Little Love

"She only ever wanted someone to love her." That's what they always said. That was what they had taught themselves to believe. But they had never known her, never spoken to her, never grew to know the intricacies of her brain. They hadn't a clue of what her life was like. Very few of them could describe her appearance; they couldn't explain the way her dark hair absorbed light and kept it all for itself; couldn't tell how her skin moved over her bones like water over pebbles. They knew nothing of her, and so were given no comfort when they found her, washed in blood. The only thing they could tell themselves was, "She only ever wanted someone to love her."

That was only the beginning. That was only the start. I knew her. I knew the way her mind worked, how it toiled and manipulated. I could decipher her cryptic words; listen as she wound them around one another. I knew of all these things, and yet I couldn't stop myself from being taken over by her spells and forced into a deep denial. She was a flame of a girl. She sparked and flitted, rarely wavering. Once she touched something with her undeniable heat, she spread and spread, silent and quick. The only problem with flames is that, eventually, they have to go out.

I suppose I should have seen it. She was mine, after all, and I hers. But she had me so entranced, so lost in the depths of her emerald eyes, that I couldn't be bothered. She would speak, and while I heard her words, my mind was following the scent of her skin.

"Like lilacs," I would always interrupt her, "You smell like lilacs." And she would smile sweetly and kiss my lips. Oh, and her kisses! To know her kiss was to know her soul, to reach into the very depths of her heart. In one small kiss I could feel all of her love, her passion, her fury, and her pain. Those kisses would leave me stunned and wanting.

I would often lie awake at night, thinking of her lips and her eyes and her skin. I could never figure out if she was a demon or a being of light or something else entirely. It was only then, during my inner debates of her nature, that I thought back to her words.

"Gabriel," she said one day, "Where do you think our spirits go when we die?"

"What are you talking about, Sorcha?" I responded. Looking back on it, I realize how stupid I must have sounded. She seemed not to notice, and instead leaned into my shoulder. My nostrils were filled with the scent of her hair.

"I mean, when we die, our spirits can't possibly stay in our bodies, so where do they go?"

"Well, I suppose they float about in the heavens." I hadn't really thought about what I'd been saying. I was too distracted by the curves of her body.

She rose slightly, turning to face me, and once again my thoughts followed the paleness of her cheeks and the brilliance of her eyes. "So, our spirits are let loose?" I nodded, running my fingers through her silky hair. "And our souls are left to wander?" I nodded again. "But that's so sad, to think of our souls wandering and lost." Tears formed in her eyes, and the very thought of such a lovely creature crying moved me to tears. I pulled her close to me, our bodies meshing and our tears mingling. I murmured little nothings in her ear, wanting to comfort her, and in hopes that by comforting her, she would in turn comfort me.

In the recesses of my room, lying awake in the small hours of the morning, I knew what a fool I had been with her. She had wanted to affirm that there was something meaningful after death, and I had only been interested in my own desires and my own comfort. In thinking of her pain and her misery, I was convinced that she was some sort of seraphim fallen out of the heavens' good graces. I berated myself for treating her so unkindly.

But on other nights my contemplations weren't nearly as pure. Once again my day with the ethereal being had left me dazed and thinking of her flesh, but never venturing near her words. When the moon was high in the vast expanse of velvet, however, I recalled the words she had spoken to me, and the nightmare came back in a flood of red.

"Gabriel, my love." Her hair was a halo of black fire around her head, and her eyes sparkled and danced with ferocious power.

"Yes, my night angel?" I replied. She was a wild thing that day, making it clear that I belonged to her and no one else. I enjoyed this power that she felt she had, this carnage right she seemed to believe in so fiercely. To me it was almost like a game, but to her it appeared far more serious.

She was kneeling on top of me, pressing one of her knees into my stomach. We had been sitting this way for a while, and while I could feel a bruise begin to form, there wasn't any chance I was going to stop her. "Do you love me?" She asked, a bit threateningly.

"Of course I do." And I did.

"And would you do anything for me?"

"You know I would." And I would have.

