Quick one shot after reading and then watching The Host.

I am playing with the characters but idea and all recognizable belongs to the author SM.

Hope you all enjoy and as usual I love getting reviews :-)

To any who have read my other stories I am working on a couple stories and hopefully will have more to post soon!

The first night, I slept warm between Jamie curled on one side and Ian's sprawled body on the other, listening to the rain, perfectly relaxed and content. As each night passed, I slept less content.

"Wanda?" Mel tugged my arm gently. "Can we talk?"

I nodded and followed her as she led me to the room she had shared with Jared. We sat in a dry corner watching the rain pour through the holes above.

"Mel?" I finally broke the silence.

"You seem tired."

I sigh, "Nobody lets me do anything."

"Bored?" She frowns at me, I shrug, "You know we don't have many, if any secrets."

I sent her a small smile, "No sister, we don't."

"So you know you can tell me anything."

I sigh again and nod as a blush spreads over Pet's face, "I haven't been sleeping well."

"It's not Jeb's snoring." She teases gently making me giggle as I shake my head. "So?" She presses gently.

"Do you think Pet is pretty?"

"I think you are beautiful, soul and body."

I nod playing with my finger nails, "Do you think Ian thinks so?"

She laughs, "Of course he does. Ian loves you. To him you are a goddess."

I shake my head as I wrap my arms around my knees and watch the rain, "He hasn't kissed me." I confide in a whisper.

Mel nods looking thoughtful, "Kiss him them." At my look of fear, insecurity and doubt she chuckles, "Jared needed some encouragement when I was younger too, remember."

"I'm on my tenth life." I remind her, "Even if you take out the time I was in a cryochamber I have been alive several human lifetimes."

"Yeah." She nods, "But Pet looks sixteen."

"She's eighteen." I defend but Mel just lifts her eyebrow and I look away, "Fine, seventeen but I am finally in a body that will let me use it and I can kiss him but he won't kiss me."

"Ian's twenty six. That body and so in people's minds, you as well, are underage. In our world, well our old world that wouldn't have been frowned upon Wanda, it would have been illegal."

"So Ian wont kiss me until Pet is an adult?"

"You Wanda, not Pet, until you are ready, if you want him to kiss you, show him that you are ready. Make him see you, like you did when I was there, in here he saw only Wanderer but now he's blinded by how young and innocent you seem, well you are really."


Mel shrugged, "Kiss him?" she suggests making me giggle, "Worked with Jared… that and a bit of convincing." She joined my laughter.

Jamie found us a little later, laughing still as we talked. He dragged us off to supper where Ian was already waiting with Jared at our usual spot. I got my plate and moved quickly to him trying not to blush as I considered kissing him. What if he didn't want me too? What if he didn't want this body? Mel's body hadn't wanted him. It was possible his didn't want Pet.

"What are you thinking about?" he whispered.

I smiled up at him, "Mel yelling at me when you kissed me." I tell him honestly.

"You were of two minds about it all." He winks.

I giggle, "I was."

He looks thoughtful but quickly turns back to his stew. I take a few more bites before deciding I am just not hungry. I handed my bowl over to Jamie and got up, to still the worry in Ian's eyes, I tell him, "I'm going to take a bath."

He nods and turns back to his food. It's two days later I find myself talking to the least likely person in the caves… besides Lacey, Sharon or Maggie, they still hated me. None of them had tried to kill me, or nearly succeeded the way Kyle had of course.

"Do you think you like Sunny so much because it's Jodi's body still or do you like Sunny in spite of her being a soul?" I ask him quietly as I come across him alone, checking on our carrot crops. I realize what I'd said, having been thinking it but not meant to voice it, I raised a hand to my mouth and shook my head, "I'm sorry."

Kyle stared at me for a minute, his expression morphing from shock to something softer, a kindness in his eyes I equated with Ian and not him. "I loved Jodi for a long time, I loved her with all I was and yes, that's her body and I'm attracted to her in ways I shouldn't feel about Sunny. She is sweet and gentle and innocent. I don't blame her for Jodi. I suppose its like identical twins. I lost my Jodi and I know that and I'm coming to accept it. Sunny looks exactly like her and the voice is the same but the way she talks, the person she is… it isn't Jodi. You understand?" I bite my lip and shake my head a little, Kyle sighs and runs a hand through his hair. "Jodi isn't there." He looked pained as he said it. "Sunny… she's someone else. I like her, for her. Maybe I'm… attracted to the body… more than is appropriate, because it's my Jodi's body but my head and my heart know that she's Sunny, not Jodi." I nod at him biting my lip in thought; "I'd never do anything… inappropriate… or hurt her in any way or anything."

I look up at him again and smile even as I feel my brows knit together in confusion. "Of course you wouldn't."

He nods and then frowns, "So then, why are you asking?"

"What do you mean?"

"If you aren't worried I'm being… well that I might do something wrong towards her, why are you asking?"

I shuffle my feet, "I just, wondered."

"Wanda?" He presses.

"How much is it the body?"

"How much is what the body? Me liking Sunny?" At my head shake he frowns again, "I know I'm not slow but maybe pretend for this conversation I'm not the sharpest tool in the O'Shea shed." At my confused look he chuckles and shakes his head, "Spell out exactly what it is you are asking me here Wanderer."

"Oh, I, um, I was just wondering is all. It's nothing."

"Wait." I turn back to his frowning face. "This has something to do with my brother, not me right?" I shift and blush and he frowns, "Ok, so the body… you mean like… sex?"

My blush deepens and I shake my head, knowing my large eyes have gone even wider in shock as I sputter, "No, I, um." Blurry images from Mel's memory surface, if Ian didn't want to kiss this body, no I wasn't going to think about more than just kissing.

"Look, last thing I want to think about is you and my baby brother… doing that." He frowns, "You know since Sunny, and well, you in this innocent little body… I might have to punch him for taking advantage, so will Jared come to think of it but hey." He hold sup his hands, "You two are technically adults and um… maybe you should talk to you know Mel or hell anyone but the dude's older brother because hell didn't I try to kill you? Why come talk to me?"

"I didn't." I admitted, "I just came here and you were here and I was thinking and blurted and you tried to kill me a couple times but it doesn't really answer the question anymore than Mel and from her body I remember, but then I thought without anyone else in my head, but he's… different." It all came out in a rush and he frowned and then chuckled.

"Maybe I am slow because I'm still not entirely sure the question."

"If it's the body."

"What is the body? Mel's body, Jodi's body, Sunny's body?"

"Sunny's body is Jodi's body."

Kyle gave me a pained look, "Not anymore. Jodi's gone, I'm learning to accept that. Sunny is here and she looks and sounds like my Jodi but that is Sunny now, not Jodi. Just like you are Pet now and she is gone to another planet and whoever that body belonged to before Sunny is long gone."

"So you don't love Sunny?"

"I do love Sunny." He nods, "I just understand that she isn't Jodi."

"Do you want to kiss her?"

He looks sheepish, "I'm attracted to her, of course, she's beautiful, it's my wife's body, I remember every inch of it but it doesn't mean I let myself forget she is good and pure and innocent. I'd never take advantage of that just because I desire her. I really do love Sunny, for Sunny and I'd never do anything to hurt her, no matter who she looked like."

