Fire and Water

- A Serialized Novel -

Enya Royston has hidden from herself and her abilities, fearing the destruction that always comes with using them.

Author’s Note: Occie and Cress had to have their conversation…

Not So Tranquil Waters

“Never seen you take such a back role. Ever,” Oceana said as she joined her brother, aware of what he was watching and how careful he’d been to stay out of the line of sight of everyone on the shore. He was as close as he could be, yet far enough as to be out of range, not letting his empathic abilities bleed over to them.

“You know I can’t teach her what she needs to know, and I can’t be the reason she thinks she can control it. She has to know that it was her doing. Not mine.”

Oceana nodded. That part she approved of, and she was proud of him for stepping back at this point. “True, but are you sure it’s just that?”

“Are you saying something about Enya and Flint?”

Her eyes went back to the shore. The two fire elementals were getting close, fast, but then it wasn’t much of a surprise. Oceana figured that he wanted to have someone like a sister again, and Enya needed him as a teacher and a surrogate for Aidan. It had the potential for being more than that, too. “So the thought has crossed your mind.”

Cress shrugged. “If it’s going to happen, it will.”

“Damn it, Cress, why do you have to do this?”

“Not sure what you’re upset about. Enya needs to make her own choices. She has to decide her own path, and her control has to be hers. She is the one who needs to take responsibility for it, and that means that I cannot have a part in it, regardless I might feel about trying to help her. I didn’t come out here for her, anyway.”

“No, you came out here for a quick rinse and renew that patches you up for a little while, but not long enough. It’s never long enough anymore.”

“We don’t have time for me to stay in the water as long as I would need.”

“You can’t kill yourself to—”

“Stone is dying.”


“Terra called it bad. I could filter it more when she went through it. He’s been cut off from the earth, and when you’re injured and cut off from your element… That kind of pain is distinctive, and it’s worse than anything I’ve ever known. If we don’t go to him soon, he will not make it back no matter what happens.”

She closed her eyes. “Cress…”

He put his hands on her shoulders. “I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have been so blunt. I just… We don’t have a choice. We have to go. I didn’t even want to take this time, but I had to. After going through that, I… I needed something from the water.”

She nodded, putting her hands on his face. “You know how much Stone means to me, and I know you’re not even skimming the surface of what that did to you, so don’t start apologizing. Just try not to get yourself killed because you know what he is to me. I need both of you, not just the one. Don’t ever make me pick.”

“Funny. For years, I did, and you picked me.”

She sighed. She had a horrible feeling that one way or another, she’d lose one of them, and a part of her wanted to stop this before it started. She could save her brother. She knew that. She could keep him here and make sure he stayed safe. Stone was already injured; he might not make it out no matter what they did. The practical thing to do was to pick Cress.

“Come on. We have to go.”


“We are not leaving him behind. Not again. That time I swear he was dead, I couldn’t feel anything from him, but this time he isn’t, and I won’t do it. I can’t make the same mistake twice.”

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