In a planet that found itself without a fancy name, lay cities full of extraordinary people. In the blink of an eye these people grew twice in size, then they quadrupled, and then it was simply unfathomable to see a place not populated by these people. In one such city, amongst one crowded street, hurried a man. This man wasn’t particularly special, but when the big guy from above looked down, he saw something piercing: he saw what some consider the worst form of pain, the kind that pulls people down into the depths of sorrow only to abandon them there and find a new target. The kind that doesn’t emit physical scars but pulls the heart so drastically, that it can’t ever recover. But this man, oblivious of the start of his doom, walked past his destiny, looking at a small rectangular metal box. The big guy waved his large fingers and set forth the man on the path of understanding what made him human: pain.

The man was hurrying to his next meeting; he almost crashed into a young woman in white but dodged her the very last second, all while not looking away from his phone. But before he reached his location for the hour, he felt a hand upon his back, so light it had to be made of feathers, yet commanding, gentle but firm, as if the wind reached out to him and ushered his attention away; the slight feel of that wispy hand jerked him out of the daily ramblings of his everyday life and forced before his eyes the sickening image of his worst nightmare. He almost looked away at the abruptness of it all; the unseen pothole in the smooth road, the missed thorn in the most beautiful rose, his empty life just seemed to melt away like the candle at their last dinner. The dinner in which her absent eyes, where the golden flame danced with the brown, trapped his wandering gaze as the withering candle rose and fell with each dying breath, taking with it all his suspicions and mistrust leaving him susceptible to her enchantments. And oh was she magical, a different being, her smile was brighter than any human and her laugh was sweeter than any music she insisted on listening to; she filled his void with such vigour that the vessel of his heart broke and her love seeped through his veins until it echoed in every part of his body, and his heart changed rhythm as if it were an impatient child changing the static to match its favourite channel; as if it was trying to find another heart, and soul to understand, to explore, to confide in.  And out of all the millions of hearts in the world, his chose hers, and that meant everything. She was the gush of wind on a dry day, a glass of water to a parched throat; she was a sprout of purple in his world of greys and blacks. Black. That was what he felt now. The inky blackness of realisation crept upon him like a scathing creeper on an unfortunate tree; a slithering snake climbing stealthily up the tree of his body to capture the eggs of his mind. 

The blackness filled the void of colour she brought to him, filling him with scathing memories of each time life went against him. Each cutting deeper and deeper into his broken soul until his eyes held no more, and every spectator saw the devastating power of pure love. Emotion spurted out of him so aggressively, like every drop of suppressed emotion combined to form a single squirt of a fountain; and they fell. Despite not crying at his father's funeral, despite not crying at his brother's abandonment, his tears leaked out of the rigid four walls down at her unfaithfulness. Such was the unforgiving power of love. It reduced him, from the powerful, protected person he was and exposed him to the pure and innocent emotion, and just when he could finally bring himself to enjoy it, love took it away with a cruel sweep of its hand; and broken, it leaves the strongest men, such is the power of love. It is like a cigarette; when young you always promise not to fall to its luring charms, when older you are seduced just to try it out, and it draws you in, and you wanting more fall into its trap and every drag it pulls you in more, until you can't live without it, when that happens, nothing, nothing can save you; you gave yourself to it, you gave your future to it, you are to blame; and it kills you and unfortunately, like a cigarette, no one blames love, because at the end when the medical examiner will write asphyxiated, no one will care what caused it, and no one will care why. But he cared why, he cared why she did such a thing, why she sacrificed their perfect world for one she barely knew, and within his subjective judgement he didn't realise his answer was right in front of him. 

The woman was a dreamer, or at least what she claimed she was. She was the kind fought for it all on her own; but he could not see her dreams, her future, all that she wanted for her life, for it was covered by what he painted as theirs. And when she found her home in another soul, one who understood her, celebrated her, enjoyed her; spent every moment making her feel loved and adored, she understood that she didn’t have to settle for broken promises and sheltered emotions. She understood when he did the little things, a kiss, a touch, a look, that it made her feel like someone else. In one such perfect moment, where their eyes were locked their lips coming close, came a bloodcurdling yell, and when she looked back, she saw what she had slain. The most powerful man she knew, the bravest and strongest, was broken beyond repair because of her simple kiss. This man who she knew loved her, who she knew wanted to spend his life with her, lay screaming on his knees in such pure angst that it broke her heart too. She had to remind herself that she was unfaithful but not unjust, but her betrayal hung heavy in the air and fell with his tears. But when she looked at him, she felt a part of her heartbreak lose; she could have saved him the pain of seeing his love in another’s arms; she could have saved him the trouble of loving someone unfaithful, but she just kept placing herself above him. She, she had done that. She had broken him. She was to blame. But this was something he could not fathom, that was enough, that it wasn’t his fault she left, that it wasn’t his fault at all; so, he blamed himself. Every night when she lay with her new man, and when he lay alone, this moment replayed in their minds, until she heard the terrible news, and ran the room full of people dressed in black, and heard someone say: asphyxiated.