Hotter Than Fire

**Darkest Minds Fanfiction** Tamarin is twelve years old when his little sister Chamberly is taken away by soldiers in black. Several inexplicable things happen that day, including explosions and unexplained fires. Six years later, now 16, Tam begins to understand everything that's happened. He discovers his identity as a red. Attempting to survive, he searches for Chamberly- joining up with some interesting allies along the way.


2. Just a Dream

    Six years later


    “Tamarin!” my mother calls. “Tamarin, come down already! You’re going to be late for school!”

    “You’re so slow, Tammy!” Chamberly’s little sing-song voice rings out.

    I look around me, my vision fuzzy at first. Slowly it grows clearer, and I recognize where I am. I am standing in a small blue room- walls decorated with horse racing posters and score charts. Horse racing. When had I ever enjoyed something so childish? However, this tells me where I am- my room.

    “Tam!” my mother calls a second time. “If you want breakfast, you’re going to have to come down now!”

    Despite myself, I reply. “Coming, mom!”

    Slowly, I open my door and start down the stairs, heading for our kitchen. Just as I step into the well-lit room, I am nearly tackled by Chamberly, who is hugging me and laughing. I laugh too- until I realize the problem.

    Chamberly’s hands- they’re too small. She would 16 by now- tall, smart, and beautiful. But Chamberly is gone. And the Chamberly in front of me has small hands. Child’s hands. As if she had been frozen in the the day before- or maybe the day of- her disappearance.

    A high scream. An explosion. Blood. Pain. Fire.

    I blink. Chamberly is looking me in the eyes now, her too-young face screwed with worry. “Tammy? Are you okay?”

    “Fine,” I murmur. She smiles, plants a kiss on my forehead, and skips away. Slowly, almost reluctantly, I look down, taking in my own hands. They are calloused and weathered- and too large. I am the only thing not stuck in time here. And therefore, I do not belong.

    For a moment, I wish I could stay here- hold myself in this time forever.  But already, I feel myself surfacing, as if rising through deep water. Reluctantly, I let the dream go. It peels away, rising in curtains of mist, until it dissolves completely.

    My surroundings become real. This is not my house. Chamberly’s laughter is gone. I am alone.

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