(I own nothing. This fic is written from Ellen Behar's perspective, set about a year later from the events of Placeholder.)


There you are, with her. As I knew you would be. Standing in the queue of a busy cafe on a Sunday.

My hand around the coffee cup goes lax as I sit transfixed, staring at you two. Feeling a twinge of regret or two. Yet, I can't look away.

It's funny how much this sight you're affording still shakes me. It isn't like this is news to me. I saw this coming for miles. One of the reasons I called it quits with you, after all. I wonder if you've pieced that together somewhere along the way.

Well, I should add that my ex – former boyfriend, that is – casually mentioned it to me one day. That you'd gotten married. He didn't notice how belaboured my breathing got there for a while. He was pretty unobservant for a Fed. Yeah. A leopard can't change her spots. Would you want her to?

You step aside her to let a man pass you two, and I catch a glimpse of her body. Her belly is protruding quite noticeably.

No wonder she glows. It isn't all down to basking in the light of your love, it seems.

So, a wife and a baby, huh, Malone? And all this in a year since I left you. My, you've certainly kept busy.

I feel an inclination to come up to you, to remind you of me. I push it down. Figuring that it wouldn't accomplish anything.

My throat constricts when you put your arm around her, pull her close and brush her temple with the faintest of kisses.

You never did that with me. We didn't last; something tells me that you two will.

I wish you nothing but the best for you. Both of you. Truly, I do.

I finally tear my eyes away, leave my coffee cup half full on the table and go out round the back.