It had been a night just like this one, the silent echo of laughter was still painfully clear in the back of my mind. What was I thinking coming back here? I curl my fingers through the soft blades of damp grass and let my eyes wonder above me, the moon was glittering a dark green halo through transparent tree leaves that hang above my head like a canopy. I could see his face, a brilliant pale white, illuminated by the moonlight above and something catches in my throat. Instinctively my hungry fingers reach out towards him, shivering lightly at the touch of his silky soft skin and tracing down the curving contours of his neckline and then father down to his marble chest. My breath was aloof with fascination and awe, seeing him like this under the dim light of the moon; he was painted and stitched into my mind for me to marvel over later. A light smile tugs at the corners of my lips as I inch closer to him, his silvery eyes never leaving mine. Our lips were only a breath away and my tongue dances eagerly for his, but I felt frozen in time, being this close to him, his big silver eyes staring back in mine like nothing else exists but me, it was a sight only seen in dreams. My stomach drops then. Dreams. This was only a dream of a memory long ago. But my heart refused the truth leaning closer to him with more determination then before, our lips reunited instantly, satiny soft skin, changing form with each twist of my lips. My heart slowly sunk, as his lips became stone still, fluttering against the soft breeze brushing against my chilled skin. Before I can stop myself my hand reaches for his lips, pressing my fingers softly against it, the material was very thin, and almost rubbery now. It was a petal; my eyes flutter open, a tulip petal. They weren’t his lips I was kissing again, he hadn’t returned to me. Just a memory. Really, what was I doing here? A looming silhouette caught my attention, it was standing right in front of me, but the face was covered by the surrounding dark shadows from the trees above. A faceless angel, with wings neatly tucked behind it’s back. “Kirene…?” It was softer then a whisper, but spoken with clarity.
Feet colliding with autumn leaves, a rhythmic drumbeat of crackling and breathless laughter. –
The surrounding tree’s groan as the light breeze picks up with intensity, rustling the forest floor over my lap. The shadow does not move towards me, turn to leave, or look away. It’s long plumes of hair dance in the wind, fraying at the ends and then dissolving into nothing and like a string being pulled from a blanket, the dark figure completely unravels in a dissolving hiss. Gone with the wind. I only stare back with wide broken eyes, hoping, desperately hoping he’d come back. But my mind seemed intent on taunting me, not comforting me and it was my own damn fault for bringing myself out here. I should have known the experience wouldn’t be pleasant, even after a year of staying far from this little slice of forest. The only place that felt like home anymore. The feeling began in the pit of my stomach and traveled up my throat, squeezing so tightly I could scarcely breathe, my chest begins to heave and my back arches. Both of my palms fall flat on the moist ground and my head hangs down, a curtain of blonde twirling down around me, the tears swelled at the edges of my eyelids, a soft unearthly sound rumbled in my chest growing into an ear-piercing wail. My head falls back in a knee-jerk reaction and I let my mouth stretch open even wider, the sound slicing through the lonely silence of the trees and moon.
Knees colliding into a soft bed of pastel green grass and warm arms sliding recklessly around my waist. A playful rumble from behind me sending shivers down my spine. Soft breath tickles against the small hairs on the back of my neck and supple lips graze against my sensitive skin. I have to hold back the urge to giggle and instead crane my neck around to breathe in the playful smile placed crookedly on his lips. I’d never seen him like this. So euphoric, so god-like. It was as though he was the richest man on earth. The thought makes me blush and I have to look away from his knowing silver jeweled eyes to the green forest aloof with life and beauty. Where could he have found such a place? I’d never felt more at home then here…Cool fingers suddenly press gently against my hot cheeks, and a creamy chuckle becomes wondrous music to my ears. It doesn’t help the blush much when I tentatively look back to his eyes, with the tender look he holds for just me. As though I could crumble beneath his finger, as though I really were so fragile. I never understood what exactly he saw in me…But I felt captivated by him, and could not look away, babbling breathlessly, “Thank-you for this.” His answer was a kiss. –
The sobs were wet with saliva and salty tears that streaked my face raw; I fell to the damp mud of the forest floor, my fingernails clawing into the dirt and caught painfully on dirt clogs. The cool earth against my broken body soothed breathless cries, and they slowed to soft whimpers, tears sliding noiselessly down my cheeks and snot bubbles popping in my face. It honestly was a pathetic sight; only a soul of broken pride would lie in such a place and cry their heart out. But it was out of my control, I’d lost him, what else was there to do but grieve? The weeping continued on for god knows how long, my body twisting in agony and my eyes burning but never fully closed. One thing I learned, no matter how much you grieve, no matter how many tears you cry, it’s the last broken sigh that hurts the most. And with that sigh that escaped from gnarled bleeding lips, a mournful sleep drifted over my weary soul. Here I was, once again, sleeping beneath this willow tree. But this time, with one less inhabitant. It was just my sorrow and I, here tonight.
