Disclaimer: Some of the characters mentioned in this piece of fiction don't belong to me. So, yes, I will put them back where they belong. One of these days....I will....really.... J
Violence: Yes. And please be aware that it will be rather graphic, too.
Subtext: Certainly. Really, is there anything else?
A Final Note: This could be considered an alternative ending to my first story ”Falling”. It isn’t, really, but the idea came from that story. Sounds confusing, doesn’t it? ( Anyway... It is a rather dark piece and will contain scenes of emotional as well as physical violence. Please consider yourself warned!
I know it took forever for this part to be posted but life had been quiet busy and I simply didn't have the time to write…and I had got to a point where my muses refused to help, too. J
But here it is…part 2 of "Silence"!
The muses are talking again and I hope to finish the story this year. So thank you for being this patient with me!!
By the way, some may have noticed that my website has been offline for some time now…I am not sure when or if I will put up one again but I will keep you informed.
Well then – enjoy!
Any comments on the story are welcome! email@example.com
Silence – Part 2
by Grit Jahning
Long awaited darkness falls
Casting shadows on the walls
In the twilight hour
I am alone
Sitting near the fireplace
Dying embers warm my face
In this peaceful solitude
All the outside world subdued
Everything comes back
To me again
In the gloom
Like an angel passing through
Half awake and half in dreams
Seeing long forgotten scenes
So the present runs
Into the past
Now and then become entwined
Playing games within my mind
Like the embers as they die
Love was one prolonged good-bye
And it all comes
Back to me tonight
In the gloom
Like an angel passing through
I close my eyes
And my twilight
Images go by
All too soon
Like an angel passing through
"Like an Angel passing through my room"
written by Benny Anderson, Björn Ulvaeus
- 6 -
Funny, how all dungeons tended to smell like that. Mould. Old, cold blood.
Stepping around a pile of smelly something, she grimaced in disdain. Well, among other things. By her side Spyros, her second in command, chuckled and called for one of the guards standing at attention.
He had met her at the stairs leading down to the dungeon and as always she wondered why she had picked him in the first place. His smooth, ridiculously gentle voice stirred the heavy silence around them and running a hand through her hair, she exhaled slowly.
He was one damn good spy for one thing – not to mention one of the best assassins she'd ever met. And one of the very few she trusted.
He was small. Barely reaching up to her shoulders and the heavy tunic he wore did nothing to hide his growing belly. His hair was a deep red and his deep green eyes were constantly smiling. Meeting him no one would consider him a threat.
An easy picking, yes. A murderer? No.
She once had asked him if he enjoyed his work.
He had looked at her for a long, silent moment and for a brief second any humour had left his expression – but then he had chuckled and shrugged. Saying that this was as good a job as any.
And had slit the throat of a deserter they had caught a few moments before.
She watched him as he fiddled with the keys and unlocked one of the heavy doors leading to one of the cells.
A small, amused smirk tugging at her lips. And she knew that he had a bit of a crush on Gabrielle and therefore presented a welcome aim for some good-natured ribbing.
"All right...." The door opened with a tired groan. Hitting them with a gust of stale air filled with the scent of fear and dirty human bodies. "I am pretty sure they're Romans. Their dialect is almost perfect but one just needs to look at them to know they're no Greeks." He turned and smirked at her. "So I guessed you might like to take a look at them."
A dark brow lifted.
He shrugged and entered the cell. His hand almost unconsciously coming to rest against his sword as he scanned the narrow room.
Xena allowed her eyes to adjust to the twilight and then turned them on the two men huddled against the back wall.
She almost laughed out loud.
No, they certainly weren't Greek but their disguise had obviously been good enough to make it past the border. She frowned and made a mental note to give new orders to the border controls.
The two men got up and looked at her with such open disdain – considering their current situation she admired their bravery.
It would make their death a slow and painful one but she admired it nonetheless.
Smiling, she took another step forward. "Well...I suppose that you are going to tell me that this is a misunderstanding, right? That you are innocent citizens of this great city. Right?"
The older of the men snorted and then spat at her.
Mmh. Now, she knew exactly how he was going to die. Her smile broadened and she stepped closer. Close enough to touch and reaching out she caressed his dirty, bloodied face.
