The boy, ash blond hair falling into his eyes making him look like an angel, stood there in the schoolroom, and looked at the notebooks he had carefully piled up.
He swung his arm and smiled as the top of the Zippo lighter went kerklick, kerklack. He did it again and his smile grew brighter.
And then, with almost loving care, he held the flame close to the paper. As it caught, a light entered into his eyes. And he breathed in the smoke as if it was incense in a church.
He breathed in deeply and shuddered as the fire hit his blood and rushed headlong into his heart.
He began to breathe faster, to keep with the pace of his creation. As his eyes grew wider so did the fire and with that the fire in his heart grew.
There was a sound behind him.
There was a teacher, her twinset and pearls ill-matched with the fear on her face. The remains of her broken coffee cup traced circles on the linoleum.
She wasn’t meant to be here. Nobody was meant to be here.
The fire danced in his eyes, giving his face a different, almost devilish, cast.
“St. John,” she stuttered, “St. John, is that you?”
She got no further.
The fire leapt like a cat. He leapt like a cat. He leapt like a cat and danced around her tugging at her clothes, pulling at her hair. He stroked her with a thousand fiery fingers.
And then the fire drew back and danced around him like impatient, inquisitive kittens.
And he felt good.