(Originally posted with the title The Wonder of Twilight in response to a writing prompt by Amy Knepper on the Google+ Writer’s Discussion Group.)
As the sun dropped below the mountains that surrounded San Raphael she watched the lights of the city come to life. First one or two, maybe those the less frugal had left on during daylight hours. Then three, five, ten, flicking to life in rapid succession as light faded, until there was a twinkling sea of light in the valley. It had always been Aimee’s favorite time of day, knowing that families wound down their days, lovers met for trysts under the cover of darkness, and elders praised the Sun God for another day of life and looked forward to waking in the morning.
Aimee walked down the pathway from her clifftop perch and soon the tumbled rock path turned into marble pavers as she entered the temple proper. Before her the chalice burned bright, holding the promise of the sun’s return through the night, lit by the acolytes at the moment the sun had begun to set. She knelt to offer the prayer that her order had murmured for time beyond knowing
“Light of the day, deity of life, bestow your blessing
On the people of the cities
On the beasts of the plains
On the birds of the skies
On the creatures of the seas
On your humble servant
Until once again you shine in the morning sky.”
Rising, she climbed the marble steps to the cloister to seek her bed to await sunrise, knowing that all was right in her world.