"Now, now...." She leaned closer still. "I see that Caesar has finally found some decent assassins. Too bad you weren't smart enough to choose the right side."
The man straightened and in his eyes she saw pure hatred. "I'm not telling you anything!"
She chuckled and shook her head in a slow, pitying gesture. "Oh but you will."
Behind her Spyros joined her laughter and then stepped forward.
"Take a deep breath..."
Sunlight dancing along pale skin. Highlighting faded traces of scars.
Long, blonde hair pulled together in a loose tail moved as the small frame breathed in again.
An old man bit his lower lip thoughtfully as he listened to the faint sounds before him. Turning a little, he met Berra's questioning gaze and shrugged in a faint gesture. "Good, good....get dressed again."
Green eyes met his eyes and he knew that there were no words necessary. A small smile and Gabrielle reached for the shirt Berra handed her.
"Not better, is it?"
"No. There are still those raspy sounds and..." Fiddling with his instruments for a moment he avoided her eyes. "And now there is...." He looked up. "There is a somewhat wet sound, as well. And your heart doesn't sound so good, either. Have you been taking the herbs I gave you?"
Gabrielle nodded. "Yes....but they make me very sleepy and dizzy. I don't like that."
"Oh...fine, let me see what I can find. I know a book by a healer from the East. Maybe I can find something that will help. How are your legs?"
A broader smile. "Still can't walk without help but they aren't hurting me as often as they used to. The salve helps."
He nodded. "Good. That's good.....anything else?"
Gabrielle moved back against the headboard of the bed and pulled a blanket tightly around herself. "No. I'm...." Green eyes losing themselves somewhere beyond the confines of the room. "...fine."
Another, hesitant nod and the healer put his instruments away and followed Berra out of the room. Coming to a halt in the hall. Waiting for her to close the door.
It was difficult to name the expression on Berra's face. Too many emotions shifting into each other just to be replaced by a resigned smile. "I know."
The healer exhaled slowly. "Should I....?" He didn't finish the sentence but there really wasn't any need to do so.
"No. And besides...." She finally met his eyes. Silent, hidden tears catching sparkling highlights from the torches. "I think, she knows."
Whispers of wind brushing through the windows.
"She'll go mad."
Eyes dulled by age closed for a long, painful moment. "I know."
It's interesting how easily skin separates from flesh.
The small room they had brought the two spies to, echoed with hoarse, shrieking screams. Torches flickering in uncaring abandon.
"Now....we were talking about your mission."
She stopped her cutting motion and leaned closer to look at the man strapped to a worn wooden table. Out of his view she grabbed an edge of loose skin. Slippery from the amount of blood coating the table and her hands.
He was much more stubborn than she had expected but that also meant that he presented a very interesting toy. His face was a grimace of agony and it took a little while until his eyes focused on her.
"I....I'm not....not telling you..."
A brief, strong flick of her hand and she felt the piece of skin let go of the flesh. A loud, sucking sound accompanying the motion.
His voice broke after the first shriek.
"Do I really need to ask again?"
She didn’t have to.
There was only so much one was willing to endure in the name of loyalty. This one had lasted a lot longer than anyone before but eventually they all surrendered. Usually because they thought it would save their lives.
Smirking, she straightened and met Spyros gaze.
Mmh...so Caesar was planning an attack on Athens. She pursed her lips thoughtfully as she cut the man's throat. Her eyes sparkling with icy joy. Oh, this sounded like fun.
"Get rid of them." A pause as a thought occurred to her. "Wait...I think, we need to send Caesar a little gift."
- 7 -
Flowing shadows caressing walls whispering in quiet abandon. The lightest touch of a breeze rifling through fine fibres of carpets and tapestries. A room drowning in the twilight of flickering candlelight.
Whisper of cloth. A soft breath. The faint scent of apricot.
It was almost painful to look at Gabrielle while she slept. So much innocence. So young. Almost fragile. Youthful features framed by flowing waves of blonde hair. The ever so tinniest frown shaping pale brows.
Xena swallowed and moved closer. Crouching in front of their bed, she released a slow breath. A hand reaching out to gently brush a stray lock away. Her fingertips lingering on the softness of the hair. To slowly trace along soft skin. A smile on red lips as the small frame on the bed moved. Turning towards her presence.
