Twilight falls. She prepares a fire, as she has for countless nights since they left.

They, the idea of it breaks her heart.

It was only her now wasn’t it?

Alone in the abandoned capital, near the end of a journey that leads her home.

She refuses to cry, again. There’s no point. Gio’s gone.

The air is thick with honeysuckle and the song of nightingales. A sudden howl makes her body clench. The wolf calls to the approaching night to hurry so he can finish his hunt.

The beast still stalking her, means Gio neglected to stop it, making his sacrifice absurd.

She sighs.

Tomorrow they’ll, God willing,  be at the sea.

Her fire cracks and pops and it dawns on her she did it again.


No only her.

The sun slinks away from the night, and surrounded by gloom, she cries, helpless to fear and sorrow.


Published by Bryan

I am an army vet, husband, and father of twins, I am currently working on my next publication, a collection of military fiction, and next year will be publishing an apocalyptic science fiction novel. My urban noir novel, "Compounded Interest," can be purchased on Amazon. I host a podcast on creativity called Origin: Stories on Creativity and co-host the soon-to-be-released show on speculative fiction called Mirage with fantasy author R. Emma Hardcastle. My youtube channel is: The Origin podcast feed is: For updates on "Mirage" and future publications follow me on twitter: @bryaiello More of my short fiction can be found at: My amazon author page is:

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