Part 08

I put the ring on my finger and the world started spinning. I saw flashes of blinding lights and it seemed as though I was travelling through a multicolored tunnel. Finally, I hit the ground.

I got up immediately and looked around.

"Oliver, watch out!" I heard Black Canary.

Oh, shit, I thought. Was I already too late?!

I turned around and saw Oliver firing at a Locian, but there was another enemy, right behind him and he was the one holding the deadly weapon.

Oliver's and mine eyes met and he frowned as he wondered what I was doing there when I wasn't a moment ago. I should've been still behind the door. And I was.

I had no choice but to get to him, grab his hand and put the ring back on. I knew there was no time for warnings, no time for pushing him away from the range of the shot.

The world swirled once again and we hit the floor of my bedroom in the mansion.

Only I wasn't done, I deliberately thought of coming here while still being in the past.

"Jess… what the…?" Oliver started, looking around, completely dumbfounded, but I shushed him and grabbed a pen and a sheet of paper.

I scribbled a message to myself.

I'd just done something bad and I knew it. I took Oliver and wanted to travel back to my time with him.

"Jessica!" he called me by my full name and I could tell that he was angry.

"Do you trust me?" I asked him while leaving the paper on my bedside table and turning to look into his hazel eyes.

He just nodded.

"Good," I said and took his hand once again.

He wasn't stupid. He must've figured out that we were travelling in time by now.

We appeared in the very same room, but there was no paper on my bedside table.

Oliver was there with me, so I knew the past me had understood and listened and…

Only I still had the memories of Oliver being killed.

I'd just undone the past, I realized with horrification. And I remembered all of it. I'd done something unforgivable. I'd taken Ollie from before he'd been killed to this time, this reality, a few days later. Would there be consequences? Clark always said there were… And Clark was always the one remembering the alternative past or future because he'd changed it, I realized and calmed myself down. Of course I remembered.

I couldn't think about it anymore as it was all so confusing. Also, I didn't have time to think. The pain in my heart was gone because Oliver was standing right next to me, looking at me and I could tell that he was confused, too.

"Thank God you're all right!" I just exhaled and threw myself into his arms. What else could I do, really?

It surprised him, but he hugged me back.

"Jess, what was that? Did you just…?" When he pulled away, he looked at the ring that was still on my finger.

I took it off and just threw it on my bed, not wanting to hold it in my hand anymore.

"I'm sorry, Ollie, but yes, I traveled back in time," I answered.

"But… why? Did something happen?"

"Yes, something did happen. The moment I pulled you out… Oliver, you were about to be killed."

There was silence as he was processing those words.

"Wh-what?" he finally asked. "Are you serious?"

"Yes. You were dead and I had… I had to do something!" I raised my voice when tears filled my eyes. "I just couldn't… let you go… leave you… the eternity… and they were all devastated… and… and Clark… Clark confiscated all the rings and forbade to go back… but he didn't know I stole one from him…"

"You came back in time to save me?" Oliver made sure, completely shocked. He still couldn't believe it.

"Yes, why wouldn't I?" I asked. Why was he so surprised? I wondered.

Only then I was the one who was in shock because Oliver just grabbed my face into his hands and pressed his lips to mine, kissing me.

It was so unexpected that I didn't pull away right that moment. I just stood there, trying to figure out what was happening.

When I did so, I woke up, opened my eyes and pushed him away.

"What the hell are you doing?!" I asked.

We were just standing there, looking at each other.

"I…" he finally managed to articulate. "I'm sorry… I-I thought… never mind…"

I had too much on my mind already, so I didn't push him to tell me why he'd done that exactly. I needed to get back to Watchtower. And I was scared of what I would find there.

I opened the door and I walked inside.

They were all there, just like I'd left them when I'd decided to save Oliver.

"Oliver?!" Chloe was genuinely surprised. "Where have you been?! You just… they said you just disappeared from the battle and… that Jess was with you, but then she didn't remember it and…"

"I'm fine. At least I'm fine now," Oliver just said, avoiding looking at me.

