Hi y’all! This is a short story based on a hook that my sister-in-law, Nea, wrote for me. I plan to write something, maybe not something this long, but something between the Prince of Slaves chapters. I had a fun time writing this one, and I pray that you have a fun time reading it.
By the way, I apologize for the poor cover art. This is what happens when I try to draw my own. But hey, at least it fits with the cheesy theme!
My Girlfriend is a Phoenix
The girl turned into ash.
Rodney blinked; his breath catching in his gut. “Avaria?”
He scooped some of the ash into his hands and shouted her name again.
He felt his heart race. He knew he was panicking, but what else did one do when their girlfriend turns into ash right next to you.
A breeze came by and the ashes were pushed to the edge of the blanket.
“No, no, no!” Rodney looked around. He grabbed the wine bottle and drank as fast as possible.
When the bottle was half empty, another breeze blew in and blew the ash onto him. He turned off the blanket and emptied his stomach. The wine bottle lay underneath his expelled lunch.
“No…” Rodney groaned and held his head. He grabbed one of the glasses and started scraping the ashes into it.
“Do I call the police? The ambulance? The coroner?”
The spot next to him started glowing, and Rodney shielded his eyes and ran as it got brighter and hotter. He fumbled to flip open his phone and punch the numbers but dropped it.
A rumble of thunder erupted from the light and floored Rodney.
After his ears stopped ringing, he looked back at the picnic blanket. It was ash now, too.
But Avaria stood there blinking her amber eyes. Her orange hair flowed in the breeze behind her as she licked her red lips. Translucent wings of light stretched out behind her and slowly faded away.
She turned her head at an angle and met Rodney’s eyes. “It happened again, didn’t it?”
Rodney’s brown eyes widened and his jaw dropped.
Suddenly, Avaria looked around as if alarmed. “Come on, we have to go. They’ll be coming soon.”
She quickly walked to the car.
“Excuse me?” Rodney followed after her. “What just happened.”
“I can tell you in the car. We don’t have time.” She looked through her clutch as they walked shaking her head. “I’m such an idiot.”
Rodney raced in front of her to open the car door.
He got in as she focused on taking deep breaths.
“What just happened?” Rodney tossed the keys into the back seat. “And why do we have to leave so immediately?”
Her eyes widened, but she focused on taking another deep breath. “Please, can we drive?”
The worry in her eyes pulled on Rodney’s heart, but he needed answers. Was she even safe to have in the car? “After you tell me what just happened.”
“Listen, I don’t want to worry you, but there are probably going to be some pretty bad people showing up soon, so can we please leave.”
Knocking on Rodney’s window made him jump and turn. A police officer held up his badge. “Roll the window down, sir.”
“Don’t.” Avaria rhythmically tapped her knees. “We need to go. Now.”
The police officer reached for his gun. “Sir, step out of the vehicle.”
“Rodney, please!” Avaria closed her eyes. “He’s trying to abduct me.”
Rodney glanced between the hot girl in his passenger seat and the police officer.
Then threw the shifter into reverse and floored it.
By the time he turned onto the road, the lights and sirens were on his tail.
“Avaria!” Rodney was having trouble keeping his eyes from darting to the rearview mirror.
“Yes?” She smiled and sighed relieved.
“Why are we running from the police?”
Rodney’s foot slipped off the accelerator. “If you hadn’t just burst into ash then reappeared I’d think you’re crazy right now! Explain.”
She focused on another deep breath before responding. “Please don’t yell. I’m a Pheonix. You see, long ago, there were four races, phoenixes, dragons, unicorns, and men. Over time, they started having children with each other. Because of the mixture of magics, most people just ended up not having any active magic, or just being men. Like you.”
“You’re telling me that horses, birds, and giant lizards did the naughty with humans?” Rodney took a sharp left.”
