The Final Letter
I wish I could say that I had seen this coming. That I had the self-awareness, the self-preservation, to warn me of this end. To shield me from this pain.
But there was no shield. The loss of you was a dagger pulled from my flesh—swift and harsh and honest. Like an animal torn free from a snare, my days are consumed with staunching my wounds in quiet solitude. Our garden shed is gone—burned to ash—but perhaps you knew this. Regardless, I have found refuge and I am healing.
I did not see the poison you were to me until I’d been infected beyond reasoning. Perhaps it was not always poison—the feelings we shared for each other. As children, there was a purity and honesty between us that felt like home. I cannot say the same of our later years. But the change was so gradual, the doses of poison so small, that I could not see the truth before it was upon me.
Perhaps, I’d have never known how to purge myself of it—of you—if not for your absolute rejection. Strange, how I find myself bitterly grateful for your choice to turn me away, like a lady dismissing a servant. That was how I knew that we were not to be. Not because I believe our titles were enough to ever keep us apart. But you refused to see past them, and we both deserve better than the walls that would place around us. I deserve better than to be a piece in whatever grand game you believe to be playing. I deserve better than who you have allowed yourself to become.
If I have my way, you will never see my face again. Perhaps you are past the point of caring about me or what we were to each other. Perhaps you will scoff at this letter and see it as yet another reason I am not worthy of you. But I did not write this for you, or for your judgement. This letter was written for me, and now that it is done, I am free to step forward into a new life. I am not quite sure who I am without you, Orla. But I trust that, in time, I will come home to myself again.
In honesty, I pray you can do the same. I pray that, someday, you will see yourself as you are, outside of the walls of court or the judgements of your mother or all the pressures you’ve placed upon yourself. I pray that your pride and your fear will become secondary to the kindness and love I once knew to be in your heart.
Farewell for good.
Your childhood friend and nothing more,
Gray Stone Bay