The tears fell freely as I left his stupid driveway and sped home. I jumped out of my car and ran up the wood stairs, my feet pounding hard on the ground as I burst into my wonderful familiar home and fell into Lynn's arms. She was startled and concerned as I let my tears soak her dress as I sought every bit of comfort she could offer. John heard the commotion and came to join our watery mess. I loved them so much at that moment, so much it hurt to breath. I suppose I was hysterical, it took several minutes before I could calm down and tell them all about my horrible days. Jo's hate filled words, Ryan's actions, and finally Erick's hurtful joke. They were sympathetic and comforting through the beginning of my vent, but when I told them Erick's story, they became quiet and shared one of those darn secret glances. I knew what that meant, I was about to learn something very important. Lynn circled her arms around me and held me close as she began to speak,"Shelly, when you were given to us, well, it was unusual." She looked pleadingly at John who immediately took over,

"Lynn was practicing in the kitchen when the doorbell rang, I put down my work papers and answered the door. A strange pale man was holding a tiny baby in his arms. He didn't speak, but I knew that he wanted me to take the baby. Lynn came from the kitchen and instantly accepted the man's offer." I stared at John as he spoke, I knew for a fact that John wouldn't make something like this up. He cleared his throat and continued," the minute Lynn took the baby which was you, the man faded away. We knew that he wasn't human, but we didn't know what else he was. It was scary, but when we looked at you, we knew that we had been given a precious gift from someone very powerful and we knew it was our job to take care of you." What did this mean? I looked tearfully at Lynn. She smiled gently and gave me a squeeze,

"Shelly, I know you are scared and everything has been a shock. This Erick boy seems to know more about the situation then any of us do, tomorrow we will have to have him over and we will work this mess out." I shakily smiled at Lynn and she smiled firmly back, it was wonderful to know I wasn't alone. "now, we aren't going to do a single thing about it tonight, go and take a nice warm bath and then into bed. I don't think school is a good idea for tomorrow, so don't set your alarm alright?" I nodded and went upstairs to my room. I felt so calm as I eased into the soothing tub water. My cry had left me tired and relaxed, so relaxed that I had to keep my bath short for fear of falling asleep in the water and drowning. My bed felt like heaven as I slipped into my dreams. I was truly thankful for sleep.

It wasn't long, or it didn't seem long until my visitor arrived at the foot of my bed. He came every night without fail so why should this night have been any different? It was different this night because I knew who was sitting at the foot of my bed. For the first time in sixteen years, I opened my eyes and left my sleep. My visitor did not look at all surprised as I sat up to study him clearly. I was the one surprised at what I saw. He was a tall and sturdy built man that looked as if he could be in his early twenties, but something told me he was much much older. His skin was white like mine, but lacked that crazy glitter thing mine seemed to be in the habit of doing. His skin was creamy and smooth, it was so smooth that I felt as if my fingers would pass through it should I have dared to touch him. His steady blue eyes watched me as I took in his long hair which was so black it had a blue sheen. His clothes were made of a cloth I had never seen before, it made me feel like I was under water. He smiled pleasantly at me but didn't speak.

"Excuse me", my voice was scratchy with sleep,"are you a Life?" He nodded fluidly, but didn't speak. "That's what I thought. So who are you?" I had a theory, but I wasn't going to voice it until it was proven. The Life didn't say anything, but motioned his hand to my dresser. I had laid the mint sprigs on top of it before I had taken my bath. I sighed and crawled out of my comfy sheets and walked to the dresser. I jammed the abused minty leaves into my ears and turned, ready to hear and explanation. The Life stood up and began to speak,

" yes," his voice was smooth and soothing like running water," I am a Life, my name Uriah. I am so happy to be able to speak to you. I am the Life that left you in the care of your human parents." I liked him very much, his eyes were kind and comforting like Lynn's. I gave him a little mock bow,

"Then I have a great deal to thank you for." He grinned in delight at my little humorous action, but the grin was a little sad.

"I have enjoyed watching you grow these past sixteen years little one." I wrinkled my nose,

"Little? Aw come on! I'm considered a young woman among normal people." he let out a small chuckle, but grew serious as he approached the subject I could tell he was trying to lead up to.

