A vignette.

The deep night has many stars in it. She watches them like she watches you: closely, attentively. It seems like these stars won't move but she knows that is a fallacy. Eventually, they will collide with our world and destroy everything we know. This frightens her. She doesn't want it all to end.

She's walking beside you. She is so scared. Strange. Everyone always saw this dark young girl as creepy, self-assured, impudent, outspoken – but not tonight. Tonight, she is unable to say a word.

She shivers. She's so cold. Perhaps, if you wrapped her in your embrace, she would become warm again. She wishes that you would. She needs you. She may seem strong and may talk of violence. She may be fierce and aggressive but, on the inside, she is just a frail little girl that longs for love. For compassion. For someone to come and sweep her off of her feet.

Be her prince.

Be her white knight.

Be her guardian angel.

That's all she asks. What she only wants. And she longs for contact. She's hurting. She's lonely. Sometimes it seems impossible to love again, after all the pain and heartache. Sometimes a girl just grows cynical, cold, disbelieving, after everything is done.

Sometimes she cries herself to sleep at night.

I won't fall in love again, she says.

Love is pain, she thinks.

I won't be weak, she swears.

Love is a lie, she claims.

She's really lying to herself. Because she's so afraid. Because she's been hurt so much. Because almost everyone close to her has wounded her heart. Because she's been broken and reformed and reforged and strengthened so many times. Because she's been forced to heal. Because she's survived one too many heartaches.

Won't you tell her that all she believes is false? That she doesn't have to hide who she is anymore? That you won't break her heart again?

You broke it, you know. Back before, when you refused her affections in order to protect her. Instead, you were the one who caused her the pain. Life is strange that way.

And still, she fell in love with you all over again. She is beginning to think that she never fell out. You ensnared her. Like wild game. Such an exotic animal. A rare find. Don't break her. Please don't break her spirit. Don't take away who she is. It's all she has left that hasn't been trampled. The only thing that isn't seen as trash. And she isn't trash. Don't waste what she has to give you.

She loves you.

But you already know that. Don't you?

A chilling wind steals away her heat. She walks beside you. She is so scared. Nervous. What if she's making a mistake? She trips, but you catch her before she falls. She seems so small, so fragile. Will you break her? Don't break her.

You hold her close. Slowly, she relaxes. You must be magic, to calm her so quickly. But, if you are magic, you are not real. And then love is still a lie. She does not want love to be a lie. She wants to believe. She needs to believe. She is trying to be brave. So, she will not say that you are magic. She says something courageous instead.

I love you. I love you.