I caught Lex's eyes from across the room and I felt cold dread in my stomach. It was as though he knew what I'd done. As though he'd suspected it all this time.

"Jessica?" that was Clark and I felt even more scared on hearing my name being spoken in such a cold tone. "What did you do?" he just asked harshly.

"Did you just give the speech about time traveling and how we all can't do that under any circumstances?" I suddenly asked him, making sure. Maybe if he hadn't, then I still…

"Yes, and you weren't here. You called and said you'd be late and that we should start without you. Where were you?"

I closed my eyes and took a deep breath.

"You went back in time, didn't you?" I heard Lex's cold voice.

Why everyone was so mad at me?!

"Yes," I answered because I didn't see any point in lying now. "Yes, I did and guess what? I would do it again!"

"Jess, you did something inexcusable!"

"Oh, I didn't know I murdered someone!" I answered him back, furious. "Clark, stop acting like this! We all know how many times you did it to save someone and you were the one to send the Legion, after all!"

"Because it had to be done! It already happened that the Legion came to us! I needed to send them to create the future we're living in now! And you of all people should know what time traveling means! I lost my father!" Clark yelled at me.

"So you blame me! I should've known!"

"No, I don't!" Clark screamed. "I never did! I blame myself! It would've been an impossible choice! I wouldn't have been able to pick you or him and you know it! I never blamed you! I blamed myself, Jor-El and his tests!"

"This is your fucking friend!" I roared, pointing at Oliver. "You would let him die just because of your rules?!"

"Well, you've taken care of that already, haven't you?" I heard Lex's voice and it was like acid.

"What's wrong with you?" I turned to him when frowning. "What did I do that is so despicable? I saved a life!"

"And there will be a consequence you might have to pay!" Clark was unyielding.

"Then it's my problem, not yours!"

"Guys, guys!" Lois, extremely pregnant, was standing by Clark's side, waving her hands. "Quit it! I understand, Clark, that Jess did something bad, but in overall she did what you didn't have the guts to do. She brought Oliver back because he apparently died, didn't he?"

"Yes, in the battle," I confirmed.

"So all's good. You should just promise you won't do this again, Jess, and we'll be fine."

"Lois…" Clark started in a warning tone.

"This my father's life we're talking about!" Connor suddenly screamed. It was as though he'd been in too big of a shock just a moment before when we'd been all arguing. "He was dead and Jessica brought him back. I say we should be happy! Mom?" He turned to Chloe, looking for her support.

Only Chloe remained silent.

Seriously, what was going on between her and Ollie? Had it been happening for some time now? Had I not seen it? Or was it all new?

"Oliver, I'm sorry," Clark suddenly said. "I am sorry you needed to hear all of that. You know that I would never prefer you being dead over being alive, don't you?"

"I do, Clark," Oliver just sighed heavily. "I really do and I do understand your anger. There's no hard feelings."

"Good, because it's really nothing personal. I'm really glad you're here safe and sound. What worries me is that Jessica may pay the price for this."

"Then you're not the only one," Ollie muttered.

"Clark, wouldn't you do this for Lois?" I used my last argument. "Wouldn't you?" I prompted.

Clark just closed his eyes.

"Because you already did, remember?" I kept on talking. "You came back in time to get her the blue kryptonite."

"Only it was different. I didn't change anything…"

"I can't believe it!" I raised my voice again. "Why are you like this?"

"Jess, I will need the ring back," he just said.

"Well, I don't have it on me!"

"Do you have any idea that you betrayed me? Betrayed everything I stand for? I thought you were by my side!" he finally expressed his true feelings.

"Oh, great, you feel betrayed because I did something against your word?! You're not the world ruler, Clark! The fact that you have powers doesn't make you better than us, maybe luckier, but not better! I am your friend and I always have been, but it doesn't mean that I have to automatically agree with everything you say!"

