Disclaimer: Wicked is not mine.
A/N: This story is a little different from my other ones. Originally, I was going to write more before this story and then post as a multi-chap. But when I thought about it, I decided that I liked this story by itself. I'm still toying with adding more after this story. This could be a oneshot, or it could be the beginning of a multi-chap. What do you think? I hope you enjoy! (and please let me know if you want me to continue).
Glinda ran after Elphaba. The green girl navigated the halls of the Wizard's palace better than Glinda could've guessed. It was almost as if Elphaba had been in those halls before, as if she had been running for her life before. Glinda shivered even though she was running through the palace, following Elphaba into the dark. This place was too creepy to live in; Glinda didn't see how the Wizard could inhabit such a cold and unwelcoming fortress.
Elphaba finally reached the attic and sealed the door after Glinda clambered through it. Elphaba heaved the board in place and stayed with her hands rested on the board, her chest moving in and out quickly. When she had caught her breath, she walked through the room briskly, looking for anything they could use to escape. It was no use; Elphaba would have to use the Grimmerie. The magic book seemed to radiate heat through her bag as though it sensed Elphaba's thoughts.
"Elphie?" Glinda asked cautiously, placing a hand on her roommate's shoulder.
"Don't worry, Glinda. I'll get us out of this, I promise."
The two girls could hear the guards gathering outside, and Elphaba quickly found a spell that would keep the door sealed long enough for them to make their escape. She muttered the foreign words quickly under her breath, satisfied when she heard the door latch with the magic. She flipped through the book quickly, looking for that terrible levitation spell. Even though she was hesitant to use it again, it seemed to be the only way out of the attic. She and Glinda would have to fly out.
"Elphie, what are you doing?"
"We're going to fly, Glinda," Elphaba said distractedly. She found the spell and started to mutter the words, careful to pronounce the words as correctly as she could.
"Elphie, no! We can't do that! He'll find us. The Wizard is too powerful, Elphaba. We can't fight him."
Elphaba didn't acknowledge Glinda's worries. She continued to repeat the spell, praying that it would work. She could hear the guards growing restless and angry outside the door, and she doubled her efforts in her spell. This had to work! She couldn't live with herself if she got Glinda killed, all because of her stupid idealism. Glinda shouldn't have to suffer just because she couldn't bear to be another one of the Wizard's pawns. No, she would get Glinda out of this. She had to.
Finally, after what seemed like an eternity and when Elphaba didn't think she had any energy left in her, a wooden broom began to float toward her. Glinda gasped, and Elphaba grinned widely, a happiness bubbling up in her that she couldn't suppress.
"It worked! Glinda, it worked! Quick, get on!"
"Elphaba," Glinda hesitated. She needed to tell Elphaba. She couldn't leave with Elphaba without telling her the truth about her feelings. Glinda felt the familiar butterflies rise in her stomach as she contemplated telling Elphaba everything.
"What is it?" Elphaba asked, excitement over the successful spell still clear in her voice. She was practically jumping with her joy, and the sight made Glinda smile.
"I—I have to tell you something."
Elphaba's smile faltered, and she lowered the broom slightly. It was if she had deflated, and Glinda felt a pang of guilt. What if Elphaba didn't feel the same way? What if she would ruin her relationship with the only real friend she ever had? All of the risk involved almost made Glinda back down, but Elphaba was determined to flee. Glinda either had to convince her to stay or she had to tell Elphaba the truth before she fled with her.
"Okay…" Elphaba said cautiously.
"Elphaba. I can't leave with you without telling you…the truth. About me, about how I feel about you."
The guards outside were banging on the door, shouting obscenities and threats to the girls. Elphaba flinched and grabbed the broom tighter, her green hands nearly turning white with the pressure. Glinda instinctively took a step closer to Elphaba, wanting to feel the comfort of her roommate. She wanted more than anything for this whole ordeal to be over and for she and Elphaba to be back in their room at Shiz, sharing a cozy night together.
"Glinda, hurry up. Can't you tell me later? Right now, we really need to leave. If they get in here…"
"Elphie, I can't. Not without telling you." Glinda took a deep breath, steeling herself for what had to come. "Elphaba, I love you." Glinda ceased to breathe as she took in her roommate's expression.
Elphaba's face broke into a huge grin, her white teeth gleaming against her green skin. "Is that all? I love you too, Glinda. Now, let's go."