"You were informed of your heritage am I correct." I felt a stab of guilt as I thought about how I had treated Erick for apparently telling me the truth. I looked at my fuzzy slipper toes and muttered a yes. I should have known Erick would never lie to me! Didn't I know him better then that? Maybe I didn't know Erick's past or his itsy bitsy details, but I did know his character. Uriah seemed to understand my reaction because he walked to me and placed his cool creamy hand on my cheek. "He will understand, he knew that your belief would come in time." I put my glittery hand on his cream one and felt comforted. Then a thought came to my mind,"Uriah, if my mother had not done what she did, you would be my father wouldn't you?" Uriah's face was sad, but he still smiled a clean white smile,

"Yes, and I think of you as my daughter." I grinned at him,

"So what happens now?" He moved to my window. His watery cloak and bare feet seemed to ripple in the wind issuing in from the opening in the glass.

"I go back to the Shadow."

"What!" he laughed at my aggravated voice, "Well I am only allowed a few minutes in this world without giving up my essence of being a Life and I very much don't want to be human." The worried expression on my face must have been amusing because his smile became a grin,"don't worry, your friend is coming tomorrow, you will be taken care of." I started to protest, but his outline began to ripple and he faded away. The moon and starlight glittered on my skin as I moved to shut out the light and try to get a decent nights sleep. It had been the most unusual of days.

At about ten in the morning there was a knock on our door. I was dressed in sweats and a random t-shirt enjoying my breakfast when I heard the firm bang. My stomach did a twist because I knew Erick was behind my front door. I started to feel self-conscious as I motioned for Lynn and John to sit down while I answered the door. I undid the latch took a deep breath and opened it wide. Erick was leaning in the door way with his regular stone expression.

Even though it was a cold spring day outside, he wasn't wearing any kind of jacket. His long brown pants hung lightly from his hips while his loose green button down shirt was teased as a brush of wind brought him in the door. I shut the door behind him and turned to face my friend. "Erick, I um", I didn't think it would be so hard or that I would feel so bad for yelling at him. I licked my lips and tried to continue, but Erick put his brown hands on my shoulders and nodded. With a sigh of relief, I knew I was forgiven. I was so relieved that I leaned forward and pressed my face into his shoulder. I hadn't realized how much it meant to me to be on good terms with this guy. He let me stay that way until we heard a cough from behind. John and Lynn were very much prepared to learn what was to become of me, but in that moment, I hadn't cared at all about my future.

I led Erick to the living room and wearily offered him a seat. He refused to sit until Lynn was comfortable. I suppose that was polite if not old fashioned. John stared at Erick with a slight frown,

"Well young man, I would like to hear all the facts." Erick nodded slowly, but instead of speaking, he pulled out a small bag. He reached in and produced a handful of minty leaves. Lynn and John looked confused, but it was old hat to me. I patiently jammed the new earwax free plants into my waiting ears and told my adoptive parents to do the same. John looked perplexed, but Lynn looked slightly amused. After their leaves were placed, Erick began to speak. All he said was some sort of greeting, but it sent me into a rush of emotion. I felt like I was lying in new baby grass as his voice cushioned my worries. Luckily this unusual sensation only lasted a few moments and then I was able to listen properly. Erick seemed to realize that we all needed a few moments of getting used to his voice and didn't say anything particularly important and just chatted pleasantly with John who strangely enough couldn't care less about what Erick sounded like. Finally it was time to get down to business. He looked at me carefully as he began,

"Uriah came to me last night and informed me that you were ready to continue with finding yourself." I nodded mutely and he continued," Because you are now sixteen and are a full Life you must..."

"Wait! You mean I'm not human anymore?" Erick looked irritated at this outburst but answered my question.

"Well not technically no."

"So then I still am part human right?"

"No."

"What? Then you lied!"

"No I didn't!"

"oh yes you did! I'm either all Life or I'm not!

"Would you just listen to me!" I leaned back contently and motioned for him to continue. He sighed in an exasperated kind of way and then pressed on.