"If I knew Oliver died…" Clark stopped for a moment, "well, he did… ok, then if he was dead, you know well that I would want nothing more than to safe him. If you were dead, I would like to save you and the same goes to Lex and everyone else in this room. But if I did this, then all the people…"

"…around the world would keep coming to you and asking you to bring their loved ones back! I know. I heard it before," I finished after him angrily. "And I know that I did something wrong. I do know it. But it's done, Clark. If you want to change that, you will have to go back yourself and let Oliver die. Can you do this?"

Clark didn't say anything. I knew there was a battle going on inside him and I almost felt sorry for him.

"No," he finally said and looked into Oliver's eyes. "I wouldn't be able to let you die."

Oliver just nodded. He knew it. We all knew it.

"But how…" Clark stopped as he was close to breaking. "How could I come back in time for Ollie if I didn't do it for Jimmy?" He turned to Chloe. "I am so, so sorry, Chloe, that you are the one who seems to be hurting here the most, but… I just… how that would ever be fair?"

"It's all right, Clark," Chloe just said, tears finally breaking in her eyes. "I forgave you a long time ago. I do understand."

"But I'm still sorry," Clark confessed. "And I know I should've told you that years ago…"

"It's really all right," she repeated.

"Guys," Lois cut in. "Guys, I think… I think that my waters just broke… and I will not push that baby out of me!" There was evident fear in her voice.

"I'll get you to your doctor," Clark said, his attention immediately shifting and now it was focused only on his wife. "He can do the c section. Just hold on."

They were gone in no time.

"They'll expect us in the hospital," Chloe said. "I'll go pack Lois's stuff."

The room was slowly being deserted.

Lex disappeared somewhere and I then I noticed him talking to Lily. She was still shaken and Connor was helping his mother now. To be honest, it kind of pained me that this one time Lex hadn't supported me. Why? Was his hatred towards Oliver that strong? Was he mad at me for endangering myself when travelling back to save his alleged enemy?

"Oliver…" I noticed him, still standing where he'd been a few minutes before, still adjusting to this new situation. "Oliver, I think we need to talk," I said and went over to him.

"I'm sorry, Jess. I guess it was a spur-of-the-moment thing," he told me idly, but I knew him far too well not to notice his fake tone. "Just like you going back for me, wasn't it?" he asked and then without letting me answer, he added, "I need to go."

"Jessica?" Lex called me. "Are you going?"

His voice still sounded weird and I really didn't know what his real problem was.

"Lex, what is it? You can tell me. What's bothering you?" I asked when making my way to him. I didn't know how many understatements I could take. And I loved him. I loved him so much and for so long that I needed any fights to be resolved immediately.

"You came back for him and that wasn't your job, that's all," he said in a harsh voice.

"I came back to save a friend, Lex," I corrected. "And friends do care about each other. I would come back just the same if it was you or Clark."

"No," Lex said and I looked at him like he was crazy. "Lois would come back for Clark," he just finished and turned to the exit, leaving me there, mouth agape.

When exactly did I find myself in a madhouse?

In the end, all the rings were destroyed.

I didn't protest. I knew it was the right thing to do, but I still didn't regret saving Oliver.

It all came to past and we didn't mention it anymore.

I knew we weren't and couldn't be any better than the rest of the people on this planet. Everyone lost someone sometimes and the ring couldn't be available to all of them. That would only create chaos and destroy the very history of our race.

My friends soon forgot about what I'd done because their attention was now focused on Lois and her newly-born baby girl.

Now I, Lex, Oliver, Chloe, Tess and Emil were gathered in Lois and Clark's apartment. She'd called all of us there to tell us something important.

"I'm glad you came!" she welcomed us with the baby in her arms. "I came up with a great idea and…" she started only to be shut down by her husband.

"Lois, you can't possibly be serious," Clark interrupted her. "I will not do that to you!"

"Your part will be all pleasure!" she huffed at him. "Shut up, so I can present the idea!"

"But it's crazy!"

I had to admit, my curiosity was piqued.