"That doesn't help." I sigh frustrated.

"Yeah well I'm still confused, are you asking about Ian or Sunny here because if you are worried I'd do anything untoward to Sunny because she is in Jodi's body, don't be, I wont. As for anything you do or don't do with my brother, I'm not sure how I can help you there, except give him a bloody nose for anything he did you thought was inappropriate… he didn't push you for something did he, because I might have killed you but I'd never allow something like that, ever."

"I don't even know what you're talking about. Ian is always wonderful to me, since that one time he tried to strangle me, or me and Mel really, he has protected and cared for me. As for Sunny, of course you wouldn't do anything to hurt her, I have eyes, I've seen you with her."

"So if it's not them… you? Your body? Is there something wrong with it?" His concern seemed odd to me, even with the changes since Sunny arrived. "Maybe we should get doc."

"No, please, its just, well, is there something wrong with this body? She seems pretty enough, young maybe and much weaker than Melanie, shorter too. Is it, I mean am I, well is there something unappealing about the body or is it because it's not Melanie's body? If Jodi came back in this body would you want her still or is it the body Sunny is in? Melanie's body loved Jared, so how much is the heart, the soul that loves and is loved and how much is the body?"

"If my Jodi came back in any body, I'd still love her. I think all this with Sunny has taught me I'm not the same man that loved her or the same one that lost her, both things changed me, just like meeting you or well you saving my life after I was trying to kill you changed me. Thick headed as I am, I did see you different after that. I do still love Jodi and always will but I have to let her go, she isn't coming back in another body."

"Right." I nod not sure the conversation has helped but with a lot to think about it.



"You were in Mel's body, and it loved Jared because Mel was inside too and she loved him. He loved her but even in her body, Jared didn't love you. Ian did, my brother does, so if you still have feelings for Jared…"

"I don't." I whisper as I turned his words over in my head. "You'd love her in another body but would you want her?" I finally ask looking at my feet.

After a moment of silence I hear him moving and his feet appear in my vision as he tilts my head up, "Is that the question because while I know the answer, maybe you should be asking my brother himself?"

"Asking me what?" His voice was dark, like I would expect from Ian and I jumped away from Kyle realizing what an intimate position we were in.

"Nothing." I blush looking away from him, "I was just, um, asking Kyle about Sunny."

"Wanda?" I know he can tell the lie in my voice, he can always tell, I'm still such an awful liar.

"Jeb says the rain should stop soon." I push the conversation away from my insecurities and an idea jumps at me to distract us all.

"Privacy." Kyle nods and his smile seems off, teasing and knowing.

I see the smile again in the kitchen and he winks at me, Mel asks why he's smirking at me. When I frown she tells me that is the funny smile. I blush and shrug, quickly distracted by Ian, he seems tense and quiet.

Neither of us sleep well. Ian is still tense and holds himself distant from me. He hasn't done that since the first night I slept between him and Jamie and that night it had only lasted a moment or two, this time it stretched through the night.

"Kyle?" I seek him out this time, I don't know why I go to him, I share everything with Mel but somehow her words don't help this time but his had the other day.

"Wanda." He smirks at me and winks making me blush.

"Stop that."


"Its… disconcerting."

"Says the alien counting down rainy days to sex up by baby brother." He snorts.

"I wasn't… I'm not." I stutter at him and then sigh, "It wasn't what I was talking about."

He frowns at me and again I am surprised at his soft expression, its full of concern and like last time we spoke it seems to me it fits more on Ian's face than his. "What is it?"

I chew my lip and the toss up my hands in frustration; I had come to him, though I still wasn't completely sure why, "He wont kiss me in this body. Does he not love me after all?"

Kyle snorts, "Ridiculous." Seeing my expression his smile becomes gentle again, "He loves you Wanda and I have no doubt he would have killed me that last time I almost killed you, he very happily would have banished me at any rate and we're brothers, born five fucking minutes apart."

"That was when I was Mel."

He frowns at me, "That what you've been on about bodies for?" He shakes his head, "Ian loves you, like I loved Jodi, he wouldn't give a flying fuck in space if you were inside Maggie, he'd still love you. I might heave chunks at that mental image." He grimaced making me giggle.

"He still hasn't kissed me." I sigh.

"You do look young, maybe Maggie would have been better." He teases.

"Right," I snort, "If it had been her in my head instead of Mel I might have just let you kill me."

Kyle lets out a loud laugh and hands me an empty basket to help him collect the ripe fruits from the crop.

"You could just, you know, encourage him a little."

I snort, "That's what Mel said."


"I don't know how." I admit with a blush making him laugh again.

"As human men we are pretty simple there ET, just kiss him."

"That's what Mel said." I admitted with a chuckle, "What's ET."

"It's a movie from a long time ago about a funny looking alien that ended up on our planet and was trying to get home to its planet. It stands for Extra Terrestrial."

"Earth is my home."

"I know." He rolls his eyes, "you are still an alien and you travelled to how many planets before finally finding home?"

I sigh and grumble, "It's better than centipede." He laughs again and we work rather companionably. "Kyle?"

"ET?" I roll my eyes but smile at him.

"What was it like when you were little?" I ask him in a small voice.

Kyle smiles alleviating my worry about asking and begins to tell me stories about him and Ian as children, it's not long before we are both laughing.

Ian is glaring at us as we finish our section. "Ian?" I question gently.

"Jeb says we need a supply run." He tells us turning away and walking quickly down the hall.

"Come on ET. Let's go stretch our legs." Kyle grins at me making me laugh at the silly nickname again.

The air seems tense as Kyle leads me to the jeep; Ian has beat us there and is waiting with Jamie, Mel and Jared.

"Ready?" Jamie bounces as he grins at me.

"You're coming?" I smile at him.

"Yeah, it's just a short run, Jared talked Mel into letting me join. You coming too Kyle?" He frowns at the older man.


"What about Sunny."

"She's fine with Jeb and Lily." He shrugs and then holds open the back door of the jeep "Let's go ET. I've never seen the act."

"Right." I chuckle at him and climb into the jeep next to Ian and Kyle slides in next to me. Mel and Jamie sit together in the front while Jared drives us to the truck.

We split into two groups and for the next three days all I feel is tension between all six of us, well not Kyle, he rides in the jeep with Ian and I and he keeps telling me stories about him and Ian when they were young, making me laugh. Jamie is his normal self too but Mel, Jared and Ian all seem a bit worried.

"Is everything ok?" I whisper to Ian in a seemly unusual moment alone.

"Fine." He nods. "Home soon."

"Right." I smile at him as Jamie comes jogging over.

"Let's go." He grins at me.

"Yup." I grin and climb into the jeep after him.

When we get back everyone helps us unload and Sunny hurdles herself at Kyle in excitement, she had been very worried.

I smile at them and head to the baths, Mel follows and Lily meets us there.

"We moved our stuff back to our rooms while you were gone." Lily tells us as we sink into the heated water.

Mel nods and smiles at her, "Don't suppose you just moved Jamie right in with Aaron and Brandt."

Lily giggles and nods, "Took the liberty of arranging his things myself."

I frown in thought, would I be moving in with Ian? He'd been distant for more than a week and he wouldn't kiss me in this body. Maybe Kyle was wrong, maybe he didn't want me after all."