Trying to be as quiet as possible, she got out of her clothes and carefully, gently crawled into bed.
Comfortable warmth like a tender caress against her chilled skin.
Gabrielle lay on her side and quite without conscious thought she reached out and traced her fingers along her back. Smiling as the small frame moved ever so lightly. A soft sound.
Moving closer, she brushed long, blonde tresses to one side. Fingertips lingering on the silky softness. Moving to lightly outline the curve of an earlobe.
Her lips touching sleep-warmed skin. Soft. Whisper of tiny hair.
"...you're cold..." A sleepy, barely coherent whisper.
Her hand moved and playfully tickled a flat belly. "Want me to leave?"
The softest of laughter and slowly, carefully Gabrielle rolled onto her back. Only a brief flicker of discomfort chasing shadows in sleepy green eyes.
They looked at each other for a long silent moment.
A small hand reaching up to trace the smile on red lips. “If you stop now, I’m gonna have to hurt you.” Pale brows shifting into a mock-scowl.
Felt more than she heard the low rumble of laughter. And closed her eyes as the large hand started its movement again. Tracing soft flesh. Followed by light touches of lips. Losing herself in the waves of warmth and desire dulling anything else.
Torches had been lit all around the outer camp. Flickering shadows chasing each other across the surface of tents. Blending into the darkness of the night that had slowly taken hold of Athens.
A comfortable chill had settled since the sun had dropped behind the mountains and Gregorios shifted a little and wrapped an old blanket around himself.
A deep, long breath. Old, callused hands rubbing his face.
Next to him the young soldier was humming an old song. A big, proud smile on his face. "...she looked incredible...all that armour...Zeus..." He laughed.
Gregorios merely nodded.
"And that blonde..." He moved closer. Dropping his voice a little. "What did you mean by her being Xena's soul?"
The older man looked up. “A knife or an arrow can hurt you….would most likely kill you. I’ve seen her wounded so many times I stopped counting and some of those injuries had been pretty damn bad. That she survived all of them was … is a bit of a miracle. But you know what?”
The young man moved even closer. Curiosity flickering in his eyes.
“Physical wounds heal eventually. Even the worst of them. But some wounds you can’t see…they are inside somewhere, hidden….and they don’t heal. They will kill you slowly and painfully.”
He got up and moved away from the fire. Stepped into the darkness surrounding their camp. “They won’t heal.” He repeated. Softly.
A confused frown wrinkled dark brows and the young soldier shook his head a little. From the back of the camp deep, husky voices started another old song and a soft breeze brought the scent of ale and roasted meat to him.
Hesitating a moment for Gregorios to continue, he then shrugged and left to join the rest of the army in their little celebration. One of many for the next few days.
Gregorios listened to him leave and then returned his attention back to the walls surrounding Athens. Watched the dim candlelight dancing behind the curtained windows of the palace.
Her hair was coated with icy flakes of snow. Her breath immediately freezing on any loose hair it touched.
She coughed and took a careful step forward. Pausing briefly to listen to the whispers coming from the ice underneath her feet. It had been this cold for almost a fortnight and she was quite sure that the ice would hold her – but no sense in taking any risks.
On the other side of the lake she saw the warm, welcoming glow of a small village. Dark, thin lines of smoke tickling the clear blue of the sky.
She could almost feel the touch of flames on her chilled skin. The numbing burn of alcohol in her throat and the slippery liquidity of roasted ham on her fingers.
A sniff and a long exhale.
It had been one Hades of a year and she was looking forward to some quiet time. A warm bed – maybe a warm body, too. A small smirk on broken lips that faded just as quickly.
Her first attempt at gathering an army.
Her first real big battles.
And her first devastating defeats.
It had hurt.
Losing like that. Having to run like some...
Brows sprinkled with tiny icicles wrinkled in a soft frown. Well, she was young. And she’d be damned if she was going to let herself be stopped by a few setbacks.
She had a destiny to fulfil.
And nothing and no one would stop her from doing so.
The wind picked up in speed and was pounding against her already cold body in icy waves. It felt like blades against her unprotected skin and she tried to bury deeper into her coat.
Just a few more steps.
A few more steps...
She was leaving tiny pools of water with every step and a tiny lake started gathering underneath her chair but she couldn’t care less. It was warm. She had her first cup of ale and already she could smell the scent of roasted meat heading her way.
