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life goes on, long after the thrill of living is gone

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If there's one thing Quentin knows for sure, it's that life may hurt, but it goes on regardless. 

He lost his little girl, his baby, his Sara, not once, not twice, but three times now and he doesn't think he'll ever get used to what's happened to her. 

He's lost his marriage and, on more than one occasion, his sobriety, to say nothing of his good professional name. 

He's lost Laurel at times, mostly because of his own stubbornness, his refusal to see her point of view. And he's lost her too through no fault of her own, when the pain of Oliver and Sara's betrayal and death drove her into herself, and again after the Undertaking where losing Tommy had dimmed a light in her eyes that he'd long since started taking for granted. 

But in the midst of all this hurt, all this heartbreak, life went on. Criminals were put away, bills were paid, the every day mundanities of life crept past. 

And he didn't realise how much the thrill of living was gone until one night when he was nursing a glass of water at a fancy bar and a glamorous woman in a tight dress struck up a conversation with him. 

He's not the kind of man who waxes poetic, who believes in love at first sight. But he knows there was something there, something special, from the very first moment he'd given her his hand and she'd told him her name. 

He hadn't felt a thrill like that in a long time. 

He'd thought it might disappear, that it was just a case of two lonely people meeting, connecting. But it's more than that, far more. 

Donna makes him laugh, makes him smile, makes him pull her close in a crowded room when her lipstick is on his cheek without him caring who is watching. 

When she cries, he wants to hurt whoever has hurt her and when she smiles up at him and he wants to smile straight back at her. 

And when she sleeps in his arms, he sleeps sounder than he has in years. 

Life doesn't hurt as much anymore, and if it does, he's learning that it's easier to face with her beside him.