"Grace." His breath is warm and sweet as his face leans in to press his soft lips against my own. I allow my thoughts to melt away for the brief amount of seconds that our lips meet. When the cold night air touches them once more I stare into his icy blue eyes.
"Yes?" I reply slowly, hoping and praying for the moment to never come to an end.
He drew in a breath as if ready to say something longer but instead he simply replied with a faint "Goodnight" and reluctantly let go of my hand as I turned and travelled up the porch steps into the dimly lit house. The moment before I closed the door I could have sworn I heard the words "My love" sound in addition to his "Goodnight" with his silk-like voice.
When I hear the door click my body let out a deep sigh and I smile. "Goodnight, Sam." I continue to stay by the door for moment upon moment until I hear him drive away. Upstairs, I let my hair go wild while I untangle all the snarls caught in the midst. Eventually, I curl up into the covers and drift off to sleep.
"And you really can't remember anything, Eliza?"
I sigh. Of course not. I've been through this routine thousands of times and yet, somehow, everyone thinks that by some miracle I will remember. But it's not possible and I will not waste my life away relying on hope and a mere possibility.
"No, James. I can't. I told you that. Why can't any of you just get that my memories are never going to come back?!" I shut my eyes tight. "I'm sorry. I don't mean to snap. It's just," I pause. "It's just that I have waited years for someone to walk through the door and for no reason at all claim me. Tell me who I used to be." I sigh and place my head gently on his shoulder. We sit in silence, but somehow, we always know what each other would say if we did talk. Right now is one of those moments I am especially grateful.
After a few moments I take my head away and lay in the soft grass. I close my eyes. He wraps takes my hand and plants his lips onto mine. So familiar. So warm. And yet somehow I can't help but feel that it isn't right. But I push that thought out of my head. Almost.
"Bianca, will you marry me?" My heartbeat beats faster and faster and guilt pound through my veins. "No!" I snap into the mirror. "No! This is wrong!" I reach my hands up to touch the back of my neck and sit down on the bed. My elbows inch together and then bow down to find my knees.
"How can I do this?" My voice is a whisper. If I love Bianca as much as I claim I do then why all of this guilt?! Grace died years ago. I can't get her back. I think. That cold truth stabs a knife into my heart. Am I ready to do this? Can I really move on?
The answer comes, but I don't want to hear it.