I’m an introvert. I married an extrovert.

Opposites attract, I suppose, because (yes, I know it’s cliche) he completes me. All the cliches: My soul mate, my best friend, my whole world.

In other words, this girl who barely knew how to talk to live human beings (not that I’ve changed all that much since we married 30 years ago) found a great guy to share her life with.

U.S. President, Franklin D. Roosevelt, once said, “If civilization is to survive, we must cultivate the science of human relationships—the ability of all peoples, of all kinds, to live together, in the same world at peace.”

That’s not always easy. Relationships often come with a hefty share of heartache along with the joy. Relationships can thrive or fail miserably; they can be healthy or toxic; they can last a lifetime or a breathless moment. But we need them. Even introverts like me.

Two of our stories this month—“Sine, Cosine,” and “A Thousand Butterflies”—are both about a lover watching a loved one suffer.

Two—“Fairy-tale Ending,” and “How to Confront the Sphynx Haunting Your Garden”—are about lonely characters who long for relationships.

The wonderful thing about each pair of stories is the varying directions they take us through those relationships.

We hope you enjoy them with a friend, relative, or lover of your own!