"We have to get out of here," Elphaba said, pulling away from Glinda's curious hand.
"Elphaba?" The woman turned to look at her sister, not daring to hope for anything at all. Nessarose met her sister's stare. "Thank you."
Elphaba nodded, just once, and Nessa, with the aid of a Gale Force Guard, made her way back toward the safety of her mansion.
"Excuse me," a small voice said, catching everyone's attention. Glinda, Elphaba, Nessa and the Gale Force Guard all turned to see a young girl stepping out of the house. "Where am I, and -" her mouth dropped at the sight of Elphaba.
"You're in Munchkinland," Glinda said kindly, stepping forward to stand between the girl and Elphaba. Her training as a public figure had prepared her for something such as this. "What is your name? Where are you from?"
"I - I'm Dorothy Gale, from Kansas," the girl said, her hand finding its way up to fiddle with one of the braids that hung over her shoulders. "How do I get home?"
"I..." Glinda didn't really feel like dealing with this, and found herself looking at Nessarose for help.
"I'll take her in," Nessa volunteered. She held her hand out toward the girl. "I'm Nessarose Thropp, the governor here." Dorothy nodded, shook her hand, and turned to follow Nessa.
"You might want to go to the Emerald City," Glinda suggested, as the three people made their way toward the mansion. "The yellow brick road goes right there. You just follow that one road the whole way!"
Sighing, she turned back to Elphaba, who had busied herself hanging her head and fiddling with the handle of her broom. "I travel by air," Elphaba said. "I'm not sure how long it will take to get to safety by foot."
"Does that thing hold two?" Glinda's eyes, full of fear, were on the broomstick.
"It's been known to," Elphaba shrugged. "But never one as prone to fainting as yourself." Glinda raised her chin and narrowed her eyes at Elphaba, looking more adorable than determined, but communicating her thought nonetheless. "Alright," Elphaba said, still dubious. "Hop on."
Landing as smoothly as she could in the woods nearby, Elphaba let Glinda stagger off the broom before holding it to her side. She found herself a little less study in the air of late, but didn't want to admit it.
Glinda clutched her stomach and looked as though she might vomit, then, the placement of her hand reminding her, raised suspicious eyes to Elphaba's form.
"What was it I felt through your dress?"
"Glnda... It's hardly appropriate to comment on another woman's figure."
"Nice try, Elphie," Glinda huffed, clearly insultified. "Is that bump what I think it is?"
"Um, I... Don't, well..."
"Fae," a familiar voice teased. "You can tell her, you know."
Glinda thought her heart would stop, as Fiyero stepped out of the shadows and into the light. Six months of living on the run hadn't been particularly kind to either of them; Fiyero's face was rough with stubble and they both needed new clothes and a good meal (or ten). He stepped to Glinda and pulled her into a friendly hug. "I had hoped things would go alright... Did they?"
Glinda was staring at Elphaba. "Elphie," she said. "I want to know if you've been spying on us, and how, and why you didn't tell me you were alive, and if that bump is what I think it is."
"I've had my ear to the ground, I have my connections," Elphaba revealed. "Nobody could know I was alive, it was too risky. It still is, but, as of now, you're in more danger trying to survive Morrible than you are being aided by me and Yero. And yes," she added, turning her attention to Fiyero. "Things went alright." He moved to her side and kissed her forehead.
Glinda raised an eyebrow at her friend, waiting for her to answer the very scandalacious question she'd posed, and pouted, huffed, and tapped her foot when Elphaba didn't offer up that information. Finally, she snapped, "And the bump?"
Elphaba flushed, and Fiyero wrapped an arm around her shoulders. "She's at about five months."
Squealing, Glinda hopped toward Elphaba, who ducked behind Fiyero and held him at arm's length like a shield. Glinda hugged Fiyero, while desperately flailing her arms behind him, trying to reach Elphaba.
