I was at home, on the white couch, in front of the TV. It was a romance movie, about a boy and a girl, but I couldn't focus on it enough to know the plot. Every time I saw the boy's green eyes,  I couldn't help but think of Ben. As soon as he had left my hospital room, I had broken down in wet sobs. The nurse had come in, and was alarmed at my heart rate, so she gave me some sedatives. Thankfully, they had given the first dreamless sleep in a long time.

It had been three weeks. School was almost out, but I had no intention of going back. As soon as the next school year began, I was transferring. My parents would be coming home, and would be moving to California. I would live with them. Also, Aunt Amy and Teddy were moving to Massachusetts, because Amy had been offered a job there. It would be a year of change.

I would make all new friends, and start a new life.

And Ben would never be able to find me.

At this thought, I broke down in sobs again. Only once I had returned home did I realize that I would never forget him. His eyes, the way he talked, how he always knew what I was thinking. And I had pushed him away. Yes, he would be overwhelmed with jobs and responsibilities, but there would forever be a hole in my heart from him.

Once the sobs died down, and I was just left with trails of saltwater, I went to the bathroom.

I was shocked to see blue streaks drying on my cheeks.

I wiped them away with a washcloth, but couldn't wash away the memories. How could I ever pursue a real life, knowing what I was? How could I ever let anyone else in, and let them know what I was? These questions plagued me until the doorbell rang. I walked to it, rubbing my sore eyes.

As I turned the knob and opened the door, I was met by the only person who would ever know the real me.

"Ben!" I cried, and flung myself into his arms. I thought I heard him whisper my name, but often my mind deceived me. I worked as hard as I could to keep the tears in, but they overflowed. I exhaled as I felt his arms wind around me, keeping me whole.

He smelled like saltwater.

When I gained control of myself, he pushed me back, but held my shoulders at arms length. He looked in my eyes, then down at my side. I pulled up my blue cami so he could see the sun shaped scar that was left from the stitches.

Though he tried to hide it, I could see him writhing.

I made my voice light. "It doesn't even hurt, really. It's just warm, which is really weird. But it looks kind of cool, don't you think?" I asked, pulling the shirt back down. He grinned, but it didn't meet his eyes, which were bloodshot. We stood there for a minute, and I didn't know what to say.

He spoke. "I thought I should let you know, that I'm leaving." I stared at him blankly before realizing that he was waiting for me to say something.

"Oh. When will you be back?"

"Never." I blinked a few times, not comprehending.

"N-never? Where are you going?"

He looked over my head, inside the house, and at the ground, but never in my eyes. "The Indian Ocean. My men have some leads on the whereabouts of              . There are rumors that she is going to start another army." My memory snapped back, and I realized that I was in the presence of the King of                .

"Well," I swallowed hard, "that should be fun." He didn't say anything, but looked behind him. I saw two shadows behind a tree, and gasped. Martha and          emerged, and I ran out to hug them. They hugged me back with equal enthusiasm, and I was relieved to see them alive.

"I'm so glad neither of you were hurt at the battle!"
"I'm glad you weren't hurt either, my dear," Martha said lovingly.

          wore a frown, but I knew he was thinking the same thing.

"So, I guess you are leaving also?"

They looked at each other, shared a silent conversation, then back at me.

"The King's advisers need to  be with him," Martha replied tentatively.

"Right, of course. The King." We stood there for a few moments, then Martha came over and hugged me once more.         just stood there, looking forlorn.

"Goodbye," I said, and they turned around and walked behind the trees, where I couldn't see them anymore.

Ben was still standing at the front step, where I left him. He looked uncertain about something, but I ignored it and walked over to him. He embraced me in a hug.

"My heart will always be yours, wherever we go. Just know that." He pulled back and turned around, right before the tears exploded from my eyes and the door closed.

The picture of his back towards me, walking away has been forever ingrained in my mind.

I will always hold onto his heart.

Sometimes we need to learn what we can live without to know how strong we really are.




The End

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