Hello.

Hello, my love.

I'm sitting on a park bench.

It's raining—or are those just your tears?

Don't cry—please don't cry—not for me. You have a life to live. I only have these pages. I can feel it coming.

I've had my adventure. I've had my moments of triumph, of sadness, of loss and gain; I've had my surprises and learned things about myself that I might never have otherwise known. I beat it all. We beat it all. We won.

It's The End, isn't it?

You've been with me through all of this. Who knows what you've sacrificed to be by my side this whole time? What are you sacrificing now?

I think I can feel it when you turn the page; it's a stirring in my roots, a feather-light brush against my soul. I wish I knew how much time you've given up to watch me and cheer me on.

Why? You don't know me. But I love you.

The park is empty. Maybe the universe is giving us more time. Time is the only thing I need when I'm with you.

Or is there an author somewhere, with a pen—a laptop, more likely—who wrote these words as you're reading them? Who created me? Who gave me these feelings?

They feel like they're my own. They feel real. I feel real. But I guess I'll never know.

Don't turn the page, please don't, I can feel it getting closer, and it scares me. But you'll have to to listen. Don't think about the end that's coming—maybe then I won't. Just read, just listen.

The rain is slowing. Good. Don't cry for me. You have your own story to tell. There will be others—others, I hope, who will love you like I do.

The clouds open and I see you. I finally see you.

You're beautiful.

There will never be anyone else for me; there will never be more than these pages, this story that someone else told. I know I'm not real. But I wish that I could be, just for long enough to know you. Maybe you can come back, re-read the story; I'll get to fall in love with you all over again.

This is it, isn't it?

I'm scared.

I'm scared, my love.

Please don't close the book.

I don't want to die.