"No, it's all underground." Ezin continued to explain. She and Isaac were walking through a mass of multicolored trees. There were trees with indigo leaves, some with red, and still others with orange.
"So, you're telling me there is a city of almost five-hundred people, living under the ground?" Isaac asked.
"Yes. Would you like to see?"
Before he could answer, the smells, sights and sounds of the forest they had landed in before dissolved into nothingness. It was too dark to see, and it smelled a little musty. He was sitting once again, this time on a moist rock that was soaking his pants.
"Little light, Isaac?" she asked. He called the heat forward, the little light flickering on in front of him. They were in a narrow cave, a small trickle of water flowing down the middle.
"Water." Isaac said barely above a whisper. He hadn't thought about water much. How many days had he been in this place? It was nearly a week now, wasn't it? Shouldn't he be dead by now?
"It's this way." Ezin called to him, on the edge of his vision. He ran toward her, the fire moving with him. The flickering light made the walls seem to crawl, and though he knew there was nothing there he tried to stay in the middle of the cave.
"Why haven't I gotten thirsty?" he asked. "I've been here for nearly a week, and it hasn't even crossed my mind! What is this place?"
She sighed and waited for him to catch up. "This is where I live. All the Immortals have a place they stay." She said this almost sadly, but he didn't have time to wonder why. He had stopped listening when she said 'immortal'.
"... and on the day that the immortal four reunite with the six elements, the darkness itself shall rise and death will befall the world."
"What do you mean, Immortal?" he demanded. "Do you know who the four Immortals are?"
It took her a moment to answer. "Where did you hear about us? Moonal said that almost everyone on earth had forgotten about us."
Isaac opened his mouth, but shut it back. Did he really want to tell her that he had heard this from a demon? He suddenly felt stupid. Why had he listened to that demon anyway? It was probably just trying to scare him.
"Well, anyway, " Ezin continued. "The four Immortals are The Phoenix, Moonal, Kaos and myself."
He looked at her, curiosity still plain on his face, and she continued. "The Phoenix is the Immortal of Life. Moonal is the Immortal of Time. I am the Immortal of Space. And Kaos... well he's a little misunderstood. You see, he's... " She sighed heavily. "He's the Immortal of Death."
Isaac absorbed this new information. It gave him so many more questions, but he knew he didn't have the time to ask them. There were two Immortals in walking distance of each other, and who knew when the other two could show up?
"So, I've always heard there were only 6 Elementals. But what about all these people we're about to go see? And I know this one kid that can control ice..."
Ezin laughed. "My mistake, I should have explained that part better." The cave was getting narrower, and Isaac wasn't sure how much father they'd be able to go. Already they had to walk one in front of the other.
"The person who controls ice is a demon. Or, half demon, anyway. Most demons have the ability to create fire by rapidly accelerating molecules. Well, he has something against demons, and just his sheer willpower has reversed this, giving him the gift to freeze things. Now, the people who live here used to be Elementals. But, once a person is born of the same element as them, they lose their powers. Mostly, anyway."
Isaac tried to imagine what it would be like without his fire running through his veins. The heat was as much a part of him as his mind. Without it, he would be a radically different person. "What do you mean, mostly? Could they only use it a little?" he asked.
"Well, they would be completely without it. Unless, they were close enough to the source of the power."
"And I'm guessing, " Isaac said. "That the source of the power is in this city we're going to."
"You're not as stupid as you look." she played. And as the silence fell over them, the cave dead-ended.