"You are full Life, but you appear human because you have not fully accepted it. It will take time in both this world and in the invisible barrier before all can be resolved." I felt a rush of excitement. I was going to an invisible world! Oh I couldn't WAIT to tell Megan! Then I realized I couldn't. How could I tell anyone about this? Erick must have recognized my sudden sadness because he put his hand on my shoulder and I felt warm comfort. John coughed at the action and I remembered my parents were in the room, not that it mattered that they be there when I had a friend over. Erick focused his attention on John and Lynn and directed his next comments to them.

"this will be a very hard time for Shelly and for you as well. As time presses on and Shelly learns the intricate details that have been hidden, she will be forced to make a very important decision." I hung my head, I knew what that decision was before Erick parted his lips to voice it.

"She will have to decide in which world to remain forever." surprisingly I was not nearly upset by this fact as Lynn was, she seemed utterly distraught, but tried to put on a very brave face. John put his arm around her and I run over and did the same. Erick remained politely on the couch and observed our display of affection with a reserved curiosity and sympathy. Erick sat like a stone and watched Lynn sob, I watched too. I felt empty of everything. Have you ever been so emotionally drained that you just couldn't bring yourself to feel anything more? It can be tragically relaxing. I was watching Lynn and not feeling a thing in my heart. I could tell it was going to be a very long morning.

I was absolutely right. It was extremely long. It was full of tears and more stress then I had cared to handle. Lynn did not like the whole decision thing and John didn't like the whole Lynn being upset thing, and I didn't like the whole experiment thing I was going to have to do with Erick. Yes, the experiment thingy. Erick explained that for the time being, I would have to maintain a normal schedule so that no one would be suspicious, even though I pointed out that it was almost too late by this time. I also had to meet with him everyday after school where I would learn the culture and other random facts about this whole new world I was about to be introduced too. It wasn't that it didn't sound interesting or very cool, it was that spending all that time with Erick didn't really appeal to me. Okay, it sort of did, but at the same time it didn't. I know I had been forgiven for my outburst, but at the same time, that incident had created some new type of awkwardness between us.

Erick had left us by the afternoon. I think he thought it was all a little too much and frankly it was. It's hard to believe that just a few days ago I was worried about not changing at all and now here I was, going through more changes then any sixteen year old girl should ever be allowed to experience. It was late at night and for the first time in my life I didn't feel like sleeping. Instead I leaned my hand in my chin and placed my elbow on the cold window sill. It was one of those really clear nights that was free of humidity and the fireflies were pretending to be Christmas tree lights.

Erick had said that when a Life dies, it becomes what it governs. My mother must have become a star. I looked at the sky. The stars were bright because there was no moon. Uriah must have felt so upset when she chose a human over him. It upset me! My real dad didn't sound like much of a winner and Uriah seemed to be the pinicale of amazing guys, and I didn't really understand this giving your heart away. People fall in love all the time don't they? And then they found out it wasn't right. Divorce was on the rampage. I thought of John and Lynn, they seemed to be in love for real. Maybe I was just tired, but I wasn't. I stayed up all night. I watched the dew form on the grass and the sun rise slowly into the sky. I was awake when Lynn came into my room to tell me to get ready for school. I got ready and still didn't feel very tired at all.

I was completely coherent as I drove to school and even forced myself to pretend I wasn't morphing into some phsyco elf chick. Megan greeted me in the parking lot. She was way excited about her up coming soccer game. I was too. It was during school and that meant missing history and the rest of the classes afterwards!

"Megan, I'm going to be cheering so loud that you will be stinkin' embarrassed to know me!"

"I'm already embarrassed to know you." I threw my hands up in mock horror.

"oh my dear lady! Why don't you just drive a stake through my heart!" I heard a loud voice answer that wasn't Megan's

"Yeah Megan why don' you? That's how you kill shallow vampires!" Megan cringed and looked at me. I didn't react in what I suppose would be the normal fashion, I spun around and gave Jo a wide grin.

