Piano Man

A/N: I don't own Piano Man, The Memory, or Night World.

You don't need to listen to the song, but I HIGHLY RECOMMEND that you do.

This takes place about eight months after Ash leaves, around April.

Part One: The Memory by Mayday Parade

Ash's Point of View

Ash lay on his back, trying vainly to sleep. He had been at Thierry's mansion for a week this time, recuperating.

After finding the name of and tracking down a girl he'd screwed around about a year earlier, Ash had showed up at her apartment. He'd hoped to apologize.

The door had opened to reveal a man about five inches taller and forty pounds heavier than him. Her boyfriend? he wondered. Not that either fact mattered; the man smelled entirely human.

"Is Trina here?" Ash asked.

"What's it to you?"

"I'd like to speak to her."

No sooner had he said this when a vaguely familiar, distinctively female voice said, "Ash? Ash Mason?" That had been the last name he'd used. "What the hell are you doing here?"and Trina's head had poked around the man's shoulder.

Her hair was pink, as opposed to the vivid orange she'd favored the last time he'd seen her. When he'd left her alone in a hotel room, minus a pint of blood. Ash had strung her along for about three months before becoming bored. Hence the abandonment at the hotel.

The confrontation had gone downhill from there. "I'd like to apologize," Ash said, "for what I did to you."

"Apologize, hmm?" Trina asked, and there had been a strange tone in her voice. She stepped around the hulking man in her doorway to stand in front of Ash. "You. Want to apologize?"

Not knowing what to say, Ash had just nodded.

"Apologize," Trina repeated, and then her hand had come out of nowhere and cracked across his face.

Ash had stepped back, stunned but not entirely surprised.

"You're not forgiven," Trina said. "I do not appreciate being used." She retreated behind her boyfriend.

You didn't seem to care much a year ago, Ash thought, but instead said, "I'm sorry, Trina. Really, I am."

Trina had turned to the other man. "Tommy," she said, in the same tone as before, "I don't think he understands that I want him to screw off."

Ash really should've expected the fist, should've been able to dodge it easily. But he hadn't been looking at the man. He'd been imagining Mary-Lynette's face when he finished his list of failures, with this new addition. The blow had caught him unawares and knocked him sprawling, filling his nostrils with the scent of his own blood. From where he laid on the sidewalk, Ash heard the door to Trina's house slam shut.

That had been six days ago now, and it seemed like Ash's broken nose would heal before his broken pride.

I'm not going to make it, Ash realized. One of these days I'm going to screw up or lose my nerve, and go running back to her. And she won't accept me.

Its only four more months, a little voice in his head said, sounding suspiciously like Quinn.

Shut up! he told it.

He got up and went to the desk in the corner of the room. He pulled out a few sheets of paper and a pen and began to write:

Dear Mary-Lynette,

I miss you.

I slew another dragon for you, and I got punched in the nose for it. Can you believe that? Of course you can. I wish you were here to kick me in the shins, because even though it would hurt, it would mean that you were here, with me.

I wish I could tell you where I am, but then I wouldn't be able to send this letter. My boss has me running other missions in addition to my personal agenda.

I'm going to come back, Mare. I promised, and I'm going to keep that promise. Keeping a promise—that's going to be my favorite dragon. There are times when I have to lock myself in my room to keep myself from running to you, even if I had to swim across an ocean.

Would you still love me then, even if I was salty and sweaty and smelled like fish? Would you still let me hold you, if I took a bath first? What if I didn't?

I love you, Mary-Lynette. I love you so much that it hurts, more than my broken nose.

It's been eight months. Only half that time again, and I'll be back. Even if I'm not done, I'll come back. I'll come back to you. And if you send me away again, I'll go. I'll slay as many dragons as it takes.

I really hope you get this letter, and that you believe that I'll keep my promise.

Your Soulmate,


She is everywhere I go,

Everyone I see,

Winter's gone, and I still can't sleep.

Summer's on the way,

At least, that's what they say

But these clouds won't leave.

Happy Reading,

Separate Entity