The Fire

The night was dark, the flames were not. Sweet dreams and promises cracked with each lick of the tongues of fires, reaching, seizing, then pulling the entire building into its fiery embrace.

The fire trucks took too long to get there, the fundings (or lack of) to blame; the hoses were too short, the ladders even shorter. She was merely strolling by the streets that day, refusing to return to the company of her…roommate in fear of what he would say. So, when she saw the fire she was almost glad, “I can prove that I am useful, to remind myself that it doesn’t matter what he thinks.”

While bystanders put themselves to use by screaming at nothing, she blended into their collective panic, making her way towards the edge of the building, past the fire trucks, beyond the reach of the warnings of all those that cared enough.

She went into the main entrance of the building, its jambs yet to collapse along with other stronger supports, the heat a welcoming reminder of what she could do. A flame offered a sliver of a hand, she seized it, and melted into the fiery. Then she was part of the building…no, part of the flames that is so much of the building…no, no….she was the fire. While she tasted the hunger for destruction, saw all corners of the apartments, smelled the rancidity of burning mold she felt the life dodging in between the choking fumes, running to higher grounds, mortified. She tried her best, and her best sufficed, and drew herself into the center of the building, gathered herself, collected the flames, compress, push, until nothing is left but a ball of fire, then she transformed again, back to the form humanity more or less find it easier to accept.

She grumbled to herself that she didn’t think it through before she used her power as such…the bystanders wondered, the firefighters paused before claiming credit, while the survivors scuttled out of the remnants of the catastrophe to thank their heroes and mourn their losses.

She brushed off the ashes and debris before walking off, continuing her stroll into the night and down the street.


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