A picture taken on June 26, 2017 shows smoke billowing in a charred forest after a wildfire in Mazagon, near the Donana National Park. More than 1.500 people were evacuated as a precaution on July 25, 2017 after a fire broke out at a nature reserve in southern Spain farmed for its boidiversity. The fire started two night ago and had by morning encroached on the Donana National Park at Moguer in the southern region of Andalusia. CRISTINA QUICLER / AFP
a/n: so here’s a little fic i wrote for chapter 61 day even though it’s already the 26th of december cOUgh. it’s a parallel between the events of chapter 61 and the present moment. i hope you enjoy it! merry christmas, everyone ! <3
everything is burning, and baz is crying.
the grass and trees around him are going up in flames, flames he set himself, and simon snow is in front of him, holding onto his face – trying to get him to stop all this, probably. baz isn’t hearing a word of what he says. he’s just staring at simon’s mouth, which is hanging open (mouth breather) and moving quickly around frantic words that don’t get past the roaring in baz’s ears. or is that the roaring of the fire around them?
it’s a complete mess - this burning forest, this failed mission with nicodemus, these two crying boys crouched in the middle of nowhere. getting nowhere.
strange, baz thinks idly, strange that all his life he’d wanted so many things - good grades, his father’s approval, his mother back - but the only thing he truly, fiercely wants before he dies is to kiss the boy he loves.
Those visions he was given long ago, those visions of his death, they came into view as the Captain laid back into the soft, familiar mattress that occupied his quarters.
There he laid in grass, blood bubbling from his chapped lips, leaking over the cracks, smoothly flowing in lines down his skin. His side was burnt, his hair scorched, his eye white with blindness. He gripped the heavy wound in his chest, knees rising and falling as he so desperately tried to stand, adrenaline making him unaware of the broken and shattered bones that’d fail to hold him up.
There he dies alone, his gaze shifting around him, admiring the emptiness of the charred forest. His father told him that the life he led would end like this, without a soul knowing of his death. He was right, too. It would be weeks before the Captain was ever found, his last, breathless moments alone with his thoughts. His sins. His memories of failed redemption and fleeting relationships. A passing smile and familiar name knew only such boundaries, nothing further. Because of that, he’d die scared and abandoned due to his own intent.
Seven people, seven objects. It was best like this, there was less hurt to be had. When the time came, and he made his way head first towards the looming threat that shattered the world in the past year, he would go and go alone.
Jorsef was needed at home, he was the lord. Taking soldiers would be suicide, and his crew deserved better.
The Captain slept with a dull feeling, a numbness. The sting of whiskey burned his throat, keeping him artificially warm throughout the night and thirsty in the morning.
ARIES - What passion, what sheer power. You are a timber fire rolling down the hills of an erupting volcano, an underground petrol source sparked to conflagration by a falling grain of flint, a hell-wrought onslaught of carnage and devastation. Nothing stops you: nothing can. The sounds of the earth are muted before your roaring, the scents wicked out under your pungent soot and fierce cinders, the colors of the world fade away to an ashen black. You remake the world as it should be: flinders, char, and a memory of light.
TAURUS - You are steady, inextinguishable. Your scope is not impressive, no, but is that all? What you lack in sheer power, sheer magnitude, you make up for in reliability. Constancy and perseverance. You are a Bunsen burner set within thousandths of a degree under the most precious of metals; you are an inimitably miniscule arc of light welding together seams that go on to withstand thousands of tons of steel; you are the red-hot filament of fire that burns in an airless bulb, throwing your life-heat onto the papers of a man who struggles desperately to illustrate what lurks in the depths of his heart. Yours is a different kind of power, a different kind of strength.
GEMINI - Gleefully, you dance, not afraid of the wind or the sea. You are the little spritz of light that skips along the lengths of a dying campfire, you are the wistful tossing of a lit candle in a gentle breeze, you are the bold embers that sit on the driftwood of an old king’s sea-funeral pyre. Yet you are also the careless cigarette butt tossed into the dry leaves at the edge of yesterday’s forest, the charred handful of pizza rolls resting in the overlooked oven, standing alone in what remains of last week’s home. It matters not where you burn, only that there is air to breathe and kindling to seize.
CANCER - Sweetness is the key. A fire that gives is a fire that lives. To those who fuel you, rejoice, for yours is a flame that burns loyal. You are a lit candle in a caliginous crypt, guiding men of scripture who seek only to pray, barring demons from their path. You are the fiery light thrown off the brazier of a great lantern in the tallest of towers, guiding light to seafaring eyes and warning them off the rocky coast. But you are timid and mulish, afraid of the unknown, so you too are a flame that hesitates to spread. You would rather whiff out in a dainty puff of smoke than torch the unfamiliar.
