Disclaimers: Well, I don't really have to do this with this one. My characters, my story. There might be a certain resemblance to two ladies some of you might recognise but hey ... that could be purely coincidental...<smile>

Subtext: Yup, all the way through the story ... if this bothers you or if you are too young, please don't read this story.

Violence: No, not really. Some fist-fights maybe.

Language: I don't use English in my day to day life so I apologise for any spelling or grammar mistakes. You're welcome to point them out to me, though. <smile> Oh yeah ... I'm using 'proper' English spelling - just thought I let you know...

Setting: There are not a lot of stories out there set in Europe so I thought I might change that. (My being European and all ... <smile>) Set in northern Germany. A town called Lübeck. All the places, streets and bars are real. And it's a beautiful little town....I tried to keep German to a minimum - just some phrases now and then....

A Final Note: For all of you who read "Falling"…………this is going to have a happy end. I had to promise……<smile>

Any comments are welcome: gritjahning@hotmail.com




Fragments - Part 2

by Grit Jahning



Here I am on broken wings

Quiet thoughts unspoken dreams

Here I am alone again

I need her now

To hold my hand

<chorus> She's all

She's all I ever had

She's the air I breathe

She's all

She's all I ever had

It's the way she makes me feel

It's the only thing that's real

It's the way she understands

She's my lover she's my friend

When I look into her eyes

It's the way I feel inside

Like the woman I want to be

She's all I ever need

So much time so much pain

And there's one thing that still remains

The way she cared

The love we shared

And through it all she' always been there

<chorus> She's all

She's all I ever had

In a world so cold so empty

She's all

She's all I ever had

It's the way she makes me feel

It's the only thing that's real

It's the way she understands

She's my lover she's my friend

When I look into her eyes

It's the way I feel inside

Like the woman I want to be

She's all I ever need

*"She's all I Ever Had" written by Robi Rosa, George Noriega, Jon Secada, Luis Gómez Escolar




- 4 -



Pale green eyes were looking at a brightly decorated room. Filled with friends laughing, talking, dancing.

It was a happy sight. The warmth of the light and the small fireplace an effective shield against the cold she knew still lingered outside.

She turned her head towards the window again. Pale green eyes tracing the snow-covered trees, fences and lawns. Cars buried underneath a thick coating of white. It was an immense contrast to the cheery warmth and mood inside the room.

And yet it had something very comforting to it.

Bringing back memories of a strong, warm presence at her back………wrapping long arms around her own small frame while they watched puffy flakes fall.

Remembered a moving form shaking with silent laughter as she tried to catch the flakes with her tongue.

Easily recalling the low rumble.

A small hand reached up and slightly trembling fingers traced the delicate necklace around her neck. She had put it on without second thought. Very aware of the deeper meaning the small bird held. For her and……

A soft sigh steamed the window for a moment.

Liv turned around and grabbed her coat. Stepping out into the backyard. The snow crunching underneath her shoes sounded eerily loud in the quiet the night had laid around her.

She wrapped her arms around herself and tilted her head back. Looking at a clear dark sky shining with a myriad of stars. Twinkling at her.

And if she closed her eyes she could almost hear laughter drifting down from the darkness above her.

Children's carefree giggles.

She opened her eyes. Her breath steaming gently in front of her. And then a soft whisper broke through the silence around her.

"……looks like a rabbit……"


The low voice startled her so much she only barely managed to suppress a small cry.

Because for a moment it sounded like……

She turned around and was face to face with Matthias' concerned face.


They looked at each other for a long silent moment. Memories passing between them. Unspoken as always. And as always they didn't mind the silence.

"Hur har du det?"

The small blonde smiled at Matthias' use of Swedish. He did get it right but he had a very strong accent.

"I'm fine, Matti……just needed a little time alone."

He looked at her. Taking in her features …… that small gentle smile playing around her lips.

The sadness her eyes held.

The pale head turned around again, snuggling deeper into the thick coat. Pointing at something in front of her.

"It's beautiful, isn't it?"

Matthias took a step forward, bringing him closer to Liv's side. He couldn't see her face but he was quite sure he knew what she was thinking about. So he wasn't surprised when the soft voice drifted up to him.

"How did she look?"

Matthias released a slow breath. "Tired." And Ray had looked tired. And strangely lost.

Again silence settled between them. Until he realised that her shoulders were shaking. Without a word he stepped in front of her and wrapped her into a warm embrace. Feeling the small frame shake with silent tears. "……ssshh……it's gonna be okay……." He rocked the small form, whispering soft words of comfort. Knowing that it wasn't his comfort she needed.

Or wanted.

Above them the sky slowly started to cloud over. Hiding twinkling points of light behind pale grey. From somewhere the sounds of cars drifted into the backyard, accompanied by the mixture of voices and music coming from the house.

A carpet of soft noise that settled peacefully around them.


- 5 -




The hot water was steaming gently all around the tall form. Misting the glass of the shower. The water itself hitting the body full blast as it leaned forward - arms stretched out, hands resting against the tiles.

Long dark locks, slick with water, stuck against broad shoulders and back. Curling at the very tip.

Little pearls of water glistened on the skin …… slowly descending down the long frame.

A soft sigh. Barely audible in the noise the water created.

What a day…

Rayne closed her eyes. Hanging her head between her shoulders so the water could hit her neck. Stiff from hours of bending down collecting trash from the party.

She didn't know how long she'd been in the shower - not that she really cared. All she could think of was ……


Never ever had she imagined that the small blonde would see her standing there nor had she expected that Liv would come down to talk to her.

