I grew up in a forest where the trees bleed crimson instead of sugar. When it rains there the grass dries up, and when the sun shines birds drown in their nests. Nothing is ever as it should be and rarely is anything what it seems. That’s why I refused to believe him at first, why I found it so hard to trust his gentle hands and quiet words. It’s why the first day I saw him, I tried to kill him.
It was just like a thousand other days I’d known in the wood, a day of torrential sunshine that left me gasping for air. I’d left my hair down that morning, too lazy to bind it up in the braids I wore on most days. The sun plastered it to the sides of my face and it stuck patched clothing tight to my skin. As miserable as I was, he stood on the rock ledge by the river, dry as could be and smiling at the sun like a fool.