She stood between two trees, and placed her hands upon their trunks. The bark was rough under her palms, and it seemed to be pressing back against her in some sort of botanical embrace. She looked up at the sky through the lace of intertwined branches. It was gray. The wind pulled at her robes; They swirled around her. It knew. The wind knew. It seemed to whisper to her, teasing her guilt out of her eyes. It crept up behind her, pressing her clothes against her body. She shivered. She had run away to get out of a shadow, yet here she was, folded into one again. A twig snapped behind her. She whirled around, and saw him.

He was staring at her, like a cat watches a mouse. He had always looked at her like that. Waiting for a weak moment, waiting to pounce. She narrowed her eyes and folded her arms. He rushed forward, took her hand in his, and kissed it.

"Why have you followed me here?" she hissed.

"You know the answer to that question, possibly better than I."

She glared at him. "Of course I do. If you knew, truly understood, my motives, you would have let me alone."

"You know I could never do that. I sought you for myself, not just your mother."

"Tell her she is mistaken. As for you, I am repulsed by you. Leave me be, or I shall hex you into oblivion."

"What foul talk is this? Were I to take you as my own, I should teach you refinement!"

"Then I shall remain unlearned. You do not love me. Desire, yes, but love, no. Remove your hand from mine, and depart. My tolerance for your company is limited to but three minutes."

"Foolish woman! How could I have expected you to plumb the depths of my longing for you?'"

"How could I have expected you to behave civilly?"

He snarled, and pulled a dagger from within his traveling cloak. With eyes like flame and a roar of fury, he plunged it into her breast. She fell down upon the fallen leaves, seeming to melt into the ground, one with it. She moved no more. He gasped to find her blood on his hands. It dripped from his fingers steadily, like water from a leaky faucet. Drip, drip, drip, till he could stand it no more. With trembling hands he turned the dagger's blade towards his own chest, and drove it into his heart.

There they lay, the moonlight painting ghostly shapes upon their cheeks through the delicate weave of boughs and twigs. Their bodies settled into the soft earth. With time, moss grew over the gentle mounds that were their bones. With each rain, they fade more and more.