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Portrait of Loneliness
by Amanda Berendt

Walking through the empty house
Tears in my eyes
This is how the story ends
This is goodbye

    The silence of the empty room was interrupted by the screech of metal as the sliding  door opened, revealing a tall figure. The noise from the aging steel echoed through the apartment.
    The man was dressed in a long black overcoat with a black fedora covering his closely cropped ash hair. His clothing stood in stark contrast to the paleness of his skin. He stepped through the open door into the long empty room, letting the door grind shut behind him. It had been many years since he had visited the city and even longer since he had been inside this apartment.
    Crossing the room, he searched for signs of its former occupant, but found none readily apparent. He stopped when he reached the long cold fireplace at the center of the outside wall. Running his fingers over the ornately carved dragons on the gothic facade of the mantel, he closed his eyes and remembered that night, years ago. This is where it had all happened - that single moment which had changed everything forever. His stoic expression gave way to something resembling sorrow. Although his exterior still showed the powerful arrogance it always had, there was nothing behind it.
    Outside the large windows, the lights of the city shone in the distance. It would be dawn soon. For one of the few times in his long life, he wasn't sure what he was going to do. He had no plans beyond the here and now. Perhaps he would stay here. Perhaps he would make a new life here in this city that still held the memories.