"So... lung cancer, huh?"

Michael gave Sam a grim look. "Yeah. I don't know why I'm so surprised. She's been smoking for as long as I remember."

"She's lucky that's it's not any worse than it is," Sam pointed out. Michael nodded.

"I take it Virgil told you."

"Yup. I think he called Fi, too."

Michael's eyes widened at the sound of Fi's name. "Aw, crap," he hissed, standing up and snatching his keys. Sam watched him with a smile.

"I thought she was going home to rest."

Michael looked back to Sam with a strange twist to his mouth. "That's what she said, yeah."

Sam chuckled under his breath. "Going to make things up to her, then?"

Michael cocked his head to the side. "You could say that," he replied before rushing out the door.


With a slight bit a caution to his step, Michael opened the door to the hotel room, wondering if Fi had beat him there. He'd been a little distracted by the whole drama with Madeline and was arriving a little later than he would have liked. As it turned out, Fiona had indeed beat him there and was standing by the window. Michael watched her silently for a moment, caught up in how strangely serene she seemed. Finally, she turned to him.

"How's your mom?" she asked. Michael shook himself out of his reverie and walked up to her.

"She'll be fine," he replied quietly.

"What about you?"

Michael blinked, confused for a moment before remembering how well Fi could read him sometimes. "I'll be fine," he assured her even more quietly. Gently, he placed his hands on her arms, savoring the feel of her skin on his. Ever so slowly, he leaned down to kiss her. Before their lips could touch, however, the touch of her arms in his hands disappeared. Michael opened his eyes in surprise. Fi was smiling grimly, shaking her head as she backed away from him quickly.

"No," she said, almost sounding as if she was talking more to herself. "No, I'm not going to do this again." She looked up, meeting Michael's bewildered stare. "I can't do this to myself again. It's like this every time. I don't know why I've kept letting you do this to me, but I do know I'm not letting you do it again. I'm done, Michael. I can't do this anymore!"

"What are you talking about, Fi?" Michael asked, taking a step towards her. She stepped back, putting up a finger warningly.

"Stop. Don't. What am I talking about? This." She gestured at the two of them. "That." She gestured at the bed. "Every time this happens, you go and do your spy thing and leave me behind. Every single time. I'm not going to follow you around like a lost puppy anymore, it's degrading! I don't know why I haven't learned this before now, but I can't be second best anymore.

"You know what I've realized? It's pointless," she said bluntly. "Because you just don't feel the same way about me as I feel about you. And why should I make myself miserable by trying to make you feel the same way?"

"But I-"

Fi simply had to give him a hard glare and Michael shut up.

"Samantha and I got to talking while we were out there in the jungle, Michael. And seeing how much you leaving her affected her life and continues to today, I realized I'm well on the way to following in her footsteps. I don't know why I let you break my heart time and time again. I really don't know why I still love you. Sometimes I really wish I didn't. Because it really just doesn't seem like I mean enough to you.

"If you're not dating me, you're just... not that into me. If you're not having sex with me, except for when it pleases you, you're just not that into me. If you're having sex with someone else, especially your ex-fiance, you're just not that into me. If you don't want to marry me, you're just not that into me. If you keep breaking up with me, you're just not that into me. If you almost killed me and then immediately go hit the sack with your ex-fiance, you're just not that into me."

Michael looked like he'd just been hit square on the head with a few tons of crap. But Fi didn't let up.

"Maybe I'm the exception," she said, shrugging. "Maybe you really do love me just as much as I love you, maybe being an ex-spy really does give you an excuse. That's what I've told myself before. Maybe I am that one in a million exception that they make movies and write books about. But I'm not going to let you have that chance that easily. Not anymore. I'm done having my heart broken, Michael. I'm done."

On that final note, Fi pushed past him and stormed through the door, letting it slam shut behind her. Michael stared dumbly after her, slowly sinking down to sit on the edge of the bed, her words continuing to ring in his ears through the rest of night.

A/N: Thank you to my boss who allows me to sit at a desk and write all day everyday.

Special shout out to Crazy Computer's Vendetta for her amazingly fun to read reviews and has, thus far, reviewed every single chapter of this trilogy.

Thank you to everyone who has, is or will read and/or review. I love you all so very much!

Don't forget to check out the third story of this trilogy, the title of which I can finally reveal. Monsters, Demons and the Devil Herself. The Devil Herself's prologue will be posted Saturday.

I love reviewers and live for constructive criticism!