A/N: This is the edited version of chapter one. I hope it's better than the last version. It's definitely longer, that's for sure. For those of you that are new to my story, welcome to The Destiny of Fire's Song! It is currently under construction from chapters one to 20. Therefore, if you read the next 20 chapters and see how short they are, that's because they were published over 6 months ago, when I wasn't as good at writing long chapters. Soooo . . . yeah. Read and review, please! Comments, questions, and constructive criticism are welcome, flames never.
Disclaimer: I don't own anything but Alexandra and her parents. Ooh, it's a butterfly! :D
"Don't you just love days like today?" I heard my mother ask.
"Of course. Clear skies, blooming flowers, and a picnic with you and my lovely daughter," my father said, ruffling my dark hair.
I laughed and took another bite of my sandwich. "Can you tell me about Ravenwood again, Daddy?" I asked.
"Don't talk with your mouth full, and of course I can." He closed his eyes for a minute, trying to remember how the story began. "In another world of the Spiral, there is a place called
Wizard City. In it is the greatest school of magic in the Spiral."
"Patrick, you're making it boring again! Seven year old girls like interesting stories, not long, boring lectures. Let me tell it." Alyssa Firesong told the story much better, painting pictures in my mind of beautiful waterfalls, green meadows, majestic trees, and best of all, hundreds upon hundreds of brightly colored flowers. I stared at her, enthralled by her story. I usually just heard my dad tell it; to hear it from my mother was a rare treat. "When you're 11, we will bring you to the Basilica, home to the Spiral Door, and we'll bring you to Ravenwood, where you'll begin your training as a wizard."
"As a Theurgist, you mean, Alyssa. And Fire will be your secondary school, Alexandra."
"Patrick, let her develop her own interests. What if she doesn't want to be a Theurgist? What if she wants to learn a different school?"
"She would be shaming our family by not doing as her father wishes."
"Don't be so harsh; Alex is only seven. She can choose her school when she's old enough to enter Ravenwood. Now, it looks a bit stormy out. We should head back soon. Hurry up and finish your lunch, Alex." We tried to enjoy the rest of our picnic, but tension had built too high.
My future magic school was often a heated debate between my parents. My father wanted my to become a Theurgist with fire as a secondary school, and my mother said that I should choose what I wanted to be. I just sat and listened in silence whenever they had an argument; I would do as my mother said and not decide until I was 11. We walked back to our home about six minutes later. I was the first one to the door of Number Eight, Redflame Street, the Forum. It was a small, two story house, made of red bricks. The roof was made of orange tiles, and the door was black. Just above my head was the knocker, which was gold and shaped like a dragon curled around itself. I could see that we'd left a window open, and the crimson curtains were blowing out from it. The corner of one caught on the white shutters and tore.
"Here's the key. Want to open it, Alex?" I nodded and took the key from my mother. I reached up and fitted it into the lock, pulled on the door a little, and turned the key as hard as I could. It clicked.
"I did it!"
"Yes, you did! Patrick, Alex unlocked the house all by herself!"
"Nice job, Alex!" He smiled as I pushed the door open. We entered, leaving the picnic basket by the door. I was the only one that saw the shadow pass over our house . . .
"Alex, want to come with me to get the mail?" My mother called, putting her coat on.
"Put your jacket on; it looks like rain."
"Okay." I pulled on my rain jacket and tugged the hood over my black hair.
"We'll be back later, Patrick! We're going to get the mail!"
"Okay! Don't stay out too long; it's very dark out there!"
"I'm aware!" Muttering to herself, she pulled her own hood up, tucked her light brown hair under it, and opened the door. I silently followed her out into the street.
We walked to the post office in silence. I could tell that she was upset about something, but I didn't dare ask what it was. My mom opened our mailbox with the key, took out the letter inside it, and closed the box.
"Come on, Alex. Let's go," she said briskly, taking my hand. I studied her light gray eyes carefully, trying to determine why she was upset. She caught me staring, and I quickly looked away.
We were in sight of our home when disaster struck. The same shadow as before passed over us, making the dark, ominous clouds seem friendly.
"Mommy . . . ?" I whispered.
"Shh. I don't know what's going on. Just stay here." She pushed me into a door frame and started towards the house. I waited in the silence, completely bewildered, trying to figure out why my mother had just left me there. Soon enough, I knew.
When I looked up into the sky, I saw a rain of . . . something. There were big shadows falling towards Earth. Soon, the shadows became rocks, and then fireballs. I knew what the rain of fiery rocks was: an asteroid shower. I had learned about them in school. They were deadly, but thankfully didn't happen often. There was an asteroid drill once a month, just in case of an emergency. We went down into the basement and sat in the sturdiest place. This time, there were no teachers and calm announcements telling us what to do. There was no warm, inviting basement and groups of students just as bored as me. This was the real thing, and I was on my own. I decided that the safest thing to do would be to stay where I was. A basement was best, the teachers had said, but anywhere strong and stable would do. I made myself as small as possible in the door frame and watched as the first asteroids slammed into the street.
It was nothing like I'd expected; the ground shook like a herd of helephants were charging down the street. Fires were catching in every available spot, including my jeans and coat. I screamed and patted at them, and eventually fell to the ground and started rolling around. Thank goodness for fire safety assemblies. When the fires in my clothes were out, I crawled back to the door frame and sat there, crying silently and praying that my mother would come back. She had to save me. I knew she would. She never broke her promises and always kept me safe.
