He spits out something like ‘you damned hot coffee,’ as he feels the burning hot liquid underneath his white silken shirt, while leaning his head to see this very bad stain just being made. But it’s his empty hand which catches his glimpse. ‘What in …’
The cup and the coffee together have just become colored powder and their specks are soon invisible into the air. This weird thing leaves him breathless. It’s not something he doesn’t know, on the contrary; he thought, though, he had irretrievably lost the cursed gift – the precious gift – after his granddaddy’s death.
He recalls the first incident kept in a memory corner of his brain: He still was a toddler. He hated that food. He wanted badly not to have that food in the plate before him. He doesn’t remember the kind of food though. He certainly remembers the food dematerializing before his mommy’s amazed face. He remembers the baby he was laughing at mommy’s look.
However, it was later on, when he had grown up and was at infant school that he first realized he could exterminate whatever he didn’t like. It was a toy then, a toy he liked very much. At that far away in the past day, he recalls smiling, the toy didn’t mean to function. He doesn’t remember the kind of toy; he only remembers the infants’ and teachers’ astonished looks.
‘‘Are you all right, sir? Do you want me to help you in some way?’’. It’s the waiter speaking. He nods he’s ok, walks out of the coffee shop, and then towards the next block and at the cleaner’s.
He recalls his granddaddy’s last moments: ‘‘Listen to me now, son; listen to me carefully. I’m talking to you like man to man; I’m asking you for a great favor: I want you to deactivate this gift of yours.’’ He remembers him emphasizing ‘deactivate’ the new word. ‘‘You have to let it be lost. You have to forget you have it. And then some day when you’ll be grown up and you’ll have find out the other way around – you know, how you can create things – you’ll have it back so that you can destroy everything you don’t really like at all; you can rub out everything useless and harmful and noisome for you, and for people, and for the whole world. I want you to promise me you’ll do this as soon as I’m no more. Promise?’’ ‘‘Promise!’’ ‘‘Go now, son, go playing. I’ll take a nap here beneath my loving cherry tree’s shade.’’ After a little while he heard his mommy’s cry, and he knew granddaddy was no more.
He puts on his now clean shirt and the woolen coat upon it and walks out of the cleaner’s and towards the block where the company he works for occupies some leased offices downtown. He’s well dressed today since he has to introduce a new project to his bosses. He has worked hard for this, and he aspires to get both the promotion and the raise as well.
He recalls the verse of that poem. It was his first falling in love with girl who loved poetry, and made him love it too. How does it go? Oh, yes: ‘There is a silence in the world/ Since we have said farewell;/ And beauty with an alien speech/ An alien tale would tell…’  An alien tale, an alien tale he needs to tell him why the gift of creating was never given to him and why the gift of destroying is back in spite his very promise.
 Afterwards, by Clark Ashton Smith.