[They tell me I have to get out of bed]
[They tell me I have to keep up my strength]
[I've got to eat something]
[I'm hoping that the taste will kill me]
[I have agonized to find a different way]

Getting up is a futile effort. My head spins as I swing my feet to touch the warm floor, and it doesn't stop until I am up completely. I don't remember when I ate last, I believe it was yesterday, but I don't really recall it. The days go by in a haze since I've arrived back on Moya. My quarters are familiar but alien to me; after sharing a bed with someone else for a monen or two it's not easy to go back to being alone. He promised me he'd never leave me, then he left. Why couldn't he take me with him? On Valldon, I tried to put up the walls I had so carefully constructed over time to keep me from this kind of pain. After Velorek, I knew that heartbreak was more painful than a phaser blast to the chest, and decided to protect myself. John completely disintegrated those walls over the cycles, making me totally vulnerable. Frell, he promised he'd never leave me!

[And there is no soothing for the boiling of my skin]
[There is no comfort here]
[So what if I'm standing here?]
[I still hurt from my hair to my feet]
[I know this is nothing now but once it was everything]

I finally compose myself enough to leave my quarters, after first peering up and down the corridor. I can't bear to face Crichton today, especially after the night I've had. I can't sleep, I can't relax, and every night I just lay in bed, unable to stop the tears from running down my face. My chest is constricted and it's hard to breathe. If I can avoid seeing him, I can make it through the day. Unfortunately around here, it's hard to actually avoid anyone; there's always something going on that requires us to be in the same room....repairs, problems, battles.....it never ends.
I make it to the maintenance bay, where my recently acquired Prowler sits, awaiting an overhaul. I could have afforded one in better shape, but I'm glad I got this one....it's banged up, pretty frelled, but at least I have something to keep me occupied. I think I'm going to see if Pilot can find me a Sebacean colony to live in. I can't stay here.... it's way too ugly for me.

[They tell me I have to get up and dressed]
[They tell me I have to start getting out]
[I've got to keep busy]
[Maybe exertion will do me in]
[I have been defiled a thousand different ways]

Oh no, whose voice is that. Frell, Crais.... coming to see me? He actually looks as if he's worried about me. I think I frightened him, down on Valldon; he didn't think the hard, scarred ex-Peacekeeper solder could crack the way I did. Frell, I tried to force myself on him. He may still feel guilty for killing Xhalax...either way, he's definitely brave for coming here.
"Hello, Officer Sun. I trust you are well."
He trusts nothing, which could be why he's using these nonexistent ranks. He continues to believe that I'll answer to him as an Officer to a Captain. Think again, Crais. He stands there, looking at me. He needs to get to the point, before I scream. I give him no chance to talk. "Crais, everything is fine. No reason to worry. I'd rather be alone."
That seems to be enough for him. He won't push it any further, for fear I'll turn my anger and pain on him. He finally leaves, after a few more microts of standing with his hands clasped behind his back.
Now that he's out of the room, I can stop being so tough. I sit on the floor and begin to daydream of the time John and I were doing some repairs on Talyn, after the Mu'Quillus incident. We were on tier two at the junction nodes, John handed me a tool, and when our skin touched I could feel the fire in my blood for him. We didn't get much work done that day. The memory burns me now, as I sit here alone, bleeding for him. My face is on fire with tears, not for the first time today. I cry a lot now.....even when I finally fall asleep, I awaken with a wet pillow. It's strange, it took cycles to break the emotional walls created in me by the Peacekeepers...how long will I have to suffer before I can rebuild those defenses? Am I to be forever crippled by my pain?

[There is no pressure for the hemorrhaging]
[There is no healing me]
[So what if I'm walking now?]
[I still burn every time that I breathe]
[I know this is nothing now but once it was everything]

After an arn or two, I give up the pretense of repairing the Prowler, and head for my quarters. Earlier, Chiana had asked if she could come and visit me, and reluctantly I said yes. She really wants to be like Zhaan, and she tries very hard to help. I appreciate it, and I tell her so, but she doesn't believe it's doing any good. She brings me some fragrant tea, remnants of Zhaan's herbal stash. It brings fresh tears to my eyes, to remember her.
"Hey Aeryn, it's okay to cry, you know." She has no idea the oceans of tears that I have cried lately. I pat her shoulder, as much to comfort myself as anything else, and attempt a smile. My voice is currently out of order, so all I can do is sip my tea. After a few arns of not-so-uncomfortable silence, she hugs me and leaves. I think she's waiting for me to want to talk about it, so she can be there to comfort me. I try to let her know that I appreciate her efforts, but it never comes out right.... I hope she understands.... she really is a good person, in spite of all the problems she and I have had. I let her come visit as often as she wants, because sometimes the alternative-being alone-is worse. Even now, I wish she'd stayed, because now I have to contend with the nighttime loneliness. I go through the motions of getting ready to sleep, and lay down underneath the cold blankets, sighing as I pull them up to my chin.
At some time during the night, I awaken to the sound of voices. I immediately pick up on Crichton's and D'Argo's, having some kind of discussion. The familiar sound of Crichton's voice brings me completely awake and alert, heart racing and head pounding. I hold my breath and wait until they pass my room, still talking about something I can't comprehend. I finally release my breath, and it comes out as a sob. I cry silently, reminded of the love that was ripped from me like a knife, leaving a gaping bloody hole. This is no way to live.

[It rips me from my dreams]
[I swear I heard your voice]
[I run from room to room to find you]

[So what if I'm walking now?]
[I still burn every time that I breathe]
[I know this is nothing]
[To me this is everything]

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Story by Miserichick

Disclaimer and explanation: This is a local goth band that I've been listening to for a year or so.....upon hearing this song for the umpteenth time, I've realized that it makes a great angsty post TalynJC-death story from Aeryn's POV....after "The Choice"....when she leaves Valldon and rejoins Moya and her crew. Lyrics are by Tapping the Vein, story by me....characters owned by Brian Henson/Rockne O'Bannon, and I bow to their feet for bringing them to us to play with.

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