DISCLAIMER: Babylon 5 and its characters are the property of J. Michael Straczynski, Warner Brothers, PTEN, and/or TNT. This story is for entertainment purposes only and no money exchanged hands. No copyright infringement is intended.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
Well she was dying, again. It was bound to happen; in the past she had expected it more than once. Had even, in her darker moments, imagined how it would come about. Never in her youth had she thought it would be from this, old age; war, accident, even suicide . . . but old age? Her? It seemed impossible.
She wondered who would mourn for her. No, mourn wasn't the right word. She was Ranger One, every Ranger everywhere would mourn for her. No, what she wanted to know was who would miss her. Who would feel a loss when she was gone? Thanks to the miracle of modern Minbari medicine she had outlived all her friends from her youth. Franklin, Garibaldi, even Zack had all died years before.
Delenn. She decided. Delenn would miss her. Delenn, whom she had taught the secrets of human hair care so long ago. Delenn, who now brushed her hair every morning, allowing her a few moments without the pain of her arthritis. Delenn would miss her.
It was a comforting thought, knowing that someone would miss you when you were gone. It gave her heart some semblance of peace in her last moments.
She would be missed. It was a good thought to die with.
So was it worth it? A familiar voice, not a voice, something deeper than a voice, something that penetrated a sense deeper than hearing, echoed around/within her. In the end was it worth all the pain?
Talia? The joy that came from recognizing the not-voice was all encompassing. Talia, is that you?
All the emotions that came from embracing someone you love came bubbling up within her. It was a strange sensation, knowing you were being held, feeling the emotions that the comfort allowed you, but now feeling the weight of the arms or smelling the person you knew was holding you.
Yes, yes Susan it's me. The joy was so powerful it made her want to cry. And then she felt it, the release of crying but not the touch of tears running down her face.
I missed you so much! The emotions of someone stroking her hair, but not of the fingers on her scalp or even the pressure on her head.
I know, Talia soothed, I know. Susan swam in the turbulent sea of her emotions, allowing herself to finally be soothed by a presence as true and comforting as the tide. Finally emotionally exhausted and basking in the afterglow of the none-cry Susan wrapped her emotions around the presence of Talia and sent her a love-kiss.
What happened? She asked. Where am I? She meant.
The illusions of the limitations that we place on ourselves and call life have dispersed. It wasn't Talia who said this, or rather it was Talia but so much more.
I died, Susan simplified.
Yes. It was just Talia this time, her none-voice laced with amusement.
Mama? Papa? Ganya? She said. John? Michael? Stephen? Her emotions continued. She didn't want to leave Talia but she needed to know.
The part of you that wants to be with me is with me. Again, not-just-Talia said. It made sense; it explained why she felt such a sense of peace.
Marcus? She had to ask.
The part of you that wants to be with him is with him. The memory of the bitter taste of regret fluttered through her being.
He's dead? All those years in cryo . . .
Eventually. Susan took in that fact and accepted that she was where she was supposed to be and the sense of peace returned ten fold.
What now then? She asked, both surrounded by and wrapped around Talia. She felt Talia laugh.
Always move forward huh Susan? A love-kiss, a love-hug. When we're ready we embrace the illusion of limitations.
We live again? Susan tried to feel time, a minute had passed, a hundred years, time had moved backwards.
Yes. The simple answer was enough. Then a thought occurred to her.
Will we be together? Another thought occurred to her. We've always been together. She wasn't surprised when she realized her none-voice wasn't her own. It was just like Talia's had been. It was her but not just her. So when do we go back?
Whenever. A love-kiss, a love-hug, a love-other. So was it worth it? She asked again. In the end was it worth all the pain?
Somewhere, Sometime, Everywhere, Everytime, two souls connected once again in a place they had connected a million times before and would connect a million times again, and found the happiness that they lost.
Can death be sleep, when life is but a dream,
And scenes of bliss pass as a phantom by?
The transient pleasures as a vision seem,
And yet we think the greatest pain's to die.
How strange it is that man on earth should roam
And lead a life of woe, but not forsake
His rugged path; nor dare he view alone
His future doom which is to awake.
John Keats "On Death"
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