It Was the Moon

By Southofoz


Hail to thy cold clouded beam

Pale pilgrim of the troubled sky!

Hail, though the mist o’er thee stream

Lend to thy brow thy sullen dye!

How should thy pure and peaceful eye

Untroubled view our scene below,

Or how a tearless beam supply

To light a world of war and woe!


Vincent stood transfixed... the lights from the city... the smell of the grass and flowering trees, the pungent odor of the traffic passing by, all assailed his senses with the power of the air rushing through the Chamber of the Winds.

He felt a hand on his shoulder and looked up. 

“C’mon, we have to get away from the trees to see it,” Devin said, and he ran up the hill, away from the culvert, away from safety; but Vincent, too excited to take heed of his fears, ran after his brother.

And then he saw it, high in the sky, a ball of golden light, hovering like one of Sebastian’s magical trinkets in the black blanket of night, but much larger, with nothing to hold it there. 

Suddenly, there was a sound in his ears and the feel of something rushing by him. He turned just in time to see something grey and shiny speed past, and he turned toward it without thinking. 

Then time slowed, and he saw a face pressed up against the window of a car. Wide green eyes, a heart shaped face and long golden hair. A little girl, no older than he, stared back at him, and for the first time in his life he knew what it was like to be seen by eyes that had never seen him before. 

As he watched, her face crinkled with distress and her wide eyes began to fill with tears. The pain within him was more than he could stand, and his heart broke. 

He ran through the park to the culvert and the safety of the tunnels, determined never to leave their safety again.


*******


In the back seat of the car, the little girl began to cry. Her mother turned in her seat. 

“What is it, honey?”

“Mommy, I saw a boy.”

“Why are you crying? Was he hurt? Did he frighten you?” her mother, asked trying to save her sensitive and caring daughter from the realities of the city streets. 

“No, but he was all alone.” 

Her father, behind the wheel, tried to calm her and keep her from what he thought was the truth. “Its okay, honey,” he said. “His mommy and daddy were probably nearby. No one would leave their little boy alone in the park.” 

“But he had no mommy or daddy!” cried the little girl. “He couldn’t have. He was so... Alone!”

“Oh Cathy, honey,” her father said with a shake of his head. “Everyone has a mommy and daddy.”

Cathy knew that her father was wrong, but she also knew she couldn’t convince him or her mother. The boy she had seen was ...different – so different that there could be no one like him. So she began to cry again, softly this time, so her parents wouldn’t become concerned. As the park faded into the distance, she wondered what it would be like to meet a boy like him. She would like to be his friend and maybe make that sad look in his eyes go away. 


Fair Queen! I will not blame thee now,

As once by Greta’s fairy side

Each little cloud that dimm’d thy brow,

Did then an angel’s beauty hide

And of the shades I then could chide

Still are the thoughts to memory dear

For while a softer strain I tried,

They hid my blush and calm’d my fear.


******


The moon was full the night Vincent found Catherine, and in its light he carried her to his chamber, to a life that would be changed forever. 

From the safety of her balcony, he and Catherine would watch that same moon set over the city.


******


After Devin and Charles made their way out of the culvert, Catherine and Vincent stood in each other’s arms. Catherine looked up at him, love and realisation glowing in her eyes. 

“When you first saw the moon...”

He looked down at her, his eyes full of love. “Yes, Catherine.”

“And you saw that little girl.”

He smiled knowing what was coming. “Yes...”

“She wasn’t crying because of how you looked, you know?”

“I know,” he said, his voice a deep purr.

“But you said...”

“I said I was hurt then. A child’s hurt, full of uncertainties and unsure of the feelings flowing through me. But I am no longer a child.”

“So you know why she was crying?”

“Yes. I know why... You... cried, Catherine.” 

“You know? You knew it was me? I didn’t even remember until I heard you telling that story to Charles.”

“I have known since the first moment I looked into your eyes, Catherine – that little girl, and the woman I had brought to the Tunnels, were one and the same.”

“Then why didn’t you say anything before?” She sounded angry, but there was love and excitement flowing between them.

“Because, as you just said, you had forgotten, and I didn’t want to be the one to remind you. You had to find the truth for yourself.”

“What truth?”

“That it was the moon that brought us together, Catherine. If I had not gone with Devin to see the moon that night, I would never have begun to search the city, and I would never have found you.” 

“It was the moon that brought us together,” Catherine whispered, laying her cheek on his chest.

“Yes, it was the moon.” 

And as two lovers embraced in the tunnels under Central Park, the moon shone over the city above them, full, bright and magical. 


Then did I swear thy ray serene

Was formed to light some lonely dell,

By two fond lovers only seen,

Reflected from the crystal well,

Or sleeping on their mossy cell

Or quivering on the lattice bright

Or glancing on their couch, to tell

How swiftly wanes the summer night



Authors Note; Poem ‘Song to the Moon’ by Sir Walter Scott