The Short Fic Weekly Challenge Thread!
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08.17.2012 , 04:04 PM |
Ipha and Jorgan.
Edit: Sorry, I should have mentioned spoilery for beginning of Ch 3? Whenever A-77 happens.
Had there been another way?
Was there any other choice than to break his heart?
Major Ipha Kodrevas let the empty brew bottle fall out of her hand and thunk on the floor. It rolled to join the other five she'd already consumed. It wasn't enough.
She'd liked Jaxo. The woman was funny, she was charismatic, she'd wanted to be friends. Ipha would have been okay with that, until she'd found out that Jaxo had seduced Jorgan. She hadn't seen it at first. The evenings he'd disappear, the trips he'd make to Black Sun territory during their station on Coruscant. She was his superior officer. She'd never pushed him to tell her where he was going. Even when her feelings became something other than superior to subordinate she'd never made him verbalize who called on the holo, why he made side trips to Coruscant in those early days.
She had put two and two together not long after Dorne had joined the Squad. She had innocently questioned Ipha about who was putting the stars in the Sergeant's eyes. The realization had hit her like a metric ton of plastisteel.
She'd tried to make him jealous on Nar Shaddaa. Agent Jonas Balkar with his wit and his flirtatious eyes. Jorgan had nearly lost his temper, informing her to do it on her personal time. It was the anger she wanted, but not the reason she'd wanted. Hurt and furious, her affair with Balkar had been whirlwind and passionate. She'd let it die the day they transferred off the Hutta moon. Balkar never contacted her in a personal manner again.
She began sending Jorgan away more and more. He had this diplomatic streak under all that tawny fur and corded muscle. She would send him to negotiate for her. Any planet, any moon, for anything, just to get him off the ship and off her mind.
Even when she knew Jaxo would make time to go see him, or he'd stop off to spend time with her. She still sent him away, heart broken.
Tanno Vik became a constant companion. He affected her attitude, she knew it. But he was smart, and strong, and his dark sarcasm amused her. He twisted her just a little and she liked not being quite herself because she wouldn't have to think of Jorgan wrapped around Ava Jaxo.
Jaxo had tried to extend the peace branch. Woman's intuition or whatever, Jaxo knew there was tension between them. Ipha had agreed to a night out with Jaxo and her friends, though she wasn't sure why. Jaxo had waited until everyone had left and cautiously approached Ipha. Jaxo laid it all out in a rushed breath, words nearly tripping over each other. How much she was in love with Aric. How if she had known back then maybe she wouldn't have made a move.
Ipha had been disgusted with herself. She'd told Jaxo that Jorgan was going to be with who he wanted and there wasn't a thing she could do to change his mind. She'd accepted that he didn't have feelings for her. She'd almost meant it. She let herself part on good terms with Jaxo, a tentative friendship budding between the women. Even Jorgan was more casual around her. It had almost been good.
So could she had made another decision?
The brew bottle was empty again. It dangled between her fingers and she stared into the brown glass.
Three hundred people were alive because she'd made the call she'd made. Ava Jaxo was dead.
Jorgan's heart was broken. She'd done that. She'd done that to him. It broke her own heart.
She wasn't a terrible person, was she? She'd just... made the call. Three hundred for one. The good of the many. She'd made the call because there were more lives at stake than she wanted on her shoulders. Was that selfish?
The knock on the cargo bay door made her head shoot up. She squinted and tried to focus, her heart dropping into her knees when she saw Jorgan standing there. He was eyeing the brew bottles, all... what now? Seven of them? He looked drawn and haggard. He hadn't shaved either his face or his head in a couple days.
“Sir,” he said, asking permission.
Ipha swallowed, worked her way to her feet. Toppled back down on the box and cursed.
“Sir!” He came to help her, bless him. He came to help. “Just... just sit down, alright? I... I wanted to tell you, because I need you to understand this. I know why you made the call you did. And you made the right call. Ava knew. She and I... we'd talked. She knew what it was to be a soldier. She knew it was going to be dangerous and neither of us wanted to stop any of it. She made her choice, I made mine. You made yours, and it was right. Sir.”
Ipha stared down at her feet thinking of Jaxo begging for her life in her final moments. Jaxo hadn't wanted to die. She didn't want to give her life for the Republic she served. She'd cried, she'd begged. Ipha had killed her anyway.
Jorgan didn't need to know any of that.
When he stood, she tracked his movements. “Jorgan,” she rasped when he was just far enough away. “I hope someday you mean that.”
He looked back at her, the sadness on his face a weight in her heart. Then he was gone. There wasn't enough booze.
That was harder than I thought to write.
Be to her Virtues
Be to her Faults
a little Blind.