How long have I been sitting here with you?

It's probably no more than twenty minutes, but it feels like hours and hours as we wait for the doctor to come back.

Waiting and waiting...

I you have a sense of time, or is life one long endless day to you?

I'd like to think you do know that time goes by. That each year, month, and day you lived, you were loved.

Because you were indeed very, very much loved.

Mom and Dad aren't here. They couldn't bear to see you like this, I guess. I find that a tad ironic, because I remember Dad spending the last hours with a couple's dying dog because they were too upset to themselves.

I guess it's different when it's your own pet. You can comfort others and feel sorrow for their loss, but when it's your own pet, it's different. It's real, if that makes any sense.

It's personal. You're not just losing an animal you may have been acquainted with at best.

You're losing a, you're losing a family member.

You know we loved you as family, right? At least I do. Ever since the day Mom brought you home, you were irreplaceable family to me.

I don't fault my siblings for not being here. Matt and Mary live far away and are way too busy with work and kids to fly in, no matter how much they may have wanted to. Lucy, like Mom and Dad, is simply too emotional to see you in this state. Ruthie's too busy studying for college exams and just couldn't get away. And Sam and David are much too young and innocent to see you in such pain.

But, I know they all loved you. I feel it in my heart and soul.

I hope you have a soul. I know some religious text is iffy on it, pets having souls and going to Heaven.

No, you definitely have a soul. I feel it.

You will go to Heaven. You are too good and pure not to.

When pets die, it's said they cross a Rainbow Bridge to an eternal paradise where they wait patiently to one day to be reunited with their owners.

Will I see you again one day, then? I can only hope so. To see you frolic and play again at your youthful prime would be a dream come true.

It breaks my heart to see you like this. So weak and frail, ready to let go at any second. I have a feeling that I know what the doctor is going to say about your condition. That I'm too late to save your life.

I'm sorry I didn't notice your health deteriorating sooner. It just feels like you got so weak and sick overnight. I feel so helpless thinking there was no way for me to even know, let alone save you.

I'm trying so hard to keep it together right now. For your sake mainly. You don't need to see me cry. You're in enough pain without me adding to it.

I start petting you gently now, trying to be careful where I touch. I don't want to touch you in any spot that may cause you more pain.

You're my best know that, right? Even as the years went on and I moved on without you, I thought of you every single day.

I wanted to take you with me whenever I went somewhere new. But, unfortunately, the time was never right.

Now I can take you anywhere, and you're too sick and weak to go. It's so unfair, to both you and me. It's a cruel fate life has dealt us.

I want to turn back time, you know. I want to be that carefree 10-year-old boy again that wanted nothing more than to get a dog. I want to relive the day you came into my yard and my arms.

And my heart...

The doctor finally comes in. He says, in a quiet and sad voice, that nothing can be done to save you. That the most humane thing to do is to end your suffering.

I clench up, a pain rippling through my heart. I know in the back of my mind that this was bound to happen, but hearing those words out loud stings me to my very core.

It makes this all real. No hiding or denying can be done anymore.

You are dying. And there's nothing I can do but choose to speed the process along and help you suffer less.

Fighting back tears, I tell the doctor that I agree. I don't want want to see you suffer anymore. I don't think my heart can take it.

I want to set you free of your pain.

The doctor nods solemnly as he prepares to begin the process of ending your pain. I stay in my seat next to you, waiting for the inevitable.

I take your paw as the doctor sets up the needle. I don't want to watch this, but I know I can't leave you alone. I could never do that, no matter how much pain my heart may be in.

The doctor injects you and turns to me. It will only be a matter of time, he says, so say your goodbyes while you still can.

I put my face close to yours.

"I love you, girl. I'll miss you so, so much," I whisper gently.

You lick my face. It's at that moment I know.

You know what's happening to you. You love me too. You've accepted that your time is up and God is calling you home with grace.

You're a good girl. You always have been.

Slowly, as time passes, your eyes close and your breathing stops. The doctor checks for a heartbeat, and there's nothing.

You're gone. You're really gone.

It is then and only then when it is confirmed I let the tears I have held back fall.

I keep your paw in my hand. The doctor tells me to take all the time I need. It's a slow day, so I have plenty of time to sit with you and get myself together.

I don't know how long I sit there, just holding your paw, crying silently.

My mind is full of memories. So many happy, wonderful memories.

You were a good dog. The best ever, in fact.

You are indeed in Heaven now. I can feel it. We will meet again one day, I know it.

Until then, there is a hole in my heart that will never be filled. But I have to hang in there, for your sake. You'd never want me to give up.

One last time, I kiss your head.

Rest in peace, Happy. I'll miss you. I love you.

And I'll never forget you.

I'll never forget you
You'll always be by my side
From the day that I met you
I knew that I would love you 'til the day I die
And I will never want much more
And in my heart I will always be sure
I will never forget you
And you'll always be by my side 'til the day I die
-"Never Forget You", Zara Larsson and MNEK

A/N: This was written on a whim. I promised myself "Unwelcome Complications" would be my last 7H fanfic and I'd move on to writing for other things since this show's fandom is dead as a doornail and I was getting no feedback on my stories for it (aside from from a very rude and vulgar flame on UC that I deleted), but then fate intervened.

Last week, suddenly and tragically, my kitten Sophie passed away. I wrote this to deal with my grief. Simon and Happy have always had one of my favorite human-pet relationships in fiction so it felt very appropriate to me to write about them for this particular situation.

As for the comments about Heaven expressed here, I personally don't believe in God or Heaven (which is another reason I wanted to drop 7H from my writing, I no longer connect with it on a spiritual level like I did when I still considered myself a Christian). But I'd like to think there is something after death and in some way, shape, or form I'll be reunited with my precious Sophie one day.

That's all I have to say other than this: Rest in peace, Sophie. I'll miss and love you and you'll always be in my heart.