This story is inspired by the ancient legend of the nymph Daphne.


The stars in the cloudless night sky were reflected in the dead waters of the lake as Daphne looked at her reflection. Ice-blue eyes met her. Her eyes. Harry had once described them as beautiful, as gates to a strange world. And Daphne felt strange indeed.

Her dark hair blew gently in the wind. Harry had always liked to play with her strands. That, too, Daphne remembered. She remembered so much.

She remembered their shared laughter, their touches, their kisses. Long evenings in the library. Long walks around this very same lake. She remembered the love between them. The love he felt for her. And the love she had felt for him. She remembered it. But she did not feel it anymore.

Daphne sighed. Once again, her mind and heart were fighting each other. Her mind knew that she had once loved Harry. All the memories, they were still there. She knew every detail, knew that she had been truly happy despite all the adversities they had faced. But her heart did not remember. She knew that she had been happy, but she could not remember what it had felt like.

It has been like that for over a year. From one day to the other, something had changed in her. She had looked into Harry's eyes and felt … nothing. For her, it did not even feel like she was missing something. It was just ... nothing.

She had probably been cursed, that is what they had been told. But whoever had cursed her and how, they had never been able to find out. More than enough people would have had a motive. Old acquaintances, friends, enemies. Their love had faced hate, rejection and envy from the very beginning. A relationship between a lion and a serpent, between darkness and light, fire and ice? Too beautiful to live and too cruel to dream ...

Harry still loved her. She heard it in his words, saw it in his eyes, and felt it in his searing pain. Daphne's mind wanted to love him the way she used to, but her heart just could not. Harry perished by that. It was obvious, not just for her. Soon there would be nothing left of him ...

Seeing this despair, grief and helplessness in Harry also hurt Daphne ... somehow. That she still felt sympathy and empathy for him, was that not a sign that perhaps some part of her still cared about her former partner? That a part of her somehow still loved him? But what was love? This idea of love felt so strange to her, even though she knew she had once felt love. Her heart, however, was no longer capable of loving.

Daphne could not do it anymore. She could no longer endure this conflict between her heart and mind. She could not bear to know that she had lost something infinitely precious, but could not feel it. She could not bear to see this pain in Harry's eyes, knowing that he had once been more important to her than her own life. They had come through so much together ...

She would end it. Today. Now.

She felt cold in her chest. Trembling, she raised her hands, the point of a long dagger aimed at her heart. She only had to stab out with the dagger, and everything would be over. All this suffering ...

Daphne hesitated. Did she really want to do that? Just give up?

But she felt weak ... just too weak. Soon there would be nothing left of her, and her numbed heart would be gone with the morning mist.

But would death redeem her?

It was her only chance!

No hesitation. Now!

Daphne took a deep breath and pushed herself into the dagger. Suddenly, the cold spread throughout her whole body.

Her legs failed her. She dropped to her knees. From her chest, right where her heart was, the handle of the dagger loomed. Dark, red blood spilled out of her wound, soaking her clothes in the color of life as death reached for her.

Everything went black. The earth and the sky called for her at the same time. It would all be over soon ...

Suddenly, she felt how arms grabbed her. With great strain Daphne opened her eyes again and looked into the green shimmering eyes that she had once loved so much. She had not wanted Harry to find her like that! He talked to her, but she did not hear him anymore. His tears wet her face. Struggling, she tried to raise her right hand. But even that exceeded her remaining strength.

She opened her mouth.

"I'll wait for you on the other side, my Harry ..."

Daphne did not know if she had actually spoken the words. Everything became dull around her and she felt tired. So tired.

Her eyes closed again. She still felt Harry's desperate grip on her.

Her heart was warm.

If only she could have seen him smiling just once more, Daphne thought, as eternal darkness spread over her.