Death is the most infinite thing to ever exist. I should know. I am Death. And this is the story of the woman I loved.
I first met her in Spring, when the warmth was hopeful and flowers unfurled their sleepy limbs and opened their eyes into the sun. I was there long before the kill. I watched her chase him, gun in hand, waiting for a clear shot. I waited with her. At the time, it was nothing, I hadn’t seen before. It was just my job. Nothing more. There was a resounding bang, and then a dull thud. She stood over the man’s lifeless body, and didn’t cry. She didn’t panic. She just stood there, emotionless, as she stared at his wide, unblinking eyes. Her first kill. I almost forgot to do my job, with her standing there, full of unadulterated courage and beauty. I could tell she was sad too, though. I could smell the toxic scent of unhappiness in the air. I leaned over the body, and touched the man’s still-warm forehead. His face began to glow, and his wispy soul drifted from his body. I inhaled it and smiled, at both the good and the bad the soul contained. His soul was sweet and sour at the same time, which wasn’t an unpleasant taste. Yes, I know I shouldn’t spoil your ending, but that’s what happens when you die. No Heaven, or Hell, there’s just me. Me and my impossible hunger. But anyway, onto more pleasant things.
I watched her that night. It wasn’t my place – it was against every law – but I didn’t care. I was much too curious for my own good. It’s one of my existential flaws. I was curious about her, about her life, and though I knew there would be more murders to be done by her hand, I didn’t want to wait. Waiting was all I ever did. Waiting got boring.
I watched her walk home and lock the door, and make tea. I watched her slowly break down when she thought nobody was watching. I watched with interest. She wasn’t the first murderer I’d encountered. She wasn’t even the first one with feelings. I was simply and inevitably drawn to her, pulled by an invisible rope that could never be touched or described. I watched her for a few more minutes before I left. I had a job to do, and I was getting hungry.
It was a long time before I saw her again. A year and a half, I believe it was, in mortal years. the winter had set in, the air crunching like the crisp leaves of Autumn, and the flowers closed their eyes and waited for the sweet regales of spring. I felt her presence before I saw her – it felt composed, calm. Completely unlike that of whom she was pursuing. It was a woman this time, her fear acrid and pungent in the cold air. I saw the knife before she did, in the hands of an expertly trained killer. The unfortunate victim didn’t even have time to squeak as the knife was thrust into her, then twisted in a perfectly executed manoeuvre. The killer remained a little longer this time, her hand reaching into the victims pocket. She pulled out a hard, dull object. She turned and left, not caring who found the body, because she’d been clever. She’d taken precautions. There was no one left in that place to find it. I inhaled and did my job, trying not to enjoy the rich taste of the deceased soul. My eyes were fixed on the hole the woman had left, the gap that could only be bridged by her unerring presence. I knew her hands would shake as she lifted the teacup to her trembling lips, how heavy it would feel in her bloodstained hands. I knew she had made another hole in herself, perhaps greater than that in any other. I looked down at the body in front of me and felt no pity. I was incapable of such an emotion. But Il felt something else – another stirring in the heart of a soulless being, a gap inside my supposed heart. It was a nameless emotion, without purpose or logic. It was simply there. I shook my head, trying to clear it, and moved on to my next job.
The next time I saw her was the last. She was running, not after something, but from it. Me. it was time. Order had to be restored, justice to be carried out. She needed to face the consequences. Almost as suddenly as she had started running, she stopped. She turned. She faced me. And just like the first time, she had no tears in her eyes. She was unafraid. For the first time, she spoke to me, softly, carefully, her measured tone lifting to my listening ears. “Go ahead,” she said, her voice unwavering, “take me.” I was still for a moment, uncertainty weighing on my mind. She had acceptance in her eyes, steadily blossoming into strength like blood onto the shirt of the wounded man. I slowly walked toward her, my footsteps silent, only as Death’s can be. I was directly in front of her certain, unflinching body. She stared fearlessly into my black soulless eyes. I tilted my face towards hers, and brought my lips to her lips. I felt her soul disconnect from her body, and flow into mine, as her body went limp in my arms. I lowered her body to the ground. Her eyes were empty labyrinths, full of secrets that no one would ever know. Her soul tasted different, empty somehow, like there was nothing left in it. It was then that I knew she had died long before my embrace had ever claimed her. And suddenly, I recognised the stirring deep within my being’s centre. It was sadness.
For nothing and no one escapes the destruction of Death. i am the only constant, the only certainty, and I am not allowed the abundance of mortal life. For Death is not supposed to wish for Life.