He waited. She looked at him. Then she looked away. He was too beautiful.
"I love you," Buttercup said.
"I know this must come as something of a surprise,
since all I've ever done is scorn you and degrade you and taunt you,
but I have loved you for several hours now, and every second, more.
I thought an hour ago that I loved you more
than any woman has ever loved a man,
but a half hour after that I knew that what I felt before
was nothing compared to what I felt then.
But ten minutes after that, I understood that my previous love
was a puddle compared to the high seas before a storm.
Your eyes are like that, did you know? Well they are.
How many minutes ago was I? Twenty?
Had I brought my feelings up to then?
It doesn't matter."
Buttercup still could not look at him.
The sun was rising behind her now;
she could feel the heat on her back,
and it gave her courage.
"I love you so much more now than twenty minutes ago
that there cannot be comparison.
I love you so much more now than when you opened you hovel door,
there cannot be comparison.
There is no room in my body for anything but you.
My arms love you, my ears adore you,
my knees shake with blind affection.
My mind begs you to ask it something so it can obey.
Do you want me to follow you for the rest of your days? I will do that.
Do you want me to crawl? I will crawl. .."
excerpt from "The Princess Bride" by William Goldman
All photographs by Nirrimi Joy Hakanson