She lay there, prostrate in front of the crowd.  In the same dress she’d been married in only hours ago.  He’d rudely thrown her into the dirt in front of them.  In his shame, and her shame.  Only hours ago she’d thought his love was firm, knowing of her past.  Until she’d learned that he’d still not known.
Now it was too late.
In silence she lay there, the crowd gone, still with her fingers in the dirt, her long brown hair thrown forward to hide her tear-stained face.  Hiding her shame.  Hiding her guilt.
And then she slowly crawled to her feet, slowly dragged her exhausted body upwards, her body that had known such forbidden delights, born her master so many sons.   Children of her disgrace and dishonour.
She looked down at her worn body.  She was beautiful, yes, many years behind her true age.  She buried her hands into the folds of her garment in horror and pulled and dragged at the beautiful material.  Her eyes showed not horror, but despair.  This body, what it had done?  And yet, she loved him still.  She could not bear to think of his pain any more than her own.
And she cried tears of pain that nobody heard in her silence.
Then she went to find him again, to die in his presence.


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