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248 pages, Paperback
First published January 31, 2021
You slapped him.
That slap snapped me out of a reverie I had been living in for hundreds of years. It obliterated any grace I had left to give you, any lies I was still telling myself about your good intentions and your savior's heart.
“You could have kissed me or slit my throat and either would have made as much sense.”
“Through her eyes, I was able to experience the story for the first time all over again.”
“I want to live. But I want to live in the world, not on the outskirts of it.”
“The people only call me cruel because it’s easier to think of a woman as cruel than competent.”
You held him by the throat, watching waves of rapture cross his face, while Magdalena and I drank from him. He looked like a lithe young Christ, crucified between two beautiful women with you as his cross.
People aren’t meant to live forever. I know that now.
I will render you as you really were, neither cast in pristine stained glass or unholy fire. I will make you into nothing more than a man, tender and brutal in equal measure, and perhaps in doing so I will justify myself to you. To my own haunted conscience.
You usually looked at us like we were hoards of gold, precious and rarefied. But now you looked at me the way you looked at one of your books. Like you were draining me of all useful knowledge before tossing me aside.