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"okay now, we've learned our lesson from the last few days. When we see a claw…we avoid it. Understand?" Maura asked smiling at Jane and talking very 'teacher' like. Jane smiled back and nodded. She got a wicked grin on her face.

"What?" Maura asked knowing Jane was up to something.

"The Claw!" Jane said drawing out the word 'claw'.

"The claw?" Only Maura would miss this fantastic Jim Carry reference.

"The claw!" Jane said again, this time holding her hand up as Maura slipped on the last of her clothes.

"Sometimes…you frighten me," Maura laughed.

"My arm," Jane said holding the side of her arm.

"What wrong with you arm?" Maura asked moving closer to Jane.

"This pain…in my arm…oh no!" Jane said rubbing her side arm. "It's the claw!"

Maura's eyes rose as she finally caught on to what Jane was doing. "Don't even think about it!" Maura shouted playfully as she began to back up from Jane.

"Nothing can stop the claw!" Jane said charging after Maura who ran out of the plane and off down the beach.

"Stay away from me!" Maura yelled as she ran laughing.

"No….stay away from the claw!" Jane shouted catching up to Maura quickly. Jane started tickling Maura's side. Maura tried desperately to loosen herself from the 'claw' but failed. She laughed so hard she cried.

"I give! I give!" Maura screamed between fits of laughter. Jane herself was laughing pretty hard as well.

"Oh…too funny. I can't believe how long it took for you to get that," Jane said looking down at Maura who was laying underneath her. Maura went to answer but her position, under Jane caught her attention. She opened her mouth to speak then closed it when no words came out.

"You caught me by surprise," she said softly looking up at Jane.

"I did?"

"Yeah," Maura smiled. Maura quickly realized Jane was making no attempts to remove herself from Maura. "Can I get my legs back here?" Maura asked smiling motioning to their position.

Jane sat up, but still on top of Maura. "Yeah you're in a jam huh?" Jane said looking down realizing she had the upper hand.

"A pickle I like to call it." The feeling of Jane's thighs wrapped around her waist was all too much. Maura was certain she could die happy right now. Did Jane have to squirm so much?

"All right, I guess I can let you up now," Jane said slowly moving off Maura.

"Thank you…I think," Maura laughed as Jane helped her up. "Wow, we ran far huh?"

"You're quite the speed demon there Maura," Jane smiled.

"Thank you…track."

"You did track? Get out of here!"

"I did…freshman year. I was pretty good too."

She stopped and turned back at a still Maura. She looked Maura up and down and smiled. "I'm just picturing you in those cute little running shorts," she said as she winked and continued walking away. She left behind a speechless, grinning Maura.

"Got two!" Jane shouted as she plopped in two more crabs.

"I've caught one fish. Well two really- but I think one was too small…so I let him go."

"Okay so one fish, some bananas, four crabs…I think we're good then."

"Yeah…I'll go get firewood."

"Want some help" Jane asked.

"No I think I'm good. You go ahead and get them cooking. I'll be back in a few minutes." Maura smiled. Jane nodded and went to work on dinner. Maura walked away from the camp. She was about 30 yards out when she kneeled down by a tree and started laughing softly to herself.

"Why me?" she giggled and began to collect stray wood.

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"I miss music," Jane said that night by the fire.

"Me too."

Maura paused and looked up at the stars above. She looked at Jane who seemed lost in the fire ambers. Music. Maura cleared her throat softly.

"Love, I get so lost sometimes. Days pass and this emptiness fills my heart." Maura sang and looked at Jane who now watched with a soft expression on her face. Maura was singing for her. Maura went on. "When I want to run away I drive off in my car. But with sheltered wings I come back to the place you are. And all my instincts, they return. The grand facade so soon will burn, without a notice without my pride, I reach out from the inside." Maura paused and smiled at Jane for a moment. "In your eyes, the light the heat. In your eyes I see the doorway of a thousand churches, the resolution of all the fruitless searches. Oh I see the light and the heat, I want to be back in your eyes. I want to touch the light and heat I see in your eyes." Maura looked back into the fire.

