You and Benedict meet through mutual friends, and hit it off. You have a long and wonderful friendship; he flies you out to visit him on set when your career and schedule allows it, and he crashes on your couch from time to time when he gets downtime between shoots. You love hanging out with one another and share pretty much everything, all of your heartaches and wishes, your achievements and upsets… phone calls and texts are constant, and you have conversations which last until three in the morning.
There are hints here and there that there’s relationship potential, but both of you are afraid of ruining the wonderful friendship and closeness you have, so neither of you ever gather up the nerve to act on it.
Eventually, you meet a wonderful man who you grow to love, and even though you have the nagging feeling that you should tell Benedict how you really feel and are afraid that you are somehow settling, you say ‘yes’ when he asks you to marry him after only 6 months of dating- nowhere near the 3 years you and Ben have been friends and grown close. When you tell Ben, he is genuinely excited for you and makes sure his schedule is clear for your wedding weekend. Benedict is in the wedding party, and is a groomsman to your fiance, who he has made an effort to befriend and gets along with quite well.
After the reception, you and your new husband head down the sidewalk through your cheering and well-wishing friends and family, towards your horse-drawn carriage which will whisk you away to your flight for the Bali honeymoon. Benedict is at the end of the group, and when you lean in to hug him goodbye, he whispers “You behave yourself, Lace’, and call me if you need anything at all. Love ya.” You can’t be sure, but you think you hear his voice catch, as if he’s choking back tears. You assure him, “I promise to call- don’t worry about me, Ben. Love you too.”
As the carriage takes you away, you look back, and Benedict- unaware you can see him- allows his smile to falter and reveals the face of a heartbroken man.
No- Lacey- you see, I really love you.
…what happens next? Should I go on?