She pressed down on my gut harder, and I flinched slightly with the pain. She laughed softly, making it apparent that she had every intention of being relentless. She kept up the steady pressure on my stomach, concentrating all of her weight to her knee. She bent down, kissing me softly, and any semblance of doubt or worry in my mind was gone. The pain I had felt mere moments ago was replaced with a longing for more. She smiled down at me, and held my right hand in hers, turning the palm up and kissing it gently. "Would you even be willing to help me die?"

"What?" I tried to sit up, but I was far too weak, taken into the sensations of her kisses.

"You heard me. Would you help me die? Or maybe even just make me bleed?" I shook my head, bemused. Her eyes flashed in anger and she stood, looking for all the world like she was some ancient huntress, a woman of the Amazon tribe. "Why not?" Her voice was cold and cut against my heart like a dagger.

"Sorcha.I love you. Why would I want to hurt you?" I was confused and aching in more than one place. She had given me pain and simple bliss and in one gesture took both away, leaving me with nothing.

"If you really loved me, you'd do what I ask of you. Do you really love me?" she said. There was logic in that statement that I couldn't quite grasp, but I was so befuddled that there was little I could do. So I went along with her.

"Sorcha, of course I love you. I've told you so many times, and I'll tell you so many more times. I love you."

She sat again, this time moving close to me, and wrapping herself in my arms. She was whispering softly, but firmly, "Then help me. I've never asked you for much. This time I'm asking. Help me."

I was hers to control. "But what do you want me to do?"

She looked at me, she looked right at me, and I was already helpless against her dazzling eyes. Whatever she wanted me to do, I was going to do it. She had already made sure of that. "Hurt me," she said, "Make me bleed. Only you can do it. Please. Just make me bleed." I couldn't think. I couldn't breathe. I was under her control. Her beauty had drawn me in; her voice and her actions had kept me there. So I really hadn't much choice in the matter. I was only a puppet.

Even lying in bed that night, everything that happened was still a blur to me. I remember she stood, and from somewhere music began to play, a heavy beat with tantalizing melodies. She twirled and twirled around her room, and I watched her, mesmerized by her every movement. She stopped before her desk, opening a box and pulling something out of it. I couldn't see it clearly. She started twirling again, her halo of hair enveloping her face. That's all she really was to me then; a beauteous waterfall of skirts and skin and hair.

She stopped dancing, but the music didn't slow. The beat picked up, and the melodies whipped through my mind without warning, dulling my senses even more. She held in front of me the item she had retrieved from her box; a dagger, glinting innocently in the light. She handed it to me, and entranced, I took it. Before I knew what was happening, I was pulled up and spun around, forced to dance with this flame that had decided to swell so suddenly. I danced with fire, the music and the heat and the beauty of her body throbbing in my brain. Lights swirled in my vision, colours floated around my head. I felt a hand on mine, guiding the dagger to open flesh. I remember something warm trickling down the back of my hand and on to the floor, and that was when I stopped. She stood silent, a smile on her face and a long, open wound across her stomach. The blood flowed quickly from her, and the more she was drained, the more she smiled.

"Keep going," she whispered, and I could barely hear her above the music. "Cut me. Open me up. Make me bleed." I was under her spell. I couldn't be stopped. She lay down on her bed, taking me with her. "Make me bleed." I didn't need her help again. I remember my hand, the hand holding the dagger, slid up and down her arms, across her stomach and her chest. I remember how she sighed, as though she had reached Nirvana, and I remember the pool of blood that had seeped into the mattress and stained my hands. But mostly I remember her eyes. Her spell over me hadn't been broken yet, but through my dulled senses I could still see perfectly her eyes. They had lost their flame. The fire had been replaced with something dead, something eerily peaceful. I dropped the dagger on her bed, and walked home. I couldn't know, I didn't want to know, but I did.

"She only ever wanted someone to love her," they said. But she had someone to love her. She could have had anyone she wanted. Why she chose me, I'll never understand. But it was me, and I did love her. Love wasn't what she wanted. Love she had, and love she could do away with. So what did she want? I've never quite figured that out, just as I've never figured out whether she was a demon, a being of light, or something else entirely. All I know is that I belonged to her completely, and it was by my hands and her wish that she died.