(Disclaimer: I don't own any of these characters and blah…now read my story!  Note that the characters may not be portrayed as you wish them to be and that it is my story so I HAVE THE POWER!  Hehehehe…)

The Flame in My Heart

It was silent all throughout the base, everyone sleeping peacefully except for one lone woman.  Her whitish hair was now sticking to her sweaty face, the droplets freezing on her face because the air was so cold inside.  Her eyes sagged due to lack of sleep these past few days.  Though they were safe now, she could not help but have other thoughts plague her dreams.  Thoughts that one such as her should not have, especially over this topic…

He would never like me in that way.  He had eyes for her and her perfect figure, her beautiful purple hair, her slim body, her sweet lips.  He loved her, and was her faithful servant, only in the end to be crushed by her.

She was more than just jealous of her.  She hated her for toying with her Commander's feelings.  The Commander that she loved as much as ever.  Quietly opening the desk drawer, she took out a candle and lit it, its dim light flickering, casting away some of the darkness.  Then she opened her wallet, finding in its pocket an old, black and white picture of her Commander.

It's been such a long time, hasn't it?  This picture I received the day before my first day under your employment was the only thing I have left.  No family pictures, no friends, no special objects.  Just this, my money, and my memories.

She smiled, though only for a few seconds.  He looks so young, so happy back then.  Oh, if only he could be that way today!  She sometimes would catch him with a smile when he day dreamed, but that seldom occurred, so most of the time he had a blank expression.  Ever since then…damn her…

Ever since he learned about his love's true intentions, he had withdrawn and had become much harder to talk to.  She and the others could never seem to lighten the expression on his face; his eyes were dull and he seemed to see past everybody.  She wanted to help him, but she did not know how to reach past his shields.  Only she…only she could do it before…why…

Suddenly the door creaked, the light from the hallway gently spilling into the room.  The figure of a man, his white hair mussed, his eyes red; it was her Commander that stood at the door.  Why is he up so late?  He motioned for her to come into the hallway before stepping away, leaving the doorway empty.  She took one last look at the picture before putting it away, leaving the candle to burn as she followed her commander.

She sat down next to him, though not touching, close enough to feel his body heat.  She stared at him, wondering what he wished to say.  He seemed to be staring back at her, but she dismissed the hope.  If anything, this is a dream and I am just lost in another useless fantasy.

Finally he was able to speak, though what he said took her by surprise.  Shifting himself so that he faced her directly, he said, "I've heard that you haven't been sleeping these past few days."  Was that the thing he had to say to her?  Why was he concerned?

"Yes," she replied.  Then taking a few seconds to pause, she continued, "Why do you ask me that question, Commander?"  He looked at her, surprised by her response.  He put a hand on her shoulder, his warmth transferring through her clothes and her skin to her inner self.  She probably looked like an idiot right now, her face probably blushing like a young girl.  She stared at him, trying to keep her emotions down.

"Is it wrong for me to care for your well-being?" he asked gently, his eyes showing some compassion.  Compassion?  What am I thinking?  He could not possibly care…  "Tell me why," he urged her, putting his other hand on her other shoulder.

"You" she replied as calm as possible, "are the Commander.  I am just an Element who is your subordinate.  And…"  You never cared before.  Why do you care now?  She was not able to finish, but turned her head away for a few seconds so he could not see her face.

"I never cared before, I see," he finished after a few moments, reading her thoughts.  "But I have changed, and I do care for you and the others."  She looked at him in surprise, but he just smiled, another blush probably coming across her face.  "Now tell me why you haven't been sleeping," he said.

"I…" she stammered.  "I…think about you."  Then racing, her thoughts hard to keep up with, she said hurriedly, "It was not your fault!  You had no control over your actions because you had no power.  You were as strong as a puppet, its strings easily manipulated by its master's hands.  She and Krelian…she used you!  How can people blame you for hurting others if you never learned anything else?"  She broke off suddenly, slumping on the wall, waiting for a sharp response.  He said nothing, though his hands moved to her face, his fingers wiping away the stray tears on her cheeks, her tears being the one thing she was not able to control.  He leaned in towards her, and before she knew what was happening, his lips were on hers.

His fingers gently caressed her cheeks as the warmth traveled through her whole being.  Unsure of what was happening, she could not help but break away.  What are these feelings?  Is this a mere attraction or more?  Her thoughts were too clouded; she could not think anymore.  It had been her first kiss.  Though it was the mere touch of lips, it was enough to awaken these strange emotions she had never felt in reality before.  Her heart sped to rates she could not control.  Why am I suddenly so helpless?  Why won't my body do anything?

Her eyes stared at his in shock as they suddenly came closer again.  His hands moved down her back to her waist, bringer her closer to him as lips touched again, a heat produced that overcame the coldness of the night.  His mouth massaged hers; the feeling so wonderful but yet it frightened her.  She was falling, her hands going around his neck as she tried to stay balanced.  Though only the wall behind her kept her from lying flat on the floor as the two lost their balance.  The impact awoke her from her thoughts.  She realized what was really going on, and suddenly she became confused.  Why is he doing this?  This is not the man that I know…  With her mouth moving against his, she asked him the question in her thoughts.  It would end up being a big mistake.

"Commander…what…are…you…doing…" she mouthed, the only words she could think of saying.  The hands around her waist stiffened, and then he broke away, turning his head away from hers, not able to look at her face anymore.  What have I done wrong?  She tried to think over what happened but it was too difficult for her scattered brains.  Unable to say anything, she could only feel the awkward silence between them that seemed to bring the feeling of coldness back to her face, making her shiver again.

Turning around, though still not able to look at her face, he finally whispered, "I'm sorry."  "I'm sorry?"  How can he be sorry?  If any wrongdoing occurred, it was my fault.  He stood up and without a glance, walked quickly down the hallway, away from her.  She could only stare at his retreating figure before realizing he was leaving her.

"Wait!" she cried, but her voice could not stop him.  Staring at the ground, she whispered to no one, "You should not be sorry.  I was the one who was wrong.  I promise never to do that again."

Deciding she should go to sleep, she stood up, taking one last longing look down the hallway that he had walked to reach her.  It was never meant to be.  A Commander and his subordinate could never be together in any way.  Especially if I was that person.  She shook her head before entering through the door, shutting it tightly behind her.  Looking at the small desk, she noticed that the candle she had lit before had burned out.  She laughed, realizing how a simple act like that could be the same as something so complicated, so hard to explain.  Even Nature is mocking me.  She sighed, then slipped into her bed, pulling the covers over her body, burying her head in the pillow.

And inside, she felt the flame had burned out inside her own heart.

(A/N: It's done!  Please tell me what you think about this, even if it's negative.  And please put some reasons in your review if it is negative.  Thanks!)