Not that they had said that much.

A small smile played around her lips. Causing small drops of water to fall down. They had stood there. Looking at each other. Smiling.


She could have stayed there forever just looking at those gentle features…those green eyes…that shy little smile.

It had taken all her willpower not to simply lean forward and kiss those lips. Lips she just knew were as soft as silk. And this feeling was almost as real as a memory…

She had known pretty much from their first encounter that she was attracted to the small blonde. No surprise since Liv was……

The smile got bigger.

And for a while she had thought she might even have a chance. But last night had shattered that dream when Liv showed up with a young, good looking man who was very obviously more than just a good friend.

God, it had hurt.

So much.

And yet…

This morning had been almost mind blowing in its new possibilities. Her arm still tingling where Liv had touched her before she had left.

The tall frame straightened and she finished cleaning up. Turning off the water she stepped out into the steamy bathroom. Drying herself and her hair before she headed towards bed.

Pale blue eyes straying toward the windows for a moment. Taking in the clear blue sky. Listening to the soft sounds outside.

She cuddled up in her bed. Laying on her back - her arms folded behind her head. The smile still playing around her lips.

Her mind alive with the memories of the early morning and the possibilities this evening could bring. She and Liv had agreed on meeting at Zum Zölln, a popular place for med students to meet and have a good time. But Sundays were usually much quieter than during the week.

Pale blue eyes closed. And with another soft sigh Rayne fell asleep.

The smile never leaving her face.


The hallway of the ward was eerily silent. Soft footsteps echoing through the air, announcing someone's approach.

It was just a few minutes past one p.m. and the paediatric ward was taking a well deserved break. The children had had their lunch half an hour ago and were now taking an afternoon nap. Giving the nurses some time to catch up on their paperwork and to have some lunch themselves.

A pale head turned back and forth. Taking in bright pictures and stuffed animals forgotten on chairs lining the walls.

Pale green eyes lingering on some pictures obviously painted by a child. Showing a nurse and a doctor.

A soft smile played around red lips. A smile she couldn't shake ever since this morning. Not quite able to hide her excitement about this evening …… thankfully, Torben had mistaken it as her usual self before going to the hospital where, every Sunday, she read stories to the children.

She had a pair of books under her arm, leaving her backpack and outdoor shoes in her locker in the basement.

She enjoyed these afternoons immensely. The storytelling touching something very profound inside her.

Nearing the door that led to the nurse's lounge she peeked around the corner and spotted a dark head. Only a slight grey visible in the dark mane.

It was Magda, the head nurse for the paediatric ward. In her mid-forties and with just the right attitude to handle sick children and grumpy doctors as well as stubborn parents.

Liv's smile got bigger.

She liked Magda a lot. The older woman being an unwavering source of strength through some of her more challenging tests. Always managing to perk her up when she thought she wouldn't make it.

Putting down her books on a nearby table she slowly, and trying to be as quiet as possible, walked up behind the nurse. Barely able to hold back a laugh.

"Don't even think about it, junges Fräulein."

Any remark she might have said stuck in her throat and she coughed in surprise. Looking right into the smiling face of her older friend.

"How do you do that?" Liv shook her head in mock-indignation.

"Honey, you couldn't sneak up on a blind and deaf person, okay?"

Liv blinked at Magda for a silent moment and then a soft lower lip moved forward. Producing a first-class pout.

The older woman laughed and rubbed Liv's upper arms. Liking the young Swede immensely. She tilted her head a little. Taking in the gentle smile on Liv's face and the brighter than usual shine in those remarkable green eyes.

There was a slight flush to her features and Magda couldn't help but smile back. And couldn't help but notice that her young friend looked like someone who was in love.

"So, how are you doing?"

The slight flush turned into a cute blush and Liv dropped her gaze. Fiddling with her shirt.

"I am fine. …… Just, you know …… the usual."

Magda laughed. "Right." She moved her head a little so she could look Liv in the eyes. But before she could prod any more, one of the nurse's lights on the console next to the older woman went on. Blinking rapidly.

Liv turned her head. The smile leaving her face. "That's Ralf's room."


Spring was by now in full force. Fresh green was sprouting on every tree lining the main street in the old city of Lübeck. Attracting early birds and bugs. Bringing a sense of new life to the city.

The sun had been shining all day. Luring people from all over town and from the neighbouring villages into the city park, lining the river that was surrounding the inner part of the city.

Others had made their way up to the beach enjoying the Baltic Sea and a stroll along the beach, probably getting their first ice cream cone of the year.

Pale blue eyes watched in silent bemusement at the people passing by. Taking in their interaction. Laughter.

Sun was setting slowly behind the silhouettes of 18th century buildings and churches. Massive trees telling ancient secrets every time the soft evening breeze was passing through their newly awakened leaves.

It was getting close to seven p.m. and the dark head kept looking around. Searching for a familiar pale head.

She had chosen a table outside the little bar. Ordering a glass of water to pass the time before Liv would show up. Passing up several offers to buy her a drink ever since she sat down.

She had slept for several hours. Feeling very refreshed and as though she could take on the rest of the world. A certain pair of green eyes always on her mind.

Two busses passed by followed by cars and several bicycles. The bicyclists not caring about the pedestrian lights that were located along the main street.

It was half past seven now and the tall frame set up slowly. She swallowed and bit her lower lip for a brief moment. It was getting darker now and the street lights around her went on, followed by the bright illumination in the trees in front of the bar.

She watched them for a moment.

Noticing on the slowly darkening sky the first appearing stars. Quite without conscious thought looking for shapes in them. "…a rabbit…" A soft whisper whisked away on the breeze getting stronger with the rapidly approaching night.


