A young woman stood at the top of Mount Desino, staring blankly ahead. The wind blew her blue cloak behind her and the cold snow nipped at her ankles. Her grey eyes never blinked as she stared at the landscape before her. The sky turned a deep shade of blue, signaling that twilight was upon the world. The air grew steadily colder, but the woman seemed unfazed by it. She stood there motionless, as if the slightest movement would somehow disturb the atmosphere surrounding her. The only sound that escaped her lips was an outtake of breath as a wave of power left her body, the cold air suddenly becoming impossible to bear as it invaded her body and left her with a sense of fear.
“The Immorticae of fire has just died,” she said to herself as she doubled over, clutching her arms in an attempt to warm up as her vision became clearer. “He was killed by a Seeker. The Immorticae’s spirit must now find a new body to survive in.”
Suddenly, as quickly as the cold air came, it stopped. The woman stood up once more.
“I sense that the spirit has just found a new body,” she closed her eyes. “I cannot see who this new Immorticae is…Perhaps this body is the one that I have seen in my vision earlier.”
The woman opened her eyes and studied the seemingly endless world below her. A vast ocean stretched for miles, separating two large forests. Two grassy plains were at the ends of the forest, joined together by a large desert. If she looked hard enough, she could just barely see the mountain range opposite to her. Small villages were scattered around the world, most using the trees in either forest for wood. This was the world the Immorticae had created. This was the world of spirits watching over everything and everyone, mapping out their lives and destinies. This was the world where peace was of chief importance. This was the world she watched over as a ruler.
This was the world that was falling apart right in front of her…
It was almost four o’clock on a partly cloudy day in the small village of Spero. Streaks of sunlight broke through their clouded prisons and shone into the windows of the small buildings, delighting the small children as the walls and floors were given a rainbow hue. Everyone was going about their daily business. One woman was arguing with the man running the market about the “outrageously overpriced” oranges she was buying. Two men worked diligently on building a home for their brother’s family, not even acknowledging the sweat seeping through their shirts or the large and painful calluses on their palms. A young boy was in his house, his older sister trying to help him with his history homework. Everything seemed to be at peace.
One young woman, however, was anything but peaceful at the moment. Matrissa Fortis sat in a wooden chair in the middle of her kitchen, her hands clasped tightly over the cotton skirt she had sewn for herself. Her grey eyes glanced at the grandfather clock in the living room every couple of seconds, her expression becoming more worried every time.
“Dear Spirits,” she whispered to herself, “just please let her be alright. Please let Kyra be safe.”
It had been two days since Matrissa’s daughter, Kyra, had been seen. From what Matrissa had heard from Kyra’s teacher, some of the other students were teasing Kyra. This did not come as a surprise to anyone. Matrissa’s daughter had always been a little bit…odd. While most of the girls Kyra’s age were playing with their dolls and getting together with friends, Kyra would be in her room, studying ancient runes. Many of the girls loved wearing extravagant dresses and had their hair tied back in ways that made them looked older and more mature. Kyra preferred wearing her black jeans matched with a green sweater that contrasted heavily against her pale skin. She kept her long, curly black hair down in a way that left one strand to cover part of her left eye. Kyra was very quiet, but not exactly shy, and she was known for her quick temper. Ever since the winter of two years before, most people who did not know her would simply refer to her as “the one who broke Wesley’s arm.”
Still, she was Matrissa’s child, whom she loved unconditionally. The teacher had told her that one of the girls who were teasing her spat in her face and Kyra ran away. Some of the students had tried to follow her, but Kyra was very athletic and the students had quickly lost sight of her. Everyone had assumed that she would return within a few hours. Now, two days later, Matrissa was sitting in her kitchen, her eyes constantly watching the clock.
Suddenly, the front door burst open. A boy with dark brown hair entered with his father, who was holding a young, black-haired girl in his arms.
“We found her!” the boy exclaimed.
Matrissa jumped out of her chair and wrapped her arms around her son. “Oh thank the Spirits!” She turned to her husband. “Where did you find her?”
“In the forest,” Abbastus Fortis answered. “Castor saw part of her shoe sticking out from behind a tree and we found her laying there.”
Matrissa hugged the two men again and froze when she had come to a terrifying realization; her daughter wasn’t moving.
“No, she has a pulse,” Abbastus responded, knowing what his wife was thinking. “But I don’t know why she’s unconscious. I know she’s not asleep because we tried to wake her up.”
“Then what’s wrong with her?”
“I have no idea.”
Tears pricked Matrissa’s eyes as her husband placed the small girl in her bed. Kyra did not even shift positions.
“Oh please, Spirits!” Matrissa prayed again. “Just let my daughter live! She has done nothing to deserve this! She is only seven years old! Please don’t let my child die!”
Unfortunately, her pleas were not answered. Four days later, the village doctor was called in. Kyra had not woken up or even moved since she was found. The doctor examined the child’s body, writing something down on his clipboard every so often. After half an hour, the doctor stood up and straightened his coat.
“I am terribly sorry, Mrs. Fortis,” he said as he cast another look at the girl. “She is alive and is actually doing very well. She wasn’t injured or seemed to have received some sort of blow to render her unconscious. Her breathing and heart rate are both normal and she doesn’t seem to be ill. She didn’t ingest anything that would have caused this and there are no signs of anything that could be even remotely responsible for this coma. She actually seems to be in perfect health, other than the fact that she won’t wake up.”
“But how is that possible?” Matrissa was quickly going into hysterics.
Abbastus places a hand on his wife’s shoulder. His brown eyes met with her grey eyes in sadness. Their gaze broke as Matrissa looked at her daughter’s unconscious figure once more, praying to the Spirits once more for her to wake up. Castor sat at the foot of the bed, staring at his younger sister.
“Please wake up,” he said quietly, holding her hand.
This made Matrissa sob into her husband’s shoulder.
“There is, however,” the doctor said, trying to get the family’s attention once more, “one thing that I find very strange about all of this.”
“What’s that?” Abbastus asked.
“Normally, in this situation, a person would grow weaker as time goes on.”
“That makes sense.”
“For some reason, your daughter seems to be getting stronger.”
“What do you mean?”
“Well, when people are in a coma, they become thin from lack of food and their breathing usually slows. Your daughter seems to have lost no weight at all, even though she hasn’t eaten or drank anything in at least one week and her breathing is perfectly fine. Also, coma patients do respond to reflex treatments, but they’re slowed and slightly hesitant. Kyra responds as soon as I do it and strongly too. This is definitely unusual…” the doctor trailed off.
Suddenly, a groaning sound came from Kyra’s bed. Everyone in the room stared in shock as the young girl squeezed her eyes shut and rolled over to one side. Her cheeks began to turn pink and she began to sweat.
“Is she waking up?” Matrissa asked.
“I think she might be,” the doctor put a hand to Kyra’s forehead. “She’s burning up.”
“Why is she burning up?”
“I’m not sure. I’ve never seen something like this before.”
“What’s her temperature?”
The doctor took out a thermometer and placed it in her mouth. “That’s impossible!”
“What is it?”
“It says her temperature’s over one hundred and twenty degrees and still rising!”
Castor suddenly jerked his hand back. “Ow! She burnt my hand!”
The four of them could only watch in both shock and confusion as the mysterious illness left the young girls body and she sat up and opened her eyes, revealing that her once brown eyes had changed color. They were now a mixture of crimson, dark orange, yellow, white, and small bits of black.
They were now the eyes of the fire Immorticae.