By Kimberley Junius






   What is a kiss?

   It is the touching of mouths, the slick roughness of entwined tongues and the taste of the alien sweetness of another's bodily fluids. It is the embrace, that soul-deep remembrance of the security of the womb. It is the sharing of breath and the feel of one heart beating against another.

   It was the beginning of the end of all she wanted. It was the end of the beginning of all he wanted. It ended with a sigh, and a closer press of their bodies and the whisper of a name.


   It was the last thing he'd said before he died, and somehow she knew that. Somehow he managed to convey that, and all that it meant, through his kiss and in the way that he held her.

   She turned in the circle of his arms until her back was to him. John pulled her close, burrowing beneath her deep brown fall of hair to nuzzle her neck. She leaned into the strength of him, and his hands left her shoulders to boldly roam the curves of her body, cup her breasts. His touch was gentle, almost reverent, yet didn't quite distract her from the feel of his desire for her, pressed against the small of her back.

   "You know," he reminded her, "you still owe me two more nights together."

   She smiled. "I have not forgotten. I have been worried that we might be interrupted again." She turned her head to look over her shoulder, her expression serious. "If you have any more wives, John, I think you should tell me."

   John opened his mouth to reassure her when he realized that she was putting him on. He chuckled, then drew her close again. "There's only one person who even comes close," he whispered in her ear. "And she's in my arms right now."

   She closed her eyes, unable to think of anything to say to this. He took her silence for yes and let his hand wander downward, to caress her belly. He couldn't possibly have known this but to caress a Minbari in that manner was an act of foreplay comparable to oral sex with a human. Delenn let herself wallow in the sensation for a long moment before she pulled away.

   "We are going to sleep," she scolded. Her breathlessness belied the strength of her declaration.

   "Yes, ma'am," John said obediently. His acquiescence only went as far as his voice, however. The look in his eye was that of a man who was falling off a cliff. "Do I get to undress you this time, too?"

   "That depends," she said, drawing herself up and trying to breathe normally. "Do you think you can still trust yourself?"

   He fingered her sleeve for a moment before he reeled her in by it. "I think so," he said, his eyes on his work as he began to undo the jeweled fastener at her waist. "It's you I don't trust."

   She looked up at him, surprised. He was teasing her; she could see it sparkling in his eyes and she relaxed. "You are right," she said, placing her hands on his chest. "I am not sure I can be trusted..."

   "Not to jump my bones?" John said. "Never mind," he answered her puzzled look. "That one's better explained in the demonstration." He kissed her again, briefly, then he looked deeply into her eyes. He sighed. "This is not going to be easy."

   "Nothing important ever is," Delenn said softly. She shrugged out of her overtunic, handed it to him, then took his hand and led him into the bedroom.

   John's sleeping face was altered, changed from the one she'd seen before... before. She watched him as she had the first night, except this time she was cocooned in weariness herself. She would never admit this to anyone, but her fast had weakened her. She needed to sleep but more than that she needed to see.

   What she saw pleased her still, despite the changes, and her relief at this was so great she felt lightheaded.

   Delenn wrapped the borrowed robe tightly around her and slipped under the covers beside him, snuggling close to his warmth. She fell asleep before she could compose her thoughts for dreaming.

   John woke to find his reason for living lying beside him, her head pillowed on both hands in the classic pose of the sleeper. Asleep, her face was childlike, innocent, and he stared at her for a long moment, drinking her with his eyes.

   As he reached out to caress her cheek, she began to speak. Startled he withdrew his hand. Her voice was high, breathy, as guileless as her face. Her words were alien, however. Minbari. Few came through her sleeptalk clearly; the ones that did, he didn't understand, save for one. "John..."

   "Yes?" he responded, but she continued her unconscious litany. So he rested his head on his hand and he watched and he listened. Her words sounded to him like a prayer.

   Suddenly she rolled over, fetching up against him. The press of her pliant body against his sent a shockwave through him that ignited his sleep-calmed passion. "Oh, god," he moaned, wanting, needing to pull her even closer, knowing that he should, he must push himself away if all they were going to do in this bed this night was sleep.

   Delenn woke against a hard place. The scent of the man was strong in her nostrils, the heat of him warmed her. She was only partially aware of these sensations as her unfocused gaze met his. She reached out her hand to touch his face. He intercepted it and guided it beneath the covers to his erection.

