"I vow to move on from you and live a long happy life but you'll always be in my heart" I placed my hand on Hope's tombstone and placed her fresh roses beside it." A vow I thought I'd never make.
It had been 4 years since my fiancee had passed away...My name is Julian and I'm currently 34 years old. 4 years ago my future was already planned and I had no worries about anything at all that is until my fiancee was involved in a hit and run accident. I witnessed it all and I couldn't do anything about it. Since her passing I never even once thought of dating again and entered in a terrible mental state. Thankfully I had one of my closest friends to help me out and try to encourage me the best they could even if they knew it wouldn't change anything. I never thought I could feel so empty inside...It was like if all my feelings disappeared, like if my heart was ripped apart from my body. I felt nothing. That's how it's been since her departure from earth and I don't think I will ever change, I pushed everyone away including the ones who cared for me the most, including the ones who have stopped me from joining my fiancee where ever she was. My friends name is Carol, she has always been with me throughout the time and has taken care of me in any way possible and today she told me the new year coming up was going to change.Today is November 20th,2020 the time when families gather and celebrate their existence. Every new year has been the same for me, look at the clock, watch it strike 12, put a fake smile on, and go back to bed.
Today I woke up and rubbed my eyes as my sight was quite blurry from being on my phone until 4am. "Julian its 9am get up! I made breakfast, lets eat together for once please?" I looked at Carol in the eyes and responded "I'll go bring my food back to my room. You know I don't like to go out of my room" Carol slightly smiled and nodded and after some time I went out to the kitchen and grabbed my breakfast and on my way to my room Carol stopped me "Are you sure you don't want to join me at the table?" she tugged on my shirt slightly and I sighed loudly "I guess I can today" I saw as her face lit up and I followed her to the table and sat down. "This is the first time we eat together! Did something happen?" she tilted her head and stared at me "Well not really. I don't even know why I agreed" I took a bite out of my pancakes. My friend Carol moved in with me a year after my fiancee's death when she noticed that I wasn't doing well alone with my thoughts, her life changed once she moved in with me and it makes me feel more guilty and the reason I had agreed was because I heard her on the phone last night and she was arguing with her boyfriend about how they never saw each other and from the other side I heard her boyfriend well ex-boyfriend now yell "Why do you have to take care of him!? He's not a little kid he can take care of himself! It sucks Carol! I can never see you because you have to take "care" of him just marry him or something already!" I heard her sob but I stayed in my room. It made me realize that she has been doing so much for me and there was never progress but she still tried her best, It took me long to notice but now I'm starting to appreciate everything she does.
"Well at least you're here now. It's some progress" she smiled and continued eating " I'll wash the dishes and go back to my room" I said trying to finish my food quickly to leave since I was feeling uncomfortable "Oh- Uhm do you want to go out to the mall with me? " She looked at me nervously "I'm not in the mood" I grabbed my plate and hers and washed them "You're never in the mood" I heard her even though it was a whisper "Fine" I changed my answer and headed to my room to change. "Be ready in 5!" I heard her yell and changed into some sweatpants and a hoodie and headed out to the living room to wait for Carol who just walked in "Okay lets go!...You look nice" she smiled and grabbed my arm as I slightly flinched at her touch. When we arrived to the mall I put on my hood on and walked with her keeping my distance, at the entrance of the mall I noticed 2 familiar figures and squinted to see if it was who I thought it was "Yeah it's Luke and Veronica... I invited them..." Carol said and I looked at her and I was fighting with myself if I should go in with them or just go to the car. The last time I had seen my friends Luke and Veronica was at the funeral of the love of my life so it wasn't easy looking at them. "Hey Julian! How are you?" Luke came up to me and put his arm around my shoulder making me feel more awkward "Uhm... Carol I'll stay in the car" I walked away to the car and heard footsteps behind so I turned around and faced Veronica...? She was the one I least talked to but she was also my fiancee's best friend. "Why won't you go in?" she asked "I don't feel comfortable" I answered honestly "I thought you would be fine now Julian... Everyone has moved on except you. You have to let Hope go." she said as she looked at me straight in the eye with no facial expression "How did you move on so easily? You were her best friend! You were with Hope all the time how could you move on so quickly!? Just a week had passed from her death and you were already partying!" I raised my voice a little with anger. "We all deal with pain differently Julian. You don't know me like Hope did. She would have wanted you to be living a good life and maybe she would want you to be with someone new... But no, you're miserable Julian." her words slapped me in the face and what I thought what had been ripped from me started aching. "You don't understand Veronica. Hope was going to be my wife. Hope was the ONE. She was my soulmate..." I felt tears form in my eyes as I tried my best to hold them back.