The inn was small by any standards and not even hallway full. Actually, there were only two more guests and those looked like they were part of the inventory.
Shifting a little on her chair, pale blue eyes strayed over the room in front of her.
The inn looked well kept. It even smelled good. Pursing her lips in thought, pale blue eyes lingered on the flickering dance of flames. Might be a nice enough place to pass the winter.
The door opened and two young women entered. Laughing and shaking snowflakes out of their hair.
She might even find something to pass the time with.
The innkeeper appeared from the kitchen and placed her food in front of her. Smiling hesitantly as she paid. He bit his lower lip and then cleared his throat. "Passing through?...Pretty bad timing for travelling, huh?"
Just to put him at ease, she chuckled amiably. "Yeah...hadn't expected the weather to be this bad down here."
His smile got warmer and broader. "Mmh...it hasn't been this bad for a few year. I guess it was our time, again." He laughed. "Teaches you to pray more regularly."
He seemed to get comfortable and she shifted a little. "This is a nice little village. I might stay a few days. Wait out the cold."
"Know a place where I could get a room?"
"Sure." He turned and looked around the inn. Noticing one of the young women who had entered a few moments before. "Lila!"
The dark-haired girl turned around and smiled at him. Walking over as he waved at her. "Kostas! A good day to you!"
They exchanged a warm greeting and Xena couldn't quiet keep herself from letting her eyes travel along the girl's body.
"Lila, does Giannakos have still a few rooms to rent?"
The girl seemed to think about that for a moment but then nodded. "Yes. Three of the smaller ones upstairs. Why?"
Kostas pointed at Xena. "This lady is looking for a room."
Blue eyes rolled at the 'lady' comment but she kept quiet and smiled at the young woman.
Dark eyes looked at her with little disguised suspicion. But then she shrugged. "Okay...my husband's inn is just down the road. There is a large oak right in front of it...you can't miss it."
Lila nodded at Kostas and with a last look at Xena returned to the other woman waiting for her.
Xena smirked and scratched her chin. Winking at Kostas. "She liked me."
The man laughed. "Don't worry. She's is a little...um...difficult but a good friend. And Giannakos, her husband, is a very nice guy."
"Well, thanks for your help! I appreciate that!"
With a last smile he disappeared in the kitchen, leaving her to one of the most delicious meals she had in a long time.
What woke her hours later was the very off-key singing of someone in the next room. Dark brows wrinkled in annoyance and she scowled at the wall for a moment considering going over there.
But she just didn't feel like stirring up trouble. Yawning, she stretched and took a deep, long breath. Feeling pleasantly lazy. It surprised her. After months of being on alert twenty-four hours a day this felt almost...wrong. Somehow.
A faint smirk as she got up. But it felt good, too.
She put on a pair of well-worn leather pants. Slipping into a heavy tunic, she took a step towards the window and looked outside.
It was snowing. Again.
Flakes of fluffy white tumbling through a gentle breeze. The faint sound of sighing trees surrendering to the weight.
The village lay peaceful. Only a few people were outside hurrying through the snow. The air was filled with the scent of smoke and something that reminded her of cinnamon. And...
Pale blue eyes clouding over with wistful memories.
She could almost hear her mother calling for her to get ready for breakfast. Angular features lost their warmth. Well, that was over. She had grown up. And a destiny to follow. Everything else ---
The sound of a clear, melodic laughter caught her attention and she looked around to locate its source.
Which wasn't so difficult.
Two small forms were running through the snow. Throwing snowballs at each other. Laughing and squeaking every time they were hit.
It made her smile for some reason.
Pale eyes glittering mischievously as she collected some snow from her window-sill and waited a moment until the two forms were close enough. Aiming at the taller of the two she threw.
The two halted their play and looked around in surprise.
She chuckled and leaned out of the window. Enjoying their confusion in almost childish abandon.
Then the taller form turned around and looked at her. Scowling and walking over to her. Close enough to recognise gentle features and the obvious curves of a young woman.
And a pair of beautiful, angry green eyes glaring at her.
That was all she saw because before she could even react a snowball hit her square in the face.
His feet…his entire body felt way too heavy as he took the last couple of steps towards the private quarters on the second floor of the palace.
