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He curls next to me where I lie on the forest floor, willing me with his eyes and body to get up and follow him.

Iím hurting. I canít. Yes you can. I canít. Please...what do you want with me? Donít be afraid. I will not let anything hurt you. Iím here to guide you. Iím not worth your time. Just let me be. Let me go. Let me die.

His deep yellow eyes stare into me, down deep into the depths of my soul. I feel his gaze penetrate, and his thoughts...I curl tighter into a ball and look away, fear flowing through my body, fear and a horrible shame that stems from feeling completely alone and unworthy. Tears form in my eyes.

No. He lays his head against my cheek, his fur soft and warm. No. I will not leave you here. I will not leave you alone. I come to love you. I come to protect you. I come because you are worthy. You are. You are afraid, and that is understandable. You are afraid of yourself. I will help you learn and grow to love yourself. This pain will not last. Believe me when I tell you that you are a good person. You have so much to give. I have been sent to help you learn how to give it.

Please, I donít deserve...Oh, but you do. Angel, you do. You donít have to be afraid anymore. Iím here now. I love you. Iíll never go away. The time is now.

He leans his body into mine, and I bury my face in his warm, musky fur and let the tears come. Great waves of pain drown my senses, bubbling out from my soul. I can finally cry, and everything that has been held inside for so long streams out, threatening to drown me. I cling to the wolf, and his love cocoons me, a great white, warm light, soothing the pain, taking away the fear and rage and shame that surge to the surface. He reassures me all the while. Thatís right, let it out. Youíve endured so much for so long. Itís time to let it go. Let me take it away. Let me carry it for you. Youíve traveled with this burden far too long. Love will make it better. Iím here now.

A soft cry escapes me. Sssh. Itís all right. Iím here. Let it go, angel. Let it go. You have my love. You no longer need to carry these memories. Let them go. His energy draws everything out of me, lifting it away. He nuzzles my face with his muzzle, soothing me. Drained, I relax against him, the tears slowing and then tapering into nothingness. There now. There now, he says. Iím here. Sleep overtakes me then.