"Wanda?... Wanda?" Mel brings me out of my thoughts.

"Sorry, what?"

"I said we moved your things into Ian's old room."

"Old room?" I frowned at her.

"Yeah, well, he and Kyle used to share so we um, we put Sunny in there with your things."

"Right." I nod smiling at her, "Kyle hasn't finished their room."

"Right." Lily looked odd as she avoided my gaze.

"Wanda?" Mel asks gently.

"Yes Mel?"

"You do want to live with Ian still?"

"Of course." I look down at my hands playing with the surface of the water, "Does he not want to live with me anymore?"

"Of course he does." I nod not sure I believe her, humans lie so easily.

Sunny is practically wrapped around Kyle as he leads her into the kitchen for dinner; we are all tired and hungry from the trip.

"I won't go again. Ok?" He's telling her as they sit beside me. The seat Ian always has on my right is empty but he sits next to Mel and something in my chest feels a painful sting. I don't like the feeling.

I eat quietly as Kyle comforts Sunny, sneaking looks at Ian out of the corner of my eyes. When the food is finished we all decide its time to sleep but Sunny is adamant Kyle stays with her. When I reach my room they are curled on Sunny's bed together, mine is on the opposite wall and I don't know where Ian has gone. The next day I see he's moved into the little room Kyle was making bigger. He moves his things out so Kyle can work in the day.

Three days pass and I feel Ian is avoiding me. At meals he sits beside Melanie, Kyle and Sunny next to me and it's all I can do to eat so I don't speak and my stories don't start up again after the meal is done.



"When will you finish your and Sunny's room?"

He grins and winks at me, "Room will be all yours in another day."

I blush and roll my eyes, then look at my feet, "Do you think Ian will move back in?"

"Of course." He frowns, "Why?"

"He's… different."

"Blue balls does that to a man." He laughs. I frown at him and he just shakes his head laughing as he walks away, "Ask Mel!" He calls back to me.

I go and find Melanie, she's with Jared in their room but the door is open so I knock gently.

"Come in Wanda." Jared smiles at me.

"Um, I uh, had a question Mel."

"Sure." She waves me in.

I take a breath, knowing Kyle, as I was coming to, I wasn't entirely sure what answer his comment would provide but if something was wrong with Ian I had to know, "What's blue balls?"

Jared chokes and sputters behind me while Mel's mouth drops open, "Where did you hear that?" she finally asks.

"Kyle." I shrug.

"Of course." Jared grunts and his voice seems angry.

"Kyle told you he had blue balls or you gave him them?" Mel demanded.

"Neither." I frown at her in question, "He said Ian is different because of it."

Jared seems to choke but then he's laughing and shaking his head.

"Out." Mel orders him, "Now, or you'll be the one suffering."

When he's gone she turns back to me, "What do you mean Ian is different."

"At first it was kissing. He used to want to kiss me, even when it was so hard with you always angry about it. That made me think he used to touch me, or look at me too because that made you upset too. Now he doesn't do that. He was very… distant, on the raid and now he wont sit next to me or work with me, he used to always be near me."

"Can I ask you a question?" She asks softly. I nod still frowning at her, "How do you feel about Ian?" I can't help the smile as I think about him, forgetting for a moment all the worry and fear about him not wanting me anymore, "I love him."

"What about Kyle?"

"Kyle?" I frown at her, "he's ok, funny, in a way I don't always understand and he teases me, but not meanly, now that he isn't trying to kill me I like him."

"Does it bother you, him being with Sunny?"

I frown at her as I shake my head, "Sunny is young but this is her second life, she is older than your grandmother, I know she seems innocent and she is but he's not doing anything wrong. He'd never hurt her. Even if they did get together, it wouldn't be bad… it's not inappropriate."

Mel smiles at me and nods, "So you think they are good together?"

I nod, "She's good for him and he'll take care of her."

"It's not blue balls affecting Ian, its jealousy." I frown at her as I repeat the words in my head. I still don't know what the first is but I understand jealousy, I'd felt it through Melanie. I just didn't understand why he'd feel that way. "He thinks you and Kyle are falling for each other." She explains.

I can't help but snort and then laugh at her. After a moment she chuckles too, "I know." When the laughter stops her eyes are mixed with it and a small seriousness.


"Watching you with him over the trip, you do seem very close and then coming back, you seemed, upset, about Sunny being all over Kyle."

"Sunny and Kyle?" It's not really a question, I can comprehend what she's saying I just don't really understand, "Ian is distant because Kyle might love Sunny?"

"No because you might love Kyle."

"I love Ian." I remind her, a little confused.

"Yes," she chuckles, "I realize that, actually I knew it and don't know why those paranoid boys made me question it but Jared and Ian were very convincing."


"Yes Wanda?"

"Does Ian still love me?"

"Very much. Trust me, his love, its like mine and Jared's, it's forever."

"Will he move back in now that Sunny and Kyle have their own room?"

"Yeah but with this on top of whatever before, you better make with the kissing him already because one this wouldn't have happened and two he will be suffering blue balls."

"Mel?" I ask after she's done laughing.


"What is blue balls?" I ask again, making her laugh again. By the end of her explanation I am bright red and we are both laughing.

"How did you and Kyle even get be friends?" She asks after we stop laughing and my color returns to normal.

"I sort of, wandered in where he was working alone after our talk about Ian not kissing me and I remembered Sunny and Jodi and how your body still loved Jared and maybe it was because Ian's body loved you and not this body… not me." I whisper the last.

"No Wanda." Mel reaches over and hugs me, "Ian would love you in any body, he loves you."

I chuckle, "That's what Kyle said." I sigh, "Then he just seemed so different, so, distant." Mel hugged me again.

Jamie comes banging into the room announcing lunch and we both laugh at him fondly, letting him pull us to our feet.

As we leave her room Mel whispers some last advice, "Just kiss him Wanda."

"Kyle said that too." I whisper back making her laugh.

We get our lunch and Ian is already sitting, Jared beside him and Kyle and Sunny across. I hesitate a moment but go to sit next to him. "Ian." I smile shyly at him.

"Wanda." He gives me a small smile and continues to eat. Kyle is frowning at us both.

"OK there brother?" He speaks up.

"Fine." Ian shrugs.

"Anxious about getting your room back." Kyle is smirking and sends me a wink but Ian doesn't reply, he just gets up and takes his dishes to the sink.

I get up and follow him, "Ian?"

"Yes Wanda?" He looks back at me and I wonder how one goes about kissing a man, especially when he is so much taller, I'd need a little step to reach more than his jaw. I lick my lips, and know I am a coward, "Want some help?"

"Sure." He shrugs and turns to continue walking.

I watch him as he leads us to the east field and bends to pick up a weeding tool. I watch him for a minute before going to get my own and start working near him. Lily brings us water a while later and I realize Jared, Mel, Jamie and Brandt had also joined us. I thank Lily and sip the water before getting back to work. The tense silence between Ian and I had become more relaxed as we worked but I couldn't help but watch him as I tried to focus on my task. He did more than twice the work I did but no one seemed to notice, this body was still slower and weaker than Mel's had been. I was getting better but it would take time to build up my endurance and strength. I watched as Ian tidied up and went to put both our tools away.

