Once upon a time, a girl fell in love.

She was a quiet girl. She didn’t say much to people outside her circle of friends, and wasn’t good at speaking with strangers. She hadn’t particularly “liked” anyone throughout most of her elementary and middle school days, unlike the people around her who were constantly changing their minds. Some of the people she saw could go through four boyfriends in a few months.

No, no, her love was different.

She would watch him from afar with awe, hoping one day he would notice her. They had talked before, quite a few times, but to her it seemed like a one sided love. He’d go back to what he was doing, not looking at any other girls, but concentrating. He was too mysterious to read, too mysterious to understand. Would she ever know how he felt about her?

When he smiled, she wondered if he let his guard down at all. It did not seem so.

Perhaps I am the problem.

She told her friends about how she felt. One of them didn’t seem to understand, trying her best to hide that she was looking at him shallowly. But that girl knew, and it hurt. She consulted her other friend, one who was much more understanding and careful with her feelings. The kind friend told her to talk to him more. But it wasn’t so easy!

I can’t do it, I can’t do it...

Weeks had passed since she had first met him, and her feelings continued to grow. They grew so much, it was difficult to think properly and sleep with a clear conscience. Her lips became redder as she chewed at them nervously. They stung, reminding her of not only the love that was overflowing from inside her, but the pain. Every day, it became harder and harder to say her mind. She wished more than anything she could.

Why can’t I do this? I want to, I want to...! It’s not fair...

Her eyes would trail to him whenever she could catch a glance. He got cooler, and she... she got smaller. More scared. She felt her feelings would always stay locked in her heart. They pounded to break free. Could she let them out, could she? The wings wanted to fly, but she would always pluck the feathers away when they grew. Her confidence was already dangerously low. Still, she did not tell anyone. She lost her trust.

Even now, she looks at him and wonders. His expression... will it change?

Would time run out? Was time running out? Any day, any moment, he could be snatched away. He could be stolen by another. She didn’t want to see him go, didn’t want to see him with another person. That girl was being selfish. She knew it, but still her eyes would tear up at the thought of him being happy. She wanted his happiness. But she wanted to achieve it as well.

She turned bashfully to him one more time, and opened up her mouth to say something.

Do they live happily ever after?