My name's Nebula. I died 14 years ago when I was 16. I fell in love in my afterlife and got married. Oh, my husband, he's Death.
“Is your father spending the night in his study again?” she asked.
“Yes, Twilight, I expect he is.”
“Ripper, we’re worried. We’ve not seen him in weeks. He used to come down for a short break now and again but... He works too hard.”
“It’s his job. Shush, it’s rude to talk about people when they’re not around, especially Dad. You know what happened to Endora. I don’t want that to happen to you.”
Ripper’s dark eyes didn’t look up from his book once. His white hair and pale skin stood out in the room, with its black furnishings. Twilight got up and sat next to him.
I didn’t make a noise. I just watched them from outside the door. So the servants were worried too. He hadn’t come downstairs for almost a month. When I knocked on the door, he told me to go away or simply didn’t answer.
I turned away from Twilight and Ripper and headed quietly up the stairs. It was time for me to take proper action. At the top of the spiral staircase I paused, thinking about what I was going to do.
I carried on towards the door and instead of knocking, I just opened the door. He turned to look at me when I barged in.
“What do you think you’re doing? Spending all your time in here?” I asked angrily.
“I’m busy. What are you doing in here?” he asked.
“I’ve come to get you out of your hovel. Even the servants are worried about you. I’m worried about you, Ripper’s worried about you. He’d never admit it but he is.”
“Nebula... I’ve got a lot of work to do.”
“It’ll still be there in the morning. Come downstairs, or even just come to bed. You’ve been sleeping in here for three weeks. You know better than anyone that humans get lonely. I may be dead but I still love you and I want you to come to bed at night.”
He sighed and held out his hand for me to pull him up. I took his hand and led him to our room. The candles lit up the deep red wallpaper. I let go of his hand and walked to the bay window. The heavy black curtains were open, letting the moonlight pour into the room.
I placed a hand on the cold window. He slid his arms around my waist and kissed my cheek. I took my hand off the window and touched his cheek.
“Your hand’s cold,” he whispered in my ear.
“It’s always winter here.”
He took my other hand and turned me around to face him. He kissed me and ran his fingers through my light hair.
“You’re still my Shadow,” I whispered.
“I love you,” he said.
“I love you more.”
“That’s not possible.”
I smiled. “I’ve got some good news.”
“I’m pregnant again.”
“Oh, that’s wonderful news!” was all he could say.
Shadow enveloped me in a tight embrace and kissed me again.