He took the few steps to approach her door and lightly tapped on it. When there was no response he knocked again.

Raffe turned to leave but realized he was in the right. He was trying to do a nice thing. Swearing to himself he would leave if the door was locked, he tentatively put his hand on the knob and turned. When the door swung open he almost dropped the glasses in amazement.

He saw Destiny sitting on the floor with a stack of books in front of her. On top, a single candle had been lit. The flickering flame gilded her chocolate skin like a loving caress. Her eyes were closed, her hair free, and she swayed slightly with the force of the words she silently repeated. Raffe’s breath caught in his throat as he realized her skin glowed, her cheeks were covered with tears; she barely breathed from the force of the emotion she had turned inward. He must have made some sound of distress or protest, for her eyes flew open and bored into him, the silent accusation smiting directly at his heart.

“I didn’t mean to intrude.”

“Why did you?”

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