Black Is the Colour
by Rana Eros
A double drabble written for Tham's colour challenge. Unbetaed.
There are little piles of ash on the hardpacked earth before him, and a faint, black trail of smoke that curls up from the burning photograph in his hand. In the other hand he holds a lighter, painted black and presented as a joke by a dead woman who has—had—the loveliest eyes he has ever seen.
“If you’re going to carry a torch,” she’d said in her soft, sly way, “it really should be a useful one.”
The photograph is nearly gone now, the figure in it nothing more than blackened bits of face and hand. He drops it and watches until it burns out to just another pile of ashes before taking the next one from the box at his side. He stares for a long moment at the face smiling up at him. It stares back, then winks and opens its mouth in a soundless laugh.
He touches the lighter to the bottom lefthand corner, watching as laughter turns to imprecations, then screams, and fire eats up even the memory of happiness.
If his vision blurs at all, it is a shift in the wind that drives the soot and smoke into his eyes. Nothing more.
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