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If endless love was a dream, then it was a dream we all shared, even more than we all shared the dream of never dying or of traveling through time, and if anything set me apart it was not my impulses but my stubbornness, my willingness to take the dream past what had been agreed upon as the reasonable limits, to declare that this dream was not a feverish trick of the mind but was an actuality at least as real as that other, thinner, more unhappy illusion we call normal life. After all, the intimations of endless love were the same now as they were thousands of years before, while normal life had changed a thousand times and in a thousand different ways. Which, then, was more real? In love, and willing to sacrifice anything for it, I felt myself connected to all of human time, to slaves weeping on the auction block, to musicians strumming beneath moon-bright balconies, and, whether she wanted me or not, to Jade. But if I were to turn away from love, if I were to put it at arm’s length and do what was expected of me, who would be my companions then?