"The scariest thing about love, is you never know who you're going to fall for. It'll be someone you never expect to. Maybe it'll be someone you knew would happen eventually, if you're some kind of psychic who can predict their own life. But regardless, love won't care about the circumstances. It won't care who it is. It could be with your cute neighbor, or it could be with the one person you shouldn't have fallen for. And it can feel awful, if your case is the latter.

I'm in love with my best friend, and that's one of the greatest mistakes any guy can make. No matter what all those encouraging sites say, no matter what those forums tell you, if it doesn't work out, and your best friend rejects you, it will be the greatest mistake you'll make. Or, if you're in a similar situation like this cowardly writer, where you don't know what the answer is going to be, and you're absolutely terrified to find out what the answer would be. Even if in the back of your mind, you know the answer already.

We're in completely different worlds, she and I, in so many ways.

She's a kind soul, who charges into things headfirst, who isn't afraid to try new things, and she'll do it with a smile on her face. She's tough, who acknowledges her faults with a pout and cold shoulder, but she will try to fix it. She isn't the brightest crayon in the box, but she will do her best in everything and anything, and she far outstrips any genius in my opinion. She's not perfect, but one smile from her, and I know she doesn't have to be to be, in order to be someone who is worth so much. Which is why her dark past confuses me. She's been hurt all her life, by people who get close to her, only to turn around and smack her in the face with her own kindness. She has a really hard time trusting people, a hard time making friends. That was especially true for her before I met her. I don't understand why people have hurt her. I don't understand why all her past boyfriends left her. She was someone who was so kind, who let herself be walked all over. And it makes me sad and furious that people would do that.

Before I met her, I was some lazy slacker. Barely passing my classes in high school, hiding in my introverted shell, and barely talking to the friends I knew I should have cherished more. I was always told I was a genius of sorts, a guy who has an insane amount of potential that he was just squandering. It showed I guess. I took national tests, and I would always score on the above-average to excellent range. I even managed to get a nearly perfect score on one of them. But I just didn't find it in me to care. I just couldn't, and I like to blame all the teen angst and the fact I was obsessed with reading to the point I spend most of my time in the library when I wasn't in class. I like to think I have a decent personality, who got along well enough with everyone, I never had a reason to look down upon anyone, since that was rude, and I helped when I could. I was someone people came to when they were distressed, since I was fine with being a listening ear and helping others when they needed it. That was me most of my high school years until my junior year of high school.

It was a cool fall day in math, somewhere at the end of October, the beginnings of November. Sometimes we'll argue about the exact date.

One day, I was far more bored then usual, since I finished the math earlier then most of the people in the class. I looked over to the other people at my table, and that's when I noticed her for the first time. It sounds stupid, to just then notice her when I've been sitting next to her all this time, but again, either buried in a book, or in my own thoughts. She was still barely halfway through the paper, stuck on one of the harder problems that had an insane amount of steps to go through. She had a really concentrated face, wrinkles on her forehead and her nose slightly scrunched up. She was frowning. And all I could do was watch. I don't know what compelled me to, but I couldn't help but watch. Creepy, I know, but for some reason, I found her incredibly captivating. I couldn't stop. When she finished, she smiled. She had braces on at the time, but that didn't matter to me. Because that's when I knew, I had to talk to her. Something drove me to talk to her. This small voice in my head practically screaming to talk to her, or I would regret it forever.

Luckily, I didn't sound dumb when I first interacted with her, and I think she was surprised I was talking to her. I wasn't a prickly guy, but I wasn't going out of my way to talk to people. I was just as surprised. The months flew by, with us getting closer together. I showed her my stories, the ones I wrote and always felt a mild amount of pride for. I showed her bits and pieces of me I was usually uncomfortable sharing. And she opened up to me. Just not a lot, not until much later, and I'll get to that later. We got fairly close, and I was pleasantly happy, since I had made a fast friend without realizing it.

She saved me, and I think I saved her too, or at least began to help her get over her past. She reached into me and pulled me out of my own laziness and self-contempt. It began with the little things, such as beginning to remind me to do my homework or making sure I was actually paying attention in class. As time went on, she helped me more by being the friend I could count on to laugh and do dumb things with, she showed me parts of her that she was always scared of showing, since they were considered "weird" and "unusual" by everyone around us. She kept nagging me and pulling me out of the hole I had made for myself, never giving up on me and making sure I didn't fall behind on any of my work. Her smile is infectious.

She told me about her past, and all the pain and tribulations she went through. A beautiful girl like her, didn't deserve to go through what she did. She felt as though no one loved her, that she didn't feel special. And I don't know where she got that notion, so I made sure she felt like the greatest treasure, because that's what she was to me. I went out of my way to compliment her or say words that had a much deeper meaning in them. I thanked her. I cherished our time together. I gave her as much love and care as she gave me, although sometimes I wonder if I gave much more then what a normal "best friend" should have given. Sometimes, the words I said weren't something a best friend should be saying.

Maybe I had feelings for her then, but I didn't realize it. We called each other our best friends, and that was the best year of my high school career, just being with her.

But then I had to move away. We knew this for a long time that I was moving, but that didn't make it any less painful. We kept in contact frequently, almost everyday. We missed each other terribly. Months passed, and I started my final year of high school. At first, I was hateful, full of pain and misery. I was determined to get back to her, no matter how long it took, through whatever means necessary. Leaving her behind sparked a blaze in me, one that I let consume me. But I met someone who helped me realized I couldn't live like that for my final year of high school. The burning fire was still there, but I didn't let it consume me. I made friends, but they weren't her. I went to prom and had a wonderful time, but it wasn't with her. I experienced many wonderful things, and I couldn't help but think they would've been better with her by my side.

In the middle of the second semester, she told me about a guy she fell for, and that she would eventually date.

