In years past I have sat and reminisced upon various adventures and stories from my own life and wondered at the magnitude of oddity they held. Many days I sit and wonder about the places I’ve been or the great adversaries I have encountered, but there is one story that stands out in oddity above the rest. It is the story of how I met Lilith. The original beauty by some counts, the second by others. Eve’s sister in some ways.
But I get ahead of myself.
It was a cold night many years ago. I was walking down an alley after meeting with some friends at a local bar. We had had a great evening of deep philosophical discourse and had at least one too many drinks when the eldest of our group decided it was time to turn in, and we all followed suit.
I had turned down an alley that I didn’t recognize and was hopelessly lost. In my condition I thought I was no worse for wear and started to stumble along and sing to myself to wile the time away as I meandered through the streets. Upon turning down a particular avenue I was stopped by a man in simple clothes and an odd hat. It might have belonged to someone from a century or two ago, the hat struck me so strangely that I stopped and stared at it for a minute before my reverie was interrupted by the wearer.
“Sir, do excuse me, I did not mean to find myself in your way.” His manner and countenance were equally calm and strange. In the pale moonlight I could just make out his face. It was lacking for color and its eyes were a hint of green and gold. The man before me continued, seeing as I was unable to respond, due to being startled or my activities from earlier in the evening, he could not tell.
“My companions and I were just marveling at your city. The architecture is very unique in the world. And the streets are paved less than a country of this caliber would care to admit, I think.” The smirk on his face suggested a secret joke that I might have been the end of.
I was not about to be laughed at so I responded as curtly and as swiftly as I could manage. “The streets are far better than most, and I suggest you remember that.” My condition at that point, I admit, was not capable of intelligent repartee.
“I apologize,” the strange visitor said, “I meant nothing by it. To show my regret, would you join us for a few hours? Our hospitality would be the best offer for my mislaid words.”
I thought for a moment about his offer, and due to the warmth of the evening and my sudden alertness I acquiesced.
“We were on our way to meet with some others of our group down at the edge of town. Is it too far for you?”
“By no means. I have plenty of time to join you this night and be ready tomorrow for what is required of me.” I had indeed nothing to do the next day but sleep and read. Work had a holiday, and all my friends had plans that took them out of town, hence the revelry of this night. Due to my lack of finances and my interest in reading and writing at the time I thought it would be a fine idea to follow these gentlemen to their end and see to what it would lead.
The man I spoke let his smile broaden to almost each ear. The look in his eye was still calm and I found it refreshing to look into it. We walked for a while and enjoyed simple conversation. We talked of the buildings, I attempted to impress with what I knew of the city and where the inspiration for the architecture came from. They seemed pleased with what I knew and offered up some thoughts of their own in response. I must admit that they knew far more than I did and I was quickly lost to their conversation.
After only a few short miles one of the men in our group shouted a cheerful greeting and waved to someone in the distance down the street.
“Shouldn’t we be careful not to wake anyone up? They would call the police and we would have some explaining to do.” I had been through similar situations myself before and did not relish the idea of explaining why I was in this part of town when I lived in quite a different part altogether.
“I don’t think we have much to worry about. Our friends are waiting for us and we will have a short jaunt just outside of town, there you will taste our hospitality and join in our revelry. I promise it will be something to remember!” He seemed quite confident in that I would enjoy myself that night. I let my fears melt away and we continued to walk down the street until we came to the rest of their compatriots and then after a short greeting and introduction of myself we turned and walked off to find a quiet place outside of town to sit and rest.
After we had cleared the edge of the city and were able to see the lights that told us it was alive, even in the evening, far enough away we stopped. There was a fallen tree nearby, broken in two and had one thick branch, the effect was that there was a half circle of three benches available for us to all relax and hold a conversation with each other. A bottle was produced by more than one of the men and was then passed around and we all drank.
It was the most delicious nectar I had ever or will ever taste! I was immediately refreshed to the point that I had a desire to jump and sing to the moon. The rest of the group laughed at my reaction and continued to pass around the bottles until everyone had had their fill. I should say that I refused after everyone else had so as not to drink more than my fair share, though I could have drank every drip until the bottles were completely dry.
“I think its time for a story, Merl, would you start us off?”
Merl was smaller than most, almost a head shorter than myself, but he was broad. He put a bottle away and began a story, which to my great regret I have completely forgotten, except for a bit about a giant, a hunter, a maiden, and a castle by the sea. I was enthralled by his tone and words and didn’t realize how long the story went until he was done and the moon was on her way down, almost touching the edge of the earth.
