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Embers by Valentino-James Carmody, North Hertfordshire College

February 3, 2022

Fur upon his skin, his skin upon mine, generously grazing on top of one another. I felt a warmth of love like a fire inside myself, a fire brighter and warmer than the one atop the firewood. It wouldn't last I knew it wouldn’t, all I was to him was warmth, warmth to keep the cold at bay, to keep death off his doorstep. Although to me, it was more than warmth, more than he knew, more than I wanted him to know. It was love. Stupid love. The kind of love that would not be repaid to me with anything other than stupid satirical shame and a slap to the face.

The fur upon our skin shifted, his skin no longer upon mine. A shiver ran down my back as the fire inside me retreated to embers like there was nothing left to burn. This I knew would last, the embers, the remnants of the love I once felt waiting to be re-ignited by whomever can refuel the embers.


I woke up early, unsure what time it was because no light filled the room. I laid there wondering what to do, whether to wake him up too or whether I should leave him in his serene sleep. I wanted that fire back, the embers are not enough now I found someone who can fuel them. I stood up. The bitter frost creeping at my toes as if they owed them. I stumbled my way to the brazier that once held the fire. It had all crumbled to ash, the embers were no more, so I found what I could and rebuilt the fire, it waved at me as it blazed atop the firewood, crackling like twigs in a desolate forest.

I stumbled back to the bed, back to what I wanted to be my fire, what I wanted to be like an inferno unstoppable by nothing but the sea. To this fire, I was nothing but warmth, a warmth of fire I wanted to fuel. I crept beside my fire looking at it with nothing but adoration. I laid a kiss upon its cheek like a spark burning me as I do. He was awakened by my kiss, and he looked at me with nothing but confusion, nothing but pure confusion. I could see it in his stunning sapphire eyes, he was shocked. I regret what I had done. This act of stupid love has cost me. He moved towards me, getting closer to my face, I noticed he was blushing and then unexpectedly, he returned the spark with nothing other than a kiss upon my cold blue lips, a kiss I would never forget even when my time in this world came to an end. I felt a warmth, a warmth of love like a fire inside myself, a fire brighter and warmer than any fire atop the firewood. The embers reignited, blazing like an inferno tearing thought a forest. I smiled at him, and he smiled back. I had my embers but now I have my fire.