The noise began slowly and softly, like summer rain falling on a tin roof, coming from the moonless air and issuing its macabre melody to the tree skeletons and cold street.
It was quiet at first. And as the night began to darken around me, I could see the stars fading away into pinpoints of light and the sound grew, like an echo, a phrase repeated over and over.
I stopped in my tracks, listening hard. A whisper floating on air, innocuous, accompanied by the misplaced sound of horse hooves. It spoke: "Come and see!"
Suddenly, he was there.
The dark figure loomed in front of me, making me stumble backwards. In the darkness, I could make out the large figure of a horse, with a man astride.
The horse, pale in color, pawed the ground and looked at me with dead, cloudy eyes.
The figure on the horse was tall and broad shouldered, and his image seemed to shimmer slightly, never seeming to settle on one image, flickering back and forth in ghostly hues.
My breath caught in my throat, my body turning cold. The sudden silence was so strong that I couldn't even find the beat of my heart within my chest.
I stood frozen until he spoke to me.
He spoke in a lazy and arrogant, yet undeniably powerful tone, lulled into a dangerous cadence.
"White, Red, Black, Pale
A blunt separation, a covering veil
The seals that were broken, we ride on the air
Four ways that we travel, a curse that we bear
The sword and the Lamb and the beasts and defeat,"
He turned away as if to depart, but glanced back at me, looking me right in the eyes.
"My work on this world is not yet complete."
And with that he was gone, the sound rushing back into the night.