He catches her as she drops to her knees because if she falls, he will, too. Her breaths come in frenzied gasps, and she clutches at the glowing necklace like it's an anchor, and it takes everything he has inside of him not to rip it away and to say to hell with this entire ordeal.

But he doesn't. "Alice, look at me," he demands, cupping her face in his hands, urging bloodshot eyes to look into his own. Tears stain her cheeks, marring the pale porcelain and kissing his fingertips as they burn across the surface. He cannot do this, he cannot see her like this. So broken, so… hopeless. She is the strength of the two of them, and he is the coward. She is the light in the darkness, and there is no way he can do this without her. They will never find Cyrus if she gives up now. This will all have been for nothing.

And more than that he needs her to believe because when you get right down to it, he's still a selfish bastard. He needs her to believe in her own happy ending because it gives him something to believe in again.

"Listen to me, love," he says. He presses his forehead to hers, reveling in the warmth, and willing calm into her bones like waves on a shore. "We're gonna find him. We will find him, and we will get the bloody hell out of this place, and we will never, ever have to come back again."

Her bottom lip trembles at his words and a fresh onslaught of tears begin to well in her eyes. She reaches up with shaky hands and cradles his face, holding him close. It's almost too close for him, the way her breath caresses his lips and pulls at the lump in his throat. His skin dances hungrily at the sensation, and he swallows hard because he has to remind himself yet again that she is not his, and God, why does he have to do that so often now?

"Do you promise?" she whimpers, and her voice is so child-like that it betrays her years and breaks his heart.

And he wishes for one solitary moment that he could find it in himself to be wholly selfish now. To take her away from Wonderland and Cyrus and every goddamn thing here that could ever hurt her and just start fresh in some other realm, somewhere where she could be safe and happy and loved.

But he wraps himself around her instead, holding her in a lover's embrace even though he knows that can never be between them, and presses his lips to the crown of her head before he can even stop himself.

"I promise, Alice," he says. "I do. Just don't give up, okay, love? I need you to have hope. For the both of us."

Will isn't sure how long they stay like that. But she nods her head against him, burying her soft sobs into the warmth of his shoulder until finally she loses her battle against fatigue and relaxes sleepily in his arms.

He exhales deeply once she's still, laying down on the damp grass, taking her with him. He clings to her like a dying breath, pushing tendrils of dark blonde curls from her eyes, wiping the last remnants of tears away.

She is the only hope he has left, and he refuses to lose that. Even if he will ultimately lose her to Cyrus, he needs this. Because this is the only thing that makes sense anymore. This is the only thing he can find it in himself to believe in.

He twines his fingers with hers and presses his lips to her forehead before allowing sleep to take him too.