She said she had come from another world to release the animals. I said, cool, because I liked all the animals, loved to go down to the zoo, gawked like everyone else, and yet felt a little bit of pity for these wild creatures locked in cages. So I took her down to the zoo and showed her the animals. She was fascinated, but I knew these were not the right animals. I had shown her the wrong kinds of animals. She was waiting for me to see the world, truly, so she made me look into darkness, into mirrors. She put pieces of glass near the window and made me look at them as the sun colored them, but I saw nothing. I took her to see fireworks, and the strangest thing happened when the first burst of light took place—everything stopped. The sparks in the sky stopped, frozen, like the outlines of a glowing umbrella above our heads. I told her—let it go, let everything go, it is alright, the fire is harmless. She let go and the fire in the sky fell, glittering, and disappeared around our shoulders. All I can say is—the fireworks were weird that night—they pulsed and stilled and flared strangely, a strange pattern like a creature breathing, and I turned to the woman next to me, and saw them reflected in the expression of her eyes. I felt as though I was looking into her mind, falling, like those sparks of fire falling from the sky. She wanted me to trust her mind. She wanted me to follow her, and we went back into the caves, deeper and deeper. At some point, she turned off our flashlights, and for awhile, we stood still in the darkness and breathed next to each other. But I couldn’t help it, and I began to cry in terror. Trust me, she said. I told her, I trust you, but I don’t trust the dark. But I knew, I could not escape, because after all, she is the dark.