   That brought her fully awake. The feel of him in her hand had the same effect on her as her rolling over had on him. It was her turn to moan, now, as her body urgently and of its own volition prepared itself to be joined with his.

   "Delenn," he said hoarsely, "I think we..."

   "Don't think," she whispered. She released his cock and began to rub his belly. He wasn't Minbari, but no one had bothered to inform his nerve-endings.

   "It's now, isn't it?" he asked in a melting voice, helpless beneath her hand.

   "Yes," she said, and she climbed onto all fours, astride him. His robe engulfed her, and was threatening to do the same to him.

   "Let's take this off," he said. At her nod he loosened the belt. It took him longer than it should have because his hands trembled so, but he finally got her as naked as he was. She leaned into him and kissed him. He put his hands on her waist, to steady rather than guide. He wanted her to take him. He knew this was the way it should be with her.

   "You will forgive me if I am not as... practiced at this as I might be," Delenn said softly. "If I do something wrong, you will tell me?"

   John stared into her face for a very long time, adoring her. "How can you do anything wrong?" he wondered.

   Delenn smiled. "You must be in love," she teased.

   "I am in a state," he said fervently.

   Without another word she took him in hand again and guided him to herself.

   Control is a thing that you learn, and get better at as you grow older. As Delenn slowly began to take him inside, John was very glad he was older, otherwise this encounter would already be over.

   She was so small, and he could tell that he was hurting her -- he could feel it in the tension of her limbs, hear it in the noises she made. He hated that, yet despite it all he felt a pleasure so deep, so pure it was nearly unbearable. He felt power in his helplessness beneath her, and in the depth of a love that allowed him to be helpless. The pleasure, the power, made him strong.

   His hands tightened on her waist as she moaned in obvious pain. "Do you want to stop?" he asked. She shook her head and pushed herself upright. His hands slid down to her thighs, and she clasped them. He thought she was going to pull them away, but she simply held them as she looked down at herself taking him in.

   His gaze followed hers to a sight he never minded seeing, especially when he was one of the participants. He smiled and looked up to find her studying him.

   "Isn't that beautiful?" he said, in a voice she'd never heard him use before but was absolutely certain she'd get to know very well in the years to come. Right now, at this moment, it sent a tremor through her that had as much to do with what she felt as what she heard.

   "Beautiful?" she said, her own voice not steady at all.

   "Beautiful," he assured her, returning his gaze to their joining.

   "Yes," she agreed, watching him watching them.

   Slowly... slowly it happened, as he lay passive beneath her, accepting her even as she accepted him, giving himself as she gave herself. "I love you," he whispered, and he felt her react to his words, her inner muscles spasming around the head of his penis. She felt him react to her reaction, getting harder as he slipped farther into her.

   "Easy..." he whispered as she cried out, stifling his own cry as her nails dug into his flesh. "Take it slow, angel. Slow..."

   "Slow..." she echoed him. She stopped moving and let gravity impale her. This time pain had little to do with the sound she made.

   He freed his hand and began to stroke her clit. She gasped, and he felt those muscles clench again, clasping more of him this time. "Slow..." he reminded her, taking a split second to grab the control that was quickly slipping away from him. She moaned and he said, "Does it still hurt?" She shook her head. Somewhere in the sliding, in the falling, in the force of love, she'd stretched as much as she needed to fit him, and the pain had stopped. "Good..." He laced his fingers in hers. His other hand continued to caress her button as she moved slowly, slowly, slowly as he slid deeper, deeper and deeper until she'd received him completely.

   "Oh, god..." he said. She drew a breath that was positively musical, and then her head tipped back and the sound of him came out of her. Delenn yelled out her joy to the universe as the one she loved filled the only emptiness she had within her. She called out his name and he answered with her name as his need for her exploded in a warm, white, secret cloud deep within her. John held her, and he gave her everything that was in him, everything that he was.

   To give was excruciating pleasure. To receive was ecstasy.

   He did. She did.

   They fell.

   And then, they flew.

   She landed on his chest, gasping for air. He enfolded her in his arms and kissed her damp face, tasting the salt of an alien sea. A thought niggled at the back of his mind. He pushed it away and held on, held on to her and to the moment, the moment which was the only thing he could ever truly possess. And when that moment ended he asked, "Are you all right?"

   And after a longer moment she said, "I forgot..."

   John looked nonplussed. "Well, I knew I wasn't that good, but..."

   "No..." Delenn interrupted. She paused, searching for the words in his language. "I forgot... what sadness and pain were." She looked up at him. "Just for a moment... I forgot it all."

