Janus brings Hayley back from Australia, after she breaks her oath to Diamond

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  • Hayley is sitting on the west coast of Australia at night.
  • Hayley is several km N of her old school.

<Janus> * Sound of many beating wings...

  • Janus steps out of the shadows.

<Hayley> (I know it's in that bit of story... but, it's what she'd do... I'm interested in what you'll do)

  • Hayley doesn't turn around to look at you.

<Hayley> Hello Janus.

<Janus> Hello, Hayley.

<Hayley> I was wondering when you'd show up.

<Hayley> Did Windrider miss me?

  • Janus 's voice sounds tired, yet displeased.

<Hayley> Or was it the Countess?

<Janus> He told me what happened, yes.

  • Hayley nods her head, still facing the waves.

<Hayley> I couldn't stay there anymore. I'm sorry.

<Janus> Sorry?

<Janus> Do you even begin to comprehend what it is that you've done?

  • Hayley turns slightly to look at him.
  • Janus takes a step closer.

<Hayley> I broke an oath, yada-yah.

<Janus> You don't, do you?

<Janus> You truly are a child!

  • Janus says, angrily.
  • Hayley says calmly, but she is trembling.

<Janus> Beyond the dishonour you've brought to my mother's name, have you *any idea* what this means?

<Hayley> I couldn't just sit there, twiddling my thumbs.

<Hayley> I have to /do/ something.

  • Hayley looks decidedly unhappy.

<Janus> There's doing something, and then there's breaking an oath to House Eiluned!

<Hayley> Are you going to put me to death then?

  • Janus sighs, rubs the bridge of his nose.

<Janus> I'm going to take you back.

<Hayley> Try if you like, it ought to be interesting.

<Hayley> I'm not going back.

<Janus> I may be able to convince them to let this pass...

<Hayley> Aren't you listening?

<Hayley> I'm not going back.

<Hayley> I can't stand it there!

<Hayley> Everything reminds me -

<Janus> Reminds you of what?

  • Hayley clamps her mouth shut and turns away from Janus.

<Janus> What about my family's hospitality so revolted you that you had to break our sacred oaths?

<Hayley> It wasn't the hospitality. It was very kind of you and your mother.

<Janus> You have a strange way of repaying kindness.

  • Hayley 's eyes flash.

<Hayley> I'm sorry.

<Hayley> I couldn't stay there any longer- I was losing myself there!

  • Hayley 's voice is a bit strangled.

<Hayley> (she's half-facing Janus, but not looking at him)

<Janus> ...

<Janus> What is it you're not telling me?

<Hayley> I- Don't ask me to say it, please...

  • Hayley has turned to face him, eyes pleading.

<Janus> Say what?

  • Janus looks wary.
  • Hayley turns her face away and down, an unpleasant frown twisting her features.
  • Hayley shifts smoothly to another tack, trying to change the subject.

<Hayley> I went by my old home...

<Hayley> There's a new family there... with a baby.

<Hayley> They look so happy.

<Hayley> Not like my family, wherever they are.

<Janus> ...

<Hayley> . o O (Did it work? Maybe if he feels sorry for me he won't pursue the subject.)

<Janus> Always these little games.

  • Hayley looks up sharply at Janus.

<Hayley> Games?

<Hayley> Yes, I suppose they are. But you play them too, and your mother is all time champion of mind games.

  • Janus looks slightly disgusted.

<Janus> Don't speak about my mother!

  • Janus says hotly.
  • Hayley smiles in a conniving fashion, but underneath it all she seems to be very uncertain...

<Janus> Listen Hayley, regardless of whatever unspeakable thing that you can't tell me...

<Janus> I can't allow you to just wander off.

  • Hayley changes her expression again, slightly more pleasant.

<Janus> You are my responsibility...

<Hayley> If you're worried about me, don't be.

<Hayley> I'm quite capable of taking care of myself. Quite.

  • Hayley mimics Diamond.
  • Janus 's beautiful features twist in fury and he raises a hand to slap Hayley...
  • Hayley cringes and runs off a distance.

<Hayley> Don't touch me!

<Hayley> Don't fucking touch me!

  • Hayley screams.

<Janus> You are nothing but a child who needs ... discipline!!

  • Janus yells in frustration.

<Hayley> I am not Dianna.

<Hayley> (How does she know about Dianna? o_O )

<Hayley> I am trying to protect you.

<Janus> *Dianna* had better--

<Hayley> Don't touch me. Go away and leave me alone!

<Janus> How do you know about Dianna?

<Hayley> I know about her.

<Hayley> I know about a lot of things.

  • Hayley 's face twists in agony.

<Janus> That was almost a century ago. Who told you?

