And you're not leaving," she said. "Promise me." It was as if she had asked him to promise to keep breathing, to notice sunshine, to permit the spinning of the earth. What choice did he have? Even if he left her, she would be camped in his heart, an insistent and willful presence. She would match her strides to his on any journey he ever took; she would lie beside him on any bed. Amalie, he said, "that's the easiest promise I've ever had to make.