It was almost eleven p.m. when Rayne pulled up in front of her apartment. The sky had turned deep black by now, countless stars illuminating the dark velvet.

She got out of her car and locked it. Her movements slow and strangely defeated.

A small light was lit over the entryway to the apartment house. Highlighting a small, hunched over form sitting on the steps.

Pale blue eyes narrowed as Rayne got closer. Her brows wrinkling in preparation for an attack. But, before she even reached the form, her face changed from alarmed to surprise and confusion.


The dark form moved and the light hit a pale head and teary green eyes.


The muffled sound of a running shower was drifting through the apartment. The soothing smell of herbal tea steaming gently on a small table next to a dark-coloured couch.

The curtains on the windows were closed. Leaving the room in a warm yellow light. Coming from a lamp next to the couch.

Pale eyes looked around. A soft sigh stirring the air for a brief moment. Rayne leaned back, closing her eyes.

Liv had been waiting at her door for almost an hour. Having returned from her volunteer job at the hospital……after one of the little ones - Ralf - went into seizures and died. Teary green eyes had looked at her while the young Swede told her what had happened. The soft voice shaking as she spoke.

Telling the dark-haired woman about the young boy. She had known him since she started her storytelling at the hospital two years ago. Growing very fond of him……smiling as she remembered some of the funny moments they had shared. "His smile was just the brightest you could imagine. You couldn't help but love him." She'd said. Tears running down her face.

It had taken all of Rayne's willpower to stop her hand from reaching out and wiping away the tears. Not sure if the touch would be welcomed.

But her fears had evaporated when the Liv had turned to her and without a word the small frame had curled against her……crying. Holding on to her with almost desperate strength.

All she could do was wrap her arms around her. Rocking her gently. Whispering soft words of comfort.

Yet very aware of the warmth Liv's body emanated, the scent her hair held, the scent of her perfume……just the way the small form fit into her arms.

Pale blue eyes opened.

Just how right it had felt to hold Liv.

The sound of the shower stopped. Followed by soft sounds of someone getting dressed and then the bathroom door opened and Liv stepped out.

Rayne unable to suppress a small smile. Gosh, she's cute.

Liv stood there in the doorframe, wearing a pair of Rayne's sweatpants and T-shirts. Both of them oversized. Swallowing the small blonde.

A small hand reached up and brushed fingers through short wet bangs. Trying to smooth out dishevelled locks. A little, embarrassed smile playing around her lips.


Rayne got up. Reaching for the cup of tea. "Here, I thought you might like this."

The pale head tilted to one side. Green eyes looking at her for a long silent moment. Awakening a warmth in her belly that slowly travelled across her entire body.

"Thank you."

They stood there. Looking at each other. Small smiles on both their faces. The soft scent of tea drifting through the air. The room painted in warm light…casting shadows at the walls.

Muffled sounds of cars and the bark of a dog drifting through the closed curtains. And for a brief moment voices and laughter rose up. Followed by the sounds of car doors closing and car engines being started.

But it was a soft growling sound that brought them out of the small moment of silence they shared.

Dark brows furrowed as Rayne tried to figure out where the sound was coming from when she noticed the blush on Liv's features.

The young blonde cleared her throat. Looking everywhere but at questioning blue eyes. "I haven't eaten anything since noon. …… My body has……um….a way of reminding me of that."

Their eyes met again and then they started laughing. Easing the mood that had surrounded them since Liv had told her about the young boy.

They sat down on the sofa. Liv pulling her legs underneath her. Wrapping her fingers around the cup of tea. Taking a sip of the gently steaming liquid.

Her eyes tracing the smiling features of the tall Brit sitting next to her. Amazed at how blue Rayne's eyes really were.

"How are you feeling?"

The low voice, as always, stirring something inside her that was so familiar……

She took another sip. Swallowing slowly. "I'm feeling better. I…it just…he was so young and I had promised him this particular story for two weeks. He…" She stopped. Biting her lower lip to keep it from quivering.

And felt a warm hand on her knee.


"I'm okay. Really…I'm gonna miss him, though."

The dark head tilted a little. And Liv couldn't help but wonder what those lips would feel like. She actually felt her head heat up with the blush that was creeping up her neck and she couldn't believe she had actually thought that.

And yet…

Those blue eyes were looking at her questioningly and she shook her head. "I'm fine…just…just thinking."

Rayne didn't prod further although she would have liked to know what had caused the soft blush on those gentle features.

"How about I order some pizza?…I'm getting hungry myself."

"Oh sure……that would be great. You didn't eat…" Liv didn't finish. Remembering that they had planned on getting some dinner together this evening. Hurting just thinking about Rayne waiting for her. "I'm sorry."

Those blue eyes softened and the tall frame leaned closer. A small smile playing around her lips - something Liv thought was impossibly cute.

"Well, let's just say you owe me a date now."

And all she could think of to say was: "…okay…"

Which earned her a bright smile and again the thought how eyes could be this blue popped into her mind……closely followed by realising how beautiful Rayne really was.


Rayne shook her head at the TV set. Watching the credits of the movie she and Liv had been watching after ordering the pizza.

The young blonde falling asleep halfway through the movie.

Her deep breathing something the tall Brit thought was absolutely cute. The small frame curling up to her only minutes after she fell asleep.

A long-fingered head reached out and grabbed the remote. Turning off the TV and then sitting back. Debating with herself what to do next. She could wake Liv up.

Sure she could.

