She gazed transfixed at the crystal musicbox she held in her hand. No music played, and yet she could not take her eyes off of it. Her mind had been hazy recently, her thoughts unclear. But now, she had again been granted the clarity, the wisdom, she had once possessed. Yet still, she was unsure of just what this gift meant. She held the power, but not the reasoning to bring the truth to light. And what good is a pyre of wisdom, without the spark to set it aflame?
She sank deeper into her plush velvet couch. It was the times such as this that she missed him most... Her violet eyes darted involuntarily to the recess in the northern wall. She gave a heavy sigh, and pulled herself to her feet, treading softly to the aged ebony desk and chair, littered with tomes from times forgotten. Tracing a finger through the dust an inch thick, she recalled a time when that seat stayed occupied for days on end. How empty it now seemed...
Turning quickly from the painful thoughts accompanied by that vision, she gazed upon the bookcase which rested against the far wall. Not a space, it seemed, was vacant, each shelf piled high with books and tomes so ancient, it seemed remarkable that they had not turned to dust themselves. Such knowledge contained in those pages... Knowledge, wisdom... She shook her head. Such silly concepts. Ones that she cared little for, and yet which surrounded her nonetheless.
She let her fingers trail along the wall, recalling a simpler time, one which she had nearly forgotten.. but which had been revealed to her once again. How she missed those days... She paused as her fingers reached a slender crevice in the stone wall. And with a gentle tug, the stone was pulled open, revealing a secret chamber beyond. She stood silently at the threshold before entering the darkened room.
Staring up at the ceiling in the darkness above, a cool breeze ruffled her clothing, coming from some unseen source. She closed her eyes, and lifted her hands from her side, the room slowly brightening as hundreds of candles flickered aglow. When her eyes again opened, her violet orbs fell upon the black marble pedestal which stood in the center of the space, and the dark ebony coffin which rested atop it.
She inched closer, at last resting a hand atop the smooth surface. Her fingers gently traced the letters carved into the wood, and had she not been alone, one could have caught a glimpse of a tear trickling slowly down her cheek. She sighed, calling out silently to the soul whose body rested entombed there. She dropped slowly to her knees, resting her head against the dark casket.
"I miss you, brother..." she whispered softly. "I am so lost..." She shut her eyes to hold back the rush of fresh tears. "How I need you here to guide me..." She rested there in silence for what seemed like an eternity. At last, she found the strength to pull herself away from that cold coffin, and opening her palm, gazed down at the key which she held in her hand. Perhaps it was more a curse than a blessing. Perhaps it would be best for her to throw it away, and to forget all of the troubling thoughts that accompanied her knowledge...
She stood then, and turned to the open entrance to her chambers beyond. Yet something prevented her from departing that room, from rushing to the window and tossing that small key to the winds of fate. A voice, merely a whisper, seemed to echo in her mind, "You'll know the truth as your future days unfold." And with those words of wisdom came a clearness of mind, a rationality.
She turned again to the solemn dark coffin, and smiled. And with a whirl of her cloak, she departed the small chamber, entering into the main room of her retreat once again, a lightness in her step which had not existed previously. With a bound, she collapsed onto her elaborate canopy bed, staring up from the plush pillows. She gazed down once more at the key in her hands, and twirled it gently around her finger. And again, she pulled the tiny musicbox from beneath her cloak, and stared transfixed at the image etched in crystal.
And with that, she gave a soft giggle, and lay her head against the pillows once again, returning to her musings and idle fantasies.
Dream Theater fans should notice something about that story... :) I posted it here for all of you FR's who are too lazy to type "board 3, note read 16". I imagine this scene as occuring right before the snapshot that is my room description is taken. Yes, it does have some links to my own current feelings, and it's up to you to figure those out. :) And special thanks to that crazy, bellowing ogre whose wild ramblings partially inspired me to write this on the spur of the moment.