His revelation meant nothing. How could it? He was the second son of a minor noble; she was the heir of a Major House, and already engaged. What he felt meant little compared to that. Duty bound them both so tightly, he felt it like a noose, choking the life from him. He loved her, gloriously, blissfully, painfully passionately. But it mattered not.

He should put it out of his head, forget the entire impossible, foolish, childish idea. It wasn't his place. He tried to forget what he could never have.

The fact that he loved her didn't change anything.