Every monster will find it's way to the safest of rooms. The wolf will find you. He will absolutely find you. In some versions, he's the only thing that does. In comes a vampire. In comes a wolf.
I didn't love anyone. Couldn't, because they weren't...something. I wanted to love someone like the other girls my age. But in the winter, I'd gone back to people just because they made me feel anything at all. I don't love unconditionally. Evelyn, is that wrong? I didn't learn about hate for another 3 years, so I knew only that love was expected. Something I needed to do to meet the ends of what I knew to be right. I stopped looking for Adam, and started looking for anything that felt anything at all.
If I could have left myself to the wolves, this was surely the way to do it. In the confrontation with the faceless mass that has no essential meaning, I was begging to be made to feel. In the bare garden, under the stones, I knew Clyde could make me feel. Nameless, a turn of my head toward stolen attention, the unfinished of me.
C....? Sh, did you hear that?
No. No. It was the wind.
I moved into the empty house that to that time had never been empty, the large and cold house of the dragon, which was now silent and filled with smoke and shadows. I spent every morning waking against the sun, walking in black with my hair wet and freezing. Maybe all girls go on those kinds of journeys when they lose their fathers, and their brothers aren't looking.
I spent every day home from high school sitting sideways in a chair, listening to one of maybe 4 albums, covered in a white and blue afghan, and doing crossword puzzles from a book flawlessly and in pen. Sometimes, I would write. The light would slip from the room the way it does on a day with fast passing clouds, and I would switch on the lamp and continue until late into the night, interrupted only by the crinkling of foil pulling back from whatever leftovers I was reheating.
And it goes on forever, the girl spinning, and what does she know of any abysses but those she is certain are real and made in her eyes? Dickensian. Every girl on earth is Dickensian, in the way of her knowledge of how all things must be in a smeared lip and tightly-laced garment. We witness insanity of a caliber our fathers never prepared us to see.
There, unfolded in a chill I still talk about, unfolded the winter of my endurance tested. The starting line of my endlessness. It's cold in here, Adam, my darling, but it isn't as cold as the first snow.
And through it all, he came.
When our eyes met, he laughed at me some kind of hidden chuckle that warned me how very trapped we were about to become. If he’s here, I’m here. Here, in a way that would be painful and pulled from me bit by bit with his hands, stretching out my isolation like taffy warmed in his patient mouth until it’s sweet and unending.
He lit the fire from embers and reminded me of my teachings from the Dragon.
“Here,” he said in the dark of the living room, his hands pale flags of surrender moving against the blackness. “You put these...over this. Like a house.”
“I remember,” I told him, my eyes wide.
“I know you do, I’m just telling you again.”
He lit a match, which burned in the darkness, and the spreading orange glow through the kindling became the unavoidable point of focus.
Outside, a wind howled close and I shivered.
The minute I said it, I choked on it, on the little girl in me. On my own innocence, lending blood to the wind. I looked away from him, and he leaned my head against his chest.
“It is, sometimes,” he conceded. “But not tonight.”
"I could have been born a vampire," I told him, and his eyes narrowed to slits in the dark under his brows.
"Would that make a difference?"
I considered telling him a vampire never dies, but I knew just as I opened my mouth that he would have some contradiction to it.
In the morning, the fire died, and the room was freezing, but he was warm against me. He left the complaining and sagging bed, and I moaned in protest. He opened the curtains to the first snow, and stayed until the full moon passed in the full bloom of our ignorance. I would have told him, if I knew to do it.