"We have to get moving," Elphaba said, eyes darting around the forest. Fiyero and Elphaba led Glinda to one of their many hideouts - built in a cave and glamoured so that it didn't appear to have a decent-sized opening. It wasn't much, but it suited them fine. Elphaba waved her hand and a fire blazed to life in a far corner. "Tea?"
"Elphaba Thropp -" Glinda paused. "Tiggular?"
Elphaba shook her head. "I keep asking, and she keeps brushing it off," Fiyero said, his eyes trained on Fae.
"We live as man and wife, Yero, what's the difference?"
Fiyero eyed their company, and decided not to get into one of their all-too common debates. Instead, he shrugged.
"Alright then, Elphaba Thropp," Glinda barked. "There is absutively no excuse for you to have tricked me into thinking you were deadified."
"Besides your safety?"
"Besides nothing." Glinda had gotten fairly used to her word being gold, and didn't appreciate Elphaba's refusal to bend to her will. "Do you know how moodified I've been this past year? And you were going to have a little teeny child and not tell me?"
"You can't stay here long," Elphaba said, ignoring Glinda's rant. "You'll have to return to make sure the Gale Force doesn't spread the word of my...being alive."
Glinda pouted, and Elphaba snorted at the typicalness of their situation.
"ELPHABA! We haven't seen each other in four and a half years! How can you be so... so..."
"Tumultuous inside?" Elphaba interjected, spinning around to glare at Glinda. "Just because I'm not ranting and raving, just because I apppear stoic, that doesn't mean I don't care! It hasn't been easy, not seeing you, and knowing you didn't know the truth. It hasn't been easy, being an enemy, being a risk to anyone who is near me. I've longed to talk to you, to listen to you, to have a normal life, but it's not my life."
Fiyero stood and enfolded Elphaba in his arms, kissing her temple, then her forehead, then her cheek, and took the kettle from her. Glinda observed this moment between them and felt a great deal of joy at it - she hadn't really ever had the chance to see them together. He could soothe her, which Elphaba greatly needed. There was a compatability to the pair, an energy, in the way they looked at each other, in the balance of their physical stature, and in the peace on Elphaba's face when Fiyero's body was near hers.
"I'm sorry," Elphaba said, but, like typical Elphaba, with a tone that said 'It is proper to say sorry, but I'm not really'. "I don't want you to think I haven't missed you, that we haven't missed you," she added, gazing at Fiyero. "I also don't want you to go, but I fear your staying here... I think it's safest if you're not near me, Glin."
"You let Fiyero stay with you," Glinda pointed out, crossing her arms over her chest.
"He's too brainless to see reason," Elphaba shrugged.
"Hey," Fiyero protested.
Glinda giggled at the sight of it, and felt as though she were back at Shiz.
"Well, why can't you come back with me? Without Morrible and the Wizard plotting against you, you could -"
"We can't go back. If anyone knows I'm still alive, they'll think it was really me making them suffer all along, and good will never be restored. You have to understand, Glinda. Now it's up to you. I believe in you."
Glinda looked from Fiyero to Elphaba, and willed her friend to be wrong. But she knew that Elphaba was correct. "But I only just found you again," she whispered, beginning to cry.
"You never lost me," Elphaba assured her. "There will be a way for us to communicate. I'm just not sure what it will be."
Glinda tearfully wrapped her friend in a firm embrace, feeling Elphaba's small but round belly against her waist and wishing she could be there for the birth of her friend's child.
Glinda returned to the Emerald City, now with this girl from Kansas to send home, and the added trouble that her three companions (she'd made friends along the way) seemed reluctant to part ways with her.
They now stood in the courtyard, near one of the Wizard's Magical Flying Balloons, having a semi-private conversation as they waited for the Wizard to come to take Dorothy away. They'd come all this way, but were still, they believed, without brains, heart or courage. It seemed odd to Glinda that they didn't recognize the presence of these things in themselves, but she supposed she could always point it out to them later.
"It's maddening, not knowing who you are," the Scarecrow lamented.