“Well, I think it’s time we departed. Friend, will you be able to find your way home this night? The moon only has an hour at best before it sets completely and you will have to rely on the stars alone to get you to your bed.”
“I will have more than enough time, and the stars will do just fine to get me to bed, but why do you have to leave so soon? We have had such a great night, and it is still young, why not have another round of drinks, or another story?”
The look that crossed his face was hard to read, though I was now more sober than I had ever been in my entire life, I could not read him completely. “I fear we cannot,” Many of his friends had already gotten up and were walking in the direction of the setting moon. “You may have guessed that we are strangers to your land. We must return to our own before the moon finishes her course or we will be stuck here until it sets like this again.” A thought crossed his face. “You could walk with us for a spell, until you become wearied, or we reach a point where we must go our separate ways.”
I assented to this most heartily and we walked together, on toward the moon, large on the horizon. We came to a small thicket of trees as we walked and our conversation spanned all things I could think of. The men had intellect’s far greater than my own, and they had well informed opinions on almost every subject. Only when I asked about certain current events did they falter. They hadn’t had the time to think them through, they told me.
As we walked through the trees we lost sight of the moon and our walking became difficult. More than once did I run my head into a tree and would have fallen if my new friends had not caught my arm or shoulder.
After the third or fourth tree I heard someone say something up ahead. My new friend turned to me.
“I fear it is time we depart, I hope you can get home safely, it has been a great pleasure spending these few hours with you.” I heard a noise of ruffling clothes and assumed that the man had bowed, though I could see nothing.
“Sir, please, wait. I am rather lost in this wood, it is unknown to me. Could I travel with you until we reach the other side? Then I could walk around this small copse and find my back home with ease.”
There was a silence for a moment before he responded. “My friend I fear we cannot. I will visit you tomorrow, the moon willing, and we may talk more on any subject you like. Tonight I must away, and now, I do beg your forgiveness.”
With that he turned and I heard through the darkness that he must have been running through the thick trees. I marveled at this. I could not walk more than five feet without hitting my head, but this man could nearly sprint through the same blackness.
I turned my feet away from the noise he had made and stumbled, tripped, and at one point crawled out of the thick trees and back into the wide field that spread out for miles away from town. My disappointment brimming through me I turned toward town and was back in bed before the first rays of the sun lit the edge of the horizon.
I did not rise until the sun was full on its course and the day was more than half gone. I went to have a meal and thought about the previous nights adventure. It now seemed like a dream, though I was determined to find out if any of it really happened.
I had a few errands to run in town that day, and I took up a book until the sun began approaching the horizon. I was determined that evening to find the copse of trees I had wandered into the night before and see where they may have gone on the earlier night. I packed up a small backpack and headed out of town. There were few people still around, the holiday taking them to wondrous places far away, or to relatives in another city.
By the time I had reached the edge of town it was already starting to get to the evening of the day and the sun had reached horizon. Before it set completely I was able to see the place where we had sat the night before and shared the glorious drink and riveting story. I stood on the fallen tree and looked in every direction, but I could not find any group of trees on the field that looked remotely like the one I had stumbled out of the night before.
I sat down on the log and thought for a long while. I wondered if it had all been a delusion brought on by the drinks in the bar. Yet I could still remember the taste of the nectar on my lips, and the tones of the story teller still rang in my ears. I was convinced it had not been a dream, but I could prove nothing.
I sat there until the sun had gone beyond sight, and the stars began their appearances. I looked to the far horizon and saw the moon rising, large as life, above the edge of the fields. I hung my head and would have wept had I not been a stronger man. I lamented the loss of such a great evening, and even more the loss of a great friendship. Just as emotion was clouding my mind I heard a voice.
“I see you are back, trying to find an old friend? Or do you enjoy resting alone on dead trees?”
It was my friend from the night before! My head shot up and saw him, not thirty feet from me. I jumped up and ran to him, wrapping my arms around him.
“My man!” he said, “I am pleased to see you as well, but why have you come back out here this evening?”
I could barely answer, but a thought sprang up in my head as I looked at him. “Where did you come from? I have been here for more than an hour and looked in all directions and saw nothing. No person, no trees, nothing but the moon.”
He smiled at me. “I have many things to explain to you friend. First of all the moon. It is in fact where I came from.”
