By Carol Sandford


Chapter 01


I watched him from across the room. The natural illumination from the stars outside threw a shadow from his still, silent form, and even his darker duplicate could not hide the grief. Will was hurting, and I had never felt more powerless, or as useless as I did right then.

Had it really been been barely twenty four hours ago that had sent my Will from the happy-go-lucky joker, to the solitary man across from me now with his seemingly own personal black cloud hovering over his head?

But what could I do? He had asked to be left alone and that was unusual. Normally he would have been the first one to have pushed into your misery and forced you to talk to him; forced them to release the dam of tears that could eat you alive, and then force his arms around you until you gave in to the comfort that he so selflessly offered until you had no choice but to feel and accept that what Will was offering was better than the living nightmare that you were trapped in.

I know, I have been in that position, more than once, and he was there, Will was always there, pushing me, talking to me, comforting me. Loving me.

Expelling the frustrating breath, I looked around the lounge noticing that it was unusually quiet. But when my eyes settled back onto the solitary figure that continued to stare blankly out of the porthole, I understood why. Will's grief was so intense, so obvious, that an ache that wasn't even yours, settled into your own heart, like you were mourning along with him.

But I am determined that I am going to be here for him, whatever happens and however many times he tries to push me away. I'm not going anywhere and I know, in time, he will need me, and I'll be right there, waiting with open arms.

I settled myself on a stool by the bar where I could see him, and if he wanted to, he could see me too. I can feel Will's pain, it washes through my senses as clearly as his laughter did not so long ago. I ache to hear that laughter again, but first, I've got to hear his tears, and I know they are in there, slowly building, getting ready to fall. But I want him to know that I have a shoulder that's big enough to hold those tears, and arms to hold him tight while they fall. And love, I have enough love to get past this and beyond, if that's what he wants.

But if he doesn't, then that's okay, too. First and foremost, Will's my friend, and I'm here.

I watched his shoulders raise slightly as he listened to my thoughts, and as his head turned towards me, I had to catch the sob that rose to my throat as my eyes searched his. A solitary teardrop hung from his sooty lashes, and his chin trembled as he struggled to hold onto his grief.

It was time.

Let it go, Imzadi

Moments later as Will released his first heart-breaking sob, I was there, within his arms, doing the only thing that I could do, offering my shoulder to my friend, and my love.

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