A/N: Sorry it's taken so long to update. My life is far too busy but I have a slight break at present and I most definitely have not forgotten this story so bear with me. I promise I will endeavour to complete this story. Enjoy.

Chapter 11.

Juliet eyed the envelope that lay on the bench. How long till James got back? What did she do? Should she ring him and tell him that Edmund had dropped by or maybe not. No need to worry him about it but having Edmund turn up on her doorstep had put a dark shadow over her previous euphoric mood. With him reality came crashing in hard and fast, reminding her of her current predicament. He still owned her. But not for long.

James would get him. She believed in him. After last night she no longer had any doubts about his feelings towards her. How could she when he'd made her feel so completely loved and wanted. She smiled to herself as she walked down the hallway to her bedroom. James loved her. She loved him and it really was that simple. She opened her wardrobe and began shuffling through her clothes. Funny it's just that she'd never thought she would ever have this, real love with a man who loved her equally back in return as if her fate was meant to be one of loss. Juliet shivered and pushed the morose thoughts out of her mind and frowned at the dismal clothes residing in her wardrobe. Her wardrobe really needed an overall. She'd been living like a nun for far too long. Most of her clothes were black and drab and there was no colour. She needed to put colour back in her life. Shopping would pass the time. She should ring Rachel and meet her for coffee at the mall.

That decided Juliet grabbed the phone by her bedside table and pushed in Rachel's number. Should she tell Rachel what had happened between her and James? Or did she keep it to herself. Rachel was prone to giving lectures and playing the worried bossy older sister role and how many times had she heard her say let's face it Juliet, your track record when it comes to picking men hasn't been all that good.

"There's something different about you," Rachel remarked, sipping the straw of her tall glass of iced chocolate.

Rachel didn't miss much.

"Should you be drinking that?" Juliet said, eyeing Rachel's iced chocolate as a way to avoid Rachel's usual acute observations.

"Now that the morning sickness has passed I have this craving for milk shakes," Rachel admitted, and glanced at Juliet, "and stop trying to change the subject."

Juliet sighed and put a sugar in her coffee.

Rachel's eyes rested on her face.

"Why do you suddenly look so pretty?"

Juliet's face reddened slightly. How did she tell Rachel about what happened between her and James last night? What if Rachel gave her another lecture about her choice in men?

"And happy?" Rachel continued "you have this glow about you."

"I don't know what you're talking about," she stammered.

Rachel's eyes narrowed slightly and her perusal continued making Juliet squirm uncomfortably in her seat.

"You had sex with James!"

Juliet glanced fervently around. "You want to announce it to the whole shopping centre."

Rachel leaned back in her seat looking somewhat shell shocked. A lengthy silence followed and Juliet waited for the lecture.

"Well he's hot," Rachel murmured.

It was the last thing Juliet expected her to say.

"And I'm not," she returned and regretted the words as soon as she said them.

Rachel frowned and snorted. "Maybe you should start looking at yourself truthfully instead of through Edmund's eyes."

Okay she had asked for that but looking at herself honestly wasn't something she was terribly good at.

"So what was it like?"

"Amazing," she sighed, sounding like some dreamy school girl.

Rachel smiled. "God I've forgotten what amazing sex was."

"I never knew it could be amazing till now," Juliet admitted and her thoughts drifted back to James.

What was he doing right now? How long till he came back to her apartment and what was going to happen next?

"But are you sure you're doing the right thing Juliet?" Rachel asked and Juliet noted the sudden concern in her eyes. "Because well he is a cop and his line of work is sort of dangerous and you've only know him a couple of weeks."

"Feels like my whole life though," Juliet frowned.

"And you're the last person I'd ever thought to fall for that whole 'love at first sight' thing," Rachel remarked.

Juliet gave a dry laugh and shook her head. "It's not that," she began and couldn't even begin to explain to Rachel how at times it's like she had known James before. In another life, he would say but she still wasn't entirely convinced of that. How could there be more than one life?

"Do you think we could have lived before," she hesitantly asked and stirred her coffee to distract herself and waited for some derisive remark from Rachel.

But Rachel went strangely quiet and Juliet glanced at her. Rachel's face had gone a tad pale and Juliet's heart rate suddenly increased.

"Maybe," Rachel murmured.

Juliet's hand froze.


Rachel raised haunted eyes to Juliet's. "I sometimes dream that you go away and you never return and then I wake up and I feel so gutted inside because even though it's a dream it also seemed so real," she mumbled, "I looked for you for so many years."

