Sometimes you think you’re done with a story, but it’s not quite done with you. That’s what happened here. The story of the crossroads is still lurking about the corners of my mind so keep an eye out, and I hope you enjoy this next instalment.
The Jade Writer Girl.
The first girl he had ever kissed had been two years older than him. He was nine and a half and small for his age, but that hadn’t stopped him from grasping her shoulders, reaching up on his tip toes, and planting a big, clumsy kiss straight on her lips.
They were full lips. Big and quick to smile. But that hadn’t been why he kissed them. In truth, he hadn’t even really liked the girl they belonged to. She had shrieked at him so fiercely he hadn’t ever dared kiss her again.
Yet, she had been his first. Not because he liked her, not even because he’d really wanted to, but because a demon had once told him to try.
Ten years. Ten years before that very same demon would come to claim his soul with a kiss of her own. She had told him to practice. To ‘try it before you’re too grown up.’ It was a warning. He wasn’t going to grow up. He would never reach adulthood. He knew that. Had accepted it, even.
So, he took her advice. He tried. He practiced. He became renowned for it. The little boy who kissed girls. Just once. Once per girl. That was enough. He found that every kiss was unique. Some felt nice. Some felt sloppy. Some just plain awkward. Most were just okay.
As he grew so did his experience. He gave kisses freely and more often yet he found that the results rarely varied. They were okay. Not bad. Not great. Just okay.
The older he got, however, the closer he came to the end of those ten short years, the more he wondered what it would be like to kiss her.
Her lips which had been a soft pink, quirking up in a curious smile as she stared at him out of impossibly red eyes. Eyes that had bored through him, seen right to his very soul.
When he wasn’t thinking about kissing, he was thinking about her.
He knew he shouldn’t have. Knew that wasting his precious, limited time was ungrateful—stupid, even. There were others who would have given anything just to have the time he’d had. Others who would have given their souls—like he had.
A soul for a kiss.
Well, in truth it was more than a kiss, but the reason behind their deal no longer mattered.
He tried to focus on other things. His grades bounced around between poor and top of the class depending on his interests. He studied animals, built science projects, kissed girls—he’d even kissed a boy. Twice. Once just to see (don’t knock it til you try it was the saying, after all), then once more just to be sure.
It wasn’t for him.
He wondered if she ever thought of him?
He certainly thought of her. Of those red eyes that followed his dreams. The girl who was a demon, with hair that glowed like fire in the morning sun. She stood waiting for him when his eyes closed, standing barefoot in the dirt of the crossroad with the spring fields glowing golden behind her.
He counted the days until he would see her again. Until she would come to claim his soul with a kiss. A kiss that he hoped wouldn’t be clumsy.
He found that clumsy kisses weren’t so much because one had never kissed before, but more because of a lack of compatibility. Sometimes there was just no way for two people to mesh. That was okay. For every person that didn’t mesh, there was one that would.
He wondered, for ten years, if he would mesh with her? Until one day the ten years was up and she stood in the doorway of his room.
‘You’re here,’ he said. ‘Hello Morgana.’
Her voice was both soft and smooth, yet with a faint husky undertone. As if she didn’t speak often. As if she’d waited these ten years to speak only to him.
She closed the distance between them, her presence engulfing him, making his breathing quicken and his pulse race. She stared at him, red into green, and then, before he had a chance to brace himself, pressed those pale pink lips against his.
It wasn’t what he had expected. It wasn’t awkward. It wasn’t clumsy. It wasn’t even okay.
This kiss…this kiss was fire. It was heat. It was light. It was everything.
Her lips were dry and surprisingly cracked, chaffing against his with a fierceness that was at once rough and gentle. She was a contradiction. Her hair of fire, her eyes of blood, her hounds of hell—her touch, so soft and gentle.
She pulled back the faintest bit, so that their lips just barely touched. He opened his eyes, staring at her in wide wonder.
A kiss to end all kisses. A kiss to end his life.
Without a thought he pressed back to her, closing his eyes even as he felt the beginning of something wrong pulling at the core of him. His soul. Crying out a warning. A warning he ignored. He knew the price he had to pay for dealing with a demon. He knew there was no fighting it. No taking it back.
So instead he succumbed. Gave in. Relinquished control.
Instead he focused on this last kiss. So much better than his first.
His kiss with a demon.
No…his kiss with a demon…who was once a girl. A girl like him. Full of curiosity and wonder. Full of fire. Full of light.
In this last kiss, he saw her for what she really was. Beneath the darkness. Beneath the demon. She was a girl.
A girl that was, for this one moment, his.