Hands shaking, Kael drew the sigil as wide as he could, its intricate overlapping patterns turning the cave floor into a glowing tapestry of gold dust in the firelight. It took hours as he checked and rechecked the schematics. Each line had to be perfect or the summoning would fail. Or worse.
By the time he finished, the storm outside had reached its full furor. The afternoon’s far-off rumbles had turned into a night of crashing gales, pushing Kael’s nerves to the breaking point. Everything in him screamed to run, to abandon this selfish undertaking, to let her go.
But he held his ground. He may never have another chance. It was now or never.
Kael raised his trembling arms, one hand over the glittering circle, the other stretched towards the storm. His incantation was drowned out by the wind, but no matter. The tingle of electricity in his fingertips let him know it was working.
The next bolt of lightning veered off course and passed through Kael’s waiting hand, across his heart, down his opposite arm, and slammed into the sigil, fusing the stone into golden glass and filling the air with smoke.
Kael hit the ground, his body finally still.
Until an electric hand touched his shoulder.
The wizard jolted awake. Then he smiled, shaking now not with fear, but with joy.
Kael took his mother’s crackling hand for the first time since she’d been banished from this plane. And they stepped out into the storm—together.
This story is part of No Novel November, a daily microfiction challenge. If you'd like to know more and/or join in, click here.