"Jo! How are you today? Glad to see you!" she gave me the finger and caught up with some of her goth friends that she refused to introduce me to when we were friends for fear they would harm me, due to my incredibly upbeat attitude. Megan looked at me in such a thoughtful way that I asked her what was on her mind.

"Well", she spoke as if it was more to herself then to me," It's just I don't really understand why Jo flew off the handle like she did." I rolled my eyes,

"It's because I changed Meg."

"No I don't think so Shells." I stopped walking and shifted my books to a more comfortably position.

"Why?"

"Because you changed big time after freshman year and she didn't have a mental case about it." That caught my curiosity.

"What do you mean?" Megan smiled sheepishly at me.

"Well you know, I mean, well you know how you weren't exactly the most attractive person in the world." I groaned, I knew it all too well. I was the ultimate plain Jane with a face that was never to shy to host a few pimples.

"Do we really have to visit that particular place in yesteryears?" Megan ignored my comment and continued,

"so then that summer, you and your parents disappear to Europe for a few months and you come back as this refined beautiful lady." I snorted at this comment.

"The only thing that changed was that I became zit free." Megan shook her head.

"No you were different, you weren't all that shy anymore and you didn't really let people push you around. And boys started to like you." I rolled my eyes for the second time that day. "anyway, what I'm saying is that Jo didn't care that you were pretty and starting to get attention. She must be mad about something else."

"Like what?" Megan pushed the door open and shrugged as she tried to adjust her eyes to the dull florescent lighting.

"I really don't know Shells, but her whole attitude is weird." I brushed off Megan's suspicion and went down the opposite hall to my English class. Even though I couldn't think of a single negative thing I had done to Jo, my mind continued to dwell on Megan's rough theory instead of whether Hamlet was truly insane or if he was faking it.

It was a good hot day for Megan's soccer game. The school let out and us high school students were carefully escorted onto the field. The whole getting out of class thing was very cool. Normally, soccer games were held after school but the opposing team had some sort of cow about not being able to get home until late so yea, instant class let out.

It wasn't until I had reached the bleachers that I realized I had no one to sit with. Megan was playing, Jo hated my guts, Andy was absent, and I didn't see Erick anywhere. Well great. It was then that I spotted Sasha in the crowd with her heavily bracelet covered hand waving madly in my direction. I smiled and fought my way to her. When I lost sight of her, all I had to do was follow the sound of clinking expensive jewelery. I caught up to Sasha as she reached the hot bleachers. She linked her elbow in mine and we made our way to an empty seat. We were soon joined by the many followers of Sasha, this included Ryan and Peter. I managed to artfully ignore them both and soon found myself throughly enjoying the soccer game.

Even though I am a complete idiot at playing sports, I love watching. I tend to get very excited and end up being one of those obnoxious people who scream their heads off every time some sort of action is performed. I was in mid yell when Ryan decided to make things very awkward.

"WHAT! Come ON!! You can do it Megan! Just fetching' rip her legs off and she can't steal it from you again!" He squeezed in between me and Sasha and left very little room for my hips. I was very tempted to inform him that my big birthing hips wouldn't allow one more butt on this bench, but being the kind person I am, I let it slid and acted as though I couldn't care less where he sat. Unfortunately, he put his arm around my back and pulled me into his shoulder where he started whispering in my ear.

"Shelly, why don't you leave that weird drama kid and be with me?" I blanked out at this phrase because I didn't know any drama kids, but his last few words made a great deal of sense to me. I pushed away from him, causing Peter to fly off the end of the bench.

"Because I don't like you." Ryan's smile faltered but he keep it in place. I could tell he was embarrassed because everyone we were sitting with had decided my battle with Ryan was far more interesting then the people kicking a ball back and forth. Ryan leaned forward in a slightly threatening way,

"But you could like me, if we gave it a try." I glared at him in such a frosty manner I thought winter had come.

"No, I don't think so." Ryan started to look upset for real. He opened his mouth to say something else, but Peter cut him off from his new found seat on the floor.

"Come on Harris! Girl's not into you!" Ryan really did look angry now. He got his butt off the bench and went to stand menacingly in front of Peter's unusual seat.

"Stay out of it."

