My love for her is stronger than my hate for him.
When he dies, I will happily never think of him again. Her I will carry with me through eternity.
I wait until early dawn. The king is asleep, not likely to wake for hours. Now I leave him, nod to the guards outside the room, and slip down the corridors and out through the gardens.
My king once spied on his love bathing from the rooftops. I do better- I bathe my love with my own hands.
Her house is separate and hidden. They try and pretend she no longer exists and that what happened never was.
I don’t. I see the way he looks at me too. Like he wants to chew me up, then spit me out. Just like her. But, I am not her.
Her father boasts that he killed a lion, a bear, and a giant with a stone and a sling. I can do better. I have killed chickens, goats, and oxen with my own hands. I’d love to add an ass to that list.
Pompous ass. I hate the way he simpers in front of the king. Pretending he cares and so easily tricking the foolish old man. He cares for no one but himself. He has contempt for every other living thing, especially for those who love him. And there are many such fools. He has his father’s gift for winning friends and rewriting history. Pretty faced liar. I hope his pretty hair hangs his sewer filled soul.
All nasty thoughts fly away as I enter her room.
“Abishag? I’ve been waiting!” Her rich voice sends tingles to the small of my back.
Our ritual is so familiar. We talk and I tell her the news I have from the court. She tells me of the servant’s rumours. I’ve been teaching her to fight. We spar. Then we bathe. I hold the smoking wood on tongs to dry her hair and make it soft. Then I massage oils over her body.
Today she asks if she can oil my body too. Her hands are soft, but strong. She stops when she sees a bruise forming on my hip. She is getting better at defending herself! I am proud.
She bends down and kisses the small bruise. It burns where her lips touched.
The sun is rising. I must go back to the king.
I do so with a smile. I have been with Tamar. She is not forgotten