"Of course I care! And Lyneth was helping me, which is a lot better than just insulting me."
"I know it's hard to hear, but I am trying to help you" Hollí said softly. "I'm saying these things because I don't want to see you get hurt."
"I thought.... Why does none of it make any sense?"
Hollí wanted to groan in exasperation---she wasn't some philosopher to be pondering the great questions of life---but she managed to resist the impulse, and did her best to answer. "Because it's love. If it made sense, it wouldn't be special. And if it wasn't special, what would be the point?" she said. Then she stepped forwards, and lightly laid a hand on Krystia's arm. "I know you feel somewhat alone, but trust me, you're not. No one knows how these things work, we all just muddle through as best we can."
Just wait until you're my age, and your only choices are hooking up with someone so much younger than you that they might as well be a child---and who'll still almost certainly die before you do---or else trying desperately to find a member of your own species who is not only roughly the same age as you, but actually someone you like, Hollí thought to herself. There was a reason she generally avoided romance altogether, these days. (To her eternal shame, once, in a particularly low point of her life, she had started to find Jed and/or Forge attractive. That had been a wake-up call).
She paused for a moment before continuing. "Caiden is a good man---you chose well. It's just that if you want to have a chance with him, you're going to have to do things differently" she said. "So, a couple words of advice. First: take the pressure off, stop being so clingy and forward... and on a related note, try and stay out of his blind spot. Caiden's too polite to say it---or even really show it---but you've been making him feel rather awkward. Second: love can't be forced; it takes time, it takes building a rapport. Unfortunately, like so many things in life, there are no shortcuts in love. So let him get to know you---naturally, casually. And once you've built up that rapport, that closeness, then you can try and turn it into something more."