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Fire
Fire2-graceling-trilogy-9614615-370-459
Title
Monster
Vital Statistics
Full Name Fire
Family Tess (grandmother)
Cansrel (father)
Jessa (mother)
Brigan (husband)
Hanna (step-daughter)
Age 17 (Fire)
67 (Bitterblue)
Gender Female
Hair Color Red with orange and pink; fire colored
Eye Color Bright green
Height N/A
Status Alive
Other
Grace None
Weapon/Skill Bow and arrows

Monster ability: Can influence/control minds; telepathy

Allegiance Brocker, Archer, Queen Roen, King Nash, Prince Brigan, Hanna, Garan and Clara, Tess, Mila
Appears Fire
Bitterblue

Fire, or in the language of the Seven Realms, Bir, is the main character of Fire. She is a female monster with mesmerizing red, pink, orange and gold hair. Fire is both instantly hated and adored. Her best friend since early childhood was Archer.

HistoryEdit

Fire's mother, Jessa, was a palace servant whom the human monster Cansrel bedded and forgot about. Fire was born with hair so beautiful that Jessa named her Fire. When Cansrel came to kill the baby, not wanting another monster to undermine his authority, he instead chose to let her live. He took her to his estate and put her into the care of Donal. Their neighbor, Brocker, took an interest in Fire's education and taught her to use her powers sparingly, which was at odds with Cansrel's pressure to use it as much as possible.

Cansrel gave Fire two gifts: a fiddle, which she treasures, and a horse, Small, whom Fire adores. Fire chose Small, a rather drab and dull-looking horse, over a stunning black stallion because Small did not fear or admire her for her monsterness, and instead loved her for her gentleness. Small was delivered to her estate in the same cart as a monster mountain lion, which terrified Small and infuriated Fire.

Fire was friends with Archer since childhood, even giving him the nickname "Archer". When she was fourteen, she entered a relationship with him. She was fifteen when she killed her father.

FireEdit

While in the forest, Fire was accidentally shot by a poacher, a stranger on the estate. She tricked him into bringing her to her home, where the poacher was apprehended and later assassinated. Fire's wounds were tended to, but remained painful and hindering. Despite this, she insists on accompanying Archer when he goes to Queen Roen's fortress after another stranger, assassinated by the same archer, was found on her lands.

As they arrived at the queen's fortress, they encountered a contigent of the king's army, with both King Nash and Prince Brigan present. Fire was present when Nash and Brigan arrived and was momentarily stunned, not bowing, because in the tricky lighting and the look of hatred on his face she momentarily mistook Brigan for Cansrel, and was paralyzed by shock and fear. Before she passed out, she heard Brigan suggest throwing her to the two hundred monster raptors outside the fortress, but Archer aggressively told him they'd have to throw Archer himself as well.

When Fire woke Archer was there, and they slept with each other; afterwards, Archer told Fire to stay with him, as it wasn't safe for her. Fire left anyway and went to Small's stall, where she camped out in the shadows and fell asleep.

She was woken by a confidential conversation between Roen and Brigan, where Brigan revealed he had doubts about any royal right to the kingdom Nash held, due to sharing some personality aspects with their father, King Nax. Brigan then expressed hatred for Fire because she was Cansrel's daughter, but Fire found herself feeling affection for him because he then petted and spoke to her horse (who is, in some ways, Fire's true best friend) so kindly and gently.

On her way back to Archer's room, Fire encountered a tipsy Nash, who immediately began kissing and groping her; using her mental powers, she made him stop and apologize. She continued on, but was assaulted by Brigan next. Instead of making advances on her, he instead ordered and warned her to not seduce Nash and trap his mind like Cansrel had Nax's. They argued, and Brigan expressed regret that Cansrel had committed suicide because he had wanted to kill Cansrel himself. In his rough treatment of her, Brigan re-opened Fire's wound, causing her to bleed.

In her temper, Fire said the most hurtful thing she could think of: Brigan, for actively wanting to hurt someone, is the true monster here, not her. And she pulled away and finally reached Archer's rooms, where she changed into one of his long-sleeved shirts to hide the bruises Brigan had left on her wrists.

The next morning, a neighboring village was under attack and had sent an urgent request for aid; unfortunately, most of the king's soldiers had just moved on, and their replacements hadn't arrived yet, meaning there was a total of fifty soldiers to send in support…but only if any of them could get through the two hundred monster raptors waiting outside of Roen's fortress.

