White Fire 5.12 – Erik

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When you’re in love, a corpse-laden cavern becomes a bed of lily flowers.

— ERIK ITO, TO HANNA

Something vital snapped inside of Erik. Hanna. Hanna had been raped, fuck them all! His soul burned, red-hot magma boiled in his marrow. The hurt reminded him of how he felt when his mother died. This could not be happening, not to him. Not again.

Erik howled, batting aside memories with the power to shatter nations, smashing them to dust with the strength of his fury. Hatred beyond knowing churned within him as waves of liquid fire splashed onto jagged shores with every twist of his serpentine frame. He burned on the outside and in, melting, changing into something else entirely. Something more humanoid, with scales and hands. All the while, sinking deeper into the fiery hell. Continue reading “White Fire 5.12 – Erik”

White Fire 5.11 – Erik

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Love is the primary comfort of dreamers, whether, in summer or winter, it burns brighter than any fire.

— ANCIENT PROVERB

Beyond the warmth and the darkness, there was nothing.

The heat came from within and sometimes from without as soft points of contact that briefly moved across the darkness. Warm, and painful. He had started using the pain to estimate the passing of time as his consciousness grew. The touches always came at the same interval, or at least they seemed to. It was hard to tell. His thoughts were fragmented and limited to the awareness of the warmth and the darkness.

An unknown amount of intervals later, so Continue reading “White Fire 5.11 – Erik”

White Fire 5.10 – Erik

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All are equal in death.

— ANCIENT PROVERB

Erik howled, a dwindling sound of rage that echoed through the cavern as his dragon flesh bubbled and warped, shrinking in size with each passing moment until he collapsed to his knees, once again in human form. Bruised lungs expanded with ragged breaths, and arms shook while sweat dampened the back of his neck. Too close. That had been too close. He had almost lost himself to the bottomless pit of hunger. If not for Patrick . . . if not for. . . .

Hauling himself to his feet, Erik dabbed at the dirt on his robe and surveyed the destruction he had wrought with a sense of awe twisting the pit of his stomach. Deep grooves scarred the land, joining pools of green into lakes of fire. Dead Dökk sat in piles like wheat at harvest, next to infernos that once had been Vatn Björns. One such eight-legged beast lay prone in front of him, yet instead of flames, monstrous teeth had devoured its carcass. The enticing aroma of cooked and uncooked meat caused him to grunt in disgust at the sicking need that filled him to the brim. Continue reading “White Fire 5.10 – Erik”

White Fire 5.09 – Hanna

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We suffer as you suffer. Maybe not always in the same way, but we suffer.

— HANNA ITO, TO ERIK

Hanna was not sure how she remained conscious this long. Her body stung from the tumble down the tunnel and the plunge into the green pool. The gash on her forehead throbbed in concert with her slowing heartbeat, and her lungs burned from lack of oxygen. Surrounded by the glowing fluid, her awareness drifted. There could not be more than a moment or two of life left in her. The battle was over; she had lost, and Ypse had won.

Erik, I’m sorry. I tried. Continue reading “White Fire 5.09 – Hanna”

White Fire 5.08 – Erik

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All I know is forward.

— ERIK ITO, TO HANNA

Erik took a firm grip of his emotions, back straight, head low, and his green eyes blazed. Coldly, he went over his two choices: wait until he could ensnare more prana or rush into the unknown.

Though he did not want to, he saw the logic in Patrick’s advice. Under different circumstances, he might have even agreed with the Lightbender’s words. If it was anyone else but Hanna in danger, his body would not be screaming for him to act.

Wait or go? Those were the only two options. Continue reading “White Fire 5.08 – Erik”

White Fire 5.07 – Erik

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Every choice you make opens and closes a door.

— ANCIENT PROVERB

Stones rattled, and walls shook as the deep boom of Erik’s dragon voice reverberated through the chamber, vibrating into flesh, bone, rock. It was as if a bottomless cavern had suddenly been given the ability to speak. Ypse grimaced, eye flashing, hands jumping to cover his ears.

Kill him, Asbjörn encouraged. Kill them all! Continue reading “White Fire 5.07 – Erik”

White Fire 5.06 – Erik

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Forgive me. Forgive me!

— ERIK ITO, TO HANNA

Silence hung about the body littered battlefield, only broken by the gasps and grunts of the dying.

“WHAT’S MY NAME?” Erik shouted.

A heartbeat of more quiet, and then the night exploded with cries of “Erik Ito.” Like rolling thunder, the yells cascaded through the air, wretched from the throat of almost every soldier. Men who had only seconds before been fighting for their lives, now seemed blind to their enemies, which in some cases they stood shoulder-to-shoulder with. Continue reading “White Fire 5.06 – Erik”