   He looked into her eyes and wondered, as he had for much longer than he'd realized, if he would ever get enough of looking into her eyes. Then he kissed her, and he wondered if he would ever get enough of doing that, too. "You are going to find yourself becoming very absent-minded in the future," he predicted, rolling her over onto her back and settling on top of her. "Because I intend to make you forget..." John grinned and, as always, she was helpless to do anything but respond in kind. "... every chance I get."

   Delenn's face suddenly went blank. "Forget? I'm sorry, John, but I do not remember..." Her words were drowned out by his growl as he attacked her, nuzzling her neck and making her giggle.

   "Ambassador," John informed her as he came up for air, "you're giggling."

   Delenn stopped giggling long enough to frown at him. "I do not... giggle. It is not dignified."

   John raised his eyebrows. "Ambassador, you're in the process of getting laid. If there's an activity that is less dignified, I don't know what it is."

   "'Getting laid'?" The Ambassador's grey eyes lit up with curiosity. "Is this another human term for..."

   "Yes," John said dryly. "We've got a thousand of 'em, some silly, some obscure, most of them fun, and all of them just another word for fucking."

   "Fucking..." she began.

   John hastily laid a finger across her lips. "That's one you shouldn't bandy about," he told her. "At least, not in polite company."

   "Why not? It seems like a perfectly useful word." She tried it out. "Fucking... fucking... fuck..."


   "Yes?" She looked up at him, eyes innocent. This isn't possible, he thought as his heart swelled with love for her. This is much too wonderful to be real.

   "Maybe you shouldn't bandy that word about in impolite company, either."

   "Do you like that word?" she asked suddenly, remembering the way he'd watched their bodies couple and the sound of his voice.

   Discomfort flitted across his features. Unable to lie to her, however, he answered, "Yes."

   "Then I will say that word for you..." She ran her fingers along his sides, trailing them over the curve of his ass, drawing spirals there until he felt lightning fork through his spine, until he thought he'd go mad. He closed his eyes, completely lost in the sensation, and he said, "I think I'd like that..."

   So Delenn whispered, "I want you to fuck me, John... is that the correct way to use that word?"

   "Huh?" Her hands had tightened on his backside, pulling him close. Between that and what she was saying, coherent thought never had a chance. He worked his hands between her and the mattress, not needing them to find where she loved him, to slide into her again. He thrust deeply, hit bottom and she froze, seized by a blinding pain that was six-eighths pleasure. She yelped and he stopped and withdrew slightly, mumbling an apology. "Better?" he asked, after an excruciating pause, and when she nodded he carefully gave her his length again.

   "Oh, yes..." she said breathlessly, astonished by the feel of him, harbored inside her. "I love fucking you," she murmured, warming to the game and realizing something humans often said which she'd never understood before: how one could "love" an activity.

   "Wanna give you... a lot to love," he panted. "Raise your legs." She did so, bringing her knees almost to the mattress. She could barely move in this position, but she didn't need to. He did it all.

   He pulled his hands from beneath her and took both her hands in his, stretching her arms above her head. As he leaned against the soft pillows of her breasts, he sought and found that perfect contact, the slight, rigid press of her erect clit against his shaft. He maintained that contact, breaking it occasionally to penetrate her fully, drawing an "Oooh..." from her as he did so, a sound of awe and delight.

   "I love fucking you, too," John said, his voice raspy with pleasure. "I love kissing you... I love touching you... I love hearing you talk, I love being near you... I love you so much, Delenn."

   This time her climax was silent. As he held onto her hands, as he filled her body with his own, as he watched her, staring into her face, looking into her eyes. Her eyes slipped shut and he could feel her inner muscles milk his cock. "Take me," he whispered. "Take all of me..." And he went rigid as she drew the cream from him, impossibly, for the second time that night. He filled her with it and she came again as she accepted it and there was nothing quiet about it this time except the profound silence when it ended.

   He rested his cheek against hers, bracing himself on elbows and knees to keep from mashing her. There seemed to be comets zooming across his field of vision, and when she lowered her legs and entwined them with his, the velocity of those comets increased. He pulled back a little to look at her. Her eyes were heavy-lidded and the expression on her face could be found in the dictionary under "sated." That thought made him smile, a smile her lips answered faintly. He caressed her face, his fingers gently tracing that which was least human about her: the browless ridges over her eyes and the place where the vestigial remnant of her headbone blended into the skin at her temple. The motion of his hand stilled as the thought that had niggled at him earlier returned to splatter itself behind his forehead, destroying his lassitude. He rolled off her and onto his back and lay there for a long time, staring at the ceiling, stunned.

