Just for giggles, here's a snippet of what I'm working on for NaNoWriMo. We'll call it Project Nano 2. (Or, if you'd rather, Night of Fire and Ash)
We were dismissed to go about our duties, but Amir lagged behind, his dark eyes troubled. “What’s up, kid?”
He looked surprised, like he hadn’t even realized I was still standing there. “Nothing. Just…thinking about the anniversary.”
I nodded. Most of us remembered very well where we were, ten years ago. “You were what…twelve?”
“Thirteen.” I could see the shiver crawl across his shoulders. “They burned our neighbor’s house down. Thought it was ours. She was old, like in her eighties. She didn’t make it out.”
Yeah. Purity Night – called the Night of Fire and Ash by most of the Otherkind I knew – had resulted in more human deaths than Otherkind. Some nights, laying alone in my apartment, I could still smell the smoke. Funny how that smoke smelled different than any fire I had scented before or since. Almost like you could smell the very hate burning.
“How old were you, Fiddler?”
“Seventeen.” I could remember the feeling of the dew on my bare feet as I slipped out the back door, the red glow of houses burning three blocks over. To my adolescent mind, I thought if I could just get out of the house, they would leave my family alone… It was only when I heard the glass breaking, my sister screaming, that I turned back.
“Did anyone in your family get hurt?”
Men died, that night. Their flesh turned black, the fat boiling from within. The masks that were supposed to hide their faces melted into their skin instead. The smoke curled out of their mouths, their noses, choking to death on the very air that should have saved them. “My sister got cut with some flying glass. They shattered her bedroom window, thinking it was mine.” I was never charged. The deaths were ruled accidental, the arsonists caught in their own accelerants.
“Do you think it could happen again? I mean, Franklin Pitt. He’s out of jail now.”
I tasted char at the back of my throat and swallowed it down. The back of my t-shirt fluttered as the air heated just above my skin, the ifreet in me rousing at the sound of the most hated name in the world. “Anything’s possible, kid.” Franklin Pitt would be speaking at the summit, too. I only hoped I could stand next to him, look into his hate-filled eyes, and not incinerate him where he stood. The ifreet would find no guilt in that. The human…might.