The Dead

by on December 8th, 2016



When I close my eyes I can float listlessly through a languid void. There are no lights to impede my limitless imagination. I can stay like this, locked in a side room, sinking in a simile that I know to be time and space and reality. A representation of the sanity that I’ve rented from the darkness my eyelids render. Let me stay like this forever, let me linger and languish in these lofty similes. I long for the mirror that can mimic the masterwork of men, and reflect it into the void, where it can not touch, but only float and flit and flaunt in a flourish of flashes what could be and what I will never be again.


Again? What was I ever? A gentryman, a noble, then a dead man. A liar and a thief and a smuggler. A bad son, a horrible brother, and a whore of a lover. A spy, an assassin, and then a shield. Once a lover who reciprocated love, now burnt and broken and crippled. I trained for several months: I trained my body and mind, trying to shed the fatness of a life lived so long in contentment so I might take up the knife again in lithe, strong fingers and stab it straight through Archer’s black heart. If I was to die, so be it. I’ve died before: my sister is safe, my family plentiful, and my legacy would be bearable, if only barely. I only wanted to kill Archer for what he did to me. I could live with being burnt as a monstrosity, so long as Archer was already dead and cold before I was set to the pyre. The Lady, at least, might look on my deeds favorably.


But now Archer is gone. He took my face, my confidence, and finally he stole my revenge. He’s left me a fraction of my former self. Maybe it’s simple vanity: I was extraordinarily handsome before, roguish even. A former baron turned smuggler: it was a story I could use to woo any girl in the Kingdom. But, maybe the vanity isn’t the whole of it. My face, my features, my nose and mouth and cheekbones — they were part of me. They composed an image that I had grown up seeing reflected in the mirror every day for over thirty years. Now I look in the mirror and what I see disgusts me. I’m not me. I’m something Archer created, something horrendous and vile and something I don’t even recognize. The old me would find peace and comfort sitting on a shore with rum aplenty; This creature created by Archer is (or was) on the contrary fueled solely by thoughts of revenge. And now that’s gone. I’m left trying to reconcile the fact that this monster will need to carry on, and that he’ll have to find something other than revenge to fuel him.


I was at peace with the idea of death, as long as Archer joined me. Now I’m resigned to live for my sisters, and my family, in a way I never was beholden to before. I killed myself once to escape my father, leaving my sisters to pick up the pieces. Now I find the thought of them, my father excluded (vile, vile man) that keeps me from hanging myself in the Town Hall cloak room.



My fingers are frozen, and tired from writing. It’s starting to snow, anyways: I should find somewhere warm.

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