"No, don't think I will." Ryan sneered. It completely ruined what would have been a beautiful face.

"Why, cause you think you'd have a chance? Like a classy chick like Shelly would let some black ghetto boy in her bed. Why don't you let her have some action with a boy in her own league" Peter's normally easy-going personality seemed to take a backseat.

"I don't care what you say about me, red-neck trash, but don't talk about her like she's some slut." Ryan could see that he was getting under Peter's skin, he sure was getting under mine. I felt a strange tingle at my fingertips and gently stood up. The world became so much slower, or I became much faster, but in less then the smallest amount of time recorded, I was standing behind Peter with my eyes on Ryan's eyes. I stared at him with wide open eyes and ran one glittering finger down his cheek. I watched fascinated as Ryan's eye lids drooped and his jaw became slack. For a minute I thought he was going to throw up, but instead Ryan slumped to the floor in a trance and started drooling on Peter's shoes. The world sped up again.

"What the crap are you doing Harris! Get up so I can rip your limbs off!" Sasha laughed at Ryan's obserd position.

"Leave him alone Peter, he's stoned or something. Shelly I don't think you should go out with him though, Shelly? How did you get over there?"

" GO MEGAN!! Oh my gosh they won!" I was screaming in joy but my heart was panicking. I glanced at Ryan out of the corner of my eye. I had a feeling that I had just done something very very wrong. People were starting to crowd around him in concern. It just wasn't right the way Ryan lay on the ground in a fetal position. His eyes were wide and had a white ring around the pupils. I could feel myself grow cold with dread. Did I just kill him? I needed Erick. He would know what to do. Almost as if he had heard my thoughts, there he was, my weird little jedi master. No one really noticed him, but me, Erick doesn't really stand out unless he wants to. I watched in fascination as Erick's stone eyes turned green and a ring of white began to form around his own pupils. As that happened, the white in Ryan's eyes left and they closed. His breathing became heavy and he stretched.

Everyone seemed relieved, me most of all. I turned to grin at Erick, but he was not grinning back. He looked really mad. My shout for joy got chocked in the back of my throat and I let out a cough. I decided to escape. No one likes and angry Life thingy, or what every the heck he is, or that's what my gut told me. I jumped off the bleachers and ran for Megan who was being tackled by her entire team.

I didn't want to see Erick standing by my car. Perhaps that is why I dawdled so long with Megan and Peter, but you can only talk about a single soccer game for so long before you are just weird, so I walked to my car. I could see Erick's figure leaning coolly against its frame. I started shaking, I really didn't want to face him. Then I thought about how stupid I was acting. Maybe I had done something wrong, but I could I have known? I was new at this! He should be a little bit more patient with me. I thrust my nose into the air and walked with confidence. When I reached my car, Erick did not look at me. He waited for me to unlock the door and then he slid in without any sort of invitation for kindness. My new found courage faltered for a moment, but I threw the car into drive and survived the trip to his house. I was fully prepared to leave, but as I was about to pull away, Erick stood in the front of my car with his foot on the hood. He cocked his eyebrow. I sighed, apparently my little experiment wasn't going to change the fact that we had to have our lesson. I pulled the car into park and tentively climbed out.

He turned and walked to the back of the house without even waiting for me to catch up. I broke into a small sprint to reach him. I was confused, usually his body language could tell me everything, his thoughts, his words, but it was like we suddenly had this barrier and I really really didn't like it at all! I felt tears prick my eyes, oh great. I was getting all hormonal. That's really just what I needed. I felt so empty for some reason. We finally reached that familiar patch of grass. He threw some mint leaves at me and turned his back to me, waiting until I had put them in. I just sat there. I looked at the little leaves and felt my vision blur. I didn't know what happened to Ryan, I was scared, and Erick was mad. I crushed the leaves in my fist and clasped my hands together. I brought my folded fingers to my forehead and sat as if I was in prayer. I heard Erick turn around and I felt his eyes on me. What I was not prepared for was his voice.

