Lulu finds herself torn between the life she's always lived and the life that's suddenly crashing down upon her.
Their moment had been just that, a moment, and then it had faded like a pyrefly into darkness.
Lulu had borne heavier secrets in her time, but none seemed to strike at her heart the way this did. Every step felt surreal, weightless. Her soul alternated between peace and turmoil. One moment she was safely nestled in her mind, and the next she struggled with her own guilt. Every minute of her life seemed to have been building up to one moment with Auron; now that she had found it, what was next?
Everything seemed so unfamiliar. The world unfurled before her, rippling with new vivacity. The edges of her vision glimmered scarlet, and even the dull greys and blacks of the earth pulsed with colour. Lulu wanted desperately to breathe in this new existence and let it fill her lungs to bursting, but that inner struggle held her back. She feared it, feared it so deeply that she felt it following close behind every move she made. A shadow of doubt trailed her like a forgotten friend, tainting the vibrancy of everything around her.
They had shared a brief moment, so brief that it felt unreal. Lulu seemed to have dreamt it, yet she knew she couldn’t have. She couldn’t have invented the hazy delusion that had shattered her boundaries just long enough for Auron to find his way in.
Will you regret it? Tomorrow morning, when the sun is up and the journey begins again, will you regret me?
He had seized her wrist with such sudden force that the black leather had left welts on her skin.
You can’t actually think that I would do something I thought I might regret.
I don’t know. I’ve got no one to judge by. I’ve never met or heard of another woman you’ve kissed.
Lulu mouthed her uncharacteristically playful words again, echoing them soundlessly with soft lips that barely moved. Kissed. It felt heavy and experimental on her tongue, but she tested its unfamiliar shape and let herself say it aloud. His face was there instantly in her mind’s eye, hovering just beyond the grasp of reality. The glint in his eye played across the web of her vision with its spidery, imaginary prowl. She closed her eyes to savour the few seconds she had with her apparition before it melted into a whisper.
Too soon the fire pulsed beneath her lids, warning her that her heart was not free. She opened her eyes and found him suddenly there, an apparition made flesh. She was embarrassed to be caught in a rare moment of weakness, and once more she was reminded that she still bore the chains of Chappu’s ghost.
Everything will be different now. For us. For everyone.
Yes, but Auron… I don’t think everyone should know…
No. But while they may not measure up to our standards, they are at least somewhat perceptive. Surely someone will notice.
His hand snaked through the air to brush the thin veil of lace separating their fingers. Lulu’s throat tightened, her breath locked in her chest with ropes of flame. Once more, a wave of doubt reared within her, but he somehow seemed to sense its invisible presence. With one kiss, Auron burned the ache from the surface of her soul with a single, cauterizing touch. It was a stolen kiss, as all of them were, plundered in the invisible night that seemed to grace their solitude. It was heavy, and yet she could barely feel it.
I don’t know how far you’re willing to take this. I won’t let you trifle with me.
I could never. I am willing… I am longing to feel truth from one human being. You’ve given me a taste of something I thought impossible.
I thought I’d lost it forever.
She let her body slide closer to his, ebony and crimson flowing together into one river. No, she had not lost it forever, though she’d spent years trying to convince herself otherwise. She had merely misplaced it, letting trauma wipe away the memory until she was ready.
And Auron had made her ready.
"There was a moment
Between the twilight and the dawn
We danced together
We stayed out just a little too long
I need to hear you
I need to feel the way you breathe
There's something happening
Our eyes are just beginning to see"