It was a bitter, vicious winter night, but I would have traveled through much worse to be with you. I would have ran straight into the heart of Hell just to see your beautiful, compassionate face again. Maybe someday I will. Hell is probably all a person like me is good for, after all. I was nothing compared to you.

I brought black roses from the bush you planted, seems like millenias ago.

Remember, every child got to choose a plant to add in the boarding school's gardens, the year they enrolled? Since you left, I have been looking after your rose bush, but my own has been neglected and is slowly withering away.

Swirling snowflakes settle on the fragile onyx petals, each as frail as the other and clinging on desperately for existence. Reminds me of us, but I guess everything does now.

Through the howling blizzard I can vaguely see your gravestone, already smothered in the snow. I blink as the icy flakes settle on my eyelashes and sting as they melt on my face, making my pale alabaster cheeks flush crimson in the cold.

Staggering against the strong winds and battering snowstorm, I finally make it to your resting place and collapse in front of it, my knees sinking into the snow and immediately soaking the legs of my black jeans. I'm wearing black, of course, but I always did anyway, before we even met.

"Lee...I made it..." I gasp, my head ringing with the gale. The beautiful black roses tumble out of my arms and on to the frost-bitten ground in front of your grave. A thorn on one of the bright green stems catches my arm, and a few drops of blood stain the snow, like liquid rubies on diamond dust. It doesn't hurt me, and it will just add another scar to my pale arms. I don't mind it. Even if I wasn't numb and frozen physically, emotionally I always will be now. It isn't your fault, but whenever I try to remember back to happiness, back then, us together, I just feel so much loss and emptiness.

When they killed you...they killed me too. It hurt too much when you left me, and I can't let that happen ever again, so I just cut myself off and I cut my arms. Pretending it's them? Or am I just daring myself to press the blade a bit deeper, and be re-united with you again? One year later...

"It's been a year now. Feels like so much longer though, doesn't it?" I ask you, hardly hearing myself over the storm "Can't believe I held on for a whole year." I'm a liar, same as always, and I'm still lying. I'm not holding on, I'm slipping over the edge and scrabbling desperately to try and save myself, but it's impossible. When the time comes, I'm just going to relax and enjoy the fall.

And you can catch me at the bottom of it all...

I consider arranging the roses somehow, but they look sort of right, scattered randomly like that, so I move around them and settle against the gravestone.

The polished black marble is tragically cold and icy, but still I huddle closer to it as if it was a roaring fire, radiating heat and warmth and light and everything you gave me.

I'm more sheltered from the wind and the snow, which is already starting to bury the flowers. White flakes on the obsidian black blossoms, on the shining, diamond-carpeted ground, outlined against the India Ink darkness of the midnight. I wish the snow would bury me too, and we could sleep under the earth together, hearts cold and dead, everything black and white.

"Really a year..." I repeat into the blackness, staring at my vague reflection in the stone.

Obviously I look different than back then, I'm taller, seventeen now, but if anything I'm paler and even thinner, pining away after a lost angel in the garden of the dead.

My dark, ebony hair flies around my face, ruffled by the never-ending blizzard and falling in a long fringe across my face, concealing my azure eyes, rimmed with smoky dark kohl. Nowadays there are always dark streaks running down my cheeks, smudges caused by another painful memory, and I speak more sobs than words. A black jacket hangs loosely off my shoulders over a black short-sleeved shirt, the darkness making me look even paler, like a ghost myself.

Just a confused, frightened teenage boy. Nothing special, except to you, anyway.

You said I was beautiful.

But I can never have been as beautiful as you were.

And the picture I have of you in my head...well, more like a photograph album, actually...

The first day we met, when you were sitting outside the front entrance to the school.
You had just got off the coach with everyone else, and they were all milling around in chaos, but you just sat there, calm and isolated, like you were on another plane of existence.

