By Carol Sandford


Chapter 10


"Smell this one, Will, it's called Cherrydew," She plucked the deep Burgundy bloom and held it under his nose, her face alight with mischief and wonder, "It smells just like the fruit, doesn't it?"

Will breathed in the sweet, and yes, definitely cherry scented fragrance, and murmured his agreement, trying his hardest to keep his chain of thought directed to the flower in question and not that he'd just recently had tasted something else that had decidedly tasted of something similar.

Deanna watched as his eyes flared with desire and instinctively knew that he wasn't thinking about the flower in her fingers but something else a little more...erotic. Twirling the bloom between her fingertips, she linked her arm with his again and they continued moving around the vast flower beds.

They looked like a normal, happy couple on a warm, summer's day, admiring the flora and fauna in the arboretum. Only it wasn't a warm, summer's day. It was three o'clock in the morning. It was pitch black, apart from the illuminations, and the couple were both stark naked.

They had made love again, but this time their love-making had been different. It had been romantic. Now that the fears had vanished, and the newness of intimacy had gone too, a new awareness had risen. Love had emerged from its secret place and surrounded them both with its power. When Will had entered her a second time, it was with not only her blessing, but her culture's, and perversely, he felt it was with her mother's approval, too.

But even so, the shadow of his eventual leaving hovered between them, and it was the next large hurdle they faced. Could he stay? Should he go? Could he leave her behind? In the back of his mind, the questions churned over and over, sullying the precious memories he was creating in the here and now.

Deanna looked up into his face, her eyes alive with feeling. He dropped a quick kiss to her lips, slipping his arm around her shoulders and pulling her against his side, making an effort to dispel the nasty thoughts until another time. Until he had no choice but to think about them. He felt her own slim arm snake around his waist and he sighed with contentment, squeezing her shoulder to spread the feeling across to her. She answered him with a squeeze of her own.

Slowly, they gradually made their way back to the gazebo, and reluctantly began to put on their clothes, knowing that it was time to step back into reality. From the moment they had sealed themselves in the glass dome, their life had become surreal. Unforgettable.

As the folds of her crimson dress shimmered down her thighs, Will slipped on the last piece of his attire, his shoe, and then it was done; they were back to normal. Back to the now, and as they stood face to face, a shyness stole over each other and silence balanced equally between them.

But pushing aside the shyness, they unanimously stepped into each other's arms. They felt as though they were saying goodbye, even though the feeling was illogical. Will wasn't leaving, and Deanna had long since accepted that destiny had taken over and shown her what her future held.

But then with a flip of the coin, Will remembered that he was leaving - probably sooner than later, and destiny had got it wrong for Deanna. How could she survive without her Imzadi by her side? How was she going to survive without her Imzadi by her side?

Too many changes were happening tonight, and every one of them was out of their control, except one. The important one. Imzadi. The were both aware that they could, and probably would, walk away and never see each other again. And they both knew that their lives had changed forever, not because of Imzadi, but because of love. They had fallen in love. They had become lovers, and they would always have the memories.

But Imzadi...Imzadi had bound them together for eternity, no matter what. Love could move on, a second best could take the place of the one, true love. And time could be forgotten, and so could memories, but there would always be Imzadi.


"Will I see you tomorrow?"

The whispered question tickled her ear, and Deanna smiled, drawing his body even closer than before if possible. She slid her hands up his back, testing the texture and marvelling at the power in his shoulders.

She dropped a light kiss upon his smooth cheek, her own voice as quiet as his.

"Yes." And then she was gone.

Will watched the door close with a quiet click, her perfume, along with another scent now, lingering in the porch way, and he drew a deep breath, savouring and saving it for a private moment alone when he got to his quarters.

He groaned as he turned, already missing her. Suddenly tomorrow seemed a lifetime away.

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