She is alone tonight. There is a mug in her hands, a rich black cup of coffee. She stares into it, seemingly seeing, like a fortune teller with tea leaves. This is how she feels inside, a swirling mass of bitter emotions. She is crying silently; her tears fall into the mug. Her shoulders shake. There is pain in her heart, in her hands, so much pain and fear and destruction. A man stands in the corner of the room. He is cloaked in darkness; his eyes invisible, wrapped in the shadows surrounding him. His smile mocks her. She looks up and a scream escapes from her lips, a violent, aching cry that echoes throughout the room. The coffee cup hurtles through the air towards him, smashes on the wooden floor, scattering the porcelain and the coffee, shattering her hurt until it lies in pieces all around her. No longer is the maddening terror contained within the cup, within her soul. Now it envelops her, works its way into the air and suffocates her. And still the man looks on. Laughter emerges from deep in his throat; it is cruel, cold. He walks into the dim fluorescent light, but he is still darker than night; his fist stretches out to strike her. The girl whimpers and hides her face in her arms, preparing for the blow. His fist flies towards her skull. But there is something in the way. He lurches back, confused, angry. Her tear-stained face lifts. They see at the same time.

Another man stands between them, golden, solid. Light surrounds him; he personifies a terrifying beauty. The dark suffering that shrouds the girl flies away, shrieking; it comes together, forming a solid mass, and dissolves into nothing. There is another type of ache in the room now. It is a sweet pain, a forgiveness and a longing that confuses the girl. She has only ever known destruction; this is hope, love, something she doesn’t understand. The dark man seems smaller next to the radiant figure, somehow more pitiful and less intimidating when viewed in the light that streams from this man in gold. He lurches away, clutching his throat and jerking in all directions. Evil runs from the room and is gone.

The room disappears; the girl is lying in a field of flowers, with the golden man behind her. The night sky is painted with stars; they are dancing, dancing, dancing, ever nearer. Everything is light, and yet everything is dark. The heavens are caving in. The girl sits up, looks at the shining man. His wrists are bleeding. She cries out. Why him? Why? It is for her that he bleeds; this she knows. She presses her arms to his, trying to stop the steady stream of crimson. His blood stains her hands, and the river flows on; he is dying. Tears fall from her eyes into his wounds, mingling with the blood. This is a river of redemption, of salvation; it flows into her lap, seeps through her skin and mingles in her veins, healing the brokenness that has formed her. She stares in awe as the wounds on the man’s arms fix themselves, but more wondrous is the convalescence that has taken place inside of her. A tingling feeling pricks her skin; as she looks down at her arms, she gasps. The blood which covers her arms is shimmering gold, and as she watches, it spreads over every inch of her skin. She is lighter, more beautiful than she has ever been before. She is saved. She is new. She is golden.

"The earth spins and the moon goes round, the green comes from the frozen ground and everything will be made new again, like freedom in spring" - golden, switchfoot

The End

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