The Blues of the Sinned: Beginning of the End

--"There is a time in every man's education when he arrives at the conviction that envy is ignorance;
that imitation is suicide; that he must take himself for the better or for worse as his portion;
that though the wise universe is full of good, no kernel of nourishing corn can come to him but through
his toil bestowed on that plot of ground which is given him to till.
The power which resides in him is a new in nature, and none but he knows what that is which he can do,
nor does he know until he has tried"
-Excerpt from "Self-Reliance": Ralph Walter Emerson--

||

She sat still, and quiet, as Jet faced her back to tend the inflicted holes that carried the small piercing metal. Jet bickered on, and pulled and stitched on her, while she eyed the cold metal floor in a daze; a shirt in her hands to cover her bare chest

"The Bebop isn't a safe haven for you to walk in and out of when you're in trouble. You can't just leave and come back every time you like," he spoke like a father to her, harsh and cold, and yet at the same time, it was if he was just lecturing her to be more careful.

"I know, Jet, I'm sorry," she responded hesitantly and softly; her eyes downcast still.

It was a serene but stressful job as Jet pulled two bullets from her back, both laid red tainted on a small tin cup. Spike had left to the Bebop cockpit to start her up for Venus, and Ed sat a distance away in silent content that the other female boarder was back; and was clacking away in her computer for the bounties Jet requested early that day.

"It's just like you, to leave and then come back because of trouble," Jet carefully tightened the last stitch close and began to wash away the blood residue so he could patch them up, "What the hell are you thinking; pulling a move like this?"

For a short time, Faye didn't answer the older man's question. It wasn't until new realization struck her, and she agreed with it.

"I'm just... stupid, Jet. Ignorant, psychotic, selfish, greedy... stupid."

Jet shook his head behind her, his mind flooding with guilt from his recent words. He found the confession of the woman to be too harsh even for self criticism. Jet understood that Faye obviously came back because she couldn't find anything from her past to claim as her own, as far as he knew. And that making her believe that her as a person, is nothing but a being full of stupidity; it wasn't going to help her any.

"I ain't saying you're stupid, Faye," Jet sighed and paused to patch the first stitched hole with a clean medical cloth, and waited for some kind of reaction from Faye. He received a scoff from her before continuing on with his job and his speaking, "You know, nothing's been the same since you left. I'm not just saying this to amuse you, or comfort you, or anything.. just that you know.."

Faye moved her head slightly to the side as the air-lock doors hissed open, revealing a bleak Spike stepping in. The room seemed to grow quieter as tension from the minds of the three adults in the room rose in wonder if words should be said.

Moving down the small steps, Spike took a seat next to Jet on the long couch, behind the wounded Faye who sat facing front on the center table. Noticing the small bowl where two shells were contained in, he broke the tensing silence, "That's all of them, Jet? You sure there isn't anymore?"

"There isn't anymore," Faye replied quickly, annoyance hovering all around her for some random reason even she couldn't say what, "I only caught two... I didn't feel anymore than that."

Spike's eyes flew to her figure; intense in curiosity to her sudden attitude.

Sensing another quarrel, Jet sighed and finished placing the medical cloth over Faye's wounds before he stood up and took a good look at the scene unfolding in front of him, "Uh.. looks like you two need to talk something out, here.." he turned to Ed who sat a ways away, "Ed, you better come along with me."

The young girl happily proceeded to stand up and follow Jet out of the room, passing Faye with a bouncy 'good-bye', while Faye briefly smiled to her as she left.

||

As the two remained in the room, Spike leaned back on his seat as his eyes stayed glued to Faye's figure. He was alone with her now, a situation he told himself he would be glad to have, and yet he was furious with Jet's sudden retreat out of the room and leaving him and her in a hanging suspension caused only by his or her silence. He watched for a while, as Faye had her back at him and placing on her shirt; and turned a little peeved with her quietness.

He was curious to know what had happened to her for the past 24 hours, and he felt that he didn't need to have to ask for his answers. But obviously, he had to strike her with something to make her say anything. He didn't want to ask it, or maybe he was just afraid to, but her insolent behavior was enough to make him ask.

"Who was Marcus, Faye?"

Spike expected it, but oddly she didn't freeze in her spot. Nonchalantly, Faye remained seated, fixing her shirt front, and in a calm voice she answered.

"He was a friend."

"He had to be more than that," he urged on, not satisfied with her simple answer.

By this time, Faye had rested her hands on the edge of the table and had gripped them slightly. She wasn't particularly liking Spike's tone, neither was she comfortable with his questions, "What else do you think he had to be?" she stood up, slowly as to not irritate her healing wound, and turned face the man sitting on the couch behind her, "Who do you want me to say he was?"

