A/N: Raynen finally made me write this. Reviews welcome!


"Ray. Ray, listen. I'm sorry."

I cannot hear the words—I cannot see the face. All is wind and blurs. And demons and fears, agony and madness.

I know I am mad. I know I am dying. That frightens me more, for I know I am not fit to die. Which must make me madder, because I have never been in this much pain, never been so weak. Ai, I wish I could just die. The fear is everywhere—it is all I know. I wish I could escape. But I am trapped, already trapped.

My wife is dead. My children—such as they were—are with her. I used to go to the graves once a week, and let the wind rush around me and the salt run down my face. Now I could not make the trip if I wanted. And I do not want. I do not want them to see me as I am now.

Breaking. Broken.

At first I cried out to my god in fear. Then I cried into my fear in terror. There is nothing in me but a decaying self, digested by my own panic. They say there is nothing to scream at, nothing to hide from, but they cannot see it. They cannot hear it. They cannot help me.

O Eidon, who have I become?

Trap—Trap used to say fear devours everything. He used to say that only Eidon could devour fear. He knew I was no king, he knew I was a coward at heart. He was just trying to comfort me, to give me the strength I needed. But Eidon cannot conquer this mad terror.

Or I cannot submit to His power.

Yes, I fear even the One who would redeem me.

I cannot look at myself in the mirror anymore. Well do I remember the first morning I looked and saw it. My wife was dying from childbirth, my brother was waking up in slavery, my dearest, dearest friend was with him. I looked in the mirror and saw it. Then the fear began.

No, Lord, not I! No, Lord, please not me! I can't—I'm the king—I didn't mean—

Everyday it grew, until finally I lost sight of their world almost altogether. All I see now is the ghosts—all I can hear is the voices.

The gulls cry out at me in mocking, seducing, accusing voices. The ocean roams below me. I do not remember walking, but I stand on the cliff edge. Trap and I would sit here centuries ago, throwing rocks at the same birds that now drive me to the brink. I am sobbing, looking at their red eyes and the purple ocean below me.

I do not want this.

I am so afraid.

Shouting to the sky, I throw myself forward. I know immediately that I have made the worst mistake yet. I can hear their laughter as the rocks and sea reach for me.

Lord! Save me!

There is warmth. And white light.