Fire Girl by Samantha Ofer

We feared the fire girl.

Feared the flames on her skin that roared in a fiery swirl

Feared her charred hair and smokey air.

To calm her fire, she had to take care

Or else her fire powers unintentionally burnt.

I remember one incident in the year ‘09.

We were friends at the time.

Her fingers, like matches, set fire to a paper.

The teacher had to put it out with a fire extinguisher.

My classmates stared in horror.

Her face revealed shame

She feared her power of flame.

I looked to her, then to my peers.

I stopped speaking to her that year.

I was afraid of fire and rejection.

One day during recess, we sat around bored.

I watched as she aimlessly walked, ignored.

Her flames merely simmered and she seemed almost ordinary

Until one boy whispered, “Isn’t she scary?”

Anxiously, I nodded in agreement.

And just like that, she was belittled.

Unfazed, the other kids merely giggled.

I shifted uncomfortably in my seat

Then I turned and saw her tears hissing in the heat

She was made of fire, yet helpless.

Unnoticed by teachers, the jeers piled up

Until the fire girl had finally had enough.

Our taunts were like logs that fed the fire.

She grew angry and bitter until the flames grew higher.

The air grew hot. Our skin and eyes burned.

As her flames touched the ceiling, I grew more concerned.

But I did nothing.

The school was engulfed in red

As fire erupted from her head.

Frightened, we began to run away.

I looked back to see if she was okay.

I never saw her again.

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