I really did love him. Once. I still do, somewhere in my soul. Yet, I couldn't stay with him. Not after what I'd done. How he felt... I deserved that. I wish he had loved me as I loved - love - him. I couldn't expect that, though. He did more than could be expected of him.
We had met in the Month of the Lotus, and the courtship was brief. We had both loved each other then, and by the Month of the Orchid, we were engaged. Our marriage would be the happiest event for us both, and so we planned the wedding for the first day of the Good Month.
My cousin helped me put my affairs in order before I left my family to join a new one. I didn’t need the help as I had little to do, but having a companion with me as I worked was comforting. He had always been so good to me. He had always been so kind. At the end of the Month of Chrysanthemums, we had completed the work, and he was leaving to let me prepare for the wedding. As I always had, I walked him down the winding path until it met the road. Alone in the darkness, we said the customary farewells, but rather than leave, he took my hand and pulled me close. As we kissed, I forgot my fiancé. I forgot everything. There was only us.
We didn’t speak after that. We had erred, and we couldn’t risk doing so again. He left to the mountains, and I to my new husband. I knew I was pregnant in the days following our wedding. I fear my mother knew before we were married. She always knew when someone was with child. My husband, though, didn’t know until my sicknesses woke him every day. I could see in his eyes he knew something was wrong. Every morning I was violently ill, and every morning I wished to retch so badly that I would miscarry. I wished that I could be free of the burden growing in me. I wished for my husband to see my guilt and beat me. I wished for some punishment to absolve me. None came.
At the dawn of the Month of the Lotus, the anniversary of meeting my husband, the baby was born. She was beautiful, but at the same time hideous. I felt a deep loathing for this despicable leech I held in my arms. As my husband grew more distant, it was my only companion. It screamed at me to care for it, and offered no thanks. I couldn’t bear it. So, I put a stop to it. As it was feeding, I drew it close. Its gentle suckling turned to struggling as it tried to push away and find air. I smiled as it grew limp. Something in my mind told me this would make everything better.
Nothing changed. We told everyone that our premature daughter died suddenly in the night. We feigned mourning. All the while, I tried to win back my husband’s heart as he turned inward to find God. I realized my task was futile, and couldn’t bear it. One night, we had fought longer than usual. Neither of us slept. The fight made up my mind for me. I couldn’t live with what I’d done.
That night, we performed. My husband was tired, and he threw his knives badly. As he threw at my neck, I saw my chance. The first blade splintered the wood inches to my right. The second was to fly to my left. I saw his hand rise, and I heard his yell. I twitched slightly, and that was all it took.
As the life oozed from my neck and the crowd gasped, I smiled. Death had come take me. Any hell would be better than the one I made for myself. I went willingly to a damnation in my heaven.