The end of the world is in your eyes.
I see it. I see Armageddon reflected back at me. All the rage and hurt and confusion right there. I want, I wish I could say something to stave off the cataclysm that rages there. But I feel I have said too much already. I am the harbinger of this doom, after all. I need to fully acknowledge the part I played in this. I need to own this responsibility. If you were able to think lyrically at the moment, you might say I’m one of the fabled horsemen of the apocalypse.
Am I pestilence? No. You were more of the disease. You infected me. You took over my body in strange, unexpected ways that changed my chemistry, altered my mind, weakened my heart. I was out of breath because of you. I felt faint. I had trouble thinking clearly at times. I wasn’t as strong as I had been on my own, yet, ironically, I felt better than ever. This disease was subtle. It infected me slowly and yet all at once. It destroyed me while keeping me healthier than ever. Now that the disease has run its course, I’m nothing but a shell. My insides are gone, eaten by the pestilence that was you.
Famine? Maybe in some ways. I left you starving, after all. Starving for my thoughts, my history, my emotions. But I couldn’t feed you like that. I turned my back on your hunger for love, for understanding. That hunger was all-consuming. It was always in the front of your thoughts. And I fed it for a time. I did. I tried to keep you sated, but couldn’t continue to sustain you. So your hunger went unabated.
Eventually, all you knew was want. And I had nothing left to offer. But no, Famine is not quite right.
War? Well, there have been many battles. We fought with words sometimes. More often though our weapons were what we didn’t say, what we couldn’t. You won some of those battles. I won more, I think. Not that I feel like the victor though. Not even close. What do you call a series of fights where even if you win, you lose? There were no victories here, no dramatic last minute stands to trumpet and celebrate. Just drama.
No. Ultimately, I think the most appropriate role for me is Death. I brought death to your world. Death of your ego. Of your confidence. Of your reason and your sanity. And your heart.
I don’t deny it. I knew my part and I played it well. Saying I didn’t mean for this all to happen changes nothing, of course. Apologies mean nothing. And honestly, I would not have done anything differently. Our course was set from that first look. That first dance. That first kiss. There was no deviating from our path. Would you want it any differently though?
Our sails were full with a caressing wind for so long. We drifted past big beautiful mountains and quiet private coves. We swam in warm waters and braved cold winds. But we did it together. As one. As more than one. Something so much more. The fact that the journey was doomed from the start is not the point. Would you have started the voyage, I wonder, if you had known Death rode with you? Would you sacrifice all those memories, all those crying laughs and laughing cries? Because I would not. Even as the apocalypse rages in your eyes, I cannot regret making this journey with you. Our wanderings were intertwined for a time. That will have to be enough.
Thus, here I am, the horseman of Death, seeing the end of your world unfold before me. Despite what you think, I’m not happy. I fulfilled my purpose but I am not proud of my work. I merely followed my nature, as you did yours. There is no satisfaction to this. No congratulatory pat on the back and “Job well done.” There is only Death. And I have to leave you because I don’t want you to be around Death any longer. You need to live.