A Lost Child

She smiled to herself, proud that she had discovered the talisman to the raven's happiness. She felt a cool shiver of joy despite the upside down world of hard sky pressing into her face like a stone. The raven hopped from his rock and flapped the few feet to land on the cold table beside her face. He peered sideways at her and for a moment she thought he might pluck out her eye, but the bird stretched his coal dark wings out into a curtain of night that blacked the sky and the table and silenced the gurgling waters so she found herself hanging like a star at midnight.

"You."

She heard the raven croak, but could not see him in the darkness. She tried to turn her head, but still she felt as if God pressed his invisible hand down on her.

"Where are you," she asked. Her voice felt like someone else, like the voice of a lost child.

She felt a stirring behind her. A black shape in the black moved like a shadow at the bottom of the sea.

"Here," he grumbled, and she saw a face lit like pale smoke rise up to her from the night.

"Who are you?" she asked, confused and suddenly full of loss that her raven had left her in the dark with this stranger.

He raised a bony, long nailed finger to his lips and shushed her.

"Stay with me," his stony voice plucked a familiar chord in her ears. She squinted until she could make out a glimmer in his black eyes.

The End

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