DISCLAIMER: Hex and its characters are the property of Sky One.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Above and Beyond
By fickitten


The thing is, Thelma knows for certain, that they'll always go above and beyond what's expected to help each other out. She knows this the same way she knows that part of her heart will always belong to Cassie; the way she knows she can't completely hate Azazeal, much as she'd like to, because despite the fact that he's a manipulative bastard, hell bent on destroying the-world-as-she-knows-it, he gave her the chance to say goodbye, and she'll always be grateful for that.

Their futures -- Azazeal's, Malachi's, Leon's, Ella's, her own -- seem inextricably entwined and Thelma knows she'll stay with Ella for the rest of her days on Earth. The success of their shared mission will result in the end of her existence and she's sort of a little bit worried about how Ella will cope, given that her death will take Ella's number of true friends down to one.

Thelma thought she'd be more prepared for death by now, given that she's lived with the threat for so long, but she finds herself strangely reticent when she has to face it. Cassie is no longer around to tie her to Earth, but Ella binds her here just as firmly, and she cares a little bit more than she thinks is wise, given Leon.

She has no idea how long Leon and Ella will last. She thinks not long, if she judges it by their screaming fights, Ella's twitchy restlessness and Leon's growing indifference.

She'll be there, whatever happens.

Ella doesn't generally consider herself a coward, but she admits she deserves the label when it comes to Thelma. And maybe Leon, too. She stays with him because he loves her and because 'loving' Leon is easy, really, when she breaks it down. She's the strongest person in their relationship and they'll never be equals, no matter what Leon thinks. Not because she's centuries old, while he's merely a child, but because he can't quite match her. No matter what she's said, they aren't a perfect fit.

Eventually Leon will realise that -- the arguments they've been having lately are the beginning of the end for them -- and he'll leave. She thinks it would be for the best, even though the thought makes her feel guilty. He's tried so hard to be the person he thinks she needs, never quite understanding that the perfect example of that person was hovering in the background all along.

He never saw that Thelma is about as close to a perfect match for Ella as Ella will ever find, even if it took her several weeks to acknowledge to herself. No matter what Thelma thinks, Ella has never slept with another woman. Until Thelma, she's never wanted to.

She thinks of the Book of Orakaia, of the spell she's bookmarked that would allow them to touch. She's too much of a coward to cast the spell. She can't guarantee the results, can't guarantee Thelma's over Cassie, and can't afford to lose her friend.

There are threads of guilt woven into the very fabric of their friendship, and Thelma's sometimes surprised that either of them manage to stay sane amidst the tangle of it. Sometimes, when she sits down and thinks about it, she realises that, logically, she should hate Ella with the fiery passion of a thousand suns, given that Ella has murdered not one but two people she's loved.

She admits Cassie assisted in her own death. Even Thelma can't blame Ella for Cassie's last ditch attempt to protect Malachi, or her death-wish dive under the blade Ella wielded with perfect precision. She should blame Ella for Maya's death and she did, for a while, lost in her own pain and bitterness. But then the hatred and anger just... went away.

Ella isn't too good at the friendship thing, Thelma finds that painfully obvious, but she's drawn to Ella anyway and she can't really bring herself to deny it. She's been lusting after Ella -- sometimes quietly, sometimes not -- ever since she walked into the dining hall, but she's forced herself to admit that Ella just might be straight after all, something she thinks she'd find easier to accept if Ella didn't have such lousy taste in men.

She doesn't see the way Ella watches her sometimes, or the way Leon watches Ella watching with jealousy blazing in his eyes. She does know that one day their little trio will be torn apart. She doesn't know that she'll be the reason.

Ella cast the spell that would allow her to touch Thelma three weeks before Leon finally left, arguing that it would be a huge help in the upcoming battle with Malachi. The spell's effects were limited to Ella and Thelma but that was all they needed, and Thelma's joy at being able to touch again was enough to convince her she'd made the right choice.

Deep down, she accepts that the real reasons behind it were purely selfish. She wanted to know what it was like to touch Thelma, and what it felt like to be touched by her, outside of dreams. She didn't count on the temptation factor or her sudden, inexplicable and unconscious habit of casually touching Thelma whenever they passed near each other.

Thelma keeps her spirits up whenever the drain of the battle takes its toll, always ready with a joke, or sarcastic quip, that will have her smiling even when she doesn't want to. She provides hugs that make Ella's skin tingle and the undemanding, comforting company that Ella desperately needs.

She isn't surprised when Leon finally packs up what meagre belongings he has, out here in the craziness that is the world she lives in. She cries, but her tears are only for him, and the time he wasted trying to be someone he could never be.

Ella clings to Thelma, to the many things that will link them forever, and tries to not think of what she'll lose if she wins this fight.

The End

Return to Hex Fiction

Return to Main Page