"I found a way to help us all and help all the people in this world," Lois started proudly when sitting on a sofa with the baby girl in her arms. "We all know now how fragile a life can be, even our lives," she added. "It was so close… so close and Oliver wouldn't be here with us today."

I deliberately avoided Oliver's eyes and everybody's around me. I was just looking at Lois, that was safe. And at her daughter. More safe.

"Emil told me that this baby will probably have powers just like her father," Lois informed us. "They're supposed to manifest during puberty just like Clark's did and then there'll be two… well, no Supermen, there will be also a Superwoman in this world."

Tess laughed and I felt lighter as things among us weren't so strained anymore.

"The only problem is that both Clark and Lara can't be everywhere at once and-and I am ready to sacrifice myself to raise a super race of children," she finished.

"Sorry, what?" Chloe asked, completely dumbfounded. "Lois, are you actually saying that you want to keep producing children with Clark to keep the world protected? You want to breed warriors? But-but you hate being pregnant! You hate children!"

"I love my little girl!" Lois protested, cradling her baby in her laps.

"Well, yes, because she's yours, but with all due respect, I remember you complaining about kids. You always wanted a career instead and now, suddenly you're willing to give it all up, so… you could have dozens of children?" Chloe was so surprised that her eyes resembled two big plates.

"Well, I was worried about my body before, but after the VA appeared on the market, I don't have to anymore. I'll just keep doing what I've done with Lara. I'll get pregnant, wear blue kryptonite, have a c section and use VA to heal."

"Lois, Chloe's right and this is just crazy!" Clark said again. "I won't do this to you! You can't just fix everything! Life never was and never will be perfect!"

"I realize that it'll be a huge sacrifice on my part, Clark, but I want to do this. I will be happy, too! You created the VA, you made the fatal dream of humanity come true, so we need to protect their lives now. We can't let them see their loved ones die and them live without them eternally. They'll start committing suicides! Can you even imagine what could happen?"

"My answer is still no," Clark said adamantly and folded his arms on his chest.

"I don't see why Lois shouldn't do it," Lex suddenly spoke and we all looked at him in shock. "What? It's not like those kids won't be loved. A mother always loves her children. Besides, they really can do a lot of good in this world. Clark, Lois doesn't have to bear an army as Chloe said. She can have just a few more kids. What's the problem? She probably would have them anyway." He shrugged.

I sent Lex an outraged look. "Is that what you expect from me?" I asked, nearly spitting with anger. "To give you more kids in the future just because we can't die? Lex, this is… this is just… I'm not some fucking machine for making children!"

"Don't put words into my mouth that I did not say," Lex turned to me. "I am not pushing you to do anything, I'm just saying…"

"Lois, quite frankly, I don't know why you called us here," Tess said, interrupting. "It's your decision, it's always supposed to be your decision."

"If you came up with the idea and wanted us here to say no, so you could feel like you're not failing the people you think you can help, that was a bad call," Oliver said resolutely. "And if you really want to do this and you want us to back you up in order to convince Clark, then I also think it's not a good idea. It's should be only up to you two. It's your marriage, your possible children. It's not a business transaction." There! That was the perfect answer, I thought.

"But-but… just think about it!" Lois asked pitifully.

"I think that you should think about it. At least sleep on it," Chloe gave her the perfect advice. "Or wait a few years until Lara grows up and then decide. I promise you, Lo, she's just one girl, but she'll still give you hell."

"Oh, that I can totally agree with," I said. "Trust me, Lois, I'm the only one here who has two children instead of just one and still, I don't want to do this ever again. They'll take all your time and you won't even have time to shower. When considering you want to have a dozen of them, I don't think you'll manage to convince Clark to help make them while you'll stop having time to shave your legs."

They all laughed, even Lois and I felt much better that I managed to make such a joke, although it was the truth.

"I wish you stopped feeling like you need to prove something to me, Lois," Clark told her and squatted by her side. "I love you and I will never regret anything. The way of living has changed, yes, but it's not our fault that people still die sometimes."

