Once there were two brothers who stole some bread from a witch. And the witch caught the boys when they came back to steal some more because they had seen that she had plenty. They had already taken bites out of the bread they stole when the witch grabbed them by the ears and sat them down. She asked them if they knew how many moons it took her to make that bread which she called moon bread, though she knew full well that she had made the bread in an instant to tempt these innocent creatures.
The witch told them that they were cursed for having eaten the bread. The boys cried as she told them that one day they would be separated and one of them would die and the other would know it and the one who survived would also die within a cycle of the full moon.
The boys ran home and told nobody about the curse and tried to forget it. But each brother kept thinking about it and felt the hot pain of the witch’s ear pinch when they did. Each brother wondered if it was he who would die first and if it were better or worse than the other fate.
Years passed and the brothers tired of trying to forgot about the moon bread curse. And one brother got tired of always being with his brother. And one night, under a full moon, he snuck away to go swimming at the lake. In the middle of the dark pool, while he floated under the moon, a pain struck his chest and he couldn’t breathe. At that moment, his brother awoke and knew right away that his brother was dead and he knew exactly why. He looked outside and saw the full moon and knew he had only a month to live.
He rode off on his horse to escape his fate. He rode fast and wildly wherever any path would take him. The closer he got to the next full moon the more distance he traveled. But the full moon came and went and nothing happened. And another. And after a third, he thought that there was no curse at all. His brother simply had an accident.
As he rode back home, winter had come. The landscape had already changed. Snow-laden fields and rocks glazed with ice made it difficult to recognize the terrain. The land had become barren and he began to wonder where the trees went. It was so cold that under the moonlight he could see that his skin had turned blue. He had forgotten when his horse could not carry on, but found himself kicking snow across these desolate hills when a figure in the distance appeared.
The figure looked even bluer than he. The man had translucent icicles hanging from his limbs. Clearly, he had been frozen there a long time. But his lips could still move slightly and only one word could slip out. Brother. That frozen blue and purplish face that upon first glance seemed blank to him was now clearly his brother’s face. And his brother’s frigid eyes cracked the ice to look up at the sky. So he turned around and saw that the moon was no longer in the sky but there was a blue orb.
A cruel wind sucked at them and it carried the wicked shrieking laughter of the witch. As he clinged to his brother, the wind pulled them toward a crater. At its lip, he hunkered down, held his brother in his arms, and witnessed the last image of his consciousness while peeking over the lip: at the center of the crater was a black hole into which the snow and ice fell in to its vacuum but once in the crater moved strangely, more like mercury than frozen water. And there was this aura emanating from above the black pit. A silver mist shined what appeared to be an ethereal dome of intricate geometries composed of something like an infinite number of light-bearing snowflakes.