CHAPTER 8

It was hard to watch, as she ran into his arms. I knew I would never get to experience that, knew just how lucky he was to be able to even so much as hold her. I just hope he knew. I hope he treasured her for everything she was, gave her all she deserved. I watched as she lived her days out with him, the perfect fairy-tale ending she had been waiting for. It wasn't easy, just watching. I wanted so bad to take his place, to jump in front of her and let her know that I wasn't dead, that I was alive. It hurt, every time I saw him hold her hand, or hold her close, or share in her secrets. It was all I could do not to cry, remembering the secrets we shared and the way her hand felt so right in mine. When he made her laugh, I cried. When he made her cry, I seethed with anger. I wanted so badly to be him. Curse the world, for being so cruel.

But, I had to walk away. She may have had my heart, but her heart belonged to someone else. I couldn't give her what she deserved, the life she was meant to have. I was no knight in shining armor, no handsome prince. I was the monster the knight slayed, and monsters don't have happily ever afters. So, I made do. I watched from afar, and did my best to make her happy. She never stopped being beautiful, never stopped being perfect. She was happy, or so I could tell. Still, I couldn't help but hope. Every time she watched the horizon, or stopped to pick a four-leafed clover, or made a wish, I prayed that she was wishing or watching for me. That maybe, just maybe, she didn't forget those few short days.

But, it wasn't meant to be. She had her happily ever after, and I watched from the sidelines. No one ever told me that hearts were so fragile, and that a broken one could hurt so badly.