“Head to the city, their magic is less effective there.” Avaria braced herself on the dashboard. “And no, they’re types of magic. Phoenixes turn into ashes whenever our body temperatures get too high. We regenerate in a ball of explosive heat within five minutes, but forget what caused us to overheat in the first place. Because of this, we’re kind of immortal. The unicorns grow a horn. With it, they can grant one wish, but it will kill them.”
Rodney checked the rearview mirror. The police were right on their tail. Rodney quickly checked the road in front of them before glances back again. The passenger door on the blue police car opened and a shirtless cop hung half out for a moment as he grew wings. He lept in the air and landed in front of Rodney’s car.
Avaria pointed to the winged man. “He’s a dragon. Run him over.”
“It’s okay. The world is better without them.”
Rodney swerved around the man. He was not interested in being charged with murder.
“They can sprout wings and fly. Oh, duck.”
Avaria pushed Rodney’s head down. The horn honked as the back window blew out.
“They can also blow fire.”
Rodney yanked the steering left to stay on the road. “Why are they after you.”
“They want to drink my blood.”
“I thought they were dragons, not vampires!”
“I’m an immortal phoenix. If they drink my blood, it can prolong their life. They already have six of us captured. They were my friends.”
The roof of the car dented in with a large thud.
Avaria screamed and burst into ash again. Rodney slammed on the brakes, making the dragon fall onto the roof of the car.
The police car slammed them from behind and Rodney’s head hit the steering wheel.
* * *
Rodney blinked awake, rubbing his head. He sat up and pushed the blankets off, swinging his legs over the edge of his bed.
How’d I get back here? He tugged at the sleeves of his button-up. The same one he had worn on his date. Rubbing the sleep specks from his eyes, he checked the mirror and saw the bruise across his forehead.
There was a knock on the front door.
Rodney tiptoed to the kitchen and grabbed his carving knife.
He glanced through the peephole.
“Monoca?” Rodney quickly tossed the cleaver into the sink, undid the lock on the front door, and threw open the door.
“What are you doing back here?”
Her blond ringlet curled fell perfectly around her face. She batted her blue eyes above her small slightly upturned nose. “I wanted to apologize. For how I treated you.”
Rodney blinked and looked her up and down, his mouth hung agape.
“Do you mind if I come in so we can talk?”
“Of course.” Rodney stepped out of the way and held his arm out.
Monoca walked past holding her head up and made herself comfortable on his couch.
“I was actually kind of busy. Do you mind if I make a call quick?”
She frowned and gave a frustrated sigh. “I guess.”
Rodney checked his pockets for his cell. When they came up empty, he searched his room.
“Did I leave it at the park?” He thought aloud.
“What was that?” Monoca watched him from the doorway.
“I can’t find my phone. Can I borrow yours?”
“Why? Who do you need to call so bad? Surely, I’m better than they are.”
Rodney smiled and let out an airy chuckle. He turned his back to her and rubbed the back of his head, fixing his blankets.
Rodney looked over at her and walked out of his room going to the kitchen. “Why are you here, Monoca?”
“Well,” she sighed and grabbed his hand. “If you’d stop and listen, you’d find out.”
Rodney nodded but opened his junk drawer to grab the scrap of paper with Avaria’s number on it.
“What’s that?” Monoca swiped it from his hand. “Avaria? You have another girlfriend?”
“We broke up three months ago. Why does it matter? Can I borrow your phone to call her?”
“But I want you now, Rodney.” She blinked her blue eyes and softly bit her bottom lip. “Forget about this Avaria.” Monoca crinkled the paper and tossed it behind her.
“Monoca!” Rodney moved past her to grab it, but she stopped him with a gentle hand to his chest.
“Trust me. You want me.”
Rodney shook his head frustrated. “No, I’m sure I don’t. Now please leave.” Rodney grabbed the paper clump and opened the door.
Monoca stared at Rodney as if he were an overflowing toilet. Rage filled her eyes as she slammed the door.
“I tried to help you, you pathetic scum.” A lump formed on her forehead, came to a point, and popped through the skin as it grew another eleven inches.