"We should focus on peace, not war," Oliver said and stood up. "I guess this meeting is over. I'm not really sure what I'm doing here, but anyway… I need to go."

He was acting weird recently and I didn't know the reason. Not that I wanted to talk to him seriously again. Nope, nah ah.

"JeXCorp should start looking for a planet like the Earth," Lex said, "just in case. I know people, even if they can live now on other planets, they would like to have an alternative of living on a ground similar to the one they were raised on."

"With that I agree," Clark backed him up. "I just need to talk to the Council again."

I was sitting in the mansion's study, trying to relax.

The Locians weren't a threat anymore and we were allegedly free of worry.

Only I wasn't. Or maybe I just couldn't go back to the state I'd been in before it all happened.

I didn't know what was wrong with me, what changed. Maybe time would show, but I hated to just wait and see. I missed the carefree woman who'd been so madly in love. What happened to me? In a matter of weeks or so, Lex and our kids had been kidnapped. I'd gotten them all back, but then something had changed once and for all. Then the Locians had attacked. The Legion had been formed. Oliver had died and I'd saved him.

I couldn't pinpoint the exact moment when I'd started feeling different.

I just turned on my tablet to see the news.

The speaker was talking about the imprisonment of the Locians and the suspension of their rights. They'd broken the deal with the Council, so they needed to be punished for that.

"We might have given up, but we are warning you. There is something coming," their leader was just saying. "Something you will not see coming. Your doom."

What was that? Was it just an empty threat? I started wondering.

The interviewer thought so. She said there was no danger.

And if there was, I would be one of the first to know, wouldn't I? I was so close to Clark, even if he might've been still angry with me.

The door opened and I heard laughter.

I turned in my seat just to see Alex and Imra stepping inside.

"Oh…" Alex stopped on seeing me. "Mom, I'm sorry, I thought you were out. Wasn't dad supposed to take out for dinner tonight?"

"Something at work came up," I said. It was a lame excuse and we both with Lex knew it, yet I was relieved not having to go. I didn't know why, but I didn't feel like going out with him and pretending that everything was all right when apparently something wasn't. The problem was that I didn't know what it was. I needed to talk to Lex, but he either kept avoiding me or brushing me off.

"Are you two…" I started, standing up and looking at my son in Imra's company, "dating?" I finally finished the question.

"Well… I wanted to say something in the right moment… I didn't want you to find out like this," Alex admitted. "Sorry."

"Oh, no, you have nothing to be sorry about," I said with a smile and came closer to them. "Actually, I'm happy for you two and I hope it'll work out."

It was true. If a woman was to appear for real in my son's life, I would want nothing more than for her to be Imra.

Maybe at least one thing seemed right in this mess.

Lex came back from work extremely late again.

"Do you even realize that Christmas's coming?" I asked and I switched the lamp on.

I was sitting in the study with the only light coming from the fireplace. I wouldn't let it go this time. We needed to have a talk. We'd had too many years together to just give up on us. I actually shivered on the very thought of that.

"What?" Lex asked, not really getting me and he shed his coat.

"How long will this be going on?" I asked and stood up, facing him. "Lex, it's been two weeks and we live here as though we were strangers. Why?"

"Do you really need to ask me this?" He walked over to the liquor table and poured himself some scotch.

I didn't remember him drinking that much before. When had it started?

"Lex, I don't understand," I admitted. "What's your problem?" I came over to him and put my hand on his arm. "We used to be happy and suddenly… we're not anymore. We're growing apart and I want to know why."

"You're so fucking blind," he suddenly rasped and gulped down all the alcohol from the glass.

"Excuse me?!" I raised my voice, struck. I felt like he'd actually hit me.

Then I started thinking.

"Of course," I said bitterly. "It must be hard for you, Lex, to fuck the same woman for over a hundred years!"

"Oh, so you got bored with me?!" he answered back, putting the glass on the table with a clank.

"No," I told him honestly. "I've never got tired of you and us."

