What do you call that burning feeling when you watch someone rise? What is the word for pride and glory and an intense desire to do anything, for the one you want to succeed the most? Is there a language that translates the feeling of servitude and power? I am searching for the way to say how much my body exudes love and dedication, while also expressing the fire that burns through me whenever you walk into the room. I have met no being or creature that has exacted a price on me such as this, one I turn over as easily as the night falls. There is a word in the Japanese vocabulary, called kintsugi: to be repaired with gold. When something is broken, they melt down gold and repair it as such. This feels like one word that could help. But he invokes komorebi as well: sunshine filtering through the trees. What do these things have in common? I am unsure.

He sits before me now, unaware that I am watching him intensely. Or perhaps he is aware, and enjoys the attention. I know not. I take this moment to try and translate my heart, the fickle thing it used to be. My curiosity and eagerness to observe and understand follows the line of his jaw, the tilt of his head as he cleans his gun. His trained eye scans for anything he might have missed, though I know he has not. The slant of his shoulders, the slight pressure of his forearms while they move, his sleeves rolled up to his elbows while he works. I do not recall him ever being in anything other than dress shirts, and I wonder why that is. He has a cloth draped over his knee, and a knot in my stomach reminds me of how many times I have been that cloth. His foot taps an unknown rhythm, and I wish I could hear the music he follows. But he is my music, so is it any different to sway to his beat, while he moves to his own? A symphony of its own kind.

But it cannot be purely physical attraction, no. My heart says I could go blind and still know him. My eyes land on his shoulders, and the memory of piecing him together in the Void slices my chest. The way he burned with so many questions, so many directions; it would be no surprise to me if the Moirai could never tell him up from down. The trail he blazes is not straight, and I wish to know where he is taking himself, though I will not ask. Not now. Scars and faint reminders of another lifetime drag my attention to the wolves at his feet. I know them. He has told me their names, and they intrigue me. A part of me wishes I could speak to them, ask them about the man that I belong to now, and he I. They knew him long before my heart did. What actions did he take when they were his? 

Is it the focus and stillness that fills him? He does not anger quickly, though his rage is a power even I would not tangle with. That tangible kind of anger makes me tremble with excitement, though it should not. I have watched him from afar, while he works. I can taste his focus, sharp as diamonds. I trust him with any weapon he wields. Danger, as few know, is a weakness of mine. And he is the personification of that. But that can’t be it, either.

Perhaps it is his intrinsic way of being. He can fold into a room, or be the center of attention. There is nowhere he can not blend in, nowhere he can not find what he needs, or who. He is a ghost, and pray he does not reach you before your enemies do. A knife in his boot, pistol tucked in his belt, but the smooth smile of someone who knows what he wants and how to get it. But that doesn’t feel right either.

He is intelligent, sarcastic, and prefers operating on his own or in a handpicked team. He holds himself tall, is not afraid to get dirty. And he walks straight into my dark. He is not a fix, a bobble, a trifle. He swallows the dark and replaces it with his own brand. He chases me deep into the unknown and becomes my spark. And I, who bow for no one, let him. No, I want him to. I need him. When he resurfaced with the summons from Olympus, I thought someone had shaken me from head to toe. This young god, this brazen man, he was fire incarnate. When he entered the room, I thought I had never seen light in my life until that moment. But he was not, is not, the ray of sunshine everyone thinks love should be. He is a dark light, the kind that filters and presses into spaces. He is the aura that presides over an armoury, the one that hums between shots in the night, thicker than blood and flexible as water. He is power and war and knowledge, and by Chaos, if I did not want him. Erebus never stood a chance, even if I had stayed with that shadow. I could not see anyone besides him.

He glances at me while he changes weapons, sword in hand now. He is adaptable; both modern and ancient, able to harness whatever era he wishes. I have walked the plains of Lamark without him, to understand those times. I would know his past and present, and gift him the future if he asked me to. His sword gleams in the white light, preferred over fire or lamp. The look of concentration he gives his weapon reminds me of the way he looks at me sometimes. A pointed look across the table, hidden smile when I blush. He is much of the reason why I have stars in my eyes; he puts them there.

Yugen: a profound, mysterious sense of the beauty of the universe. He is the universe in which I roam.

The sound of metal on wood brings me from my reverie, and he looks properly at me now. I fell in love with the Void that lay in his eyes, and only fell deeper as they transformed into that devastating blue, bolts of black still streaking through them. I wish I could tell him what it means to drown in the dark, but perhaps he already knows. Our dark merged a long time ago. The faintest of smiles ghosts his face, and the rush of life passes through my chest and into my fingers. He leans back, arms resting on either side of his chair, and I feel the urge to kneel before him; to crown him. What magics are these, that he can make me feel this? Does he know what he does? He couldn’t. Not unless I tell him. But what do my eyes tell him that they don’t tell me? Double crossers, they are. The light makes him sharper and softer, edged with contentment and the lapse in concentration opens him up to a more human relaxation. When his body is not tight, I enjoy seeing him soft. He does not show it very often; our first night together was one such rare moment.

Our silences are not uncomfortable. They entwine around one another, like koi in a pond or cats falling asleep. We feel like oak trees, hundreds of years old with roots deep and merging branches. We are the only forest in a mountain range of crashing seas and rumbling avalanches. And no one can hear us when we fall.

We speak with our eyes, his head tilting slightly. I can feel the scratch of his shadow on my cheek, though he sits before me, unmoving. Regal danger? Not quite the words, but close. I chew on them as I look him over, tracing the way his chest rises and falls gently. He is as proficient in espionage as he is in charm, and his aura now spills over me, making me shift. He sits up, leaning forward, arms on his knees as he looks me over once before offering me a hand. His bracelet is still wrapped around his wrist, silver wolf’s head bead glittering. I do not know the words for pride, glory, the intense feeling of burning that he provokes in me. But it matters little when I take his hand. It matters little when I kiss his knuckles and he chuckles, before snaking a hand into my hair and kissing me. Perhaps the word is just love. Perhaps I am trying too hard to define what is already here. So, this is love.

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