<Hayley> 10 000 years of things!

  • Janus approaches her warily.

<Hayley> DON'T TOUCH ME!

<Janus> ...

  • Hayley screams and moves away a bit further.

<Janus> What is going on?

  • Janus comes closer.
  • Hayley flares into a Starbody.

<Hayley> DON'T!

  • Janus jumps back, instinctively throws up his hands...

<Hayley> (Starbody - Uh, where'd she learn /that/?)

<Hayley> Good...

  • Hayley sobs.

<Hayley> Stay there.

<Janus> (To go with your little story...)

  • Janus will throw up the same cantrip...

<Hayley> (Aw... )

<Janus> What has happened to you?

  • Hayley doesn't seem to be hurling fireballs at you.
  • Janus is confused, concerned...

<Hayley> Don't you know?

<Janus> There's no way you could have learned so much...

  • Janus approaches her again.
  • Hayley is still in flames, caressing one arm with the other. She looks decidedly wild.

<Janus> I don't... I don't know.

  • Janus reaches out a hand...

<Hayley> NO!

  • Hayley snarls, jumping back.

<Hayley> Touching me- that's what will bind you to me again.

<Hayley> Go away!

  • Hayley sobs, despairingly.

<Janus> Bind me?

  • Janus laughs hollowly, and drops his hand.

<Hayley> It's no use me FlickerFlashing again... you'll just find me... you have to go yourself, go away!

<Janus> I've already bound myself...

<Janus> I tied my own noose, ninety years ago.

  • Hayley sobs tears of liquid flame.

<Hayley> Why did you cast that spell, Janus?

<Hayley> Why?

<Hayley> It would have been better if you hadn't.

<Hayley> I don't want to hurt you again.

<Janus> There was nothing else *to* do!

<Hayley> You could have grieved!

<Hayley> You could have gotten over it like everyone else!

<Janus> I'm not like everyone else!

<Hayley> No, I guess you're not...

  • Hayley says sadly.

<Hayley> I wish Windrider hadn't told you.

<Janus> Did you think I wouldn't know anyway?

<Hayley> Maybe you wouldn't have come.

<Hayley> Please go. Go back to Morwen.

<Hayley> You deserve her, a Queen, not oathbroken...

<Janus> I don't want to talk about Morwen.

  • Hayley flares up angrily again.

<Hayley> Are you stupid?

  • Janus turns off his Starbody and sits down on a rock.

<Hayley> Don't you realize?

<Hayley> There will be another one!

<Hayley> There always is!

<Hayley> You can't be happy with me! Go AWAY!

<Janus> ...

<Hayley> I'll go away.

<Hayley> I hope you're sensible enough not to follow me.

  • Janus looks like someone punched him in the stomach.

<Janus> I have no choice.

  • Hayley drops her Starbody and gets ready to cast Flicker Flash, but the expression on Janus' face stays her.

<Hayley> Janus...

<Janus> We're the same...

<Janus> No matter who else comes along.

<Janus> You and I...

<Janus> Nobody understands like we do

<Janus> No-one else in the universe.

<Hayley> Don't say such things, please...

<Janus> There's no-one else who knows as we...

<Janus> That love, love is a fist, Hayley.

  • Janus looks up at her.

<Hayley> Janus, they all knew. Every one of them that I doomed. I remember them... I hurt them all, without meaning to. Love is worse than a fist. It is hell, pure agony, for me. I am afraid of it, and I don't want to love ever again.

<Janus> You're wrong...

<Hayley> <w> Am I?

<Hayley> It is torture for me right now, standing so close to you, and forcing myself not to touch you.

  • Hayley backs away step.

<Hayley> I want to die.

<Hayley> But I can't.

  • Hayley shows her wrists to Janus.

<Janus> What did you do??

<Hayley> I used cold iron, even...

  • Hayley looks bewildered.
  • Janus exclaims.

<Hayley> Surely cold iron would do it?

<Hayley> But it didn't.

  • Janus jumps up and grabs her wrists.
  • Hayley is too messed up right just now to maintain her distance... he gets hold of her. There's a bunch of ugly-looking scabby scars running the length of her forearms.

<Janus> Why?

<Janus> WHy?

  • Janus tries to hold back tears, but can't...

<Hayley> So- so I wouldn't have to destroy two more lives...

<Hayley> But it didn't work!

<Hayley> Always two, there's always two. I can't die until I've met the second one!

<Janus> Don't you understand...

<Hayley> And then I'll have destroyed two lives anyway...

<Janus> It's not you.

  • Hayley chokes

<Janus> It's them.

<Janus> *Them*...

  • Janus spits venomously.
  • Hayley is just crying.

