Do Not Click Do Not Click Do Not Click
Fire
Back

By Monique H

The house was up in flames. Thick, black smoke rolled up in clouds into the night sky, dancing, spinning, lashing and licking the wooden sides of the building. The windows were full of smoke, blocking the house’s contents from view like a great grey curtain. The fire sprang into the air, a splash of orange against the backdrop of black sky.
Her watch read 11:00pm, and normally this time of night would be quiet, the silence occasionally punctuated by a car’s engine or a cat’s mew. Now, however, the town square was in an uproar, people yelling, fire engines’ wails filling the air with panic and noise. From the alleyway opposite the burning building, Jasmine could see firemen rushing into the burning blaze, while others ran out.
The building had been a boarding school, home to about sixty teenagers.
Her eyes darted to the entrance, where several girls were now rushing out, coughing and choking, their clothes ripped and burning and expressions of shock and fright plastered onto their faces like paper mache. People rushed forwards to them, splashing buckets of water across them, offering clothes to those of them who’s own had burned away.
From an upstairs window, a figure appeared, their face sooty, and struck with panic. “Help!” They yelled to the firemen below. “The roof in the hall caved in, we’re trapped!”
Just then more engines arrived, and more men rushed in.
The old barn next to the school had been standing there for hundreds of years. It was mostly full of hay and chickens, and when a streak of fire landed on the wooden roof, causing it to catch fire, people stared up with the yelling again.
”Not the old barn!”
Even more firemen arrived. Jasmine noted that their uniforms were sleeker, and their trucks shinier. They must be from the city.
Despite their desperate attempts to stop it, the fire began to consume the barn like it’s brother was doing to the school.
Several chickens hurried from the barn, some with smoking feathers, letting off alarmed squawks and clucks.
Ambulances arrived in the square, doctors and nurses leaping out before the vehicles had come to a complete stop, rushing to the boarding school girls who had the worst burns.
As a group of firemen ran out from the boarding school, supporting a few more of the girls, the wooden doorway creaked slightly and collapsed, a shower of sparks flying into the air.
Jasmine began backing away down the alleyway, her eyes still fixed on the sight of the burning buildings. It was terrible, but so beautiful at the same time. The fire was like a wild animal, gnawing at the walls, prancing along the roof, leaping at the terrified humans with longing.
Smiling, and tuning away from the sight, Jasmine tucked her box of matches back into her pocket. Her job here was done.



Brian Falkner Books