#FTT 12 : The Sky Burned

“The sky burned!” One of the knights sat up in his bed. Burns, open wounds, and charred flesh covered nearly half his body. He should not have been able to move. That he was sitting and screaming showed the terror he’d experienced when the invaders attacked.

Eyela placed her hand on his shoulder, “Calm, young one. Calm.” Her fairy magic flowed through her fingertips. Nano-machines in the soldier’s blood and organs responded to Eyela’s request, and released an ocean of endorphins into his blood, deadening the intense pain he was in. They also released GABA into his blood. It quickly spread through his body. The soldier fell asleep.

Eyela closed her eyes. “Mystica, wherever you are, I hope you find your way here soon.” She looked around the great hall of the castle. Wooden cots were everywhere, with wounded soldiers, women and children filling them all. When they ran out of cots, they used mats on the floor.

The sky had indeed burned. She had no other way to describe it. She closed her eyes, and tried to calm herself, placing her hands on the cold stone of the wall, and remembering. Her winged soldiers, taking to the sky to defend the kingdom from the attacking aliens. Except no aliens appeared. Just a streak of black cutting across the sky, leaving a trail of white smoke behind it.

It moved so rapidly, no one could shoot it down. When the black streak got over the kingdom, maybe 100 feet above the ground, it exploded. But it was an explosion unlike any the fairies had ever known. The explosion sprayed some strange substance through the air. A secondary explosion rapidly followed, igniting that substance.

The sky burned, it’s flames consuming everything it touched. Soldiers fell from the sky, trailing fire behind them. Many of them died before they reached the ground. Others died when the ground stopped their falls. So few survived.

Houses, shops, carts, carriages, trees, and everything else on the ground erupted into flames. Nearly a third of the kingdom burned. Whole families burned to ash by the flame. An entire wing of the castle was nothing but charred stone walls, a burned out husk of what it had been.

She heard a voice in her head, “It was a fuel-air bomb.” It was the machines. They explained how it released a fine mist of highly flammable fuel into the air, using an explosive shock wave to spread it over an area, and then a primary explosive to ignite the fuel, and spread it even further with a second shock wave. They explained how the oxygen in the air helped the fuel burn. How the fire sucked the oxygen out of the air, so the fairies couldn’t breathe, How the flames and fuel burned everything they touched.

Eyela knew the invading humans were dangerous, but she’d never expected such violence and cruelty. That they would burn everything to the ground for no reason made no sense to her.

The machines interrupted her thoughts, “We have informed the White Witch.”

Indeed they had, for Mystica simply appeared in the midst of the injured. Eyela said nothing. She knew the machines had told Mystica everything. She watched as Mystica called on the white magic. White clouds appeared throughout the room. They fell on the injured, and slowly soaked into the bodies. As they did, Eyela watched their burned, broken bodies heal.

White Magic indeed. She understood it was the machines following Mystica’s commands, using available subatomic particles, and atoms to repair the damaged bodies filling the room. Within seconds, all the injured healed. Much to Eyela’s relief, they all slept.

Eyela watched as Mystica scanned the room, tears falling from her eyes. She wished she could answer the one question she saw in Mystica’s haunted eyes. “Why?”

But she knew there was no why. There was only war. And the news of more places where the sky burned.

657 Words
@LurchMunster


I wrote this for Week 12 of Alissa Leonard‘s Finish That Thought. Please, go read all the creatively shared stories in this week’s challenge.

Eyela closed her eyes. “Mystica, wherever you are, I hope you find your way here soon.” She looked around the great hall of the castle. Wooden cots were everywhere, with wounded soldiers, women and children filling them all. When they’d run out of cots and beds, they’d used mats on the floor.

The sky had indeed burned. She had no other way to describe it. She closed her eyes, and tried to calm herself, placing her hands on the cold stone of the wall, and remembering. Her winged soldiers, taking to the sky to defend the kingdom from the attacking aliens. Except no aliens appeared. Just a streak of black cutting across the sky, leaving a trail of white smoke behind it.

It moved so rapidly, no one could shoot it down. When the black streak got over the kingdom, maybe 100 feet above the ground, it exploded. But it was an explosion unlike any the fairies had ever known. The explosion sprayed some strange substance through the air. A secondary explosion rapidly followed, igniting that substance.

The sky burned, it’s flames consuming everything it touched. Soldiers fell from the sky, trailing fire behind them. Many of them died before they reached the ground. Others died when the ground stopped their falls. So few survived.

Houses, shops, carts, carriages, trees, and everything else on the ground erupted into flames. Nearly a third of the kingdom burned. Whole families burned to ash by the flame. An entire wing of the castle turned into charred stone walls, a burned out husk of what it had been.

She heard a voice in her head, “It was a fuel-air bomb.” It was the machines. They explained how it released a fine mist of highly flammable fuel into the air, using an explosive shock wave to spread it over an area, and then a primary explosive to ignite the fuel, and spread it even further with a second shock wave. They explained how the oxygen in the air helped the fuel burn. How the fire sucked the oxygen out of the air, so the fairies couldn’t breathe. How the flames and fuel burned everything they touched.

Eyela knew the invading humans were dangerous, but she’d never expected such violence and cruelty. That they would burn everything to the ground for no reason made no sense to her.

The machines interrupted her thoughts, “We have informed the White Witch.”

Indeed they had, for Mystica simply appeared in the midst of the injured. Eyela said nothing. She knew the machines had told Mystica everything. She watched as Mystica called on the white magic. White clouds appeared throughout the room. They fell on the injured, and slowly soaked into the bodies. As they did, Eyela watched their burned, broken bodies heal.

White Magic indeed. She understood it was the machines following Mystica’s commands, using available subatomic particles, and atoms to repair the damaged bodies filling the room. Within seconds, all the injured were whole. Much to Eyela’s relief, they all slept.

Eyela watched as Mystica scanned the room, tears falling from her eyes. She wished she could answer the one question she saw in Mystica’s haunted eyes. “Why?”

But she knew there was no why. There was only war. And the news of more places where the sky burned.

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