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stargate, DanielJackson

Week 19, Title: Shadows only live when given birth by light

Posted on 2014.08.26 at 23:12
Tags: ,

Jeremy walks hesitantly towards the campfire; it’s the only one he can see so it must be the meeting place. Except there’s only one guy there and he’s anxious to approach in case it’s just some stranger. Then, drawing nearer, he sees the fire and knows he’s in the right place. The flames aren’t upon a pile of sticks but instead are floating an inch off the ground. He approaches with increased surety, still a little jittery with nerves but his excitement more than compensates.

“Hi,” he says, attracting the other’s attention.

“Hey, I’m Potts.”

“Nice to meet you. Jeremy,” he replies, offering his hand.

Potts’ hand slides lazily over his own as he says, “So you’re the new fire-starter. You’re early; the others will be here soon. Then your trial begins.”

“Huh?” Jeremy asks, pondering whether it’s a joke or if there’ll be a hazing of some sort.

“Oh, you don’t know, sit down and I’ll tell you the tale.”

Trying not to make his wimp-like insect avoidance too obvious, Jeremy carefully sits on the log.

Potts stares into the fire and the flames enlarge and contort into a scene of a house and two people.


Long ago there was a woman named Cassandra who lay with a man of smoke and sulphur, many thought him a demon, but he soon disappeared and so was forgotten. But as the months drew on Cassandra’s belly swelled and new life grew within her; many thought she carried a demon child. She refused to take heed of any advisors, seers or priests who found their way to her door. Instead she cherished the babe even as he proved to have some rather inhuman talents.

The child was named Joseph. He was a young boy of six when he wielded his first fire, it was wild and out of control. Much damage was done. Some of those who had loved him turned against him. His mother struggled with keeping them both safe from the fires, with helping her son, with assuring him she loved him still. He cried at this power he couldn’t stomach, this uncontrollable force.

His mother helped him tame his powers and eventually they were not such a danger.

The years went on and he grew into a young man, plagued by the powers and people around him. He still received much hatred from those in his village, many tried to harm him and his mother (some out of fear, some with the purposeful intent to push him to evil and thus be proven right). Many miscreants wished him to champion their armies. Though dogged so constantly through his life, he was nourished by the love and support of his mother and family and thus remained steadfast and pure of heart. But nonetheless the actions of others caused a spark of darkness to be kindled within him.

Perhaps suspicious of his continuing goodness, perhaps seeing the beginnings of darkness, the villagers began hunting him. Those who tried to help him were tied to stakes and set alight. A symbolic death; though he could create fire he could not halt the flames that burned them. At every turn the darkness fostered within him grew greater. Until he was a creature of hatred itself.

He began his revenge, burning all those who had harmed him. But that was not enough. Over the ensuing decades he sired many fire-creatures, secretly littering them across the world, and thus our kind was born.

At his last breath he told of the curse he had placed on the world that had twisted and tainted him so, so that it in turn would be twisted and tainted. That one fire-creature would begin pure as he had and grow darker, bound by fate to burn the world.


“I see you’re already scaring the newbie, putting your ridiculous stories in his head,” a tall girl says, approaching them with a guy in tow.

“Nah, I’m just letting the kid know what he’s truly in for. This is Jeremy,” Potts says, “Jeremy, this is Kanthan and Ellie.”

“Kanthan?” Jeremy asks, checking his pronunciation as he shakes the guy’s hand. Kanthan nods.  

Ellie has already taken a seat on an opposite log and waves to him in lieu of a handshake. Jeremy raises his own hand in response.

“I almost don’t want to tell him the truth. Reality is kind of a let-down,” Kanthan says.

Ellie rolls her eyes and pulls out a cigarette. Jeremy watches in awe as the end begins to glow spontaneously; he doesn’t think he’ll ever be that quick.

She takes a slow drag before speaking, “Here’s the dealio; you don’t have to worry about your powers going out of control and hurting someone or doing  any damage, it’s impossible- the amount of concentration and focus that takes; it never happens by accident. Most of those who hated us or were even aware of us are long gone and The Order takes care of any stragglers very efficiently. These days, there’s not much we can do that a good weapons system can’t and water elementals are much better than fire elementals at taking down rogue fire-starters or fires, so any delusions of a superhero gig are also out. Bright side, you basically get to have a normal life with the ability to do really cool party tricks.” 

“Oh,” Jeremy says, frowning slightly.

“Or maybe that’s just what we want you to think.”


bleodswean at 2014-08-27 16:48 (UTC) (Link)
I love how skilled you are at complete world building in compact spaces. The mythos you use here is just wonderful and very visual. You certainly left me wanting more!
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-27 17:15 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you so much, so glad it left you wanting more :)
uncawes at 2014-08-27 21:59 (UTC) (Link)
There's a huge hint here that Jeremy might be that pure fire creature.
I'm looking forward to the next chapter in this story
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-28 06:39 (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, that's what I was going for ;).

Thank you :)
Jemima Pauler
jem0000000 at 2014-08-28 04:16 (UTC) (Link)
Dun dun dun...! :) Sounds like he'd do just as well finding a spot to build a fire where it's not likely to get out of control, and seeing how difficult it is to light.
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-28 06:41 (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I think at this point he has no idea how powerful he could be. :)
Jemima Pauler
jem0000000 at 2014-09-01 08:15 (UTC) (Link)
And his "teachers" certainly aren't helping, lol. :)
rayaso at 2014-08-28 15:18 (UTC) (Link)
I am also waiting for the next entry. I loved the myth, which may not be true. Still, Ellie's version has it's perks: doing cool party tricks is not to be taken lightly.
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-28 15:42 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :).
A Karmic Sandbox
karmasoup at 2014-08-29 03:23 (UTC) (Link)
I dig this. I feel like it has the potential for being part of a bigger world with super powered elementals I'd like to see more of. Well done!
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-29 06:15 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
Teo Says
eternal_ot at 2014-08-29 10:15 (UTC) (Link)
Interesting set up... I loved the back story...and now like others I am waiting for more...Good work!
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-29 13:21 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
adoptedwriter at 2014-08-29 15:50 (UTC) (Link)
Agreed with other readers....I'm looking forward to more! AW
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-29 16:12 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
The Coalition For Disturbing Metaphors
halfshellvenus at 2014-08-29 23:49 (UTC) (Link)
I love the tragic myth in the middle section, and then the let-down in the finale... followed by that sneaky open question. ;)
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-30 06:42 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
whipchick at 2014-08-30 19:40 (UTC) (Link)
Ooo, lots of potential for Jeremy to come!
swirlsofblue at 2014-08-30 19:40 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you :)
shimmerdream at 2014-08-31 23:38 (UTC) (Link)
This is great - it's like the prologue of a book and I want to find out what happens next.
swirlsofblue at 2014-09-01 05:43 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you liked it :)
Laura, aka "Ro Arwen"
roina_arwen at 2014-09-01 05:23 (UTC) (Link)
Very intriguing premise - I look forward to reading more. :)
swirlsofblue at 2014-09-01 05:44 (UTC) (Link)
Thank you, glad you found it intriguing :)
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