Born In Fire

Calida is a fire child. Rare, but existent. Born in the flames of Mt. Pondii Peré, Venezuela's deadliest volcano. She has powers, extreme senses. She can think faster, see things that others don't. Her brain is much more than the average human's, a super-brain. Calida can run faster, jump higher, and figure out a person's life in a minute, she is deadly, like fire. But what happens when the Programme, the Government's top secret unit, finds out about what Calida can do? Will they understand her, or use her as a nameless weapon? After all, even fire can be extinguished.

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1. Igniting

The group huddled around a blazing bonfire, singing and laughing into their beers. I pushed my hands further into my duffel coat and allowed the warmth to crawl up to my finger tips. I felt the fire tingling, willing me to let it escape. I curled them closer to my palm. Wouldn't want my pockets suddenly lighting ablaze.

"Calina, isn't it?"

I smelled the alcohol on his breath. Three minutes old, I sensed. A cheap beer, I could sense that too.

"Calida, it is"

He laughed, a drunken splutter of spit. I leaned back instinctively. What a mess.

"So, why are you over here..." He yawned groggily. "...all on your own?" Then he slumped over and fell asleep on my knees. I pushed him off, once again reminded of the idiocy that is a teenage boy.

"Calida! Come on, the bonfire games are starting!"

I stepped over the drunken oaf on the sand, glancing at him once again. Average height, average build, average face. A dainty bracelet was on his left hand. That's all it was to others, a bracelet. But again, I wasn't quite like others. It was on his left hand, though he was right-handed, because the person who gave it to him wasn't important enough. I sensed further. No, not that. He didn't want her, yes it was most definitely a 'her', to be hurt by his actions. Hence, the right hand. He didn't want the responsibility, knew he wasn't good enough for her. It was feminine, like a girlfriend's token of her love. No, more innocent. A sister's love. He hid it up his sleeve because he doesn't want to be reminded of family, anyone he could be hurting by drinking, partying, messing his life around. He knew he shouldn't waste his life, but yet believed he couldn't amount to anything else.

"Calida, what are you doing? Stop messing around, Harry's lighting it up!"

I looked over. I shook the thoughts from my head. The senses were getting stronger. I could see further. Nano always said to push them down as deep as I could, never let people know how much I could read. It came to light when I was six years old, in a Disneyland store, buying Minnie Mouse light-up mouse ears. I was with Nano. I asked the cashier, a skinny teenager with mousy hair and statement eyebrows, why she didn't just ask the cute boy playing Peter Pan if he'd like to go out with her? Her eyes darting to and fro, not really concentrating. But although I asked the question, I sensed the answer before she could respond. I felt my mind searching, making connections, surveying her character, her past, present, future. It all happened so fast, too much at once.

"You feel insecure, you don't want to ask because you're afraid of rejection. Your daddy left you and your mommy all alone. You think it's you, that no one will ever want you. You walk around with your friends, pretending to be something. But you think your nothing."

The cashier's eyes went black.

"How...how did she know about Dad?"

Nano grabbed me, made a flimsy excuse that I was such an imaginative child, and we left the store without a word. I clutched the Minnie Mouse light-up ears, like I'd never let them go. That's when it all began.

"Mi hijo, what were you doing?"

Nano looked frightened, I hated seeing her that way.

"I just wanted to help her" I said, not understanding. To me, this is how everybody thought. I didn't realise the power I had.

"Calida, how did you know about that girl's padre?"

"I just...did. Didn't you?"

Nano paced back and forward, shaking her head and mumbling in Spanish.

"Did you hear something, querido? Hear that girl talking about her padre?"

"No"

"See something?"

"No"

Nano waved her hands in the air exasperatedly.

"¿Por qué? ¿Por Calida? ¿Por qué mi pequeña flor?"

"Nano, what's wrong with me?"

She looked at me with sincere pity and sadness.

"You did not come without a price. You are the fire's child"

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