You promised me Paradise.

Once upon a time, there was a girl who fell on a young prince's sword, and as she shuddered and died under his weight, he made a promise to her.

She always preferred power to love anyway. Paradise was the consolation prize that would make the heavens weep, and she was content.

"Is it for lovers?" she would ask. Darcia only nodded solemnly, and drew his sword. Always, always she fell.

She said she hated him, because it was easier than hating herself. When Harmona looked at her with those trusting eyes, wrapped her arms around her and called her sister, she could only close her eyes, and swear to herself that she hated Darcia.

Always, always, she died beneath him. She bit her lip, and never screamed but for the first time and the last.

Darcia took his promises seriously. He sacrificed of his own body, his blood and sight, and returned to her changed. Harmona was distraught, but it was done.

A white wolf haunted Jagara's dreams thenceforth. It stole the screams from her throat, and drowned her in her own blood. Jagara took sleeping potion to escape it.

Paradise broke all their promises. It confused the lover with the loved, the one desired with the one possessed, and condemned them all for their tangled treachery.

Jagara's sleeping blood took its toll on Harmona instead. It did for her what Jagara had wanted it to do for herself—put her forever out of Darcia's reach.

They bled her dry to rid her of the poison, but it was never in her blood to begin with. Darcia clutched the sleeping girl, and glared up at Jagara with his mismatched, inhuman eyes, and the promises between them crumbled to dust.

Jagara cursed Darcia, cursed Paradise, cursed every one and thing but herself, and made her brittle kingdom a fortress around her..

After more years and more blood than either of them cared to remember, Jagara believed she loved herself enough to open her own Paradise. She had forgotten that Paradise calls old loves and promises. The flower maiden's wolf came to her, beyond possibility, beyond certain death.

And Darcia came to her from even farther.

They danced, same as ever, their bodies testing and pressing and lashing out in skill and fury, and she entreated him one last time to come to Paradise, it would be so easy, he only need love her for a moment.

He stared her down, inconsolable. There was but one thing that could happen.

So one last cruel time, she died beneath his sword with his name on her lips.

And forever thereafter, a black wolf stalked her dreams of death.