I had to stop reading because I would become so wrapped up in it, that I forgot it was a story and not real life... What Jim and Blair go through in this story is like every person's nightmare come true. It was dreadful and Mickey M wrote it so well that it scared the shit out of me. The things they had to endure were unthinkable. We just have to sit back and let Mickey M weave the tale of these two men trying to make their lives complete and whole again. And again, she does it perfectly. Mickey M makes the reader feel the pain, anguish, sorrow and anger that the men feel. She doesn't let you rest for one moment. The road to healing and self-discovery is very hard, heartbreaking and beautiful at the same time. This is a zine that will stick with me for a really long time. I recommend this to anyone that adores angst and good writing. You will find both here. Now about the art.... Okay, first off, let me say that this one needs a definite drool alert. Oh yeah. :-) TACS is so damned talented that I think she should share some of that with us that can't draw stick figures. (That would be me, yes.) The cover is beautiful, awesome but also a little scary. Which it should be. I love it. As usual she does a wonderful job of depicting how the guys look together. Very evil looking background, but gorgeous Jim and Blair. Oh yeah. The next one is a very real looking picture of Jim and Blair. Jim looks to be trying to comfort Blair. Oh like this would be new. Okay, my favorite so far is the one of Blair on the table with the woman over him. Holey Moley. The look on his face is pure fear. I love this one. TACS you have the look done perfectly. It scared the crap out of me, I know. Oh goody, Blair in the tub. It's very sensuous sounding, but the circumstances aren't that great. Again, the look on Blair's face shows us exactly what he's feeling. And I don't want to say anymore because otherwise no one will want to buy it to see the pictures. Naked Blair. My, my, this is beautiful. TACS what you do to a person. That's all I'll say about this one. The next one is Jim with the damn evil woman. Again, I don't want to say too much. But this is a very powerful piece. I love it. Okay, the hugging Jim and Blair just took over first place for my heart breaking picture. I love it. It's perfect. [5]
I have to explain my rating of this story, which is the reason I added the 'green star' designation to my rating system. This is an amazing and well written novel, as would be expected by anything written by Kim Gasper. However, the story is about Jim and Blair being captured by a sadistic Satanic cult, who torture Jim and Blair sexually, and force Jim, through the use of drugs, to violently rape Sandburg. The last fourth of the novel is about Blair and Jim's recovery from this horrific experience and their struggle to keep their fledgling relationship alive in the face of mutual guilt, anger and shame. While this is a complex and engrossing novel, I would NOT describe this as "a-nice-curl-up-with-hot-chocolate" zine! Some readers may be extremely disturbed by this novel, as indeed I was. Hence this warning. Note: This is yet another zine in which a whole lot of used copies were being sold at the Used Zines table. [6]
I have mixed reactions to this one. It does deal with rape, not one of my favorite themes for a story. On the other hand, Kim takes the time to work out the traumas that a rape entails. That I appreciate. [7]
This one is incredible long, around 800 K, total, but it is so worth it. Stinging angst, some major character torture, but man, she does it so well. This is one of those stories where you feel everything right along with the characters, so don't read it if you're feeling fragile.[8]

2000

"Magick": Kim Gasper is an author I like, but not uniformly. Sometimes she goes off into story premises that don't appeal to me, where I don't always agree with her characterizations. But even then she is reasonably competent in her writing technique. The premise of this novel is contrived: a coven of psychotic women kidnap Jim and Blair, drug them up and intend for Jim to rape Blair. In spite of the contrived plot, it was a real page-turner -- I *had* to keep reading to see how it all turned out. Both characters were strong, physically and emotionally. They relied on each other to get themselves through their ordeal (and out of it). [9]

>> What bothered me the most about this story was the deep mysogyny at the center--the woman-hatred that was embodied in the persona of the villain herself. Every squicky thing about femaleness was brought up and played with here, wreaked upon our helpless heroes. -- Kris Fawcett

The thing is, some women *do* embody a lot of squicky things. Women aren't exempt from the possibility of being evil and depraved, which is how I saw the villain in this story. I merely found the gender of the killer to be a literary choice for the sake of the plot, rather than a social or political choice in the name of misogyny.
Of course, this is my opinion, and since I've been told my writing was misogynistic in the past, I suppose it can be taken accordingly. ;) I just feel that women aren't exempt from being villains--if that were true, we wouldn't need women's correctional facilities and women on death row wouldn't be an issue.
I haven't read "Magick" in a long time, so I can't intelligently debate the details of the plot, but what stands out in my mind is that it was a well-written, compelling piece of work on a dark, controversial theme that is potentially offensive to some readers. As for the publisher, she's always answered any questions I asked her about a zine--and whoever mentioned the cover being a clue--yes, I thought the cover was pretty indicative of "dark themes", and if I hadn't known already what the story was about when I bought it, I would have definitely asked for clarification before buying it. [10]

>>My disappointment in the zine had little to do with misogyny (though I felt that the 'insanity' and motivations of the villains was poorly supported). I had no trouble at all with the violence, RL violence is what gets to me, fiction seldom does. What blew me out of the story over and over again were glaring plot holes/problems. -- Virg

Ack! The dreaded me too! Admittedly, I have a high squick factor and I bought the zines this year strictly on the basis of it being Kim Gasper. I figured she wouldn't really do a death story zine, so I was safe.
Her plots are generally not *this* swiss cheesy, so that is where I agree with Virg. The writing was still good enough that I squirmed abit at certain parts, but I got the feeling that, like many zine submissions, this wasn't Kim's best work and she knew it. I could be totally totally of base and I'm sure Kim will set me straight if so. :)
But...it was slash, nonetheless, and it was typical of this writer and I for one would hate to see 'net type warnings go on zines. [11]

2004

...fetid plot where a psycho!bitch kidnaps both j & b, forces them to have butt sex, then extracts the semen from blair's colon to impregnate herself? i am not making this up! the semen goes directly from anus to cervix. so much ewww on so many levels. but why not just slip jim a roofie and masturbate him in order to get the baby-making goods? you miss the hot butt sex! i remember sen fen raving about it at the time. i don't get it. i borrowed it from a friend and couldn't get through it. i googled the plot before i saw your reply and did find it. it's selling for over 20 bucks? i just don't get zines. that's a lot of money for enema porn. [12]

References

  1. Destinies Entwined, accessed 3.24.2010
  2. Soho Cafe
  3. Destinies Entwined, accessed 3.24.2011
  4. Destinies Entwined, accessed 3.24.2011
  5. Destinies Entwined, accessed 3.24.2011
  6. Raonaid's Zine Recommendations, Archived version
  7. Lynn W, via Wayback, accessed March 7, 2014
  8. from Seeking Solace
  9. comment at Prospect-L, a public mailing list, quoted anonymously (July 6, 2000)
  10. comment at Prospect-L, a public mailing list, quoted anonymously (September 6, 2000)
  11. comment at Prospect-L, a public mailing list, quoted anonymously (September 6, 2000)
  12. from Fanfic Haters Anonymous (Jyly23, 2004)