“Very well. Remember the air,” warned Aelvyn. “You must respect its Element. Do not try to cut it - try to move the sword between it.” Anna brought the sword down with a swish, but it felt awkward, wrong. She tried again. This time the sword slipped easily through the spaces in the particles, and she felt a sense of ‘right-ness’. This was how to do it, she understood - this was what her previous training had enabled her to realise.
She realised that her arms were covered with small goose-pimples. Without even pausing to think, she lit a small fire in her blood, to warm herself up. She ignored Aelvyn’s stunned surprise as he realised that Anna could do this while otherwise occupied, and ignored the fact that her skin was now glowing with the hidden power, instead focusing on her sword and the twirling patterns it was drawing in the air.
“Good!” exclaimed Aelvyn. “Now, try to add to it the other powers you have learned.” Anna did not stop to think. She sent a small burst of flame down the sword, which glowed and sparked with the fire. It twirled ever faster, a glowing nimbus of power and glory.
“I can do this! I can really do this!” Anna felt ecstatic. She had been so worried that she wouldn’t be worthy of the burden that had been placed on her – so worried that she was let all the people down that were depending on her. Now, for the first time, she realised that she did have a chance. She realised that maybe, just for once, she was doing something right.
“Did I not tell you that you were strong?” Aelvyn pointed out, but she was not listening, instead preferring to concentrate on the water that she was now pouring down the blade. She transformed it into ice, and then melted it a moment later with a second burst of fire.
“Try Earth!” Aelvyn called out, and Anna pondered for a moment. What weapons did the Earth hold? Finding the answer, she sent a stream of lava and molten rock down the blade, immediately in tune with the more fiery side of the Element.
After almost ten minutes experimenting with the Elements and Anna stopped, her sword falling to rest its point on the ground and the last sparks popping out in the air. She wiped the sweat from her brow, although there was not nearly as much of it as she had been expecting, somehow.
“Wow,” she whispered, and felt her racing pulse, the excitement causing a tide in her blood. “Wow.”