Rodney stared horrified until the horn was nearly full grown.
Monoca smirked and tossed her hair back. “I’ve waited too long to run someone through.”
She lowered her head and charged.
Rodney dove for the carving knife in the sink.
Monoca’s horn scratched his side, but he grabbed the knife and slashed with all his might.
She screamed and held her forehead as her horn clattered to the ground.
Rodney scooped it up and held both it and the knife towards Monoca. He blinked at it surprised that it was hollow.
She glared at him and grabbed the frying pan the was resting on the stove.
I need to go save Avaria. Rodney stepped backwards towards the door. He glanced down at his tingling feet.
They were translucent. Rodney screamed, but it was lost in the gush of wind that blew up.
He blinked away the spots of light that hung in his eyes. Avaria slept tied to a chair right in front of him. Her blood flowed from the needle in her arm to the sac on the pole next to her.
Rodney ran over, scanning the dimly lit white room. They were alone for the moment. He shoved the horn into his back pocket. And used the knife to cut the ropes.
He undid the buttons of his shirt, ripped off one of the sleeves, then knelt by her arm.
He gently pulled the needle out and tied the sleeve tight around the drop of blood that formed.
The door burst open behind him, and Rodney jumped and fell back.
He caught himself with his hands.
“Rodney?” Avaria blinked and looked at him worried.
“Sound the alarm!” The man at the door spoke into his radio before looking at Rodney. “If you surrender we might let you live.”
Rodney blinked. He took a deep breath as the man started coming closer, wings forming behind him.
As he screamed, Rodney grabbed the knife and lept towards the dragon.
Fire singed the tips of his hair as the knife drove home into the man’s chest.
The man gurgled and fell still.
Rodney stood looked a bit horrified, but quickly turned back to Avaria. “Can you walk?”
Avaria stood and caught herself on the chair, holding her head.
Rodney turned around and helped her onto his back. He groaned but charged through the door.
A thunderstorm of footsteps quickly gained on them.
“Hang on, Avaria.” Rodney kept jogged through the hallways, praying that he would find an exit.
A door smalled open in front of them. Men and women with horned walked through, surrounding one such woman in a fine dress and a two-foot horn.
Rodney went to turn around but flinched at the wall of fire.
Avaria screamed as she took the hit and turned to ash.
The regal dressed unicorn yelled at the dragons behind Rodney.
Rodney ducked and scooped up the majority of Avaria’s ashes. He glanced around as the two sides closed in on him.
He dove into the room to his right as the dragons attempted to tackle him in place.
Rodney kicked and latched the door behind him, thankful that it was made of metal. He set Avaria’s ashed down on the floor and piled file cabinets on top of the increasingly hot door.
He looked around for weapons but only came up with the hollow horn.
A plan dawned on him.
He scooped Avaria’s ashes into the horn and held it out towards the door as the metal finally melted into a pile.
The unicorns charged into the room.
Rodney closed his eyes and held the horn out in front of him. It glowed brightly, the heat and light shooting through the end.
The army in front of him screamed as they took the blast.
Rodney only opened his eyes and looked when there was silence.
Avaria stood amidst a pile of unicorn horns. She blinked a bit confused at first, but a smile crept across her lips as the pieces came together.
She raced over, wrapped her arms around his neck, and kissed him.
For three seconds. Then turned into ashes.
Rodney sighed and scouted on ahead. Through the door the unicorns had come through was a clearly marked exit. There was a desk with a drawer full of car keys. Rodney took a hand full and went back to the file room.
Avaria stood looking a bit confused again.
“Just avoid kissing me until we get somewhere safe, okay?”
Avaria blushed but took a few deep breaths to calm herself and nodded.
“Now come on.” Rodney jogged out with Avaria behind him.
After they had driven out of the city, Rodney reached over and took her hand in his. “I promise that as long as I live, I’ll help protect you and the other phoenixes.”
Rodney blinked and pulled over as his hand filled with ash.