I was intently aware of his chest rising and falling, or the stern arms wrapped comfortably around me and mine clinging to his shoulders behind me. My head lay against the crook of his neck with his cheek pressed lightly against mine. I didn’t have to look at him to see the smile on his face, or feel the feeling of completeness here in his arms like this, at this very moment. I could stay here forever, and oh how I wished I could. My mind had been far from what would occur tomorrow as we both watched through crooked branches and shivering leaves, the pastel colors of a sunset sky. The moment overwhelmed me all too quickly; feeling so many powerful emotions at once could take a toll on a simple girl like myself. So to my greatest embarrassment, two small teardrops slid down my cheek before I could stop them. One of them rolls down onto his cheek, making him shift his position to look at me face to face. “Elizabeth, what’s wrong?” A slight smile creases my face with uncertainty, “I’m just…this is all so much…to think…” I look away, stumbling over my own words as usual. Why was I only this way with him? But just as quickly, his capable hands cup both sides of my face and gently turn me back to him, my eyes reluctantly returning to his. “What is it, sweetheart?” My lips droop and my face falls, I sigh. “To think that this has to end…I can’t bear it, Kirene. I can’t…” I could feel his heart breaking by my words, see it written clearly across his face, if their was one thing I hated worse then seeing him in pain was knowing that I was the cause of it. One of his hands fall from my face, entangling his fingers with mine and the other still resting on my cheek. “Everything has an ending. Sometimes it’s a ‘happily ever after’ sometimes it’s on the other spectrum, and not so happy. But either way, that’s what makes our lives so beautiful, so…worth it. Because it does end and in knowing this, every moment means so much more to us. No immortal or god, can every know such meaning, they can never experience the beauty of a short life well lived. So treasure this moment, Elizabeth. Just like I treasure every moment with you.” His words didn’t necessarily make the sadness disappear, but they did help. This was still going to end, but somehow I knew, that right now I was experiencing the best memory I could ever make. So I better damn well make good of it. My face brightens at this and my free hand clasps over the one on my cheek, rubbing it softly. His returning smile is unearthly, especially in comparison to my awkward one. This glorious man before me loved me with all his heart, and even though I didn’t understand it, I’d never take it for granted. Because god, how I loved him back. We embrace then, his comforting arms enfolding me in a protective cage. I breathe him in, memorizing each curve of his back and beat of his heart, each shift in his movements or change in his smell. I’d done this so many times before, but each time, I wanted to be certain my memory did him justice. And each time, I was a lot more then a ‘little’ off. He was too perfect, even my mind couldn’t accept it. He leaned back against the tree, pulling me into his lap and keeping his arms securely around me. I place mine over his, lying my head back onto his chest and smiling peacefully, the sun had set fast and now the edge of twilight was on us. We were on the cusp of night, just one more final plunge until total darkness set on us. No more words were needed after that, and slowly I drifted into a dreamless sleep as the evening surrounded me in a cool blanket of darkness. Sleeping in his arms, just the two of us, I thought the moment would never come. And now that it had, I could hardly fathom it. –
My face was sticky and wet when I awoke, and pain immediately clenched my lungs tightly, making my face twist unpleasantly into a grimace. I grapple at his shirt, hiccupping in-between moaning sobs and acidic tears. He pulls me closer to him, not making a sound, as though he knew why I cried so terribly in his arms. This wasn’t right, this wasn’t how I remembered it to be. I didn’t wake up crying, I didn’t wake up at all until early morning. This was too real to be a dream and it most certainly wasn’t a memory. So that only leaves one last explanations; it was real. With this I almost shriek with happiness, clinging harder to him and digging my nails into his skin. The shock leaves me breathless, I can barely enunciate a singly syllable. “Kirene, it’s you, it’s really you…” I trace over every part of him, burying my face in his stomach and hyperventilating with happy tears. It didn’t matter how he was here, all that mattered was that he was back, and in my arms. “Yes baby, it’s me. I’m here.”
“Oh!” I gasp at the sound of his angelic voice, my eyes trailing up to his face, taking in the intensity of his eyes staring back in mine. It almost knocks me over and I can’t help but trace my trembling fingers across every crook and contour of his face. He grabs my hands with both of his and leans in to place a kiss ever so lightly on my forehead. I try to hold still but can’t restrain myself, falling into his arms and breaking into relieved tears, that grew with more and more urgency in them. What if he left again? What if this was all my imagination? What if, what if, what if. I couldn’t bear to lose him a second time. Not now, not here, not likes this. He hums a sweet lullaby into my ear, trying to soothe my pain that surely he couldn’t understand, rubbing the back of my head gently. In between tears I gurgle, “You can’t leave me again.” He does not seemed surprised by my words, continuing to rub the back of my head, “I’m here.” I nuzzle my face farther into his tear-streaked, shirt-covered chest, mumbling almost incoherently, “Promise me.” There was a deadly pause. “Promise me you won’t leave again.” I wasn’t in my old body anymore, ripped from the previous moment. I’m staring across a rippless shore, my slender feet buried in soft sand, the grain tickling the inside of my toes. A marvelous golden sun painted the horizon with different shades of pastel pinks and purples, a resemblance that I couldn’t mistake. Kirene shined as brightly as the sun, and when he set over my horizon, my whole world was dark, now here my sun was, setting over the horizon once again. It was about time I said my goodbyes, it was about time I finally let him go. That’s what he wanted me to do; he wanted me to move on with me life. That’s what this vision was for. “Everything has an ending.” I could hear his precious voice, like he was right beside me. Was this finally where our story ended? Like this, here on an ordinary beach, giving our farewells in our own ways. And his was, of course, a glorious one to behold. Is this supposed to be the part when I put a ‘THE END’ on our relationship and move on? It was supposed to be that way but…No. I don’t think so. Staring back that the sun, I smile a gleaming defiant grin, winking at my setting sun, “Some things don’t end. And here I’ll stay, eternally yours.” And how that sun was more a man then a symbol, I’ll never know. But I swear to you, I could hear his distant chuckle traveling back to me across the endless spand of the sea. Always was the determined girl…