Icarus thought he was very much like the moon, and he often found himself gazing up
admiringly at it. Unlike himself, the moon was free, up and alive in the sky, gleaming
proudly for all to see.
Although Icarus wished to be free, he and his father could not escape easily, for the labyrinth
that imprisoned them was impossible to get out of. Daedalus had designed it in a way where
anyone who wandered too deep in would find themselves wondering which was the sky and
which was the ground. It had been so ingeniously designed that even Daedalus himself could
not escape it.
However, Daedalus had been working on a plan for quite some time now. With thread, wax,
and feathers collected over the years, he made two pairs of wings; one for himself, and one
for his son. He tested them while Icarus slept under the tower’s singular window, his face
glowing from the moonlight that melted into the room. Daedalus’ body created shapes on
the wall behind him. While he hopped around, flapping his arms in the air, black spots of
darkness danced left and right. His feet left the ground and his hair grazed the ceiling, and
his shadow was an ungodly, ominous creature, casted on the wall by the moon itself.
The very next day, Daedalus could not wait any longer. He explained his plan to Icarus, and
told him very seriously: “You must follow me at all times. You ought never to veer off into a
different path, for I will be the one to lead the way back to Athens, my home—soon to be
yours. You ought not to fly too low, or your wings will get soaked and the sea will take you.
But you ought not to fly too high either, or the sun will melt your wings into nothing and the
sea will still take you.”
While Icarus tried to pay attention to his father’s words, he could not ignore the buzzing
excitement spreading throughout his entire body. It was now morning, and very little
sunlight leaked in through the window, regardless of its large size. Why did it seem like
moonlight always came into the tower more easily and abundantly than sunlight did? While
Icarus had always felt like one with the moon, he still longed for the sunlight’s soft, warm
touch on his skin. But as his paleness demonstrated, he had gotten very little of it.
Daedalus flew out the window first, and Icarus followed. Flying was amazing, Icarus quickly
realised, as he flapped his arms up and down and flew steadily as to not go too high or too
low. Up on top of him was the sky, and down below him was the sea. Blue was everywhere;
there was the light blue in his father’s eyes up above his head, and the deep indigo of the
tower’s walls at night underneath his floating legs. He was surrounded by blue, enveloped by
it, almost lovingly. The wind caressed his skin too, kissing away at it with each flap of his
wings. But most importantly, there was the sun, somewhere above or below, perhaps in the
middle or everywhere, warming him up more than he had ever been warmed up.
Icarus was reminded of the moon and the sun’s sad tale of forbidden love. They danced
around one another forever, the moon coming up in the evening as soon as the sun had left,
sometimes getting close but never close enough to kiss. But Icarus was so close now, closer
than he had ever been before, and felt as though perhaps that terrible tale of impossibilities
could end right then and there. He did not have to get too close, no—certainly not close
enough to kiss, for the sea would then take him. He would simply get a little closer, just a
little bit more, just so the sun’s followers, the sun’s faithful sunrays, could caress his face a
little bit better, could lap away at his tears with more efficiency. The sun was this grandiose
beam of light, round and majestic, and it grew bigger and bigger before him, until it took up
all of his vision.
Icarus heard a long scream, a ribbon of warnings thrown his way from his father behind him,
but did not have time to understand them. Before he could realise what was happening,
Icarus had already begun plummeting down towards the sea. The large circle that was the
sun shrunk smaller and smaller until it was nothing but a speck of light in the desert of blue
that surrounded him, right until the sea finally took a hold of him and what remained of his