The Elvish weren't a cruel people...but they certainly weren't the most heartwarming race. As soon as we reached 10 years of age, we were locked into a magically barriered property for a year as we grew into our abilities and developed out powers. Basically, in the year that an Elf matures...from 10 years of age to 11 years of age that said elf was locked away in a 5 acre property by themselves for a year.
It sounded barbaric I know, I still think it is...but it's a bit different when you are living it. In this year of our development we were prone to intense mood swings, sporadic bursts of supernatural power and overall unpredictable magical behaviour. This way we were looked after yet also allowed to mature safely by ourselves whilst becoming independent functioning members of the Elvish society at the same time.
According to my makeshift calendar on the brick wall next to the back door of the quaint country cottage I had been living in, I had been in this place for 8 full moons...which meant I only had 2 months left in this strange sort of personal hell. It wasn't that my living conditions were barbaric...they were the complete opposite in fact. Somehow, probably when I was sleeping...all the supplies I could possibly were need were dropped off. Food and other necessary supplies were delivered daily...occasionally someone cleaned up and I was never bored thanks to the stunning gardens of the property and the natural looking perfectly conditioned pool that always seemed to be at an ideal temperature.
The barbaric thing about this whole situation was that when the Elvish were at our most vulnerable...we were left to ourselves for a year to basically grow up in isolation, a trial by fire if you will. It was like throwing a child into the deep end of a pool to teach them how to swim.
After 8 months of accidently setting things on fire, losing my temper on a daily basis...and healing my own self inflicted accidental injuries I was more than ready to be a full Elvish adult and be allowed back into society. Over the course of my time in isolation I had learnt quite a few things:
1. My unique abilities on top of the usual Elvish supernatural traits involved the ability to control fire, teleport ( often into hard surfaces at the moment) and to predict the weather
2. Despite my usually introverted nature I was finding after 8 months of isolation that I missed other Elves which was an incredible relevation in itself.
3. Even hobbies and relaxation got boring when that's all you ever did.
For the past month or so, I had settled into the same daily routine. Despite the boring nature of my life at the moment, it at least gave me some scrap of normality in this incredibly weird situation. As technology was non existant in this strange sort of quarantine, I based my time around the sun and the moon...around the movement of the stars. I rose at dawn, watched the sunrise as I swum in the pool and then had a hearty breakfast of pastries, fruit and strong Elvish coffee laced with lavender.
The rest of my day was spent in various ways. Some days I decided to partake in the various hobbies I had taken up here such as drawing and improving my swimming. If I wasn't in the mood to do this I usually trained like I had done back at home in improving my abilities, exceppt these abilities now included weather prediction, teleportation and the ability to control fire.
If I was really feeling out of it I would clean up which wasn't very often...although us Elvish were borderline neat freaks. It was one of those days were I really felt like doing nothing, I had sensed it was going to be a drizzly chilly and rainy day today so I hadn't actually planned on doing anything in particular anyways. I had gotten the chalk off my bedside table, ready to add another tally to the outside wall thanks to the full moon last night...yet when I went outside to add the mark I found that my makeshift calendar had disappeared.
At first I thought I was perhaps going a little crazy after being by myself for so long...but despite searching for a few hours I knew that the wall I had been taking my time tally on for the last 8 months had disappeared. I had no idea what to think...no idea what to do. In fact, I felt a little lost...as lame as it was to admit it, but that little tally had been keeping my mental health somewhat stable over the last little while.
Now that my countdown to my release was gone, I had no idea what to feel except for loneliness and dread. Was I to be forgotten about? Did I fail some sort of test? Was I going to be stuck by myself for the rest of my life? Would I ever see my family again?
It was as I was losing myself down this quickly spiralling hole of depressive and unhelpful thoughts that I was interupted by a warm and calming hand on my shoulder. Despite knowing that the stranger was attempting to be reassuring, considering that it was the first contact with another Elf in just over 8 months I reacted pretty reasonably I thought considering the circumstances...I accidently lit the man's hair on fire.
Flash forward a few hours and despite my little mishap I was on the way to seeing my family...I was on the way to a reunion with my loved ones and my intergration back into Elvish society. I had passed the test, I had made it...and now I was a fully functioning member of Elvish society...well I would be eventally, after the special dinner held in my honour for graduating into Adulthood.
Sighing in relief, I stretched out in the back of the solar powered hovercraft as I felt myself truly relax for the first time in a long time. I was finally going home, and despite what people said otherwise...home was definetly where the heart was. In this case, my heart belonged to my family...the people who had raised me...the people I loved more than anything and anyone else in the whole world.
As I looked out the window at the perfectly manicured lawns and pristine estates of Elvish suburbia I started flicking my fingers together, igniting the tiny flame that I could hover on my footsteps thanks to months of practice of my newfound ability. I couldn't wait to show them what I had discovered, I had proved myself an Elvish adult afterall.