The End of Something Beautiful
Vincent stood in the graveyard, alone. The snow crunched underneath his boots, a light powder still falling to the ground in a steady rhythm. But the chill in the air was only skin-deep. Nothing like the cold in his heart.
Vincent and Miles had first met seven years ago. Vincent was working as a loan officer at the local bank when Miles had come in to try and secure a loan for his new small business. The two immediately hit it off and as soon as their professional relationship ended, they started dating.
It was one of those relationships that was perfect from the beginning. Every date brought them closer together, leaving them desperate for more. Even Miles telling Vincent that he had HIV was not enough to scare him off.
After only a month, Vincent and Miles started introducing each other to friends and family. Vincent’s family immediately loved Miles and took him in as their own. Miles’s family was slightly less enthusiastic, but was tolerant since anyone could see how happy Miles was. Everyone was just so happy to see two people who had found such joy in each other.
After only six months into their relationship, Miles moved into Vincent’s house. That had been a little rocky to start. Vincent was very neat and organized, while Miles was much messier. They had quite a few disagreements over how the house should look and who would do what chores in the first few weeks of their cohabitation.
But soon, the two had fallen into a rhythm. They had learned to compromise and soon were back on friendly terms. Although, Vincent had to admit that the make-up sex had been good while it lasted.
A few years went by and everything stayed happy. Vincent and Miles were as happy as they were in the beginning. Sure, they still had some disagreements, but what couple doesn’t? They quickly fell into a very domestic lifestyle. Both men had to admit that it was not something they thought would ever happen to them, but they both loved the life that they had built.
When gay marriage was legalized in their home state of New York, Miles had proposed to Vincent. It was beautiful. He had converted their entire backyard into a romantic paradise, with candles and flowers. The two had even celebrated their engagement with passionate love-making under a star-filled sky. They had gotten married a month later in the city of New York, making the two hour drive south with family and friends. The ceremony was special, but nothing would ever compare to their engagement, in Vincent’s mind. The wedding was more of a joint celebration, with friends and family there to cheer them on. But the engagement was theirs.
They had one happy year of marriage before everything fell apart. Miles’s HIV meds started to fail and he got sicker and sicker. Vincent stood by his husband’s side day after day, holding his hand through the pain, kissing away the tears on Miles’s face, talking with doctors, looking for new treatments. But, in the end, it was not enough.
Vincent looked down at the tombstone he had made for his husband.
Miles Stephan Walker
December 8, 1979-January 28, 2013
Beloved husband, son and friend
It was simple. Too simple to describe what he had lost on that day. Vincent’s heart lay in the ground under his feet. Miles had taken that with him.
Vincent would go on. He would go back to work, where he first met his beloved. He would live in the house that they bought together. But he would never live again. He would merely survive, his broken heart preventing him from loving life the way that he did when he had his Miles.
As Vincent read the inscription again, tears rushing down his face, he thought about all of the time he had lost. They could have had so many years together, if it had not been for the horrible disease that had ravaged his love’s body. But now that was all gone, a buried pile of broken dreams under the snow.
Unable to look anymore, Vincent placed a kiss on his gloved hand before reverently placing it on the tombstone in silent goodbye. Turning and walking back to his car, Vincent continued to cry over his beautiful husband. He would be back tomorrow to check on his love. This was his life now, spending everyday crying over the end of something beautiful.