Hello, Láquesis from Las Moiras writing in: This piece has no warnings if you've read the other three published by this account. It is a narration of Láquesis as the Fate who decides the length of someone's life. Enjoy, and thank you for your time. — L.

Red thread embraced my fingers, carefully wrapped around them so it wouldn’t knot or tangle along the way.

The spinning of a wheel was heard behind me, and the sharp and curt cut of scissors echoed right in front of me. My sisters and I moved in perfect synchrony, as if connected to one another by an invisible thread that drove our limbs towards completing our task at hand.

Life.

Life and Death.

It’s an odd perspective others have on us, if I begin to think about it while my hands go through the motions of collecting, stretching and measuring, I become aware of how it would seem so quickly for the creatures we make come alive.

We never stop our motions, it’s always spinning, stretching, measuring, and snapping.

Over and over.

Over and over.

Our bodies are used to the motions and are skilful in the artistry of the living and the dying. Our minds are used to the concepts humans have created over the years, familiarising ourselves with their ways and manners to dictate how their stories will start, intertwine and inevitably, end. It’s entertaining, an ever-changing creature, never satiating its thirst and want and even need for more and more. The human is a curious creature that knows no boundaries when it comes to discovery and adventure. Even when they don’t think they are, all of them are part of a bigger tapestry of endless interwoven stories, even the smallest of threts, even the simplest of them.

All somehow knit together.

Like a pair not so long ago.

Aphrodite was over the moon when they heard about them, about the lovers on earth that looked at each other with a sliver of the intensity she and Ares once shared. I heard from some of the Olympians daughters that she even shed a silver tear or two, remembering days long gone between the embrace of a lover she was forbidden from ever even thinking of again.

Aphrodite whispered miracles to the pair, she gave them lights of hope in times of darkness, and offered them a future at the cost of all the things they had fought to once maintain. She knew well the pain they endured, and so she dusted over them a blessing for the future, fruit of their love, finally blooming.

When the lovers came to my hands, years later, they were so intertwined together, it was difficult for us to decide how they should pass. It was a new thread entirely, twisted and embracing and sturdy as anything. It was nothing my sister couldn’t cut, and it was not the first time we had an occurrence like this.

Endless threads pass by our hands with all sorts of varieties of knots, twists and interlocking, an unimaginable kaleidoscope of new and old and plentiful and scarce.

There were plenty of those threads that were cut short, just a palm or two of mine, and they were done, gone into the afterlife with only a small aftertaste on their mouths of what Life could truly ever be.

When this happened, their destinies were usually sealed by the hand of a third party, assassins, barbarians, animals, brutes.

Or scared children, weak yet strong, that know not how to operate outside the sturdy walls they were raised in. When people are scared, they run, hide or fight.

When children are scared, they obey.

And a child obeyed very well, thoroughly, throughout his entire life. A child that came to us, calloused edges and tangled beginnings, being the cause of immeasurable death. His thread has not yet been cut, but his hands have cut plenty.

Clóto and Átropo know how it will end, I know, too, the destiny of the crooked child who wanted to survive and knew nothing else.

I heard from the moon that Ares pays a visit to that small corner of the world every other few years, protecting a child born for war and destruction, giving him strength and wisdom in battle, and resilience and repentance when night falls. Ares gives him and other children in a similar situation, unbeknownst to most gods from upper ranks, the strength they need to survive, as they are fighters fighting a war against the cruellest of opponents.

Those who should’ve given them safety and tranquillity, who should’ve protected them from the very first day.

There are children, however, that wither away much too quickly. I give them very few time, not out of cruelty but out of duty, as the story of Life and Death must go on.

I don’t feel for them the way they feel for each other, for I can’t.

But stories live on, interwoven in the tapestry of Life and Death, never allowing it to be cut short.

These children wither away, like petals from a tree, overnight and without any struggle, without any help from Ares or any hope sprinkled over them from Aphrodite. Without the promise of spring thanks to Persephone and the wisdom of age thanks to Athena.

They leave soon, because they have to, because the tapestry of Life and Death must go on, because if we stopped to mourn every soul cut, we would never make things go the way they do now.

So they leave, short-lived and long loved, with very few people to truly remember them and appreciate them the way they would’ve done with an adult. A child left, for example, very soon, very fast, overnight.

She withered away like the petals of a cherry blossom, not even being allowed to shine through at all.

Her brother’s thread has not yet been cut, and his end has not yet been discussed, but he revisits the dead more than the living, and Hestia offers the child solace in the form of sunlight and warm breeze. She knows the loss of a child is not one anyone could ever imagine the pain of, not unless you’ve felt it yourself.

So she wraps her blessings over the boy in front of a tomb nobody visits any more. She covers him from the shade of a father that never showed up again, and a mother that was always late.

Meanwhile, my sisters and I knit together another thread of the book of Life and Death.

And we will keep doing so for forever, until thread that never runs out disappears, or until our hands that never know exhaustion give in to tiredness, until our hands and arms give up from teaching Ariadne all of what she knows about spinning, twisting, stretching, and cutting.

We will keep on creating, twisting, measuring and cutting.

Over and over.

Over and over.