“Death, My Old Friend.”

“Mason refused to move. Not an inch, not a muscle. He held Sue in his arms as the light faded from her eyes. He could feel her heart beat in rhythm with his own, until it gradually slowed and eventually stopped. Her last exhale whispered into his ears, just like her breathing had from her pillow in the middle of the night when he would watch her sleep; a sound he would never forget, especially now.

An hour later, as her skin cooled to his touch, he still hadn’t moved. They huddled there together by the side of the road, the widening gap between life and death trying to pull them apart, but Mason refused to let go. The street lamp above him flickered sporadically as the cold winter breeze bit and clawed at his face, the blood beneath them already frozen. He had vowed to protect her, to keep her safe. At the moment this was all he knew to do; to hold her here, to keep the world away, even in death.

In the dark quiet places of his mind the demons stirred, slowly at first, then more vigorously as they realized the gatekeeper was gone. For months she had kept them in check, pushed them back, keeping them tamed with logic and love. He kissed her cold blue lips, bits of blood slipping into his mouth; pieces of her to remain within him forever. His tears fell, the warm salty stream burning against his frozen cheeks. Like an old friend, this sort of pain and sorrow had followed him all his life, always seeming to manifest itself the same way. Now as his broken heart bled into rage, the demons crept forward. The wall that locked away his secrets, the barrier that held back the unique way he perceived the world, shook and cracked as the monsters pounded from within. Unguarded, unchecked, the floodgates opened, and he surrendered to the madness and rage.”

~ Saint Monolith 2