We ride home on her second hand, cream white Vespa. I hold onto her on the back, my arms around her middle, my head lain against hers. She’s given me her candy apple red helmet to wear, the only one she has.
The little back woods road that is closed off from the sky. Thick fingers of bare, craggy branches close themselves around us above. November, time change, and leaving high school it’s almost dark.
We ride to a little trail head. A thin parting in the thick forest, what was our childhood jungle. She parks the Vespa by the side of the road, hoping it will be safety as we go to bound ourselves in ceremony.
She holds my hand, like an angel holds one of it’s charges, not like a young woman in love. We love each other but we are not in love. We are lost souls, perhaps changelings, perhaps hybrids.
She’s shown me the signs of her big black eyes that she hides. She’s shown me the signs of the scars and the darkness in her blood. She’s shown me the words of her torment that hit me in the gut, the poetries of puppets.
We come to a little circle, a fairie circle where nothing grows, where she was left by the things, aliens or demons in the sky. Her parents, caretakers found her, loving her while giving her to her tormentors.
We sit facing each other, in the cold evening, in the almost kisses of our misting breaths. Cross legged like sages. She has the softest tenderness in her eyes, a sadness that tears open my heart.
She takes my closed hand and pulls it to her, opens it palm up. She bends down and kisses my palm. She pulls a stainless steel knife from her pocket, and slices open my hand. She then slices her own.
We conspire, mixing breath. We bound each other, know siblings and lost souls, in the mixing of our blood. One soul forevermore. Her curse becomes my curse, but she will always be with me.
We embrace, still cross legged, and keep silence and send prayers through our tears to the other. We all need a warm heart in the night. Demons always come, from the sky and from our broken hearts.
We walk back to the Vespa, her again leading me by the hand, and we find it safe. She again gives me the helmet. We ride in the dark, the stars cruel mockeries of the hope of escape from this rotten world.
The light shines into the half life darkness, and I rest my head on her shoulder, knowing the things that will come in the night, but I have a true love and a true soulmate, a true love untainted by sex and desire.
When we graduate in May, we are leaving forever, heading west to join the war.