I didn't think as I watched him crouch down to clean the tools. I walked over to him and touched his shoulder. Ian looked up at me a question in his eyes, before I could chicken out, I bent and kissed him lightly on the lips.

"Wanda?" He breathed my name.

"You don't kiss me anymore." I whisper back. At his confused look I give him a small smile, "I have a body I can finally use and only one mind, but you don't kiss me now."

Ian is standing, his look is intense and I don't know if its anger but I don't want him to walk away from me. My heart barely has a second to begin breaking before I am in his arms and his mouth has descended to meet mine. This kiss isn't like any he's given me before. It's like one I remember from Mel's memories with its heat and like the one Jared gave me when I lost Mel, full of desperation. I kiss him back, pressing my body closer to his. I hear him groan as he holds me tighter, moving away from my mouth so we can breathe, but only for a moment and then he's kissing me again.

A whistle pulls us apart, "Alright, alright, get a room." Kyle is laughing, "Actually that's why I came to find you. Me and Sunny moved into our very own room so you two get your room back. Just remember sound travels in this place." He calls the last over his shoulder as he turns and leaves.

I giggle and turn back to Ian "You know, when he's not murderous your brother isn't so bad."

Ian laughs and shakes his head, "I'm still the better brother."

"Of course you are." I smile at him. "Ready to get cleaned up and eat?"

"Lead the way." He gestures to the direction Kyle went so I start walking to our room to get fresh cloths for my bath. He moves the door when we get there and inside his bed has been moved back, it's pressed against mine like Jared and Mel's instead of opposite like before. I hurry to my things and grab clothes before waiting for him to get his, staring at my feet by the door.

As we make out way to the bath he starts to speak, stops and starts again, "If you want me to move the beds I can."

"Why?" I whisper, "Weren't you comfortable in the bed during the rains?"

"Of course." He assures me, "I just, want you to be comfortable."

"I am." I tell him.

We are both quiet as we take our turns in the bath and bring our wet cloths back to our room before meeting the others for dinner.

"Wasn't sure we'd see you." Kyle wiggles his eyes brows at us as we sit making the others laugh.

I wasn't sure why I felt embarrassed but I did so I fling a grain of corn at him, "Shut up."

"Hey it's not my fault little brother can't use it, you probably broke it holding out so long. "

I wasn't sure what he meant but Jared and Mel were biting back a laugh, Ian was glaring at him, and Jeb was rolling his eyes at us, Jamie seemed a little disturbed and Sunny was just as confused as I was.

"Ian?" I asked softly.

"Ignore him." Ian bit out.

I turned to look at Mel, who finally let out her laugh, shaking her head, "Nothing is broken."

"Bluish maybe." Jared snorted making Kyle laugh a booming full laugh that caught everyone's attention.

"What's this all about?" Lily asked grinning as she sat with us.

"Silliness." Jeb rolled his eyes. "I don't want to hear about it. Jamie, come on and help me with the dishes."

Jamie sighed but took his plate and got up, snatching a last bite of corn bread from my plate and sending me a wink and smile. I smiled back and watched him leave, still confused. Lily took his vacated seat, "So?" She pressed.

"Wanda broke down and kissed my idiot brother."

"About time." She smiled at us. "I thought it'd be Ian though."

"I figured he'd hit Kyle first." Jared shrugged making Kyle laugh.

"Me too." He admitted.


Kyle winked at me, "O'Shea's are jealous men ET, besides, he knows I'm the better looking one."

I frown at him, their looks so similar, "Not really, no." I tell him honestly shaking my head, "You look very similar and the broken nose doesn't look bad but his is so very straight and you have a very nice laugh but his smile is warmer and his eyes are bluer, sapphires, yours are like… dark water."

Kyle shakes his head as they all chuckle.

"Thank you." Ian whispers, kissing my temple.

I smile shyly at him, "Did you not know I thought you beautiful?"

He smiles at me, his blue eyes shining, but I see doubt in their debts, "You are beautiful my Wanderer."

"Why would you be jealous?" I question him after the rest of Kyle's words catch up to me.

"He makes you laugh." Ian admitted.

"He's goofy." I tell him. "When he's not trying to murder me." I tack on.

"I haven't done that in a long time." Kyle protests but there is a laugh in his voice.

"Does that mean you are about do for another attempt?" I had learned sarcasm and teasing from him in the last few weeks.

Kyle barks out a laugh, "Nah, promised I wouldn't after you went and saved my sorry ass but if you miss the thrill I could convince Brandt."

I giggled and shook my head, "I'm good thanks."

"Whatever you say ET." He winks at me and smiles down at a confused Sunny, "Come on Sunny, let's get settled in our room for the night, we can play cards."

"Coming Wanderer?" Sunny asks as they get up.

I shake my head and smile at her but Kyle cuts me off, "We have our own room now Sunny." He frowns, "You don't have to stay with me though."

"I want to." Sunny rushes out, eyes wide as she grabs his arm. "Wanderer isn't sleeping with us now though?"

I shake my head but again it's Kyle to speak, "She's sleeping with Ian now."

"Ok." Sunny smiles lovingly at him, "We can all still play sometimes though?"

"Sure." Kyle grinned leading her away, "Just not tonight, maybe not for a couple nights." He throws a wink at me over his shoulder, "If it works, it might need a break by then."

I frown and turn to Mel again, "What works?"

"He's being crude is all." Lily shrugs. "Glad you two kissed and made up."

"Made up?" I was confused again.

"She just means she's happy you and Ian are happy." Mel supplied.

"Of course." Lily smiled at me as well.

"Come on, let's go to bed." Jared stood up and then leaned down to whisper something to Mel that made her smile at him in a way I only knew from her memories.

"I'm tired too." I tell Ian, instantly he's up and helping me to my feet. I get into bed first and then curl close to Ian. He sprawls adorably once he's sleeping but I know from the rains, he liked to hold me until he fell asleep.

The days begin to pass quickly again, Ian was always working near me, always touching me, kissing me gently at times and sometimes when we were alone, the passion from the other day returned. He'd pull back after a minute and look almost, tortured but the look would pass and he'd lead me away or he'd pull me into his arms and turn me so his body wrapped around mine to sleep.

I remembered from Melanie's memories there was more but Ian held back from anything more than kissing me and holding me close, I wondered if it was the young age of my host that made him hesitate. I had known I didn't want that from the moment I woke up, which is why I'd added a year to her age but it seemed it had made little difference. I wanted more but wasn't sure how to tell Ian. I wasn't shy about touching him anymore, or leaning up on my toes for a kiss, curling against him in bed sleeping in only his shirt since it was too hot for much else. Every time he pulled away from me with that look in his eyes, I became to self-conscious to ask him, to tell him I wanted him to touch me the way Jared touched Mel in her memory. Often I had the dreams she'd shared with me only they were replaced by Ian and I. He pulled away quicker now and never kissed me very deeply in our room, he just lightly touched my lips, turned me into his arms and held me until our heart beats and breathing evened and we slept. I'd be worried it was me but he seemed short with the others so I went to Mel when Jared was with her.

"Is something wrong with Ian?" I demand without proper greeting.

"No." Mel frowned at me.

"He's very short with Brandt and Aaron, Kyle too and I saw him shove you this afternoon Jared."

"We were just messing around Wanda." Jared smiled at me.

"Please tell me." I bit back tears of frustration.

