That night, my mother died in her sleep. Alone, in the darkness.
The priest arrived promptly that morning; it being common belief that the religious figure must come as soon as possible to help with the burial ceremony, to assist the soul to the Heavens.
All around her, her two sisters wept, holding one another as they watched with faces dirtied with tears as the priest chanted his words, holding their mother's cold hand. Alyssa stood alone; she could only look upon the scene. She embraced herself, though she was still cold. To her inside, to her core, she was frozen cold. She felt like one of the living dead, as if she was caught in some sort of strange half-nightmare and there were no doors to escape.
Despair. Agony. Shock.
It all hung heavy in the air around her, her was who was but a spectator. She felt disconnected, disbelieving. She closed herself in the stable, the warmth of the animal's bodies and the sweet aroma of straw did nothing for her. She cowered in the darkest corner and pulled her legs close to her, sinking into the hay and closing her eyes.
She banged her head against the floor, almost trying to will herself to weep. Fury, cold frustration filled her. Why did she not cry? Her heart felt empty and her soul felt shallow.
Only cold emptiness seemed to occupy her body.
It all started with him.
She was alone. No one would ever making her happy other then him, and he would always make her miserable. And no one would ever understand. Ever.
Alyssa balled up her dress cloth in her fists, not hearing as the goats brayed for grain. Tears filled her eyes and their liquid ribbons spilled over onto her cheeks. Saddness. Black, hollow saddness.
It was long she lay there, but finally she pulled herself from her place and shuffled from the stable and into the bitter air. A light, cold mist feel from the melancholy sky. She shivered. Did the whole world despise her?
She paused, a paper fluttering at her feet. Bending to fetch it, her whole self felt a thunderclap of reaction as she looked over the handwriting, strangely familiar. As she read the words, she knew who it was from.
Meet me in the forest.
What drew her to follow his call, she knew not. She told herself that it was some sort of his demonic dark magic, and she was terrified at what she would meet once she was there. Though half of her was calm, like one going knowingly to their death. There seemed nothing she could do about it.
Inside, Alyssa could not help feel a certain longing for his terribly wonderful presense, for the burn of his kiss. For that horrible way he made her feel, that way he paralyzed her, enchanted her with one look. The idea that his unbelievable self wanted her.
She walked amidst the shadows of the place, the dark pillars of the trees frowning at her as her footsteps on the dead leaves beneath her seemed incredibly loud. She walked and walked, until she came upon a clearing, where the pale sunrays feel through, bleak beams that broke the grey ceiling. The hair raised on her neck, her heat rate quickened, and she knew she had gone far enough, though no one stood around. Alone. Not a rabbit, a squirrel, lurked, or moved.
Alyssa turned slowly. She looked to him, meeting his eyes without saying a word.
They stared for a while, just standing. He took the fateful step her way, but she continued to stay where she stood. He took a second....and then another...
He put his hand to her face, cradling her cheek in his palm. Leaning closer, he held his lips just above hers. This time, her heart did not quicken, her blood did not burn.
He kissed her. With that touch, she felt free, her emotions let loose. Tears flooded openly, she started to sob as she kissed him in return. Her feelings tore at her mind, at her heart, almost so that she felt her very soul ripping. She finally had to pull away, trembling, crying violently. Her knees gave way, and she crumbled to the ground.
She hid her face, curling in the leaves. Cold, black sadness, confused love, agony, pain....pain....
.....and then darkness.