Pyrokinesis is an ability of witches to conjure, manipulate and extinguish fire through their mind. Witches commonly use this basic power to light candles and can also use liquids (e.g. alcohol, water, etc.) as an accelerant; as such can be used in destructive offensive magic. This power can also be activated through a spell though commonly performed non-verbally, is evoked through the Latin-based term "Incendia". Controlling or extinguishing flames, which requires more focus, typically require a verbal spell.
It is a subsection of Elemental Control.
Psychics, specifically only Arcadius, seem to possess this ability as well, though through unknown means, as it has not been confirmed through the use of magic.
Throughout The Vampire Diaries
This is probably the power Bonnie uses most frequently. She first learned how to control this power in Family Ties, and has used it many a time since. She has used this power to light candles often, as fire and the other elements are used by witches to help fuel their magic. She has also unknowingly used pyrokinesis in You're Undead to Me; Tiki was rude to a customer at the car wash they were hosting for the cheerleading squad, which made her so angry she went into a trance. In her trance, she caught the water on the ground on fire, which spread to a car, which was destroyed. Like at the car wash she often uses water as an accelerant; in Fool Me Once, she threw a glass of water on Ben McKittrick to ignite him. She also used it in Brave New World to attempt to set Damon Salvatore on fire. She used her mind to turn on a nearby hose, incapacitated him by giving him one aneurysm after another, and lit the stream of water on fire to ignite him. Bonnie activates this power similarly to her passive Pain Infliction by giving a strong stern gaze at the object that she intends to ignite.
Bonnie also showed a strong use of this ability during her time in the Prison World. In Yellow Ledbetter, Bonnie attempts the variant spell, though she is unsuccessful as she has still not been able to regain her magic. In Welcome to Paradise, Bonnie finally regained her magic; by concentrating she lit a single candle and then preceded to turn her attention towards Kai. Using the variant incantation, she was able to create two large barriers of fire, by igniting alcohol, to stop Kai from hurting and killing Damon. In Let Her Go, after crossing into the 1903 prison world dimension, she trekked through the snow to the Salvatore house and used the original incantation to set candles and the fireplace ablaze to warm herself. In The Downward Spiral, used the passive form of this power to burn a guy at the rave she was at while looking for Caroline. She reacts violently with her magic due to her time in the prison world with Kai, as the rave dancer was persistent and forceful towards her to dance with him and he attempted to kiss her after she refused him. Later, after seeing Kai for the first time since she escaped the prison world of her own accord, she was furious that Damon had even brought him to see her. This was most evident that she ignited her dorm fireplace with a burst of fire with a mere thought and outstretched hand gesture; her rage fueling her magic.
In Kill 'Em All, Bonnie uniquely used the Motus spell to extinguish a small fire, using it as a reflex. Though the spell is used to enact the verbal form of telekinesis, she adapted it to snuff out a piece of paper that caught fire as Rayna was drawing the locations of the released phoenix stone vampires.In We're Planning a June Wedding, Bonnie adapted her ancestor's spell to manipulate hellfire, as well as taught it to Lizzie and Josie, in order to control and manipulate the fire of an explosion during Stefan and Caroline's wedding to protect themselves. The spell protected them from the smoke and heat of the fire as the magic wrapped around them. Bonnie then, using her magic, directed the residual fires, that spanned the building, into a focal point and out through the fireplace chimney. In I Was Feeling Epic, Bonnie performed the variant incantation to manipulate and control hellfire in order to contain and draw the hellfire from Mystic Falls down into the underground tunnels to the Armory in order to destroy Katherine and back to hell, destroying everything along with it. As the fires reached her, she was able to hold it off though her power waned. She claimed that it wasn't her time and Enzo appeared, telling her to keep fighting and that she was never alone. The spirits of other Bennett witches aided her in her spell and saved the town.
Jonas once used this ability on the bar in the Mystic Grill, and used the spilled alcohol as an accelerant before setting it alight. He activated this power by giving a strong, stern gaze at the bar which then immediately set on fire. It is also possible he caused more fires afterwards because after Caroline came in, there were quite a few more small fires lit than there was earlier.
During her short time on the show, Greta used this power the most out of all of her witchcraft abilities. She notably used it to light fires so that she and Elena could see the site of the sacrifice at the end of The Last Day. She also used this power to create three large rings of fire to contain Elena, Jules and Jenna. The circles were spelled to rise in intensity if the person inside it attempted to escape. Greta activated this power by raising her hand and splaying her fingers.
In The End of the Affair, Gloria uses this basic power to stop Klaus' attack upon Damon, who was nearly killed within her bar. While a loyal witch to Klaus, she tells him "not in my bar, you take it outside" as she didn't want her bar destroyed for their petty squabbles. Not long later, she is seen interrogating Stefan, containing him with her magical concoction of herbs to subdue him, she channels multiple candles laid out is a circular design all across the floor and table tops around her and Stefan.
