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We're here, The conglomerate is responding. Hold on for just one moment, we need to get all our facets in place, the castle will tilt and rise, behold; there is the garden. Go under the willow, go where your heart is. You are welcome, you are let in, please be unburdened.

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The night seemed dark but there was always a listless hue about the seasons here, they just didn't turn. There was no spring, no fall, and if there had been a winter it would have had least felt appropriate with all the fires and forges strewn about. Nothing grew here, nothing really died. Everything was conjoined and connected, smoothly rolling about and into another, one hand fit the other, fit the other. All eyes saw together, all flesh felt the same touch. Rows and rows of teeth were ready to sink into you, but held their breath. Beyond the castle, maybe beneath, maybe above, things never seemed to fit quite right; the path to the garden. Sometimes the path was stony, sometimes the pine trees crowded it, sometimes all you could see were the tiny stars of hell guiding you. Yet, there was the garden with its ancient quiet trees, and if you wanted to you could walk right in and never back out again. You could stay here, the mother would let you.

And she let you. You were an angry little child, standing in the garden. It was a guise but it was cunning: cunning was your second nature. We don't mean to take the hide of our abusers, but something will rub off. And stain our souls for good. Mother knew, oh, she knew. She wasn't dressed in her full regalia, that would have been strange, here in the garden. Hers was a simple blue linen dress, a quiet, comforting hue. Her warm chest was moving slowly, breath steadying her surroundings. It was a huge willow above her, looming omnisciently in its grace. Mother's feet were bare, you could not tell were the grass began and she ended. But that's how it is with mothers, they bear the fruit, they are all of life.

Your eyes were dark, dark like obsidian, polished stone set with bitter. Trembling hands betrayed the remorse you'd rather have hidden with a million lies; though the time of lies was over. Nobody lies to the mother. Everyone succumbs to her, to the childhood she is owed. You pay the price or you get nothing. You demanded something, you were owed something. Full of hurt, full of ache. Unfulfilled, your voice almost a whisper, the words stung but the tone was so soothing. Fog was rolling all around everyone and it enveloped warmly. In one unseen moment, you grabbed mother's hand, you held it so tightly it must have hurt her. She stood still, waiting. And there, all the years spilled, flowed over; your tears ringing against the earth, all your hatred lain so plain to see. None heard you, but mother did. Caught in the mist, locked in this bond. Your last demand was the hardest, the one she could not give you. Though the mother is full of life, she's not here to resurrect, to turn back the flow of time, to undo all your mistakes. Somewhere in the distance, someone stirred in a deep grave, dreaming of you; remembering you, touching your eyes, your rough skin, feeling your weight upon her heart. A siren's song lifting from a tomb. Mother cannot bring back the dead, she can only deliever the living. This she said to you. This she gave you.

With us, love is eternal. All sins are forgiven, all burdens are taken. Go where your heart must go, release your shackles. Remember what you are, the layer of scars covering the heart of a wolf; the silent hunter at night, so gentle of touch. Full of life. Full of forgiveness. Full of love. Beyond the pain, wings will grow; you will be all you ever were and should be. Embrace yourself and learn how to swim the murky waters of the past. This, the conglomerate advises. The conglomerate loves with the full force of a thousand entities. We take this very seriously. Our love is eternal. The night will end. The dragon is forever. Good will prevail. Mother sits on her throne.

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