The Fire Within - Heidi Cooper

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

Chapter 11 (v.1) - Chapter Eleven

Submitted: April 27, 2017

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Comments: 1

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Submitted: April 27, 2017

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Chapter Eleven

 

 

 

Mum looked over at Dad while she was still mid-air.

 

He had this look somewhere between shock and absolute awe etched onto his face. “Honey…that is all Emilie.”

 

I suddenly faltered as I looked towards Dad and Mum went crashing to the ground. Dad must have anticipated it because he rolled over and managed to soften my mother’s fall.

 

“What do you mean it was all me….Dad??”

 

“Em…” he said, rubbing the back of his neck and looking to the ground for a moment – perhaps for answers – “I mean I had stopped channelling. You kept the spell going by yourself, entirely by yourself.”

 

“How can that be, David?” She looked at my father, and then back to me. The look of shock never leaving her face.

 

“Mum…y - your hair…”

 

“Honey…” Dad gasped.

 

Mum suddenly looked older against the natural light flooding in through the opened curtains. She clambered to her feet and half walked, half ran to an antique-looking mirror hanging on a nearby wall and stared at her reflection. Several strands of her once brown hair had turned silvery-white.

 

Dad scrambled after Mum and put his hands on her shoulders in an effort to comfort her.

 

“I’m okay,” Mum said. “This is what magic does. Nothing a dye won’t fix.” She tried to laugh it off but I could tell she was scared.

 

“It has never done this to you though love,” replied Dad. “Only the strongest magic has the power to do this with such an easy spell. Or – “

 

“No. It couldn’t be. Y - You really think she is a – “

 

“Syphoner?” said Dad, completing Mum’s sentence. “An Elemental Syphoner…I’ve never come across one before in my 324 years.”

 

“This will make her a very coveted target David. We need to be careful more now than ever before. No one can find out about this. No one.”

 

“Uh, hello?!” I yelled, “I’m still right here. Right here listening to everything you’re saying. Syphoner….324 years old?! What the flying fuck is going on?!”

 

“Honey…language…”
 

“Dad, please don’t treat me like I am five. Tell me what is going on! I’m almost eighteen, in my senior year of high school – going to College next year and now you spring this all on me?!”

 

“Sweetheart…” Mum turned away from the mirror and shot a concerned look in my direction.

 

“I know. I know. For my protection. For our protection. But don’t you think I had the right to know? Didn’t you once consider it may be more dangerous for me to find out on my own - that I would find out on my own? At least if you’d have told me sooner I could have learnt that I wasn’t just a freak this whole time. Wait – my dreams…does that mean – “

 

“Yes. Honey. It is not uncommon for a witch to start having visions when they are about to come of age. This is when the potential of their full power in unlocked. At eighteen years old witches transcend and their power is heightened.”

 

“Then why did you tell me that my dreams were silly? That they didn’t mean anything. Why did you keep brushing me off?!”

 

“Em – “

 

“Dad, please don’t act concerned about the lies now. I have been lied to my entire life!”

 

I rose to my feet and hurtled out of the lounge room. My Dad tried to reach out to me as I passed him but I yanked my arm away. I saw the hurt look in his eyes and chose to ignore it. I flew up the staircase two steps at a time; tears welled up in my eyes as my whole world came crashing down around me.

 

Time seemed to slow down. Everything around me felt stranger. My whole life was one big lie. I knew my parents were trying to protect me but lying to me all these years? Who was I? I just didn’t know anymore. Magic. My family were witches. I was a witch….and a powerful one? A syphoner? Dad was 324 years old? How old was Mum? Ugh…this all seemed so unreal. How do I keep going to school? How do I lie to my friends? And yet if I told anyone the truth it could put them in real danger.

 

I realized in that moment that no matter how bitter I felt about the fact that I was lied to I was going to need my parents help more than ever to keep this under wraps. My parents were the only ones who knew – who could know – about who and what I was. In that moment I hadn’t felt so utterly alone. I loved my parents, but how can you honestly trust those who have lied to you for so long. Even if they did it with good intentions…

 

I wiped the tears from my eyes with a corner of my duvet and sighed. I still had so many unanswered questions and my parents were the only ones who could answer them. I sucked in a breath and made the inevitable journey downstairs where I knew my parents would be waiting for me.

 

As I rounded towards the staircase I could already smell my Dad cooking hamburgers. Trust him. He always made me my favourite food when I was upset. A peace offering this time perhaps?

 

“Sweetheart!” he said a little too eagerly when he saw me enter the kitchen.

