Disclaimer: The Great Maker, JMS, and grand high Mucky Mucks own Babylon 5, I know as a truth of our age :) I am not making any money from this and no copyright infringement is intended.

Rating: PG 13 primarily for alcohol use and swearing.

Timeline: Immediately after "Divided Loyalities"

Summary: Susan faces the loss of Talia

Author's Note: A serious warning for once: this ficlit contains the assumption that Talia and Susan had arelationship. If you are at all offended by that idea, I urge you to not read this story, I only want to entertain, not offend.

This is a re-post as the first post was lost to the ether. No changes except maybe typo correction.

Feedback: I always appreciate constructive criticism. Thank you to everyone including "Triaxx2" for reviewing the first posting.

Meditations in Russian

She slumped on the small couch in her quarters, a half empty glass of vodka held loose in her hand. There was an open bottle on the table nearby, waiting in case it was needed. Blindly, she reached for the bottle and poured more clear liquid into her glass. Drops of the liquor slipped over the edges of the amber glass and fell unheeded on her hand. The bottle was returned to the table, mostly empty now.

Susan brushed her long auburn back and tilted the glass to her lips. She grimaced slightly at the burn of the liquor down her throat. She pretended that the tears that came to her eyes was from the vodka as well. Angrily, she brushed the tears away, but they continued to fall down her cheeks unbidden.

"Damn," she thought, "damn Bester, damn the Psi Corps, damn them all."

"Talia," she whispered, her throat raw from crying and the alcohol.

Susan took another gulp from her glass, trying to blur the edges of her memory. "If I could just blur the edges, maybe it won't hurt so bad," she thought bitterly.

"The Talia you knew is dead," Susan heard the voice clearly in her mind as she remembered her last conversation with the telepath.

She took another drink.

"The only person on this station that I can trust implicitly is you," Susan could still hear Talia's gentle voice saying those words as well.

She titled the glass to her lips once more and tossed back the remaining vodka. Then, desperately, she reached for the bottle and began drinking straight from it. But no matter how much of the alcohol she drank, she couldn't seem to drown the memories that insisted on haunting her this lonely hour.

This time yesterday, she had been with Talia. Susan could still feel thesilken wonderof the telepath's golden hair in her hands. The memory of the other woman's warmth was still vivid on Susan's skin. She could feel thesoftness of Talia's cheek on her tingling fingertips. The memory of soft lips and eager hands crowded her mind, working past the blur of alcohol with an aching clarity.

Susan brought the bottle to her lips once more. It was empty. In disgust and desperate sadness, she flung the bottle at the far wall. It shattered in a glittering shower of glass shards, and Susan watched, almost mesmerized by the sight. In each shard, it was as if she could see a piece of herself and a piece of Talia.

Unsteadily, Susan rose to her feet and over to where the broken bottle lay. Unconcerned, she knelt by the glass shards, disregarding how some of the pieces cut at her knees and legs. She began shuffling through the pieces as if looking for something. As if she could find the answer to the senselessness of her loss in their glittering destruction.

Susan hissed as a larger piece of the glass cut her finger. She held her hand up and the dim light caught at the drops of blood forming on her fingertip. She clenched her hand closed and sank back to the floor. She began to rock back and forth and great wrenching sobs tore from her throat.

"Talia, Talia, Talia," she chanted uselessly, hopelessly.

Eventually, Susan fell into a deep sleep...

"Susan," Talia said gently, "Susan."

"Why?" Susan asked the dream image.

"Why what Susan? Why me? Why this? Why did any of it happen?"

"All of it," Susan whispered.

"The answer is, there is no answer. I wish that there was, for your sake. But there just isn't. The heart wants what the heart wants," the dream image of Talia said sadly.

Slowly, Talia moved toward Susan in the dream. With aching tenderness, Talia kissed her and Susan could taste tears in the meeting of their lips.

When they broke the kiss, the dream Talia gently touched Susan's face.

"Remember me, Susan," she said softly and faded.

Susan reached out for the other woman, but she was already gone, just the memory of her voice remaining.

"Remember me, Susan..."

"Always," Susan gasped as she woke from the dream. Her fingers went to her lips and she whispered it once more, "Always.."