"Jared, out." Mel ordered.

Jared rolled his eyes but shrugged and left the room, "Be back after I use the toilet."

"It's nothing Wanda." Mel hugged me, "Ian is fine. He's just, being careful with you."

"He's short-tempered because of me?" Hadn't I just convinced myself it wasn't because of me? He didn't want the heat between us to burn?

"He's a bit short tempered because well, let's talk about you instead."


"How are things with you and Ian?"

I shrug, "Good."

She gives me the look that says she knows I'm not being honest. "They are, it's just, I want, well I don't know how," I sigh, "I want to be with Ian but I think he thinks my host is to young."

"That's one theory." Mel nodded, "I broke Jared of that pretty quick though, you can break Ian of it too and then his mood will be much better."

"Is this part of the blue thing?" I frown at her.

Mel laughs and nods her head, "Yeah, kinda."


Jared knocked, "Can I come back yet?" I giggled and Mel rolled her eyes.

"Yes of course, what took you so long?" she teased.

I rolled my eyes and left knowing where that look would take them and wishing I could explain to Ian I wanted to be with him completely, the way they were.

I go to my room and lie in bed waiting for Ian. When I hear his voice with Kyle's I turn around and pretend to sleep, listening.

"Shut up Kyle."

"Relax dude. It's not like I'm going to walk in your room and tell ET you're so hot for her that holding back has your balls gone from blue to black, I mean if you want them to fall off that's your problem hell the way she looks at you she might self-combust before that anyways."

"She doesn't, it's not." Ian sighs.

"That girl is in love with you Ian, if sex is off the table because she's not into it, fine but the way she looks at you, it isn't and man, you have to do something. You are so bent out of shape the last couple days you're turning into me."

"She sleeps in my tee shirt, the old on with the tear at the bottom. Nothing else." Ian groans.

"Talk to her or hell push for a little more and if she says no, then back off, what the fuck is the point of just pushing her away?"

"I'm not."

"Right, like you weren't jealous she asked me, your twin brother about you, despite that I tried to kill her and she was nervous to be alone with me."

"That was different."

"You not kissing her and making her feel unwanted was the same as this."

"I didn't… I never meant."

"No, but she doesn't understand, memories from Mel and nine other lives aside, she's innocent. She isn't human, she doesn't exactly understand our courtship or codes of ethics and honor or all that. Just fucking tell her she's beautiful and you want to fuck her silly and see what she says. Or make a damn move and see if she reciprocates more than kissing, which by the way doesn't lead me to believe she wants less human interaction with you."

"I just don't want to push her. I don't want to ruin it."

"Then be miserable, make us miserable and for all we know, her miserable because I've heard Mel and Jared at it and that girl didn't lose her virginity after coming back from the dead. God, Mel and Wanda only knows what Wanda knows about sex and love or what she wants from you for that matter."


"Goodnight brother."

"Yeah, night Kyle."

Ian came in the room and I heard him moving around undressing, waiting until he slipped into the bed before turning to him and whispering, "Do you not like me sleeping in this shirt?"

"Shit." Ian cursed and ran a hand through his hair, "I didn't mean for you to hear that. Any of that." He groans, "Oh god you heard all of that."

I sat up and shrug looking down at my lap, "I can take it off." I offer, pulling at the torn hem.

Ian groaned, "Please god no."


"I'm sorry Wanda, listen, it's ok, just forget you heard any of that ok. I'm a patient man and you are still very young. We can talk about it when you're older, when you understand more about human relationships."

"I'm not a child Ian." I found myself repeating Jamie when he wanted something Mel and I thought he was to young to talk about or see. Of course it was very much true for me if not my hosts body in a way it wasn't for Jamie.

"I know that Wanda." He cursed, "Fuck if I don't wish I could think of you as one."


"I just, hell Wanda, I mean do you understand love, for humans? How much of what's between Jared and Mel do you know from her mind?"

"Mel and I have no secrets Ian." I whisper, "You aren't afraid I want Jared still are you?"

"Shit." Ian ran a hand through his hair again, "I wasn't."

"There is the smallest part of me that loves him still, but its like I love Jamie, well no, not that much, more like I love Mel. I don't love him the way I love you." I slide closer to him, "I love you with all of me, my whole soul… now that I have one of my own, my body could love you too." I whisper, "It wants to, I want to, love you fully."

"Wanda." He sighs and pulls me into his arms, "Do you even understand what you're saying?"

"I want you touch me." I tell him, suddenly confident as I moved closer into his arms, "When you kiss me, I don't want you to stop. I want the fire." I breathe into him and then he's kissing me. I kiss him back, pressing into his body and I feel his arms around me, pulling me tighter to him and then rolling so he's over me, his weight pushing me into the mattress. It's an instinct in my human body to wrap my legs around his waist. I moan as we rock into each other, our hips finding a matching rhythm as he kisses me. I can feel him pressing against me, that bulge in his boxers I'd felt a few times before without ever getting to see. I knew what it looked like, what Jared looked like from Mel's memory but I wanted to see Ian, I wanted to touch him and have him touch me.

"WANDA! IAN!" Jamie comes crashing into our room and Ian curses with a groan.

"What?" He snaps. I bite back my own irritation at the interruption, I wanted Ian so badly I burned from the inside out with it, but this was Jamie.

"What's wrong?" I ask him sitting up, Ian having flopped down onto the mattress beside me.

Jamie hesitated, blushing a little, "Um sorry, it's just uh, well it's important, I should have knocked."

"What is it?" Ian sat up as concern washed through me.

"Jeb went with Aaron and Brandt to check the jeep and spy on some people they saw, worried they might be Seekers looking for Lacey again or something."

"Are they ok?" My heart was pounding in my ears.

"People Wanda." Jamie grinned, "It was people, human people!"

Ian jumped up and pulled on pants, I hurried to get dressed in my skirt and tank as well, hurrying after Jamie with Ian at my heals.

I stood back a little as Ian crowed with the others to be introduced. My eyes skimmed over them and landed on one with glasses on in the back. I knew he stared at me as well.

"Ain't no seekers to hide your eyes from here." Maggie spoke up to the one I stared at.

"Well now, don't get all worked up, we take offence to it being as he's family." The one near Jeb spoke up.

"It's ok Ryan." The soul spoke up. "Looks like they have a friend of their own, or are you a prisoner?" He asked me.

I moved forward, "A friend. They call me Wanda."

He removes his sunglasses, the lamp light reflecting in his eyes as they did mine. "My name is Burns Living Flowers, they call me Burns."

"I've had many names, on this planet they named me Wanderer, I was also Lives in the Stars."

"I have heard of you." He tilts his head, "The stories I heard called you One of All Worlds and No World."

I nod, "I heard myself named so once, but I am of this world now."

"Seems there are a few of us going native." He chuckles as Sunny moves into the room, her eyes glinting in both our peripherals."

"Gone native?" I question and then smile, "Yes, I believe we have."

"Well now then." His friend smiled between the three of us and looked back at Jeb, "We've come across a couple other groups but this is the first that's had anyone like Burns, and here we thought he was an anomaly."

"There are other groups?" Jamie asked excitedly.

"Three, all smaller than us and I think from the number in here, we are smaller than you."

"We've been freeing who we can." Candy smiled at him.