Fire secretly devised a plan to ride out and use her hair—which reveals her as a monster to the raptors, and thus more desirable—to provoke the raptors into chasing her instead. The plan worked, but as Fire rode Small frantically back toward the gates of the fortress, she felt the soldiers hesitate, feeling indebted for her suicidal heroics. She contacted their commander, Brigan, to tell him that if he stayed behind to help her, then what might be her final act would go to waste. The soldiers left her to the raptors, and Fire barely made it inside the fortress gates alive, she and Small sustaining some claw wounds.

Fire was more bothered by the scarring to Small's back and hindquarters than her own scarring, and camped out his in stall again. She soon after returned to Archer's estate with him, and two months passed.

One day, Brigan and an escort of twenty soldiers arrived to ask Fire to use her powers to question a man who was caught in the king's chambers. Brigan told Fire that though Nash had framed it as an order, Brigan was more than willing to return to King's City without her; however, Fire, was drawn to the idea of seeing the great city she was born in, and leaving behind the feeling of being locked up on Archer's lands.

Archer was, of course, upset that she was leaving, but Fire forgave his harsh words, though she refused to bed him before she left. The twenty soldiers Brigan brought with him were handpicked for their skills at guarding their minds against her, and for their integrity. Fire slowly grew close to them, particularly their leader, Musa, as they traveled to King's City.

However, Fire was still frightened and wary of Brigan and Brigan still hateful and wary of her in return. This only changed when one of the men in the army destroyed Fire's cherished fiddle, devastating her—but in her grief, she mentally asked Brigan to not hit the man, as he'd intended to, and Brigan had listened. Not only had he listened, but he secured a hankerchief for her, and had shown concern for her homely horse again. Heartened by this evidence of kindness, Fire overcame her fear of him, though she remained shy.

After her fiddle was destroyed, one of the soldiers came to give her his own fiddle. Fire accepted the gift and played in front of the army again to show that they couldn't stop her from playing, she's wasn't scared of them, and that she wouldn't be the object they wanted her to be.

They reach King's City and were greeted by a crowd of civilians on the streets, throwing flowers for them. The people realized who Fire was and began to chant her name.

Fire goes to her room to clean up, and soon confronted by King Nash, who immediately tried to kiss her again. Brigan arrived and pulled him off, scolding him harshly and dragging him away. Fire had to see Nash again soon after, to report on what she could sense from the prisoner's mind. A mental struggle between Nash and Fire occurred, wherein Nash resisted his urge to touch her instead, reveling in feeling the mental pressure of her in his head, restraining him. When Fire refused to use her powers to actively dig through the prisoner's mind, tensions snapped and Nash backhanded her, cutting her cheek with his distinctive square emerald ring. Fire left immediately.

Princess Clara took her on a tour of the palace, and she met Clara's twin brother Prince Garan and Hanna playing in his study, whom she presumed to be his daughter. Garan, while not outright hostile, made it clear he did not trust her. Fire sought him out soon after their first meeting when she witnessed a fight between Hanna and eight others, and realized that Hanna was Brigan's daughter, not Garan's. She managed to bond with Garan and meet his girlfriend, Sayre.

For a lack of something to do, Fire toured King's City and began to help out teaching children how to deal with monsters such as bugs and raptors. She also grew close to Hanna, and was with her when Brigan returned. Seeing Brigan interact with his daughter pushed Fire's feelings for him into romantic feelings.

But now that Brigan was back, Fire had a choice to make: so far, she had been no help to anyone in King's City, completely refusing to use her powers on prisoners despite the pressure that Clara, Garan, and Nash put on her. With Brigan back, she assumed that he undoubtedly intended to return her to her frustrating, empty life back at Archer's estate.

That night, they met by accident on the roof, both on their habitual stargazing walks. Fire asked for Brigan's opinion on whether she should abuse her powers to forcibly extract information, even if it was for the good of the kingdom, and Brigan responded that he would be happy if she stayed, and sorry about what they asked of her. The two of them went on to make a promise: if either thought the other had grown too comfortable with their power—Fire with her monster powers, Brigan with his power as commander of the army—they would tell the other. Before they depart from each other's company, Fire thanks him for the fiddle he had bought her on the first day in King's City.

The next morning, Fire was examining her reflection in a mirror, something she hated to do; she asked herself what she was for. Nash, Garan, and Brigan passed by, and upon catching sight of the sword at Brigan's belt, Fire understood that she was not her father just as Brigan was not his, and they both must wield the power they have for good. Fire decided to use her powers to question spies, but she had a few rules: if a prisoner had done nothing wrong, she would not use her powers on him, but if her presence made him a little more talkative, so be it; if a prisoner had been mistreated—underfed, hit—Fire refused to use her powers on them.

