It's not fair to her, he knows. She shouldn't have to suffer because he's weak. She's bound to blame herself, but it can't be helped. Because it has to be done. It'll be better for her in the long run.

It's not that he doesn't care about her. That's just the problem. He loves her, and it's not the stupid school-boy puppy love that she reads about in her sappy romance books. It's a painful, burning love that makes him want to shred anyone who even looks at her the wrong way. The kind of love that fills him with an incredible self-loathing when he's done something to hurt her in the slightest. He loves her. And for some sick reason, she loves him.

If this were a fairytale, they'd be living happily-ever-after. But it's not and they won't ever get that chance. Because he's god knows how many years older then she and she's the girl with the deadly skin. And so here he is, taking her bare hands in his, bring them to his lips, and prays that he won't wake her.

Because whether or not she knows it, it's for the best.

"I love you, Marie."