Author: Paladin Steelbreaker

Title: Cries from the heart

Copyright: July 2002

Rating:       PG

Spoilers:      For the episode with the deck of tarot cards.

Keywords:      Sydney

Summary:      Sydney has been hiding something. And now she is at the end of her rope.   

Legalese: All characters except those noted below with their respective rights, properties and copyrights are the property of their respective creators, authors, owners, producers and agencies. These characters are used without permission. No copyright infringement is intended or meant, and no money will be made from this story. This story may be copied in its entirety, and may be distributed as long as all copyright information remains.

Author's Notes: I want to warn all readers. I'm taking Sydney way out of character here. Or maybe not. I always thought she seemed a bit too calm, too controlled. As if she were hiding behind some sort of façade, and only let people see what she wanted of her personality. And I started to wonder. If I was right, why would someone do such a thing? All though it isn't very new thinking, this is what I came up with. 

Dedications: I would like to dedicate this story, how ever amateurish, to some of the greatest fanfic. authors out there. Namely:

Steven Pantovich

Tim Knight

Mike Weyer

Nick Midian

Saber Shadowkitten


Joseph B

And the ones responsible for the magnificent stories/Series:

Winters are always harsh (and the sequel)

years later/year inn, year out.

Sorry that your names have slipped from my mind. You did a wonderful job. Your stories, were among the few first ones that I read. The ones that woke my interest for fanfic. Sadly I don't seem to find those stories on the internet anymore. With the exception for Winters are always harsh. Are there somebody out there that knows where to find them?

If you want to comment on my story.(please, please, PLEASE!!) Compliments, or fire spitting criticism. Or if you know where I can find the before mentioned "Missing" stories, you are welcome to mail me

At this address:

And now finally on with the story:

Cries from the heart

Sydney Fox, world known relic hunter, and expert on ancient artefacts, was walking through the corridors of the university. She was heading for her office, not really noticing were she went, just following a deeply ingrained habit. A habit formed from working there for the past seven years. She walked in a haze, not paying attention to people, as she careless brushed past them. If one looked carefully, one could see that her usually brilliant and energetic appearance was gone. Dark bags under her eyes were artfully hidden with make up, and her shoulders sagged a bit under her tailored suit.

As she entered the front office, Claudia was busy reading her tarot cards. Again, Sydney thought with a bit of irritation. Ever since they went looking for that blasted tarot card in that old Gypsy ruin, she had been reading those cards all the time. Always sighing, and looking totally lost. She really had been swept away by that gypsy. Sydney had never seen any of Claudia's crushes last more than a week, and now it had gone two months.

"Get off those blasted tarot cards, and clear my schedule for the rest of the morning, If not the world is coming to an end, I will not be disturbed", she barked out. Ignoring Claudia's shocked look, as she slammed the door to her personal office behind her.

As she sank down in her comfy chair, she let out a weary sigh. Last night had been one of those nights. She had spent the entire night tossing and turning, or walking restlessly across the floor. She closed her eyes shut and hid her face in her hands. Trying to press back the tears that burned behind her eyelids. "Get a grip woman", she said to her self. Trying to muster her usual calmness. But to no avail, she was closing in on the end of her rope. She didn't know how much longer she could take this.

Usually she could fool herself. Lull her self into a false security, by convincing her self that he was just a friend and a comedy relief. But deep down she knew he was more. Much more. And then something would happen. It could be a smile, something he said, or a past memory, that lead to a night where it wouldn't be denied. Those nights she spent tossing, turning, and pacing the floor. Or on especially hard nights, she would go out and drink herself into oblivion. Something she never used to do before.

And to top it all of. She was sexually frustrated for the first time in her life. She never had problems getting laid. Men seemed to be throwing themselves at her. But lately she just couldn't go through with it. She would get to a certain point, and then she would back out. Ridiculously it felt like she was cheating on him, even though they were only working partners. She knew she fascinated him. And she knew that he wanted her. But he held him self at bay, as the polite Englishman he was. Always professional, polite and surprisingly innocent. It would be so easy to seduce him, and yet she didn't. Cause she knew that for her, it would be far more than just sex. And the thought scared her to no end.

She knew she had a reputation for being somewhat of a man-eater outside of work. And she guessed it was well earned, thinking of all the one-night stands, and short relationships of her past. But most of them had been safe. They were just sex. Nothing more. Just the way she wanted it. Nice and manageable. Cause the few times she had let herself feel something more, she had ended up getting hurt. Badly hurt.

She shuddered, and the tears finally trickled down her cheeks, as she though of her first love. She had been so young and naïve, and so much in love. Hans had been so charming and gorgeous. And when they moved together she thought she was in heaven.

That was, until he changed. He became aggressive and demanding. And she never seemed to do anything right. And every time she failed, he would beat her around. A half choked sob escaped her as she remembered the last time. When she told him she was pregnant, he had totally lost it. She had ended up in hospital, with three broken ribs, a bruised collarbone, and a fractured scull. She had lost the child that day. That was when she had started studying martial arts. She had sworn that she never would feel that helpless again.

There had been a few that had breached her mental defences since then, but they all had ended up hurting her in one way or another. So she had taught herself to shut off her emotions. To always be in control. To hide her self behind the facade she had risen. The calm and self certain, athletic, relic hunter and expert on ancient artefacts, that never seemed to be afraid, or uncertain. 

Until now. Now there were cracks in her armour, and she couldn't seem to fix them. The nights came more often now, and she knew why. Deep down she knew why. She loved him. She loved him with all her heart, and body. She loved Nigel Bailey. But she was too much of a coward to do something about it. She just kept on hiding behind stupid rules and regulations. Not willing to risk her heart.

Bha! Who was she kidding? She had already lost her heart. What was she gonna do! She sniffed and angrily dried her tears. She had to get her self together. He could be here any minute now. Hastily she reached into her purse, and started fixing her make up. Finished with that she closed her eyes, and took deep breaths to calm her self. Then she started doing Thai Chi.

Ten minutes later Nigel came inn and headed for Sydney's office. "I wouldn't do that", Claudia said. "Sydney is in an unusually bad mood today. Its best leaving her alon..."

She never finished as Sydney came barging out with a mischievous grin on her face. "There you are Nigel. Get packed! We are taking a little trip to Norway. We are on the search for the crown of Harald Hårfagre, the man that first gathered Norway into one whole kingdom.

Claudia, take care of ticket reservations, and such. I'm out of here. I have to get packed."

And with that she disappeared in a whirlwind of motion. Leaving Both Claudia and Nigel slightly shocked. As usual.