"Love…I don't like to see so much pain," she continued softly, "so much wasted and this moment keeps slipping away. I get so tired working so hard for our survival. I look to the time with you to keep me awake and alive. And all instincts, they return. The grand façade so soon will burn. Without a noise, without my pride…I reach out from the inside…" Maura stopped and smiled at Jane. "Some music for you," she spoke softly.

"That was beautiful," Jane smiled. "Thank you."

"You're welcome." Maura smiled placing another piece of wood on the fire.

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It had just been one of those nights. Things seemed less complicated for them for some reason. They decided to take a walk down near the shoreline. The moon was full. It lit up the beach, almost as though God himself had turned on the back yard porch. The warm breeze blew off the ocean and lightly played with the skin on their faces. The smell of salt water and fresh air combined with the smell of the sand was almost intoxicating to them both.

It was really just so romantic.

Jane and Maura lay there side by side on the blanket they had got from the plane. The sky was so clear. It was dark and the stars were shining bright.

Arms slightly touching they watched the wonders above them. "It's beautiful tonight," Jane whispered. She was almost too afraid to speak, fearful she might ruin the perfect moment that had been handed to them.

"Yeah it really is." Maura agree facing her friend and smiling.

With each movement or point up, they found themselves moving slightly closer till there was no space between them. It was just an unspoken understanding. The contact…with the past few days they had been having…felt too good to be denied and they both knew it. With everything that had they both needed this closeness. It was as if the whole world had shut the door on them and alone they lay side by side. No fears, no worries. Just occasional laughter and sweet compliments of how much one meant to the other.

"Jane I know I said this before," Maura said softly. "But I'm really glad you're here with me. I don't think…I don't think I would have made it if it wasn't for you." Jane didn't answer; she just took Maura's hand in her own.

For Maura this time with Jane felt so good. It was a chance for her to leave the worries of what could have been, what might be, and what was to come…and shut it out. To leave the fears and doubts she had about her feelings for her best friend at the door. Here, there was nothing more than Maura and Jane. Jane and Maura.

'I love her,' each one thought yet never daring to express these emotions out loud. Fear of what the other might think hindered it. But tonight, something unspoken passed between them. It was a mutual understanding of how the other felt. They just knew it in the way the touched, the way they smiled at one another. And with the passing hours the touching became more regular. Heads on shoulders, hugging, and finally at the last shooting star of the evening…a simple kiss.

Maura initiated it.

She never in her right mind expected Jane to respond the way she had. The kiss deepened and before either of them knew it, they were now laying not side by side…but rather with Maura on top of Jane. Jane placed her hands behind Maura's neck, pulling her in closer, deepening the kiss even more. They stayed like this for several moments. The kiss finally broke apart and the friends looked into each other's eyes. Maura leaned up and watched for Jane's reaction. Jane eyes remained closed.

Maura, rolled off Jane. "I'm sorry," she said softly. "I shouldn't have."

"No…no…it's okay," Jane assured her friend.

"I don't know what got into me," Maura laughed nervously. "Must just be the evening I guess."

"I guess," Jane said softly touching her lips. Maura had kissed her and it was the most amazing thing she'd ever experienced.

"It's late…why don't we get to bed," Maura smiled.

"O…Okay…" Jane stuttered slightly. Maura stood and lowered her hand to Jane to help pull her up. Once up, Jane leaned in and kissed Maura on the cheek softly. "I love you Maura."

"I love you too," Maura smiled and they walked back to the plane…hand in hand.

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Maura couldn't sleep. Though that seemed no surprise to her. She kept glancing over at Jane, who for all appearances seemed to be sleeping sound. Maura slowly and quietly rose from their bed and left the plane. She sat down and glanced up at the sky.

