Here's the very last chapter. Enjoy!

April 25, 2012

"We need a break," I told Kat calmly, trying my best not to cry.

"Why? I'm not very stable at the moment, we both know that, but I can change for you! I love you too much to let go!" Kat pleaded. No you don't, I thought. It was clear that she was exaggerating for my sake.

"This is exactly why we need a break. I make you uncomfortable with my physical closeness, and you scare me with your instability. And I can't help but think that I'm a source of your instability." Tears began to fill her eyes, and she looked away. "We'll still be able to see each other at school and text if anything urgent happens, but I want a three week break between us. That way, I won't be able to touch you, and you'll have some time to fix yourself without any of my stressful influence."

Lately, Kat had become more and more unstable, often having violent outbursts followed by spells of crying. She claimed that it hurt like being stabbed whenever I touched her. As much as I worried and cared about her, I couldn't help but notice that she seemed most unhappy when I was around. I wanted her to be okay, and this seemed like the best way to make sure of this. Plus, I needed some time to sort out my own issues. Time would be the best medicine for all of us.

"It's not the touching," Kat sobbed.

"Then what is it?" I asked, throwing up a cold front to lock myself out of her weepy state.

"Well, I guess it is," she corrected, "but it's not really that. Sure, it hurts me. I don't even know why. But mostly, it just feels weird to have something that isn't me touch me. I hate it." She paused. "And, well, you like me as more than a friend. So it's just awkward when you touch me. We both know what you mean by it when you do."

"So, basically, you're saying that this is completely my fault? That the reason that you don't want to touch anyone is because I told you how I felt about you?" I asked, beginning to get angry.

She nodded.

"So you wish I hadn't told you that I loved you?" I shouted. "Well, do you remember who pried it out of me? Do you?"

"I did," she cried, "but I guess you were right. I shouldn't have asked."

"So you don't even care about how I feel? Is that it?" I seethed, "And if you hadn't asked, you do realize that I would still feel the same way about you, right? I might even have loved you more than I do now, since I wouldn't have known what a bitch you were! You wouldn't have known a thing! Tell me, would it still have been awkward?"

"No… it wouldn't have been awkward," she said softly.

"Let me get this perfectly clear," I said, now speaking in a cruel whisper, "You wish I hadn't ever told you that I liked you."

"I guess so," she stated, "and I think we can get you help for how you're feeling."

"What if I don't want help?" I asked coldly, "What if I enjoy who I am?"

"That's not what I meant…" she said, crying uncontrollably.

"Then what did you mean?"

"I don't know."

"Get out of my house," I commanded. She stared at me blankly, as if unsure whether I was being serious or not. I stared back, letting her know that she was no longer welcome here. She quickly ran down the stairs and out the door. I heard her car start and pull out of my driveway.

I saw her at school the next day, but neither of us spoke to each other. She sat at a different table at lunch. We stopped talking and texting, and she dropped out of all of the clubs that we were both in.

We never spoke again.

I had expected some other feeling besides emptiness when I left her. For so long, my entire existence had revolved around her, but now I was suddenly cut loose.

I didn't feel happy, sad, lonely, or even free. Just empty. I spent several days after school coming home and staring out my window, talking to no one, listening to no one, just staring outside and watching the grass grow.

I thought over our last conversation several times while I watched the grass, wondering how else it could have played out. I could have been less harsh, but then I would have been sucked back into her cycle of pain. This was my crude way of absconding, ripping ties apart and running away.

I could have made up with her, simply apologized and remained acquaintances. But my pride kept me in the way.

Instead, I hid from her, found a new life, and lived it to the fullest that I could.

This wasn't very full, and I would often feel something akin to a hole where the butterflies had once lived.

I had learned, though. I had learned not to say what was on my mind, to keep my thoughts to myself, surrounded by thorned armor. This was the only way to avoid any more suffering.

I had replaced happiness with emptiness.

The end…

Thanks to everyone who read and reviewed. You are so amazing, and I'm glad that this story was worth your time.

I'll give out one more call for reviews before I go.

So… please review. Also, you should read my other stories.

Good night,

~StarlessRaven~