"Freeing?" they all looked surprised.

"Sending the souls to other planets." I tell Burns.

He nods and looks amazed, "I heard the story of you doing that."

"You can do that?" One of his group hisses at him, "Get them out without killing us?"

He shakes his head, eyes not leaving mine, "I can't." He nodded to me, "She can."

"You can't?" I frown at him.

"This is my second world." He tells me, "I have a lot to learn and only The Origin or Healers truly know."

I nod, "I can show you but only with the same promise I have here."

"What?" The man who'd been doing the introductions asked.

"The souls cannot be harmed. They are removed, carefully placed into Cryotanks and sent to distant planets." I met his eyes and then turned back to Burns, "There has been enough death, enough murder."

"It's bullshit." One of their people hissed. "Burns is an anomaly, most of them are murdering parasites!"

"Wanda is right, there has been enough killing." Jeb spoke up, "This is my place, our group and her knowledge will only be shared to who we can trust to meet Wanda's stipulation."

"I understand." The man nodded.

Things settled down but everyone seemed to move into small groups and the humans mingled. I moved to the side with Burns, Sunny stayed attached to Kyle.

When I was to tired to keep my eyes open, Burns encouraged me to go sleep so I snuck away. I was asleep before Ian returned. Everyone slept in the next day and I was happy to wake and find Ian sprawled out next to me. I smiled and kissed his bare chest.

He moaned, "Don't start what we can't finish." He grumbled.

I giggled, "Why can't we."

In a flash he'd pulled me up his body for a searing kiss when he pulled away we were both panting, "We still have company, a lot of it and chores and Jamie." He reminded me even as I heard a knock on the door.

"Come in Jamie." I called sitting up.

"It's me." Mel slipped into the room. "Sorry Ian but Jared and Jeb want you."

"Sure." He got up and pulled on pants and a shirt quickly before placing a last kiss on my lips, "Later my Wanderer."

"Later." I whispered back, hoping we could continue last night.

Mel fanned her face and dropped onto the bed, "Jamie told me he interrupted last night, please tell me it was the end and not the beginning."

"Beginning." I groaned.

Mel laughed and patted my back, "Sorry sis."

I wasn't able to be alone with Ian for a while after that because no sooner did I enter the kitchen for breakfast and I was being handed a breakfast sandwich and led to the jeep. There weren't enough supplies with so many here. Jared and Mel, Burns and two of his, Laura and Derek would be coming along.

We spent five days filling up the truck and jeep to over full before we got back. Everyone helped to unload but I didn't understand the new tension in the air. I ignored it as I hugged Ian.

"We're back."

"Safe." He sighed. "I hate it when you go without me."

"Me too." I admitted.

He led me to the kitchen for food but the tension followed us. It wasn't until I went for a change of clothes to bathe that I went to our room and found the beds separate.


He shrugged, "Not enough room, not enough beds, you don't mind snuggling up in one do you." He whispered pulling my body back against his.

"No." I panted feeling my whole body shiver as liquid heat flooded my veins and pooled in my gut.

"Go shower, Wanda. Before I start something we can't finish and have to kill someone over it." He kissed my neck and pushed me a little away.

I nodded numbly, a little disappointed but he leaned down and kissed me, "Soon Wanda, I promise that."

I reached on tip toes and kissed him before hurrying away, it was a promise that couldn't be soon enough.

When I finished everyone was in the game room and I went over to sit with Ian.

"What's up?" I asked him leaning my head against his shoulder as Burns made his way over to us.

"Sleeping arrangements" the soul told me dropping to the floor at my feet.

"Aren't all of your people sleeping in here?" I asked him turning to look at Ian.

"Not enough beds." He shrugged, "As many of us can are doubling up, all the sleeping rolls and beds are used, even before the six of you got back."

"We brought a few sleeping rolls back with us but filled the truck with food, not beds."

"We'll make do." A man I didn't know dropped next to Burns, their knees touching. "Ok Flower Power?"

"How many times do I have to tell you I ate the flowers, anyway Wanderer was one once, that tease suits her better."

"You got energy from flowers, that my man is flower power."

Burns shook his head and chuckled the teasing seemed affectionate and I smiled when Burns turned to look at me, "This is Adam, he's a nut case and while my host has memories of a woman named Ashley, I happen to love him."

"This is Ian." I tell him with a smile.

Burns nods to Ian, "Problem with me or me and Adam?" Ian shakes his head and Burns smiles, "Good because I might not be a Seeker but I'm not as sweet as this one." He nods to me.

"Sweet." Adam snorts, "You were a pain in my ass from the moment we met."

"Actually that took about a month but I was a thorn in your people's sides that's for sure."

"How did you end up with this group?" Kyle asked from behind me.

"Ran into them a while back." Burns shrugged.

"He'd saved a couple of children from some Seekers and was travelling with them and a couple other humans, one was the children's parent." I tell Kyle, having heard the story in the jeep.

"That was Tammy's kids. She wouldn't let the rest of this lot get at me when they found us. Told them they could just fuck right along and be on their way, not to blame us if they got caught but she and her kids were sticking with me. Our other two companions backed her up and grudgingly the others let me help get them away from the Seekers searching the area. Next thing we're all one happy family and I'm bunking with Adam here." Burns finished before turning his attention back to me. "You can bunk in wherever Adam and I are put if you like."

"I sleep with Ian." I smile at him, "Thank you though."

"Actually even couples will have to double up in rooms for a bit." Adam smiles at me, "If you and Ian aren't already sharing, I am happy to move out of the room I am in, those girls might not be homophobic but they sure as shit are anti-Burns and I can't handle that crap." He nods at Burns, "Fucker will put up with it, no complaints even but me, hell no. He might be a wispy feathery blue thing but he's my wispy feathery blue thing and the body he's in, well, Paul is long gone may he rest in peace because as far as I'm concerned the body is Burns now too."

I nod in agreement, "My new host was long gone when they removed Pet from her, that's why they put me in."

"I heard you were in Melanie before. I can't imagine two people in one body."

"It was, crowded." I agreed lightly.

Jamie came bounding over to us with Mel and Jared behind him and a moment after they were settled near us Jeb came in with their leader Max.

"So." Jeb called out, "This little meeting is about a little game of musical beds we need to play, again. We've six more people than the last five days, four more bed rolls but no more rooms and we didn't have enough before you lot came visiting. Happy to have you of course but, we're all going to get cozy. Many rolls and all the hospital cots have been moved in here as you lot may have noticed sitting on them and all. Everyone will make as much room as we can make in our rooms and real beds for you. Thanks to Burns and our Wanda there is plenty of good food to go around but chores are part of life here and while you are my guests please be respectful of our home and contribute what you can."

"Me and Sunny ain't got room for two more, we've taken in Jamie." Kyle shrugged at me and Ian once Jeb was done. "Besides I don't know if I trust this lot with her.

"You and Ian can come into our room." Mel smiled at me.

"Maggie moved a cot in with Sharon and Doc and Paige and I have been sharing a bed in with Candy and Lacey but I swear I am about to strangle that ex-Seeker, I mean you really couldn't have just let her die and taught us the secret with someone else?" Lily rolled her eyes at me. Lacey had not endeared herself to any of my friends.