I looked at him incredulous. “The moon? Its thousands of miles away! Please, tell me the truth. Where did you come from?”
His smile dimmed a bit. “You trust you knowledge far too much. The moon is in fact where I came from, and where I went last night. I have been given permission to extend an offer to you. If you agree, then you may join me there.”
I did not know what to say, or what to believe. Either my new friend was mad, or there was more to this world than I had known or could have guessed.
“I see we must talk first. Please, sit down once again where we did last night. I will explain what I can.” We walked over the the fallen tree once more and sat.
“I must tell you about a few things that you know, and a few you do not. You have heard the tale of Adam and Eve? The garden created for them in its perfection?” I nodded. “Then you must know that nothing so perfectly created would ever be destroyed. It is still the image of perfection, protected by the moon, as a gateway to earth, and a shield about it that we cannot cross. Only when the edge of the moon touches the edge of the earth may we travel between the two, the rest of the day and night we must stay on whichever side we find ourselves.”
I listened in awe and disbelief. I had in fact heard of, and studied Eden many times. I was a student of philosophy myself and the stories of creation were not far from our casual conversation. But never had it come up that it could still exist. My silence urged my friend on.
“We come to earth only once or twice in a century to see if mankind has changed for the better or the worse. More often than not they become more selfish, prideful, and in many cases stupid. But there are times when we travel here that we find men like yourself. Eager to learn, in love with life, and a friend to all he would meet. In these rare occasions we take up a vote. If there are enough of us for the idea, we offer an invitation to join. Then and only then do our numbers grow.”
“If you only come to earth once in a century, then there must be only fifty to seventy of you. Or has life spanned a much longer time. Are there hundreds?” I was curious beyond excuse, and could not control my questions.
“There are fewer than that in fact. For every visit we are also allowed to choose to return to earth, in any society we choose and spend the remaining years we have here. For that fact our numbers often dwindle as well as increase. Now I am here, and as I said, am allowed to offer you a chance to join us.”
I wanted to learn more about this place, these men and women that had left the world behind to live in Eden. I was compelled to ask more questions, and they very well spilled out of my mouth like rushing water. My friend laughed, his head thrown back, and raised a hand to stop me.
“I see you must have your curiosity satiated before you can make a decision. Well, I have until the moon begins to touch the horizon, so I will tell you about all I can.”
With that he began to tell me about how he has watched the ages of mankind pass and change. How fashions have come and go, countries, rulers, wars, and peace have all passed before his eyes. He told me of chance to live forever. Every day the group of men and women who still live in Eden eat of the tree of eternal life. And each day they are rejuvenated. I asked him about the other tree, that so caused the expulsion of our original predecessors. He said it was overgrown with ivy and moss and was unable to bear fruit any longer, it had been like that as far back as anyone could remember. Even their matriarch Lilith had said so.
“Lilith?! She dwells there as well?”
“Why yes, she is the caretaker of the garden. She took her post, was born in a way, after the fated pair left ever so long ago. It was she who asked the heavenly father for permission to bring up a companion, and so we have ever done.”
“So the tree of the knowledge of good and evil has died?”
My friend held an expression on his face that was contemplative and deep. “I think it is still alive, but it can no longer bear fruit. It was reserved for one purpose, and that was to test Adam and Eve. Since the day they left, it has ceased bearing fruit. All the fruit it had at the time was harvested by the angels there and sent to burn in the damned lakes.”
I sat and thought for a while on this. I looked up and saw the moon had more than half finished her course. While still looking at the glorious orb, now beginning her wan, I asked. “If I were to come with you, what would happen?”
“You would have to die.”
My eyes shot to his in an instant. “Die? You would kill me?” For the first time I noticed how pale his skin really was. It wasn’t simply pale, it was almost white, and gray tinted the edges.
“No my friend, you would have to choose your own death. I do not mean suicide as such. If one were to eat of the fruit of eternal life here, on earth, then his body would begin its decay and the soul would take full control. You would die, but not in a way your world knows.”
I stared into his eyes for more than a minute before I could respond. “This is not an easy decision. There are many things to think about.”
“Of course, but remember, if at any point you would return here, then you would be allowed to. However, first you must eat the fruit here. If tomorrow you would return to you home in town, then you would merely have to not take part in our daily breakfast. The eternal life would leave you once you stepped back onto this soil, and you would, within a day, return to your old self.”