Glinda shook her head, certain that Elphaba had missed her meaning completely. But what if she hadn't? What if Elphaba was simply letting Glinda know that she had known about Glinda's feelings for a while now? Glinda took a tentative step toward Elphaba, and when the girl didn't move away from her, Glinda tackled her with a hug. Elphaba dropped the broom in surprise, and her body tensed from the close contact.
Before Glinda could stop herself and analyze what she was doing, she planted a soft kiss on Elphaba lips. The green girl stood perfectly still, her body still tense. Eventually, though, her green lips began to work with Glinda's pink ones. Glinda's mind reeled with happiness, and she unintentionally pushed Elphaba back with her passion.
Elphaba ran into a shelf loudly, making the shelf rattle and things fall to the floor. Glinda deepened the kiss, tangling her fingers in the silky raven hair as she had yearned to do for so long. Glinda sighed, taking in all of Elphaba, memorizing how she felt again her body. Suddenly, Elphaba broke away, pushing away from Glinda and rubbing her mouth with the back of her hand.
"Oh, Glinda," Elphaba started, her voice full of sorrow.
Glinda's stomach dropped. Elphaba didn't feel the same way as she did. It was just as Glinda feared it would be, and the blond could feel the tears already starting to sting her eyes. Elphaba's face was soft, and she looked extremely sad and vulnerable.
"Glinda, I love you, I do," she started, her voice cracking with emotion. She didn't ever want to hurt her best friend, and she knew that this was going to break Glinda's heart. "It's just…I don't love you like you want me to."
Glinda nodded, sniffling and miserably wiping her face. She began to move toward the door where the guards were waiting. She was going to go to the Wizard and turn herself in. After all, what was death compared to this? In fact, Glinda thought death preferable to a life without Elphaba. And Glinda was certain that Elphaba would never want to be a part of her life after that.
"Glinda, I have to tell you something," Elphaba said softly. Glinda turned, Elphaba's tone making her curious. When she saw the green girl's anxious face, Glinda stepped closer to her. Even though Elphaba didn't feel the same way, Glinda would never stop loving her and seeing Elphaba in pain was enough to cause Glinda's heart to break all over again.
"What?" Glinda asked in a small voice.
"It's about…Fiyero," Elphaba finished awkwardly, her fingers playing with the hem of her cape.
"Fiyero?" Glinda asked curiously. What could Elphaba have to say about Fiyero?
"Glinda, the reason I can't love you like you love me is because I love…Fiyero."
Ouch. Glinda felt as though her heart had been torn from her chest. Elphaba and Fiyero? Fiyero? Of all people, Fiyero? Glinda couldn't believe it. What did Elphaba see in him? Glinda was ten times the partner Fiyero would ever be. She looked at her green friend, her eyes filling with even more tears.
"Why?" Glinda breathed.
Elphaba looked as though her heart were breaking along with Glinda's. "I didn't mean for it to happen, I promise. It's just that…he wanted to talk to me about you. He thought you were being distant, and he wanted to know what was going on. We met in private, and at first all we talked about was you. But then…" Elphaba smiled softly, in spite of the circumstances. "Then we kind of hit it off. We were afraid to tell you. Well, I was afraid to tell you. Glinda, I never wanted to hurt you."
Glinda nodded, torn between feeling angry with Elphaba or feeling happy for Elphaba. The green girl was clearly happy with Fiyero, and Glinda only wanted what would make Elphaba happy. It was all she had ever wanted, ever since that day at the Ozdust. And if that was Fiyero, then Glinda would have to be okay with that.
"Please, say something," Elphaba said, her voice small and quiet.
"Elphie, I'll always love you. I'm happy for you, I am. If Fiyero makes you happy, then I have to be happy."
Elphaba smiled weakly. "You don't have to be okay with it." The guards' banging became more insistent, and Elphaba jumped. She scooped up the broom quickly and ran over to the window, opening it. She held out her hand. "Come on, Glinda. We have to go."
Glinda shook her head. She couldn't go with Elphaba, not now. She couldn't be alone with Elphaba, on the run from the Wizard. She couldn't be a refugee with Elphaba. It was too much pain. But if Elphaba didn't leave… "Elphie, I can't." Elphaba's face contorted with pain. "Please, Elphaba, don't go. Don't do this! Come back with me. We'll work all of this out, and then we'll be happy again. At Shiz. Please, don't ask me to leave with you. I can't. But we can walk out of here right now, Elphaba. Let's just go back and tell the Wizard we're sorry. He'll understand. Please!"
