She fell asleep beneath the fig trees, waiting for her destiny to arrive. As the sunrise peaked over the mountains she reluctantly awoke. Where was he?! He should have arrived by now, surely. The journey from Greece should have been a steady one. The rivers were calm this time of year. Hanging her head in disappointment and shame, she roused herself, and started to walk towards her cottage. As she neared the gates of her home she suddenly encountered a very familiar pair of eyes, as she walked past the marketplace. A weary, but beautiful stranger met her gaze as she walked past, and he stopped dead in his tracks the moment he saw her. So did she. Part of her wished to turn and run in the other direction. The other part, the one which lie deep within her soul, wished to cry out, and run to him, meeting him with an embrace to rival all others. But as it stood, all she could do was remain in place, frozen as a statue of Venus, staring back at her lover. He could but do the same. They remained in this position for some minutes, before he finally made a move towards her, clutching on to the strap of his satchel for dear life, his heart racing, and his palms sweating with anticipation. She was even more beautiful in the light! She started to walk away, but he reached her before she could leave, holding her forearm in a gentle, but purposeful manner. “Ziana?” He half-announced, half-asked, not certain if the name she gave him in her sleeping state was accurate. She turned towards him, smiling. “Anastasios?” He smiled in return, nodding, stunned to find that their dream and waking lives had finally merged into one.
He smiled widely, like a child who has just discovered the formula for making ice cream. Without uttering another syllable, he shared his joy at seeing her in the flesh, standing before him, and asked her to walk with him, away from the village. She smiled in return, killing the chill that lay within his breast. She nodded slightly, and began to walk beside him, glancing up shyly, studying his face as he spoke.
He appeared to be almost like a phantom to her; so pale and perfect was he, in her eyes! And how his eyes sparkled in the sunlight! Just like the brightest emeralds! She lost herself in his gaze. He in turn was mesmerized by her coal-black eyes, which seemed to reflect hints of grey and amber in the bright sun’s glow. Her honey-colored skin glistened in the heat. Her scent, of patchouli and rose water was intoxicating to him. He nearly swooned, and had to stop briefly. Was it the heat from the sun, or from her that was making him dizzy? No matter; soon enough he would bring her back to the cool forests of Arkadia.
As the lovers walked away from the village of Eden, Ziana cried as she spied her former home beyond the grove of fig trees. Anastasios wrapped an arm around her shoulder, “how now, my love. Do not fret. In due time we shall return, and retrieve your sons, to be raised in the Arkadian idyll, along with our own children. Rest assured.” He kissed her, tasting the sweetest honey on her lips.