For you, My Onetime Love By Kirixchi

I watch you sleeping, your chest moving slowly up and down, your face, so boyishly beautiful, innocent in repose. I remember watching you in days past...long, lemon-scented nights when you would call me to your arms and I would find pleasure in your arm. Sweat-slicked sheets sticking to our skin as you whispered words like "forever", "ours", and "love".

I saw your evils, the boyish, pouting rage that shadowed your love of your subjects. I knew of your intrigues, and the black-clad men that murdered and ravished on your command. But I also saw your heart. That precious instrument. Strong and empty, yearning for acceptance...

You knew me as well. Seeing past the strange appearance, the red hair that would not be smoothed, the mysterious flashing eyes, the totems of my gods that I refused to shed- a British Witch, proud and untamed, but you would not break me. You loved my spirit and my mystery.

We were hated and hunted together.

The Goddess could only lead me to you. I heard her whisper your name when I was only a girl, never knowing that she would lead me here to Rome. To a slave market, to a dismal cave within your palace, to your bed...

You needed love, and I gave it to you. My body, my soul, my dark magic to use against your foes.... And, even knowing that I could never be your wife, I thought that you wished it could be so...that you thought only of me, and that on the far side of death we could live as one.

But you speak, dearest, in murmurs when you sleep. You tell me in expressions when you are silent, in looks and glaces at dinner and in the halls that your heart is no longer mine. I am a home for your passion, but not your love. Your desperate, clawing desire is no more for me, but for another.

I waited. Hoping that things would change, that what I had seen was false -A trick of light or a fever of the mind, but my wishes were unfulfilled.

The goddess, when she whispers now, says murder...

And so, I will do what you ask of me. I offer final favor from your dark angel- An arrow to be used against your enemies.

On the silken pillow beside your head, I leave the parcel that you requested, a dagger- small and deadly, soaked in a potent brew of my own devices.

The delivery made, I turn to go.

Sleep well, dear Commodus...

The bringer of death rests beside you as you dream.

For Lucilla, who stole your heart, my poison is strong. Her hero will surely fall.

And for you, my one-time love, the poison is very slow.