Athena stands on the front lines
Forever battle ready
Armed with words and a shield of silence
She's going to break down the enemy.
Before she attacks she must plan a strategy
Battling thoughts isn't easy
But she must defeat this darkness
Before it consumes her.
She cannot burn sadness, and she can't drown misery
Shooting isolation would never work
Pain doesn't have a heart to stab
Grief no soul to crush.
Fighting an invisible enemy
Athena begins to wither
The demons that dwell in her head
Filling her with thoughts of suicide and death.
In a vain attempt to protect herself
Athena raises her walls
But you can't keep out
Something that's already inside.
Finally the realisation hits
That if this darkness is a part of her
The only way to hurt it
Is to hurt herself.
Athena raises her sword
Slicing it across her arm
And for just a moment the darkness falteres
But it's back the minute the wound heals.
Athena finds sanctuary in the cutting
For even if it can't defeat the enemy
It keeps them at bay
Still she knows it's only a matter of time before she ends this war for good.
Finally the time has come
To put an end to this internal battle
Athena walks along the cliffs edge
Looking down at the icy waters below.
She braces herself
She never hits the water.
She looks up
There's a hand wrapped around her wrist
Pulling her up
Out of the darkness.
The hand lays her on solid ground
Then reaches out for her
She takes it
Feeling the sparks between there fingertips.
She lets her walls collapse
She drops her sword
She discards her armor
She can't fight this alone
She lets her savior guide her
Back towards the light.
Years later she still remembers this battle
Tracing her fingers along the scars that line her wrist and forearm
She calls them her battle wounds
The mark of a true warrior.