The man of tin stretched his rusty limbs and stared at the Scarecrow, sensing something vaguely familiar about it. "You're supposedly this Fiyero Tiggular fellow," he answered. "That's what everybody says."
"And who are you?"
"I'm not sure," the Tinman said. "I feel as though I should know. As though I should know many things, but do not."
"Well, perhaps it's for the better," Dorothy piped up.
"What you don't know can't hurt you," added the Lion.
Glinda observed this calmly. The Scarecrow had a Fiyero-like quality to it, as if everything that the people of Oz had perceived about Fiyero had come to life in it. Magic, she decided, worked in mysterious ways. The hopes and dreams and beliefs of people could actually assign a semblance of life to something.
But this Tinman... His voice was so familiar. Perhaps he had been a part of the riots against Elphaba? "Tinman," Glinda said, to which he responded with a bow of his head. "Tell me, why is it you want a heart?"
"Because I haven't got one," he said, earnestly.
"Why do you think you need one?"
"I'm not sure..." he seemed as though he were on the verge of realizing something. "I don't think I was always heartless. I think I had a heart, before..."
"What makes you think that?"
"I don't know. But I think my heart remembers something, I think it's attached to something important."
"Maybe it remembers something you don't actually want to know," the Scarecrow suggested. "Maybe something bad happened, and if you knew, it would make you sad."
"Hearts will never be practical until they are made unbreakable."
"Maybe," the Tinman sighed. "Maybe you're right."
With Morrible in prison and the Wizard gone, it was easy to spread the word that Elphaba had been framed by the Wizard, which was accepted so readily that it made Glinda seethe with anger. Only a year previous, they would have hung her from the highest pole for suggesting such a thing. "People," she decided, "are followers, but they don't bother to think about who they're following."
Boq overheard her, and kissed her cheek from behind her, wrapping his arms around her arms, over her collarbone, and smiling. "Does that mean they shouldn't follow you?"
"Well, obviously I'm good," she pouted, her hands resting on his arms as if she were going to do some strange chinup on them. "I miss my friend, Boq," she sighed.
"I know you do. I wish you didn't have to," he murmured.
"But if they knew she was alive, they'd think she'd been why they'd been miserable, after all," Glinda recited. "I know, I know."
"But at least she's safe, and happy," Boq offered. "Off somewhere with Fiyero."
Glinda smiled. "I hope she has an army of boys. Mischievous, brainless boys. Then she'll come crawling back, desperate for help," she asserted, chuckling.
On the outskirts of Oz, Fiyero was down on one knee in front of Elphaba, who found the situation overwhelming, and, therefore, was uncomfortable.
"I can't promise you the life I would have liked to have given you," he said, her hand in both of his. "But I can promise you I will love you forever. And ever. And ever. I've hinted at this more than once, Fae, and it's time you came up with an answer."
"Well, what exactly do you want me to say?"
"Just nine words, nine simple words: 'I love you, too, and yes, I'll marry you.' It's not hard."
"Fiyero, I love you endlessly, desperately, and would consider it the greatest honour and joy of my life to be your wife."
Fiyero considered her words a moment, trying to believe them. "That's more than nine words," he reminded her.
"You are hopeless," she laughed. "I can't wait to be your wife."
"I love you, Fabala."
"I love you, too, Fiyero."
And those nine words were all they would ever need.
Thank you so much for reading the reviewing!! I can't believe I finished my first fic! I've been working on another one for a few weeks now, it's another Fiyeraba. I'll start posting it soon, but I'd also like some feedback on One More Disaster. I know it's a short Oneshot, but that just means it won't take you long to read it!
As for the things I changed:
Someone didn't want Glinda and Elphaba to be apart forever, someone else didn't want Nessa to die. Originally, Nessa wasn't going to listen to Glinda, and end up FLATTENED... and Glinda was going to believe Elphaba was dead... Though, I suppose, they're still apart for forever, just not the same way, because they'll be able to see each other.