I dreamed of her. I always dream of her. Every night it is the same.
I found myself in her garden washed in silver light. Flowers lined the stone walk, their heads bent in sleep. A breeze ruffled the grass, bringing her music to my ears. The dulcet notes danced along my skin, burrowing into me. They mingled with my blood, shining shards nestling into my brain. I raced forward, my heart soaring, my whole being fevered. The flowers blossomed as I rushed past, each center displaying a face framed by petals and each visage distorted in pain. They wept, blood cascading from their eyes.
“Turn back.” They sighed, their voices a harmony of a hundred lost souls. “You know not what you desire.”
I ignored their warnings for I knew they were false, flowers always lie. She stood, a Grecian statue come to life under the sweeping boughs of a willow. Moonlight and stardust, her hair undulated around her, caught in a fragrant wind. Her voice was the sweet call of undying love while her graceful fingers plucked the strings of a lute. She called to me and I hastened
toward her. All sweetness and promise, she smiled at me. Her hand beckoned me closer. I followed as she began to swan away.
It became a dance between us. She drifted deeper into the forest, casting smiles and coy challenges over a bare shoulder and I floated along, eagerly onward, crushing twigs that broke like bones underfoot. We entered a meadow, and she advanced toward the lake, her feet skimming across the surface of the crystalline pool. With her arms open, she turned, waiting for me. I flew toward her my heart near bursting with joy into the cold water. I held my arms out to her. She flowed into my embrace, nestling her head into the crook of my neck.
“Fool,” she said, her arms becoming iron bands about my chest.
I gasped and tried to pull away, the enchantment gone from my eyes. The meadow was a marsh, the water a rancid, vile green bog, and the bank littered with bones. A skull smirked at me. I screamed and she laughed, triumphant. Her face was gaunt, corpse skin stretched over sharp bones, her hair a mass of tangled weeds. The slick tendrils wound about my arms and neck, binding me closer to her. She drew me under the water, my open mouth choking on the viscous liquid. It invaded my nose, burning my lungs and I struggled but to no avail. She was stronger. Moonlight slanted through the bog, ghost fire streams, illuminating her face. She grinned, her jagged teeth set in black gums, tugging me downward. We spiraled, locked in a deadly embrace. Darkness encroached and I tumbled into oblivion.
I woke then. I dreamed of her. I always dream of her. Each night it is the same