Hello lovely people!!! I have been so busy with my actual book-writing, I haven’t had much time to write anything else. But, I do have this small, short story I decided to share with you.
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Beat the fire. Defeat the fire. Master the fire. Gain the fire.
These words ring in my head, bringing a bit of cold to my overheating body.

Tossing a look at my surroundings, I take in everything. The lava, the ash, the burning sand. This inferno has been my home for three days.

Time is running out.

I wipe the sweat off my forehead, looking up at the crack of Sky. There’s hardly any daylight in this Abyss- only the light provided by the molten rock.

Mama said that she has seen dozens of Fire Girls enter this Abyss as an offer to the gods, only a few returning. None have come out unscathed.

I see what she means now. I have burn marks all over, and the small amount of burn ointment that they gave me ran out yesterday. The bit of armor they gave me has etch marks from the burns I received, and I’ve lost an inch of hair to the charring fire.

If I don’t get out by sunset… it’s all over.

“Alright, Yaretzi,” I croak. “Time to go.”

Swinging my bow over my shoulder, I continue on the Path of Inferno.

I don’t know how long I walk. I’m sort of in this dark, hazy dream. My water lowers by the minute. Heated lava moves around me. Lava fleas buzz around my head. There’s a ringing in my ear.

At last, I can’t take it anymore. I collapse on the heated sand and close my eyes.

           Just for a minute, I think.

When I awake, the sun is setting. There’s a large pounding in my head and I feel nauseous, even though I haven’t eaten anything since I left the Sky.

I cannot move on. I don’t have enough time. So do I give up?

They want a hero, I tell myself. Someone they can look …up to.

Cocking my head, I crouch on the ground. I take out my bow and arrow, stringing the arrow and aiming it at the soft rock.

Taking my aim, I delve the four arrows into the soft rock. A ladder up to the Earth and Sky.

The sun above me has almost faded. Swallowing the hollow sandpaper in my mouth, I drop my bow on the ground and make a running jump. Gripping the first steel arrow, I swing my body up to the next.

At last, all I have to do is swing myself up to the top of the Abyss. I jump for it.

My hand grips the cool Earth of the Sky. But it’s slipping and, oh, I’m not going to make it!

Then there is a hand on top of mine. A hand that seems a thousand times stronger than mine.

Zolin holds onto my hand and pulls me up until my feet touch the cool Earth. A stifling wind moves through my hair, and a slight drizzle is pouring from the Sky.

I collapse into his arms.

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