He tossed the leaf into the fire he had made, watching it contract for barely a second before it caught. He wished it was him, curled into a ball int he center of the fire, squeezing himself together and then bursting into flame, feeling the intense heat eat away at him, and the friendly flames lick his bones as the tissue burned away.

H stood up, stretching, then rubbing his arms in an attempt to warm up. He looked around, then sat again, digging his nails into his sides, holding himself together, fighting the urge to tumble into the fire, telling himself that it would hurt too much to be worth it. Staring, he felt his eyelids close, though he could still see the image of the fire that was burned onto the backs of his eyelids.

He was waiting for something, he felt, but he didn't know what. Maybe he was waiting for morning, or the fire to burn out, or something to happen. He didn't know.

He opened his eyes; the fire was small now. He got up, grabbing two or three small logs and adding them to the fire. Sitting again, this time barely six inches from the fire, he took his hand and waved it through the flames. They almost tickled, but the touch was too soft and comfortable, though almost burning, to tickle.

He closed his eyes and lay down, curling around the fire like a cat. He would wait here, until whatever it was he was waiting for came to pass, and he would make himself live to see it.