<Hayley> Oh, and this crying! I hate it. I never used to cry...

<Janus> ...

<Hayley> I am so weak... you always hated it when I cried, too...

<Janus> Because... I wanted you to be happy...

<Janus> Hayley...

<Janus> Come back to the manor with me.

<Hayley> No...

  • Hayley shakes her head.

<Janus> Tara will take care of you, everything will be fine...

<Hayley> It hurts too much to be close to you.

<Hayley> I just want to be alone.

<Janus> ...

<Janus> But...

<Hayley> It's not anything you did...

  • Janus looks hurt, uncomprehending.

<Hayley> I just- I need to be alone. I have all these thoughts and memories in my head, and they're not mine!

<Hayley> I can't sort them out!

<Janus> I can't leave you...

<Janus> Not like this.

<Janus> You must return with me.

  • Janus says, taking a deep breath to steady himself.

<Janus> I know we've had some... difficulties, but I shall promise not to pressure you in the least...

<Janus> We can resume your lessons whenever you like, and I shall endeavour to straighten out this mess with the Countess.

<Hayley> Janus... I can't go back there, I remember all the nights we spent together... it torments me. Do you know how often I lay in bed at night at your mother's, thinking of you? Everything about her reminded me of you...

  • Hayley looks totally disgusted with herself.

<Janus> I should like to think your memories of our home would be happy...

<Hayley> Oh, they are!

<Hayley> But - being close to you, and not touching... I can't do that.

<Hayley> I just can't.

<Hayley> Look - look at what I am?

<Janus> You are... a lovely young girl.

  • Janus says matter-of-factly.

<Hayley> I'm ten thousand years old, and I'm 150, and I'm 560, and I'm only 14...

<Hayley> I'm Siobhan, I'm Gwen, I'm Marjolaine, I'm Debbie, I'm me!

  • Hayley is seriously flipping out.

<Janus> That is very strange... that you should remember it all this time...

  • Janus says, thoughtfully.

<Janus> But... perhaps I could help you...

<Hayley> I don't though-

  • Hayley says desperately.

<Hayley> I don't remember- WHY.

<Janus> If you come back with me...

<Janus> We could work together to ... straighten it out somehow...

<Hayley> No!

  • Janus says, a little plaintively.

<Hayley> I don't want you to make me forget again. That's what you mean, isn't it?

<Janus> No, that's not what I meant.

<Janus> I mean... why now, after all this time, should you suddenly remember everything that's happened, finally be aware of the curse?

  • Janus speaks rapidly, you can see the little Eiluned hamster running in its wheel.

<Janus> Perhaps... perhaps it is beginning to weaken...

<Hayley> You- you asked me to remember...

  • Janus stops.

<Janus> I asked you to remember me...

  • Hayley digs her hands into her short (remember she cut of most of her hair) curls.

<Hayley> I did, I tried to... thinking of you - I couldn't stop.

<Hayley> The oath- the oath- I broke it before I even swore it, Janus.

<Hayley> She asked me if I loved you and I swore I didn't...

<Hayley> But I didn't know, then... I didn't know.

<Janus> Hayley, please...

<Hayley> What?

<Janus> You don't need to confess anything...

  • Hayley 's eyes are totally wild.

<Janus> Calm down...

  • Hayley does.

<Hayley> Oh. Oh, god, Janus.

  • Hayley says quite sanely.

<Hayley> I can't go back to your place.

<Janus> Why not?

<Hayley> Rachel- Rachel.

<Janus> Rachel is with her grandmother.

<Hayley> I know she is...

<Janus> I don't understand...

<Hayley> I can't be a mother to her, Janus.

<Hayley> That's what she wants from me.

<Janus> I know that.

<Hayley> But I'm only 14! I don't know how to be a mother.

<Janus> I will worry about Rachel.

  • Janus says reassuringly.

<Hayley> (Is he still touching her? He grabbed her arms to see the scars... then what did he do?)

<Janus> (well, you put your hands in your hair, so...)

  • Janus puts a hand on her shoulder.
  • Hayley moves in close to Janus.

<Hayley> Janus... will you hold me? I've wanted to feel your arms around me for so long...

  • Hayley breathes. (Sex Appeal! Sex Appeal!)

<Janus> Hayley, I don't want to... make you uncomfortable...

<Janus> . o O (yikes!)

  • Hayley looks up at Janus with wide eyes.

<Hayley> You won't, oh, you won't...

<Janus> Ah...

<Janus> Well, I guess there's no harm...

  • Janus looks a little flushed.
  • Janus hugs Hayley close...

<Hayley> Oh, Janus...

