Soul of Flames

On the edge of the reality we know, there exists a pathway that conceals a realm far more extraordinary than any have dared to imagine. In this realm, a war is raging. And one girl is at the centre of it all. Yet, to fight the suffering, she must learn to accept a heritage that could send the life she knows up in flames. One way or another, she is about to discover that, sometimes, giving yourself to the flames can unlock your soul...

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12. Chapter 11-Robyn

I jolt awake, my breath coming in gasps. I sit up and wrap my arms around my knees, shivering even though I am covered in sweat.

I stretch a little, feeling my muscles relaxing slightly now that I am not trapped in the dream.

What was that? I’ve never had such a realistic nightmare before. Just the thought of I makes me feel ghostly ribbons wrapping around my limbs, and I shiver more. And that voice…

Suddenly, I feel like I am being watched. I freeze, looking slowly around the room. One look around the room reveals nothing, yet the sensation doesn’t go away. I scan the room again, searching with my other senses as well this time.

I spot a disturbance on my window seat; the patterns of light and shadow don’t quite seem right there. There’s a darker patch in the place where the moonlight should be. It vaguely seems to be in the shape of a person casually sitting there, one leg dangling over the side and one arm slung across the other knee. I see a head shape as well, but I can’t tell if it’s facing towards me, or staring out the window. Ever so slowly, I lean over to the other side of the bed, keeping a careful watch on the shadow by the window. It hasn’t moved yet, but I have the feeling that it knows exactly what I’m doing. It’s just waiting for the opportune moment.

Which comes pretty quickly. As I lift one leg to move to the floor, my cat, Kit, jumps up, startling me and causing me to fall onto the floor in a tangled mess in my covers. My cat jumps on top of me and starts meowing, patting my hand with her paw.

‘Not now, Kit, I’m trying to be quiet…’ I stop as I realise that me being quiet failed a long time ago. I glance over at the window fearfully, expecting to see a figure rising and coming toward me, with some sort of weapon in its hand.

But I see nothing. The silhouette has vanished into thin air.

I take a shaky breath in, relieved. I start stroking Kit, who promptly starts purring at me. I chuckle, laughing at my stupidity. Kit is notorious for attacking anyone she doesn’t know. If there had been a stranger in my room, she would’ve immediately started hissing at them. Obviously, there was never anyone in the room.

A hand is abruptly pressed over my mouth from behind and I am dragged backwards. I thrash around and pull at the hand, but to no avail. Whoever the mysterious person is is many times stronger than me.

Nevertheless, I keep fighting, desperately trying to get free. I try to use my nails to scratch my assailant’s hand, but they meet strong leather, which I have no hope of doing any damage to.

The mystery person grabs my hand and pulls it behind my back with the other one, gripping them in one hand. In the back of my mind, I realise this means he’s got pretty big hands-even though I’m fairly small, to completely immobilise both my hands would require pretty big hands. Which means my attacker must be a man. And men have a major weakness.

As fast as I can, I whip my head backwards, straight into the place where his legs join. I hear a grunt of pain and the grip on my hands loosens, allowing me to pull his other hand away from my face and push away from him, untangling myself from the covers as I do.

I turn to face him again, my hands set for a fight (which is the only thing my dad ever taught me) but nothing happens. Warily, I move my hands down slightly and look closer at the space in front of me. There’s definitely nothing there.

‘Your cat’s very friendly. Unlike you.’ A male voice sounds behind me and I spin round, almost tripping over again. I really need to work on my coordination…

There’s a figure lazing on my window seat again, but this time the shadows don’t seem to be hiding him as well. I can make out a slim, but well-muscled guy with tanned skin and messy black hair. His eyes gleam in the moonlight. And sitting with him on the window seat is Kit, purring away as he strokes her head. That traitor.

‘Who are you, and why does my cat like you?’ I question, my eyes narrowed.

He raises his eyebrows. ‘That’s what you want to know? Why your cat likes me?’

I frown. ‘Obviously. She doesn’t like anyone except me.’ He stares at me in amazement, then looks away and shakes his head, chuckling softly.

‘You have a strange guy in your room that basically just attacked you, yet you’re insulted by your cat liking me.’

When he says it like that, I realise how stupid I am. I shrink back towards the wall, running my hand along it, searching for a weapon.

The guy watches me, his expression changing from amused to blank. Looking at him is like looking at a stone wall, unable to glean any information from him.

‘And now you realise. It doesn’t matter anyway.’ As he speaks, the shadows seem to darken around him, until he is just a silhouette again.

He stops stroking Kit and pushes her away, rising to his feet. ‘I just came to give you a warning. We are coming.’ Then he turns and leaps out the open window, immediately blending into the night, as if he’d never been there at all.

I stay hugging the wall for a few more minutes, staring unblinkingly at the window. When nothing emerges, I cautiously step over to the window and close it, locking it with the key.

Then I turn and collapse on the floor in my duvet pile, wondering what the hell is up with my head.

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