The first days following Rosalie’s tragedy were hard. More than once, I’d had an urge to kill myself and release myself from the pain of living on my own without her. But after reflecting upon it again and again, I decided to live on, for both her and me, knowing that she wouldn’t want me to give up on myself. I recalled that she’d said–“Had we been an ordinary couple, living in an ordinary house, we would be perfect.” That was why I chose to live the way I did. A part of me knew that Rosalie was gone, but a bigger, more irrational part of me believed that her soul was still there, it was just that she couldn’t respond to me anymore. Sometimes, I would sit in front of her diamond statue, and speak to her.
Everybody had been doubting my faithfulness since I was young. Rosalie’s mother was only one of them. They were wrong, but the duchess was probably right not to trust me–not because I wouldn’t stay true to Rosalie, but because I was too blind to protect her.
Wealth and power are every man’s demon. The two are seen as one, and they often come and go hand in hand. Of all men, I failed the most miserably at confronting this demon. Yet, as I watched Biyn and Sigrun, I wasn’t so sure I was the worst anymore, although I hoped I was. I hadn’t known Sigrun long, but I had been where Biyn was, and I knew all too well the look Sigrun gave him as he spoke.
The look of fear, fear that he would lose himself chasing after wealth.
I sighed in disappointment when Biyn came racing towards me with a pocket knife. “You will lose her too,” I almost told him.
But I didn’t have to.
Sigrun pulled him back roughly, to slow him down. Then, she placed herself in between us. It was too late to jerk his own arm back when the knife had already stabbed through her heart. When he pulled back, the motion only completed the kill.
In silence, I watched Biyn embrace the corpse of the one he loved. He apologized, he wailed, he mourned for her, he expressed regret. Out of his mouth were words of promises, all of which starting with the words “if only”.
If only there was an “if only”, a lot of us wouldn’t be where we are now.