My Dream of Love

Monday, October 13, 2003

The Princess was wounded.

She knew it wouldn’t be long before she needed help. This day had worn her defenses down until she had nothing left to give, no way to fight any longer.

She felt eyes upon her in the thronging crowd of people in which she was trapped. Frightened, her gaze swiveled around.

There, not far from her, stood a Man. He was tall and darkly clad, and his eyes carried a depth of sorrow that matched her own—yet how could he know her pain? She found herself mesmerized, for the darkness of his eyes held more than the sorrow; it held a love like no other love she had ever seen or known. There was compassion, rest…safety in those eyes. Hope. Unexplainably, she trusted him. But who was he? There was something familiar about him, though she’d never seen him before on her journeys.

There was a touch at her elbow, and she turned, wondering how she was ever going to meet yet another need as she realized again her pain and weakness, longing all the while for the Prince to come to help her, to be there to look to across the crowd, to know that she could send a smile his way, and find a smile in return. Perhaps then, she could find the strength she needed to keep going. Oh, but she knew he wouldn’t come. He hadn’t in the past, and he would not be here now, no matter what fairytales she might construct in her exhausted longing.

Again, she felt the gaze. Turning back to meet those eyes, she felt a new thread of longing run through her soul, something different from what she had felt so long for the Prince. With this new longing came a deep knowing that she was not free to return the love in those ebony eyes. There was something so familiar in those eyes. Could it be the Prince?

But no, it couldn’t be. He was dead. He had walked away, abandoned her to her fate with nothing to hold onto but his good wishes. Yet the King had bound her to her love for him, for it seemed that He had decided her fate for her. She had no future to hope for with the Prince, for the King had only given her that love for today. He did things that way—only one day, one step, one moment at a time. He wanted her to trust Him for tomorrow, no matter what it might bring.
Another spasm of pain rocked her body, and she gasped for air, watching the eyes that still held hers darken with the weight of her burden. An ache grew within her to be free to love this Man who understood what no one around her had seen since the Prince had left her alone. But she couldn’t. Fear filled her, for she knew if she loved this Man, she would be betraying the love in her heart for the Prince.

Suddenly the crowd around her was dancing. The Princess was surrounded by hundreds of the knights of the kingdom circling and spinning their partners, dancing their own dance that seemed bent on sweeping her into the torrent of movement whether she wanted it or not. Someone took her arm and spun her away from her curious inspection of the Man. Away from those eyes. A strange weakness came over her as she tried to dance, and her dizziness increased.
The dance quickened—she couldn’t keep up. Her legs crumpled beneath her, and she collapsed into a heap on the ground with the others whirling mindlessly past, nearly trampling her in their exuberance. She was helpless, too weak to move, to even lift her head. And she was alone and suffering in the midst of their reckless gaiety.

Blackness threatened as the pain enveloped her afresh. She cried out weakly for someone… anyone to kneel and stay with her. If only they would stop dancing past! Couldn’t they hear her? Couldn’t they see?

But no one came.

Until… There was a touch at her shoulder. She looked up, suddenly realizing that she was crying. Through her tears, she watched as the Man knelt beside her. In the mist of her weeping, he appeared as the light of morning, and she watched a single tear fall like a diamond upon her breast, over her heart as he moved her head into his lap. He gently touched her hand. She grasped his hand with cold and trembling fingers. His touch was warm and firm and comforting.

And then he began to sing—a wordless melody of love and hope, a song she had never heard before, but a song so beautiful she wanted always to remember it. She wanted to sing it back to him, but had no words, no voice. Still he held her hand, and she found to her surprise she no longer feared to love him. He didn’t speak, or do anything to try to help her. But she didn’t mind. His presence was enough. She wanted him to stay there forever, for she felt stronger, and she knew that he would be able to lift her when she was strong enough to stand. Perhaps, he would even hold her hand when she stood.

Soon, however, the knights realized that she was on the ground. Not seeming to see the Man, they pulled her from the ground, lifting her away from him, tearing her grip from the hand that still held hers. They carried her away, so that she could rest and heal, and she accepted their help. Still, something caused her to look back. His eyes were full of sorrow and longing as he stood looking after them. She tried with her tears to reassure him, to somehow express her regret for his pain…

He gently extended his hand, reaching after her, still holding her gaze with his own eloquent eyes. In that instant she knew that he had loved her when he first laid eyes on her. The knowledge filled her with a soaring joy that warred with the ache of mourning that held her captive. Her heart belonged to another, yet the love this man held for her would not take her love from her against her will. She was free to own or to give her heart as she chose.

The Princess was startled to realize something else as she gazed back into the depths of those eyes, a truth that blinded and deafened her to turmoil around her, unfolding inside her heart with a strange awakening light.

He would always be there waiting, watching, and loving her.


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