Juliet swallowed the sudden giant sized lump in her throat.

"But it's just a dream," Rachel continued in a brighter voice, "god listen to us, we sound so morose, let's go hit the shops, about time you had a makeover now that you've gone and fallen in love with some cop," Rachel continued dryly. "And about time you wore something else other than black clothing."

"That's why I'm here," Juliet pointed out and to pass the time too, till James returned.

Miles rounded on James as soon as he stepped into the office.

"Where did you disappear to last night?"

For a moment James didn't know what to say and Miles was looking at him in that speculative way.

"You had sex with Juliet," he continued.

"What," he spluttered, was it that damn obvious.

Miles shook his head. "Knew it was only a matter of time."

James frowned and Miles looked at him. "You're in the shit this time too, the old Captain is in a fine rage about you walking out last night."

James shrugged. "What else is new and I don't care what he has to say, that guy is a first class ass, he's always had it in for me."

"Ford!" bellowed the Captain from his office door and James shut his eyes. Fuck.

"Told you so," Miles remarked. "Falling in love with a woman and this job just don't mix."

James glanced at him. "Then I'll quit."

Disbelief crossed Miles face and James turned around and walked over to the Captain. Miles was right, dammit, he was in the shits now.

"Need a word with you," the Captain muttered as James neared.

James glanced at the black rimmed glasses on his face, the bald head and the clumps of grey wiry hair that the captain still liked to keep there. Seriously if he was that bald he'd just shave his hair off and be done with it. And wasn't it about time the prick retired, he must be pushing 70.

James stepped into his office and the Captain closed the door behind and James mentally braced himself. Just stay calm but the old codger had a way of getting to him and he just couldn't explain why he hated the prick so much.

"Care to explain your actions last night?" he asked, sitting down on the swivel chair at his desk.

"Couldn't handle it Hoss," he returned honestly and the Captain frowned.

"How many times I gotta tell you to stop calling me that," he snapped.

James gave him an even look.

"It's Captain Radinsky to you."

"Okay Captain," he sighed.

Radinsky pinpointed him with a glare. "I don't like your attitude Ford," he stated, "I've never liked it but unfortunately you are good at what you do but lately your work standards have been slipping."

James didn't know what to say and he could hardly tell the prick the truth. Falling in love with the main woman on a case he happened to be working on wouldn't go down well.

"Last night proves to me that maybe you need a break from being a detective for a while."

James head shot up at those words.

"If you can't handle a simple murder case like last night it means you've gone soft Ford and until you can get your emotions in check I'm putting you back on the beat once this current case you're working on is finished."

"What," James spluttered, his ears ringing.

"You need to toughen up Jim," Radinsky stated, "and you don't get to call the shots around here," he continued, "I do."

The bastard always did have it in for him, James silently fumed. Suddenly the day had gone from being amazing to being fucked in just one hour.

"You still got your police uniforms?" Radinsky asked and James longed to wipe the smirk off his face.

"I don't know, haven't done it in four years," he muttered.

"Might pay to go pass the uniform shop and get fitted out," Radinsky continued and James glared at him.

There was a time when he didn't answer to anyone. There was a time he would have told the prick to 'fuck off'. That time when he was Sawyer but he wasn't that man, that man only resided in his dreams.

"Fine," he muttered, "is that all Captain?"

"Yeah, we're done here."

James turned on his heel and stormed out of the office. Miles looked up from his desk.

"Doesn't look good," he began.

"It's not," James muttered, raking a hand through his hair. "He's putting me on the god damn fucking beat."

"Again," Miles frowned, "don't worry he'll soon cool down, realise he needs you back and re-instate you, again."

Miles was probably right but still it didn't ease the sudden shame at being put down to a mere sergeant again.

"Least now you'll get to spend more time with Juliet."

James shook his head. "Knowing that prick he'll make sure I get the night shifts and I'll be spending my evenings arresting drunks and yahoos on the streets."

"Man I remember those days, they sucked," Miles shuddered.

"Maybe I should just resign, that'll teach the prick," James muttered, falling back on to the chair at his desk.

"Don't be stupid," Miles exclaimed, "you can't resign, you and I we've been doing this together for 14 years, you can't walk out of me now."

James looked at Miles. Miles and him, since academy days when he'd been lumbered with the know it all annoying little shit he'd been back then but he couldn't explain why he had put up with him, what drew him to Miles? Why they'd become friends? Why Miles was always so loyal to him?

"What else are you going to do?" Miles continued with a thoughtful look.

