It has been seven years.

Seven years of running and fighting, of snatches of nightmarish sleep, of staggering relentlessness.

He can steal a few moments now and then, moments like this one; a moment to pause and take stock, to count heartbeats and be relieved that his heart does in fact still beat.

He reaches up and fingers brush hesitantly against the pendant that hangs there - has hung, for those seven years. He wonders for a brief moment that he can't really spare if perhaps his possession thereof has created two of them; he half-wishes that it does, because it means that somewhere the woman he loves - who has, in this time, never met him - is wearing this same stone, on this same chain.

Closing his hand around it firmly presses the tips of the crescent into his palm, a reassuring pain that reminds him that no matter the struggles now, it was worth it. Everything was worth it, for that one perfect moment that has now never happened.

The world turns. It will turn her back to him eventually; the world is round.

This is why he runs.