The creation of a memory can be a very delicate thing. It is a process that requires a certain kind of care, a certan whimsy, certain people to be involved in it.

A person who inserts herself into a delicate memory is a sinister villain. A thief of time.

On the weekend she stole three memories from me. Whisked them away like they were eggs of gold, almost like she was a beautiful Parisian miscreant, her presence ethereal in more ways than one. She was.

Every few weeks she appears out of thin air, the wind shifting her hair like a jealous lover, the twinkle in her eyes unwavering, her fingers grasping at my arms. It must all feel so much fun to her. She is a thief of time, and I am a willing victim. A first-class fool.

This thievery has occurred ever since I met her, which was immediately after learning how to form a more permanent memory than just remembering to say "da-da". Not a single time I have complained. Not a single time will I complain.

She appeared first like a dream, the scent of nightmare following her like a shadow. 1893. I was in a small town in the middle of nowhere, and she was in a small town in the middle of nowhere. We were inside the same dream.

Ah, 1893. The year of the Chicago World's Fair. The year of the first driving license issuance. The year of the first time I saw her.

The year it all went to shit.