"Maybe I'll go work in security or something."

Miles went still and James frowned at the sudden uncertainty in his eyes.

"What is it?"

Miles shook his head. "Like in the dream," he murmured.

"What dream?"

Miles looked up at him. "The one where we're living in the 70's in this place that's weird, has the houses that all look the same and we're wearing these overalls and you, you were the head of security."

His whole body stiffened, a flash of uniform houses flittered through his memories and he hastily pulled the drawer to his desk open and reached for his diary.

"What are you doing?" Miles asked curiously.

"Writing it down," James replied.

"Why it's just some stupid dream Jim."

"Maybe," he returned absently, "but maybe it's more."

Miles just shook his head as if he was crazy.

"Funny thing too, but Juliet was in the dream the other night."

James' head shot up. Miles frowned.

"What now?" Miles exclaimed perplexed, "you're acting so weird lately."

James ignored him and began scribbling the dream down in his diary.

"It's just a dream Jim," Miles enforced.

Juliet couldn't get Rachel's words out of her head on the drive back to her apartment. I sometimes dream that you go away and you never return ...I looked for you for so many years and then I wake up and I feel so gutted inside because even though it's a dream it also seemed so real.

A cold chill crept through her and a sudden longing to see James hit her hard. She needed him to come home now, she needed to see him and hold him just to make sure he was real. Juliet shook the unsettling feelings away. This was just madness she told herself as she pulled into the parking bay. Grabbing the shopping bags she exited the car and walked up the stairs to her apartment on the second floor. It was eerily quiet and she felt nervous without even knowing why. She fumbled for the keys in her bag and the hairs on the back of her neck stood up. Why did she feel like someone was watching her? She spun around but there was no one there in the long empty corridor. But she still couldn't shake the unsettled feeling in the pit of her stomach.

I sometimes dream that you go away and you never return. Juliet tried to fit the key into the lock but her hands were trembling. She couldn't explain the sudden tears blurring her eyes. Damn it, damn fucking keys. She raised a hand and hastily wiped the tears away. Damn, damn, damn, what was wrong with her? Her eyes fell to the keys in her hand and out of the corner of her eye she sees the wheel chair approaching. Slowly she turned her head and looked at the man in the wheelchair. He's bald, he's familiar, too familiar and that cold chill returned causing her to shiver.

"Hello Juliet," he grinned.

How did he know her name? She looked at him wordlessly and a sharp sudden pain filled her head.

"You don't remember me?" he continued.

They were standing around a well, he was holding onto a rope.

"If what you're doing works I want to thank you."

She froze and the word escaped her lips without her awareness.

"John," she murmured. "John Locke."

His smile widened. "You remember."

Juliet's whole body shook. She nearly crumpled. The bags fell to the ground. She brought a trembling hand up to her forehead and she found it hard to breath.

"W-What is happening to me," she gasped and her legs went weak. And she couldn't think for the blood rushing to her head.

She closed her eyes, fighting dizziness and sagged against the wall, sliding to the ground in a sitting position, bringing her knees up to her chest. It wasn't a dream, they were never dreams.

It was real. All of it painfully and horribly real.

Memories burst into her head, causing the sharp searing pain to worsen and suddenly she found herself lost in a world that no longer existed.

I looked for you so many years. Rachel's words and it all made sense now.

She had left, gone to that wretched island that would keep her prisoner. The longing and yearning to escape as real as it was then. The sheer injustice burned like battery acid in her gut.

I just want to go home, please Ben I just want to go home, she'd begged him.

You're mine Juliet. Shattering any last hope she had left.

And she wept, in that kitchen in that house, on that island she was trapped in.

Her prison.

Her life sentence.

James in the jungle, watching the plane breaking apart in the sky, the plane that brought James to her. They captured him, locked him in the cage, the inner rage that existed within him. The last person she ever thought to fall in love with. He was so angry, so flawed, and he was her last lifeline. Travelling through time and finding themselves stuck in the 70's. He had held it all together, begged her to stay.

His face had been the last face she had seen before she died.

Don't you leave me and she remembered hearing the anguish in his distraught voice.

This was her fate after all.

It felt like time had stopped. Seemingly in slow motion she watched the scene of herself sitting on the dock and James saying, two weeks is all I'm asking unfold before her. She is yet she isn't there. But so clear was his face that if she were just to reach and touch him ...


That insistent voice kept calling, John's voice, sounding distorted and faraway. She wanted to escape the pain and misery surrounding her but at the same time she wanted to hold onto the image of James. But the memories slowly began to recede and she had to let them go. It hurt too much.