   "John?" Delenn said. He could hear concern trying to overcome the sleepiness in her voice. "Is something wrong?"

   "No," he said immediately.

   "Yes," she contradicted him. "What is it?"

   He sat up, then turned to face her, looked down at her silently for a long time. She looked back at him, sleepily meeting his eye, and again he felt love for her wash over him like a tidal wave. Her dark brown hair was spread all over his pillow. Her hair...

   "You did it for me, didn't you?"

   She didn't ask him to clarify. Everything she did was for him. "Yes."

   "I have never consciously thought of you as anything but Minbari," John said slowly. "I have seen you, known you for more than two years. I fell in love with you and still it never occurred to me that you had changed, that you were now radically different from what you'd been all your life."

   Delenn began to cry. He pulled her into his arms and held her close. He continued, "I never thought about how great that change must have been until I was inside you and you felt... like you had no business feeling. Like you were made for me." He kissed her forehead -- her alien forehead. "I never thought, until this moment, just how much that change might have cost you."

   "No one thought," she sobbed. She looked up at him and he gently smoothed away her tears with his thumbs. "Except Lennier, perhaps. But no one seemed to care, only to make accusations..."

   "Caring didn't seem to be required. You were always so self-possessed," John pointed out. "I didn't know you before, but no one who did ever noticed anything but the outward change. But there was so much more than that, wasn't there?"

   "Everything changed, John. Everything..." She was silent for a long moment. "The bleeding was the worst," she said.

   He made a comforting noise as he tightened his embrace. "Human women say the same thing."

   She looked up at him, surprised. "Do they?"

   "I've known women who considered it a positive thing, but they've been few and far between."

   She looked away. "I thought, how do they bear this loss, this pain, every month since they were children? I thought, how do I bear it, now? I wondered what could be worth this." She looked up at him again and as he looked into her quartz crystal eyes, he felt he could see into her very soul. "But when you were inside me, I knew. When we were one, I understood."

   "And was it worth it?" John asked, because he didn't know the answer.

   "Yes," Delenn replied softly. "It was worth it all."

   John thought about that for a moment, then he told the soul he saw in her eyes that they were going to have a child together.

   "That cannot be possible," she said, sounding thoroughly unconvinced of the truth of her own statement.

   "Not only is it possible, it happens," John said. "I saw the future, remember?"

   "I remember," Delenn said. She sounded unconvinced of the truth of his statement, too.

   "You don't believe me," he said, accusingly.

   "Does it matter if I believe? If it will be, it will be," she said. She gently touched his lips with her own, not quite kissing him. "And I am happy. You see me, now."

   "I'm happy, too." A wicked grin appeared on John's face, her disbelief forgotten. "Not only do I see you... I want to eat you." He bared his teeth at her.

   Delenn looked amused. "Should I be afraid?"

   "Be very afraid," John assured her as he pushed her back down on the bed and began gnawing at her neck. She giggled, and he said, "You're giggling, again."

   "I love you." She said the words like a bud bursting into blossom.

   "I love you, " he said, suddenly serious. "With all my heart."

   He left her, and when she reached out her hand in protest he told her, "I'll be back." He disappeared into the bathroom for a moment, then returned with a damp towel which he used to clean her up. And when he finished cleaning her up he parted her thighs and made good on his threat to eat her.

   Her melodic moans of pleasure filled his ears as his tongue learned the sweetly convoluted lesson of her womanhood. His lips fastened on her clit and as her hips began to rise and fall in rhythm with his sucking, he thought again of the profound change Delenn had undergone to make this moment possible.

   Passion flowed through them both as she grabbed his head and pulled him closer to her center, that most private part of her. The familiar strangeness of it aroused him -- her scent one no woman born of humanity could possibly possess, her flavor hers alone. He wanted to tell her again that he loved her, but his mouth was otherwise engaged.

   He sucked her to the brink and she toppled over it, amazed at John's ability to do this to her. She was still buzzing from her orgasm when he entered her, and she wrapped her arms and legs around him and simply held him close. He fastened on her neck again; joined to him now, the tickling turned into an intensely erotic sensation to which she responded by rotating her hips.

   "Ohh... that's good..." he moaned into her ear.

