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Snowmelt

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A young man was standing alone, his breath steaming in the cold air, staring at the snow on the trees. It was beginning to melt, he observed. Little by little, it was disappearing...melting into water that slid down the bare branches above him, then broke free and fell to earth.

//It's nearly over.//

Her time was nearing its end. With the lengthening daylight and the rising temperatures, it was clear that spring was coming. And with that, the death of someone close to him. Someone he was meant to take.

It was ironic, funny really, that the son of Death had spent the last three months teaching this woman what it was like to be alive. And soon it would be over. It wasn't fair.

It just wasn't fair.

He sighed. He was thinking like a human being again. His father had admonished him for that, saying that death wasn't cruel, or kind, it just was. He understood that for some people, people who were suffering, it could be a blessing. Maybe so, but for her, it was a waste.

He dreaded that last day, when he would finally have to reveal himself for what he was. A betrayal of trust, that's what Bert or Alice would call it, if they knew.

Someday they would.

He closed his eyes tightly, shutting out the world and all the signs of life surrounding him. The only thing he could hear was the dripping of the melting snow, falling from the branches onto and around him.

The temperature may have been rising, but his breath still steamed in the cold air, and now he felt cold all over. He wiped away the moisture from his face, that might or might not have been from the melting snow.