Welcome To The Harem

Fleeting by Julie L. Jekel
Summary: Melissa Scully's one-time lover tries to come to grips with her death. Highlander crossover, sort-of Six Feet Under Challenge fic.

Hey guys--

It occurred to me the other day that I sortof answered the Six Feet Under
challenge before it was ever issued. *g* Several years before, in
fact. But I've never posted this story to a list before,
so...consider yourselves privileged. ;-)

The story does have a prequel, but it's currently unfinished and
kinda stuck that way. *sigh* Oh well. Hopefully someday I'll finish


PS--For the record, I happen to think (or at least hope) that my
writing has improved since I wrote this, but I hope you'll enjoy it
anyway. :-)

TITLE: Fleeting

AUTHOR: Azar (Julie L. Jekel)

Disclaimers: They're not mine. Duh. :-)

Category: XRA

Archive: Gossamer, Ephemeral, HoXFOWD are all okay. Anywhere else,
ask me first.

Feedback: PLEASE! azarsuerte@hotmail.com or just hit reply

Spoilers: For "Anasazi"/"The Blessing Way"/"Paper Clip" and "One
Breath," if by some bizarre chance anyone hasn't seen those yet.

Keywords: Melissa/other romance, crossover with ? (that's for me to
know and you to find out. ;-) )

Summary: Melissa Scully's one-time lover tries to come to grips with
her death.

by Julie L. Jekel

I can't believe she's gone.

I mean, I always knew it would happen someday. People die, and God
knows I've certainly seen my share of it. I lost one of the dearest
people in my life only a year ago. I just didn't expect it to happen
again so soon...or in such a similar way.

Her mother was the one who let me know. She called me, even though
I'd only spoken to her once before and it had been clear she
disapproved of her daughter's fling with a boy barely out of his
teens. I've never met any of her family in person. In the short time
we had together I never even saw her home. She walked into my life
one day, made it sparkle for a few short weeks, then raced home to
wait at what she thought was her sister's deathbed. But her sister
lived and we promised each other we'd meet again someday. I only wish
it was a promise we could have kept, but where she is now is a place
I don't know if I'll ever see.

We never really had a future--we knew that from the beginning. I
never really understood why I told her everything, especially since
it only delineated the differences between us. She was a woman who
chose a path of peace. I was a man drafted by fate into a lifestyle
of war. And the age difference between us would only seem to widen. I
used to tease her about that. I'd joke about how much harder it would
get, as time went on, for people to accept the idea of her being with
a much younger man.

I expected her to laugh at my story. I expected her to demand proof.
And I expected her, once she had it, to turn away in disgust because
I was in many ways the opposite of everything she stood for. But she
didn't demand proof. She accepted it--accepted me--the same way she
accepted everything and everyone, without question or condition. No
other lover has ever given me that.

I didn't come to her funeral. I told myself that it was too far to
travel and I didn't want to cause any trouble for her family when
they had enough to deal with. But I guess a part of me knew I was
really afraid to face them. Especially the younger sister she'd left
my side to be with. The sister whose life, in a cruel twist of fate,
had been spared by my lover's death.

It was a mistake, an accident. She was never supposed to die. But
that doesn't make it any easier. Deliberate or no, the end result is
still the same. Just like the "accident" that took the life of the
woman who was the only mother I could remember and would have taken
mine too if not for a fantastic fluke of destiny.

I never expected to outlive them both by the age of twenty-one.

The cemetery is empty and quiet today. It feels right somehow--like
anything other than this somber silence would be disrespectful. A
bouquet of orchids and carnations lies on top of her grave, making me
hesitate for a moment. As fresh as those flowers are, whoever left
them might still be here. And if they saw me...well, I don't think
they'd have too much trouble figuring out who I am.

I'm the guy who was never supposed to fall in love with her. At the
time, I didn't even think I could. After all, I was still nineteen.

The grass is wet but I barely feel it as I kneel beside her
tombstone. It makes me smile, picturing how she'd laugh if she knew I
was here, that I'd come all the way across the country to say
goodbye. She was always laughing, even when she spoke with a wisdom
beyond both our years.

I lay my offering of white daisies beside the elaborate bouquet,
wishing I could afford something more even though I know she wouldn't
want it. Simple things always suited her best. Simple, natural, and

A familiar sensation strikes me then, and I turn warily, even though
I know no one can hurt me on Holy Ground. The friend who brought me
here is waiting some distance away, giving me the time alone with her
that I need. I brush off the knees of my jeans and stand with a sigh.

Duncan smiles sympathetically as I reach him. "Ready to go?" he asks.

I nod. "Thanks for understanding why I had to come."

Still smiling, he wraps a fatherly arm around my shoulders. "Anytime,

As we walk back towards the car, I turn my head to look back at her
tombstone, thinking again how appropriate the inscription is:

Melissa Scully
Beloved Sister and Daughter
Only the good die young.


Author's note: For anyone who didn't catch it, the crossover is with
Highlander: the Series. :-)