Standing up also, trying to match the challenging look he was receiving from Faye, Spike looked over her and saw that she containing pain within her eyes. He had crossed past the line of common sense already, and yet he thought that he had the right to question since he had worried for her, "He wasn't just a friend to you, Faye, it had to be something more than that," he wasn't aware that his voice was becoming loud and demanding.

Feeling like she was trying to be violated in her mind, Faye masked her urge to break in tears at the truth of what relationship she held with Marcus, but she felt her walls deteriorating as Spike continued.

"Come on, Faye, he wasn't just a friend was he? Not when he goes to jump in front of you, and sacrifices his own life for yours," he watched her lower her head in a guilty fashion but still kept silent. He could feel her trying to act out an ignorance to his repeated question, and it only flared his feelings of betrayal, "Faye, answer me dammit! Just-just tell me who he was! Was he your boyfriend?"

Opening her eyes and lifting them to him in a sense of desperation, she angrily freed her tears and answered him as harshly as she could handle, "He was more than that. He was my fiancee in the past!... in the past!" her words made a scene flash in her mind, and it was when she held Marcus' dead body on the street, "The only person I found from my time. He died with me that day on the shuttle ride to space, and he went with me when I was cryogenically frozen. And then, he spent all this time, as soon as he woke up from cryro-sleep, trying to find me and get me to him.."

Spike watched the woman revive her grief once more, and he was ashamed to have it even brought up. He felt satisfied to know his deserved answer, and yet his other mind felt that he should have approached it more differently. And now, in sympathy that meant more than pity, he watched the woman turn to the side, tears endlessly brought up from her misery, and express her aching in a way that he had never seen before.

"It's my fault.. I killed him," Faye echoed her deep thoughts in a strained voice, trying to surpass the clogging in her throat, "I killed the only person I knew who would love me no matter what. I killed him... and he was this perfect man."

He was sure it was the most 'manliest' thing he has ever done in a while, but softly he commented to her, making sure she was aware that he was still there and that he still cared.

"Faye, you didn't kill him. He chose to do what he did for a reason, and that's to keep you alive," gently he moved to her from the side, trying to face her hidden face. He eyed her with calm passion, a little nervous to his confession, as Faye passed him a sideways glance, "And.. you're wrong Faye. He couldn't be the only one to.. love you."

Amused, Faye threw him an unbelieving scoff and shook her head, "See, that's where you're wrong. In these days, sex and beauty are the highest priorities in a relationship. No man between the levels of mediocre and sophistication in this universal society would just love to be with someone because they do; they've got to have more," Faye turned to him to meet his eyes suddenly, "And if, by what you said, you are intending to mean that 'other' could be you, then I'd tell you to stop lying to yourself."

In truth, what Faye had said to him hurt, and it threw him off to feel somewhat deceived. Still, he felt that he shouldn't blow up on her about it, instead he was going to try to find out why she thought so pessimistically, "What are you afraid of, Faye, that you'd throw me off into liking you by saying that?"

Faye gave a laugh that was mildly insane, and she eyed Spike back with a 'you are hopeless' expression, "Everything, I suppose. Why wouldn't I be afraid, Spike? Is it that easy?"

"Why don't you just tell me what you're trying to say so I could figure out what you're bitching about?" his calmness about the situation was fading fast as his frustration with Faye was rising to its peak.

Slitting her eyes at Spike, Faye let out an angry breath before speaking, "I'm saying, I don't need this bullshit when somewhere, out there," she made a gesture towards the hanger doors, "and somewhere in you, there's a name that sits before mine!"

Spike gazed back at her eyes, troubled and trapped. He hadn't expected Faye to talk, or even worry about Julia, and yet she confessed to be afraid of his past relationship with her. He had to admit, Faye did have the right to question his trust, but Spike knew this feeling he had with Faye was so much more. And he wished he knew how to say it in the most trusting and convincing way to her.

"Don't expect me to take this easily, and just accept whatever offer you're trying to give me because I know in the end that I'll just end up alone and miserable," Faye continued.

"Faye.." Spike shook his head and stepped closer to her only to have her react by stepping back.

In a more soft voice, Faye threatened him, "Don't... don't you play with me, Spike. In your eyes, I may be some self conceited woman who doesn't do anything but waste the Bebop's resources, but I don't lack in feelings. I know where the hell this is going, and I swear if you talk shit to me--"

He thought of it as the second 'manliest' thing he had done to her as he quickly moved forward and pressed his lips against hers. He knew the aftermath of his action would be a lot of punching and kicking, and maybe even some pinching But surprisingly after Faye tensed against him as he kissed her, he could feel her slowly ease; one of her hands gently creeping on his side to rest there.

