The only thing Rhen knew of her father was that he had been a soldier. The temple her mother had served was a common pilgrimage site for those who lived by the sword - a place for refuge and comfort in times of war. His legion had taken residence there for a month, seeking protection by isolation while plague ravaged the outside world. Rhen's parents had met in secret almost every night, both of them disobeying their vows and neither of them caring. Her father was long gone by the time Rhen was born. It was unlikely he would ever know she existed. She remembered her mother like a dream. Of some details she was quite sure - her pale yellow hair, the scent of sage and other herbs, the tattooed symbols on the backs of her hands marking her rank and title as servant to her goddess and prisoner to her superiors. Other details avoided her like wisps of smoke - what she wore, the sound of her voice, even her face. What she remembered most were the priests who killed her. (This description is an excerpt from Beginning Stones: Children of Fire Part II) Author's Note: This is the first of what I hope will be several origin stories for my published series, Children of Fire. All of these are designed to be read as a stand-alone short story, but if you would like to know more about the word in which they take place you can find my published works through my website (www.maryfonvielle.net), Amazon, or Smashwords. Thank you for reading!