Your hair was falling around your shoulders, soft auburn, and framing your delicate face in almost ethereal beauty. Your gorgeous emerald eyes, shiningly expressive and framed by thick, dark lashes. The smile playing around your lips, and how much I wanted to kiss were just perfect.

Like nothing could touch your beauty. Pure, shining perfection, like you were surrounded by an invisible force field that everything just bounced off. And I prayed I wouldn't be bounced off as well.

I remember you saying that you thought something similar about me, the first time you saw me. That precious compliment immediately painted my cheeks with a flush of scarlet, and I blushed terribly, not really believing, not thinking I was worthy to have your breath wasted on me by saying such things. And by the time I realized how deeply you did love me, you weren't there...

Despite the agonizing cold, outside and within, I manage a smile at this memory.

That's the portrait of you I'm going to keep forever engraved on my broken heart, my broken soul.


"Why?" I sob, pulling myself suddenly out of my memories, jerked back to reality by the arctic weather that makes even me shiver. Hot tears roll unchecked down my cheeks, falling and freezing in the air before they hit the snowy ground.

"I...I miss you so much...please..." I'm on my knees, hands resting on top of the gravestone, knuckles clenched white, fingers numb and beginning to be frost-bitten.

My shoulders shake with emotion, my breath coming in harsh, pained gasps. The condensed breath swirls in the air, reminding me of ghosts. Maybe it's my soul, and
I'm losing a little more if it with every breath I take. Impossible. I think my soul must be out here somewhere, wandering lost among the sorry little stone monuments along with yours.

"Well? Answer me, you fucking bastard! Why did you have to go? Why did they take you? WHY?" I scream at the empty air, collapsing back against the polished marble.

"I can't stand it any more...I...just...can't..." I gasp in between sobs, breaking down and letting everything that's inside my shattered heart come flooding out.

"Oh, God...please, stop crying."

"Lee?!" I look up sharply at the sound of his voice, scrambling to my feet against the
blizzard. It's him! He came back!

I hurriedly glance around, trying to see him. My heart swells up with hope, like I thought it never could again.

"Where are you?" I call, uncertainty creeping into my voice. The warmth drains rapidly out of my heart, and it plunges back down into my stomach with a painful thud. Stupid idiot. Now I think I can hear his voice in the wind. I must be going crazy.

"Please answer me..." I trail off miserably, tears already spilling out of my sapphire eyes again. That was horribly cruel.

I turn back to the grave, looking miserably down at the black roses. I blink in surprise, and kneel down to get a better look. No way, that's impossible...

My fingers are trembling slightly as I reach out a hand to the nearest of the roses, and grasp a handful of the feathers surrounding them. They aren't like normal feathers, they're bigger, and softer, and somehow...whiter. Pure, pale glistening white, delicate abalone flecked with threads of shining silver and gold. I scoop up a bunch of them in both hands and press them to my face, filling me with a warmth that seems to rush through my bloodstream and my whole body, a wonderful, comforting glow.

Every snowflake that has touched the roses has turned into an angel's feather.

I look back down and see something else glinting amongst the feathers and the dark petals. I brush them aside and grasp my fingers around the handle of a thin, silver dagger, the wicked point razor-sharp in the moonlight.

"Oh, I get it... so you miss me too."

I smile up at the sky. I know this must have been an awful decision for you. You understand it's better just to get it over with and put me out of my misery than for me to slowly waste away in suffering.

"Lee..." I sigh, taking my final breath of oxygen, closing my eyes and plunging the dagger into my heart. It only hurts for a second.

Glancing down, I stare in shock at the gushing crimson spilling on to my hands.

Another, more strangled breath, and I fall.

You catch me.

The glittering dagger tumbles on to the snow at our feet, stained dark, exquisite red.
I look up into your face, your beautiful viridian're just like I remembered.

You wrap your arms and your wings around my broken body, and the snow and the pain melt away, along with everything else.

I want to be with you forever...