"They're beautiful, but keep away." His mother had warned him, over and over, "The likes of us aren't to associate with the likes of them. It's too dangerous."

But when did anyone ever listen to their mother where friends were concerned? She had to be wrong. All of them seemed so friendly, seemed so warm – they wouldn't ever hurt him surely? So he hovered around them, admiring, wishing that some of that beauty could rub off if he stayed along enough.

Not too close though – none of them ever let him get too close. Certainly they would share that warmth with you, allow you to bask for a while in their company, but as soon as you tried to creep near you would be pushed away, kept back by their hard unyielding barriers. They never seemed quite so friendly after that – perhaps because he had tried to ask for more than they could give to the likes of him, or maybe it was just that part of him wasn't comfortable with a relationship that had such rules and barriers.

But this one… she was the most beautiful thing he had ever seen. At first he had only been able to watch, admiring of her brilliance, certain that she would not want him closer. He would seem so dull beside her.

But she had beckoned her him, and he was sure for a moment that she was laughing at him. Not cruel laughter though, but true merry laughter. He couldn't help but want to be closer to someone who laughed like that.

So, expecting her to change her mind any moment and push him away he came closer still… and closer. She didn't stop him or demand he leave and for a while he just stayed there, as he was, content to let her warmth and beauty flow over him, feeling more beautiful himself at being wanted by such a creature.

And then she beckoned again, and though it was hard to believe she truly meant him, how could he refuse her?

There was a moment of ecstasy, and then pain, and then nothing as the moth flew into the candle flame.