The information Fire gleaned was mostly useless tidbits about Mydogg and Gentian, and some of it was completely false, as the two warlords began to feed their people false information to fool Fire with.

Fire began to sense a mysterious presence that came and went; once, while asking Brigan for permission to tell Hanna about monthly cycles, she sensed it and it faded. She mentioned it to Brigan, who misunderstood and asked if it had come from his mind.

Fire informed him that she had never once sensed anything from his mind because his shielding was so strong and constant, and looking pleased with himself, Brigan experimentally loosened his shields until he could send a feeling to Fire, which pleased her inordinately. He then suggested she try to take over his mind, which frightened her. Seeing her distressed refusal, Brigan apologized, and Fire confided to him that she had once thought, if he asked, she would take over his mind to help him sleep. Brigan was rendered speechless for a moment, and then said it wouldn't be fair, as there would be no one to help her fall asleep afterwards.

Brigan received a summons and left, and Fire returned to her rooms—to find her guards in disarray, their minds filled with fog. A supposed representative of the king had tried to get into her rooms claiming he was to inspect the view, but dispite the mind influence at work, they successfully rebuffed him. Musa in particular had retained a clear mind and described the man for her—and Fire realized the man was the mysterious assassin archer.

As Fire began to describe the archer to all of the prisoners she questioned to see if they recognized him (one did, suggesting it could be a rapist named Jod), her friend Archer arrived at King's City. Though Fire was happy to see him, she had the unhappy duty to break off their romantic relationship, upsetting him deeply; Hanna had the misfortune to stumble across them directly after the act, and Fire mentally told Archer that if he took his rage out on the child, she would never speak with him again.

It was the start of a friendship between Hanna and Archer, which would eventually lead to the five-year-old declaring her intention to marry Archer, she was so impressed by his archery. Fire even mentioned to Brigan that if Hanna had been twelve years older, she would not have allowed the two to meet.

During that conversation, Fire sensed the mind of a strange boy with one red eye and one gray strangling a rat near them. After Brigan left, she held a brief conversation with the boy, in which he told her that he wasn't actually hurting the rat as he strangled it, but Fire did not believe his lying. It was only after he'd left that Fire realized that he had a mind twisting ability like her, and was the one who had filled the assassin archer's mind with fog, but by that point the boy had already left King's City with Cutter.

When Archer discovered one of Mydogg's spies, it was up to Fire to question him; however, the spy was an old friend of Brocker's and could guard his mind effectively. All Fire was able to get out of him was what he knew of Gentian's plans, including the fact that Gentian and his son Gunner would be attending the January gala at King's City while their assassins tried to take out Nash and Brigan. She also learned that Gentian intended to simultaneously attack Fort Flood with his army, and that Mydogg's sister, Murgda, would be attending the gala as well for unknown reasons.

As preparations to counter Gentian began, Fire learned that both Princess Clara and Fire's fifteen-year-old guard, Mila, were impregnated by Archer. This fostered jealousy in Fire, not because of their relationships to Archer, but because they were pregnant—Fire felt herself desperately yearning for children and knew that she could no longer trust herself to never create a monster child. In the light of this, she took herbs that would render her barren, making her violently ill for a week and upset. Brigan returned to King's City near the end of the week and she told him what she had done.

They planned the assassinations of Gentian, Gunner, and Murgda at the gala; Fire felt that she should be the one to do it, as she could glean information from them before they died. Clara and Garan doubted she'd actually be able to go through with it until Archer callously revealed, in a fit of anger, that Fire had killed her own father, Cansrel. Fire immediately left the room and sat out in the snow until Tess, Hanna's caretaker, took her inside after Fire numbly told her that she'd staged Cansrel's suicide. Tess gave her a letter from Brigan, in which Brigan revealed that he'd known all along, as Brocker had told him the truth before he had left with Fire for King's City. Tess also revealed to Fire that she is Fire's grandmother.

At the gala, Fire found that she could easily mold Gentian's mind, but Gunner's mind was more difficult and Murgda's impossible. Fire led Gentian and Gunner to believe that she was willing to join their side in the war and brought them to an isolated room to pry into their secrets; however, the effort of doing this combined with the mental monitoring she had been doing all night made her exhausted, and she almost passed out until Brigan sent her a feeling of love, reinvigorating her and giving her the will to go meet with Gentian and Gunner.

She discovered that Gentian and Mydogg had allied against Nash and the true details of the coming attack. She then called mentally to Brigan, who climbed in by the balcony and coldly killed the two of them. Fire was involuntarily horrified at the slaughter, shaming Brigan, but Fire assured him that this was the part of him that kept him alive, and she'd much rather him alive than dead.

