Her heart leaps at the knock on the door. She’s been eagerly anticipating this. Anya checks her make-up in the mirror. Taking a deep breath in she opens the door to see Jack, throwing him the biggest hug she’s ever given.
“How have you been?” he asks.
“Other than this big gaping hole you’ve left me? Really well.”
Jack smiles. He felt somewhat the same. Anya’s always completed him and it’s been way too long since he’s seen her. But they quickly grow quiet, not sure what to say. There is more feeling than words can speak for.
Anya pours him a brandy on the rocks in a whiskey glass, just as he likes it. He waits for her to talk, but she can’t decide where to start. So many memories. So much love and regret. Hopefully he hasn’t come just to kill her, like the last time, though the thought hardly bothers her. Being around him brings a rest to her spirit that nothing else does. She can’t help but wonder what he’s feeling right now, but she doesn’t ask. He might just lie anyway. She walks to the window and stares out at the city view that she’s grown to love. This might be the last time she sees it. Jack approaches from behind sweeping the hair from her neck. Deja vu.
“Looks like you finally got yourself a nice place,” he comments.
“No holes in the walls here,” she smiles.
Unlike last time, she doesn’t hesitate about the kiss. The night heats up as they make their way to the bedroom and for a few precious moments things are just like they used to be.
“Will you ever forgive me?” he asks.
“For what?” she pretends the obvious is no big deal.
“I wasn’t sure if I should come, I thought you might…” he trails off.
“Show you how much I miss you?” she smirks, then honestly states, “I never held it against you, so there’s nothing to forgive. But if you try it again I will tear your throat out with my talons.”
“No you won’t. There’s no way to follow me to where I’d be going.”
She smiles with the smallest laugh and tosses herself in to kiss him again. The connection, the chemistry. Her pain, his power. They’ve missed each other more than words will ever explain.
The next morning she wakes with him still asleep beside her. He was always awake before she was. Her heart speeds up. She checks to be sure he’s still alive. He is. She swallows a knot in her throat. She’s waking up beside the person she loves most in this world and she dare not even cuddle him. It’ll make parting that much harder. Instead she’ll make sure he feels welcome. She gets up and heads to the washroom. As she goes about brushing her teeth she prepares him a towel and a new bar of soap. She places an unopened toothbrush by the sink. When she walks from the washroom he’s getting up from the bed.
“Help yourself to the shower if you wish. Would you like coffee?” She can’t even remember how he takes his coffee. He ponders it moment.
“Thank you, but I really should be leaving.”
Right, of course, how silly of her. She always did get carried away thinking she can offer him more than just sex. She should know better. She ties her robe and walks him to the door.
“Won’t you stay a while? Catch up on lost time?”
“I can’t,” his tone is apologetic. As much as he’d love to spend more time with her, it wouldn’t be right.
She nods. She understands. He’s not available.
They are quiet still, but it is only because the bond between them dare not be vocalized. Would it make it seem less than it is? Or would it hit deeper than either want to admit? Anya begins to wonder if she’s crazy thinking they have anything at all. He slips on his leather jacket and notices something in her expression. He comes close, embracing her into one last kiss,
“You’re not crazy.”
But he still opens the front door. He still walks out of it.
He turns to look at her, hoping it’s not going to be an awkward conversation.
“You’re welcome to come back, whenever you like.”
He cracks that beautiful smile she wishes she could keep.
Anya is the one woman he can count on never shutting him out. Unless perhaps, she were to get too close.
*this story has been edited and rewritten since originally posted.
About The Nepenthe
About this blog – Passion and Chaos
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Artwork : I pieced together the picture of Jack from 3 different images, altered, used an art filter, and touched it up. The other images are CC free use stock photos, altered and put through the art filter, with some touch ups by hand to ‘the couple’.