This set my mind at ease. I agreed to spend a day in Eden to see if it was what I longed for, to see if it was truly what he spoke of. I was wary all the same as he pulled from his pocket a small fruit and offered it to me. I looked at it cautiously and took a small bite. It reminded me of the nectar from the night before. Its taste beguiled all my senses and I felt more alive than I had ever felt before.
When I had finished to the core I was about to toss it out into the field when my friend grabbed my arm.
“The seeds of this fruit can never be planted in this world. We have been warned that a fate worse than Adams, and a toil worse than Eve’s would befall us if it were to ever find root here.” The look in his face brought to the edge of terror. His eyes were stone cold. They chilled my terror enough to keep me from moving or saying anything. He plucked the core from my hand and replaced it in his pocket. I sat stunned for only a moment when I felt a pain begin in my stomach and race through my veins to burn my muscles and joints.
“Poison! You have poisoned me!”
“You have chosen this yourself. The pain will pass soon. I fear though that the moon will reach her rest before you are able to reach it, so I once again apologize for anything that may seem untoward, but we are now in haste!”
With that he picked me up like I was a child’s doll and raced for the moon. She was just beginning to touch the horizon and I was able to once again see a small copse of trees that grew in front of her as I was carried away.
When we reached the wood my eyes had stopped burning, and most of my muscles too. I was now able to see quite clearly in the darkness all around. Ahead of us was the brilliance of the moon. It was changed however, there was a door on the horizon that was opened with a man beckoning to us. I could see the edge of the moon meet the edge of the door. As the moon continued to slowly set the edge of the door disappeared.
I was also aware that we were far closer than I had thought. The moon shone as if she were on the earth herself come to a gala event. My purveyor lunged toward the doorway and we fell on the other side rolling to a stop.
“So he waited to the last second did he.” I could not see the man still standing by where the door was. It was now only a few inches high and shrinking. With it I watched as my world disappeared.
When the pain stopped I looked around and beheld the most beautiful garden I had ever seen. The plants were perfect. Every vine and tree growing together. Flowers blooming by the hundreds. The bushes looked vibrant and a light wind was causing everything to stir peacefully. The grass under me was soft and I felt like I could lay there forever.
“Come you’ve much to see before you decide whether you will stay with us.” My friend stood over me smiling. He could see that the transformation had finished and I was now one of garden. I stood up and looked at my skin. It was much the same, except for the color. My hands were a light gray with a white pallor. My senses weren’t the same either, they were sharper. I could hear the leaves in the trees swaying with the wind, I could smell all the flowers as sharp is if my nose were right next to them. The place was covered in a dim sunlight. The kind right before sunset, or right after dawn.
“Come, let me show you the garden.” We walked past the trees and the flowers to a grove filled with all varieties of fruit trees. It was the most diverse and bountiful orchard I had ever seen. Every fruit looked like it was ready to fall off its branch. I reached up and plucked an apple and bit into it. I felt no need for food, but the allure of the fruit was overwhelming. The taste was more than I could have imagined. The juice spilled down my chin as I bit into it. As I wiped my chin clean with my sleeve I felt the cold touch of my skin. I had changed. I felt it, and being this different, in a place that was so perfect sent waves of mixed emotions through me. I knew I didn’t want to stay this cold dead thing, even with the heightened senses. I also knew that I never wanted to leave the garden. I knew that within a day I would have to choose whether I would give up the life I had for this one that was now offered to me.
As we wandered deeper into the garden I saw some of the most beautiful plants and animals, living peacefully together. A lion laid with a lamb, a tiger licked a small furry animal clean, I had never seen the type before and I thought then, as I do now, that it must be extinct on earth. Everything was in harmony. Everything was living and growing together.
My friend stopped me as we made our way to a grove, a clearing in the middle of the garden. Before me were two trees. One was taller than any other in the garden. Its leaves were touched and edged with gold and silver. It shown bright in the sun and sparkled like the ocean at sunset. The fruit on its boughs were small, the same kind that I bit into only an hour or so earlier.
The other tree was covered in vines. From its base to the top of its highest branches vines covered it. It was thinner, sickly looking to the untrained eye. It seemed to have withered compared to its neighbor. There were no fruits on its boughs. There were few places that the bark could be seen, and where it was visible it was dark, almost black. Leaves covered the ground below it, dry and crisped as they would be back home during the fall.
