The world began with a wish and a flame.
The flame sank until it was nestled into the heart of the wish. There it grew, until long tendrils of fire became feathers, and molten gold became a beak. Rubies trapped in living flame peered out into the darkness.
Light and dark existed together in a complicated dance. Here advancing, now retreating--two partners that never touched. Brilliant reds, golds, and oranges of liquid fire cast long shadows against the rocky walls that held it captive.
The heart of the world watched the play of light and shadow, impatient at its emptiness. “There must be more.” the voice spoke for the first time, a raspy whisper that became a symphony of sound.
It looked below, but saw only the lake of fire--the place of its birth. It looked around, but saw only the hard lines of stone. It looked above, but all was blackness.
The known and the unknown.
It bowed its head, savoring the breath of flame. And then, with its eyes burning upwards, it stretched up and flew into the shadows. It beat its wings, fire licking the air and melting rock, diminishing as it ate its way through night and stone until it emerged into a world of blue and green.
“I’ve always thought Evauld a bit too poetic to make a reliable historian,” Mara said as she closed the book. “Is it true you were greater and more powerful before you emerged from your hole in the ground?”