John's worried voice seemed to drag her from that other place, the island, where she'd lived, was trapped, found love and then died. Somehow she managed to raise her tear streaked face and look at him.

"Why?" She shuddered in a deep breath.

"Why did you find me, why did you make me remember?"

Her voice sounded thick and low and enormously strained. Her heart beat so hard, it ached.

John regarded her seriously before answering and at least he had the audacity to look somewhat ashamed.

"I'm sorry," he replied at length, "I'm sorry if it hurts Juliet, I just assumed you remembered."

She hastily wiped the tears from her eyes.

John averted his gaze from her face and so he should feel guilty.

"I saw you with James and I thought, well I hoped you'd remembered the island."

She swallowed the lump in her throat. Damn him for coming back and damn him for making her remember. She didn't ever want to remember that place. Too much pain back there.

"I wanted to tell you that it worked," he continued.

Juliet felt the hysterical bitter laughter rise up in her throat. And suddenly she felt really angry. She managed to drag herself to her feet and she glared down at John Locke. Fuck the island and what exactly was it that had fucking worked!

"Why has nothing changed then?" she muttered through gritted teeth, the rage inside blinding her ability to think calm or rationally.

"Why am I still like this," she stammered as a range of emotions threatened to engulf her and holding onto her anger was the only way to fend them off.

"Look at me, look at my life, it's a damn fucking disaster!"

She dug her fingers into her scalp, pulling her hair away from her face.

"Why did I still marry the some ass and why did my sister have to suffer cancer again!"

She turned on him angrily, placing both hands on either side of the wheelchair. Her face only inches from his.

"So tell me John what has worked!" she hissed.

"You're alive," John calmly pointed out, "And so I am and as much as the memories hurt Juliet, it still worked."

The fire and rage left as suddenly as it had come and her shoulders sagged. She pushed herself away from his wheelchair, turning her back towards him, fighting tears that threatened, trying to swallow the enormity of her turbulent emotions.

"And James still finds himself drawn to you because of that other time, that place, where you met and fell in love with him."

James, she inwardly sighed. James who was so convinced that they had lived another life and he'd been right all along and yet he was still ignorant of it. He still hadn't remembered it. And probably just as well. Lucky him. Better that he never remember it because his pain was going to be so much worse than hers. She can still recall all too vividly the distress and anguish in his face and voice.

Don't you let go, don't you leave me. She drew a deep painful breath. So help her god but she could never would never tell him that it had happened.

Juliet slowly turned around and looked resentfully down at John. She spoke sadly, bitterly.

"I still wished you had never come here."

John averted his gaze from hers but she kept hers fixed firmly on his face.

"Promise me John," she spoke, calmly, evenly, "promise me that'll you'll never tell him, promise me that you'll never see James."

The shadows grew longer. The room darkened. Juliet sat in the same corner of the room, recalling every single moment on that island. Not because she wanted to but because she couldn't stop it. The memories crowded her brain in the want to be remembered. So immersed was she in them that she didn't even hear the front door open. She didn't hear the footsteps on the floor and when James spoke her name she was unaware of where she actually was.

"Juliet," James spoke again, his voice urgent, worried and she slowly looked up.

He stood there, like a dream and she blinked.

"Why is it so dark in here," he continued, flicking the light switch on causing her to squint against the sudden brightness.

"Why are you sitting on the floor?" he asked, his voice puzzled, "and you left shopping bags out by the front door and the door wasn't locked," he continued his voice breaking off there as he looked down at her, confusion crossing his face.

God he was such a sight for sore eyes and emotion made it difficult for her to speak.

"What happened?"

"N-Nothing," she managed to croak and forced herself to get to her feet.

Her legs felt unsteady and weak.

"Nothing," he mimicked, "doesn't look like nothing and you look pale, so tell me what is going on Juliet?"

She had to pull herself together. Regaining her composure, she took a deep breath.

"I was just feeling a bit off colour," she managed to speak, "must be the shopping, or maybe not enough sleep last night and well I'm not use to having sex all night long."

She forced a smile to her lips. Relief flickered in his eyes and he took the few steps that separated them towards her, his hands coming to rest on her shoulders.

Her eyes raked over his face with sweet familiarity.

Look at you she felt like saying you're so young. Raising a hand she touched the smooth planes of his face, the nonexistent lines around his eyes that were yet to come.

"I missed you," he breathed and drew her mouth to his in a long lingering passionate kiss.

