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His flame is strong

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You exist in darkness. The artificial night of blocked light and fragile walls. Of solitude and the emptiness of your own mind.

You are darkness. The absence of light, of matter, of time. You are energy blacker than the black between stars. Drawn together. Bound. Compacted into solidity.

You are sleeping. The world turns. Night, then day. Night, and then day. Millions upon millions upon billions of mortal lives flaring and dying. Night again. You sleep.

You are alone. There are none here equal to you. None here to rival you. No energy here to feed you. Sometimes you get the vague taste of an almost-familiar energy, there and gone like a mortal breath on the wind. But it’s diluted near beyond recognition. Not of you and yours. A descendant, perhaps, hundreds and hundreds of times removed. Tainted.

Rarely do you catch his taste. Not as strong as you, not as pure. Your gift to him is still tainted with the constraints of mortality. Still fragile. But strong. He’s a single stray wind gust caught in the edges of your maelstrom. Drifting astray, fleeing, but always being drawn back. Never allowed to escape. He fights you. Even now. He doesn’t know it’s you he fights, but he fights all the same.

You sleep for a long time. Starving. Waiting. It’s him that wakes you. It’s his energy, enhanced and forever bound by your own. Closer than it’s been in forever and a breath. A spark, only. But a spark is all you need.

You wake.

You were many, once. Or not many. More than one.

Four.

Four, you and your brethren were. Then, together and whole. Now, separate and broken. Weakened. But not weak.

You taste him again. And you feed.

Something. Someone. Close, but not close enough. You’ve enough energy to reach out, but not reach.

He comes again. You feed again.

You reach. You touch. They wake.

They feed.

You are two, now. They are closer to him, can feed more easily, more frequently. They grow stronger.

You rarely taste him now. Can no longer feed from him. You don’t starve, but you don’t strengthen either.

That’s okay. He’ll come back. He can’t escape you. You’re patient. You’ve waited. You can wait some more.

You reach for them. They reach back to you. They feed from him. You feed from them.

You are two, now. You grow stronger.

He returns. They come with him. You’re not together, not whole. Not yet. You’re still only two, not four. But you’re closer. And he returns again. Again and again, he returns. And you feed.

He leaves, and two becomes one again. He returns, and one becomes three.

He stays, and you all feed.

You grow stronger. He fights you. He is strong. You are stronger.

You feed. You search.

You find. You reach.

You are three and they are one. Close, but not close enough.

Two and three go with him. You and one remain. They feast.

He returns. You are three and one. You are stronger.

He needs you. He begs you. He offers to you.

You accept.

He is yours.

They are taken. Three and one again become three. You are stronger now. You reach. You touch. He stays with you. He is always with you now. He is in you. You are in him. He feeds you. You feed them. They reach.

He brings them back.

Three and one become four. Four become One.

You wake.