The picture that is framed by the window beside me now is an image of the moon. A flawless disk of polished ivory, glowing against the background of an interrupted sheet of ebony sky, whose stars were upstaged long ago by the lights of the city London has grown into over these past years.

Tomorrow is January the eighth, in the year two-thousand and six. That date will mark six-hundred and eighty-six years since I was first brought into this world. Tomorrow is also the day that Katana and I will be boarding a plane bound for Washington DC, the capital of the United States of America. For centuries now we have been living quietly in London, and after so long we both have agreed that the time has come for a change of scenery. I have already bought and furnished a penthouse apartment for us to live in, where I will be able to better oversee the products of this long and draining revolution I've begun.

I cannot say what will become of this memoir I have so laboriously written down. Perhaps I will throw it on the fire the moment I conclude the final sentence. Or perhaps not. Perhaps these pages will make the journey to America with me, tucked in among the other artifacts I have accumulated over these long years; the key to Mirabelle's missing jewelry box, a small painting a fourteenth-century artist once made of his lovely adopted daughter Anna, Elizabeth's bible and the purple flower I pressed into it, and a stack of letters from Cassandra, her parents, Seth and Lucinda Foucher, and Adele Jourdain, all of whom except for Cassandra are now no longer for this earth.

If I do so choose to keep this documentation of my life, then perhaps one day, after the world has found a way to rid itself of me-- or I have found a way to rid myself of the world-- this story will be found. If it falls into the hands of the right person, then these words may bring enlightenment and understanding to them about the man or the monster they once knew. And if it falls into the hands of the wrong person, then these words will only bring confusion and unanswerable questions as to whether they are of fact or fiction. I can insist that nothing written here is a lie, but ultimately the truth of that will be for the reader to decide.

But I have committed my life to these pages. I have written all there is to write about me and the things I have seen and known and how I have become who I am today.

And with that, I will leave with these parting words: Good night.

-Brent Hans Kothner