It was over. I had sat in that doorway, crying and shaking in fear, for five hours, and the asteroids had finally stopped falling. I peeled my eyes open-they had stuck shut from the smoke and tears- and looked around at the street-or what remained of it. There was destruction everywhere. Every house had been hit, leaving only pieces standing. That included the building I had sheltered in front of. The entire door frame was gone; I was surrounded in three massive boulders. It had been a miracle I hadn't been hit. I slowly stood, supporting myself by putting a hand on the boulder. I quickly withdrew my hand-the rock was smoking hot. I approached the spot where my house had stood. There was nothing. Nothing but a huge crater and some black glass.
"Hello?" I called. My voice was raspy and hoarse from the smoke, and quiet, too, but the words sounded loud in the silent street.
"Alex?" Someone was calling my name. I turned. Behind me stood . . . someone. It was a man in ragged, sooty robes. His hair was streaked with ashes, and his face had been blackened by the smoke. I recognized his voice, though . . . "It's me, your dad."
"Daddy?" I whispered. He nodded. I ran forwards and threw my arms around him."Daddy, what happened? Mommy disappeared and the asteroids started falling and the house is gone and I can't find Mommy and . . . "
"Shh, it's okay. We'll find her. Come with me; I know how to find her." He took my hand and led me away.
I read the words over the door slowly: "Forum . . . Missing . . . Persons . . . Bur-bur-"
"Bureau. The people who work here will help us find your mom."
"Okay." I whispered. We entered the large stone building.
The lady sitting behind the desk looked up. "Can I help you?"
"Yes. We were victims of the asteroid shower, and we're looking for someone."
"Hmm . . . I'm sorry, sir, but she's been reported dead. Someone found her body under an asteroid." I stared at her in shock. My mommy? Dead? No. That couldn't be true. It must have been someone else. "This was turned in to us." She handed my father something small. It was a reddish ring with a gold stone in the center. On the inside of it was carved a word: Firesong. My mother's wedding ring.
"No . . . she's . . ."
"Dead. I'm very sorry, sir. If you go to the Natural Disaster Recovery building, they can help you recover from your losses." The sentence sounded stupid, and I made sure she knew it.
"We don't want help recovering from our losses! We want her back! I want my mommy back! Your stupid recovery building won't do anything but tell us, 'Oh, we're sorry that your mommy's dead, here, have some money to rebuild your house!' It won't help!" I screamed in
anger. Everyone in the room stared at me.
"Alex, stop making a scene like a Necromancer and control yourself," my father hissed.
"No! I won't! You're being calm and sad, I'm being angry and sad! I'm allowed to, Dragonspyre is a free world!" I yelled. I turned and ran from the building. I ran as far as I could get from that "Missing Persons Bureau" and hid, sobbing. After sitting there for a while, I realized something: my mother was dead. She wasn't coming back. I would never see her again, never hear her again, never touch her again. I would never hear her tell the story of Ravenwood. She would never pull me close and hug me, and I would never smell her sweet perfume. She was gone. Slowly, I dried my tears from my silver eyes. I brushed the ashes from my hair and pulled it back into a ponytail. I stood and dusted the smoke and dirt off my clothes, and I slowly walked back to the Missing Persons Bureau. My father was standing outside. I approached him slowly, holding my head high and keeping my stare level.
"Alex! I thought . . ."
"You thought I had run away for good. I acted like a child, Daddy. I was stupid to be so angry. She's gone; I have to accept it. I apologize for being so immature, and from now on, I will try to do better," I said frostily. He stared at me, completely shocked. "Now, let's go to that Natural Disaster Recovery place. They can help us; we can rebuild our house, go back to the way things were, and survive without her." I easily cast aside my grief like I thought a Theurgist would do. I had no idea that casting aside grief was not at all the trait of a Theurgist . . .
ONE YEAR LATER
"Dad, I'm home," I called, slamming the door shut. I had dropped the "Daddy" and just started calling him "Dad" about a month after the asteroid shower. One extra syllable, one extra second wasted on speaking. Each second I wasted speaking could be used to do something worthwhile. "Dad?" There was no answer. "Hello, anyone home?" I peeked into his study, where he normally sat, working on his accounting job. It was empty. I ran upstairs and looked in his room. Empty. I went to the kitchen. Empty. I was about to leave when I saw something on the table: an envelope with a red dragon. My father's seal. I didn't like snooping, but I picked up the letter anyways. When I turned it over, I saw my name written in Patrick Firesong's neat handwriting. I tore open the envelope and pulled out a letter.
I am sorry to leave with no warning, but I have been given a job offer somewhere else in Dragonspyre. I had to leave immediately. The job provides a home for me, but it is too small to share with you. I'm sorry. I won't be back, and don't try to find me. You're a smart, brave girl; you can survive on your own. If it comes to such a situation that you can't make do alone, go to the orphanage in the Crucible. They will care for you. Once you turn 11, go to the Basilica and travel to Ravenwood. Become a Theurgist-Pyromancer like I have wished for you to do, and then you will be able to live in Ravenwood until you're an adult. Someday, perhaps, you can return to this house. Maybe I'll be there. Maybe.
-Your father, Patrick Firesong
Abandoned. That's what I was. Abandoned.
A/N: Sheesh,this is my longest chapter yet! It went from under 600 words to 2,419! You've got to admit that's pretty impressive. So, did you like the first version better, or the second version? I think I know the answer to that :)