The Lone Firefly

When we wish to change reality, our dreams are painted with a lucid brush. Hazy silhouettes and colors are given definitive shape. In my dreams, I see emerald embers swaying in the dark, bringing light to a pitch black world. Among the flames which descend like snow, is a young girl clad in a bright red kimono reaching up with both arms at the starless sky. She cups her hands around a chosen mote, prying her fingers apart only to peek at the young fire kindling within. The sight illuminates her silver eyes a verdant green. They shimmer with a youthful bliss unbefitting of the hallowed, burial ground she treads upon. Yet I as an observer cannot help but smile with her. Her petite fingers are clasped together in prayer; prayers to erase tawdry desires, prayers for warmth, prayers for peace.

But those prayers go unheard to all but her guardians, the bright fireflies of the graveyard. Before long, those lights—these dreams—dim and fade to nothing. Reality takes root once more, scattering the colors in opposing directions like the violent winds of Fujin.

I will never forget the day I snuffed out the flame of that young maiden, nor will I forget the genuine smiles she shared with royalty and peasant alike. And even if the past is indelible, the future has yet to be written. I know that someday the fireflies she believed in will shine brighter than ever before. But until that time comes, I must act as the firefly that guides the wicked out of the shadow filled crevices.

Upon my life, I swore to make her dream a reality.

I am Hotaru, the light that will guide this world.

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