Disclaimer: Sadly I do not own anything. Everything belongs to Janet Evanovich.

Summary: R/S After the break-up with Morelli, Steph is fed up with everything. She hides herself away in her own little world, thinking nobody truly cares about the real her. She does not dare to even consider that she could be wrong and so builds up a wall around her, not letting anybody get close to her again. How to change that? How to make her realise how mistaken she actually is?

A long way is to be taken from the people that love her. But maybe it needs an outsider to name the obvious and let her see straight again...


People talk a lot.

You cannot do anything against it, it just happens. And sometimes it is worth it to just listen and think about what they say. Because it might makes you see things clearer, makes you realise something you have not before.

So I have been told.

Let me show you.

People say women are more sensitive than men. That they take care of the subjects referring to the heart and soul. They are able to fill the lack of the men's inability in that respect.

Maybe they are right.

But what happens to those women who are afraid of feelings? What about women who hide their secret wishes and desires deep down inside? Women whose stories of life with men are only big miseries?

What do they say about them?

I do not know what they say. But I know those women. I know how they feel.

They are brave enough to let a handsome guy in their lives – sometimes even more than once over the years – and want to believe that this is a good guy, that he is good for them.

Only to have to realize how wrong they were. And believe me, they could not have been more wrong.

Understandably, they try to ease the pain, to make the hurt go away and go on with their lives. But what lives do they have now? Lives full of bitterness, distrust and loneliness.

To really be able to understand what they feel, you need to remember that everybody out there is only a human being full of dreams and hopes and needs.

People need people.

So everybody creates their own little world where they only let precious and special people in. Not many are allowed to get close, but those who are, are part of something important. They are pieces of something that mean the world to another.

So what happens now if said women let a guy become that precious to them?

They are happy. They have found a soul that belongs to their own one that fulfils them, makes them complete – or at least, that is what most of them think.

Because often it happens that that guy leaves their little world, in the process taking something with them, throwing away a valuable thing: an important part of the women's life.

These guys do not necessarily know about that. They most likely do not think when they hurt the women. They just do it, without knowing they are breaking a woman's heart.

Most women now retreat into their shells. Hide behind unbreakable barriers.

We all know at least one woman who does not retreat. Not at first, at least.

Just like in the life of other women too, a guy keeps invading her life over and over again. She does not mind, he is good looking. But then he leaves her, not planning on coming back anytime soon.

And she is heartbroken.

They have a past, they share many experiences and one of the two thinks it was love.

But she is wrong.

A few years go by and she meets a new guy. Not being able to chance him leaving her, too, she decides to marry him.

And he cheats on her.

Her heart cracks again, but this time a little hole remains. Not visible for the world outside, but her world is shaken.

Again time passes by and her first love comes back into her life and pursues her again. It seems so right to her, so predestined concerning their history, but again she is blinded.

It takes her a little while, and the confusing pressure of a weird acting man to make her realize it, but in the end she finally sees that he does not want her the way she is. And she has no strength to change for him, no willpower.

So she is alone again.

With a family that does not care about her, but about her status in society, and the Burg that takes in every step she makes with an unceasing hunger.

She dies inside.

And her little world is getting smaller and smaller by slowly kicking every person out that ever had the honor of being in it, thinking that everybody – especially men – only want to hurt her.

Once again she could not be more mistaken.

Because she misses something – the man who does everything for her, who suffers from pain seeing her with another man, but still keeping her close, who would endure anything just to make her happy.

She does not know that there is a man outside to whom she means the world.

She will probably never know it.

Until someone comes and forces her to open her eyes…