Terminal
By Jen

Dust in his mouth.  Ashes on the wind, filling his nostrils as he breathed in, trying to make her part of him always.  No matter that the ash was probably the clothes which she had worn, the pallet on which she had been laid.  He would still believe it was her, even while her essence was taken away from him forever, blown by the wind over an oblivious landscape.

The urn fell unheeded to the ground.  It was done.  An ending, they had said.  A farewell.  How could he bid farewell when her loss possessed his every moment, when her absence filled his every painful breath?  When there were nights it crushed him, his lungs bleeding despair until he woke gasping for air, struggling to breathe, not understanding why he struggled when all he wanted was to let it take him, to drown in it until it drew him to her.

An ending, they said.  An ending to the only love he had ever known.  The only one to see him for who he was and still love him.  An ending, to allow a beginning, they said.  An ending.  It was over.  She was gone.

Corruption and death were all that was left.  Without herů  The dark earth was suddenly beneath his knees.  Dead.  Every beat of his heart reminded him that hers was still.  Dead.  She had not looked peacefully asleep as his mother had told him; she had not looked like Rena.  He had demanded of his councillors where she was as he looked at the cold still stranger before him.  It was a misunderstanding, this was not his Rena.  Which meant she still livedů  It squeezed his heart.  Dead.  There had been voices, worry, and pity.  He had not heard them; he had not heard anything as he plunged
recklessly through the corridors of the castle, looking for her, clutching at servants, guards, asking if they had seen her.  Dead.  He had not found her then.  He would never find her now.  She was gone.  Dead.

Dust in his mouth.  Ashes on the wind.

The End