“I know how to solve the riddle now.” He addresses the empty room and the empty window and the darkness waiting beyond the glass. “Which is more precious, the Beloved or that which the Beloved cherishes?” He pauses, letting the riddle hang in the air. “There is no one answer to this riddle, only another question: to whom does the Beloved bow? The answer to that question is the key. That to which the Beloved bows is more precious than even the Beloved himself, as it is for that cherished thing and it alone that the Beloved would give both heart and life.”
But this isn’t the riddle that matters. This isn’t the one which has haunted him from the beginning.
“And do you yet know why the Moon first rose up and murdered his lover the Sun?”
He only laughs and shakes his head. I wonder how many times my heart can break anew at that despairing sound.
“’Love sustained me and love guided me and love abandoned me here,’” he quotes. “’Love killed me and love dragged me and love laid me on the bier.’” He sighs, or perhaps it is the relieved exhalation of final understanding. “’Love is my peace and for love I chose to redeem you at great cost. So you should fear nothing, for I have looked for you both day and night in order to be your haven. I have done well, for I have won you in battle.’”
Maybe he doesn’t care about the answer. Or maybe he doesn’t want to know. I can’t tell anymore.