"Now that you're gone I can't cry hard enough No, I can't cry hard enough For you to hear me now..." Can't Cry Hard Enough ~ Williams Brothers
Half blinded by tears, Emily stumbled to her car, sat down, and sobbed uncontrollably. She couldn’t believe it was over. Things had been so perfect... maybe too perfect, she reflected. She’d been so in love, so happy. And now her world was shattered in a million tiny pieces, and she had to pick them up and build it all over again. A world without any Mark in it... or at least not in the way she wanted him in it. If there was a God, he would’ve kept us together, she thought fiercely. There had to be some way... how could it be right to be apart when it was breaking her heart? They were made and meant for each other... it had taken them so long, but they had finally figured that out. The day he’d finally told her he loved her, she’d realized what had been missing from her life for so long - it had been him. But now everything was broken, and she didn’t know why, or how... just that somehow, they’d decided that for everything to work, they couldn’t be together off ice. Oh, Lord... how in the world could she keep going without him? How would she wake up tomorrow and skate with him? They’d sacrificed their love for their skating, and for their friendship, but right now, she couldn’t see either continuing without it. How could she could and skate with the man she’d loved - the man she still loved - and pretend nothing had happened? How could they go back to being just friends after knowing a love so real that they’d crossed all the boundaries to find it? She was a total wreck, and she knew there was no way she was going to drive home like this. She managed to stop crying and sighed. Oh, well. Her car could stay at the rink until tomorrow. Now, if she could only manage to control herself long enough to get a cab and get home... Inside, Mark was just as big a mess as she was. Once she’d left, reality had hit him like a brick. Oh, God... had he just told Em that it was over? That they couldn’t make things work? Had he been the one who’d ended it all? He knew that everything he’d said was true... he knew they couldn’t continue the way they had been... but he wasn’t thinking straight. All he wanted was to run after her, take her in his arms, tell her everything had been a mistake, that they’d find a way to make it work, that he couldn’t live without her around... Life without Emily. Or life the way it used to be... with Em as a partner, with Em as a friend... without Em to love. And not even the way it used to be, because now, the hope was gone... the hope that used to carry him through the hard days, the hope that someday, Em would love him. the wish that came true that day almost a year ago... Had it really been less than a year? It seemed like a lifetime ago. He could barely remember what life had been like before loving Emily. He didn’t want to remember... But now he had to, because they had to build their lives up all over again to make their partnership work. Sometimes he hated the sport, he really did. There were days like today when he wished he could throw his skates over the nearest bridge and live like a normal person. A life when he and Em could love each other and not have to worry about balancing skating and life. A life where this never would’ve happened, when they’d have had time and freedom to work around things like this without worrying that their career would be sacrificed because of it. Skating over love. Skating, which had been the most important thing in his entire life for almost two decades. Skating, which had brought them together, his obsession, his life. Now, he didn’t know what was more important - skating, or her. Before, skating would’ve taken priority over any relationship, any girl... but this was her. His Em... no longer. Was it worth giving her up for skating? Being together was wrenching them apart. Now, they were agreeing to stay apart to keep together. It didn’t make any sense, but it was the way they’d decided things had to be... Then why was it breaking their hearts?
Onto Part III ...: OR
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