Daringly, he moved in closer to her, resting a hand just under her jaw and on her neck, and the other one set on her waist. And in a more sudden audacious position he gently pushed his tongue against her salty lips, and unexpectedly she slightly parted her mouth, her own tongue shyly reacting to his.

The moment was bliss to his hearing, and everything wrong and despair that had been felt seemed to disappear into the atmosphere between them. It was like that close moment in the French Clothes shop all over again, except this time he had kissed her. He felt suddenly licentious, wanting and hungry to be in love, and to be loved once again.

But the moment vanished slowly as his lips tasted more tears, and his mind wondered why. In a hesitant delay, he pulled away to meet face to face with Faye who winced, tears brimming her eyes and falling endlessly down her cheeks. He swallowed hard as he faced her; nervous and anxious at the same time.

"Don't.." Faye whispered, blinking furiously to shake her tears, "Don't do that unless you mean it.. I'm serious.. please," in a hopeless attempt, she tried to move away from his arms, but Spike kept still and locked to her, shushing her to calm down.

"Faye, just look at me," he whispered back, catching her eyes once more, "If I never meant it, then I wouldn't have done it," he stated slowly to her, looking into her eyes to make sure she understood him, "Just trust me, Faye. I know about the all the bullshit you've gone through, and I know you're worried about me.. and Julia," Spike paused with a long sigh, "I haven't worked on that part yet--but please, Faye, trust me!"

Silence blessed them once again before Faye carefully freed herself from his arms, moving near the long couch to pick up a small tan bag that laid there since her stitching, and went to go to her room to think.

He watched her walk without a word, feeling something in himself sink into a mixture of guilt and want.

"Faye..?"

As she stepped into the dark corridor to the rooms, Faye froze in her spot to acknowledge the man still standing in his position. Gripping the bag against her stomach in a protective manner, she spoke to him honestly about what she felt, and told him that the recent dilemma has yet to disappear.

"I.. I trust you, Spike, I really do. I think the question is: Do you trust yourself? Trust yourself as far as making the decision to forget her so you could be with me?" Faye shook her head to him, still intent to not look at him, "Don't get me wrong.. the day you told me that you might be attracted to me, I won't lie by saying that I didn't also feel the same way towards you."

"Then why did you push me away all those times?" Spike didn't understand it. At some sense, he did, for example: Faye's worries about Julia and him. That would be one pinnacle to her reasons, but he couldn't understand why, if she felt the same way all this time, that she would give up on his trying so quickly.

"I felt like.. I was just table scrap, you know? Last resort; second place; a replacement; even a temporary container to hold your precious feelings for Julia until she came back to you. And feeling like I'm just 'loved for the lay'... I know I'm more than that, even if I liked the attention, and I deserve something that I don't have to risk my emotional sanity to," Faye continued to walk down the hall, to disappear in her small bedroom compartment, but before she disappeared in Spike's line of view, she softly finished her confession, "But.. I'm willing to trust you, Spike.."

Standing in the same position for the past ten minutes, Spike was left with burden over his shoulders, and a great deal of frustration had just started to eat him up inside. And just when things were becoming more tense and difficult, Ed came back the room, waving her 'Tomato' in the air excitedly to a message for Spike.

"Meh-ssage! Meh-ssage! Spike-person's got a message from 'Lady-Julia'!"

||

/I'll always wait for you/

/Meet me/

/And I'll wait/

The coldness of Venus' pavements and the odd raining weather that is fakely produced, gave him a feeling of acute disturbances. So much things had dragged to the ground that day, and this, a letter of recognition now added to his troubled misery, and the possibilities of what's to come after this 'reaquaintance' was varying in product.

He didn't even tell Faye that he left to meet her; to meet Julia.

Why was he even doing this? Why was he tormenting himself more by meeting his old flame? What if Julia sparks back in his interests, then what? He would have lied to Faye, and ruined her. He would break the trust he swore to her. He would break her completely.

But Spike had an entirely different mission by meeting up with Julia. His goal is planned to be strongly controlled and handled, and he readied his mental quickness when certain situations may come across.

Coming to a place where he once stood waiting long ago, Spike pushed the small iron gates which was the entrance, and came in with deep breaths as a figure stood gazing back at him a few feet away. He continued to step closer until finally he could recognize the long golden tresses, the beautiful face, and those intense eyes she carried just for him.

"Julia."

The woman gave a small smile and a brief chuckle, "Spike."

