Farren lay in the dark, listening to the quiet drip drop of the rain. He stretched, wincing at layer on layer of bruises.
His cot creaked as he settled on his side and listened.
There was no answering sound from his bunkmates.
He rose and placed his feet carefully, silently. He stepped to the door and looked back.
Tomas, Martin, and Keelen, each lay in various positions of deep sleep.
Farren took a slow steady breath, wincing again at the pain in his ribs, then tiptoed down the dark hall.
A patch of light shone from the Master’s quarters, barring his way.
He stood in the shadows outside the light and oriented his mind to the Master’s room, as his memory supplied the scene.
The Master at the table, sipping his tea as he worked by candlelight. The window dark behind him, and the fire a bed of coals to his right.
Farren sent his thoughts into the room in search of moisture.
There, hugging the cup of tea, and again, around the window.
He gathered up the moisture with his mind and brought it to warm over the glowing coals.
The moisture did not like the heat. It sensed the sleeping fire in the coals, but Farren kept his mental hand firm.
When the moisture was pleasantly warm he eased it over to the Master.
Now Farren set aside his bitter hurt, his hatred. Placed them in a mental box and closed the lid. The pain from his beating went into another mental box.
He sent his thoughts out to the collected moisture.
Sleep, sleep was all he wanted. Heavy warmth weighed at each eyelid. Sleep.
He heard the scrape of the Master’s chair. A giant yawn.
Elation flickered, but Farren clamped down on the emotion and thought again of the sleepy comfort of a warm bed.
A brief puff and the candle light was gone, leaving Farren in the dark.
He crept past the doorway and around the corner to the big outer door.
A burst of rain caught him in the face as he slipped outside–but he didn’t care. Now he was in his element, and the storm clouds were already responding to his thoughts.
Let the Master mock his water talent. Let his fellow students despise him. Water made up their world, and water could destroy it, too.
He started to chuckle as he climbed the hill, his wet clothes sticking to his body and the rain running down his face.
On the hilltop he turned toward the building below. Raising his palms to the sky he called the storm.
Come to me. There is dry to be made wet, downward paths on which to flow.
He opened the boxes in his mind and let the emotion roil out.
Storm and rage with cleansing anger. Accept your rightful place as lord of the elements.
Come to me.
And the water came. Flowing out of nearby streams, storming from the sky. The little valley became a small lake. The water reached higher than the peak of the Master’s roof and rose fast toward the hill.
Farren laughed, and let it come.
Suanne Warr lives in North Carolina, nestled between the mountains and the sea. She loves reading, history and martial arts. She has stories forthcoming in several online magazines, and a Ruins anthology. You can visit www.suannewarr.com for more information.