Her role done, Fire was going to check on Hanna when she was attacked and kidnapped by the boy with the red eye and gray eye. His men brought her by boat to Cutter's house, but Fire realized that though the boy could skillfully control minds, he was blind to them. She took advantage of this and procured a tranquilizer dart. While at Cutter's house, she found out that the mysterious assassin archer, Jod, was in fact the rapist who had impregnated Archer's mother with Archer, and that Archer himself died at Jod's arrow. Fire set the house on fire to burn Archer's body.

One of Cutter's horses, a river mare, took an interest in Fire and carried her away. The boy, who had survived, followed her and tried to persuade her to become his partner to take over the Dells. Fire's horse kicked him in his red eye and Fire threw him into the mountains.

As Fire grew more ill and frostbitten, the horse carried Fire to people who ended up saving her life. She woke to Musa's face, who had managed to track Fire here. Fire went with Musa to one of the camps, as war was fully underway. They arrived the day Brigan was set to leave, but Fire refused to look at him, fearing her feelings for him in the wake of her terrible grief for Archer. She didn't want to love and lose again. She told him that she didn't love him, even when he confessed his love for her.

Fire remained listless and grief-stricken, crying silent tears often, until Garan snapped some sense back into her, persuading her to ease the pain of dying soldiers in the hopsital wing. However, when Nash arrived at camp, she treated him just as coldly as she had Brigan until he revealed that Brigan had asked for Nash to bring Fire her horse, Small. Fire immediately rushed to see Small and cried violently, finally finding some peace. Everyone she knew, regardless of whether they were a soldier, was going to die.

Brocker and Roen had also arrived at the camp, and as she heard Brocker speak indulgently of Brigan's skill, she realized that Brocker had had an affair with Roen, creating Brigan. She was initially furious to see her perfect image of him shattered and to realize that the burdens Brigan was shouldering were not his to shoulder, but she forgave Brocker and Roen. Also realizing that Brigan was dealing with the stress of war, her continued silence, and the new knowledge of his parentage and the loss of his unknowing brother Archer, Fire finally wrote him a letter, admitting she was in love with him.

When she moved to Brigan's camp, she set to work in the hospital wing, but immediately ran at kissed Brigan when he entered. That night they slept together, but were later wakened when Brigan's squire arrived with news from Mydogg: he wanted to come to a truce. Of course, by "truce" Mydogg really was setting a trap.

Fire accompanied the forces to the truce meeting, but was unable to find the treachery until it was too late: one of Nash's own archers shot him in the back. Fire used her powers to help Nash hang on, and he ultimately survived. Brigan also won the ensuing battle, and thus the war.

Even after the war finished, Brigan was unable to stay with Fire and Hanna often. Roen gave Fire her "queen's house." Fire got surgery to remove her dead, frostbitten fingers, which Brigan was not present for, though Hanna, Nash, and Garan were. Though Fire continued to question prisoners for Clara and Garan, she preferred to work in the infirmary or hospital.

People overwhelmed her with praise for her exaggerated role in the war, and understanding that she had become a symbol to them, Fire accepted this. However, it also made her a feel a pressure like she must be some perfect person, leading to a confrontation with Brigan in which she made sure he knew that she was going to be sad and irritable and imperfect, however perfectly beautiful she looked. Brigan reassured her by telling her that he first started falling in love with her when he saw her grief over her fiddle, and told her that her sadness was one of the things that made her beautiful to him.

Fire attended Archer's funeral at Brocker's estate, where Mila asked Fire for advice concerning her burgeoning relationship with Nash. Because they did not have a body to burn, they burnt Archer's long bows. Fire also put her ruined fiddle, a gift from Cansrel, on the pyre so that she could burn it in mourning for him and forgive herself for murdering him.

BitterblueEdit

Lady Fire, now an old woman, returns with Katsa to Monsea after Katsa found a tunnel to the Dells. She helped Queen Bitterblue see that she was strong, and meant to be queen. Lady Fire stayed in Monsea until January when she left to return to the Dells.

CharacterEdit

Fire is a mentally strong character with a unique ability to read minds, alter thoughts and feelings of others, and send thoughts and feelings of her own to others as well. She does not enjoy altering or invading minds due to her compassion for people and her feelings of guilt for the murder of her father Cansrel. She does however take some pleasure in having wordless conversations and being able to soothe away restlessness, with permission.

