Diane turned on the saddest music she could find on the radio, and then sat down, pouring herself a drink in the meantime. She couldn't believe the events of the past few hours, ones which were sure to haunt her for some time. She and Sam had broken up, each saying the nastiest things they could think of in the process. She hadn't really wanted to hurt him; she just wanted him to feel what she had been feeling at the time. For such a promising one time scholar such as herself, it had never occurred to her before the power of words. Words could bring life or cause death. They could open wounds from which one may never recover. They could build or they could destroy, depending on the manner in which they were used. As someone proud of always having the last word, it drove her crazy to no end to know that the final word on her and Sam's relationship had been delivered.

The final word. It was all so final. She had always been driven to distraction by Sam and his juvenile antics, but never before had she thought of Sam Malone as cruel. There was no other way to put it. Once he slapped her face, Diane realized that it was the beginning of the end. For the act itself, she knew that she could forgive him, but the meaning behind it was unforgivable. He had wanted to hurt her in the worst way possible, and in that he succeeded. Not only had Sam wounded her outside, he wounded her very soul, the essence of what made Diane Diane. He'd turned on her, and from that point, she knew that there was no turning back.

All she wanted to do was call him, but she knew they had said enough to each other to last a lifetime. He'd hurt her, she'd hurt him, yet somehow Diane found herself wanting to seek solace in those comforting arms of his. But she knew that she'd betrayed his trust by having that portrait commissioned, and worse yet, she had done it deliberately, but still, they could get past that, couldn't they?

She knew that she might be able to recover from this blow, but she also knew that Sam couldn't- or wouldn't. He was a stubborn man all right, and when he'd had his ego hurt, there was no telling what he was capable of doing. She'd seen that tonight. How could someone who'd once cried over her cat say the things that he did tonight? Was it possible that she had misjudged Sam after all?

She couldn't have. Sam was the strong, caring, sensitive jerk of a man that she'd always known and loved. Theirs was a grand love affair, one for the books, and she couldn't let it end this way. She had to make things right, even if it killed her. The weather outside matched how she was feeling- it was pouring rain, thunder and lightning, dark as could be, but she didn't care. Diane didn't even grab her jacket as she ran out the door, stopping only to lock it, and ran to catch a cab.

Just as she'd hailed one, she could hear her name being called from far away. Was it possible? Did he really share her thoughts- were they on the same page for once in their relationship?

She turned around and saw Sam running to her, with his not even wearing a jacket himself. Before she could open her mouth and say a word, he pulled her close to him and kissed her as passionately as he ever had. The tears fell down her face, mixing well with the raindrops, and he gently pushed aside the stray hair that had been clinging to her face.

"Why did you do it, Sam?" Diane laughed. "Why are you here?"

Sam didn't even hesitate. "I flipped a coin," he smiled knowingly. "Heads I walk to you, tails I run."

He remembered! Oh their history, both the good and the bad, flooded her mind, and before she could speak another word, he kissed her again. This time, Sam had looked back, and it led him where he belonged- in her arms.

The end