“Can you not feel her love as she watches over us?”
“No, I can’t.”
Frank frowned, “Have you accepted her into your soul, completely and utterly?”
“Yes, I have. I could feel it yesterday, but not today.”
Frank looked at Bob, his face was still, but his eyes betrayed his worry, “Then you must have done something to offend her. Think, was there anything, anything at all that you did differently since yesterday?”
“No, I swear. I ate dinner with everyone, then I went to my room to meditate. I slept then got up for morning prayers.”
“What did you meditate on?”
“Nothing, I just let my mind go blank and felt her love filling me, guiding me.”
Frank nodded distractedly, “Hmm, perhaps this is a test.”
“Maybe…Maybe if I saw her she could tell me what I did wrong.”
Frank frowned again, “Perhaps, but she might strike you down for interrupting her.”
“I’m willing to take that chance. Life isn’t worth living if she isn’t in it.”
Frank nodded slowly, “I’m sure she will grace you with her love if you’re truly deserving.”
Bob nodded quickly, hopefully. The feeling of warmth and security, of loving and being loved was gone, replaced by a vast emptiness. How could he go on living like this? So alone, so unloved. How could anyone live like this? It would be better to be struck down and freed from this agony than have to endure it for the rest of his life. He would do anything for her love again. Anything.
Bob stood outside her room, there were no guards, there didn’t need to be. No one would ever dream of harming her, she was more precious than anything on earth. Anyone who saw her would instantly love her. He raised his hand and gently knocked, a thrill of fear going through him. What if she was angry at his interruption? Or worse, what if she refused to see him entirely?
“Come in.” He shivered at the sound of her words, her voice was smooth and sweet, almost melodic, it reminded him of lazy summer days. He opened the door, heart thudding heavily in his chest. She was sitting on a chair, a regular chair like anyone else would. She was so humble, many in her position would want a throne. She smiled when she saw him and he felt his heart ache again, he needed her love more than anything, if she denied it to him he would simply stop, he would be unable to eat or drink, nothing would ever satisfy him as her love did. “Ah, Bob” He shivered as his name danced across her tongue, “Is everything all right?”
It took him a moment to speak, “No, I’m afraid it isn’t” She frowned, Bob felt another thrill of anxiety, he was awful, worse than dirt to make her worry.
“Something has happened to me, I can’t feel you anymore, did I do something to anger you? What ever it was tell me and I will do everything in my power to fix it.”
Her eyes grew sad, “No, you did nothing wrong. It is not your fault, it is mine.”
“What? No, nothing could be your fault.”
She smiled at him, the smile lit the room, almost blinding in its beauty, “It’s nice of you to say, but I can make mistakes, just like everyone else. Last night as you were meditating, I could feel you, your strength, your love for me. I tried to help, give you more, but I’m afraid I over did it.”
“Over did it?”
She nodded, “Yes, and I’m afraid I damaged the part of you that allows you to feel my love.”
Bob started trembling, “But you can fix it right?”
She paused for a moment, then nodded. “Yes, I can, but I’m afraid the cost will be high.”
“Anything. Anything at all.”
“To feel my love again, you will have to become one of my high priests.”
Bob gasped, the honour, it was too great, he was not worthy of it, he opened his mouth to speak but she raised her hand. “It is a difficult job, and a thankless one, but you will feel my love with you always. It will be stronger than you’ve ever felt it. But you will need to make a sacrifice. You will have to spend your life serving me, you will not be able to leave, you will never have a family besides us. I’m afraid you will lose the ability to speak and the transformation will be painful, almost unbearably so. It will take you to the very brink of death.”
Bob opened his mouth, then closed it. He opened it again, “It would be an honour. Living like this is worse than death, I will do anything for you.”
She nodded as if she expected no other answer. You will not see me again after this for a year, but you will feel my love. The other high priests will look after you and train you in your duties. The days will be long and tiring, but there is no higher honour.”
He nodded quickly, “What do I need to do.”
“It’s simple, you must kiss me on the lips.”
Bobs mouth dropped open, did he dare? He had no other choice. He wasn’t worthy. His feet started to move him forward, her eyes locked on his. He leaned over her, the scent of her was intoxicating, she smelled of everything good in the world, each one identifiable but blending together at the same time. Their lips met, hers were soft and hot. He closed his eyes, sinking deeper into the kiss. Her tongue parted his lips, slipping through, teasing his. He responded in kind, their tongues moving over one another. Hers withdrew from his mouth and his chased after. Her teeth bit down in one swift movement. Pain, white hot and unbearable, but he didn’t pull away, he leaned into it, welcoming it. When she broke the kiss he collapsed, blood covered them both. Two high priests stepped from the shadows, “Take him away, train him.” She looked down at Bob, “I am truly sorry for what I have done to you, but there was no other way.” The two high priests dragged Bob from the room, a single tear slid down her cheek.