Eternity Was In Our Lips And Eyes
A/N: Based on my Jean Brodie fanmix, "eternity was in our lips and eyes", archived at my LiveJournal.
PART ONE: it is not forever (Hugh/Jean)
1. Wednesday Morning, 3 AM
He takes her to bed three times, provoking a languid passion in her that unfolds slowly but completely. The third time he watches her as she sleeps afterwards, quietly, economically, her arms folded neatly over the blankets. Even her dark hair lies obediently against the pillow.
She is wiser than he, more mature, and older – her beauty not the vivid sexuality of youth but something more subdued, more sensual and developed. She loves him deeper and more lastingly than the other girls he knows.
He will be leaving her soon, leaving the comfort that her slender, strong arms around him bring. He is glad, now, that he has taken her to bed, for he can cherish the memory of her in his arms when he arrives in Belgium. He can remember the way she sleeps, the way she breathes, the proud strength of her tanned profile against the whiteness of the pillow.
2. The Girl in No-Man's Land
How can he be here? The war-torn fields of Flanders are not what he wants to see. He wants, more than anything, to return home, to his fiancée, to his love. Yes, he knows that she is waiting for him, but he doesn't want her to have to wait. They should be married now, they should be together and happy and in love.
Her letters are his only salvation during the long, lonely nights of keeping watch. Pages of her flowing script, some words blocked out by the censors, but always the same message – 'I love you, I need you, please come home.'
He wants to give her what she asks for, wants more than anything to return to the love he knows is waiting for him... even changed as he now is. He knows she will love him no matter what. He will love her until the day he dies.
3. Ain True Love
He isn't expecting this. Never could he have imagined what is happening now.
The sky seems red; the echo of guns louder than thunder. He is bleeding, slipping further and further away the more he tries to keep his grasp on his life. There is no one around him, no one to help him. He knows now that he will never return to Jean, never see her again, never kiss her again. He wishes they had married before he had left, as she had suggested... but it is too late for that now.
'Jean...' Her name slips from his lips, his last word, followed by a deep, final sigh.
The sky is no longer red. The sound of the guns echoes on.
4. You Are The Moon
The telegram lies open next to her, telling her of his death. Her fingers tremble; she folds her hands in her lap and tries to ignore the despair that settles over her like a pall.
He is dead.
The lamplight casts a bright golden puddle, and she cannot bear it anymore. She wants to be anywhere but her flat, cheerful as it is. She runs, for the first time since her childhood, down the stairs and onto the streets, ignoring the few people awake at this hour.
He is dead.
The park is not far, and she unconsciously makes her way to the pond in the centre. It reminds her of Hugh, of the first time they had made love, in the middle of the night in Ayrshire, sleeping next to the stream. In the morning he had stripped and jumped in, splashing her. She does that now, kicking off her boots and hiking up the skirts of her dress, wading into the water.
He is dead.
Tears stream down her face as she splashes, trying to remember how it felt to have his arms around her. She cannot; the memories are faded and lifeless, like pictures in a storybook. An anguished wail is torn from her throat as she falls to her knees.
He is dead.