The Gate is a very large gap in an otherwise strong wall.

For a very long time, every day I would go and stand guard at the Gate. To be sure that nothing from the Outside came in to poison my safe Inside.

In the middle of the night.

Every night.

For a very long time.

Once, only once, I wanted to cross that threshold.

It wasn't anything I touched or heard, or felt, or tasted…

I smelled it.

I smelled something that nearly made me walk into the unknown.

The unknown, where everything could be so much better.

I didn't know how anything could be better than my Inside.

But that would be the point, wouldn't it? The unknown. I didn't know what was on the other side…

And I could smell my Yuki. The odd soapy lavender smell of Yuki, still sleeping in our bed inside…

I wanted to walk into the gap that smelled of my Yuki.

And then I came to my senses and I was staring at the abyss, the whole in my Inside that let the dirty Outside in.

And I walked away.

Our emotions do not define us. Nor do our actions.

What defines us… is choice.

The choice to remain in the Known and leave the Unknown unknown…

That choice takes strength.

And that is what defines me.