Awakening The Chaos

Chaotic energy swirled around the empty box, Niamh felt it buffeting her body like the tempestuous wind outside. She was stuck inside, no way out or to move anywhere, trapped in this tiny, dark space with nothing more than that box. The air in the room smelled faintly sweet, as though something had been recently burned. It wasn't pleasant and she shivered involuntarily. There was just one other thing that made it less unpleasant – the box. Chaotic energy was supposed to be drawn to chaotic things in some sort of magnetic sense. Maybe if she wasn’t there it would leave?

Niamh knew there were no such things as coincidences, but she couldn't help feeling hopeful nonetheless.

The door swung open without warning. A gust of wind swept in carrying an unfamiliar scent with it. The door slammed behind a tall man who wore a cloak over his clothes and looked quite intimidating. His hair and beard were so long they reached down to his hips. He walked past her, making his way to where the strange smell emanated from.

"What's that smell?" he asked gruffly.

"I don't know," Niamh replied uncertainly.

It wasn't exactly the most encouraging response, she knew that. If someone else saw what she was seeing then they might ask what it meant. But that didn' mean anything; maybe he was just another person looking for her, she decided.

The stranger touched the sides of the box and immediately started to shake uncontrollably. The smell grew stronger, and when he spoke again his voice sounded strained.

"Who are you?" he demanded, his eyes wide, staring at her.

She opened her mouth, but before she could say anything she heard footsteps approaching. An armored figure stepped into view behind the man. He took up most of the doorway, his shoulders towering above them both. He was covered in blood, the scent of which nearly overpowered her. Niamh tried to press a hand to her nose to prevent the sweet, rotting stench from invading her senses.

"That smells bad," the figure said, "Who is she?"

"I… I… she's…" The man looked at the mysterious intruder with fearful eyes.

Niamh felt the power emanating off of the person, it threatened to send her into a panic attack. She closed her eyes, hoping against hope that he would go away.

The figure took two steps into the room until he stood directly in front of her. As soon as he saw her, the man let out a cry and turned, running for the door.

Niamh gasped when she felt a burning sensation under her fingertips. Black purplish flames engulfed the desk and the box. Lifting one hand up she watched mutely as it pulsed. hovering above her index fingertip. She felt powerful. Terrifying yet familiar at once. Like she'd known this power all her life. This strange force called the Chaos. The name echoed through her mind, the power resonating within her. And suddenly her whole world changed.

As quickly as it came, it left. Niamh fell to the ground, landing hard on her arm. Her head throbbed, but it was a minor discomfort compared to the pain she was feeling.

The sound of footsteps brought her back to reality. When she looked up she found herself eye to eye with the caped stranger.

"You are not a true Firebender," he stated in a calm, level voice.

A sudden fear filled Naimh; she could feel her skin heating up beneath her clothes. What if he was wrong about her? Was she really a Firebender? Couldn't people change their names or take different forms? Or maybe he hadn't seen her true form, maybe that was why he assumed it was a Firebender. She needed him to tell the truth before anything happened; otherwise she wouldn't have any chance of escaping.

"I am." Despite how weak her voice sounded it still caused the stranger to look at her with interest. "My name's Niamh. You probably know my grandfather, General Iriam. He's the Firelord now and he wants me dead." She hoped the words sounded convincing, she wanted to appear strong. At least that was a little easier than admitting that her grandfather actually killed her mother. No use making him suspicious. She could see a small smirk forming on the man's face.

"Your grandfather is dead. And your mother," he glanced at her hand for a brief moment before returning his gaze to hers, "she destroyed herself." She swallowed, refusing to let the traitorous tears to fall. "This place is forbidden to all except those who serve the Firelord willingly."

He took a step closer. The fire in his eyes seemed to burn brighter. "Who are you really?"

Before Niamh could reply, the room began to shake, rattling its foundation. The ceiling groaned and cracks started appearing across its surface.

One by one pieces of it collapsed onto the floor.

"What the hell?" Naimh cried out, backing away from the rapidly encroaching destruction.

The man was clearly trying to intimidate her, but he couldn't control what he unleashed on the room. She didn't want to stay any longer. She grabbed her bag and ran, stumbling several times along the way, towards the exit. Just as she rounded the corner into the hallway beyond the building a large part of the wall shattered, sending splinters and chunks flying everywhere.

A heavy weight landed on top of her and she felt his warm breath on the side of her face. She felt the rage inside her building up before a tingling sensation made her look at her fingers. The chaotic black flames flickered hungrily. She knew what needed to be done, lowering her head onto the floor she slammed the back of it into his nose, grinning in satisfaction as she felt it shatter.

The stranger had jumped off her and was now cradling his face. Holding out her hand towards him, she willed the flames to destroy everything. With one final blow she sent a torrent of fire raining down.

Afterward, she slowly sat up and examined her surroundings. The entire building appeared to have collapsed in on itself. In some places walls had crumbled inward. Windows were broken or missing altogether. Several rooms lay in rubble and smoke filled the air. She coughed lightly, wiping dust and ashes from her face. The stranger was nowhere to be seen.

"Hello?" she called out, "anyone here?"

There was no answer but she was expecting none. It wasn't like it really mattered.

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