LEO - Not entirely flame, yet more so for it; you sear from feelings of flame. You are the starry reflection of a bonfire in all its audience’s wide-eyed gaping faces. You are the breathtaking cacophony of a synapse network firing off in tandem when confessing everything to a first love; you are a mawkish warmth seeping into gelid axe-calloused hands, having returned home to a fire from the icy reaches of a Scandinavian wilderness. You are both love and its lovers. You are both the fire and the feat, both the friction and its heat.
VIRGO - Your attention to precision is unbounded. You are fire at its most quintessential, at its most critical. You live in the infinitesimal spaces between atoms, where little blips of heat and radioactive activity register as the faintest forms of the language of the universe. There, you dabble with elemental bonds, rupturing and fusing together the building blocks of the universe. There, you compound and compound, until everything else stands not only before you, but altogether of you. And you are brutally inflexible, for the rules are the rules, and so too should the universe be only the universe. A stoic flame knows no mercy, knows no exceptions.
LIBRA - There is pride in the blaze. You live in the lit lanterns hanging by the dozens along trails in the dark woods, you are the rows of slowly crackling braziers before the palaces of the world’s greatest minds. You are the bright noon light burning through an open oculus to land ablaze on the floor of an empire’s greatest library. You are the little fire in the heart that wails for its own Ozymandian epic. And yet, you too are the heartless flames of a plundered village, the flames dancing along the water next to sinking sparked-up oil tankers, and the arrogant arsons sparked by narrow-minded bigots.
SCORPIO - Nothing is important except what burns, and how. You are lit with determination, with a goal. Creme brulee caramelizes to a succulent glaze under your touch, spat from a butane torch. An intricate contraption balances counterweights and dials underneath a metal basin, and sparks you upon the propane spout to heat the water that soon soothes a home’s battered achey bones. You dance along the head of a falling match, spread onto petrol-dampened concrete, and forge fire along a trail that combusts in ecstacy within the fuel-soaked house of an unfaithful lover. You are arrantly unyielding; you are the fire that finishes.
SAGITTARIUS - Who needs an audience? Only you can truly appreciate your own doings. You are the unchecked flames scorching along the surface of an underground methane field, torching forever at the center of Karakum’s crater of fire. You are a star, billions of trillions of light-years away in the infinite expanse of the universe, expelling your light upon the heavens simply because you can. You are white lightning shining upon an empty field of Kansas wheat, you are hot coals kicked under the cold beach sands, condemned to forlorn eternity. You blaze alone, you blaze freely, and when you can, you blaze forever.
CAPRICORN - Mark the occasion! You don’t burn at just any old two-bit bonfire. A lucky little girl blows out one of your little lights for every year she’s lived. An old rust-blasted engine is hoisted back into a truck for its first ride in twenty years, and upon ignition you saunter behind its racing pistons to lap up every single drop of petrol. You crouch eagerly on the end of a branding pole, awaiting the searing touch of an animal’s uncharred sarcoline hide. You burn to commemorate these moments, but fade to obscurity as the novelty withers with you.
AQUARIUS - You resist your end at every avenue. You are a vengeful flame, bitter at the world who would come to extinguish you, and learn only to reject the ephemeral life you live. A pot brimming with cooking oil on the stove ignites your hatred, and you hope, oh so desperately hope for a bit of water poured over you to blast yourself into the sky. You are the sparks of light that kindle upon a little pyramid of sticks under the dripping bough of a tree, giving warmth and light to a little girl lost in the rain, who desperately hoped she’d remember how to find you when the time came. You are a non-negotiable flame, only content to burn on your own terms, for better or for worse.
PISCES - You forget yourself too often. You are the flame that burns along the corner of an unwanted diary, but quickly settles into a steady blue tinge; you are not hungry for the pages, or… anything at all, for that matter. You are the dud match that lights up far too hot and far too quickly, useless but to burn the fingertip. And oh, how shy you are, but what you truly wish for is to express yourself. You can be the verdant green flame lit off a sluice of boric acid, or the dazzling white sparks showering off an ignited magnalium alloy sparkler. But you find yourself in all these odd places, all these curios of fire, that your shame struggles along with you to find a place where you can just plop down and burn content.
You are made of fire
But do not let the flame in your heart burn all the oxygen in your lungs
And leave your bones ashes in your body
Your soul unable to fill its housing
Your skin folding because there is nothing left underneath to support it
Your mind a crime scene, a charred forest of dreams long since used as fuel for the heat that soaked your veins
You are made of fire,
But you can still burn.