 

“Hi, Dad…” I responded. “I just needed some time to sort through some things…but as it turns out I can’t sort through them alone – and since you and Mum are the only ones who really know anything about me...”

 

Dad flipped over the homemade meat patties and looked at me as he said, “I know honey. And we are sorry. Truly. We really thought we were doing the right thing. I guess we didn’t ever stop to think about how not knowing who you really were might affect you. We were just so scared of you getting hurt – or worse.”

 

“I know Dad. I - It just…sucks…you know?” Dad looked at me with a sympathetic look. “I don’t even know who I am anymore…”

 

“You are still Emilie; the beautiful little girl that I held in my arms for the first time almost eighteen years ago. Gorgeous brown hair and bright blue eyes – like sapphires. You are intelligent, funny and compassionate. None of that has changed. You just have an added feature that not many people possess.”

 

“You mean my magical ju-ju.”

 

Dad chuckled. “Well if that’s what you want to call it…yes.”

 

“Your magical ju-ju is a huge part of you but it isn’t all of what makes you who you are,” said Mum as she entered the kitchen. “There is more to it than that.”

 

My Mum took my hands and rubbed the tops of them with her thumbs. “You were always a very special girl, Emilie. Even more special with magical powers; your magical powers are unlike any other I have ever witnessed. It doesn’t happen often, but once every few thousand years a powerful witch such as you is born into a coven.”

 

“A syphoner…?”

 

“Yes and no. Not just a syphoner. An elemental syphoner.” Mum said. “Not just that…but I felt you use your magic without using any elements around you. You drew power from me but at the same time I felt the power within you. It is strong, Emilie.”

 

Dad nodded in agreement as he assembled the burgers. He passed a loaded plate to me and my mother and took another for himself. As much as I wanted to hoover my burger I was also eager to find out more about my life, about my parents lives.

 

“324 years old, Dad? How can that be?”

 

“Witches live for a very long time. We are part immortal so we have a much longer life span than humans do. All supernatural folk have lengthier lives. The length of a witches life however, depends on what magic they practice, how they practice and how often. We are also part human, in that we are not invincible and can therefor die.”

 

“How…how old am I? And wait…there are other supernatural beings?”

 

Dad gave me an incredulous look. “Of course there are other beings, but that can be a tale for another time. And you are seventeen, honey. Don’t you think you would have noticed a lot more years go by if you were older?”

 

I blushed at the realisation that my Dad had a very good point. I turned to look at my mother who had a smirk plastered across her face. “How old are you Mum?” The smirk changed to a cringe.

 

“322 years old,” responded Dad. “332 with the grey streak.” My mother grabbed the tea towel beside her and flicked it at Dad playfully. It cracked like a whip and stung my Dad on the upper arm.
 

“Ouch!” cried Dad, trying to stifle a chortle.

 

“Sorry Mum. I didn’t mean to – “

 

“It’s quite alright Emilie. Nothing a hair dye won’t fix.”

 

“Wait. Couldn’t I fix it? Aren’t there spells that undo other spells?

 

My Mother looked at my father. “I am sure it can’t hurt, Cordelia,” he said.

 

“Cordelia. That’s your name? I thought your name was Leah.”

 

“Well, Leah for short. Just like we call you Em, instead of Emilie.”

 

“Don’t forget Em, when we were born it was almost three centuries ago and names now are so very different compared to back then. So we alter them to suit the changing times.”

 

“So – “

 

“No. My real name is David. It was all the rage back in the eighteenth century. I guess some things don’t die.”

 

“Wait! How old does – did that make Grandma? When she passed away I mean?”

 

“Three hundred and ninety seven years old. Give or take.”

 

“Wow…” I said, stunned.

 

“I understand how overwhelming this must be for you, Em. We promise to be completely truthful from now on. We are sure you have some questions that you wish to ask us?”

 

I sat in silence for a moment. My brain was bursting with questions – rolling around, jumping over one another – fighting to be the next one out of my mouth. Sifting through seventeen years’ worth of unanswered questions would take a while.

 

“Maybe it would be easier for us to tell you everything. Perhaps it’s time to introduce you to the skeletons in our closet.” My mother said, snapping me out of my reverie.

 

This was it. The moment the person I knew changed forever. The moment the old me ceased to exist. My parents were about to unleash a shit storm of knowledge on me that would rival an F5 tornado. I downed the last of my burger and braced myself.



© Copyright 2018 H D Cooper. All rights reserved.

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