Pale blue eyes turned towards the windows. Soft light barely visible through the cloth. It was a few minutes before two a.m. and there was no way she would let the small blonde go home alone.

There was a part in her that didn't want to see Liv leave at all.

That wanted to take her in her arms and just hold her. Knowing that everything would be okay then. That the darkness and emptiness inside would disappear. The feeling of being lost she carried with her for all those years would vanish.

With a soft sigh she got up. Gently lifting Liv's sleeping form into her arms and carrying her to the back of her apartment where her bed was located. Raised from the ground by three steps. Surrounded by a small railing to separate the corner from the rest of the room.

She carefully lowered the small blonde onto the bed. Without conscious thought brushing a few stray blonde locks away.

Marvelling at the softness of the skin she touched.

Liv didn't even so much as stir. She turned around and curled up in the bedding.

Rayne smiled. Taking a seat on the ground next to the bed. Her back resting against the railing bars. Pale eyes never leaving the sleeping form.

Tracing along gentle features so impossibly youthful in sleep. Over the slightly upturned nose. Along pale eyebrows…gently curving cheekbones.

The only light in her apartment was the small lamp next to the couch. Throwing shadows against the walls. The only sounds two sets of breathing that slowly faded into one…


- 6 -


Es ist dein Lächeln

An dem ich mich

Nicht satt sehen kann -

Dein Lächeln,

Mit dem du den Augenblick

So kostbar machen kannst,

Daß ich zu atmen vergesse.

Es ist dein Lächeln,

Das unsagbar Schönes sagt -

Mit einer Anmut,

Die mich sprachlos macht.

(It is your smile

that I can't get enough of -

your smile,

that turns a moment

into something so precious

I forget to breathe

It is your smile

That speaks of unspeakable beauty -

With a grace

That leaves me speechless)

Pale green eyes traced over the words on the piece of paper. One small hand reaching out and running along the lines of words.

A pencil lifted and white teeth started biting the wood.

Liv released a slow breath.

It had been forever since she had written a poem. Let alone one with so much meaning. It had come to her all of a sudden. Remembering this morning.

Waking up in Rayne's apartment. Curled up in the tall woman's bed and instead of feeling embarrassed she had felt…


She smiled. Remembering finding the older woman deeply asleep next to the bed.

In, Liv was sure, an absolutely uncomfortable position against the wooden railing.

It had given her an opportunity to study Rayne's features. Marvelling at those high cheekbones. And she had found herself reaching out. Tracing a finger ever so gently along one cheek.

And had looked straight into a pair of sleepy pale blue eyes…

A poke into her side brought her back from her musing and she turned her head. Looking at Evelyn with a raised eyebrow.


Her friend simply shook her head and pointed towards the front of the lecture hall they were sitting in.

Their professor was at the moment busily writing and gesturing on the black board.

"I thought you might want to write that down……where were you anyway?"

Liv smiled and dropped her gaze. Covering the poem with a new sheet of paper. Starting to write down what Professor Braun was writing on the black board.

Eph frowned and tilted her head. Studying her friend more closely. She knew that Liv hadn't spend the night home but when she had questioned her, the young blonde had mumbled something about needing some time by herself.

She had heard about Ralf and actually had expected that Liv would come to her to talk about it but…

"You sure you're okay?"

Those green eyes met hers - causing the redhead to swallow. And then a small warm hand came to rest on her arm. Squeezing it gently.

"I'm fine, Eph. Really."

Evelyn cleared her throat and nodded. "Good…um…I…um…okay."

She turned her head forward again not quite able to believe that she was actually blushing.

Liv, in the meantime, had already turned her thoughts back to a certain tall, dark-haired woman.

Even more than usually looking forward to going to work tonight. But also knowing that Torben and she had to talk sooner or later.

Because what ever was happening between Rayne and her……and god, was there ever something happening between them……she wanted to be honest and fair about it. With Torben and Rayne.

She smiled again and resting her chin on her hand turned her attention to her professor eagerly talking about physics. And how important and beautiful this science really was…


If there was one way to tell Rayne's mood it was the way she usually reacted to people trying to lead a conversation with her.

Short grunts and one-syllable answers always meant: Back off! And usually this was how she behaved around a lot of people, never being very comfortable in large groups.

But tonight…

Matthias sat behind the bar counter unbelievingly staring at his best friend easily chatting away with one of their customers. Joking with their staff.

She had arrived two hours ago to get some paperwork out of the way and to help him get the orders for the next week ready.

She actually had been humming when she had entered the bar.

Greeting him with a smile.

He shook his head. Wishing he could meet whoever was responsible for this very obvious change in his friend. Although he had a hunch what…or more accurately…who was responsible for it.

Just then the door behind him (entry and exit for the bar personnel) opened and a very familiar pale head poked through. Smiling at him.

"Hey Liv……how are you doing?"

"I'm fine, Matthias. How about you?"

She dropped a small bag next to him and reached for a few empty and dirty glasses sitting on the counter.

"Oh…couldn't be better." He smiled and rubbed her back. Motioning to the crowd in front of them.

"It's a wild night."

She laughed. "I bet you love every moment of it."

He joined her laughter. "Yup, guilty as charged."

A low rumble sounded up behind him but he didn't need to hear the sound to know who was standing behind him. The way those green eyes in front of him suddenly lit up and the broadening smile already announced Rayne's approach.

He turned. Just to see a similar expression on the tall Brit's face. Oh man, you got it bad.

"Hi Liv."

"Hi Rayne."

Both women were smiling at each other and Matthias rolled his eyes. Mumbling an excuse he knew none of them heard he slipped out from behind the counter and headed towards some friends he had spotted in the back of the bar.