   "Good..." she cooed, lost in the delicious sensation of fucking the man she loved. She cried out, "Again!" as a minor orgasm rippled through her. He held her down and said, "Together next time." She moaned acquiescence as she blindly sought his mouth for the kiss he gave without reservation. "With me," he said, as he broke the kiss. "Yes," she said and he kissed her again, his tongue thrusting into her wide open mouth in mimicry of their lovemaking. "Do you want this?" he asked her. "I want you," she answered. "You have me," he murmured. "My body is yours... my heart is yours..." John slid his hands beneath her and pulled her hard against him, thrusting into her as far as he could. "I can't... I can't get deep enough inside you," he whispered desperately. "Try, my love," Delenn answered. "Because I want you there..."

   Sometimes it only takes a word. Their bodies stilled in an agony of bliss as her sweet pussy spasmed in perfect sync with his ejaculation. Release turned savage as she clawed him and he bit her, both in their extremity. She cried out in pain and he released her. "I'm sorry," he said, then burst into tears. Overcome by the same emotion, she began to weep, too.

   "Don't cry, my love," she whispered, wiping his tears, taking his face in her hands, touching it in a way that made him remember the future. This was where it began. "Don't cry..."

   He took her hand and kissed it, then kissed her tears away. He drew a shaky breath, then said, "We did it."

   "We can do anything, John," Delenn whispered, tears welling up in her grey eyes again. "Anything..."

   "Anything," he agreed, and she took his mouth with her own.

   It was a deep, quiet kiss that was full of love but held only the faintest memory of the passion they'd just shared. It was the kiss at the end of things, and when they broke it he withdrew from her. Delenn made a little noise of protest and he paused. "You couldn't possibly want me to stay inside you as much as I want to stay inside you. We have an old saying that goes..."

   "'The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.'" He gaped at her. She shrugged. "It is an old Minbari saying, stolen by humans."

   "It is not!" he protested.

   "But it is. It is one of Valen's more obscure sayings, but..."

   "Okay, I get the picture," John grumbled. "Do you have any idea how many similar arguments you can win with that one?"

   "Yes," Delenn said sweetly, then changed the subject. "Have I... jumped your bones enough for one night."

   John smiled at that one coming back to haunt him. "Maybe. Maybe not. Either way, I want you to stay. I want to sleep beside you and I want you to be here when I wake up."

   "How strange," she mused. "I want that, too."

   "Good. Then it's settled." He pulled her close and spooned himself against her back.

   After a few minutes Delenn spoke into the darkness. "John?"

   "Ignore it," John said. "It'll go away."

   "I have spent most of this evening learning other ways to make it go away," Delenn remarked. She squirmed against him and he gasped.

   "I'm too old for this," he protested, and when she moaned and wriggled again, he said sternly, "And you're greedy."

   "I am what you have made me," Delenn said richly, turning over onto her stomach, spreading her legs and arching her back in an offer John found impossible to refuse.

   "Damn you," he muttered as he got into position behind her and pulled her up to meet him. He bent and kissed one small cheek, then the other. "Now you can say I kiss your ass," he announced. Delenn laughed, a laugh that ended in a gasp when he entered her from behind.

   "Oh, god..." he muttered. "Oh, honey, I'm about to break a land speed record, here..." he said, and did so. She surprised him and herself by coming hard on his heels. Spent, they toppled over on their sides, still joined.

   "That was nice," he murmured. "Expeditious, but nice."

   "And we are still one," she said softly.

   He smiled. "You always get what you want, don't you."

   "Sometimes," she said, sighed and fell asleep.

   "Sometimes," John whispered. He pulled her even closer and fell asleep himself.

   His wake-up call brought them around in the morning. John sat up and stretched and thought it odd but wonderful that Delenn's presence in his bed felt so unremarkable. She made a soft, waking-up noise, then rolled over and reached around him, pulling herself up until her head was in his lap. Before he had time to tumble to what she was about to do, she was doing it.

   The intensity of it sent the back of his head to make sharp contact with the wall. The noise was loud and his head smarted and neither of these things was enough to distract him from the sensation of his penis in her mouth, warm and wet, and her tongue was...

   "Oh, god," John moaned. "Oh..." He put out his hand and encountered her crown and the texture of it, its roughness, its smoothness, the differentness of it as it bobbed in an ancient rhythm as she sucked him off, set him off. He cried out as he came and she swallowed. She moaned softly and swirled her tongue around his deflating member one last time before releasing him with a final kiss.

