The crucial question. The one and only answer. One he had, the other he so desperately needed.
A year ago he'd been convinced he knew the question. He'd prepared, he'd practiced, the whole thing was set up. And he was so sure of the answer. He just had to ask the question, and hear the answer. Happily ever after.
How quickly things had changed.
So much had happened. The world was dying. Perhaps it was already dead. Everywhere, things were falling to pieces, and only he could stop it. So the world asked him the crucial question. Not his question. It's question. And he answered.
And now, now the world was in a thousand pieces on the ground, trying to pick itself up again. It had shattered somewhere between the middle and the end. And it asked a thousand questions, all without answers, and the one crucial question was lost amidst the noise. But he had a new question. Still the old remained unanswered, but if the answer to the new question was no...
Happily ever after would never come.
So he sought his answer. The question was asked a thousand times to a thousand people, and all eventually lead him here.
A shattered chapel. Stained glass windows shine patches of color on the splintered pews. Here, here is where his question could be answered. Here, in front of the alter he stands. Here is where the first question would have lead him if the answer was yes.
Here is where his heart breaks if the answer he seeks is no.
And they tell him the answer will be found here. He goes back outside. A field of yellow flowers, underneath the sun. A little bit of life left in his shattered world. He almost smiles.
And then he sees her. Among the ruins of a battle.
She is lying on her back in the field, her eyes closed. She does not move.
This is the crucial question.