I'm sorry if you expect me to do the noble thing. I warned you. I'm not sweet or soft or kind, and you fell anyway. This is what you get, Violet— me. The good, the bad, the unforgivable. All of it. I am yours." His arm wraps around the small of my back, holding me steady and close. "You want to know something true? Something real? I love you. I'm in love with you. I have been since the night the snow fell in your hair and you kissed me for the first time. I'm grateful my life is tied to yours because it means I won't have to face a day without you in it. My heart only beats as long as yours does, and when you die, I'll meet Malek at your side. It's a damned good thing that you love me, too, because you're stuck with me in this life and every other that could possibly follow.