The Last Letter of A. Marquis
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My dearest Elizabeth,

It has been so long since I last saw your face, although I do not know precisely the amount of time that has passed. For me, I feel centuries have crawled across and marked my skin- but through the trials and tribulations, through the realms I have bore witness to- I know that it may have only been mere moments in your life.

In a way, I pray you never receive my correspondence.. torturous as it may be, given the now insurmountable distance between us.

As I write to you, I sit with legs dangling against a lonesome wind- hanging off the edge of a cliff face, overlooking a darkened sea. It reminds me of the time we spent on the coast of France, as though we had abandoned the world. Now, I'm afraid, it feels as though it is the world that has abandoned me.

Do not despair my love, for I have not been alone for long. Over these trying years, I have found companionship in the form of friends and kindred spirits. There was Algoz, a stout man- having more likeness to the dwarves from our daughter's fairytales than any human from our world. Rough around the edges, but loyal like no other..

He's gone now. Just like I am, from you - my Elizabeth and our beloved Katherine.

If only I had never walked through that blasted door.

I don't recall why I left, only that it was in the dead of night. I remember because of the chill in the air, despite the dreadful heat wave that had been plaguing our countryside. I believe I was upset, or maybe you were- or some combination of the two. Whatever it was, it could not have been of such importance.. damn it all.. of such magnitude was the price of my action, that still I feel the shivers of regret beneath the two suns of this world.

I remember that cold though. It bit into me suddenly, and I turned towards a nearby cottage for shelter. I remember the bitter wet.. was it raining? Did the eyes of the gods water, or was I stained by my own tears? In all honesty, it matters not.. nothing ever mattered after the cottage. I rapped my fist against that door once, then twice. Upon the third, my hand met.. nothing. I fell forward, the momentum of my strike carrying me further than my mind allowed. Further then that of all possibility or reason, for the door did not move- but I did. . Tumbling, spinning- at times screeching, and at others, silence.

I fell, in blackness and nothingness, and in brightness and color- for ages or minutes or months or seconds or, just maybe, no time at all.

I wonder now if I slept during that time. Or if, drunkenly, I slumbered against the side of that cottage- and will wake up soon- haunted by the shades of alcohol, but grateful to end this waking nightmare… No. I cannot allow myself to feel hope. Not anymore. Not again.

I spent time, an innumerable number of days searching for that door- the door that led me from you and one day may lead me back. I traveled through a world not our own, filled with kings and vipers, monsters and demons.. but all of it was for naught.. That is not to say that I did not find the door. I did. It just did not lead me back to you.

Again, and again, and again- I have trekked and clawed and heaved my way through these worlds. In many an instance, I nearly died doing so. Maybe, just maybe, I should have. But each time, as I found myself left with nothing, I would find it. Standing there, alone- beckoning me.. Almost as if to say 'Maybe this time I will lead you home. Come and knock, and I shall answer.".. But never home. Never.

I am so weary now. Dried like the cracked rock that I now perch on- my face weathered from a thousand lives.

Just know, although I have faded- my love for you never will.

I believe I am done now. May you never find this letter.

Yours eternally,
Alexander Marquis

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