Nick came to Beaumont well into this teen years. Saw Josie from afar and knew he was in love. The only problem - she was very taken and he didn't stand a chance. He tired, but you all saw how that turned out.
When Liam left, Nick waited patiently for his chance and when he finally got it, he did everything he could to make Josie love him the way she loves Liam. In his heart, he knew that she still loved Liam. He could tell every time Josie looked at her son.
A man just knows.
So when he saw Liam walk in, with Katelyn guiding him, he knew.
You know that moment - the one that happens when you’re driving down the street and the oncoming car shines their brights at you? That is what I felt like when he walked into the carriage room on the day of Mason’s funeral.
My life flashed before my eyes.
Do you know what I saw? Your smile, the way you hold my hand and Noah’s laugh. I saw the way I held you, the way you fell asleep in my arms after a long day of work. I saw Noah and I in the backyard throwing the ball around and then I saw him standing there smirking and shaking his head. I saw that guy from high school and my scene changed. Everything started to fade away. You weren’t holding my hand, but his. Noah wasn’t laughing with me, but with him. I knew then that it was all going to be a distant memory for me. I had lost without even starting the fight.
When he walked in, I knew. I felt in my heart that you were gone and there wasn’t much I was going to be able to do except pray that you’d remember everything he had done, remember everything that you went through when he left. It’s pretty sad that I needed your bad memories to remind you of the hell you went through just so you’d pick me.
When I looked at him, I knew I was the better choice. I had plans for my life. I wasn’t going to depend on baseball to get me anywhere. But you, you only saw him. I had to watch from the sidelines until he made the ultimate mistake.
I remember the first time you brought me over to Mason and Katelyn’s. I was so nervous. We weren’t friends in high school, just teammates, even though I tried. I was surprised when he shook my hand, but it’s what he said to you that stands out now. "He always wanted what Liam had." He laughed. Mason laughed at me and any man would’ve turned around and left, but you were my salvation. If I had you, I was on the top of the world.
I wish I could say Mason was wrong, but he wasn’t. It’s true for the most part. I wanted you from the first time I saw you standing in the hall. I was going to talk to you, but he walked up and wrapped you in his arms. I had never felt so much jealousy before and I didn’t even know you. All I saw was this meathead who had something I wanted.
I knew Mason wasn’t my best friend. I was just a guy he put up with because you were his best friend and I was okay with that because it meant I could be with you more and you’d never have to choose me over them.
When he died, I knew our lives were going to be different, but I didn’t expect this. Not in a million years did I expect to be pouring myself out on a piece of paper and not standing up in front of our families devoting the rest of our lives to each other.
I knew deep down that I didn’t have your heart. I was just too stupid to believe it. I settled for whatever you were willing to give me because I’m in love with you. I should’ve known better then to think you’d get over him since you bore him a son. You looked at the love you shared every day in the eyes of Noah and I knew I couldn’t compete, but wanted to try. I wanted to give you the life you deserve.
I hate having these feelings. I hate that I’m writing you this letter while you’re at work. I hate packing and leaving our home, one that we’ve shared for years, but I can’t stay. I can’t sit back and watch you build a life with him because I know that’s what going to happen.
I’m going to Africa so you can start a life with Liam. I accept that, even if I want to stay and fight, I’m not willing to lose so I’m bowing out gracefully. I love you, Josie, and much like Liam, it’s been since I first saw you, I was just too late.