The Short Fic Weekly Challenge Thread!
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09.26.2012 , 10:20 AM |
Affection, feat. A'tro and Quinn. No class storyline spoilers, but it does have spoilers for recent events of my fic, Afterimages.
A’tro stood in a glade in a pine forest. On one side, nature had piled boulders upward into a mound, over which a cascade of water spilled down into a clear, perfect pool. It appeared to be late afternoon; a pale yellow sun hovered near the horizon, and the sky was a breathtaking splendor of lavender and orange.
Arms encircled her shoulders, drawing her close against a body behind her.
“It’s beautiful, isn’t it?” Quinn murmured, resting his chin against the top of her head. “I don’t normally admire scenery, but…”
“It’s lovely,” A’tro agreed.
Quinn held her more tightly. “Not as lovely as you.”
She laughed softly, startled by the comment. “You’re lying,” she accused. “I look awful.”
“Not here. Not to me.”
She found herself suddenly unable to bear not being able to see him, and she twisted around in his hold. She reached up to touch his face, running her fingertips over the familiar contours.
He regarded her with stormy blue eyes, a faint smile on his lips. “I do love you,” he said quietly. “I hope you’re aware of that fact.”
A’tro’s hands went from his face to his body as she slid her arms around him, squeezing him with all of her strength. “I know,” she said. “I love you too. I always will.”
Quinn moved one hand against the back of her head, running his fingers through her hair. She stood on her toes to meet him as he leaned forward and kissed her tenderly.
“Oh, Malavai,” she whispered when he drew back. “I don’t know if I can do this.”
“You can,” he told her firmly. “You can, and you will, because you are strong.”
A’tro felt tears start to gather in her eyes. “Is this even real?”
Quinn kissed her again. “It is if you want it to be,” he said seriously.
“I do,” she said, her voice trembling. “I do…”
“Then it is real,” Quinn said with a smile. He held her for a moment longer, then gently pushed her away. “Time to go, my love. Don’t fret. I’ll be waiting, I promise.”
A’tro’s eyes snapped open, and she bolted upright, breathing hard. Looking around, she saw only the familiar darkness of her bedroom.
With a sigh, she sank back down into her lonely bed. She reached for Quinn’s pillow and hugged it against her, as she had done every night since his death. The pain had mostly faded, but a lingering echo remained constantly at the edges of her awareness.
She buried her face in the pillow, feeling a lump rise in her throat. Since that night on the balcony, she had not cried once. It seemed to her that she had exhausted her capacity for tears. But now, remembering the dream, she felt hot liquid burn in her eyes and slip silently across her face.
I want it to be real,
she thought sadly.
I want to believe…
There's always lightning.