Chapter 34: Night

They walked the ghostly path between the susurrating grasses almost to the edge of the cliff and looked down on the village lights below and the black sea beyond. They could make out the village square. She pointed to the brightly lit public house where she was staying. The window of her room was dark. She felt a sudden chill and put her arm inside his arm, so that he could feel the pulse of her breast against his arm.

“Is this where you kill me?”

“No,” he answered after a moment. It still caused him stabbing pain in his gut every time she said it. “There is still time … besides, it’s never me. I would never … I could never … I … I …”

“Shush,” she said. “I know. Let’s go back to the cabin. There is a slight chill in the breeze.”

“Yes,” he remembered, “we’d better get back before the moons go down. The darkness is absolute.”

They walked back up the path hand in hand.

They could see the light from the windows thinning into the night until it merged with the heavy darkness surrounding the cabin. He opened the door and they walked into the light.

She sat down on the sofa.

“Do you want some more coffee?”

“What do I usually say?”

“You usually say yes.”

“Then why do you ask?”

“I always do. I think it’s embedded in the fabric of this loopy little dimension.”

“Then go make me another cup of coffee,” she smiled charmingly.

He walked over to the stove with the two empty cups, set the water in the pot to boil, rinsed out the cups, and refilled them with coffee. He walked back out with the two cups brimming, set one down beside her, and stood beside the sofa sipping his own coffee pensively.

He sat down beside her. Ellen kicked off her shoes, bent her long legs underneath her, and nestled into the crook of his arm. His wings folded around her and his arms no longer ached.

Her breathing became soft and even.

Soon he too was asleep.

Mike Stone

Raanana Israel

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Filed under Prose, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Stories and Novels

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