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Call a dog and they come, call
a cat and they take a message
and get back to you later.
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Reflections of Faye Valentine

by crawfsh

Don't read unless you have seen episodes 25 and 26 of Cowboy Bebop!

Laying there asleep in bed, she suddenly awoke to the sound of voices. Straining her ears, she was able to make out Jets deep, booming voice, and also...

Spike!

He had come back, when she was so sure she would never get to see him again. Swiftly, she climbed out of bed and headed for the living room, stopping just short of entering in, deciding to wait and listen to see what had happened. Spike she could hear telling some story about two cats who were madly in love, then ended up dying together because of it. Listening to his voice, she suddenly knew he didn't intend to stay, that he had only returned one last time, to say his final farewells.

"Hey Spike, I just want to ask you one thing," asked Jet.

"What's that?"

"Is it for the girl?"

Spike paused a moment, the forced humor leaving him entirely.

"She's dead, there is nothing more I can do for her now"

Faye felt her heart race at this announcement. Part of her was saddened, for she had actually liked Julia, and she knew how much she meant to Spike. But part of her couldn't help but feel relieved, knowing that he was now FREE, that she might finally get the chance she had been looking for.

As Spike steeped around the corner she was hiding behind, she stopped him, putting her six shooter to his head.

"Where ya going?," she asked him. "Why are you going?" When he did not immediately answer her, she stepped back, lowering the gun. "You told me once to forget the past, that it doesn't mater. But your the one still tied to the past Spike!"

He stared at her a moment, then stepped forward, closing the gap between the two of them. He suddenly leaned forward, causing her to lean back as his face was suddenly mere inches from hers.

"Look into my eyes Faye. One of them is a fake because I lost it in an accident. Since then, I have been seeing the past in one eye, and the present in the other. So I thought I could only see patches of reality, never the whole picture."

Faye's voice trembled at the effort of trying not to break down, trying not to cry.

"Don't tell me things like that. You have never told me any thing about yourself, so don't tell me now!"

Spike continued on, as if he hadn't heard her at all.

"I thought I was watching a dream that I would never wake up from. Before I knew it, the dream was all over."

With a slight smile on his face, he turned and walked around her, heading for the hanger deck, and his final meeting with Vicious.

She turned from him, hiding the hurt in her eyes.

"My memory... finally came back. But... nothing good came of it. There was no place for me to return to. THIS was the only place I could come... and now you are leaving, just like that!"

She paused, thinking, as Spike just stood there, not saying anything.

'Why do you have to go? Where are you going? What are you going to do, just throw your life away like it was nothing?'

'I'm not going there to die. I'm going to find out if I am really alive. I have to do it Faye!"

With that he started off down the hall again, leaving her staring at his departing back. She knew then that no mater what she said or did, nothing would change him. And this time, she would be unable to help him, unable to save him from his own past.

As the tears welled up in her eyes, she pointed her gun at him once more, before turning it up to the ceiling over head. She fired once, sobbing, squeezing the trigger, twice, three, four, five shots, as the spent casings fell as heavily as her tears.

Leaning against the side of the hall, she cried as she had not allowed herself to do so far, hands twitching in hidden spasms at her plight. With a sudden moment of clarity, she remembered the police scanner Jet had in his room. Moving swiftly, she gathered it, taking it out to the deck and setting it up. It only took her a moment to tune in to reports of an attack on the skyscraper known to be the headquarters of the Red Dragons.

She stood, staring out in the direction he had gone, only a small part of her mind actually listening to the broadcast. Instead, most of her thoughts were turned to the past. She had never meant to fall in love with him, with any man. Once, she had thought she had found love, but all that had shown her was how men really acted, what they really thought and did. In the years since she had spent her time on the run, never giving any thought to love. She was, of course, very aware of how she looked, and what type of reaction it tended to produce in men, but while a moments company could always be found if she wished it, love was some thing else entirely.

Then she had met Spike, a man that was so unlike any other she had ever known. He was a fierce fighter, a killer marksman, and a feared bounty hunter. Cool and composed, he rarely let his emotions get the best of him. Yet deep down, hell, not really all that deep down there was a second side to him. A gentle, if lonely, side that he tried to pretend didn't exist. It was that side, she thought, that first drew her to him.

But it was more then that, she realized. Spike reminded of herself, in so many ways. They both played the great game, gambling everything they had (and sometimes things they didn't) at a moment notice, each moving forever forward into the future while trying to forget a past that they were still tied to. In finding her opposite pair, she had finally found the one she loved. He, however, was still in love with another woman, some shadowy figure from his past. Until he was free of her, he could never truly move on with his future. But now, it looked like that future might just be over with.

As she stood there on the deck, staring at the night sky, lost in her thoughts, the radio behind her continued its broadcast, this time to say that the top of the building had apparently been blown totally off. Police units in the sky hovered over the building, but no sign of life on the top floor could be found. Meanwhile, the explosions out the sides and from off the top of the building had finally given the police enough of a reason to storm the building, which there were now preparing to do.

Faye heard all this only peripherally, but it was enough to bring her back to the present. She stared into the night, feeling only numbness now, as she watched a star suddenly get bright, before fading out. Deep inside her, she some how knew that the worse had happened, that he was gone from her forever. He had fought his final battle, and win or loose, it had claimed him.

She stared down at the ground below, aware only of a few simple things, such as the dry wind that blew across the area, the dead silence that filled the night, the deep sadness in her heart, the warm gun still in her hand, its sixth and final bullet still loaded. She raised her face to the night once more, as her tears bathed her, cleansing her, preparing her. She raised the gun one last time.

Sayonara...


 
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