Second Best

He looked at her from the door. He admired her beauty from where he stood and couldn't believe that there she was, standing there, only a few feet away from him.

She wore a white dress. It fitted her figure perfectly. Her hair down and around her shoulders, the way she knew he liked it. Her lips, ruby red from that lipstick she wore and her eyes stood out like it always did to him.

He wasn't suppose to be there and he knew it but no one could stop him because she was the most beautiful thing he had set his eyes on and now, he wanted her back.

That white dress wasn't just any dress. It was her wedding gown. She was getting married. She was going to be happy and say the "I do's" and cherish the man she had chosen to be her husband.

She sees him through the mirror. But she knew he had been there from the start. Somehow his presence always seemed to give her a tingle all over. She didn't turn around instead she stood in front of the mirror waiting for him to say the first word. Yet he hadn't.

She was happy. She was getting married to a man she adored and respected. Her parents approved of him and she was happy to abide by her parents wishes, as always. Nothing could go wrong. Nothing could ever go wrong now because she had reached something she never thought that was possible. To be able to walk down that aisle in that white dress and be wedded.

So why was he here standing by the door? That was something she would like to know too. She waited for him to say something; anything but he seemed to just stand there. When she finally realized that he would not speak she turned around to face him.

"What are you doing here?" She asked him with a frown.

"I came to see the bride," he replied calmly. Although his face showed no sense of panic within him he was scared to his wits.

He walked into the room and stood right in front of her. He reached up to touch her cheek. She backed off and it hurt him. She saw though his eyes and knew that it would have been less painful if she had stabbed him in the heart.

He looked away from her then looked back at her, straight into her eyes.

"Why are you marrying him?" He's voice barely a whisper.

She had expected the question. "Because he's everything I have ever wanted in a man. He's intelligent, successful and my parents approve of him," she replied with her head held high.

He laughs lightly. "You forget that he's also rich and the fact that him being intelligent and successful is not what you want, it's what your parents want."

"You don't know what I want." She informed him.

"I know that that's the same reason you told everyone else about the guy you're marrying. I know that you are doing this because your parents want you too and I also know that you, don't love him." He said to her.

She didn't answer him.

He looked at her with a smile. "You love him, right?" He knew the answer.

"I have learned to love him." She replied to him.

"Learned to love him? That is the most pathetic thing I have ever heard. You can't learn to love someone because that's not love and you know it. Deep down in your heart you know that this is wrong."

"And you know what love is?" She spat at him.

"I know that when I was with you it was just a glimpse, but if I were to spend my life with you I know for sure what it is."

She shook her head. "It's too late."

"It's never too late. Never ever too late," he declared.

She looked to the ground. "It is to me. My parents are sitting out there. They want me to marry this man because they know he will treat me right. They know what is right for me."

"I can't believe you." He exclaimed. "All these years you have wanted to do what you wanted and now you give up. Now you say you want to do what your parents want. This determines you life! You want to be with a man that doesn't make you happy?"

"Who said I wasn't happy?" She tried to hide the lie in the sentence. She felt like vulnerable in front of him. She couldn't seem to hide anything from him.

"Where's the smile? Where's the joy? Just one look at you and I know that you're unhappy. All of them sitting out there may not know it but I do because I know you, you don't want to be here, with him."

He reached up and touched her cheek again. This time she let him.

"Come with me," he whispered.

"I can't," she cried.

The tears streaked down her face. As they did she sunk into his embrace and fell to the ground. She cried her heart out and it hurt him to see her like that. It hurt him worse than losing her to someone she didn't even seem to know. He sat there holding her, letting her cry. He kissed her forehead and the tears that made rivers on her cheeks.

"Promise me something," she managed to say through the tears.

"Anything," he answered softly.

"When the Priest asks if anyone objects don't say anything. Don't object no matter if you think this is wrong. Promise me that."

"I can't do that." His heart sunk at her plea.

"Please, for me. Promise me," she begged.

He sighed and shook his head. "If it's what you want…"

"Yes, it's what I want."

"Are you sure?" He asked again hoping she would change her mind. Hoping that she would see what she was doing.

She nodded her head silently afraid that her voice would betray her. She looked up at him and kissed him. He could taste the salty tears from her cheek. She broke away, unwillingly. One final kiss but no goodbyes.

She stood at the top of the aisle. A forced smile upon her face and a forced heart to go with it. She saw him from the corner of her eye. He looked her and worshipped her like a goddess. He couldn't convince her and he couldn't have her. She had indeed settled for second best.

Before the Priest asked for any objects he got up and walked outside. It was the only way he knew that he could keep that promise for her. She knew he had gone because the moment he got up the whole room seem to feel empty, she felt empty. She had made him promise and yet somehow she wish he would say something but it was too late, she was wedded to a man she hardly knew. While they took photos of her smiling face her heart had lost everything.

Before she left he handed her a small box. She opened it and inside sat a gold ring. Engraved inside the ring was an unfinished equation. Her initials plus his initials equals. She looked out at him before the car drove off. He silently mouthed to her forever.

Author's Note: This is something different from what I normally write. I hardly write in third person but please leave a review however small. They really do make my writing worth posting. Any opinions are welcomed.