There was a momentous pause before Julia unexpectedly advanced to him for a hug. Spike stood rigid, and he became steady soon enough as he placed his arms around her.

||

She had heard it; the squealing of Ed and her delivery to Spike.

And Spike's footsteps walking away, not following her but whatever the message had said.

It had both hurt and confused her; and as she hid herself in her dark room, she mourned over her stupid feelings, and letting out the frustrated anger against Spike. After a couple of hours, Faye stopped her grieving to clear her mind. There was some revelations of her dilemma that made her grow tired. Tired of having to hide her real face and emotions from the world. She was tired of playing second; staying second; and never be able to make herself as first. She was tired of letting her burdens of the past control her.

Faye wanted to change everything; she wanted to change herself. Not because she felt she needed to, or she felt it was the right thing to do; she was just tired.

As she laid on her bed facing her metal wall, she wrapped her arms around her protectively, feeling suddenly uncomfortable being in her own room and in the Bebop. This place was not her and she wanted to leave. But then again she didn't because this place carried something she needed and craved.

The world was now spinning fast for Faye Valentine; the walls around her crumbling, and the air around her stenched with sourness. She ran thoughts and questions in her mind as to why she was feeling this way; and sickness began closing in. Her world has fallen and nothing was right.

In a sense, this confusion of hers was a way to grow her independence. Though she feared more of what's to come, Faye spawned a new attitude in things; claiming her world as her own, and restricted other people's power over her.

Faye was going to do what she wanted, when she wanted. No one would be able to tell her otherwise.

And in the night, just before dusk, she will leave and disappear from everyone. She will change everything about herself to start anew. Faye binded this plan in her heart with stone that no one can break.

Not even Spike.

||

He sat there, strumming his fingers atop his right knee; seemingly comfortable and proud. Spike kept his view outside the car door window on his side, tranced by the other passing vehicles, but at the same time he was fixated with the past few events that had occurred between Julia and him.

Soon after their hellos were said in the small cemetery, the two of them had headed to a cafe where businesses were discussed, but not before changes were confessed. He didn't expect their talk of separating to go so smooth; to that he smiled.

And yet, in the small of his mind, he silently questioned Julia's true feelings of the situation. He would glance over to her as she drove, and occasionally she would glance back with a solemn smile that used to glow so holy when he loved her. Still, things after the cafe became awkward.

As Julia drove him towards the dock where the Bebop sat rocking with the waves of Venus' sea, Spike waited for the black car's halt before stepping out into the air. He hesitated to talk as he watched Julia step out of her own door, looking at him in kindness.

"Well, Spike, I'm glad I asked to meet you today, and I'm glad you came," she began; walking slowly to his side.

Spike nodded to her, shoving his hands deep in his pockets as if he was in desperate need of a smoke to fix his sudden uneasiness. As Julia came forward to him, her sad but fair eyes piercing him in the darkening skies, Spike cleared his throat to her, looking guilty of any hurt he had given her.

"I"m sorry, Julia."

Julia smiled again, taken by the apology that she found undeserved. She shook her head at him and laid a caring hand on his shoulder, "No, Spike, I'm sorry."

No other explanation was needed to add to it for Spike to understand, and as he silently watched her figure move towards her car; stepping in and starting the engine once more; he waved to her, "Thank you, Julia."

She smirked at him, accepting his thanks, "Remember, before morning." And with that, she was gone.

||

Confidence was his best friend; and the leash that choked him during this whole event was now unshackled and gone. He had nothing to worry about; he was getting to do what he wanted.

He stood in front of her door, unsure if he should force himself in or knock. He figured knocking would lead to nothing for surely Faye already knew where he had been, and would not be willing to invite him in. So there was nothing else for him to do but to go in without permission; this couldn't wait another day.

Calmly pressing the button to slide the door slowly open, he stepped in the dark room carefully; eyes kept at the silent figure that laid on the bed in front of him; her back against the door. Nothing was going to break him; not even Faye's quietness towards his break-in was going to bring him down.

He was too proud.

With ease, Spike walked towards her bed side, and laid on his side on the empty space behind her. He felt her shift, trying to move closer to the wall in front of her, either trying to give him more room or moving away from him. For some reason, her stingy moves weren't a bother; and moving a hand to her stomach, he gently pushed her to her back; and found it suprisingly easy as she turned around to face him.

She looked angry and a little afraid, but nonetheless he smiled to her. She moved her hands to his shoulders, vainly trying to push him away, but catching a hold of them in his own, he pressed his cheek on hers as he whispered to her.

