Escaping from the fleeting rays of evening, I drift into the nothing before me, the Shadows' ruined temple of rusting pillars and plundered altars, a silenced battlefield of blinded trees. Their jade-slathered lips lifelessly kiss the candied lace of gloom festooning the brittle remnants of a misplaced worship, dissolving into the setting summer's whispers as I enter.

As I slip mellifluously between the moss-dusted columns of the Heavens, I watch the marble floor begin to fade beneath me, crumbling into the black fog that coils in fanged bracelets around my barren legs, but I do not follow it. Vines of useless sea glass daggers drip from the rotting leaves, blades of lethal dew that slither upon my cheeks, leaving trails of dull carnelian. I disregard the pools upon me, fingering the blooms of a former kingdom's splendour, and I step back for a moment, dazed as the forgotten gems wither before me; they too seep into the mist.

A broken mirror is scattered as I step onto its surface, copied ice faeries glitter for a moment as my toes waft by then dive beneath the sky once more; the moon sprinkles away as well as I dance across the face of echoes, always the superficial likeness in the beholder's eyes.

What a rather dismal clearing I arrive in now, an empty grove of wilting flowers and burnt wings where one may only dream of sunshine's benign glory, as it has long since dipped below the brow of dusk. One is ensnared in a self-created world of agony, such a humanly egotistical conception, formed nonetheless by one's own enveloping sorrow simply because one is far too profligate and stupid to merely return to one's feet and resume walking towards the morning. I happen to be one of these vanished transients, trapped within my own wood of mournful, impossible beauty. And so it dies in front of me.

Blindly stumbling into the arms of my lover, I suddenly look upwards into the rising, my blank path illumined by dawn's hopeful sheen of daylight, the lone incandescence, the lost warmth within the bitter cold of my night. I stare into the swirling sweeps of blistered fire, my tarnished eyes, sprinkled with the golden tips of Aphrodite's song, are the only stars he sees tonight.

I succumb to its compassionate inferno helplessly, hopelessly, without so much as a single logical thought skipping through my feeble mind as I melt into the sanguine embrace, guided by the bronze glow of love's never dimming blaze.

And I am found.

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