The shadows played over him, light and dark. Full moon tonight, nearly as bright as day, lighting the way to his innermost heart. The secret pulsed within him, lurking as always deep beneath the surface. But the moonbeams penetrated, piercing gently to the heart of the most secret chamber within.
What lurks within you, friend? asked the wind, in a whisper of leafrustle and starflicker. What secret does your heart hold so dear?
Nononononono, go away, whispered the secret.
The man felt trouble stirring within him. He wasn't entirely sure what its source was, because he'd hidden it and denied it for so long, but he could feel the trouble rising up to take hold of him by the throat, forcing his head to turn with jerky, reluctant motion, until his gaze left the moon above and fell upon the resting face of his companion. Relaxed now, off his guard, the blond hair spilled untidily across the rolled blanket that served as pillow, he lay there innocent and unstained in the moonlight. But the man felt the trouble rise faster now, felt the grip on his throat tighten and clench with sudden fierce longing, and the nameless fearful secret resurfaced at the bidding of the wind.
He's the problem, whispered the fear. He's always the problem. Because he's here, because I care- because I can feel this burning within me, I can feel the passionate fire of something best left unnamed... and what of it, then? Are you satisfied, is that what you wished to hear? Then leave me alone, and I will go back to my quiet stargazing.
But the wind didn't listen. Instead, it wrapped even closer around him, almost like a tangible living force. It pooled within his very heart of hearts, prodding and poking deeply with chill fingers. One by one it dragged out the memories, the thoughts, the evidence that would damn him in the eyes of god and man.
Is this how it is? the wind asked.
The man hunched away, huddled in upon himself, afraid to take in the blinding glory of what the wind had found. No- no, it can't be! It's not right, it's not natural. I'm a man, he's a man...
But the wind merely chuckled.
Love is good, it said. Love pleases us.
Us, the wind repeated firmly.
Of a sudden, the man began wondering if he were dreaming. On a quiet inner level, he began questioning if he were indeed sane.
Little mortal, you have come here without knowledge. Poor fool, and look what it has brought you- the sight of your inner heart, and a conversation with wind. Will you dismiss those all as pure foolishenss? I think... not.
Suddenly, so suddenly that it couldn't have been avoided even if the man knew how to do so, the voices in the wind grasped him tightly in a whirling maelstrom, a soundless vortex that surrounded him with an eerie glow. Faces peered at him out of the whirlwind, ghostly faces that it seemed he should recognize but he couldn't and there was one face he did recognize- or rather, he recognized the spirit shining thorough the eyes of the one whom he saw wearing many different features. His partner, staring at him time and again, and always with the clear light of love binding the two of them ever closer. The maelstrom slowed, burrowing in to him. He could feel the silver foxfire of the wind made visible as it traced his veins, could feel it when the vibrant energy reached that certain place inside- the one that felt special, the one where as a child he'd imagined his soul resided. Then, once there, the energy made itself at home. He could feel it wash over him, in a comforting wave. Somehow, it became one with his very being, and then it was over. He sat there, in the brilliant light of the moon, wondering what under the sun had just happened.
Beside him, the sleeper stirred and murmured something incoherent. The man looked down on his friend and felt the love that was a part of him overflowing for a moment, then regained control of his emotions and tucked the love safely away in the secret place again. Whatever happened, no matter what, the innocent blond man beside him must never guess the secret of his love.
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