May 13th, 20XX
I’ve had weird dreams before. Ones that made me question reality and some that made me wake up in a cold sweat, but I’ve never once had a dream where a man told me I shouldn’t be alive.
“Excuse me?” I asked the man, completely baffled. The man looks at me in surprise, his eyes wide and his mouth open in an ‘o’ shape. He looked like he couldn’t believe what was right in front of him, and it annoyed me.
The man’s wearing a loose red jacket with white flames decorating the bottom of it. He had a black shirt underneath the jacket and black pants. His hair was black and his eyes were a bright red that seemed to almost glow and flicker. As I looked at him, he looked so super familiar, then it hit me. He had the same face as me with the only the eyes being different. His skin was darker, more a brown, compared to my tan.
While I was thinking about how similar we looked, he finally spoke up, his tone sounding just as shocked as his face looked.
“You shouldn’t be alive, but you are.” He took a step towards me, his face morphing into confusion, his voice taking the same tone. “How? Why haven’t They appeared yet? Have you already escaped Their clutches?” With each question asked, I got more and more confused and more and more angry. It got to the point my fists were shaking from the pressure of me clenching them. I glared at the man heatedly, before I interrupted him.
“Who is ‘They’!? Why is it such a big deal?!” I screamed, making him take a step back. I huffed in anger and waited for him to answer. The man seemed to realize that I didn’t know anything, before he calmed down and looked at me, smirking a bit.
“Well, if next time we see each other and you’re still alive, I’ll answer your questions.” The man raised one of his hands and put his fingers in a snapping motion. When I saw that, I felt my skin start to heat up, like I was under the hot sun in the middle of the afternoon, but when he snapped, that’s when it truly started.
With the snapping sound echoing around me, I felt the heat ramp up so high that it felt like pure fire burst from my skin. My blood felt like it was boiling and I collapsed from the pain, screaming. Even with my screaming, I could still hear the man.
“With the power I was born with, and with the power you were born with, I call to your soul and say thus. Release the flames that consume you, allow them to fuel you and protect the others in a fiery show of strength. Become the heat, let the heat guide you. Allow yourself to use the flames to your whim. Now, WAKE!!"
With that final word screamed, my eyes snapped open and I sat up like a bolt of lightning. I looked around for the man, but I only saw my room instead of the White Space. I paused for a moment to collect my thoughts, and realized that I was gasping and my heart was beating as fast as a drum solo. I closed my eyes and tried to calm my heart, and my breathing, and was successful after a few minutes. I opened my eyes once again and checked the clock on my wall to see the time.
The clock read: 8:45. I continued to stare at the clock for a few more seconds, before I was suddenly filled with panic and frustration. “Fuck!” I cursed, throwing the blankets off and I got up, ignoring the fact that I was sweating more then an over heated bear. I scrambled towards my closet, throwing it open and grabbing a black sweater, pulling it on and grabbing a pair of tan colored pants. With that done, I grabbed my phone and backpack and bolted out of my room. I ran into the kitchen and grabbed a banana, barely noticing that my parents weren’t home.
I charged out of my house and down the sidewalk, internally groaning at how far I had to run to get to school. I lived a good thirty minute walk from the school in a relatively good neighborhood, the perks of having a talented and famous brain surgeon as a mother and a damn good dentist as a father, and I always took the bus to school. Sadly, I had missed the bus today, so I had to run to school in the cool morning of May. Yet, and I didn’t notice at the time thanks to the fact that I was panicking, but I was extremely hot and sweating heavily. I probably ignored it, more concerned with getting to school, but I should have noticed that, and maybe I could’ve stopped the disaster that sent the entire domino line crashing.
About halfway to my school, around the main shopping area of my city, I started to feel my skin start to blister. I had taken noticed, but pushed it aside. The pain had started to increase with each step I had taken, going from a small sun burn to the feeling of flames licking my skin. I cursed and tried to push through the pain, but it just got worse and worse. It was ten minutes after I left my house, I was in the middle of the shopping district of my city, and I collapsed on to my knees, drawing the attention of passing people. A few people had come up to check on me, maybe someone called an ambulance, but all their voices became muffled as the pain sky rocketed. Now, instead of the pain being like flames licking my skin, it felt like lava was being poured on my skin, while I was being boiled alive.
Then it got worse.
