She looked around the apartment, which was once immaculate but was now something of a disaster. Numbness consumed her and she couldn't bring herself to look at her husband. She didn't have to be a psychiatrist to know that he was absolutely furious with her; and with good reason. The dinner party she'd insisted on helping him with was an absolute catastrophe, in more ways than one. Niles' reputation had been ruined, but so had their home and their marriage.

Frasier had done his best to comfort her and assured her that he would speak to Niles and take the blame for what had happened. But Daphne wasn't stupid. Frasier valued his reputation just as much if not more so than Niles and he'd walk through fire before he'd take the blame for Daphne's stupidity. No, this was entirely her fault and no one else's.

She wanted so badly to apologize to Niles but she knew that no amount of explaining or apologizing was going to make things right. Nothing ever would. And she was terrified of the consequences. Her marriage was destroyed as well as their home, never to be mended again. Her husband could no longer trust her and the thought cut deep into her soul. She wasn't sure how she was going to live without him but she was going to have to try. It was inevitable.

It was then that she saw Niles come down the stairs, still unable to look at him. She didn't have to, to know that he was mad. No… he was more than mad. Much more…

He was furious.

But she couldn't simply ignore him. She loved him too much. Oh so much. And so as soon as he reached the bottom of the stairs, she smiled at him. "Hello, Sweetheart. You look so handsome. Let me get you some breakfast."

But to her dismay, he walked right past her, an angry glare on his face. The shunning was almost unbearable. "Niles, where are you going?"

"Out." He snapped.

She swallowed hard, the hot tears burning her eyes. She should have never tried to help him with his dinner party or even suggest that they do it together. It was a complete disaster.

When the door slammed shut, she sank down onto their bed, which was once on the second floor master bedroom but had fallen through the ceiling, with her mother and the "famous" Mike Shaw in the middle of it.

As soon as the guests left, she had ordered her mother out of the house telling her never to return; a gesture that pained her even further. But she didn't know what else to do. Luckily, Frasier said that he would take care of finding Gertrude a place to stay for a few days. But now Daphne was going to have to find a place of her own.

She sat on the bed, sobbing uncontrollably into her hands. Niles was gone, perhaps forever and she'd never see him again. How could things have gone so wrong? She'd planned it so carefully. Hopefully one day he would love her again, but she didn't see how.

She was still crying when she heard the door open and she turned around in surprise. "Niles…"

He went to her at once, taking her into his arms. She sobbed even harder, feeling guilty as he rocked her back and forth. "It's okay, sweetheart. It's okay."

More abruptly than she intended, she pulled out of his arms. "It's not okay Niles, don't you understand that? I ruined everything! Our home, your reputation, our marriage! How can you still love me?"

He kissed her then, a kiss that was surprisingly passionate and brushed the tears from her cheeks. "I'll always love you Daphne. I'll never stop."

As she leaned against him and closed her eyes, she hope he knew that she would always love him too.

THE END