Flash Fiction: Fire & Ash

The Muse.

She was always there, waiting for the appropriate time to make her presence known.

It was late.

Scrolling through different ideas he had written down, nothing was catching his eye. Nothing was “popping” out at him. The writer got up from his laptop and grabbed a cold bottle of water from the fridge and walked back to his point of origin. As he sat, she came in through the kitchen. Delicate, bare feet on a hardwood floor, she moved phantom-like towards the Writer. At first, she placed her hands on his shoulders, slowly moving forward, she embraced him from behind, cradling her head on one of his shoulders. Breathing in unison with him, she stroked his shoulders and then turned her face to whisper in his ear.

Enchantment. Inspiration. Something small to get him writing.

Amuse me…

Make me think, make me laugh, make me cry or make me wonder, I don’t care…

Write for me…

A small spark in his mind, a snap shot of a scene… his fingers found the keyboard and began to write…

Over plains and mountains, over the course of days, weeks and months, two creatures had been moving, unknowingly, ever closer towards a great, sacred forest.

A mutually shared destination, drawn, called forth by something inexplicable.

After continuing their journey from opposite sides of the forest, the creatures at last approached a large clearing in the middle of the sacred forest. Both creeping cautiously, curiously towards it. There, from the edges of the clearing they could barely make out outline of the other. They froze. Watching, studying. As if on cue, they each took a step into the clearing, getting a better view of the other.

Similar, yet different. Curious.

The clearing was warm and inviting. An energy was palpable and emanating from within it. The same energy that had been calling them from distant lands.

The sun began to set and they continued to watched one another, letting the time pass, feeling the currents of energy in this place. As the cool of the night met the remaining heat of the summer’s day, a low mist begun to form in the clearing.

Once night fell completely, the moon illuminated the clearing and the creatures on opposite ends. They began to circle one another on the edge of the clearing, slowly drawing ever closer to the other in a subtly, in an ever shrinking spiral.

As they drew closer, it became a flirtatious dance. Back and forth, sometimes changing direction. When the creatures backed away in their dance, they felt compelled to come back. Magnetic. The energy in the clearing became more palpable, more intense with each passing moment. They felt a heat rising within themselves with every step. Their chests began to glow; a fire within. It became clear that it was the fire that had been drawing them, calling them to this place, not the energy from the place itself.

A divine appointment. A fated encounter.

Within meters of each other, fire sparked and poured from their limbs, floating through the air, dancing around the other and their own fire, ultimately combining into a tiny cyclone of flame in the center. With each step closer, the fire poured faster from their limbs, in turn making the cyclone expand larger and larger, it’s wall closing in on the creatures.

The fire felt good to them, it had a pain attached to it, the kind of pain like the release from a long held restraint, or a large thorn finally pulled from the flesh. The ground burned around them. They were somehow made for this, destined for this. At one point in their dance of fire, they passed through the walls of the cyclone meeting each other in the eye of the storm.

The fire stripped them of everything, their bodies glowing with energy and fire. As their bodies touched, the cyclone exploded with energy. A fire storm as high and wide as the clearing itself, consuming everything within.

Intertwining. Consummating.

Their bodies catching fire, burning brighter and brighter.

Ecstasy. Torment. Pleasure. Pain.



In one blinding moment of fire and energy, they became one form and fell to the ground: cinders and ash. The fire died and the moon shone brilliantly over the scorched clearing; a calm, quiet settling over the entire forest. A faint glow from the cinders complimented the illumination of the moon. When dawn came, a mound of crystalline ash lay where the two creatures were last seen, sacred remnants of the night before. Hardening slowly as the day moved on.

It seemed as if hundreds of dawns and dusks came and went; the passing of the sun and phases of the moon shot across the sky like meteors. The sun, rain, wind, snow – pleasant and terrible weather – all passed over and the crystallized ash remained. The grasses grew back in their natural course from the outer edges of the clearing to the center, seemingly in patterns of the dance.

And then one day, as the rays of the rising sun crept slowly over the clearing, as shadow moved away from the crystallized ash and light began to creep upon it, a small glow could be seen coming from within.

It began to shutter and crack, light pouring forth from it. As the sun shone fully upon it, the shell began to crumble and fall away from a form underneath. A glowing light, like the embers of a fire could be seem from the form, smoke and steam rose from it.

Slowly, the form became two.




Very different yet, very much the same.

The creatures rose from the crumbling crystalline shell. Shaking off the remaining debris. Brilliantly revived and renewed.

They looked at each other. Knowing. Recognizing… yet meeting for the first time, all over again. They nuzzled each other in their new forms. Instinctually, they left the clearing and disappeared into the sacred forest.

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