"You can move in with Jared and Mel." I smiled at her, "I don't mind sharing with Burns and Adam." I included to two men, who seemed slightly uncomfortable on the outside our little group.

Mel nodded in agreement, "Yeah, you don't want them in with Brandt."

"Aaron's the homophob." Jared snorted.

"Brandt would have been only to happy to kill Wanda, he might not look at her sideways anymore but I hardly think Burns falls into the to innocent looking to be a dangerous soul as Wanda in this body. Only Maggie and Sharon aren't affected by her sweet face and angelic halo of blond hair." Mel contradicted.

"So it would suck for them on both counts." Kyle shrugged, not defending his friends. "Lucky its sorted and the Soul and his man are sleeping with Ian and Wanda and that is a mental picture I did not need about my little brother." Kyle made a face and Ian shoved him. The others were laughing, even Burns but I was lost.

"It's ok Wanda." Jamie patted my knee, "Kyle's just being Kyle."

Laura and Derek joined us as well then, "Everyone already roomed up?" Laura asked moving to sit next to Adam and dropping her head on his shoulder. "Sorry sis." Adam leans his head on top of hers.

This seemed to indicate to the others to move and mingle and a few others came over to join us, including two young women I didn't know.

"Ian." A pretty tall, caramel skinned woman smiled at him.

"Maria." He nodded at them both, "Claire."

"We've just been talking about where to sleep." Claire fluttered her lashes at Aaron as he walked over.

"Welcome to my bed honey." He grinned at her.

"Maybe we can share a room with Maria and Ian?" She asked taking his arm.

"Wonderful idea." Maria didn't take her eyes off Ian, "Isn't it Ian? I mean, I don't mind, sharing a little bed with you."

"I sleep with Ian." I told her, not liking the twisting angry feeling in my gut. I'd felt it through Melanie but not quite like this, jealousy.

She turned to me and narrowed her eyes, "Surely you'll be more comfortable with your own kind, Jeb must have a room for you and Sunny that Burns can share."

"Sunny sleeps with me, just like she has since before you got here and Wanda sleeps with my brother."

"We might have to give up our privacy while you lot are here but musical beds doesn't mean musical partners." Mel agreed.

"Ian was fine sharing a room with me while she was gone, maybe he likes the break from babysitting a soul."

The burning in my gut got worse, I got up and walked away, trying to sort through the powerful and foreign emotions.

Ian wasn't far behind. "Adam and I bunked in with them, I never shared her bed." I nod and keep walking to our room but he grabs my arm, "Wanda?"

I hate that tears sting my eyes, "I don't understand this feeling Ian, I don't like it though."

"I'm sorry, baby, please." He pulls me into his arms and I sigh in his embrace, when he pulls back its to lean down and kiss me, passion quickly taking over the sweetness of it. Hooting broke us apart as I hid in his chest, peaking out at the mix of people that had found us. Maria was glaring at me and I felt a look I'd seen on Kyle twist my face, it was like his smirk but instead of teasing I knew it was angry. I didn't like the feeling that filled me in that moment anymore than I had the jealous hurt. This feeling was dark and vindictive, I was glad she'd seen him kiss me.

I pull back from Ian and meet his eyes, "I love you." I tell him, mostly I need to tell him, to remind him that while I was still new to the emotions of humans and their ways, I did love and want him but partly I want her to hear him say it back and I think it is coming out of that dark emotion. I don't want to hurt her, not physically but I want her to understand without doubt, Ian is mine.

"I love you too." He tells me, leaning down to kiss me gently again.

"Alright, alright, get a room." Kyle taunts, moving past us, "the kid is here."

I pull away from Ian and hug Jamie, "Goodnight Jamie."

"Good night Wanda." He hugs me back before following Kyle, who still had Sunny tucked under his arm.

I turn to Mel and Jared, "Sleep well."

"You too sister." Mel smiles at me.

"Goodnight Wanda." Jared nods.

I nod from Ian to Burns and he nods back so I turn and disappear down the tunnel to our room, I know he'll lead them the way once they've gotten all of their things. It's not long before they are coming in though.

"I was all ready to move once I knew Burns was back." Adam said by way of explanation. I smiled at him as the three men got ready to sleep and Ian slipping into bed beside me, holding me tight in the small space. It was cramped and Ian liked to sprawl but I was small and curled against his side. I wasn't sure how the others were managing but when I woke up I saw Adam wrapped around Burns who just smiled at me and closed his eyes, breathing his partner in and waiting for him to wake.

Our guests stayed a month and Maria did not endear herself to me. If I wasn't with Ian she found a way to be close to him, luckily I was usually with him but even when I was there she would touch him, casually, but more than needed and I didn't like it. Ian didn't respond to her at all and that helped that awful feeling of jealousy in my gut, it also helped that Ian touched me, mostly just casually, all the time. A hand on my back, around my waist, holding my hand, brushing hair from my face, then there were the little kisses, when we were working and stopped for water or other small passing moments but also in a dark corner in an abandoned corridor, he'd kiss me deeply, often leaving us both panting, our hips moving against each other while he pinned me to a wall.

I was sorry to see our new friends leave but so happy when I went back to our room to find only our own belongings in it and our two beds pushed together. As soon as he walked into the room I attacked Ian, jumping into his arms and wrapping my legs around his waist as I kissed him. A few steps and he was sitting me on the bed, bending me forward as he pulled off my clothes while I ripped at his tee shirt to claw it off. He helped me by kicking off his pants once my own clothes were scattered around the room.

"Are you sure?" He paused at his boxes and I practically screamed.

"Yes!" I nod frantically, "Please, for the love of anything you find holy, please Ian, touch me." I demanded.

Ian chuckled and shed his boxers; I licked my lips, my mouth dry as I gazed at him fully for the first time. He was beautiful, so beautiful and mine.

I reached for him then and he moved over me, kissing me as his hands roamed my body, igniting shivers even as I burned from the inside.

"Ian?" I recognized that high, snotty voice even before she appeared in the doorway.

"Fuck off." He growled before kissing me again. I giggled as I saw her ashen face staring at us. She cleared her throat and he groaned, "Someone had better be fucking dying." He murmured against my skin before turning to her, pulling a sheet to cover us, "What?"

I, um, Claire, we…" She stumbled.

"What do you want Maria." His voice was gentle but impatient.

"Aaron asked Claire to stay. We, both of us will be staying."

"Great." His voice is Kyle's in that moment, sarcastic and angry.

"Jeb, he um, asked me to get you and Kyle, the soul too."

Ian groaned, "Fuck. Fine. We'll be right there." He looked back at me and rolled his eyes, "Someone had better be fucking dead or dying or I might kill the next person to step foot through our door."

I giggled at him and pushed his shoulder, "Come on before Jeb sends Jamie."

Ian rolls his eyes and climbs off me, pulling on his clothes I am held captive watching him, "Get dressed Wanda or Jeb, Jamie and the whole of the fucking caves can walk in here and I won't stop making love to you until you scream my name so loud the Seekers in Phoenix hear you."

I lick my lips and swallow not sure why the threat made the heat in me grow even as I did as he said. As we left he pulled me into his body for another searing kiss.

"I love you."

"Love you too." I sigh.

Jeb is in the kitchen with a few of the others. Maria still looks a little pale but sends me an angry little glare anyways.

