Kessel. One of many planets conquered by the Bryn'Adûl. Hot, full of old mines, and a once-notable planet, now just another brick in the Bryn wall of planets. Sethrak was here to train. He was a decent and experienced fighter, but there was always more to learn. Particularly, he wanted to expand his knowledge of the force. He had learnt to create shadows and light. He knew to conjure lightning from his broad hands. He knew how to amplify his physical abilities, getting his energy from the force, like a constant supply of adrenaline. He knew how to probe the mind of other beings, sensing their thoughts and emotions. He had a basic understanding of how to heal wounds. Finally, he could numb himself, trucking through pain with the force.

Now he wanted to learn to conjure fire. No, he needed to. After the infection, he realized he needed a way to fight the other Bryn'Adûl should he ever need to. The Baedurin were weak against fire and heat. If he could make them implode, or throw fire as he could lightning, he would have an irreplaceable strength against them. However, he didn't know where to begin. He knew so many other abilities, but each one was different. For example, lightning was conjured by focusing, and imagining the blast hitting a target. It required concentration, and intention. He had to want it to hit and harm the opponent. Meanwhile, to heal, he found that imagining the particle around a wound packing into the wound and become flesh and blood helped make it a reality. Finally, to make his energy flow from the force, he ignored his tiredness, he forced his breathing to stay slow and controlled, and then it became second nature.

Thus, he had several ideas of how fire could be created, and directed.

Attempt One-He first tried what he did with lightning. He focused on a boulder, and imagined a ball of fire striking it. The boulder would be hit. The fire would melt, char, and crack the boulder. Nothing happened. Extending his hand forward, he tried again. Once more, the boulder would melt, char, and crack. Nothing. He tried to throw the imaginary ball. Still nothing. Not a spark, not an ounce of heat, nothing. Perhaps this wasn't the answer.

Attempt two-Next, he would see the particles. He would see them move toward the rock at a high speed. He would see them rub together so fast as they traveled that they erupted in flame. Then they would hit the boulder at a high intensity and heat. The rock, as he imagined earlier, would melt, crack, char, disintegrate even. He attempted it, but there was nothing. He tried again, slower this time, giving the particles more time to erupt. Nothing.

Attempt three-This would be the final attempt. He had made himself look foolish, though there were no spectators. He had spent half an hour setting up for nothing. He had tried the two things that worked for lightning, darkness, light, and healing. Why couldn't he do it? He also wondered why he couldn't lift objects with the force, while humans, pathetic beings compared to the Drael, could. No. He would make fire. He focused, blocking everything except the boulder from his mind. He felt the heat bombarding the planet from the sun above. He felt his rage. Rage toward himself for failing to do this simple task. Rage at the force for not answering his call. Rage at his foes for killing his fellow Bryn. Rage at Tathra Khaeus for allowing the defeats at Yurb and Ylesia. He commanded the force to do his will. He imagined the boulder was every enemy he had ever faced. Then he threw his rage at it.

The trance was broken. Sethrak was winded. The heat around him was more intense than ever before. The calm was uncanny. For a second, there was nothing. Then he saw what he had created.

The boulder was shattered. Smoke filled the area around it. Pebbles and smaller rocks sat, black, and smoldering. The ground was on fire in several places from the intensity of the heat. He had done it.

Tathra Khaeus