"You made it to the University all right?"

"Oh yeah…just fine……um…how's the back?"

"Oh." Unconsciously Rayne reached up to touch the small of her back. "Better. I took a long shower and did some workout."

"That's good…you …" Someone calling for service interrupted whatever the small blonde was about to say. She sighed. But Rayne smiled and touched her shoulder. Leaving her hand there a few seconds longer than necessary.

The warmth of her skin easily penetrating the shirt Liv was wearing.

"You go ahead. I'll be here later."

She almost…almost…asked if this was a promise. But she didn't and with a last smile towards Rayne she headed to the man who had called for her.

Followed by alert pale eyes. Tracing down the moving small frame. Noticing the small swagger to those hips.

Rayne smiled and turned away. Trying to calm her suddenly faster beating heart.


- 7 -

The tall form sat on the dark leather couch. Large hands holding a T-shirt. Moving back and forth between her fingers.

A soft sigh.

And then the dark head buried itself into the cloth. Detecting a very familiar scent - bringing a big smile to the chiselled features.

Pale eyes closed.

Savouring the soft scent for a small eternity.

Imprinting it into her mind. Right next to the memories of how soft Liv's skin was. And the shade of those green eyes.

Blue eyes opened.

Dropping to the colourful flyer laying on the table announcing a special exhibition at the Botanical Gardens in Hamburg.

She had already asked Liv if she'd like to come with her. Getting a bright smile and sparkling green eyes as an answer.

Another soft sigh. Pale eyes becoming dreamy as she recalled Liv's features. The small blonde sound asleep…her face so peaceful…

A deep ringing sound brought her out of her reverie. It took her a moment to realise that someone was at her door.

She got up and opened the door.

"Hi Ray."

A sigh and the tall frame stepped away from the door. Letting her friend in.

"What do you want, Matthias?" Her voice a little more gruff than she actually meant to sound.

But the tall German knew his friend and simply smiled, clapping Rayne on her back while passing her.

"Hey…I'm just here to visit a friend."

Pale eyes rolled and a dark brow rose.

"All right…..so maybe that's not the only reason I'm here." He looked around the apartment for a moment. Noticing a T-shirt and a pair of sweatpants on the back of the couch. As well as noting the fact that Ray's bed hadn't been made either.

A fact that was rather peculiar because Ray was rather insistent if it came to cleaning up and keeping her room tidy. He had learned that lesson during the time they shared a flat while at college.

Mmh….interesting…..A small smile played around his lips as he sat down, watching the tall frame getting something to drink for the both of them.

His gaze dropping to the small table. Pale brows raising as he saw the flyer announcing the Exotic Birds Exhibition in Hamburg.

He leaned back against the back of the couch. Crossing his legs…putting a rather smug expression on his face. But his eyes were sparkling with gentle amusement.

"So…any plans for the weekend?"

Pale blue eyes narrowed at him. But he lifted his brows in an attempt at looking innocent. Failing miserably.

"Yes." A deep rumble.


Two pairs of blue eyes were staring at each other until he finally gave in and started laughing. Happy beyond words for his friend. He couldn't remember the last time Rayne had even dated anyone. But remembering one conversation between them years ago:

They had had a few drinks and had been sitting at the beach during a very hot summer night. Looking up at the sky, listing to music. Just enjoying each other's company. He didn't remember why he had asked but he had turned to her and taking another sip from his beer asked his friend: "Do you believe in finding your one true love?"

He didn't know what he had expected. Laughter…a gentle poke in the side for such a stupid question but instead the dark head had turned his way.

Those blue eyes looking at him for a long silent moment. The soft light of the moon above making them almost shine with a light of their own.

And then Ray had sighed. "Sometimes I feel like I already knew what it means to find this one special person. You know……someone you just know will fit. Right here…"

She had tapped her chest. Again turning towards the sea. Watching waves crush against the rocks reaching into the water. White foam swaying gently on top of the waves.

"And also knowing what it means to lose it. The hurt and pain it brings."

He had squinted into the dark to make out her face but not seeing more than her profile. Seeming far away...lost...

"And I don't know if I really want to go through it again."

Again silence had fallen between them. He had tried to make sense out of her words. Ray simply stared out into the dark. Her tall frame almost blending into it. As if she belonged with it…

He had felt a shiver running down his spine. For one single second feeling something like fear towards his friend. It had passed as quickly as it had come but still it had confused him. Afterwards he had blamed it on the beer. But to this day he hadn't forgotten the look on his friend's face.

Always wondering how one soul could hold so much pain…

And now looking at those features and actually seeing her smile and those blue eyes sparkling with glee and happiness.

He actually felt like giving her a hug and saying: Finally, Ray. Finally you found someone who can make the pain stop.

His laughter finally died down and he took a sip from his glass of orange juice. His eyes watching Rayne intently.

"So, you're going by yourself?" He pointed at the flyer. And he was almost convinced to see something like a blush creeping up those chiselled features.

"No." Another deep rumble. But her eyes were softening and he saw the smile playing around her lips. Rayne not quite able to hold it back.

"Mmh……Someone I know?"

"Liv." A soft whisper. The smile finally breaking through. Amazing him with the gentleness it held.

He leaned forward and tapped her knee. Waiting until those blue eyes met his gaze. The dark head tilting to one side in question.

"I'm happy for you."

This time the blush was more noticeable. And she cleared her throat. Very obviously uncomfortable with the turn of their conversation.

