Hope is a merciless tormentor. It's the sound of trickling water to parched lips. The prospect of love to the unlovable. A miracle cure to the parents of a dying child. It holds up victory over the inevitable and beckons us to crawl further over slicing shards, all the while pulling back, remaining just out of reach. It makes agony out of mere pain by pretending a different outcome could have been. It laughs at mankind's embrace of it after millennia of disappointment.