The Widening Gulf

Alix, ignorant of the events taking place on the other side of the planet, trudged through increasingly darker shadows that relentlessly appeared, and appeared in front of her. Just when she thought that there was a bit of light in the distance – light that would banish the shadows – the mirage would disappear in front of her. Alix folded her body in upon itself, hunching her shoulders and digging her hands into her armpits, but conversely, the dry desert-like wind chilled her even more. She wondered if the laws of logic ran backwards here. The desert setting was making her cold; darkness had no end; and though she’d set out at an apparent sunrise, no sunshine had yet crossed her path as she searched simply for her twin – or any other human presence – in this place.

 

Not looking down at her feet, Alix tripped, and when she fell the earth beneath her made a gross crushing sound. Under her knee there lay the carcass of some bug. It might have been black, or any colour of the rainbow when it was alive. Dead, however, it was as grey as the rest of this world. Alix sprang up quickly – she never did like bugs – but in another glance, she examined the bleak shading of the insect at her foot. Before her eyes, it was crumbling to dust, and the impact of her fall had probably only accelerated what was a natural process. Alix’s brain put two and two together, and proposed a not unlikely theory that all the dust of this world was just so many dead bugs. Alix giggled. “Just so many dead bugs.” Her voice was thick with disuse. She coughed in an attempt to clear her throat, and her cough echoed painfully loud in the senseless silence. She couldn’t stop coughing. Alix held her sides as a sudden fit seized her.

 

**

 

Lisle, ignorant of the events taking place on the other side of the planet, took another confident step forward, and then another. As she walked into the path of the sun, the darkness closed behind her, filling space as soon as she no longer occupied it. Lisle paid the darkness no mind. If it meant to hurt her, it would have done so already. As it is, she had an attentive escort to wherever she would end up. Lisle couldn’t yet decide if she wanted to wind up close to Alix - so she could settle matters with her irksome twin – or maybe she wanted to end up far away from her, so she would never have to see the other girl ever again. Lisle sighed as the weight of responsibility settled on her shoulders for the first time, and the darkness formed itself into a cape there, also. It was as if the darkness could read her feelings. This world…this situation…wasn’t so bad. Lisle wound a strand of darkness around her pinky finger to keep it close, and pretended that she wasn’t using it as a replacement for Alix.

 

Perhaps she had better find some closure for her past, first, after all.

The End

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