Fools like us

When I first saw Lord John Roxton, he had just volunteered to join Professor George Challenger's expedition to the lost world and I had volunteered to pay for the expedition.

When we first met, he smiled way too much for my taste. We were all meeting to discuss the expedition and the men were expecting me to be a nice little woman and stay at home. When I told them that I wasn't planning on letting them go without me, Lord Roxton was quite amused. He sat down on the desk with a smug smile around his big mouth. I shot the desk. The bullet landed only a few centimetres away from his legs. And other parts of his body. The smile vanished from his face.

But I guess he still had no idea about what I was capable of.

I spent my life hiding

In a cold and lonely place

Locked inside these fortress walls

Built to keep me safe

We didn't see each other until we all met in South America. There we continued our journey in canoes. Roxton shared one with me.

It was really hot and so I took off some of my clothes. He told me that it wouldn't be wise to do such a thing.

I remember our exact words:

I'm surprised: Propriety from a man who's seen as much as you, Roxton.

Hardly more a matter of the bugs.

I'll take my chances with the bugs.

I believe it would be them taking their chances with you, ma'am.

I think it was then when I started to realize that it wasn't for no reason that he was called one of the best speakers in the Houses of Parliament. He knew his words. And I knew mine.

The next weeks would be quite interesting I thought.

If it had only been weeks, it might have been interesting. But now after almost three years, I wouldn't use that word to describe our relationship. Interesting is a way too simple word.

Roxton knew nothing of me back then. He thought that I was a nice looking heiress who was looking for some jewels and maybe a little bit of adventure. And he was hoping that he would play a role in that adventure. He was so wrong.

Well, I was ready to do everything to get what I wanted. But it wasn't jewels I was after. Of course, I loved diamonds and other gems. I still do. But the expedition wasn't about them. The expedition was solely about me.

I knew a lot about me: I loved riches, I liked to play with men, I was good with languages and archaeology, during the war, I'd been a tribleagent, I knew some important people, I'd been married thrice, I'd had a few lovers, I'd worked for some bad men, …

But all those things didn't matter that much to me. I wanted to know who I really was.

I grew up in boarding schools, I didn't even know my parents' names. All I had of them was a golden charm. I wasn't even sure that my name was my real name.

I had been searching for hints of my parentage for ages. All I had done was to gain knowledge that would help me find my identity.

That's how I landed up financing the expedition. Someone had told me about the plateau. He had wanted me to find the second half of an ancient talisman, a so called oroboros. I should bring it back to him and then he would give me my birth certificate. The oroboros was on the plateau. I swore myself that I would do everything to find it and nothing and nobody would stop me.

In my hour of darkness

When I was most afraid

You took me in your arms

And you help me to escape

After almost three years, I had finally found it. But it was taken away before my eyes because I had become weak. I had hesitated to take it because I had fallen in love with Roxton over the last three years.

In the beginning, there had been a few kisses. The first one had been one-sided. He'd kissed me and I'd bitten him. The following kisses had been mutual. I had been having fun, and one night in the forest, I'd almost slept with him. But we were interrupted. I've told myself that I was just playing with him because it was fun and more exiting than most of the things happening on the plateau. Everybody needs a little entertainment from time to time.

Many times, he'd comforted me when I'd been down after almost being killed again or after other bad things had happened. In the beginning, I'd been sure that he was just trying to get into my pants. Later on, I'd told myself that he was trying to be a friend. Admitting that had been a big step for me because I could count on one hand the real friends I'd had in my more than thirty years on this earth.

You keep me out of harms way

Shelter from the rain

When blue skies turn gray

You keep me out of harms way

What I couldn't count on one or even two hands were the times Roxton had saved my life during the three years on the plateau or the times he'd tried to stop me from doing something silly. Not that I had listened to him. No, most of the times I had to suffer the "I told you so" look after another one of my schemes. Roxton had always loved teasing me. But I also learned that he was very forgiving. Many times I told him that we shouldn't get involved, that I wasn't what he deserved, but he tried to tell me otherwise. I told him that there were a lot of things about me – especially about my past – that he didn't knew and wouldn't like, but he told me that it wouldn't change his feelings. He learned one thing after another about my past. He wasn't happy about most of them, but he never held them against me, at least not for long.

You can calm the storms

Put this restless wind at bay

And I just want to thank you

You keep me out of harms way

It was in that cave that I finally realized that nothing could stop his feelings. We were – once again – stuck in a cave. But for once, there was no hope of getting out of it. We'd tried it. But we'd failed. The air was getting thinner by the minute and we'd argued. We'd often fought over the years, but it had never been that bad. Our fight in that cave was really hurting. For both of us. We saw the worst of each other in that cave. So many really nasty things were said. But after some time, we had both calmed down and he sat down next to me. We talked about what we'd said. Both of us were so tired. We just sat there for minutes without saying a word, just comforting each other with our presence and our entwined fingers. I fell asleep and dreamt something weird. Then we talked about my dream and about our past and our relationship. Suddenly he said the words. I love you. We were almost kissing when I also said them. All I had ever experienced had led me to that moment in time and out of nowhere I realized that it was my destiny to be trapped with John inside that bloody cave because even if we died in there I was happy. Still scared of my own and of John's feelings, but definitely happy.

Your eyes make a silent sound

That scream I love you right out loud

Only heard by fools like us

Who had all but given up

It was in that cave that we made love for the first time. And I really do mean those words. It wasn't like anything I'd ever done before, and I've done "it" many times with many men. But with John it was so different. We hadn't time, but we took our time. It wasn't a place to show feelings, but we offered each other everything we could give. We were one and nothing could destroy that. Us. Not even death. "Death, where is thy sting?"

And I just want to thank you

You keep me out of harms way

Out of Harms Way

John might not have known it back in that cave. But he had saved me. I had been drowning in the chaos of my world for all my life and he'd reached down and saved me. Just like that. I'd always thought that being alone meant being free. But only his love was able to make me really free. His love made me realize who I really am.

Many things happened during the next hours and days. Our whole world was turned upside down. But in the end, we made it. Together. Simply because we were destined to.

I don't know what would have happened if I hadn't accepted my fate that day. All I know is that we are happy together. Even if we are still on the plateau. But I wouldn't want it any other way.

The End

A/N: I know that I changed a few things, but it's my story and therefore, I'm allowed to do so. ;-) Oh, the song - once more - belongs to Rosey Carter, the Wildwood Flower who wasn't able to get out of the cave. May you rest in peace and may you sing beautiful songs with your mama up in Heaven where all the angels belong.