A dark-eyed stranger, nearly transparent, climbs into the half-drowned boat of an ageless man, pensively, yet silently. He seats himself, and the two specters face each other, one with the dark haze of guilt, the other with the shadowed chill of indifference.
The boatman takes up his oars, impassive as the lake he rows upon. The stranger gazes behind, at the last bit of landscape, before his eyes are plunged into grey similarity.
"Why am I here?" the stranger asks, more to himself, or perhaps an unseen guardian.
"I was good, I went to mass, I prayed, I became a priest, for God's sake!" The stranger crosses himself at this curse.
The boatman laughs. "Everyone comes down here, the righteous, the wicked. Why are you any different?"
"I was sent to save the world from a girl, an Eve who would take us from our second Eden and send us into the desert again. Should I not be rewarded for this?"
"No one is rewarded, not in this place."
"If only I could have killed her while I had the chance. I waited too long. Lyra…the name itself should be a curse."
The boatman chuckles to himself, and the stranger gazes on, impatiently.
"I know this girl, this Eve. Were I you, I would not be as thankless as you are."
The priest can only stare at the boatman.
The boatman sees the priest's shock, and answers, "Oh, but you won't find her here now. She's long gone."