The flame flickered above my fingers, like a dancer on a stage. A smile grew across my father’s face.
“Just like that! Concentrate, Gilan. Now, focus on making that fire bigger.” I willed more energy into my hands, and the flames grew. The pencil-thin blaze slowly widened to the width of my palm, emitting a warm and comforting aura. My dad’s smile grew wider as he looked at the flame. “You’re doing it! Keep going!” Trying to get closer to the fire, he leaned forward in his chair.
The sudden motion tore a massive creak from the wooden armchair. The fire blinked away, and I looked up at my dad. His shoulders slumped as he gazed at my hands. “Sorry, I shouldn’t have distracted you.”
He looked at the smile on my face and cracked a grin. “You did it though, didn’t you? Looks like you’ve just got to keep practicing.
It had been three months since I had awoken. I woke up that day and found myself floating almost a meter above my bed, covered in a soft white light. My parents rushed into the room in response to my frightened yell, but their fear quickly became elation when they saw me hovering in the air.
The next three months were filled with training. Both my father and my mother were once hunters, and though they weren’t too eager to let me wander across the Wildlands and hunt magical beasts on my own quite yet, they wanted to help me develop and control my own magic. What started off as a tiny spark on my palm had now grown to a respectable blaze that I could summon on command.
“When can I learn to cast fireball?” I asked, my eyes wide open in the most innocent face I could muster.
My mother’s ladle gently cracked down on my head. Rubbing the injured spot, I turned around and looked up at my mother with fake tears in my eyes. “How could you hurt your precious son?” my expression asked. Mom grinned, one hand on her hips.
“You’re too young to learn something like that, and I don’t trust your father to teach you responsibly. You’ll probably burn down the house if he’s the one you learned fireball from.” Dad looked at mom with an expression reminiscent of a wounded puppy. “But, the hunter group Knightly Bards are going to be coming through town in a couple of days. They’re going with us to Furness City, and if you’ve been a good up to then, maybe they can teach you some new spells.”
I happily looked up at my mother. I was already excited about our trip to the big city, but now it sounded even more exciting. “Even fire-“
Before I could even finish my sentence, mom cut me off. “No. No fireball until you’re older. And nothing else that could burn the house down, either. Why don’t you try and learn something other than fire magic?”
“Dad says fire’s the best element,” I replied. Mom glared at dad.
“Teaching a ten year old fire magic,” she muttered. “Not sure if you’re crazy or just want an excuse to build a new house after this one burns down.” She looked at me. “Let’s just start off with the basics of all the elements, to find out which on you like, alright? You can learn the more dangerous spells when you know what you’re specializing in.”
“Specializing? What’s that mean?”
“You pick an element to learn more about,” dad explained. “It takes so long to master all the elements it’s more efficient to focus on one. I’m a fire mage, so my fire spells are much stronger than any other element. It also explains my smoking-hot looks. Your mother’s chosen element is air, which makes sense given that she’s such an airhea-” Dad ducked, laughing, as a dictionary flew at his head.
My parents settled down a bit as mom continued to talk. “We used to be part of the Knightly Bards, and they remember you from when you were little. On our way to Furness City, we can find out what elemental affinity you have and figure out how to teach you from there. But more important matters first, young man. I just peeked into your room, and somebody hasn’t made their bed yet.”
I groaned. “Yes, mother,” I said, trudging towards my bedroom. “I’ll do it right away.”