"She's a friend. ….. She would like to see the exhibition and since I had a ticket to spare…it was……that's all there is to it……"


He held her gaze. Knowing that if she would let him in on her feelings this was really serious. He had seen the way she looked at the young blonde every time she thought nobody was watching. He had seen the look her eyes held.

And also noticing that Liv very obviously felt the same towards the tall Brit. Her smile always getting a little brighter when the dark-haired woman was around.

"Okay……I like her…a lot……I… She sighed in frustration and got up. Walking over to the window. Her eyes tracing the passing traffic. Along the sidewalks crowded with late afternoon shoppers. I'm falling in love and I am scared senseless because she fits. It's as simple as that. She fits.

A couple of pigeons flew by…their wings flapping wildly as they came to rest on her window sill. The birds cooing in obvious contentment.

"I want to do it right this time." Her words were only a whisper but Matthias caught them. Not sure what she meant. But they held a meaning to them that seemed to be far beyond anything they had been talking about right now.

Something almost ancient…

He got up as well and came to a halt beside her. Looking at her profile. Noticing the small sad smile on her face but also seeing the determination in her pale eyes.

"It's going to be okay. You'll see."

The dark head turned his way. Her eyes softening. "Thanks."

They turned back towards the window. Content to simply look outside…enjoying the slowly setting sun. Painting the buildings lining the street in a soft orange.


"Just like that?"


Liv reached out and took hold of his hand. Keeping him from jumping up. The tall blonde man very obviously not expecting to hear his girlfriend telling him that it was over.

"But Liv…if it's something I said or did……I…I…"

A small hand raised up and brushed through short blonde locks as Liv tried to find the right words to explain what was happening to her. The feelings, even the briefest look from those blue eyes, awoke inside her.

"It isn't anything you did, Torben. I……Didn't you notice that things between us had changed?"

The young man looked at her for a long silent moment. His mind getting through the last few weeks and how distant Liv had become. She had started to avoid his physical attention. They hadn't made love in almost a month…and yes, he had noticed that something had changed.

Having seen the dark form standing next to a car down at the street one morning. Liv slowly walking up to her. Had seen them talking. The smile on Liv's face.

It had been a long time since she smiled at him like that.

His shoulders slowly, slowly dropping in an almost defeated gesture. "So, you met someone else."


He looked up into those green eyes. He loved her. He never had any doubts about that. From the first time they had met at her parents' house. His parents actually being close friends of her parents and so it had seemed almost natural for them to start dating. Their parents very pleased with that.

And it had seemed to be perfect. And yet…

There were times when he caught her simply staring into nothingness…her eyes holding an expression……she had seemed almost lost.

And yes…there had been something missing. He could never put a finger on this feeling but it had started to get more noticeable during the last few weeks.

And seeing Liv with the tall Brit who owned the bar Liv was working in…she seemed happy. Her face glowing and her eyes….he swallowed…those eyes almost sparkling with something so deep…

He released a slow breath.

"So that's it, huh?"

"Torben…" A soft plea.

His blond head shook and he lifted his hands in a apologising gesture. "I know…I…it just blindsided me, I guess." He took her hand and squeezed it. "I don't want you to get hurt."

She smiled. One small hand reaching up to cup his cheek. Her thumb caressing his skin ever so softly. "I won't get hurt. She would never let that happen."

Liv didn't know where she took this certainty but she just knew that Rayne would never hurt her.

Torben swallowed and nodded. He laughed weakly. "Don't expect me to like her, okay?"

The small warm hand on his face keeping up the gentle caress.

He turned his face and placed a soft kiss on her palm. Lingering for a moment. "Promise me to be happy, Liv."

Another smile.

"I will be happy, Torben."

He sighed and cleared his throat. It hurt but he knew that he could never do anything to hurt her. And letting her go was probably the hardest thing he had ever done. But something inside him told him that it was the right thing to do.

He looked at her with an almost shy expression on his face…making him look like a little boy.

"Can I get a hug?"

Liv didn't even answer this question but simply moved closer and wrapped her arms around him.

Feeling him return the embrace. Holding on to him for a long, silent moment. When they finally let go he had tears in his eyes…whipping them away with an embarrassed gesture. He got up and released another slow breath.

"If you ever need a shoulder to lean on……you know where I live." A small smile. And Liv nodded. "She better not hurt you, Liv."

With this he left. Pale green eyes following him.


- 8 -


Mist was hanging low in the trees. Tickling the first rays of the sun slowly appearing behind the silhouettes of the city.

Blurring the outlines of buildings and trees. Turning people and cars into mystic, moving shadows bearing ancient secrets.

The mist was rolling along walls - ever so slowly diffused by the sun.

It was cold.

A tall frame snuggling closer into a light jacket stepped back into the booth at the bus stop. A hand freeing long, dark locks from the collar. Running fingers through the thick mane to loosen it up a little.

Feeling the dampness of the mist lingering in the hair.

Rayne released a slow breath - watching it steam in front of her ever so lightly.

There were only two other people standing next to her at the bus stop. A young man snuggled up into his thick sweatshirt sat on one of the benches. His hair dishevelled and his face still showing the drowsiness of someone who just woke up.

His eyes closing now and then. His head slowly dropping to his chest. And every time that happened he'd jerked up. Blinking at them with an embarrassed little smile.

Next to him sat an old woman who carried a little dog in her bag. His small fury head peeking out - large dark eyes looking around.

Rayne smiled and turned pale blue eyes towards the direction the bus was supposed to come from. Stopping in the surrounding villages first before starting it's round in Lübeck.

