by Aerin Rose
Shadows of the fire wards shimmered gold and crimson in the flames of Lillith’s hair. Firebird, salamander, dragon - we’d bonded during the infinite expanses of time I’d spent tangled in bed with Lillith. Now they peered out, one by one, in silent goodbyes. I avoided looking at her as I worked my earthen features into the shapes Yahweh suggested.
"I guess it could have been Undine.” Lillith’s voice was lukewarm.
“The water elemental as mother of humanity?”
“I guess not. Nor Sylph, either.”
“We’ve been through this, Lil. I’m going. Help me with my torso.”
She slid her hands beneath my arms and lifted. Although I’d melted into her heat countless times, that lava skin now felt acidic against mine. As my waist lengthened, ribs grew to support my new frame.
“You shouldn’t have to change for this animal.”
“Adam. His name is Adam. What do you want me to do? Who should go instead?”
The words kindled between us; we both knew Yahweh had asked for the fire elemental. For her. She was the first to turn away.
“I’ve already received the blessings of air and water,” I said. “Now the fire blessing.”
The incandescent salamander appeared in a burst of sparks on my hand. His bright tail gripped as he bit my finger, flint to touchstone, fire scorching my blood.
“I will always love you.” I raised my eyes to hers a final time. “But I can’t forgive you.”
My lover whispered, “Eve,” and I was gone.
(Aerin Rose: With thanks to Fritz.)