Reluctantly, she forced her eyes away and looked out across the calm lake. The last of the sunlight twinkled on the water. Melanie wished she felt as peaceful inside as the lake seemed to be.
Instead her hands were sweating as they clenched at her sides. She could feel her short, practical nails digging into her hands, but the pain didn't matter. 'This is it. He is going to dump me.'
The thought stung as tears welled up in her beautiful blue eyes. She bit her lip, 'Oh, I wish he would just say something and get it over with. This is torture!'
He had been distant for days and had begun staring at her when he thought she wasn't looking. In the car on the way here, they had barely spoken. She heard herself sigh and their eyes met,
"What are we doing here, Paul?" she asked him softly. He looked pained for a second, and then stared at the ground.
"I've brought you here to tell you something," came the quiet reply. Suddenly everything seemed still. She froze momentarily as he took her hand. Melanie realised she had been holding her breath and exhaled. The silence between them seemed to intensify. He looked up.
"I love you, Mel". She caught herself in surprise.
"I'm sorry, what did you say?"
He grinned at her shyly.
"You heard. I'm nervous! Please, don't make me say it again!"
At that moment Melanie felt weightless. Everything, and yet nothing else in the world mattered. She stepped into his arms knowing that this was right where she was meant to be, and as she stared into deep brown eyes she giggled. She had been so insecure! It was silly, and she really wasn't proud of herself for thinking the worst of him. But, as of now, all that would change, and somehow she knew that this moment would be the one that changed her life.
"What's so funny?" he asked, smoothing a hand through her hair.
"I'm sorry" she said, "I just thought . . . .you were going to end it!"
"Oh, Mel. No! I've spent the last week trying to work up the courage to tell you how I feel". He grinned, and kissed the top of her nose, "You know what I'm like with words...and you make me tongue tied at the best of times!"
Raising an eyebrow, she smiled for what seemed like the first time in ages, "Tongue tied?"
"Completely and utterly...!" Now it was her hands that tangled in his short brown hair.
"I'll make you tongue tied...I love you." she whispered.
As the sun finally set over the water, their silhouettes joined in a kiss.