"What were you doing tonight?" Maura asked herself quietly. She kept going over the last few months in her mind. So much had changed…she had changed.

'Maura, darling…everything happens for a reason,' her mother had told her one day after Maura had learned about the truth behind her adoption.

"Ian," Maura said shaking her head. "God what a fool I was," she whispered looking down at the sand. She glanced back at the plane. Jane. Jane has Casey. Jane had Casey. "She only kissed you cause she got wrapped up in the moment," Maura said softly to herself. She knew how it felt to be wrapped up in the moment. She'd been there before. For all Maura knew, Jane had been happy with Casey. Casey certainly seemed happy with Jane. All the times Maura had seen them at school, holding hands…killed her a bit more inside.

'I hate to tell you this, but I'm very, very happy
And I know that's not what you'd expect from me at all
I'm not the kind to smile and bow out gracefully
I always wanted to take it to the wall.'

We've all spent those nights awake laying in bed wondering how our life might be different if only we'd done…well whatever it was that might have change the course of our paths. Maura wondered what her life would have been like if Jane had told her she loved her back all those months ago.

'But I found somebody with a heart as big as Texas
I found an angel with the golden wings
She saw me down here in the dark somehow
And everything is different now.'

Jane was the most perfect match for Maura's heart. And as much as Maura tried to make herself believe differently, she did love Jane still…with all her heart.

'Yeah, I miss the old crowd sometimes
And the wild, wild nights of running
You know, a starving soul can't live like that for long
You go around in circles that just keep getting smaller
You wake up one morning and half your life is gone.'

But loving something and having something were sadly…two different things. She loved Jane…but she did not have her…nor would she ever have her. Maura shook her head. She liked Casey, he was a good man. He treated Jane with respect and Maura was happy for that. Maura looked back up the stars and recalled the kiss she and Jane had shared a few hours ago.

"So soft," Maura smiled and closed her eyes. Jane's kiss was better than anything Maura's imagination had conjured up over the years. It was almost perfect…and Maura decided it could never happen again. Not for her sake or Jane's.

'I got so tired of that, I got so lonely
I dropped down and I called out to Heaven
"Send me someone to love."
And Heaven shot back, "You get the love that you allow."

And everything is different now.'

"Just once…I want to be the one who wins," Maura said looking back to the plane where Jane slept sound. "Just once I want to be the one who falls in love and has someone love me back you know?" she asked.

Maura wasn't sure who she was talking to, but either way she hoped someone would answer her. The sun was starting to come up in the backdrop. "Beautiful," Maura smiled.

Jane ran out of the plane. She managed to round the corner before she threw up. Maura jumped up and ran to her friend's side. "Are you okay?" she asked rubbing Jane's back.

"Yeah…just feeling kind of nauseous," Jane said wiping the side of her mouth. "Urgh," she mumbled.

"Why don't you just sit down…"

Jane began throwing up again. "Must have been something you ate," Maura said.

"God I hope not," Jane said. "You ate what I ate. I hope you don't get sick too."

"I feel fine," Maura answered.

"I feel better now," Jane said standing upright. "Actually- what are you doing out here?"

"Oh…just came to watch the sun rise."

"Oh…nice. Mind if I join you?" Jane asked.

"I'd love it," Maura smiled as they made their way back to where Maura had been sitting before.

'Oh, and it's sweet to know
The wisdom that living brings
Since I got a telegram from the god of simple things.'

'She said "I don't care what you do for a living."
She said "I don't care what kind of car you drive."
"All I want to know right now is what do you believe in
And what it means for you to be alive.
Will you stand here in this fire with me?
Are you ready for another life?"
So I bit that bullet, and took that vow

And everything is different now
Everything is different now.'
-Don Henley

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Thank you all for following the story, the feedback and thoughts. I should have new updates coming out on all my stories in the next day and I have two new stories to post. Thank you again for taking the time to review. It means an awful lot to me.

TBC