"Faye, I went to meet Julia today," he could feel her hands twitch to his words, and rushed in his words so that he could avoid a possible misunderstanding, "She asked me to help her; help her fight against the Syndicate. And I said yes."

At this point, Faye had grappled him hard on the shoulders, pushing harder than before. He could feel her twisting underneath him, trying to free herself. Quickly he maintained his hold on her, bringing his face in front of her distant and hurt expression. He moved a hand to her right cheek, "Listen, Faye, I told her I'd help her but I said--"

She paused in her attempts to look at him in expectance.

"I told her, I had to come back here afterwards. I told her there was someone waiting for me here; and I told her I was waiting for that someone also."

He smiled to himself as it struck him that he had become some sort of hopeless-romantic-sap; and yet it was all worth it as Faye gazed at him, enlightened by the news. She was still quiet, but he could tell she was grateful and happy by looking at her eyes.

For agonizing moments, he had to stay in his position to wait for her response; and it soon came, quiet and blissful. There was no words; there didn't need to be; only actions of pure love for a soul that play out the significance of love. For the whole night, love was being shared one way or another; kisses and hugs, and even in the less platonic ways. Both pained and tired souls seemed to have finally found rest in each other's lips and arms; nothing could ruin their moment. And yet, who could foretell the near future between them?

The answer laid in Faye's heart, for her arrangements at dusk were still in consideration...

And the stone was still intact.

~review pleaze~

On the next chapter:
********************************
*Face Wars* !!STRIFE21 VS. JULIA!!

Strife21: It's you! O_O!

Julia: Gah! O.O!

Strife21: >o Bring it on!

-*ding ding* Round 1:

Julia: >.> ......

Strife21: _ ......

-Tie! *ding ding* Round 2:

Julia: ~.~.....

Strife21: ~_~ .....

-Tie! *ding ding* Round 3:

Julia: ~`.~ ...grrrr...

Strife21: ~`_~ ...rahr....

-Tie! *ding ding* Final Round:

Julia: (\ (\
( > . >) *heehee, bunny*

Strife21: n n
( * ; * ) *heehee, squirrel*

-Tie! *ding ding* Another Final Round Because All These Ties Don't Help:

Julia: >o You will perish by my hands!!

Strife21: >o You will perish by my next chapter called "Blues of the Sinned: End of the Fat Guy" by means of hardcore gun fighting, and bombs-a-explodin'!!

Julia: x.x; No, you evil bitch!!

-*ding ding* Strife21 WINS!

Strife21: *hopping up and down with her arms in the air* Adrian! Adrian! =note: This mocked scene is from the movie Rocky (I forgot the number) and is performed by Sylvester Stallone; so it's not mine=

Julia: Rematch, dammit! I don't want to die again! ;_;

Strife21: It wouldn't matter if you won; you'd have to still die because.. *in an eerie voice* you must die~

Julia: @.@ ........

Strife21: MAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA~~ MAHAHAHAH-*cough, choke, cough*-AHA~

~laterz, cowboy....~

Very Long and Important Paragraph:

Hey, hey! Ahh.. well, a little bit delayed in the chapter uploading plan, but I feel this chapter is complete and has all the main points I intended to write. I wanted to say to the person who asked about Julia's appearance, that yes, from reading this chapter, she would have to still be in this story. Even though I dislike Julia, this fanfiction is only an alteration (even more than an alteration) from the real sessions; and everyone knows that Julia is considered a needed character towards the end of the Cowboy Bebop series.

I also wanted to say to the reviewer who wrote an uplifting paragraph that it's not really the reviews the motivates me to write (although they help greatly). As you can see, this story has surpassed a year. My chapter uploading determines in my skill for that chapter. Sometimes I find it hard to think up the chapter's plot, and that is what kills most of my early plans to upload sooner.

I bet you're wondering why this A/N is so long and quoted 'Important', but I would like to thank everyone who has read, reviewed, and kept me inspired to get this far in this fanfiction. This was my first Cowboy Bebop fanfiction, and at first I was so nervous to have it placed for the public. But ever since I caught attention of readers, I've felt very relieved and comfortable; and this, personally, uplifts my self-esteem each and every day. I would like to thank you for that also. And as we move along to the last chapter, I hope to not disappoint you with it, and I also promise you in the near future that I won't.

Now is about the time I ruin the heartfelt moment that I have created, and repeat myself with my thanks. Love you all; I'll finish the next chapter soon.

PS: (Yeah, I know.. It's WAY too long :P) I apologize for ruining the happy/sad/ironic moment by doing that preview with FACE WARS!!!!--- lol. I tend to break things like that ^_^; Anyways, have a good one!