This is the only way I know how to describe the pain, so please pay attention. I want you to go to one of those old stoves, the ones with metal coils that heated up instead of the electric ones we have nowadays. You there? Good. Now, I want you to pick one of the coils and turn it on max. Wait for the coil to warm up, wait until it turns into a blistering, bright, angry red. Once it’s fully heated up, slam you hand, palm first, on to the coil and hold it there. I want you to feel that coil as it imprints the ring into your hand, feel the way your hand, and mind, scream at you to stop it, feel the extreme pain as your hand burns and melts. Watch as your skin starts to melt around the coil, as your muscles liquidize. Watch it, feel it and become it. Once your hand has completely melted around the coil, rip your hand off in the most gruesome way possible. Now, don’t hesitate, and slammed your other hand on to the coil, let the same process happen, and rip it off the same way you did with your other hand.
Do that to your entire body. That is exactly how I felt.
I had collapsed to my stomach, and I heard someone screaming. The pain made everything dull and impossible to comprehend, but thanks to hindsight, I knew that it was me who was screaming, loud and filled with pain. I don’t know how long I had stayed in agony, maybe only a few minutes, but it had felt like years to me. Each second took a month to pass, each minute a year. When I had finally passed out, I never wanted to wake again. To this day, I wish I hadn’t woken up, if only to never have witnessed the horrors that were awaiting me.
When I woke up, it started with feeling, and boy was it a good feeling. What I felt, all over my body, was like a blanket that had come straight out of the dryer on a cold night, just pure bliss. I loved it. The next came hearing, and my brain, with it just barely waking up as well, couldn’t comprehend what that crackling sound was. It sounded so familiar, yet I couldn’t pinpoint why it had. Then I regained smell, and when I breathed it, I figured out why the crackling sounded so familiar. I smelled smoke.
I snapped my eyes open, and all I saw was fire. I screamed and tried to get to my feet, but there was something on them. In looked down and saw a body, a bald man at that, but with a closer inspecting, I saw that the man shouldn’t have been bald, but had become bald from the fires that had consumed him. I cried out and tried to shove him off me, but it was like shoving a bag of cement. Thanks to him being dead, he felt extremely heavy, and I felt tears form in my eyes.
I had gotten him off me, eventually, but by then, I noticed so many people running around, all of them on fire. I saw many people fall down, only to never move again, overrun with the fires and dying, whether from the smoke or the fires themselves, I wouldn’t ever know. I had thrown my sweater off in a desperate attempt to be rid of the flames that came off, but after I did, I realized quickly that it was pointless.
As I stood up, a person, female, short and, was most likely, cute, but that was before the fire had melted her face, causing her hair to catch fire and making her hysteric. The woman had crashed into me, making me fly backwards into a dead body on fire. I had screamed for all of a few seconds, but I hadn’t felt any kind of burning sensation. I didn’t feel my skin become scarred horribly, or even any slight amount of pain. In fact, I felt perfectly fine, comfortable even. I had quickly shoved that thought away and crawled off the dead body, shivering in disgust.
After that, I started to notice many different things, such as how I didn’t feel over heated, despite being surrounded by meter high flames and screaming people on fire. Also, when a person got too close to me, I waved my hands out of instinct and the flames dispersed from their body, but they were still in shock and ran through more flames. That got my mind whirring and a deep instinct inside me suddenly sprang awake, forcing me to listen and react.
I raised my hand without noticing right away, and then I felt a surge of warmth in my arm. With the surge, the flames all around me seemed to spin and fly into the air, merging into one, giant ball of flames. After a few seconds, all the flames were together, making the burned shopping district visible and putting all the bodies, the one ball of fire descended down from above me and connected with my arm, seemingly being sucked in and becoming one.
As the fires congealed into my arm, I felt the heat from my arm travel down into my chest, where the heat stayed, making me feel comfortable and warm. After a few moments, all the flames were sucked into my body and settled into my core, leaving me alone in the middle of a fire massacre. I dropped my arm, panting, feeling tired, but not overly warm. I glanced around, noticing that there were a team of firefighters rushing towards me, as well as a large amount of policemen with their weapons drawn.
They were yelling at me, the police, to do something, that much I could tell, but I didn’t understand the words, everything was becoming muffled and fuzzy. The corners of my vision started to darken and I felt dizzy. I fell to my hands and knees, feeling incredibly tired all of a sudden. I glanced up, my vision going dark and blurry. The last thing I saw was a group of police and firemen surrounding me, before I fell unconscious.
Worst birthday ever.