The ancient witch Qetsiyah, also known as Tessa, used this in Original Sin. After she revealed about her past to Stefan, she goes about describing herself to him. While doing so, she drags her finger across the wall producing blue fire trailing behind her. This is the first time that fire produced from a witch has been a different color. This is most likely in part due to the emotions she felt while describing herself to Stefan, and that "many things fuel a witch's power" which could include emotions or because she was just an extremely powerful witch. Later, while performing her Mind-linking spell, she causes the circle of herbs to catch fire, aiding her in her spell. Once the spell was complete and Silas's mental powers had been rendered useless, the flames were extinguished.
Silas, the second most ancient and supposedly powerful witch, has used this power once after regaining the use of his magic by ingesting the cure from Katherine Pierce's blood. He is one of the only few witches to have produced fire from his hands, specifically his fingertips, which seemed to be relatively effortless.
Kai showed proficiency in pyrokinesis despite being born without magic. He first showed using it in Black Hole Sun, where he non-verbally ignited a portion of a kitchen counter and chair near Damon by siphoning Bonnie's magic to prove a point. In I Alone, he used it once again to completely destroy the ascendant where he was able to sustain the fire and manipulated it to continually spread on Elena's arm. It only ceased when he was thrown into the anti-magic barrier. In Christmas Through Your Eyes, he appeared to have forgotten the spell, asking Jo if it Incendia the fire spell. Though, it was unsure if it was said in jest.
Valerie Tulle, Nora Hildegard and Mary Louise showed proficiency in casting fire spells especially in unison. This is shown during the award ceremony to promote youngsters into deputies where they set the whole area on fire in retaliation to the attack on them earlier that day. They start chanting a spell, which appears to only start the sprinklers from the sides and then Valerie sets the whole place on fire and start killing everyone inside.
In Coming Home Was a Mistake, Lizzie and Josie were taught to use Incendia by Seline. After absorbing some magic from her, they were able to start a small ember on a plank of wood which quickly grew. In We're Planning a June Wedding, they instinctively protected themselves from the smoke and heat of the explosion during Stefan and Caroline's wedding by siphoning from Bonnie. Together, they directed the residual fires, that spanned the building, into a focal point and out through the fireplace chimney.
In What Are You?, Beatrice Bennett and her coven performed one of the most powerful fire manipulation spells shown thus far; a spell to contain and manipulate hellfire. Their combined magic of a hundred witches was powerful enough to prevent the destruction of the, yet to be founded, community of Mystic Falls. Unfortunately, they gave their lives during the process.
In I Was Feeling Epic, during Bonnie's greatest need, Sheila, Beatrice, Lucy, Ayana, the Witch of the Five and other ancestral Bennett witches came to her aid. Together, they performed the variant hellfire manipulation spell and sent hellfire back to hell, destroying Katherine and hell along with it.
Throughout The Originals
Davina first used this power when she lit a candle and then extinguished the flame. In Après Moi, Le Déluge, Davina begins to manifest flames behind her path from not completing the Harvest ritual and apparently could have consumed the city in flames had she not completed the reaping. During the Fête des Bénédictions, she used this power to set off the fireworks as the Harvest Witch of fire.
In Crescent City, the French Quarter elders, Céleste Dubois, Bastianna Natale and Genevieve, cast a powerful representational fire spell using the power of the harvest girls to set the entire Mikaelson Mansion on fire and sealed all the exits, trapping Hayley and Jackson. In Le Grand Guignol, Genevieve non-verbally set flames directly on Marcel's body.
While possessing the witch Vincent Griffith, he attempted to burn Klaus alive in the Lafayette Cemetery. Finn's use of non-verbal pyrokinesis to date has been the most powerful seen as he was able cast a large spreading stream of flames toward Klaus with little external accelerant though, it was apparently with aid from the Ancestors. When the flames and smoke clear, however, Klaus had already vanished, using his speed to overcome his magic.
In Save My Soul, after Dahlia linked herself to Freya using connective magic, she was able to destroy a village by igniting it with flames with a wave of her hand. Also in Night Has A Thousand Eyes, Dahlia effortlessly produced fire in order to destroy the enchanted dagger meant to kill her, after that she immediately extinguished the flames by waving her hand on top of them.
In City Beneath The Sea, Dahlia invoked Klaus into her mind, and showed her Freya's past, in this memory Freya was seen throwing a yellow flower into a fire and effortlessly accelerated the intensity of the flames.
In Beautiful Mistake, she was seen easily setting the resurrection spell, that Rebekah sought for Kol, on fire with a snap of her fingers. This gesture has rarely been seen and perhaps a unique form to non-verbally activate this power as most other witches use different methods to accomplish this.
In Voodoo Child, the Hollow, possessing Hope Mikaelson used this basic power to set the grimoire, the Sacrificial Instruction Manual, ablaze, ensuring that it couldn't be used by Vincent to entrap her spirit.
Since after his death, Arcadius had gained the ability to create and manipulate a type of supernatural fire from his dimension known as Hellfire. He was the only known psychic able to do so, though that seemed to stem from the fact that hellfire is tied to his psychic dimension; Hell.
In the Novels
- At The Harvest Davina was chosen to be The Harvest Witch of Fire.