“These are the two trees. We help tend to all the others in the garden, but these two are reserved for Lilith to tend. She is the only one who may approach them. It is she who brings us the fruit so we may live another day in this paradise. We are never allowed to go near them. If we do, we are sent back to earth, never allowed to come back.” He stood solemn and reverent. His eyes were still, his face lacking of any emotion. I looked back at them and wanted to ask a question, but when I turned I saw my friend already walking away.
“Where is Lilith?” I was curious to see the legend of subtle beauty that he said lived in this place.
“She is somewhere else in the garden.” He would say no more of her whereabouts. I asked two more times with the same response. We walked in silence for a while and I was able to ponder all that I saw.
We came to where the rest of the people were gathered and joined them in singing, and dancing. There were places to sit, fruits to eat, and a stream gurgled past serenely. I reflected on my short visit so far, and at that point I knew I could stay there forever. I asked once more about Lilith, what she does with most of her time, and why she did not join us. Those near my gave short replies and one told me not to ask again. This worried me greatly.
I discovered that it had been evening when I arrived. After much singing and dancing the light had diminished, and many went off by themselves, or in pairs to sleep. An attractive young woman came to me and led me away. I was drunk on the joy of the place and did not resist in the least. We went to a glen that must have been hers. There was a bed set aside made of old leaves, soft grasses, and various vines that looked far more inviting than any bed I had laid on before. The glen was about the size of a small room. It was neat, green, and the ceiling was made of branches that bore a few different fruits. She reached up and pulled one down for me to eat. It tasted like honey and the juice ran down my throat with ease. When I opened my eyes again she had moved to the bed and beckoned me to join her. The rest of the night I will let pass without comment.
The next morning I woke to find my hostess gone. I got up and wandered out to find where everyone was. My friend was waiting for me.
“Good morning. Today you may decide if you will stay or go. There is no rush to get back, and I will show you now where you can view your home from here.” He guided me through the garden to where we had first entered. The edge of the garden was a shimmering wall of glass or some other barrier. I put my hand to it and it rippled under my touch, but no matter how hard I leaned against it, it would not give.
“There is earth. If you focus you can see anything you wish to see. Time passes much the same here, so it will be morning in your town.”
I looked and saw a large globe away in the distance. As I focused I could make out the different continents. I kept my gaze fixed and the continents grew until I could make out countries, then cities. I know a bit of geography and was able to find my home town. As I stared at it it grew and grew until I could pick out my own street. I saw my window before me as if I was standing right outside it.
“I can see my bedroom. My closet, my bedsheets as I left them yesterday morning.”
“Yes, you are able to see anything you wish. You may spend as much time here as you wish as well. But remember, each morning we must go and meet by the grove in the center of the garden so we may be given the fruit that sustains us.” Thus saying he turned and led me back into the center of the garden. The rest of the people from the night before, and more, were gathered. They talked amongst themselves quietly, some giggled, others, when they saw me stared and commented to their nearby friends. I admit that the attention was more than I was used to and if I had been there alive, a rosy hue would have graced my cheeks. As it was, i felt no heat rise on my face. The lack of that sensation alone stopped my embarrassment.
We waited for a minute or two before there was a hush that spread through the entire group. I craned my neck to see if Lilith were now going to appear. Try as I could, I could not see above or beyond the small crowd gathered for their morning repast.
One by one they each left the group and went back to some place or other in the garden. As the crowd thinned I started to feel anxious excitement welling up inside me. I would see her now, meet her, and be given the fruit, the greatest boon of this paradise.
The crowd thinned, more and more people left, until there were only a few left. My friend walked up past me to receive his sustenance and I was left to watch as the last few took their meal and left. Then there was only me. Before me was Lilith.
Her long dark hair and naked body stunned me so that I barely could remember to walk forward. Her eyes pierced, yet were soft and loving at the same time. Her skin was pale, not like mine or the others, but pale with a different life. She stood just taller than myself, and every aspect of her was beauty. Dark hair and eyes, pale skin, and all as perfect as the place she called home.
She raised a hand to me, one of the fruit held gently. I looked at it and wondered what to do. I looked at her with the pain of this choice in my eyes. I knew she must have seen it before because she merely smiled. She reached out and took my hand, placed the fruit in it and before she turned and walked away she whispered in my ear.
What she whispered was for me. She knew me, my heart, my fears, and she knew exactly what to say. At that point I realized what my choice was going to be. I looked at the fruit.