Juliet melted into his arms. You found me. How was this possible? Who cared. He was here, he was alive and so was she and this was real. Nothing else mattered. And she clung to him, as if her last goodbye as she lay in that hole dying was her last memory of him. Because it felt that way and damn the memories, damn John Locke. Pulling back to look into his face once again she marvelled at this new found discovery of him. Alive, they were alive. She traced the outline of his mouth with her fingers before threading her fingers through his short hair. He was James, the same but different too. How good he looked, so wonderfully good and the strong emotions of seeing him again threatened to engulf her. Pull it together girl, she silently chided.

"Are you sure you're alright Juliet?" he asked, confusion crossing his face.

"Of course."

"Then why are you crying?"

He sounded baffled and confused and worried as his finger caught the single tear that tracked down her cheek.

Was she? Oh hell. She bit down on her lip. For one long moment she couldn't breath, couldn't move, couldn't think. Say something. Say something before he begins to question you again.

"I-I don't know," she softly murmured.

She buried her face in his chest before he had a chance to see anymore of her tears. His arms went around her in a comforting soothing gesture, his hands catching in her hair.

"Just tell me Juliet, tell me what is wrong?" he pleaded.

She held him tighter. "It's okay James," she mumbled in his shirt. "It's going to be okay."

And it would be, now they had found each other again. She pulled back and gazed into his face and managed a reassuring smile that seemed to satisfy him.

"Good," he murmured, flickering a finger over her cheek. "You got anything to drink Blondie, something strong and alcoholic."

"Of course I always have something strong and alcoholic in this apartment," she lightly returned and well that was different.

She never used to drink so much.

He grinned and gave her a quick kiss on the lips. "That's what I love about you."

She stood there rooted to the spot. Lighten up Blondie, you could do with a drink or two. That other time, that other place.

"It was a shit of day," James grumbled turning away from her and dispensing of his leather jacket onto the sofa.

God he was so much slimmer, his face more angular than before. She followed him into the kitchen, moving in slow motion and watched him grab a can of beer from the fridge. He glanced at her.

"You want one?"

She nodded.

He handed her a can and she flipped the tab off, bringing it up to her lips and drinking the cold smooth amber down in one long gulp like she hadn't had a drink of anything in a long while. She looked up to find James watching her, the amusement evident in his eyes.

"Hell girl, you really needed that drink."

She wiped her mouth, feeling somewhat embarrassed.

"I was thirsty."

Terrific, she's an alcoholic in this time line.

"So why did you have such a shitty day?" she asked. If only he knew what her day had been like!

"The captain reamed me out big time," he muttered taking a swig from his can of beer, "I'm sure that prick has it in for me."

Juliet noted the scowl on his face, so now he actually did have some lines of his face.

"Fucking Radinsky," he continued and Juliet choked on her beer.

She coughed and spluttered and pushing past him to get to the sink she turned the tap on and reached for a glass of water.

"Ya know you're supposed to drink slowly Blondie," James quipped.

She spun around to look at him. "Radinsky?" she gasped. "How old is he?"

"Too old to still be working," James began and frowned, "you know him?"

"The name rings a bell," she returned and managed to get some composure back.

Radinsky was the Captain at the station James worked at, and Miles was his partner. Juliet fought down the nervous hysterical laughter that threatened to erupt. How ironic.

Oh god she was losing it and reached for her can of beer.

"He's demoting me from being a detective," James muttered bitterly raising his can of beer to his lips, "seems I'm gonna have to go back to being a sergeant and working the beat."

Juliet stared at him in disbelief for a moment. James was a cop. Why did he become a cop, why wasn't he the same conman like in his previous timeline? What had changed?

"Why didn't you tell him the truth, that you couldn't handle seeing that particular murder case because of what had happened to you," she softly asked.

He gave her an even but pained look. "Not something I can talk about."

She placed her can of beer on the bench and went over to him, curious as to why he was different this time around.

"Why did you become a police officer?" she asked, her eyes searching his.

He looked baffled for a moment, confused as to why she was asking him this.

"I don't know," he returned, "guess it sounded cool, putting bad guys behind bars, making sure they got their just desserts, seeing justice get done."

"But something must have happened, somebody must have convinced you to become a cop?" she persisted.

"I guess my Uncle," he admitted sighing and taking a swig of his beer before returning his gaze to hers. "I'd just spent six months in juvenile detention, I was 17 and my Uncle told me there were other ways of dealing with my anger rather than stealing cars and getting into fights."