"Julian the thing is that she would've wanted you to move on.You're disappointing her." Veronica turned around to leave the scene but my words stopped her "I don't think you understand Veronica, you've never loved anybody and nobody has loved you and don't put words in Hopes mouth." I walked away and entered the car. I saw Veronica look at me through the window and gave me a small smile and walked away... I wish I could go home. I didn't want to be here anymore... I decided to get out of the car and take a bus instead, I walked to the bus stop and sat down on the bench. There was only me and another girl "Hello! I'm Robyn what's your name?" she suddenly introduced herself making me confused "Uhm I'm Julian..." she walked up to me and she was honestly very pretty "That's a very nice name! I like it... could I have your number?" she smiled at me and it was strange to say her smile was blinding. As I took long to respond she added "Or are you taken...?" my eyes widened "Oh uhm yes..." I showed her my hand the finger with my promise ring getting more attention, I had matching promise rings with Hope. "Oh... sorry." she got out of my personal space and I heard someone scream my name "Julian!" I turned around to Carol and she was trying to catch her breath "You're leaving?" she asked but before I could respond Robyn entered the conversation "Oh! Are you his wife? Such a cute couple! I wish I could have a relationship like this" she cupped her face and I immediately corrected her "No no she can't compare to my fiancee she's just a friend, please don't assume." I responded and turned to Carol who's eyes seemed to water and she ran back the way she came from and Robyn walked up to me shaking her head "Do you not notice the way she looks at you?" I furrowed my eyebrows "What do you mean?" I asked "It's so noticeable that she's in love with you." she responded "Please I just told you to not assume-" Robyn cut me off "I'm not assuming. She's literally in love with you... You should talk to her. Notice her." The bus arrived and she left me. Was carol really in love with me? That can't be possible... She's just a friend and nothing else... I can't and won't move on from Hope, I can't betray her by moving on and forgetting about her.
My happiness will always be attached to Hope... Maybe I should join her soon. Carol cannot fall in love with a person that is planning to leave this world to join his only true love. I started jogging to the direction that Carol had ran, I started thinking about everything she has done for me including the little things. I began running, she was always there for me...but now I'm starting to notice, I ran faster, she would comfort me and compliment me in anything I'd do, I stopped in my tracks and faced her. "Is it true?" I asked looking down at her "If it is what i'm thinking...Yes." she looked away from my stare and I sighed "Carol... You know I do love you... but not in the way you want me to. Hope will always be in my heart. I won't move on, I won't be a bother to you anymore Carol. I'll let you live your life happily while I live mine with Hope." I smiled at her and her expression changed and I felt a sharp pain on my cheek "Are you dumb Julian!? You have people here that love you! Why would you leave us!? Leave ME!? Look around you, there's so much to live for. Hope would want you to be happy Julian!" I could hear the pain in her voice "STOP! You don't know that! Why are you guys putting words in Hope's Mouth! What if she's waiting for me!? What if she's all alone waiting for me to join her!? What if Carol!" I broke down in tears "Julian...If you had passed away would you be selfish and want your partner to become miserable and die to go to you or would you want them to be happy?" My heart felt like it was hurting... I felt like I couldn't breathe. "Carol... I'm... I'm leaving" I ran away. I ran away as fast as I could and headed back home. I locked myself in my room alone accompanied by my thoughts, "Hope... I'm sorry for making you wait so long...I'm sorry for starting to think about someone else besides you. Please forgive me." I walked to the closet where I had tools stored and looked for the sharpest object in it. I heard a knock on the door and headed out to see who it was because Carol wouldn't knock since she had her own keys, I looked through the peephole and saw Erza... Hope's Mom. I opened the door and let her in "Oh sweetie you look horrible! I got a call from Veronica and Carol! Carol sounded so worried so I rushed here!" she chuckled and sat down on the couch "I'm fine" I smiled "Son It's been 4 years. I know you're probably tired of hearing this but please Julian. I was in the same dark place like you, I also wanted to leave to join my daughter but I stopped myself. I know she wouldn't want that and you know it Julian. Hope would never want us to think such things! In fact you're hurting her by thinking you should leave this world! Think about Carol... Try to see if it works out and if it doesn't its fine. Don't think you're betraying Hope by moving on Julian, you got it all wrong. In fact she would be proud of you! I know the love you had for her was special and it doesn't mean Carol is going to replace her. You'll have your own special way of loving someone else. Hope will happily wait for you because she loves you so much. I'm telling you this, Hopes Mother, so please think about it Julian. Please."
