Author's NOte: Having finished Mark of the Golden Dragon, I felt compelled to write. Being in the middle of the descriptive pictorial section of my writing class, this is what came of that compulsion. It's just a short narrative of Bess's POV during MotGD (ch 49) so spoilers if you haven't read it

Bess' Point of View at the end of Mark of the Golden Dragon

James is dressing now for his ride, what will be his final ride, final kill. After this it will be over, his revenge assuaged and we will be together.

He looks younger, having shaved his beard, shortly after I gave him the news of Flashby's expected appearance. The evident anticipation in his eyes also eludes to a younger man, a younger dashing man. He dresses in black, head to toe. First he pulls his black britches over his strong legs and ties them just above his hips. I watch him as I prop my elbow on the bed, worrying, feeling that something is going to go wrong. I voice my concern, but he dismisses it saying that Flashby will come, and he will finish him. The idea excites him, which in turn distresses me, but I love him and that is why I let him go. He continues dressing, covering his chest in black, lace spilling from his throat and wrists.

I lie down on the bed, my back to James and let a silent tear slide from my eye's corner, over the bridge of my nose, across my cheek and onto the white linen. I fear for his safety surely, but I fear also that she will reveal herself. She, who he is fighting for, Jacky his Jacky. He speaks it in his sleep, her name. Never the same emotion, sometimes he wakes screaming her name in fear, that same fear which I dispel, but no that is not what I fear. My fear lies in his recitation of her name with such reverence and love unbefitting the tramp who passed through less than a fortnight ago.

When I rise and return my gaze to James he is mostly dressed. His ebony Jacket and boots gleam elegantly in contrast to his pale complexion, and bare face. I am still not use to this clean cut James, but I plan to in the future. He covers further with the long black coat, almost completing the look. I grab the silk mask and eye patch, handing him them gently. He throws a smile my way, but not a loving one, a hungry one. He takes the mask and ties it, tighter than normal to accommodate the lack of facial hair, before pulling it down around his neck, as he does not cover until he can hear the beat of horse's hooves.

I leave my hand out with the eye patch, but he merely shakes his head.

"He shall see my face before he enters Hell."

I keep the patch myself, for safekeeping, and follow him out of my room. He enters the stables and his horse, Mary, neighs angrily. I follow and close the door hoping we didn't attract attention. He lifts his black saddle onto Mary and gives her a pet and an apple. I have never seen him like this before.

He gives me a quick kiss and smile before mounting. I head to the doors, and open them slowly, wishing this moment to last. Again my hope has been betrayed as he sails past me out the door and into the sunset.

~ To be continued ~

A's Note: It's just a two-shot so I'll try to update soon, but no promises. Please review, I don't mind flames!