Juliet was touched by his simple words. He was different in many ways. He had made better choices, unlike her. She'd still managed to make the same dumb choices by marrying Edmund.

And no way could she let James remember that other timeline and the person he was back then. How much he had despised himself. She briefly recalled him telling her about the dreams he had of conning women, killing a man and how much if had affected him and those were just him dreaming of it! Not even remembering it.

"And he was right," James continued. "After I got out of juvenile detention I went back to school and studied hard and thanks to some good references from lecturers I got accepted into the Police Academy despite my record."

Juliet looked at him in amazement, this was all so surreal and she felt an overwhelming tenderness towards him.

"I'm glad," she murmured. And reaching out a hand she caught a few strands of his hair in her fingers, lightly rubbing them.

"Make the most of it Blondie," he muttered dryly, "I'm probably going to have to get a damn haircut once I'm demoted."

"It's probably my fault," she said.

His curious gaze met hers.

"How's that?"

"I made you fall in love with me."

He smiled warmly and ran a thumb over her lips, making them tingle. "You're the best damn thing that has ever happened to me."

Wasn't the first time he had said it. And she shivered slightly despite the warmth spreading through her at his touch.

James still finds himself drawn to you because of that other time, that place, where you met and fell in love with him.

"I love you," she said the words softly.

"I love you too," he replied warmly pulling her into his arms. "Ain't ever gonna let you go," he murmured in her hair. "Not ever again."

Juliet clutched at his shirt. He said these things as if subconsciously remembering and now she knew why. And it was imperative that he must never remember in full, that place, the island and what had happened there, her death.

She felt his arms stiffen. And she raised her face to his confused.

"What is that envelope on the bench?" he asked, pulling out of her embrace and crossing the floor to the bench, picking it up in his hand.

Juliet had completely forgotten all about it, what with everything that had gone down today.

"Um Edmund called by," she stammered.

That's right, her lousy ex. Still alive, still around to make her life a misery, to remind her of exactly where she currently was, in time.

James spun around, his eyes fastening on her face.

"Is that why you're so upset?" he said abruptly, raking a hand through his hair. "What did he do to you Juliet?"

"Nothing," she blurted out.

She could see his jaw clench.

"Nothing," he exclaimed, "and that's why you were sitting on the floor, curtains drawn, shopping bags left out by the front door, crying and upset because it was nothing!"

Oh hell. And that was the other thing. Least on the island they didn't have her ex-husband to contend with. He was dead and buried and she was totally free of him. It took Juliet a moment to adjust to this startling thought.

Edmund was very much alive now. Edmund still owned her. She was tied to him and the whole reason James was now back in her life was because she'd gone to the cops! To him, to get something done about her bastard of an ex trying to sell HER fertility breath through.

She was a mess. Her life was a mess. She was so strong on the island, so sure of herself but here, now, she no longer even knew who or what she was.

Juliet wrapped her arms in front of her, not wanting James to see her vulnerability. The woman he had initially fallen in love with on that island was so different to her and to this woman now. Yet he still loved her. Pity she had such low thoughts of herself though, funny and sad how right now both her timelines, the then, the now, blurred into each other.

"Nothing happened," she stressed.

He doesn't believe her. She can tell by the way his jaw clenches, the way his rock steady gaze doesn't waver from hers.

"Then why are so sad?" he softly asked, genuinely confused.

She longed to reassure him, wipe away the doubt and worry in his eyes.

Wordlessly she took the envelope from his hand.

"I'm going to sign it," she spoke, "we are going to fix him up for once and all," she continued, tentatively stroking his hair and then drawing him into her embrace.

"And then it will be over James," she murmured in his ear.

He pulled her tightly towards him. Buried his face in her long mane of hair and a memory so strong assailed him, making his gut hurt and he doesn't understand it. Only that it hurts seeing her hurting, looking so sad and forlorn. And there is something she's not telling him. He can sense it. One way or another he was going to get the truth out of her. But right now all that mattered was that she was safe. She was okay. And damn it but he was going to make sure she would always be okay.

A/N: I will try harder to not make you all wait so long for the next chapter and hopefully my writing mojo will return like it used to be! One can only hope. I also hope I still have some readers out there. It's been so long! Review if you can as they always do help in as much as making me want to persist with a story even when the writing flow just isn't happening! Even when my life is so crazily busy!

Not sure if this chapter turned out quite like I intended? I was so indecisive about who should remember and if they should even remember at all so any feedback on this matter would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks to all my loyal followers of this story and for sticking by me even with my updates being so slow and painful.