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Windows to the Soul

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“They say eyes are windows to the soul. Do you believe that?”

His thoughts had been full of music, the playfulness of Mozart, but her words were unusual enough that he stopped. Standing under a streetlight, she was clear in the darkness, a stunningly beautiful woman, dark hair tumbling down to a dark dress, full length, that harkened back to an earlier age, much like his own thoughts tended to. “You are?” he asked, wondering if she was one of his students, although he tended to recognized them.

“I don’t believe them,” she said, chattering away as if she hadn’t heard him. “I have eyes but no soul.”

Intrigued, he leaned toward her. “What do you mean?” There were so many ways she could be going: meditation ideals relating to the idea of no-soul as the loss of ego; the C. S. Lewis quote that distinguished between being and having a soul; philosophies influenced by atheism.

“I did have a soul once, but it’s gone now, torn out almost a century ago. It drifted away in the wind.” Tilting her head, she gave him a puzzled look. “Do you see my poor, dead soul behind my eyes?”

Rubbing a hand through his hair, leaving a trail of gray spikes in its wake, he asked, “Ah, you haven’t taken anything, um possibly illicit, have you?”

“It just won’t do,” she said, shaking her head. “I have eyes but no soul; you have a soul but eyes as well.” He was about to take a step back when she grabbed him by the throat, lifting him off the ground. “Shhh,” she added. “I’m afraid this will hurt quite a bit, but everything will balance out in the end.” Her fingers darted for his eyes.