Sleepless Night

By Minmei

He waited in isolation, just wondering what could have been. So many lonely nights he would imagine her coming to him. He would picture her seductive gaze, or just her rousing touch, the way she’d tenderly lay a hand on him, beginning a slow, sensual game. She would explore his body with only the soft, smooth tips of her fingers, giving that luscious smile meant for him, and him only. Their eyes would meet, then their lips, and with that wicked smile, she would move her arms away, so as to give him a chance to explore her.

He would start from the top, removing the light blue cloth from her brow. Tossing the bandanna aside, he would run his robust hands through her long, delicate curls, kissing her passionately. Then he would pull away, letting his hands graze her shoulders and travel down her arms until their hands clasped together once more. They would gaze at one another yet again, then his hands would travel to the top of her blouse. Losing each other in yet another steamy kiss, he would begin to unfasten the buttons of her shirt, and…

Remind himself it was just a dream, and only that.

The man sighed. He played and replayed the ardent scene in his mind countless times, and all he could do was imagine whatever could have been. Why wasn’t he brave enough to overcome the petty and ignorant beliefs of society? This was a great chance at love…


He shook his head. It could never have been anyway, he thought to himself. We both knew that.


He turned and found the man dressed in blue heading in his direction. “What is it, Flik?” he asked.

“Most of our soldiers have escaped Muse,” Flik began.

“And Kenny?”

“I’ve just received word from Leona that he, Nanami, and Pilika have just fled the city. They should be safe. And, um…I don’t know how to put this, but…”


“Uh, Viktor,” Flik said uncomfortably. “I think I’ll tell you after we land in Kuskus.”

Viktor nodded, partially intrigued, partially anxious at his friend’s announcement.


The two men and their small army reached the tiny port of Kuskus without any trouble from Highland, much to their relief. As the soldiers left into the town, Viktor found Flik and the two headed for the inn.

“Yes, your rooms should be ready,” the innkeeper was saying. “Just go on ahead.”

“Thank you,” Flik responded, then pulled Viktor inside the room.

“Hey, what is it, pal?” Viktor asked as Flik closed the door.

Flik slowly turned around to his friend. “I, uh…I think that maybe you should sit down for this.”

With an apprehensive look, Viktor hesitantly obeyed. He took a seat at the edge of the bed.

“Um, Viktor,” Flik began, clearing his throat. “I was informed by one of the troops that, um, an incident involving Lady Annabelle took place just as we left.”

Viktor’s eyes remained on Flik. “And…?”

Flik bowed his head. “I’m sorry, Viktor,” he spoke quietly. “The soldier said that, just hours ago, Lady Annabelle was murdered in her private quarters.”

The words seemed to bounce around the room, for Viktor was not receiving them. “Wh-what?”

Flik sighed. “I’m sorry.”

Viktor blankly stared at the floor for a moment, then stood suddenly and started for the door. “I think I’ll go outside for some fresh air.”

Flik turned around. “Viktor.”

The bear-like man stopped in his tracks.

“You know, if you ever need anyone to talk to, I’m here. I know better than anybody what you’re-”

“I know,” Viktor replied without facing his friend. “And thanks.” With that, he vanished from the room.

Flik shook his head in sympathy. “Poor guy. Hope he’ll be all right…”


Viktor found himself wandering the streets of Kuskus, not heading toward anywhere in particular. Eventually, he came upon a lone dock at the edge of the city, and brought his face to the starry, moonlit night.

The now lonely, sleepless night…

…a tragic reminder of the amorous night that could never happen now.

It wasn’t going to work out anyway, he reminded himself. You both agreed you could never be together. You and she…it wasn’t meant to be. It wasn’t-

The astral beings of the inky skies shone upon him, seemingly staring him down. He lowered his face as if to avoid their accusing glare, then with a sigh bearing no expression, he balled his hands into fists and tightly shut his eyes, dreading the cruel moment the grievous news would hit his heart at last.

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