1233 N Washington St.
New Hebron, California
Sapphira coughed and looked about feeling the heat of the fire around him even before his vision cleared enough to distinguish it. When he tried to move, he found the debris had pinned him down. He reached out with his mind and his awareness of the surrounding walls flared back to life. Though he didn’t know how long he’d been unconscious, it must not have been more than a few seconds.
He spent no time muddling over his vision, or dream or whatever the hell it had been. Though he wasn’t even sure it had been real, at the moment it was pretty much at the bottom of his list of priorities.
He grunted and pushed himself up, but even his enhanced strength was not enough to free him. Collapsing back into place, he smashed a fist down to the ground shattering a chunk of fallen sheet rock and sending shooting pains through his arm. He growled, and attempted to push the debris that had buried him away with his mind, but nothing happened.
Sapphira cursed under his breath attempting to shift his body and squirm out using nothing but his physical strength, but even that proved to be impossible. He was trapped.
“Goddamnit,” he cursed between gritted teeth.
He coughed and something stung his eyes. Smoke was building up in the narrow corridor and it was getting harder to breathe. He had to try something before it was too late.
He closed his eyes and pursed his lips reaching out to the child still hiding in the room beyond. She quivered in fear, still alive, but not for much longer. Sapphira needed to act. He clenched his fists and concentrated on the child. If he couldn’t free himself perhaps there was a way he might at least help her.
At first nothing seemed to happen, but then his awareness of his surroundings fade away. When he opened his eyes again, he appeared to be in another part of the apartment building, but he could feel the weight of the debris on his body. He knew, perhaps through some extension of his ability, that he his form was being projected into the room, but that’s not to say he understood how or why.
There was a whimper, and all at once he understood. He cast his eyes around the room, looking for the source, but saw nothing. The room belonged to a young girl, fire had engulfed most of the walls, but he imagined that the occupant had covered it in bright-colored posters of boy bands and other pop stars. It would have gone well with the bright pink princess bedding and frilly decor.
It came again, this time it seemed to originate from the bed itself. He dropped his knees and leaned down to peer under it and sure enough there she was.
She didn’t react to his presence, but rather lay there, her whole body trembling, huddled beneath the bed with tear-stained cheeks. She couldn’t have been much older than eight or nine and the thought she might not make it out of the building tore him up inside.
“Sweet thing,” he called out and winced. He’d called his daughter that when she’d been around that age. The girl’s eyes snapped open, and she stared at him with a pair of startling green eyes. She didn’t speak, but slunk back closer toward the wall.
“Honey,” he smiled and held his hand out. “You can’t stay under there. It’s not safe.”
The girl stayed in place. He bowed his head, let out a long sigh and looked back up meeting her gaze. “Please, come out. I promise, I won’t hurt you.”
He didn’t know what convinced her, but when she crawled out, she looked up staring into Sapphira’s eyes. “Are you a super hero?”
“Something like that. Listen, honey, you need to get out of this room. If you can make it out to the hallway, I cleared a path and you should be able to get out.” He reached out to touch her shoulders, but he let out a growl of frustration when his hands passed right through her. Although, the ceiling had collapsed, it was still her best bet. He’d already made a path into the hotel and if the fire hadn’t consumed it, it would be the most direct route out. She could climb over the debris in the corridor, but more than that perhaps he hoped she would help free him.
The girl didn’t move, but stared at him with those big beautiful eyes. “I’m not here. I’d love to help, but I’m just a projection. Please, honey.”
This time he reached out with his mind, attempting to press upon her the urgency of what he was telling her and with a suddenness that startled him the girl gasped and took off running right through him.
He looked around the room before a sharp burst of pain in his chest and he watched his surrounding’s blur and fade around him.
When he found himself in the corridor again, it was only to discover that his situation had gotten worse. More debris had collapsed atop him and the left side of body was throbbing in agony. Under other conditions he might have sensed the extend of his injuries, but again his abilities failed him.
He tried again, to free his body, both by mundane means and with his telekinesis, but he couldn’t muster the strength necessary nor invoke his powers. He waited for the girl to come still clinging to the hope she might free him by shifting around some debris, but either she’d found other means of escape or the fire had trapped her.
And so he lay there, waiting for his end to come. Despite what Ashtar had done to him and his desire to see his wife and daughter again, he found, that he did not welcome death. He didn’t seem to have much choice in the matter.
He saw no hope for rescue, and so he clenched his eyes shut, waiting for the end to come. It wd have been worth it if he’d known if the girl had escaped alive.