She heard the bear clawing at the door to the library, the place where her tutor used to read to her when she was a little girl growing up in this old hacienda. Those days of childhood had dried up and the only things remaining were the tattered rooms of the great house, a library of dusty books, and the bear. The bear was hungry.
She had shoved the green couch in front of the door when she first heard the roar of the great beast as it ambled through the halls, past the neglected skeleton of the manservant, and began to hunt for food. It had eaten everything else. In the minutes before the bear smelled her and came for her, she had piled up as many books on the couch as she could, trying to weigh it down, to prevent the creature from slamming down the door with its enormous paw. And now she watched as, with each thud of the bear against the door, the couch jumped an inch and a sliver of light sliced through, getting bigger with each strike. The wood was cracking. The hinges were pulling away from the frame. The door would only hold another minute, and then the bear would be inside the library.
She turned and looked out the broken windowpane at the fountain. It was there, when the fountain had flowed, years ago now, where she had made her pact with Julian. A distant, faded season of love, now gone. Another blow from the bear. The sound of the door splintering. The smell of the beast. She looked out at the fountain. She waited.