Guilt of Paris.

Guilt.

The only thing the Trojan prince felt as the arrow pierced his chest.

Guilt.

Twas a familiar sensation to the young man,

Always wrapped around his mind,

Like a constricting serpent.

Guilt.

It was one of the few emotions he felt in his last days.

Grief, wrath, shame,

Where among the few.

But, here in his last hour,

There is only the worst.

Guilt.

The young prince, knowing he had only a short time left on this earth, longed,

He hungered,

To feel something else;

The love he once felt for his fair Spartan wife,

The warmth of holding his infant nephew,

Or the joy he felt in the presence of his late, beloved, brother.

Instead there were faces.

The faces of dying men lying on the beaches of Troy,

Screaming in agony,

As their thick blood stains the hot sand.

The pain filled faces of their widows,

Quivering with the heartache of loss,

Their screams of grief to much to bear.

The fatherless children,

The kidnapped maidens,

The crippled veterans.

He saw them all.

He felt their pain.

He felt their pain, he had caused.

All because of a simple, lustful love.

As the hours went on,

And the prince continued his long journey into death,

The guilt only swelled.

Continuing to constrict it's oily, domineering self around the prince's mind,

Until, he wished to feel no more.

Not the affection of a beautiful woman,

Nor the happiness of a child or a loved one.

No.

The young prince wished to only,

Fall into a deep, black,

Nothingness.

Instead, the pitiful, slowly dying prince heard the cries of his loved ones.

Their moans of grieving,

Their whimpers of sadness,

And their grunts of frustration,

Trying to save his doomed soul,

"Fools!" The prince wanted to scream at his family,

"Can you not see this is what I want?!"

But, alas, the prince could not speak.

For the serpent of guilt was too much for his anxious mind.

Above the many cries, one stood out to the prince,

This cry made the ever present serpent tighten its greasy hold on his mind,

Constricting to the point of agony.

The cry belonged to his wife.

His beautiful, Spartan wife.

The sensation of pure love he thought he had once felt was no more,

There was only guilt.

The guilt of being the cause that forced her to leave her young daughter,

Guilt of causing her former husband to be wifeless,

Guilt of choosing her over his family,

Over his city.

Guilt of feeling some resentment towards her.

But above all,

Guilt of what their forbidden, shamed love caused.

It was then, the death offered its cold, greedy hand to him,

And the prince, without a second thought to what he was leaving behind, took it.

Shame the serpent of guilt does not stop at the sweet relief of death.