When I found my friend he was standing back where we had first entered the garden. He was looking at something on earth.
“Hello,” I was cheerful, calm, I knew what I had done now, and I was at peace.
“Hello friend,” He didn’t turn to look at me. “So have you made your choice then? I do hope you will like it here. It is a peaceful place, everything you could want you may have. There is no violence, nothing like what you left on earth. No more need for food or shelter. Nothing to worry about at all. The companions here are also the best friends and lovers you could ever want. No fear, no malice. Everything as it should be. We have built a life here for ourselves.”
“What are you looking at?” I asked him calmly.
“My home town, much changed over the decades, but much is the same as well. My family still lives there. Their descendants live in any case. Much has changed since I left it.” There was a strange tone to his voice. He missed something, but he wouldn’t say what it was.
“I have made my choice, and yes this place is far better than I had ever imagined. The fruit is full and the flavor makes the ones back home seem like they had rotted on the stem. The water is clearer and more refreshing, I can play and wrestle with the animals. This place is filled with the perfect kind of love. The kind of love that on earth I could only dream of but never remember what it was upon waking. And Lilith…”
He turned to look at me. “What about Lilith? She is beauty in womans form, is she not?”
I smiled, “Yes, as perfect as this place.”
He smiled and turned back to his former position of watching the world.
“She told me something.”
He turned once again to me, surprise on his face. “She spoke to you? Your first day here, many will be amazed.”
“Yes, she spoke to me, whispered something to me. It made me think. This place is a wonder to behold, and a paradise worth everything back home. I know now that if I had all the luck in the world I could not have stumbled onto this place. I could have all the blessings from all the saints who ever lived, and it would not have helped me run into you.”
He looked at me, he knew what I was going to say next.
“Who chose me? Was it her? Or was it you?” I looked at him, watched him as he answered my question.
“I asked her if I could choose someone this time around. She saw who I had chosen and said I could extend the offer. So a bunch of us got together, took some nectar, and went down to find you, bring you here.”
“Why did you want me to join you here? Has anyone else ever been given the chance to choose?”
He looked at me now with pain in his eyes. “I was chosen the same way you have been chosen. We are the only two who were not picked by Lilith herself. The woman who chose me was beautiful, wise, intelligent, and loving. When she brought me here I fell in love with this place, her, the people, the food, everything you now praise. But after a while she decided she wanted to go back and finished her days on earth. I watched her, unable to leave this place. She was the first person I saw leave. I have been here for six hundred years. She left after two hundred. I was too scared to go back with her. So I asked if I may choose a companion who would understand me and how my life here was slightly different from the others. She allowed me to choose. So I watched, and waited, and searched. I found her descendants, and then found you. With no family in the city you lived in, and no wife, I figured you would be the best companion.”
I stood and watched his face as he told his sad tale. I felt bad for him. Unable to go back to the life he had left. He had brought some of the world with him, just as I had. That is what she had told me. That I was here to take him back with me. He no longer was able to live here, and I was allowed to come in order to know what he had to leave.
I walked over to him and put my hand on his shoulder. “My friend, it is time to go back. Tonight I will join you, we will go back to my home. I will show you what you need to survive, remind you about all the things you have forgotten. Tonight we will return for good.”
He looked at me, with fear and sorrow. I knew this would be the hardest thing he had ever done. To leave such a perfect paradise. To back to the world that the rest had seemingly left behind without a thought or care. The two of us remembered too much though. There was too much of the original fruit still in us for us to stay. Lilith knew this, that is why she let me come. That is why I put the fruit on the ground after she whispered in my ear.
After we returned, I helped my new friend adjust to life once again. The first night we looked and felt as if we were still part of the group in Eden. The next morning, after bizarre dreams, we awoke to find the color returned to our faces. A pulse was back in my body. I knew then what I had lost when I spent the night in Eden. I had left much of my malice behind me here. I had left much of my knowledge of good and evil here, but not all. For that reason my friend and I were back. I helped him learn about all the aspects of society he had not been able to see from his perch in the garden. After months, then a year passed, he was starting to feel better about living back on earth. Within two years he had moved out, and within months of leaving my house I lost touch with him. Once in a while I have received a letter signed only ‘Your Eternal Friend,’ and I know he is well.
I will always remember those two days. I will always remember the choice that had once been offered me. The chance to stay had been given to me by Lilith, but I chose to help my friend. I will regret that, always… and never.