Mona stood, looking at the note in her hands... The wind tossed her loose hair about her tiny 11-year-old body, and a chime sounded into the darkening twilight. A drop of rain hit the page in front of her. Or was it a tear? It must have been a tear, for she was silently weeping at the words from her beloved.
I so wanted to reassure you, to be the person you took me to be... but I cannot. We were happy, more than happy, and I am grateful for all the happiness that you gave to me. But it cannot last. We cannot last. We are doomed to fail again and again for you're so young, and I, too old for you, little girl. Please believe me, beloved, there is nothing more in the world I want than to be by your side forever. Nothing more than to always hold you, comfort you, love you. I love you. Remember that. I love you, little girl. Don't forget me when you grow up and I am gone. Please don't forget.
It was unsigned, but it needed no signature. And all the time she read it, she wept. "Rob" she cried into the darkness. She tore at the note in agony. "Don't leave me!!" Her screams were unheeded by anything but the wind and the ever vigilant moon, which echoed her sorrow with its blue hue. She took a step closer to the black waters and to death. Her little bare feet were now wet with the water lapping at the stony shore. Suddenly, she heard a leaf crinkle beneath someone's footsteps behind her. She looked into the lake in front of her, unable to believe her eyes.
There he stood.
"Rob?" she asked in a shaking voice.
"Mona..." He wrapped his warm arms around her slim waist and kissed her bare shoulder.
"What are you doing here?" she asked in confusion. "I don't understand... I thought you'd left me! Especially after I found this letter..."
"Where did you find this?" he asked. "Let me see it." He took the thin sheet of paper out of her outstretched hand. His lips moved slowly as he read the words on the page.
"Oh, Mona..." he breathed. "You didn't believe that did you?" She nodded her beautiful head in affirmation.
"I thought you were gone. I thought... I don't know what I thought. I didn't think... I just cried..." Another little tear made its way down her soft cheek. He turned her around, still holding her with one arm. The other hand reached out and gently brushed away the tear.
"I will never leave you, little one... I will never go away... We were meant to share each moment... Beside you is where I will stay... Never doubt that, Mona, never!" He held her tighter. "I wrote this in a time of darkness, when I thought you could never love me. It almost ate me alive. Almost. But you saved me. And I stayed. I realized that you were the one." He held her little sad face in his hands. "And I love you."
"Rob..." she whispered as his lips caressed hers. She pulled back a little. "I believe you..."
He led her slowly away from the shore, one arm around her tiny shoulders, glancing briefly back at the star-studded lake. He would never know how close he came to losing her that night.
The reviewing period for this story has ended.