The mist made it difficult to see anything and yet it carried sounds amazingly far. She was actually able to make out sounds from the small airport the city had.

She sniffed. Burying her hands into the pockets of her jeans.

Making sure her keys were still there as well as some change she would need to pay for her bus ticket.

Liv and she had decided against taking a car to Hamburg. It was the weekend and everybody and their brothers would be in the big city. Getting around with a car and finding a parking place would be nerve-wracking.

Pale eyes closed for a moment.

She hadn't got a lot of sleep last night. Her stomach tingling with countless butterflies. She had sat on her couch in the dark apartment watching shadows on her walls. Painted there by passing cars and street lights.

Funny how every single one of those shadows had formed itself into an image of Liv's gentle features…

Pale eyes opened.

Just in time to see the bus arrive. It's doors opening with a soft hiss. It was almost empty since it was still very early in the morning. She paid for her ticket and took a seat next to the window. Putting her elbow on the narrow window frame she rested her chin in her palm.

Blue eyes idly watching the scenery passing by. Buildings…trees…cars…people…

The bus slowly filled up the closer they got to the train station. Most of the passengers still looking very tired …… some might have just got up to go to work. Others just got off from work - finally heading home.

Minutes later they arrived at the bus station right next to the Bahnhof.

Rayne stretched her long frame and walked slowly towards the narrow passage that led to the train station. As always two young men were sitting there, asking for some spare change. Their dog sleeping nearby on a piece of cardboard to fight of the morning chill.

She dropped a few coins into the small box placed in front of them, then headed towards the main building where the ticket counter, a few small shops, and the food booths were located.


I should have brought a thicker shirt. This thought entered Liv's mind for about the hundredth time since having left her flat to head for the train station.

She had her arms crossed in front of her chest. Trying to warm up a little.

It had been two days since Rayne had invited her to the exhibition that was taking place in the Botanical Gardens of the University of Hamburg. For all she cared they could have watched cars passing by……as long as she was with Rayne nothing else mattered.

It was a strange feeling of being…

Pale brows furrowed in thought.

Of being comfortable. Of feeling safe.

Green eyes looked around as Liv released a slow breath. Yes, she did feel safe with the taller woman. It was a strong feeling of knowing that nothing would happen to her when she was with Rayne.

She didn't know where she took the certainty from but …… one look at those pale blue eyes and it was like coming home.

Like finally - finally coming home.

And with this thought, an unconscious, incredibly gentle smile worked its way onto her face.

And anyone looking would have been amazed at the way her face lit up. Those green eyes sparkling with an inner shine……

It stopped pale blue eyes short in their tracks as Rayne entered the hall.


She found the small form at once.

Standing next to a magazine store. Wrapped into a forest green sweater and blue jeans. The lights from overhead hitting the pale head in just the right angle to bring out soft red highlights.

She saw the soft smile playing around those lips.

And Rayne felt the world stop for one small, eternal moment.

And for this small moment there was only Liv and her. No people walking around them, no blurred voices coming from loudspeakers - echoing through the building.

Just them.

And a soft breeze. And the smell of fresh grass. And, strange enough, the sounds of birds.

It only lasted for a very brief moment. But long enough for her to recognise the feeling inside her. The warmth that crept through her body just by looking at the small blonde.

To know that she was totally and helplessly in love with the small blonde.

And somehow this revelation wasn't as scary as she might have thought. Actually……the dark head tilted to one side. Pale eyes tracing along the slim frame.

Actually, it took away a heavy load from her soul she wasn't even aware of. Opening it to new possibilities.

And with that, a bright smile spread across those chiselled features. Mirrored on gentle features across from her.


- 9 -


The train was rattling softly beneath them. A steady, strangely comforting sound. Trees, buildings, people - rushing past the window as blurred shadows.

They had chosen to take one of the older train routes. They would stop in every small village on the way to Hamburg and it would take them longer than with the IC but they didn't care.


Pale eyes turned back to the window.

Rayne loved it. It had a certain romantic feel to it. To sit in a train with the one you love....A gentle smile played around her lips.

At the moment, they were sitting in one of the compartments that could seat up to six people, but luckily, they were alone.

Able to just enjoy each other's company.

Pale eyes turned away from the window and the scenery showing. Wide green fields...cattle...small village that appeared and vanished just as fast.

Liv had taken a seat opposite the tall frame and was presently snuggled up into her sweater.

Peacefully asleep.

Blue eyes twinkled in gentle amusement. Enjoying the sight immensely.

The young blonde had fallen asleep almost instantly after they had got on the train. Lasting all of five minutes.

Something Rayne thought was endearingly cute.

So now she was left in silence. Except for the soft rhythm of the moving train and the steady, deep breathing coming from the small blonde. She would have loved to have talked with Liv.....the small blonde's gentle voice coloured by a soft accent when speaking English.

Red lips formed into an affectionate smile. Yeah.

The compartment door opened and the Schaffner entered. Asking for their tickets. Liv peacefully sleeping through the brief interruption.

The young man left and Rayne leaned back in her seat.

Pale eyes again looking out of the window but always returning to the small, sleeping form. Tracing along those gentle features.

Almost - almost reaching out to touch them. Brushing away stray pale locks.



'I can't believe you did that!"

A deep chuckle.

"How could you let me fall asleep?!"

A pale head dropped in embarrassment. But a soft blush very obvious - slowly creeping up a cute pair of ears. Tickling their tips.

Rayne had to bite her lower lip to keep from laughing. Liv impossibly cute in her indignation.

"You were tired.....it is okay. I didn't mind." And bit her lip for an entirely different reason.

