The only exception

None survive supernova...

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1. None survive...

 

   Flames swirl around me. I hold my hands out as if to ward myself against it. My focus os on the center of the flames. I couldn’t hear her screams anymore. She might be gone. I could be struggling to save a dead girl.

    No! I grit my teeth. She’s trapped in fire. I’m a fire mage. The fire is mine

    I scream, mindless of the smoke. It doesn’t matter anymore. Nothing matters except the girl trapped inside the flames. I have to save her. I will save her! 

    I can feel the flames calling me. They want to pull me in. To drown me. But if I let them, they’ll kill me. They’ll take me with her. 

    Tears begin to slip down my face. They burn worse than the flames around me. I shake, my concentration beginning to fail me. There’s too much fire. Why did I think I could control it? What made me think that I could save her?! She’s already lost. She’s gone. I have to stop. I have to let go, or I’ll die. 

    But I can’t stop. There has to be a chance. She has to be in there. I can’t be fighting to save someone that’s dead. 

    I bring her face to mind. Those soft, gentle eyes of hers. Her voice- so clean. So sweet. Like a bell. But even that is fading. Does that mean she’s gone? Will the memories of her leave me forever?!

    No. I cannot lose her. Not while I can still save her!

    I cannot think any longer. I can only act. I must act. I must save her. 

    Rage fills me, and the fire responds, growing stronger. I scream, and pull back on it with all my strength. The fire reaches out to me again, and I accept its pull. The flames leap to me, and I let them come. They burn against my skin, but I feel nothing. She’s in there. My sister is in there. I have to save her. If it’s the last thing I do.   I force the fire to my will, and somehow, it works. The flames around me grow hotter and hotter, and I scream as I begin to burn. Flames spread across my body, bringing unbelievable pain with them. I fall to my knees, glowing tears leaking their way down my face. My eyes burn. I can see nothing through the smoke and flames that surround me. She must be dead by now. And…

    So am I. 

    I give up, and let the flames take me. 

    

    What surprises me? I’m not dead. I look down at my hands, and find two glowing claws of flame. I stare at them in awe. I feel… powerful. The fire no longer frightens me. How had it ever frightened me? I must have been so stupid. So childish. The fire is close to me, but is that a bad thing? No. It is my weapon. An unstoppable weapon. 

    I let out a laugh, and tear the fire away from the building, summoning it to me. Something about that feels important, but what could matter, other than adding to myself- to my own brilliance. My hands glow brighter, and all of me shines.

    Then something catches my attention. A small round sphere of brightness that is destroying the flames around it. Its so small- so insignificant. It should not last in the fire. but it does. I lean closer, and try to touch it. 

    Pain erupts in my hand, and I jerk it back with a howl that sounds nothing like my own voice. How does this thing- this lesser object- stand in my way?! How dare it snuff my fire?!

    I reach down, and again it pains me. This time I push through this object. Its gelatinous almost like…

    Water.

    A faint memory reaches out to me. A deep, blue lake, filled with water. Jumping in, and laughing. Another laugh joins me, and I turn to see- 

    It’s gone. I snarl in disorientation, and snatch at the thing in the center, holding it up to eye level.

    It’s a girl. Her wispy blond hair floats around her face, stirred up by the smoke. Ash streaks her face and she looks at me with wide eyes. I recognize those eyes. I hold her closer, and her face contorts with pain. I let out a soft growl and squeeze her tighter, needing her to open her eyes. Needing to see why I remember her.

    “Kita, why are you doing this?!” she cries, tears slipping down her face. They splash against my skin and I growl with pain. 

    “I am power,” I whisper. My voice is harsh and dark- nothing like my own voice. “I am strong. You stand in the way. You destroy my flames. You must be killed.”

    “No!” she struggles against my grip. It’s as amusing as it is pathetic. She thinks she can escape me? “You’re not this… monster. You’re Kita. You’re my sister!”

    My sister… 

    “I have no sister,” I hiss. Flames brush against the side of her face she cries out.

    “Yes you do! Don’t you remember me?! It’s me, Tela. It’s me! How do you not recognize me? What’s happened to you?”

    “I’ve realized my powers,” I whisper. 

    “You- no…” her eyes widen with realization. “You’re a nova.”

    “A nova?” I haven’t heard this term before. What does she know?

    “When a mage loses control of their powers, they go supernova. It kills them. But you… you’re alive. But huge. You can’t see yourself? You’re gigantic- and made out of fire.” She grits her teeth as my hands glow with heat. “This monster isn’t you, sister! Come back to me! Please.” More tears burn against me. “I love you,” she says, her voice full of heartbreak. “I love you, Kita. I need you to come back. Please!”

    My hands are cooling as memory fills me. The fire around me no longer feels so comfortable. I can feel myself contracting. Shrinking. The girl in my hands begins to glow.

    “Come back to me,” she says, her voice barely audible. And then I am surrounded by fire.

    Pain fills my mind. My very being is consumed by it, and I can sense nothing else. I scream and scream and scream, sure that this is my end.

    And then, suddenly, the fire is gone. I’m kneeling on the ground. And a few feet away from me lies a motionless girl.

    “Tela?” I try to stand, but my legs are too weak to hold me. Frustration brims inside me, and I crawl desperately, until I reach my sister. I roll her over, cradling her head in my lap. “Tela!”
    “K-Kita…” she whispers. “You… you’re alive. Not a nova.”

    “What happened to me?”
    “I don’t… I don’t know… I love you, Kit… Love… you…” her eyes close, and she goes still.

    “No!” I panic, shaking her shoulder in desperation. “No no no please no… Tela come on, wake up…” But inside, I know she’s not going to wake up. She’s dead. She’s dead and gone and it’s my fault.

    Finally, I give up trying to revive her. I press my head against hers, and begin to sob helplessly. She’s gone. My sister is gone. She saved me… somehow she brought me back from nova. But she lost her own life.

    “WHY?!” I screamed in rage. No fire responded to me, and I felt a strange emptiness where my powers had been. But I didn’t care. I never wanted to see fire again as long as I lived.

    I let my sobs carry me away, and for a time felt nothing but sorrow. Finally, I opened my eyes, and closed hers. 

    None survive nova. My sister had somehow reversed the process. Perhaps by giving me her own life force. My stupid, wonderful sister had sacrificed herself to save me. 

    “I’m so sorry, Tela,” I whispered weakly. “Please forgive me.” Then I stood, leaving my sister’s body where it was. There was nothing I could do for her. She was gone, and so were my powers.

    It should have been me. 

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