River Waltz

He sprawls on the bank, young and handsome. "Waltz with me," I plead, hungering for affection and human companionship.

"Sylvia?" he asks, absent-mindedly stirring the waters with a hollow reed. The name is unfamiliar, but it matters little what he calls me, so long as he calls. This time, I know it will be different.

I encircle his neck and draw him into a whirlpool of rippling bubbles. He dances divinely...powerful movements, charged with energy. Breathless in unbridled passion, he gasps as I hold his body close, but the bliss is fleeting. Soon, there is an absence of warmth and he grows chilly toward me.

I kiss the slightly-parted lips, cold and lifeless against my own. I position his arms about me, but they float indifferently at his sides. He is heartless, cruel and deceitful. I cry bitterly and wonder why they always abandon me thus to loneliness.

I carry him to the underground grotto far beneath the waves where, like all the others, his flesh will quickly become bleached and bloated, weeds will entangle his hair and, eventually, eels will weave in a figure-eight through his empty eye sockets.

A shadow on the surface eclipses the filtering sunlight. A line is lowered with a trinket...a bright and shiny barb.

A gift? For me? I take the bauble and tug gently on the thin wire. I am hopeful. This time will surely be different. He is so young, so handsome.

I sway to the rhythm of the undertow.

"Waltz with me."

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