"Well, it didn't stop you from saving Oliver. Was life without him so unbearable?" Lex hissed, his voice was full of venom as he swirled to face me.

"Wh-what? What?!" I sputtered in a sudden surprise. "You know well that there is nothing between me and Oliver! You've been delusional about him since the moment you found out I…"

"That you were screwing him when I was dead? Maybe, but I usually don't get delusional, as you say, over nothing. I have eyes. Everyone has them, only you seem to be blind!"

"Did you know I was also sleeping with Clark when you were dead?" I asked. It wasn't a good move, but I was so angry with Lex that I wanted to inflict him pain. How could he even do this to me now, after everything we'd been through?

He just closed his eyes with a sigh. He must've known, I thought.

"I don't hold all the women you slept with against you, Lex!" I yelled at him. "And I know there might've been hundreds of them before I came along!"

"Exactly, before you came along and I never cared about any of them!" he fought back.

"How was I supposed to know that you would come back from the dead?! Hah?! HOW?! It was impossible and it happened only that one time! No one has ever done it, Lex! No one! Even now with the VA because it just preserves and heals you, it doesn't give you back your life!"

"Well, you were so eager to come back in time to save Oliver and it never occurred to you that maybe you should've done the same to save me all those years ago?!" he finally said it. I knew it was the painful truth. The thing that was driving us apart now. That it was the reason for Lex's fury and pain.

"Is that what this is about? Lex… I didn't know about the ring back then and… later on I wasn't in its possession. The thought… it never occurred to me," I answered according to the truth.

"It did," he said bitterly. "It did, but you were a coward. You were scared of what kind of a monster I'd become!"

"That is not true!"

"Of course it is!" he roared and spread his arms, throwing his hands into the air. "I was evil! I killed my father! I almost killed Clark! Who could know what would've happened if you'd saved me back then!"

"So it's a good thing that I didn't," I said in a strained voice, "because then you came back anyway and you understood what was right and what was wrong."

"Don't lecture me."

"You're still looking for an excuse! We were happy over all those years and not even once did you mention that you held a grudge against me! Then I save Oliver and suddenly, you use him to have a fight?! Admit it! You've got tired of me! What should I expect anyway? That you'd be like Clark?! You're Lex Luthor, so naturally I'm not enough for you! And how can I expect after such a long period of time spent together that we'll just keep reliving you coming back to me from the dead?! Changing for ME?!" I roared.

There was silence and I just stood there, completely overwhelmed by what just happened. We'd never before in the whole history of our relationship had such a big fight. There had been minor issues and maybe some bigger ones, but never for such a reason. We'd always been sure of our love for each other.

"You're either hide it very well or you just don't see it yourself yet," Lex said in a strangely calm and quiet voice. "You have feelings for Oliver."

"Lex, you're the only one!" I denied.

"No, you do have feelings for him. I'm not saying you're madly in love with him now, but… something has always been there. You were an item once, after all."

I was left speechless because actually, I couldn't deny that one. Still, I felt the same for Clark as I felt for Oliver! Why would Lex be so mad about it?!

"Thought so," he said and just… left.

It was the worst Christmas ever, I thought and it really meant something when I'd been through hundreds of them already.

We were all there, in the mansion, for the Christmas party. It was too late to cancel and it was also a Luthor tradition, so we had to throw it. We meaning me and Lex or maybe I should just say the people working for us, because none of us really was in the mood. Especially with Lex not talking to me.

I was just standing in the corner, watching the quests. Connor was there with Lily, Alex with Imra, Lois and Clark with their baby girl. Then I saw Chloe with Oliver and Tess with Emil. Those were all the friends I needed. And as it turned out, my friendship with them was just destroying my relationship. How did that happen? Why did it happen? I was still so confused.