  • Janus sniffs her hair, without thinking about what he's doing.
  • Hayley slides her arms around his torso, works one hand up under his shirt and slides it along his back.

<Hayley> (She smells like desert sand and salt breeze)

<Janus> Haaa...

  • Janus shivers.

<Janus> What... are you doing?

  • Hayley stops her hand still and looks up at him.
  • Hayley licks her lips.

<Janus> ...

<Hayley> I- don't you like it?

<Janus> I... well..

<Janus> Obviously...

<Janus> !

<Janus> I mean...

<Janus> I think perhaps that we might not want to jump into things... quite so soon...

  • Janus sounds rather flustered, for some reason.

<Hayley> I am sorry.

  • Hayley removes her hand from his shirt.

<Janus> No, no, it's alright, don't apologize...

<Hayley> I'm just a child.

<Janus> I didn't say that...

<Hayley> I want to know what it feels like! I have all these memories... but I've never felt it myself.

<Janus> ...

  • Hayley lowers her eyelids, as if to hide something she's ashamed of.

<Janus> I think I understand...

<Janus> It must be very difficult...

<Janus> But I don't want you to do something out of confusion that you might regret.

  • Janus is rebuilding his composure.
  • Janus is still holding onto her though.

<Janus> . o O (And the same goes for me...)

<Hayley> I can't sleep alone, with you in a room down the hall.

<Hayley> I- sin.

  • Hayley blushes.

<Janus> You what?

  • Janus looks genuinely puzzled.

<Hayley> I- think of you and- sin...

<Janus> ...

<Janus> Oh...

<Janus> Oh, I see...

  • Janus blushes again.

<Janus> Well, I...

<Janus> I suppose that's... flattering...

<Hayley> It makes me feel disgusted with myself. I should be stronger than to give in to temptation, but I can't stop myself. If the priests knew, they'd whip me.

<Janus> . o O (You know, she is a Wilder, really. So what's the difference?)

<Janus> . o O (Shut up!)

<Janus> Well, you don't have to worry about what the priests think.

<Janus> And anyway, I, ah...

<Janus> Well..

<Janus> I think... lots of girls probably...

<Janus> ...

<Hayley> I wasn't like other girls, at the school.

  • Janus gets redder still.

<Hayley> I never did what the priests told me to do.

<Hayley> Am I like them now? I used to be proud of being strong.

<Janus> Those 'priests' were little more than programmers for some sort of sick cult.

<Janus> You're not like anyone else, Hayley.

<Janus> And you *are* strong...

  • Janus runs a hand through her hair, again without really thinking about it.
  • Hayley sighs and shudders.

<Hayley> Please don't do that, if you don't want me to do something back.

<Hayley> Do you still want me at your house? I can't control myself.

<Janus> Yes... I definitely do...

<Hayley> Will you let me go away again if I want to?

<Hayley> I will tell you before I leave.

<Janus> What do you mean?

<Hayley> But being free is very important to me.

<Hayley> If I need to get away for a while.

<Hayley> Will you let me go?

<Janus> Alright...

<Janus> So you'll come back with me?

  • Hayley nods, a bit reluctantly.
  • Janus beams.

<Hayley> I hope you know what you're doing...

<Janus> I certainly do!

<Janus> . o O (I think we might have a chance to beat those accursed Tuatha yet...)

  • Janus hugs her again.

<Janus> . o O ( smells so... earthy... )

<Janus> (stupid Sex Appeal)

  • Hayley melts into him... mmm, she's so soft and curvy... and every move she makes is poetry in motion... so graceful, it makes a person's heart flutter and long to be caressed by those long, slender hands...

<Janus> . o O (meep...)

<Janus> . o O (I feel like Jell-o... What's wrong with me??)

<Hayley> (Sex appeal, ah, what joy. Janus will be fending off droves of men (and some women, too) from Hayley...)

<Janus> . o O (I'm acting crazy...)

<Hayley> (God, Hayley is a /goddess/ of love...! Better not say that out loud though, in case a goddess hears.)

<Janus> (hehe...might end up with snakes for hair)

<Janus> Let's go home, Hayley.

  • Janus murmurs into her hair.

<Hayley> Mmmm...

  • Hayley says into his chest
  • Janus will Flicker-Flash them back onto the grounds of the Manor.

<Hayley> (I hope he knows what he's getting himself into... she is still kind of crazy... plus damn horny, plus in her Unseelie legacy...

<Janus> (Say, the garden)

<Janus> (Hey, that makes two of us)

<Janus> (well... sort of. ;D)

<Hayley> <m> No Sovereign, ok?

<Janus> ...

<Janus> All right, if you don't use Pyretics. The furniture is all so expensive.