Elphaba's face softened ever so slightly. "Glinda. I can't. I can't go back there and pretend everything is okay. I can't smile and nod and be another one of the Wizard's puppets. I can't live that life. I wasn't born to fit in, Glinda."
Glinda had to smile at Elphaba's reference to her verdigris. "But Elphie, think of me. Don't leave me! Think of…Fiyero. He would want you to come home."
Elphaba's face clouded with emotion. "I know," she said softly. "I want to go home too. But I just can't. I can't do it." She shook her head, her hair moving softly from side to side. "No, I can't."
Glinda began to cry, her shoulders shaking. Elphaba was leaving and there was nothing she could do to stop her. Elphaba loved Fiyero, and there was nothing that Glinda could do to stop that either. Glinda felt so helpless, so useless. She had waited her whole life for someone like Elphaba, and now, as soon as she realized how much she cared for the green girl, she was leaving. Just like that. Glinda started to cry harder, her whole body shaking with the force of it.
"Glinda. Oh, Glinda, don't cry. Please don't cry," Elphaba said, rushing over to the blond girl and wrapping her in a hug. "You'll be strong. You're strong enough for this, Glinda. You can do it."
"Not without you," Glinda sobbed into the green girl's shoulder.
"Yes, yes you can. In fact, I need you to. I need you to stay here. It's perfect! I don't know why I didn't think of it before!" Elphaba said, perking up.
"What?" Glinda said, pulling away to look at her roommate's face. She tried to wipe the tears from her face.
"You can stay here, Glinda, and you can help me," Elphaba said, her eyes lighting up.
"What?" Glinda asked again, nonplussed.
"You can be a spy, for me. A mole on the inside. You can work with the Wizard and update me on his plans. It's perfect!"
Glinda squirmed, not comfortable with Elphaba's plan. "I can't do that, Elphie. When he finds out I'm helping you, he'll kill me. And then he'll come after you. No, I can't do it. I won't."
Elphaba grabbed Glinda's hands, squeezing them gently. "Glinda, you have to. I can't beat him without you. You're strong, Glinda, you can do it. Please. For me."
That melted Glinda, and she found herself nodding. Yes, she would do anything for Elphaba. She would die for Elphaba. And she very well might. But at least she could die knowing that she had helped the girl that she loved. Yes, to leave Elphaba alone in her mission now would be to give up on the one person who had truly believed in her. She couldn't do that. She wouldn't. She would help Elphaba, no matter what the cost.
"Okay," Glinda said resolutely. Elphaba beamed at her.
"I'll send you word when I get settled. I'll send it by pigeon. I'll pretend to be your cousin. Don't let anyone else see. And send your responses by the same pigeon. It'll know what to do."
"Okay," Glinda said again, taking in all of Elphaba's instructions.
"Just stay with the Wizard, Glinda. Pretend that I forced you to come up here with me, that I held you hostage. Tell them I'm a witch, someone to be feared. I want the Wizard to shake in his boots."
Glinda grinned weakly. "I'll do it, Elphaba."
Elphaba smiled and stepped toward the open window again, her hand holding the broom tentatively. The green girl thought again and turned around, facing Glinda. Glinda could see tension the Elphaba's face, and she wished more than anything that she could take it away.
"Take care of Fiyero," Elphaba whispered, almost inaudibly.
Glinda nodded dumbly. Of course she wouldn't let Fiyero fall into ruin. She would look after Elphaba's lover as though he were her own. Glinda's heart broke in her knowledge of Elphaba's feelings toward Fiyero, but if Elphaba loved him, Glinda had to also. Whatever would make Elphaba happy, Glinda would do, no matter how much pain it caused her.
"Don't tell him about any of this. Pretend you love him. Do anything to keep him close to you, Glinda. You two need each other, and he'll be able to protect you here at the palace. Please, Glinda, don't tell him the truth about this. Just tell him I defied the Wizard and that now I'm gone. Don't let him come for me."
Glinda nodded. "Whatever you want, Elphie. I'll keep him safe."
Elphaba grinned weakly and turned again to the window. "If you ever need me," she said as she stepped onto the hovering broom, "just look to the western sky. I'll come to you." And with that, Elphaba was gone.
Glinda stood in the attic, suddenly cold. She clutched her arms and hugged herself tightly, willing the pain of Elphaba's departure to go away. If she was going to do as Elphaba asked, she was going to have to pull herself together.