"Jeb." Ian nods at him shortly. "What is it?"

Jeb frowns at us and Kyle walks in with a laugh, "Damn brother I didn't think we'd see you two until tomorrow at the earliest unless you snuck out for sustenance in a few hours, stocking up now so you don't have to later?"

Ian glared at his brother and turned to Jeb again, "What do you want Jeb?"

"Want?" Jeb frowns at him again.

"I must have misunderstood." Maria raises her hands in supplication with an innocent look at Ian's murderous gaze. She turned to Jeb, "You said there was a meeting in the kitchen."

"He said we were meeting in the kitchen." Kyle contradicted her with a dark look.

"I'm sorry." She smiles slightly, looking repentant and I want to hit her, the thought shocks me and I move closer to Ian trying to steady the emotional wave flowing through me.

Ian growls and glares at the room, "Unless someone is dying, do not fucking knock on our door." He growls grabbing me by the hand and spinning us to the door, after two steps he changes direction and moves further into the kitchen. All eyes are on us, the room silent until Kyle bursts out laughing as Ian grabs some bread, a couple apples and tosses it in a bag with some other things before taking my hand again and leading me from the room.

Back in our room he slams the door shut and paces a few steps.


"I'm sorry Wanda."

"What's wrong?"

"I need a minute to calm down." He practically growls at me.

"Ian?" I run my fingers over his shoulder and his eyes soften on me.

"It's alright my Wanderer." He pulls me gently into his arms and holds me while I listen to his heart beat, strong and fast. I reach up on my toes to kiss his jaw and feel him relax as he leans into me hugging me tightly for a few minutes just breathing me in before pulling back to kiss me gently.

"Better now?" I ask between kisses.

He smiles as he nods but the smile is quickly replaced by a grimace. "Ignore it." He tells me glaring at the door as if the person behind it would disappear by sheer will alone.

The knocking continues, "Wanda?"

"Go away." Ian growls.

I frown at him, fighting a smile, "Come in Jamie."

"Hey." He looks from me to the dark look on Ian's face. "Sorry, was I interrupting?"

"Not really." I shake my head at him with a smile.

"Yes." Ian grumbles.

"Sorry." Jamie repeats. "Mel and Jared are… busy, but a bunch of the rest of us were going to play soccer."

"We're busy too." Ian tells him.

Jamie blushes, "Right, yeah, ok. Sorry. Kyle said I could ask you."

"I'll kill him." Ian grumbles darkly.

I giggle at him, "Thank you Jamie but Ian and I are a bit tired, and clearly he needs a nap to remember he isn't Kyle."

"Yeah." Jamie grins at me, "I think he needs more than a nap." I gap at him even as he blushes at me, "What, I'm not a kid." He tells me ducking out of the room.

I giggle as the door slams shut behide him and go to Ian, hugging him from behind, "You can use violence against the next person to interrupt." I tell him kissing his back, between his shoulder blades.

Ian sighs and turns so he can hug me to his chest, "Let's have something to eat." He suggests kissing me gently before moving to the bag and digging us out bread and an apple to share.

I sink into his lap sitting cross-legged and tear a piece of bread off and feed it to him. He holds the apple to my lips, the fruit is crisp, cool and delicious. I lick the juice dripping down his fingers and he groans.

We finish the apple and half the bread before he tosses the core and turns me in his lap. The kiss is a slow burn and I sink into him, his hands skim my body dancing over each curve as he slowly peels my clothes off, lifting me and carrying me to our bed before kicking off his pants. I'm exploring his skin with my finger tips and then my lips and tongue, writhing beneath him, finally he settles over me and I can feel him pressing at the center of all the liquid heat. He groans and looks at the door. I frown as I look at it too; I hadn't heard a knock and at this point the cave could be collapsing I wouldn't want Ian to stop.


He kisses me again and meets my eyes? He seems to be looking for something in their depths but whatever it is he seems to see it as he leans down to kiss me and slowly presses forward. It burns a little as I stretch around him but he is so gentle my body is almost shaking with need. When he stops I groan, "Ian please." I can't believe the breathy quality of the whine I let out.

"I love you so much." He whispers in my ear. I mean to tell him the same but as I open my mouth his is covering mine and his hips push forward. It hurts. A lot. One sharp pain and Ian is holding so still, his mouth having caught my cry is now kissing my neck as he whispers over and over, "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry, it's done, the pain will go away, I promise, it's only this once."

I know from Mel's memory the first time hurts and I knew from Pet's that this body was a virgin but I'd forgotten that part. Ian had been so gentle, it stung and there was that one moment of real pain but even now it was fading away and I rocked my hips against his to see if the pain was really gone, it felt good again, that almost pain of the burning stretching was still there but it was over shadowed by the liquid heat still coursing through my veins, the raw need in my gut, my body wanted him to move, to press into me, to move. I rocked my hips again and Ian groaned. Afraid I'd hurt him I stilled, "Ian?"

"So, so tight." He kissed my neck again, "Are you sure you're ok for me to move?"

"Please." I practically cry.

Ian kisses me again and pulls out a little before pushing forward again, further this time until his hips are flush against mine. I felt so full, but so complete. He's only still a moment this time before his hips move in a rhythm that mine seem to instinctively find the match too. The heat is growing hotter and the needy feeling in my gut was becoming something twisted and tense. Ian's hips are losing their steady rhythm, moving faster.

"Wanda." My name is a broken cry in a whisper as his hips push deep into me and I feel something warm and wet pulse inside of me. It makes the twisting tense thing in my stomach snap and I cry out his name as my body clutches him to me harder and shakes.

After the shivers stop Ian rolls, holding me to his chest so I am sprawled over him and I sigh, kissing over his heart, "I love you Ian."

"Love you too my Wanderer." I drift to sleep in his arms..

My body is sore when I wake up but it feels good. Each ache reminds me of Ian deep inside me, of his voice crying my name, of the heat building into something so tight inside me until it snaps and I'm quivering in the most amazing feelings, not just the physical ones but its like all the humans ability to feel, physically and mentally and emotionally are all part of it, come together to affirm that Ian was mine and I was his, interspecies or not, we fit perfectly, in every way.

Ian is gentle with me, he feeds me more and holds me close, my body needs more time to heal he tells me. It's late when he leads me through the dark deserted tunnels to the baths, he comes in with me and helps me wash, not even the stinging soap eases the desire I feel for him as it grows. Back in our room he holds me close again, like I am the most precious thing and I know this is how he held me as a soul and I know I must have felt as safe, loved and happy then as I do right now.

The next time I woke up Ian made love to me again, there was no pain this time, only that amazing pleasure. The only knock on our door was Mel, who slid a tray in and shut the door again. Ian and I made love and talked through the day and next night. It was in the morning Ian stopped me from leaving our room for breakfast.


"Marry me?" I frown at him, searching Melanie's hazy left over memories for marriage.

Ian sighs, I know its not like it was, it won't be legal or anything but it will be real Wanderer and I love you forever."

"Of course Ian." I lean up on my toes and kiss his jaw; I'd ask Mel about marriage later.

I was glad when she explained that I'd said yes. Ian would be my partner, my true partner forever. I wasn't a wanderer anymore, a woman of all worlds but no worlds. I was an O'Shea and I was a woman of Earth.