Suddenly face to face with curious green eyes.

"Oh yes?"

A small teasing smile playing around those lips. The pale head tilting to one side. It did take some working but Rayne managed to keep the blush from showing.

She cleared her throat and pointed ahead of them. Desperately trying to change the topic. Gracefully stepping around a pair of elderly women she said: "The underground station is this way. It will only take a few minutes and we can walk the rest of the way."

Heard the soft laughter next to her.

And felt the warmth of Liv's hand rubbing her back in a brief and yet gentle touch. Causing her to swallow against a suddenly dry throat.


The air was humid.

That was the first thing she noticed. Heavy with a strange scent that seemed the float through the large room.

The foliage was thick - a deep, fresh green. Sounds of dropping water drifted through the quiet that surrounded them. And from somewhere, hidden between the leaves and the beautifully coloured blossoms, the sounds of wings and a soft chirping.

Green eyes constantly looking around, trying to locate the small creatures.

They had been standing in line for almost fifteen minutes to get into the Gardens. Liv was glad they had found a rather secluded spot in one of the huge areas. She had quickly noticed that Rayne had seemed very uncomfortable in being so close to so many people.

They had walked through the Japanese Garden in comfortable silence. Simply taking in the sights around them. Spotting countless butterflies chasing around the flowers on display.

She took a deep breath. Tasting the heavy, humid air in the back of her throat.

Closing her eyes she slowly started turning around. Just taking in the sounds and atmosphere surrounding her.

Very aware of the quiet form next to her.

Catching a faint trace of Rayne's perfume.

"It is beautiful, isn't it."

The deep voice broke as a whisper through the quiet around them. Reaching right deep into a part of her soul. Tickling it in recognition.

Keeping her eyes closed, the small blonde smiled and nodded. Feeling a featherlight touch on her face. Caressing her face ever so gently.

She swallowed and opened her eyes.

Running straight into a set of deep blue eyes.

Rayne couldn't stand it anymore. Seeing Liv stand there. The soft smile on her face. Her eyes closed.

She reached out and touched her face. Caressing the soft skin she found there. Softly.....

Moving her fingers down the soft cheek. Lingering on those lips for a small eternity. Swallowing she looked up.

Meeting green eyes in a silent question.

Her heartbeat doubling its speed when she felt Liv lean into the touch. Again, closing those green eyes in an equally silent answer.

She leaned forward. Slowly. Hesitantly....

Her breathing quickening. Her face only inches away from Liv's.

The soft scent that always surrounded the small blonde was almost palpable. Intensified by the heavy air, blending in with the scents around them.

The first touch was only their lips meeting for a fleeting moment.

Rayne lifted a hand up and cupped Liv's cheek. Again touching her lips to hers she felt the soft trembling in them. Slowly.....ever so slowly she increased the kiss.

Feeling the small frame move closer to her own body.

Small hands reaching out to touch her. Coming to rest against her belly. Holding on to her shirt in an almost desperate grip.

Liv's lips separated and their tongues touched.

Her insides exploding into warmth and a trembling shiver.

It seemed like an eternity when they finally had to come up for air. Pale eyes opening. Swallowing as she saw those gentle features.

A soft flush very obvious. Those green eyes still closed and a soft smile playing around those.....oh, so soft lips.

They simply looked at each other.

Not saying a word. Only smiling and yet sharing more than words could possibly ever express.

And suddenly......coming out from between leaves and blossoms - hummingbirds appeared. Zipping around them. Their colourful feathers a blur passing them.

Rayne took a deep breath. Just watching Liv utter a sound of deep delight as those small creatures hovered before her face. Their small bodies standing still in the air. Their wings all but moving air.

"Look at them!"

Liv's voice alive with joy as she turned around to follow the birds flight.

"I do." A deep rumble.

The pale head turning to look at her. A soft blush creeping up Liv's cheek and she was about to drop her head when a large hand cupped her cheek.

Locking their gazes.

"And I've never seen anything so beautiful." Quiet. Certain.

Liv swallowed. And closing her eyes she leaned into the soft touch. Wishing this moment would never end.

Her heart jumping as she felt a pair of strong arms close around her. A steady, rhythmic heartbeat suddenly sounding very close to her ear. A heartbeat that sped up even as she settled into the gentle embrace.

Losing herself...

A soft touch on the top of her head and the world around her disappeared.

Nothing matter but the warm frame she was leaning against. She turned her face into Rayne's chest. Taking a deep breath filled with the scent of the taller woman. Knowing that there was no safer place than here.

Standing in the middle of exotic plants and flowers. Surrounded by countless colourful, small birds. Feeling their wings brush past her.

She exhaled. Knowing that Rayne would feel the warmth of her breath through her shirt....and unable to stop the tears that suddenly started.

Rayne felt the small frame melt into her own body and she closed her eyes. Leaning her face against the pale head, she started rocking the slim form in her arms.

Knowing that she finally.....finally had met her destiny.

And that she would never let go again.

Small, dark eyes looked on. Small form buzzing around the tall forms hugging each other so tightly that not even a breeze could have passed between them.

The small birds chasing each other around the humans.

Now and then touching them and yet, very obviously, not disturbing them. And for a brief moment, it seemed as if they smiled at the sight before them.....




Continued in part 3


The poem "Dein Lächeln" (Your Smile) has been written by Hans Kruppa. He has written some beautiful poems!! So if you have the chance to read them, please do so!! (I don't know if he has been translated into English……but for all of you that can read German, all I'm gonna say is: Go get his poetry!!!.....<smile>...........See you in the next part!)

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