The guards at the door were angrily shouting, and Glinda was fearful for the first time. When Elphaba was there, Glinda had felt secure in a strange way. She had faith that Elphaba could fix anything. But now, standing there without Elphaba, Glinda suddenly felt small and insignificant. After all, the Wizard hadn't even wanted to see her. All he cared about was Elphaba. What was to keep him from executing her right then and there?
Glinda trembled out of fear. She thought of Elphaba's face and of her last requests. She steeled herself and moved over to the quavering door. She would have to be strong, for Elphaba. She couldn't let Elphaba down. She threw open the door, her face defiant as the guards drank in her slender frame.
"Where's the witch?" one guard asked gruffly. Two others grabbed Glinda's arms roughly.
"Gone," Glinda said as unemotionally as she could. "Silly girl just jumped out of the window."
The guard's eyebrows shot up, and he plodded over to the open window and looked out into the darkness. "She's not down there," he said.
"Yes, well, she must have said a spell then. All I know is that she left. Can I go back to the Wizard now?" Glinda asked, putting as much impatience into her voice as she could muster. If she were to tell the truth, she felt nothing but emptiness.
The guard walked back over, looking at her maliciously. "Why? He said you went off with the green witch."
"Yes, but I think she must have magic spelled me or something. I know I would never defy the Wizard. She's a witch; why would I help her?" Glinda said, struggling to keep her face a deadpan.
The guard looked at her for a moment, considering her words. He finally relented and led the guards back to the throne room. Glinda shuddered as the big mechanical head began to move. It had been much less frightening with Elphaba standing by her side.
"Did you find her?" the head boomed.
"No, your terribleness. But we did bring you her companion. She claims that the witch magic spelled her and then jumped out of the window."
"Thank you, guards. That will be all. Leave the girl," the voice roared.
As soon as the guards had left, the little man came out from behind the head. He took off his goggles and stared at Glinda curiously. He wiped his hands on a dirty handkerchief.
"Where is Elphaba?" he asked almost gently.
"I don't know, your Ozness," Glinda said blankly.
"I see. What happened up there?"
"She jumped, sir."
"Is that so? And why would she do that?"
"She was trapped. Your guards nearly had her."
"Miss Glinda, why don't you tell me the truth? You can't honestly expect me to believe that Elphaba jumped to her death."
Glinda hesitated, wondering how much of Elphaba's escape she was supposed to tell. The Wizard noticed her hesitation and stepped forward, a malicious smile on his face. He had her cornered, and he knew it. Glinda felt bile rise in her throat, but she kept a straight face, thinking of what she had to do for Elphaba. She would not fail.
"Yes, your Ozness. On a broom."
The Wizard suddenly erupted with laughter, his small frame shaking with the power of it. It was mirthless, however, and it made Glinda tremble in fear. The Wizard was truly maniacal, and Glinda feared that he would order her execution right then and there. He stopped laughing and wiped his eyes, a toothy grin still plain on his face.
"So now Elphaba has escaped on her broom with my Grimmerie. But she left you behind. Why?"
"I could not go with her in good conscience, your Ozness," Glinda said, not completely lying. "She's wicked, sir, and I couldn't follow her."
The Wizard grinned again, and Glinda thought it resembled a lion who had caught his prey. "Of course, Miss Glinda." He paused, seeming to consider something. "You know, I like you. You're not afraid to betray your friend in order to help me." Glinda inwardly flinched. "Why don't you come and work for me after Shiz? You can have Elphaba's job."
"The Magic Grand Vizier? Oh, your Ozness, I couldn't! I'm nowhere as advanced as Elphaba!"
"My dear, that hardly matters. You'll be more like a figurehead than an actual witch. Besides, Madame Morrible has informed me that you were the only other student in her sorcery class. I suppose you'll have to do."
Glinda nodded, numb to the Wizard's barely veiled insults. She could handle anything as long as it helped Elphaba. "Okay," she said weakly, ready to be gone from the Wizard's presence.
"Good. You may go now, Miss Glinda. We'll keep in touch," he said almost threateningly as she exited the throne room.
As she walked out of the palace and into the cold night air, she instinctively tilted her head to the sky. She wanted just one more glimpse of Elphaba, something that told her that Elphaba approved of what she was doing. She was met with only the chill of the air and the whistle of the breeze through the trees. When the wind blew, Glinda imagined it was Elphaba's fingers that caressed her face instead of just empty air.