Lex was there, too, but he kept his distance and didn't look at me even once. Pity, maybe if he saw me in this red dress… but again, how many times had he seen me dressed sexy, beautiful or elegant? Countless. Maybe something had just burnt out in him? The sight of him strangely wasn't doing to me what it'd been doing once, too. Now I was so numb… I loved him, I knew it deep down in my heart, but something had changed and still, I couldn't tell what it was.

"Jessica?" Imra just asked when coming over. "How are you? Are you ok?"

Everyone knew about my fight with Lex. It wasn't something we could hide, not when we were known for doing everything together, for being together all the time, inseparable.

"I'll be fine," I just said and kept on sipping the wine from the glass I was holding.

"You know, Alex and Lily are worried about you and Lex," she pointed out. "Is there something we can do to help?"

I could only shake my head.

"Frankly, I don't even know what's his problem," I admitted. "I mean, he did tell me, or maybe I should say yell, about Oliver, but… why would Lex be bothered by it now?"

"I don't know. I wish I did," Imra sighed. "There's something I wanted to tell you though. Before Clark ordered the rings to be destroyed… I… and your children… we kind of took a trip to the past," she confessed.

"What? To where?" I looked at her in fear. Was it something they'd done that had changed my relationship with Lex so drastically?

"I took them to see your wedding. I actually talked to you there," Imra confessed. "You were so happy with Lex, so in love with him."

"I remember that." I smiled to her with relief. "It's funny because you were really there. I just… I didn't tell you to go back there, too, because I felt like it was too much information."

"Well, fate brought me there anyway." She smiled. "It's a relief knowing that I didn't do anything stupid. That I was meant to do it, after all."

"Yeah, but… I don't recall seeing Alex or Lily there."

"Oh, they were there, but they stayed hidden. I didn't want to risk anything. You couldn't see them as they weren't actually born yet."

"I was pregnant with Alex," I remembered, "but it didn't show."

"I didn't know that," Imra admitted.

"Thank you," I suddenly said with gratitude. "Thank you for being there for me. For doing this for my children."

"No problem. I'm just happy I didn't get myself in trouble… Jessica, seeing you and Lex so in love and so happy… I can't believe that it could be just over now. He'll come around, you'll see." Imra took my hand and squeezed it gently.

I just smiled back to her sadly.

"There's one more thing… before I came over here, I talked to Lex and I told him this, too."

"I'm not sure it'll help, but I appreciate it anyway." I hugged her. "I'm so happy that you're here, Imra. You have no idea how much."

"I finally understand the connection we have," she informed me. "Being in the past, talking to you, even if it was just twice… I feel like I know you better. I wish I could tell you the truth when you asked whether we would ever meet again, but I couldn't."

"You did the right thing when not telling me," I assured her.

"Whatever happens, I'm here for you. Remember that."

"Thank you." I faked a smile again because I wasn't really happy about the whole situation with Lex and then I walked towards him.

"Lex," I said and put my hand on his arm, so he would turn to look at me.

"Yes?" His eyes, his voice, they were so cold that I felt like it was freezing in the room, but in fact it was actually hot.

"Imra told me…" I started.

"Yeah, she talked to me, too, but it doesn't change anything, Jessica. It's in the past. Excuse me." He just walked right past me and left the party.

I was left standing there, realizing that it was under the mistletoe and I felt tears welling up in my eyes.

Did even the greatest loves have its ending? Was that the awful true of this world? Did everything have to end eventually? Was there no forever even when you could live forever?

If we hadn't been living for so long, our love would've never ended, I realized, cursing the VA.

Had I been working so hard to preserve my love for Lex that I didn't see the flame being slowly extinguished? Slowly dying? Did we forget how real love felt like?

I'd held on desperately, believing that there was nothing and no one out there for me but Lex.

Was it healthy? Was it still true?

I would have to find out.

But first… first I needed to forget about him for a while. I needed to pull myself together and then, once I did that, rethink everything.

I went upstairs and took my stuff.

The end

AN: Don't you worry, my dear JeX lovers! What's happening to Lex, why he's acting like this and why Jessica feels differently about him will be explained in the remaining parts!

Next part - J e XMination