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The Fire Chronicle (The Books of Beginning, #2) The Fire Chronicle by John Stephens
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“The point of life isn't to avoid pain. The point of life is to be alive! To feel things. That means the good and the bad. There'll be pain. But also joy, and friendship and love. And it's worth it, believe me.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“Dragons are notable for their lust for gold, not a bad quality taken in moderation. Dragons are immune to fire, obviously. All dragons are terrifically vain, indeed as to who is more vain, a dragon or an elf, I would not want to be the one to decide. Hint: an elf. A dragon should never be engaged in conversation as they are inveterate liars and tricksters, though if you're actually talking to a dragon, you're pretty much toast anyway. Never, ever call a dragon a worm, no matter how much they're asking for it.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“He remembered the darkness and despair she'd suffered during her long years as a prisoner, but he also recalled the deep, unquenchable joy she took from the world around her; and he knew that given the choice, Wilamena would suffer all she had and more rather than sacrifice one day of being alive.

It was just as his father had said. She chose life, all of it.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“He was crazy, Michael thought, but he appeared to be nice-crazy, and not I'll-kill-you-I'll-kill-you crazy.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“Don’t be stupid,” the girl said in exactly the way Emma might’ve. “Just ’cause you can do some magic don’t mean you can shoot lightning outta your nose.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“I don't know what happened to your parents or why they did what they did. But in all the world, I could have wished for no daughter than you".”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“I know exactly who he is. Who he is destined to become. But you can still save him. Love him, child. Love him as he already loves you.”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle
“Dr. Pym,” Emma huffed, “what happened back there? What’s going on?” “I told you that we are here to see a man. What I did not say was that I have been searching for this individual for nearly a decade. Only recently did I finally track him to this village. You heard me asking the signora how to find his house.” “That’s it? That’s what made her drop the plate?” “Yes, it appears that he is regarded by the locals as something of a devil. Or perhaps the Devil. The signora was a bit flustered.” “Is he dangerous?” Michael asked. Then he added, “Because I’m the oldest now, and I’m responsible for Emma’s safety.” “Oh, please,” Emma groaned. “I wouldn’t say he’s dangerous,” the wizard said. “At least, not very.” They hiked on, following a narrow, twisting trail. They could hear goats bleating in the distance, the bells around their necks clanking dully in the still air. Stalks of dry grass scratched at the children’s ankles. The light was dying, and soon Michael could no longer see the town behind them. The trail ended at a badly maintained rock wall. Affixed to the wall was a piece of wood bearing a message scrawled in black paint. “What’s it say?” Emma asked. The wizard bent forward to translate. “It says, ‘Dear Moron’—oh my, what a beginning—‘you are about to enter private property. Trespassers will be shot, hanged, beaten with clubs, shot again; their eyeballs will be pecked out by crows, their livers roasted’—dear, this is disgusting, and it goes on for quite a while.…” He skipped to the bottom. “ ‘So turn around now, you blithering idiot. Sincerely, the Devil of Castel del Monte.’ ” Dr. Pym straightened up. “Not very inviting, is it? Well, come along.” And he climbed over the wall. Michael”
John Stephens, The Fire Chronicle