Katie Ann Bell was 12 when she found herself sitting by her best friend, Evan hanging their feet over the edge of the 'Kiss Me Quick Bridge' telling him that her mother had just left her abusive husband, and Katie's father.

"I'm sorry Kate. But she's left before; don't you think she'll come back?" Evan asked his friend.

"No, this was different. I think she is gone for good this time. I would be." Katie said.

Surprisingly Katie was not crying but she was wearing a very upset expression.

Later that day Katie came home and her father rudely informed her that he was going to look for her mother. Four hours later her father roughly dragged her bruised mother in the front door by the wrist.

-X-

Katie was 13 when she climbed quietly out a bedroom window and ran to the house down the street to tell Evan how her older brother, Eli had sold her to a friend for the night for drugs and a case of beer. The night had been spent suffering rapes and sexual abuse.

Evan sat with her and held her while she cried. It was the first and only time he had ever saw her cry. Katie had been developing a strong sense of hate toward the men in her life and this event pushed her to the edge.

"I'm going to get away from them one day Evan." Katie said still crying.

"You will Kate. You really will." Evan said and started petting the back of Katie's head.

-X-

Katie was 14 years old when she realized she positively hated her life. All color and sincere happiness drained from her on the event of her mother's death. Katie's mother had never exactly been in good health but everyone knew she had died from misery.

Katie lived her life waiting and watching for her chance to leave the small town that imprisoned her.

-X-

When Katie was 16 Evan told her that he was going away to chase his dreams and he would not forget her. He left with a promise of one day returning. Katie reluctantly learned to cope with out her only and best friend.

-X-

Four years after Evan left there was a knock on Katie's front door. It was Evan. He had kept his promise of coming back.

She opened the door and before the two old friends could greet each other Evan dropped to one knee and pulled from his pocket, a little blue box.

"Katie Ann Bell, I have loved you my whole life. Will you do me the honor of being my wife?"

Katie's hand unconsciously covered her mouth. There was a moment's silence.

"Yes Evan. Yes!" she said with all signs of happiness.

-X-

Katie's father was sitting in his chair when Katie walked in the living room of their dark house.

"Dad I'm leaving. I'm marrying Evan and we are leaving here." Katie said firmly as she walked around the living room picking up trinkets.

"What?" her father bellowed as he made a drunken attempt to stand.

The man found his feet bumping into a table.

"You can't marry that snot nose brat. You have to stay here and take care of me."

"Learn to take care of yourself." Katie said not sparing her father a glance.

"I forbid it Katie." Her father said stabbing his finger in the air.

"Listen to me! He is my ticket out of here. Second hand fame is better than this. He is going to give me everything you never did. Take care of yourself it's more than you did for Eli or me." Katie said with her face a few inches from her father's.

Her words were venomous.

-X-

Years of marriage later Evan found that a relationship founded on pity had in fact turned to affection. When he had proposed to Katie five years ago he had to admit that the action had been taken out of obligation more than love. But still Evan could not think of a better person to marry. Katie was his best friend and had been since they were little she was as attractive as any other and she was easy enough to get along with. She never denied him. In fact it was a perfect marriage except, there was no real true love.

-X-

Evan was sitting on his computer desk looking at a magazine when his wife came into the room.

"Evan?" She said softly.

"Yes dear?" He answered.

"I need to tell you something." Katie said quietly. "When you left I was so angry at you; I felt like I had lost my chance get away from there, and when you came back and ask me to marry you I felt like I was getting a second chance. In the beginning I led you on; I didn't marry you because I loved you. But then I noticed that the acting became easier, I've just realized that I'm not acting anymore. Somewhere in the past five years I have fallen in love with you." She said all this rather fast.

Evan didn't speak. He watched his wife tell him what he already knew. Well, at least the first part, but had she really fallen in love with him?

"I want you Evan." She said as she stepped the length between her and her husband.

She put her arms around him and kissed his lips fiercely. He returned the kiss with want and sexual need.

"I love you." Katie whispered in Evan's ear.

It was not the first time she had said this but they both knew this was the first time she had ever meant it.

"I love you too." Evan said knowing that he meant it just as much.