Disclaimer: I don't have anything to do with Joey I just wrote this story.

A Child Looked Back –

When she looked at the man before her all understanding of who she was and what she wanted was lost. She didn't understand how she could love someone like that.

When she looked at the man before her, a child looked back. Immaturity, youth and carelessness shone through his eyes. She watched him play his games, yell at the television when his man died and sulk when the yelling got him nowhere. She watched him as he used an imagination most lost after childhood. He held on to a part of himself that all others let go. She didn't understand how she could love a child who masqueraded as a man.

When she looked at the man before her, the man every girl is warned off took his form. He was a player, a man who held no regard for the female's feelings. She watched as he brought women to his home, walked them through his door and up the stairs straight into his bedroom. Some were beautiful, much better looking then she. Some were the kind of women who had been pushed into the background their entire lives, who before had only ever looked at the beautiful with a sense of longing and sadness. Those always looked thrilled to be walking up into his bedroom, every one deciding that there must be some good men in the world after all, all setting themselves up for disappointment, all with a future that involved looking longingly at a phone waiting for a phone call that would never come. Many of the women knew what they were getting into when they walked past the threshold and into his room. She watched those ones leave with hate shooting out of her eyes. She didn't understand how she could love a man who at thirty-five refused to give up the life of a bachelor.

When she looked at the man before her, the fairytale she had entertained since girlhood was washed away. There was once an eight-year-old girl with long dirty blonde hair and a butterfly hairclip who dreamed of the perfect boy. She didn't dream of a prince but she dreamed of someone who would love her without been asked. The eight year old could not remember been told she was loved without first asking a parent whether or not they loved her, she could not remember been volunteered that information. Her dream boy would tell her every day. Her dream boy would kiss her everyday. He would kiss only her. He would stare at her with his green eyes and blonde hair flopping over his features in a way that made her feel like the most beautiful thing on earth. He would not make her feel second best, the runner up behind her sister. She didn't understand how she could want the man before her, the man who looked at her like she was one of the guys, more then she wanted her fairytale.

She looked at the man before her and the person she had fallen in love with shone through. She watched as he conversed with his sister. She was distressed and he was comforting. His ability to make people feel special was his best quality. He was been so gentle and kind, so mature and understanding. She could feel herself melting as his words washed over her. It was in these moments that she understood. She understood that she loved him because he could be a man but he could also be a boy. She understood that he was nothing like her fairytale but on closer inspection he was everything she ever wanted. He may not be blonde and beautiful but he was dark, warm and handsome. He may not have looked at her like she was the most beautiful person in the world but he had once and she knew he still had the ability to. He may have had many women but she knew that when the right one came along he would drop all the others for that girl. She didn't know if that girl would be she but she did hold the hope it would be.

She loved him because he was a child at heart and that child brought out the eight-year-old girl she had suppressed. He made her happy and carefree like she hadn't been in years. She looked at the man before her and she understood. She loved him because of things she never imagined loving a man for. She looked at him and finally made an admission to herself, the person she had always strived to be wouldn't love this man but the person she was wouldn't have him any other way.

A/N: Please leave a review. Flames are welcome.