As the fire began to die, the youth looked for more wood. A table with three legs laid tilted to the floor. He wrenched one leg free with the casual twist of his hand, only then conscious of his actions. The youth knew he was gifted. For whatever reason, the unknown god granted his limbs with more strength than other men.
One look at the dying fire told him the table leg was too long. He regarded Dekra briefly, then grabbed both ends of the leg. Everyone feared his raw power; spurned him, and even called him possessed by demons. As he exerted pressure, the leg began to bow, creak, then abruptly snapped. Saying nothing, he placed the pieces in the fire.
Dekra might shun him as the others did; might, but he’d rather know sooner than later, now that he had established a rapport with her. He regarded her expression. She looked at him no differently, warming his heart to at last find someone to accept him.
Later the fire abated, as he huddled close. Dekra nestled in front of him without asking. She took hold of his wrist and draped it over her. Moments later, he heard the contented sound of her heavy rhythmic breathing. He soon closed his eyes to sleep. That was the best night of his life.
In the months that followed, their existence complimented each other perfectly. Dekra’s dainty fingers plucked food unawares from stalls in the market places and he protected her wherever she went. At night, she’d talk as he mainly listened. Each time they spoke together; each time they touched in any capacity, though never entwined as lovers, he felt closer to her.
Did I love her?
His pain gave him every indication, he did. Although he never tried to manipulate her, he felt assured that they would always be together. No one wanted her, and no one wanted him, but they wanted each other… at least he thought so.
A sneer etched itself on his face.
Men and women in white robes wandered the streets of the poorer quarter. They chimed bells and sang softly asking the homeless to join their family. They wanted her, and now he lived alone again, getting through each day without purpose. It didn’t seem possible, but now he was emptier than before the time he met her.
He cursed himself for reaching out to another human being. A person so stupid deserved only one punishment.
Tossing the meat across the floor, it came to a halt against the wall. Rats converged on it, as the cat pounced from the rafters. It bit into one of the rodents, causing it to squeak briefly. With the meat now cleared, the feline flattened his ears and chomped.
The youth ignored its unholy growling as he picked up a dagger, lying to his right. He placed the blade on his wrist, then decided against cutting. Putting it down on the floor, he looked up at the breach in the roof. That’s what he would do. He will climb up there and jump off the edge.