"Shelly what were you thinking? Do you even understand what could have happened?" I was enraptured. I felt possessed. I couldn't look up, I couldn't look down. I could barely even breath. His voice was so beautiful. I had never heard such a magnificent sound in all my existence. He continued to lecture me. I heard his words, but ignored them. I was too in love with the sound of his voice. I began to shiver with the very vibrations I could feel radiating in the air. My spin tingled with his deep voice. I finally gained enough control to look up.

Erick was covering his face in one of his brown hands while he told me how irresponsible I had been. I felt my eyes widen and then I really lost control. He was glowing, he was inviting, he was tantalizing, and I had to have him. I shifted my weight and slowly began to stand up. Erick heard the change in the ground and finally looked at me

"Are you even listening to me? What are you...?" His beautiful gray green eyes were wide on me as I approached him with my body in desperation for his. Erick looked throughly confused. The closer I got the more he would back away. He seemed to realize that something was very wrong, then he made a huge mistake. Erick reached out his arms and grasped my shoulders, then put his wonderfully soft hand to my face and said my name softly "Shelly." And then, I attacked.

He was totally taken by surprise when he found my mouth pressed on his and my hands digging themselves into his back. I felt strong and not in complete control of my instincts. My heart was racing and my mind was on fire, but I wanted more. I wanted him and he wasn't returning anything. I was kissing him quite throughly, but he was not responding. Instead he was trying to push me off, but I wasn't about to let him. Or at least, I thought so, but Erick was still much stronger then me and he managed to push me away. He looked scared, especially when he looked down and saw that my hands held the mint leaves. He opened his mouth to say something and immediately shut it. I was breathing heavily, but as the wind began to sweep away the haunting vibrations of his vocal talent I began to calm down. Instead of lashing out to claim him like a wild tiger, I stood there trembling in want, but in much more control then I had had. My mind began to cool and Erick slowly let go of me. When i didn't attack him again, he seemed to figure that I was recovering.

A few minutes later I started to feel like myself again. And with that, I began to feel completely horrified. I had just violently kissed my best friend on the mouth and had fully intended to do much more then that. When Erick saw my face drain and my eyes overcome with fear, he sighed in relief, and then he himself put the leaves in my ears.

"Shelly, are you there?" I was relieved to discover that he sounded normal. I stared at him in horror,

"Erick I'm really, I don't know, I'm so sorry." He waved his hand as if to shoo away a fly.

"Don't worry about it, happens all the time." I gave a tiny smile and felt better, and then I didn't.

"What do you mean all the time?!" Erick looked at me warily and looked as if he was about to be very careful with his words.

"Shelly, that's just what happens when humans hear a Life speak. They go crazy, at least ones after puberty do." That made sense to me, but I couldn't help but wonder.

"So how many times has it happened to you?" He gave me a warning look.

"Shelly..."

"Erick..." We glared at each other for a while before he brushed it off.

"I'll tell you at the end of our meeting." I was fairly satisfied with that explanation. "So Master, what are you going to teach your young padawan today?" He ignored me but sat across from me.

"Well first, I must explain what you did to Ryan." I couldn't help but cringe, but it did seem that he wasn't angry anymore. I guess the whole ,Shelly just kissed me and I feel bad about it, helped to cool his temper. I sat patiently and waited.

"When you touched that boy in the way you did, you infused him with part of your being. If I had let him be, he would have eventually transformed into a Life." I looked at him, but didn't really know how I was supposed react. What was so bad about that? I mean, sure people would get bent out of shape if the woke up and became something that wasn't human, but I didn't see why Erick got so upset. He must have realized my attitude because he went on to explain it a little bit more. "That happens sometimes and they tend to be happy, but you did it in rage, that was killing him. A transformation must be done willingly and in love. This goes for everything even you. If we forced you to become Life, you would die." I felt my stomach drop, so I had almost committed murder! Those tears started to prick, but I wasn't going to let them fall. I am not a bad person. I hadn't intended such a thing, and Ryan was alive. I refused to hate myself.

With this new found resolution I looked up at Erick. He was watching me with an approving smile.

"I knew you were strong." I smiled back.

