Choice

8/5/08

I could feel the pure power in my body as my muscles tightened and my arms locked around my prey. If I just increased that pressure with the slightest amount of effort, I knew that I could snap the creature I held into pieces.

As I sank my teeth into the delicious flesh of this human's throat, I thought about how easily I could suck all of the life right out of her weak little body. The human would not even understand what was happening. She would die blissful and unaware. I held the power to choose between life and death. Yes, more important than merely the strength to kill was the strength it took not to.

I sighed as I pulled myself away from my defenseless victim. She slumped into my arms with a glazed look over her eyes, peacefully staring up at the nighttime sky.

"Sleep, my pretty one," I murmured softly in her ear. "No harm will come to you tonight. I choose to let you live."

Silently, I raced through the forest skimming over the grass and underbrush with my unnatural speed. I scaled a tree effortlessly with the woman still limp in my arms and flitted swiftly from branch to branch. Once I reached the outskirts of the city, I transitioned to the rooftops. Before a quarter of an hour had passed, I had my pretty victim tucked safely into bed in the bedroom of her own cozy little apartment. In the darkness of her room, I paused for a moment, enjoying the peaceful atmosphere of this place. The apartment was alive with pleasant fragrances, the strongest of which radiated from the beautiful woman's warm skin. Another scent that lingered in the air hinted that this woman had been baking in her tiny kitchenette earlier that day. And from outside the living room windows wafted the sweet smells of petunias and marigolds. A dozen pink roses in a vase on the kitchen table added their own perfume to the bouquet. These scents mingled with that of the yellowed pages filling the bookshelves along the living room wall.

How homey. How comforting and safe these innocent scents were in the quaint fairy-tale-like apartment. And this, too, was in my power to destroy. Destroy or save as I saw fit.

One swipe of my arm and those heavily-laden shelves would topple over. A flick of my finger and the glass vase would shatter, flinging fragments into every corner of the room. A simple kick and I could knock the whole wall down, if I wished. I toyed with the idea, wondering what the human's reaction would be.

But once more I sighed and turned my back on the peaceful little rooms and their lovely inhabitant. As I glided toward the window, something on the nightstand caught my eye. It was an antique locket of tarnished silver. The pendant was an elegantly carved heart, engraved with an intricate design of vines and roses. It was beautiful.

I pocketed my prize and retreated quickly into the night, adding my own twist to the little happy ending.