   He grabbed her arms and hauled her up to eye level. Staring into her face he saw something that made him suddenly kiss her very hard. He could taste his semen on the back of her tongue, and that made him kiss her even harder. And when he had enough, he released her and asked

   "Did you really enjoy that? And don't tell me that my pleasure is your pleasure."

   "Why not?" Delenn said levelly. "If it is the truth."

   "Did it please you?" he insisted.

   "Yes," she said, and when John looked skeptical she said, "There is a place you can touch to see if I am telling the truth." And when John looked puzzled, she said, "Think about it."

   He thought about it while she watched his face. It came to him in fairly short order. He looked into her eyes as he reached beneath her and she gasped as his searching fingers slid easily past slick, swollen lips and into the tight, sweet depths of her vagina.

   "I guess you liked it as much as I did," he whispered, idly finger-fucking her.

   "I like this... too..." she said breathlessly.

   He cupped the side of her face and kissed her parted lips. "I want to please you, Delenn," he murmured, his voice rough and barely audible. His voice sent a shiver chasing up her spine. "Tell me how you want me."

   She showed him instead, pulling his fingers out of her and guiding his stiffening cock to the place where they'd been. Joined to him once more, she wrapped her legs and arms around him and held him tightly, rocking her hips, barely moving, while he gently kissed those parts of her his mouth could reach and caressed everything else, from the tips of her toes to the silky ends of her hair.

   They made love that way for a long time, slowly... sweetly... delicately. They came together again, and John wondered, after all the shouting was over, if their coming together would become a regular thing. Delenn, predictably, replied that only time would tell.

   Lovemaking finished, at least for now, they made themselves ready for the day, moving around each other in a prosy dance so well-executed it might have been their thousandth morning after, rather than their first. She had just finished brushing her hair when she noticed something. He came up behind her as she was staring into the mirror with something like superstitious dread at an angry-looking mark on her neck. The high collar of her dress barely hid it.

   "Oops," John said. "Looks like somebody gave you a hickey."

   She frowned at his reflection in the mirror. "Hick-ee?"

   "Yeah. Hickeys are greatly prized among young humans." John grinned. "It's an outward sign of someone's passion."

   "It looks more like an outward sign of someone's hunger," Delenn returned, grumpily. She tugged the collar of her dress higher. "I feel like a piece of meat."

   John's grin widened and he hugged her from behind. "No one will notice."

   "Everyone will notice," she said sourly. "And do you know what they will say? 'Look! Delenn finally got laid!'"

   John choked back laughter, then coughed to cover it up. "You say that as if it were a bad thing," he said in a strained voice.

   "Outward sign..." Delenn said impatiently. "When do I give you an outward sign? Shall I give you a ring, too, like the one you gave me?"

   John took her left hand and gently kissed the ring and the finger that graced it. "When we get married, you can give me a ring. In the meantime..." He turned her hand over and kissed her palm. "Your outward sign is my life. Because I wouldn't be here now if I didn't love you, if you weren't everything you are that made me love you."

   Delenn looked down at the hand that held her hand. It was so much bigger than hers, only twenty years away from dust. Twenty years... Her eyes filled. She blinked the tears back. There wasn't time for them now. She drew a breath and looked up at her beloved with dry eyes. "I suppose," she said ironically, "I will have to settle for that."

   "I suppose you will," said John, who'd seen the tears and somehow knew what they were for. "Come on," he said gently. "I'll walk you home."

   The corridors were virtually empty this time of the day. Few saw their slow journey and those who did see had no idea how much a simple walk could be savored by two people.

   They kissed at her door, slowly, sweetly. After a long time, John released her with a sigh. "If I don't stop now, you'll have to invite me in." Delenn smiled and he said, "I'll see you tonight?"

   "Yes," she said. He kissed her once more, briefly, then he was off, down the corridor.

   Delenn watched him until he'd turned the corner and was out of sight. Then she went inside. She went to her couch and sat down, drawing her legs up in the meditation pose. She was very sore in the place where a woman gets sore if she's spent the night with the man she loves, and she smiled at the thought of him even as she winced at the pain.

   Meditation wasn't possible. She was too full of John to still her thoughts, even for a second. So she sat and she went over every minute of every hour they'd spent together last night, right up to the last moment she'd seen him. And when she came to the end of those memories she wrote these words in her journal:


He left
and took a part of me with him
to bring back
when he returned
to make me whole again.





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