Just because they deserve a different ending!

. . . .


Jane hurried over to the window, the sounds of John's, or Tarzan's as she had heard him say, raw, unmitigated grief over the loss of his ape father echoed in the courtyard of the great house as he sprang from his position in the buggy onto the back of one of the horses that he was driving relentlessly around the circle in front of the house.

"He must be allowed to decide for himself!" she exclaimed, tears running down her face as she turned back to the two men who had be debating what was to be his fate; England or Africa, "I want him to stay, but I also want him to be happy! As happy as he can be. I want for him only what he wants for himself; to be whole! To be..."

The door to the elegant room slammed shut and they turned to see John standing there, wet and muddied from his ride, a look of resolve showing through the pain on his face. He walked towards them, the footsteps of his elegant boots broke the silence in a way that was strangely at odds with his appearance as he walked towards them.

"I'm going home." the simple words were spoken without an ounce of emotion.

"Lord Greystoke,I realize that..." Sir Evelyn Blount spoke haltingly, pausing when the man he was addressing jumped over the back of the couch and then stepped nimbly off, "That what happened in London yesterday must have been deeply distressing to you, but I would advise you, in your present state, not to make any decision that um... could effect your... future."

John looked down at the cigar that the other man held in his hand and snatched it away before looking up at him once more, "I am. going. home."

"Lord Greystoke..." Sir Evelyn was obviously annoyed and at a loss of exactly how to handle this man.

"I can go," John informed him, looking at him from under his brows, "Because I know now what I'm not."

"You are the EARL OF GREYSTOKE!" The other man lost control for a moment and shouted the words angrily.

John's eyes narrowed and the sound of a lion's low growl proceeded from his mouth. Sir Evelyn jumped backwards and sat down, hard, on the comfortable couch behind him.

"Half of me is the Earl of Greystoke," John said with quiet intensity, leaning over and hitting the other man's immaculate shirt front with the back of his open, muddy, fist, "The other half is wild."

Capitaine Phillippe D'Arnot, his first human friend, came up behind him, but John warned him off with a cough-like sound before turning to face him as he slowly drew himself up to his full height.

"I am going back."

Phillippe nodded in agreement, and Jane felt - amidst the disappointment of losing him - a pride in the way he conducted himself; not completely refined, but wholeheartedly earnest and determined.

. . .

One week later, John, Jane and Phillippe stood observing the majestic beauty of the waterfall near his home in Africa.
Several hundred yards away, an ape appeared in the folliage. John called out to it in the language that he knew best and began his way up to meet it, shedding clothes as he went until he was down to the loin cloth that he had worn for so long.
As Jane and Phillippe watched, he climbed nimbly up towards his clan, but just before he disappeared, he stopped looked back with a torn expression on his face; half ecstatic to be home, and half longing for the people that he had grown to love.

"This is where he truly belongs, isn't it?" she said wistfully, turning to the older man, "I am certainly going to miss him!"

. . .

Several months later, after the maid had finished brushing her hair and turning out the lights, Jane lay looking up at the ceiling of her bedroom long after she would normally have been asleep. She had a lot to think about; Charles Esker had proposed again that afternoon, reminding her that it was no good waiting for a jungle man who had chosen the wilds over her and who would - presumably - never return. If she had not been so lonely, she never would have considered it, but the horrible, aching emptiness in her heart had been so painful for so long that she really was considering accepting him on the chance that it might take away her longing for the only man who had ever won her heart.
Sighing, she moved restlessly, reminding herself as she did every day - and night - that the jungles of Africa was where John belonged; the only place he would ever be happy. If only... ah, but it was useless to think of. He would never have been happy permanently residing in England, and she would never have survived in Africa. They were like two different languages; blending prettily when together, but neither truly belonging where the other was at home.
A moment later she shook her head; what was the use? This was the same thing she had repeated to herself a thousand times a day. Closing her eyes resolutely, she slowed her breathing, consciously relaxing her body as she did so.

The moon was high in the night sky when she opened her eyes and furrowed her brow, puzzled as to what could have woken her up. Then she heard it again; a loud, frenzied pounding on the large front door, only faintly heard in her room but enough to alarm her. Grabbing a robe, she threw it on before hurrying through the halls and down the main staircase as the tired butler opened the door.
It took her sleep-fogged brain a moment to recognize the figure that stepped inside the door. Then in a flash she was down the last of the stairs and in his arms, crying hysterically as she held him tightly.

"How is this possible?" she asked in amazement when her first burst of emotion had spent itself, drawing back and running her hands over his face, "You said..."

"Half of me is wild," he said quietly, but then a tender smile lit his face, "But half of me is the Earl of Greystoke. And all of me longs for you."

"John," she stepped back, her rational mind taking over, "You won't be happy here, and I cannot live in Africa for the rest of my life. We don't belong together."

"We do," he stepped towards her earnestly, "I will live here and manage the estate for half of the year with you, and then you will come to Africa with me for the other half; I have built you a home."

. . .

The next morning Jane woke up and stretched slowly, sleepily wondering what was different before slowly realizing that the emptiness was gone. A moment later her eyes flew open and she rushed downstairs, needing to know if it had been a dream. When she burst into the breakfast room and found John waiting for her, it was as if everything in the world was right again, for she had found her home. It was with him.

. . .

Epilogue -

Jane held her newborn son close and looked up into John's awed face with a smile of happiness.

"It has happened." her husband announced solemnly, gently caressing the baby's cheek with one finger.

"What?" she asked him curiously.

"I am whole," he answered, bending down and nuzzling the baby's face, "I am whole."

The rays of the setting sun filtered through the leaves and branches of the jungle and shone on the bed where the three of them sat.

"So am I." she said softly.

For no matter where they were, or what they did, there was only one place that they belonged. Together. United. Whole. Home.

. . . .

Corny, I know... but a happy ending never the less. If you enjoyed it, review, if not, don't bother; I don't want to know.