It had long been time to sleep if it were going to take me. The moon was illuminating light from high in the sky and even the stars shined bright encouraging the non-nocturnals to sleep. They whispered that everything was okay and there was no need to be on guard. It was perfect, even the nocturnals were quiet tonight, for once, hoping to give even the lightest of sleepers at least this night to peacefully rest. Yes, it was a silent night and the only thing to be heard was the soft even breathing of the person sleeping next to me.

I watched his still form save for the rise and fall of his chest. I watched the way the shadows, cast by the light of the moon, played across his face. I examined the contours of his face, which were relaxed in a way that it hadn’t been for a while almost as if he were dead. The at ease look on his face caused a heavy sadness in my heart that I couldn’t shake.

It was my fault, I knew that, but as much as I wish I could save him from the pain, suspicion, and doubt they were all byproducts of my being here. I’m not so naive as to think any of that would change in my absence. The decision weighed on me incessantly, more and more every day, and I was determined to do the right thing. I wasn’t so weak as to simply cave in because the pain tearing at my heart, I could get through anything if I needed to, but I wasn’t so strong as to be able to stand aside turning a blind eye to the suffering of someone I love.

Sadly to say it wasn’t really supposed to be like this. I didn’t even see myself getting into a situation like this, I knew better, but somewhere along the way I’d allowed myself to get comfortable and complacent. Now I find myself not wanting to let go although with things the way they are that would seem to be the best option. I’d always caused hurt in my wake for others but I never cared, telling myself it was all a means to an end, until now.

There was always a limit ticking away over our heads from the beginning and since then I’ve had a niggling feeling that it would come to this. All along I’d known yet still I let myself settle with being here for a while because of my own selfish reasons and here I am, yet again, doing something selfish.

Here he laid in front of me like an Adonis blissfully in his dreams and unaware of the rest of the world. A deep ache tore through my heart at the thought of leaving and I embraced it allowing it to totally consume me. This would just be something else I’d lost along the way. I know he’d be angry and hate me, for a while at least, but maybe I could make him see later that it was worth it in the end. There has always been an inevitable end here but I have never had the courage to tell him that.

He was now another one of the people that I’d never meant to see harm come to but were hurt because of me. Just like all those other times I hope that there was some other way because I didn’t want to leave. But how could I stay?

The people around me for too long, sooner or later, seemed to suffer staying with me so I couldn’t afford to stop now. I was a toxic poison to others and couldn’t – shouldn’t – be trusted not to bring about the downfall of all those I’ve ever cared for.

I hadn’t been able to leave before but perhaps now he’ll be able to let me go easier; the last thing I needed was for him to come chasing after me. I cared too much to continue watching passively and being selfish knowing my involvement with him could very well be his downfall.

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