AN: Just something I needed to get off my mind…

He watched as she slumbered beside him, her bare back was facing him, her pink tresses seductively splayed across his sheets, and he wondered how she could sleep so soundly knowing how things were between them. It was a fact he knew they'd have to go through at some point, this was never easy, yet it was not possible to choose the path she wanted. He was in too deep, he felt trapped, but having what he wanted would cost him everything he had worked so hard to achieve. She moved a bit to her right and he knew she wasn't as peaceful in her sleep as he initially thought. Strange that her movements were so familiar to him, almost as if she'd only need to bat an eyelash and he'd know what she wanted to say. He had gone far deeper than he had intended, it was a comfort and a predicament at the same time. He smiled bitterly, irony, after all, was normal in his life.

"Why?" he simply asked.

"Because I love you." She simply said.

He looked at the top of her head, not really expecting her to reply but not surprised that she was awake. The answer wasn't even cryptic to him, as much as his question wasn't to her, she knew him far too well. He didn't care for the tears he knew she was hiding though, just the tone of her voice told him everything she didn't want him to see. He wanted to curse her, for trying to spare him. He had always been silent, but this time it was for no reason. He was simply at a loss for words, whatever he said would hurt her, and yet by staying silent he knew he was doing just that anyway. He cursed himself instead.

"I know. You don't have to feel guilty." Her voice was so soft.

"Then why do you still stay?" He could barely get the words out.

"Because I love you." She said again.

He was always indifferent, but he had no idea he'd come to hate the word love so much. Ironic.

"I don't deserve your tears or your love." He said instead.

She faced him. It struck him how beautiful she looked against the dark skies behind her. The view he paid for in his too expensive condominium unit suddenly paled in comparison to the beautiful sorrow etched in her features. A second more looking into her eyes would have broken his resolve. He looked away, he needed his sanity. Yet he could not deny that those green orbs saw too deep, his instinct told him to get away. And he would have done so, if not for the cool fingertips grazing his cheek, beckoning him to look at her again.

"What do you want from me?" He spat, wanting to hurt her, make her go away.

"This night." She knew what he wanted, what he needed.

He was supposed to protect her from further pain, and there she was saving him from his own. He was selfish, he took what he couldn't give. It shouldn't be this hard to break her heart, he knew he would from the start. But it tore him to pieces to see how she was trying to pick up hers. If only things were simple, he found himself wishing. But he was in chains, bound to a cause he knew he can never break. Having a glimpse of happiness was already too much. She was mending a heart she did not break.

"Will you be satisfied with just that?" He prayed she'd say no.

"It will be enough." She was determined.


She stopped him with her lips, she knew he'd think she just wanted the contact. But she did it because she knew she could not handle another rejection from him. She tried to be strong, and for the most part she knew she succeeded. But there were times she didn't know how to keep standing. He was the love of her life, but life was cruel. She had seen countless of times how his love for her would die in his eyes, rekindled by circumstances, and lost again to the same fate that brought them closer. She tried not to make him a part of her life, kept herself from seeking the voice that could calm all her fears. Inevitably, not even the haziest of fogs could keep her from finding him. She was in too deep, getting out would hurt more than accepting the fact that love wasn't enough.

"Let me dream Itachi, give me this at least."

She knew she had won the battle when he had lain with her and held her close to his heart. But the war was lost, she guessed there was comfort in knowing she didn't mind losing that, but comes with it was letting go. That her dreams would always be dreams, that her reality was one without him. A steep price to pay for falling when she was never supposed to, craving for the forbidden. She knew he felt it as her tears cascaded down her cheeks, the quick beating of his heart and tightening of his embrace were small comforts that he at least cared for her.

"I love you." His voice never sounded so beautiful until that time.

Three words, eight letters, joy and pain, what could have been a beginning turned to an end. More tears fell as she heard goodbye in those uttered words, as truth gave way to the most painful heartache. It was the only time she wished he had lied, because as much as she wanted to hear them, she knew it sealed their destiny.

"Sweet dreams." She kissed his lips and stroked his long, dark hair.

And he had them until morning came.

The only proof she had ever existed in his life was the scent she left and the memories that hung in the air. He wished they were tangible, he wished the dream was his reality.