I think that was the first time I realized I fell in love with her. Because when I learned about him, it hurt. It hurt so much worse then what I was expecting. It crushed my heart, and I didn't understand why. I remember her excitement, her joy, and all I could do was laugh and joke with her, telling her how wonderful it was. I was glad she couldn't see my face over the phone. When the call ended, I remember contemplating, the pain and disappointment roaring in my head, and that's when I realized that I had fallen for her.

Nearly a year later, and a thousand miles away, I realized how much she meant to me. And I was too late. She was with someone who meant a lot to her. And I couldn't do a damn thing about it. Because it would be wrong.

It would be selfish.

I contacted her less and less. I felt us drift. And I couldn't do a thing about it. Or didn't want to. I just didn't want to be hurt. But then she told me they broke up. She wasn't upset by it in the slightest, which threw me off. I wasn't used to seeing people be so chillingly acceptant of breaking up. She wasn't sad or angry, just disappointed. I would find out later why she was like that.

But we reconnected, I didn't help her get over it, since she seemed fine with it, and we left it as is.

But like anything, given enough time and distance, it eventually begins to erode.

Our friendship once again began to fade into something weaker, and it took an especially critical hit when we started college, and she once again pursued another relationship, and this truly seemed like the kind of relationship would last.

I began to accept it, and even managed to let go of my feelings, and move on to other girls, all while still maintaining a weak connection with her. Every time we talked, she seemed happy, and I was happy for her, ignoring the small pain in the heart every time she talked about her boyfriend, which wasn't often, thankfully enough. She had finally found someone that would treat her right, I remember thinking. And I could content myself with what we had, a paradoxical weak and strong best friendship.

But that changed when winter break came around, and she mentioned the troubles she had with her boyfriend. I slipped into my role as the one who helps others and listened to her. She told me about her problems, and I offered advice, even if there was something screaming at the back of my head to not do it. She mentioned how she missed me, and I felt mildly guilty, since I knew I had been contacting her less and less because of her boyfriend and felt no need to contact her as frequently. Well, a want to contact her frequently, but that was besides the point. I made a promise to myself to at least talk to her a little more often, which I accomplished. The friendship once again picked up pace, and she reminded me of our happy trust that we had.

Except one day, I finally found out how much she had been keeping from me.

She had broken up with him, and it seemed as though she was fine, but when I asked about her emotional state, three weeks after the breakup. she finally came crumbling down. She revealed all her sadness, all her heart break, all her confusion and low self-esteem. She had been in such a perpetual state for three weeks, and when she mentioned she had been crying in her sleep, that was the tipping point for me.

I felt something snap in me, and I yelled at her for keeping this from me. I was frustrated. She called me her best friend, and yet she didn't have the confidence to tell me all her suffering, all her pain? Perhaps I was being a little bigoted, since I had been a shitty best friend for her at the time, but her pain, coupled with all the emotions and feelings I had been holding back, strengthened by my frustration, came toppling over and surged. She tried to shrug it off, saying I had my own life to live, but I remember hitting her back with even stronger words, telling her about my lack of care for my other friends when she was suffering. I told her everything. I poured my heart out. Everything that was long overdue, things that should have been said in our junior year of high school, it all came out. I said everything short of I love you. Somehow, those words managed to get stuck in the back of my throat and never come out. And she was in near tears at the end, by my sincerity or my anger, I wasn't sure what. But she accepted my words.

'I'm your best friend, I want to help you, I want to be there for you, because you mean so much to me. But I can't do that when you're keeping yourself bottled up like that, when you don't speak up. Please, communicate with me, because I don't want you to bottle up your feelings anymore. I don't want you to think you're alone. Because you're not. I am here. So what I'm so far away? So what I have my own life? I will throw all of that aside, if it means I can make you smile again. If I can help you get back up, heal you. So please, communicate with me, I don't want you to suffer, mi Chispita. You mean so much more then you think, especially to me. I want to be there for you. I want to help you.'

When I said that statement, I believe she finally understood. She saw everything, and how much of myself I exposed to her. And she did the same, she let all of her insecurities out, she let all of the hurt come out, the anger, the worst in her. I listened and helped.

I helped her every day, and that weak and strong bond suddenly flourished to life once again. She seemed to make a spontaneous recovery, she became so much better. She wasn't completely happy, but she was doing better. I felt happy.

It came crashing down again when she had to talk with him again, in order to fully resolve whatever problems, they had between them, and that day, was when I learned the limits of my hold on my emotions.

The hurt she had, the tears, the sorrow and regret. The words he had soullessly told her without remorse and with a laugh that tore at her.

All of that built up an immense of fury, hatred, disgust, and murderous intent on her ex. I vowed (to myself) to break him, to make him cry and suffer the same way she did. I still hold the vow. I learned how monstrous I was, and I accepted it.

She recovered, and now, I get to the present day.

I get to the reason I began writing this.

Because I have fallen in love with her again, and she does not know. At least, I pray she does not know. She has become sweeter, far happier, and insists on talking with me every day. But I know she does not feel the same way about me. And yet, she says things that throw me off and send me spiraling in confusion, and my mind and my heart nearly tear themselves apart.

So I write this, in order to avoid losing my sanity over this. This is only the short of it. What I plan on writing, is a product of me attempting to keep my sanity. This is simply the overall story to help you, the reader, understand. I will go into detail in the actual story. In a different one. But it will be in third person. There will be different names, in a fiction setting. But each one will be a memory of mine, down to little details. Different characters will simply live them. But it will be based on true events. Based on my experiences.

This is an incomplete story, because the ending hasn't happened yet, and the only time this short of the story will be updated is when the end happens, good or bad. And I pray I will be able to accept it.

Because love has broken me. And I know not what to do."

-Private Santa