“I think that’s what’s making it so hard. You never knew them, you have no memories to keep but as long as you have those candles you can pretend that you have something,” Rei said, his eyes watching the moonlight glinting off the top of the river. He felt Asha tense against his body and knew that he had hit a nerve.
“You’re right. You have plenty of stuff from your father. Memories, things that he left behind, but when I let these candles go I’ll have nothing,” Asha mused.
“They’re only candles Asha. Even if you light them and let them go it won’t change the fact that you had parents,” Rei told him. “You have to forgive them for leaving you.”
“I might have never met you if they were alive,” Asha said as he rubbed his forehead against Rei’s shoulder.
“That’s right. The Gods do things for a reason even if we can’t see them. I think your parents would be happy if you lit the candles,” Rei murmured before kissing the top of Asha’s head. Asha wound his fingers through Rei’s, enjoying the silence that stretched between them.
“Will you stay with me while I light them?” he asked.
“Of course,” Rei replied with a smile. Asha produced a long thin piece of wood that was used to light the memorial candles from his pants pocket then picked up the first candle. “Let me,” Rei said. He made a small flame in his hand and Asha lit the stick while he laughed at the other’s use of magic.
“Why thank you Mr. Magician,” Asha joked. They both watched as he lit the first candle, the beginning of a prayer for the dead falling from his lips. They sang in unison as he lit the second but instead of placing them in the water Asha put them back on the walk way. Rei watched him silently.