"Love is the world's longest and most brutal road, my dear. And you chose to walk barefoot upon the coals and spikes. The scars and thorns embedded in the toughness perseverance wrapped around your wounds were unfelt, those shoes of callouses made you numb to the pain, made you walk on, and you did not know that your whole body was aflame and crumbling. You have reached the end of the longest road, my dear, and all that welcomed you was ruin. It killed you, and now you shall go without a grave…none that may give one to you see where you are.

My dear, I pity you for I see that you are as human as any other, as human as myself, but you were the one who bared your feet and took those steps towards a fruitless journey. And I pity you further. You have no shred of hope left; you do not wait to see if what had driven you forward might return and make your dream seem possible again - which is what makes me say that you are dead. You cannot cry because you know that tears shall do nothing, shall never raise the ruins back into their prosperity or even succeed in drowning you. No. It cannot even provide that relief. I know you would enjoy it.

If only the anguish could consume you! If only it could swallow you whole! If only there could be nothing left! -that you could die with the road and have that be the end of it all! But no! Life does not end! -even if it does not give you a path to go beyond your ruin. You are left to dwell in the ashes of your anguish, my dear. And I see you within this ruin, so long dead that it does not even possess flesh or color; it is not rotting, it is dust, it is the skeleton of a dream – one that has stripped you of your own flesh, your own colored blood and blush and beauty. Oh god, do I know you. I know you, Skeleton, I know you! I see you, my dear, as you were, the phantom confined within the white bones on which the dust and ash of the ruin collect, constructing the image of the ruin upon your remains, upon your features where in life you are still seen by others to possess flesh - faded, thin, and pale. The ignorant! Those who never tread the path still see you! Those who had cowered, fled, those who had fallen! Fallen and wept for self-pity and misery that was internal and petty. So shallow! No, the end of the road is the bottom of the depths! The road reached the pit of Hell, and passed through it! It went beyond into ruin, into nothingness. Emptiness, my dear. Your feet have brought you to nothing. Work, strain, perspiration, blood- all have failed to bring you anything! -Failed to create anything that you may touch, and hold, and weigh in value or see as the product of your actions and dreams which you had struggled to sustain.

You had thrown everything into the furnace, my dear, and as it burned, you found that you had nothing left – nothing to use so that you might craft the iron that would hold up your fantastic paradise. You walked onward, even then, your feet afire; you wore Hell as your skin, my dear! And it ate deeper and deeper into your flesh. It swallowed your organs, melted and destroyed all of you. And so you died. You died! You died just as I had once died! And what for? To meet me in this ruin?

Could you see my ruin when you started down your road, my dear? Did you believe that you might find paradise for both of us at the end of your journey? How could any such thing be the neighbor of Hell?

You fool! I have been dead, I have always been dead! I could never love you! The flames ate that organ long ago! When you are dead, you do not feel such feelings! They are beyond those in this wasteland! The wretches that we are, can only pity. We can only pity and feel frustration when we speak words that the living cannot comprehend. We try to warn them. I tried to warn you! But none of the living can hear us! Their hearts beat too loudly, they thunder within the mind connected to the pulse by passion! –That which makes them deaf! And so we can only watch - watch the feet burn, the callouses grow, the skin melt, the heart… see the flames sink into the heart with their enveloping method which eats at the outer layers until they meet at the core- nibbled, the prolonged destruction that leaves no charred remains.

No black husk hangs within that cage of bone, my dear. It has become part of the ash, as all our hearts have, which has coated this place of ruin, fragile snow, choking- …But you have no lungs, and neither do I, so what of the ash? What do we care? We see with sockets, a world of greys. No colors may confuse or deceive us with illusions, with promises -oh that color that had dangled tantalizing dreams around us! Deceived us, made promises of better things, to all of us- all indoctrinated by those colors, so that we walked and waited in a line, calmly waited for the slaughter! Our own demise! Where we watched as our dreams were disemboweled and felt the heat as the gore bathed our feet, our hard working, enduring feet - and painted our callous shoes red. The flames nibbled all the while and took the colors, the deceit away.

So yes, what I have is pity. I have empathy, my dear, so I call you my dear. But I shall never love you. So do not turn those empty sockets upon me, dry as ancient bone. Do not show me the ashes that cling to your frame as you become a part of this ruin, the ruin –all there is, is ruin! Why was a road ever built to bring us here? One so long…so brutal…ravenous, and forever eating more of them, more of us, turning them into us! Oh, my dear, my dear- My dear! Oh why did you ever enter this road to ruin? I would send you back, if I could. But I cannot, for what we stand on is the end, and there can never be anything more. Nothing behind, nothing before. A black dot in lightless space. I'll tell you this, my dear, after seeing you- Hope! Take up again that feeling- It can still serve you! Only hope that no one will follow you to this place! You may have your pity and empathy, and you may also have that hope, for it comes hand and hand with the fear…

I have no more fear, no more hope. For you are my greatest fear, come to haunt me in this desolation. You have emptied me, broken my bones so that I rest as a heap. …I look forward to the day that hands collect them and place them in my coffin. …Then, I shall depart.

Place my bones in my coffin for me dear, now that you know where they lay. It is all you may do for me."