We Are the Children

Daily Writing Exercise: Urban/Portal Fantasy. Making teenagers save the world is a kinda a crappy move, dude. Another sideways stab at a r/WritingPrompts post. 281 words.

500 Words Story Index

“Why are you here?”

“You left,” the battered Donji stuck a clawed foot in the door before she could close it. “You saved the world and then left. I had to find you– rescue you!” His frills were flushed with blood and scaled skin tinged golden with shielding magics that protected him from the sun.

Light-on-still-waters looked the same as he did twenty years ago and for a moment the memories loom.

But she has medication now.

She’s had therapy.

And she’s had twenty years to come to terms with what they made her do.

“Did you know I believed you?” she asked, because if fate is going to give her the chance she wants to know. “I wasn’t just pretending, or playing along because I was terrified. I believed you when I lit the candle.”

He blinks and for a moment there’s a ripple of heavy purple guilt along his shoulder markings. “I– I had hoped, but I never–” 

“I was a hatchling. You knew that! You knew I hadn’t been out of the water long enough to–” she stops abruptly, having fallen into clan-speech with an instinctive ease. “It took me years to recover from that.”


Oh. He looks the same.

She reluctantly opens the door and gently tugs at him to come inside. Because it’s easy to be angry with a king twenty years into a peace she’d traded her childhood for and it’s impossible to be mad at a prince who just watched almost everyone he knows die.

So she’s saving him, again, and maybe she shouldn’t… but at least this time her therapist will have to believe ‘the crazy bits.’ And that– that’s worth something.

Martha Bechtel

My name is Martha Bechtel and I write fantasy and science fiction stories, paint small model horses silly colors, cast resin and plaster magnets, code random code (and Wordpress plugins)... Come on in and join in the fun!

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