Physical AppearanceEdit

Fire's hair is her most prominent feature. It is described as being copper, red, orange, scarlet, pink and a variety of those shades. She is stunningly beautiful and everyone is drawn to her monstrous beauty. She has green eyes and a womanly body. Fire has scars from daggers on a forearm and her stomach, a scar from an arrow on her back, scars from wolf's teeth on one wrist, claw marks from raptors on her shoulders, back, and the back side of her hair, and more.  She has brown skin, and is said to be "browner-skinned than the most sun-darkened Lienid Bitterblue had ever seen." 

RelationshipsEdit

CansrelEdit

Fire's relationship with Cansrel was complicated and confusing. As a child, she felt that she had two fathers, Brocker and Cansrel, who told her opposite things: Brocker that she should avoid using her powers, and Cansrel that she had the right to use them. Cansrel would shamelessly tell her stories of the terrible things he had done with his powers as encouragement to use her own. He would even let her into his mind to practice using her powers, shaping his thoughts. Fire described his mind as feeling slick like an eel and voracious, a sea monster that would pull her under. She would struggle to warm and soften his mind, to bring to him compassion and pity, and she suspected that the contentment she could bring him was one of his favorite drugs.

When she was young, Fire desperately yearned for Cansrel's company, as with him she didn't feel like a freak, and he could offer her lessons that nobody else could. But for all his manic joy and affection, she was aware of his danger—when she was four, her dog Twy nipped her, drawing blood, and Cansrel forced him to throw himself against stones. The next morning Twy was gone, and though Cansrel said he could have run away, Fire suspected the truth and learned to lie when her father asked after anyone who was treating her badly.

As the political situation worsened, Cansrel's visited grew farther between but individually longer. Fire began to feel conflicted about him dreading his visits and the loose women, monsters, drugs, and mercurial moods he brought with him, but feeling dreadfully lonely after his departures.

As Cansrel became obsessed with killing Prince Brigan, who was key to holding the Dells together, Fire knew that she had to stop him. Using her powers, she tricked him into thinking one of the monsters in his menagerie was herself as a baby. As she watched, Cansrel opened the door to the cage, cooing, and died violently. She felt immense guilt and lashed out at everyone for weeks afterwards; even after years she had not forgiven herself, until she burned the destroyed fiddle Cansrel had given her.

It was from Cansrel's example that Fire decided that she would never have a monster child; she could never risk unleashing another Cansrel on the world.

BrockerEdit

Brocker took an interest in his neighbor estate, where the monster baby Fire was being raised. Brocker aided in her education and emphasized the need for her to respect others and not use her powers thoughtlessly. He was forthright about the terrible, twisted acts of her father and insisted that Fire was completely different than him; Fire often wished that she were Brocker's daughter, not Cansrel's.

ArcherEdit

Fire began her relationship with Archer as his best friend, even giving him the nickname of Archer. When Fire was fourteen, they engaged in a sexual relationship that continued until she was eighteen. However, after accepting that Archer was possessive and jealous of the attention she received from other males, Fire finally ended the relationship. It is clear Archer is still very attracted to her. She considers Archer her dearest friend and is deeply distraught by his death towards the end of the book.

BriganEdit

When Prince Brigan meets Fire, he initially dislikes her. He seems to believe she is the same sort of monster as her father, who drove who he believed to be his own father, King Nax, to death. He guards his mind against her and keeps his distance. However, after she shows emotion after having her fiddle destroyed, he comforts her and they begin to form a friendship. Soon, they become lovers. Throughout the book, he must leave Fire to go to war, which causes problems between the two. At the end of the book, Brigan marries Fire.

SmallEdit

Small is Fire's horse and a gift to her from her father Cansrel. Upon choosing the horses, Fire selected Small instead of larger and more magnifcent black horses because he neither cowered nor admired her monstrous beauty. Small became Fire's loyal companion and she often went to him for comfort, such as when her fiddle is broken. It is also shown she cares deeply for him when he is the first thing she asks about when she rides out to distract the flying monsters from the soldiers. Small seems to return Fire's loyalty.

HannaEdit

Fire has a great deal of love towards Hanna, especially after the princess started a fight because some kids badmouthed Fire. Hanna also sees Fire as an older sister/mother figure who she can relate and talk to. Fire also explained to her the female anatomy believing she was much smarter than her age and listened to Hanna talk about horses with much patience. Near the end of the book, Fire and Hanna spend much time together and consider each other family. Though Fire claims that Hanna feels some jealousy towards her for being with Brigan so much, she still tries to protect Fire in her own way by hitting Fire on the face to swat away a monster bug.

Trivia Edit

  • In Bitterblue it is described that Fire has dark brown skin, she is depicted on most cover art as being inaccurately light skin.

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