She stood up and walked out. Maybe Erza is right... I just needed time, even if I already had enough. I talked to Carol and decided that I would go away for some time, I went away to be alone and it really helped. In fact I was starting to miss Carol, We rarely talked but at night I would think about her and decided to talk to her more; "Carol... Please be patient for me. I'll come back" I said into the phone and heard her giggle "I've always been waiting for you Julian. I've always been patient". A year later I came back, being alone was what I needed, once again at was at the doorsteps and before I could knock on the door Carol came running out and hugged me so tight that it made me laugh for once. "I've heard you laugh on the phone but never got to actually see you." I smiled at her "First time I've seen you smile too!" I looked behind Carol and saw Erza "I'm glad you moved on" she hugged me "It was my vow for you and Hope." I got a flashback to when I made that vow;
"Hello Hope, I really miss you... I'm sorry for thinking such things. You're probably upset with me and I understand, I'll change for you and Erza. Your mom opened my eyes and made me realize a lot. I vow to move on from you and live a long happy life but you'll always be in my heart." I placed my hand on Hopes tombstone and placed her fresh roses beside it.
Today was January 1st, 2022 and I was happy to be alive. Without Erza and Carol I would have never made that Vow for 3 reasons. One was because I wouldn't want to move on from Hope, the second reason is because I wouldn't be alive to make that Vow, and the third obvious one was that I never thought Hope would die to make such Vow. "Come on Julian let's go inside now and celebrate!" Carol said as she dragged me inside "Eyyy! Julian how are you?" Luke put his arm around my shoulder "Fantastic!" I smiled and headed towards Veronica "She's proud. I know it." I nodded at her words and walked towards Carol "I'm glad you're back. I missed you." she said shyly making me smile "I missed you too." I looked at her eyes widened and slowly leaned in to her lips. We shared a sweet kiss and our friends started cheering. "I love you" Carol said and without hesitation I replied "I love you too".
"Julian! Hurry we're going to be late for Faith's wedding!" Carol was in a hurry "I don't even wanna go" I replied "How could you say that! It's your daughters wedding! I know she's barely 20 but it's not that young. It's her life Julian come on now!" she smacked my arm "Okay okay". I entered the church with my daughter holding onto my arm and let her go to her soon to be husband. A decade ago I told Carol I wasn't interested in getting married, I know I made a Vow to move on from Hope but marriage was something that was a sensitive topic for me since the only person I wanted to marry was Hope. After watching my Daughter get married I made a decision.
Now here I was standing at the altar watching as Carol walks in with a beautiful white dress. I smiled at our 4 children watching us happily and cheering when "You may kiss the bride" was said. We spent our last remaining years happily and the love we had for each other was special in its own way. 2 Years later from my marriage I woke up in a bright place, my eyebrows furrowed in confusion as I looked around "Hello Honey" I turned my head to the direction of the voice I had recognized and there was the most beautiful woman ever "H-Hope?" I stuttered out "I missed you. I'm proud of you for the vow you made. I'm proud at the fact that you moved on and lived a happy life." she wrapped her arms around me and hugged me. She looked the same, she was still young, I looked at my hands and saw that they weren't wrinkled and my skin was soft, I was also young. "Let's go now Julian, we're finally together. Let's enjoy our time here. In the afterlife." Hope said and I smiled as we shared a kiss. I grabbed her hand and we walked to the light and smiled at each other "I love you" we both told each other at the same time 'Thank you for everything Carol. My time has ended. I love you too.' I said mentally and walked in with Hope happily.