Lissiel claimed she didn't love him, but Halbarad knew it was a falsehood. Her eyes glimmered with the love she felt for him, even as the tears fell down her face. In these days of peace, when war was fading into memory, their love began to grow cold. When they were unsure if either lived, it added to the heat of their bittersweet liaisons. Maybe it was knowing that both were alive and well that chilled their affair? He wasn't sure, and she wasn't talking. All he knew was that the sight of her, half-naked in his room was his weakness, his undoing.
"If you truly want to leave me, then I will respect your decision," he murmured into the darkness. "But know you'll take my heart with you and I shall never love another."
"I do not dare leave my husband," Lissiel replied softly. "To do so would separate me from my children, for he would surely take them away."
Halbarad hung his head in sorrow. Her answer was plain; she would not stay. He heard her footsteps upon the floor, and her finger lightly touched his chin. Lifting his head, she gently wiped his tears away.
"But my heart is, and always was yours, Halbarad. Never doubt that." Lissiel went up on her tiptoes to kiss his lips lightly, then she turned and left the room swiftly.
Halbarad watched her rush from the building out into the night, in the direction of her home. Getting dressed, he picked up his bag and left a half-hour later, mounting his horse and heading for Fornost. At least with the rangers, he would find enough work and friendship to keep him from thinking of her.
A 'what-if' little story I got hit with to write. Halbarad survived the war, but...