Prologue

- - -

Pencil and paper in hand,
writing about how much I
hate writing about you. But
I write about you breaking
my heart. It makes for
such a good story line.
But not all stories have a happy ending.

- - -

To say they were a beautiful and perfect couple would be an understatement. It was as if there was long, stretchable chain that locked their hearts together. No matter how far away they were from each other, they always seemed linked. When they were together, their eyes spelt out the word "love". It was as if they lived in the spine of a fairy tale book. Of course, they had their problems and arguments from time to time, but through it all, they still seemed like the perfect couple that the old ladies adored and the teenage girls envied.

But not all fairy tales have their happy ending, do they? You're thinking, yes they do. Not this one.

They started way back in high school, these two. Tenth grade, to be exact. You could say it was love at first sight. Or if you don't believe in love at first sight, it was definitely something at first sight. It grew from there. From talking, to becoming friends, to flirting, to dating, and finally, to falling deeply in love. At the beginning, the feelings they had for each other were hidden as if it were dangerous for them to be exposed. It was so obvious to everyone around them, yet no one dared to bring it up.

It was a Friday night when Hisham finally decided it was the right time to tell her. They were sitting at her house watching a movie – a horror movie to be exact – with his arms around her. It felt so right, him holding her and her being in his arms.
"Hala," Hisham began, shifting so he could look her in the eyes.
Hala reluctantly slid out of his arms to face him. "Yeah?"

"I think I'm in love with this girl," he told her.
"Oh," she felt her heart drop to her stomach as her thoughts told her negative. "Um, does she know?"

"No."

"Well, why don't you tell her?"

"Because. What if she doesn't feel the same way?"

"You'll never know."

"I don't know what to do."

"Just follow your heart."

"What do you think my heart says?" he asked.

"I don't know. I'm not in your heart."

He gazed into her eyes. "You're most of it."

From that moment on, not one being in the world could tear them apart. They dated for five years in which they finished high school and began college. On their five year anniversary, during their second year of college, he proposed to her, telling her he wanted to spend the rest of his life with her and only her. He wanted to get married and start a family with her and grow old with her. She happily agreed.

Four months later, they were married. They spent the rest of that year getting settled. They bought a house, furnished it, both found a job, and continued their schooling.

Another six years passed and they had started a family. A three year old boy and a one year old girl would sit with their parents, whom still loved each other unconditionally, as they told them their love story.

It was the day Hala's best friend, Huda, finished school in California and moved back to Ottawa, when everything started to go wrong. It began with occasional flirting between Hisham and Huda, then the relationship grew. They were closer than Hala and Huda had ever been and trusted each other with all they had. Hala noticed this but kept her worries to herself, not wanting to ruin her friendship or her marriage.

The day after their daughter's first birthday, everything in her world came crashing to the ground.