I stayed in the woods with Erick for hours picking up where we left off. It's hard to believe that the Life had so many customs that are similar to our own. Edict was basically the same and so were celebrations of most holidays. The had Christmas, Hanuka, Easter, passover, and a weird form of Thanksgiving. What I found most interesting was how they lived. Their family life was so strange and their marriage was way weird. When partners found each other, they didn't exactly live together unless they were of the same element. I was way confused by that because how can you really be happy if you aren't together. That's when Erick said something very interesting.

"They are happy because they have the heart of they one they love." that just didn't make sense to me at all. I mean so what? So you love each other, but that just isn't enough for a relationship! Every time I tried to get Erick to explain it more he would cough and continue to explain how the government was splint into many different societies based on elemental issues. That wasn't nearly as interesting to me. So that's why when Uriah arrived in my room like a gentle wave of the ocean I basically pounced.

"I have a question!" He seemed slightly surprised, but amused. I put the mint leaves in my ears and waited while he eased himself next to me on my bed .

"What is your question?" I swung my feet back and forth and looked into his face. Uriah was beautiful, he was kind and he dear to me. He in my mind was my father. A day ago I would have resented this statement and clung to John loyally, but something had changed, I felt it.

"Uriah, what exactly does it mean to give your heart to someone?" Uriah smiled that sad smile at me and put his hand on my back. He stared out my window for a good while before he seemed to be ready to speak.

"to give your heart away, is a physical action, and quite literal. When you do this, you are bound to that person mentally. You can hear them in your mind even after they are gone, because, no one is ever really gone forever. Once you do that, you can't fall out of love, you come to know exactly who that person is and they will always hold your affections. It can only be given not taken" I looked up at him. I was still confused.

"So, how do you do it? You can't live without a vital organ." He looked down at me in amusement.

"The heart I speak of is different. When you find your companion, you place your hands over your heart and draw it out." Then Uriah did an astonishing thing. He placed his hands over his heart and closed his eyes. I watched in fascination as he slowly drew them away, but they did not go away alone. What was followed was a small blue light that danced in between his fingers. It was Uriah, I knew it was. It was his thoughts, his feelings and his love. He pressed it close to his chest and it eased it's way home. He turned to me and spoke.

"when you love someone, you want to give them everything, but you can't. The most you can do is care for them and respect them and trust them and love them. This exchange of heart is one way to do that."

"Can I do that?" Uriah shook his head.

"you haven't become yourself yet, humans cannot do that." That was interesting news. But is also invoked a rather awkward question. I looked up at Uriah, but I didn't dare ask him. He answered it anyway.

"your mother gave her heart to a human man, but he cannot posses it as a Life could. She put in a silver ring that was his wedding ring. When he wore that ring, she could feel him just enough to be happy, but he would never feel her. Her deception and that was what probably caused him to reject her in the end." I sat for a moment, it seemed that my parental life was full of tragically. There was something I did know however. I had felt my mother all my life, because she is in my blood. I took Uriah's hand,

"What was her name?" Uriah's voice caught as he spoke.

"Her name is Dancia. She was my best friend, and it is my fault." I squeezed Uriah's hand and he placed his on mine. "Dancia was so beautiful. We grew up together, for two-hundred years we were friends. We did so much with each other. I knew she was my love before she did. I didn't tell her, I wanted her to come to the realization on her own." He tucked my head under his chin and ran his fingers through my white hair. "She watched over a human baby. She cared for him out of pity because of his hard life. Dancia was compassionate. I never worried much until the boy became a man. I became jealous and afraid. I became possessive and moody. One day I hurt her terribly and we did not speak for ten years. I was too full of pride to come to her and she was afraid to come to me. In an action to find comfort she went to the human man. And she found it." Uriah let out a sigh, "I should have stopped her, but I didn't. Then it was too late. All I could do was try to fix everything I could." As I watched Uriah stare into his past with misted eyes, I reflected on my new found knowledge. I think I preferred the human way of love, where there was mystery and others. If someone left you, move on! Find a new girl! But for Uriah and others of his kind, there was no other girl, and there never would be. We spent the rest of the night together, just comforting each other and caring. That's all you can do when you love someone.