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And So It Goes... [ - ]
by madewy
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Author's Notes:

And So It Goes, words and music by Billy Joel

A beautiful song, almost like poetry set to music, that makes me think of Tony.  That's it.

(Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. No copyright infringement is intended.) 

And So It Goes

In every heart there is a room
A sanctuary safe and strong
To heal the wounds from love long past
Until the new one comes along

Sam spoke honestly and frankly to her father and with her words pushed him to face his trepidation and go with his heart. Tony appreciated that. He appreciated that Sam was so comfortable with his loving Angela and so loved Angela herself, she would give him not only the verbal blessing he needed, but would also support him with her full, heartfelt approval, granting him the emotional sanction to finally make another life for himself. To finally commit completely, his heart to another as he had done with Marie.

I spoke to you in cautious tones
You answered me with no pretense
And still I feel I said too much
My silence is my self defense

He’d loved her for forever or so it seemed. He couldn’t remember when he didn‘t love her. He only remembers the quiet. A house full of quiet amidst all the laughter and noise. Amidst feuding children and holidays and celebrations. Children who seemed to get taller and wiser every time one of them stepped out of the house for a day at school or a trip to the mall, until the years hurried by in a rush of quiet and they were grown. Through all of that…and all the years, the noise couldn’t quell the quiet.

That’s how they spent their days and their nights. Surrounded by the quiet. Feelings left unexpressed. Words never spoken. Caution always at the vanguard. If sometimes she was less guarded than he it was, he believed, because she didn’t understand as well as he, the risk,,,what could be lost. She wasn’t aware of how all that mattered could be taken away at a moment’s notice…without warning. What they did have had to be protected. He thought he was protecting her. Through the sometimes resounding silences and through the rare, muted ones. Even if it meant hurting her. Even if it meant losing her affection…but not her very presence.

And every time I've held a rose
It seems I only felt the thorns
And so it goes, and so it goes
And so could you soon I suppose

He knew too well how precarious life was. How delicate the balance. There was, he knew, a fine line between happiness and regret. Fine lines are difficult to walk. He’d lost a lot in his life. He began to think it was his karma. The closer he’d get to the warm, inviting fire, the more he’d get burned. And so he was wary. And so he walked watchfully between the words that longed to be set free and the touches that ached to be felt. He stepped lightly around the smiles and the fervent glances and kept close to his heart the feelings that grew within.

Then one day the warmth became too inviting and the cold from outside too harsh and the fear, which had visited him before, came to stay. Whichever way he turned there were risks and he was aware of them. It was risky to say the words. It was risky to share the feelings. But the alternative was risky too. It was risky to turn away from what could be his if only… . He knew it was his fragile heart at stake, still… how long could he be silent before she turned away for ever?

But if my silence made you leave
Then that would be my worst mistake
So I will share this room with you
And you can have this heart to break

She knew them well. She knew him well. One night she called him on it. She could wait no longer. She broke through that stranglehold of quiet and spoke the words. She spoke the truth as only she could for only she could mirror what was inside of him. She alone knew. She mirrored his truth and she spoke and left him but one choice. His only choice was to speak the truth too.

And this is why my eyes are closed
It's just as well for all I've seen
And so it goes, and so it goes
And you're the only one who knows

He took the risk. He gambled his heart that this fire would burn slow and long. He gambled that he wasn’t imagining what she offered…that as hard as it was for him to believe, when he opened his eyes…his heart, she would still be there. That she would always be there. It was only then that the fear and anger, the disappointment and the heartbreak began to fade and he knew his future would be full again. Complete. When he’d committed his heart to her.

So I would choose to be with you
That's if the choice were mine to make
But you can make decisions too
And you can have this heart to break

He’d finally given his heart away again. Fully, completely. Something he hadn’t done in more than a decade. Something he was once certain he would never do again. He opens the small black box and looks at the ring. More than just another engagement ring, this ring is a symbol of his trust. His trust in her and in them. He is ready to believe again…to begin again. His heart is hers. He can’t remember when it wasn’t.

And so it goes, and so it goes
And you're the only one who knows

The End