A/N: Gotta warn you, *Fall of Night First Chapter Spoilers* to any of those who haven't read the excerpt! Don't read if you don't want to be spoiled! For the rest of you...read on! :) Okay, this is one I've been trying to get up for almost 2 weeks now, buuuut life kept getting in the way. It popped in my head when I read the Fall of Night excerpt on the Morganville website...it's basicly what was going through Myrnin's head during Claire's departure scene. Most of the actual dialogue comes from the excerpt, so rights to those go to Rachel Caine, but all of Myrnin's thoughts, his last words and the Welsh at the end are from me. Hope you enjoy! :)

It didn't matter what I said or how I said it, she was having none of it. She was more stubborn than a vampire, which was saying something.

I had a brief fantasy where I simply picked her up, threw her in the back of my vehicle and drove back into the Morganville city limits, nevermind what she or Amelie said or wanted. It was just so ridiculous. Claire, my Claire, leaving...It was happening so fast, I couldn't comprehend it.

"I wish it was otherwise. I'd rather you stayed here, safe." I said quietly.

She burst out laughing at that, and I didn't bother to hide my hurt feelings. She just didn't understand. At least if she was here, with me, where I could see her and keep and eye on her, I could keep her safe. I would know she was okay, instead of fretting about her well-being from my lab while she was off at that school, that MIT, so very far away from Morganville...and me.

She sobered when she saw my look. "I - never mind." she said, shaking her head. "Maybe being safe isn't the best thing all the time. I need to be sure who I am out there, Myrnin. I need to be Claire, for a while, and find out who I am, deep down. Not part of something else that's so much more - confident than I am."

I knew deep down that she was talking about me as well as the boy, Shane, which made me feel even more guilty. I hated the thought that I was one of the reasons she was leaving...there was cold comfort in having others to blame for your misfortunes, but knowing that I had no one to blame but myself made everything worse.

My throat felt as though it would close up, all of a sudden. I saw her face soften a little when she looked into my eyes. My thoughts jumped suddenly to that night just a few days ago, with her begging me not to leave. What was it she had said then?

"You matter. To me."

Just those words had set me off, and I had admitted to feelings I knew we were both uncomfortable talking about. Feelings I was in danger of showing again, though neither of us could afford it at the moment.

So instead of the words I longed to say, I said something that was just as true. Something both easier for me to say and for her to hear.

"I will miss you, Claire. You know that."

"I know," she said softly, looking me straight in the eye. I held her gaze and tried to convey all that I was feeling at the moment, praying she would feel it too. "I'll miss you too."

It was all I could take. I threw my arms around her and pulled her close, not caring if it was too strong or too sudden. I could have kissed her, but I didn't. Neither of us could take that, not right now. Her heart rate picked up and she squeaked in startled surprise, but I stepped away before she could reject me, or worse; I didn't think I could hold it together if she embraced me back.

I turned away from her under the guise of gazing at the horizon, and the slowly rising sun.

We engaged in some conversation I wasn't entirely present for; she wanted me to leave before the sun came up or her parents caught sight of me, but I wasn't leaving her alone for God-knew-what to harm her. No, with me she would be safe.

"They're coming. You should go." she said suddenly as she caught sight of an automobile's headlights over the far hill.

"Should I not see you off?" I hoped my voice didn't sound nearly as tight as I felt.

"In that get-up?" she asked incredulously.

I saw nothing wrong with my wardrobe. "It's most elegant!"

"When you were partying down with Beethoven, maybe, but today you look like you're on your way to a fancy dress ball."

"So I ought to have worn the casual shirt with it, then?" I asked.

She smiled again, and her expression warmed me all over. "God, no. You look great. Just not … period appropriate. So go on, I'll be fine, okay?"

If my heart was still beating, it would have been in my throat. I went over the millions of things I wanted to say to her in my head, but only managed to remind her that she could call me if she needed.

"I won't forget," she said. "You'd better get in your car. Sun's coming up, I don't want you to get burned."

I could have cried with the concern she was showing. Instead I gulped and gave her my most formal bow and a quick warning, then dashed to my own automobile. I paused when I opened the door, struggling for the right words. Eventually I settled for the first thing to come to mind.

"I will miss you very much, Claire." I said, before quickly getting in and slamming the door before she could see my face.

It wasn't until I had driven off and away from her that I added the words I had been so terrified of saying aloud in front of her. "I love you." I whispered softly.

I passed her housemate's black hearse as I drove off, it going at speeds even faster than I in the direction I had just come from. The thought of Claire's strange friend behind the wheel, yelling and cursing like a sailor at her for not saying good-bye, was suddenly amusing.

I started chuckling, then laughing, though the distraction did little. I could still feel the stabbing pain in my chest, far worse than a silver-tipped stake, and the dampness on my cheeks from the tears.

Byddaf yn gweld eisiau yn fawr iawn, fy Claire. Mae mwy nag y byddwch byth yn gwybod.

A/N: Phew! I think this is the only fic I've written that doesn't have a happy ending...

Song recommendation: 'Here Without You' by 3 Doors Down, or 'Sad' by Maroon 5 (Just for you, nee-chan) ^_^

The English translation to the Welsh at the end of the story is "I will miss you very much, my Claire. More than you will ever know." Which was written via the wonders of Google Translate. ;)

Anyone who reads this now has to go read 'Come Back To Me' by the ever awesome ZombiesloveMangoes, who was challenged to some happy Clyrnin after my sad Clyrnin. Seriously, go read it, it Rox people. And don't forget to review and let her know, too. ;)

Please read and review, I always appreciate feedback! :)