He cleared his throat and used his free hand to straighten his clothes. The other hand held a small package enveloped in colourful cloth. That had caused some ribbing from the boys but that’s how they had done it for almost ten years and that wouldn’t change now just because most of the old guys were dead.
On the top of the stairs Piraeleus met him. The huge man looked at him for a long silent moment and then the ever so slightest hint of a smirk played on his pale lips.
“She will be happy to see you, old friend.”
Gregorios swallowed and then shrugged a little. “How is she doing? We were surprised to see her yesterday.”
A genuine smile appeared on Piraeleus’ face. “Better….but she always feels better with Xena around.” Seeing the hesitation in the old man, he gently pushed him forward. “Go on.”
And before Gregorios could argue, he had entered the huge quarters of the Conqueror. Even after all this time and his prior position he couldn’t help but feel out of place.
The sun had risen an hour ago and just now started to reach the walls of the palace. Bathing the room in an intense, golden glow. Aided by the translucent curtains covering the huge windows. A soft breeze dancing through the thin cloth.
Gabrielle sat in a chair near the windows and was writing on a piece of parchment. Her hair pulled back in a loose tail at the back of her neck.
Looking around the old man noticed with a bit of relief that Xena wasn’t here and taking a deep breath he took a step forward.
She was already smiling as she turned to him. “Gregorios…!” Tilting her head, a small smirk tugged at pink lips. “I thought you guys had forgotten me this year.”
Returning the smile, he put down the small present. “Not as long as one of us old dogs is still around.”
A flicker of sunlight got caught in sparkling green eyes as she slowly unwrapped the gift. Gregorios shifted a little uncomfortable as he eyes travelled down her body. Her legs were hidden by a long dress. But he didn’t need to see them to know what they looked like.
It was an image that haunted his dreams.
He swallowed as the door behind him opened with a soft sound. And he swore that the temperature in the room dropped a few degrees.
Footsteps. Heavy. Slow. The scent of leather and something herbal. And an electricity of personality he only met once in his life.
She walked past him without one look and came to a halt next to Gabrielle. Her face didn’t change – a mask of cool aloofness, cruel almost but her eyes…
Her eyes were glowing with warmth and affection. Dancing as Gabrielle tilted her head and smiled. It reminded him of the first time he had met them – when things had been so different…
Gods, his body hurt.
Coughing the sand out of his lungs, he slowly sat up and dropped his broken sword. Squinting against a bright, blue sky at a dark silhouette hovering above him.
“You’re good.” A low, serious voice.
It made him laugh. Almost. But he simply shrugged and somehow managed to get up with some dignity. All around him soldiers were collecting themselves from the short sword lesson. And he had to admit that he had lasted longer than all of them.
Her body relaxed a little and a small smile danced in the corners of her mouth.
“Meet me in my tent at dinner. We need to talk.”
Turning, she smirked at her second in command. “Have them wash up…and give them those two barrels of ale. Might as well celebrate tonight.”
Those words were greeted by loud cheers and husky laughter.
Gregorios released a long breath. Watching her walk to the back of the camp where her tent was located.
One of his friends walked up to him and slapped him on the back. “Well, boy…seems you’ll be getting lucky tonight, huh?”
“Right.” He shook his head and started to dust his leathers off. But couldn’t help the flicker of excitement trembling in the pit of his stomach.
"You've polished that part for like the nth time, buddy." Piraeleus smirked and leaned back on a small heap of cushions.
Gregorios simply ignored him. Hades, he knew that himself but he wanted to look…well…good. Whatever was going to happen tonight…if anything happened…but just in case…one had to be prepared, right?
And there had been numerous rumours among the troops about her appetite.
He felt a small smile tug at his lips. Wouldn't mind being at that particular receiving end of her appetite. Thankful for the dim light in the tent that hid his faint blush at the thought.
Taking a deep breath, he tugged a final time at his uniform and then headed towards the tent's exit. Accompanied by Piraeleus' husky chuckles. "Watch where put your sword, buddy."
Some of the guys outside had picked up that last sentence and he was greeted by amused laughter.
Among some envious stares.
Dusk had fallen and the camp drowned in an ocean of deep orange. Lines of black crawling along the horizon…preparing to take over the sky. A strong but comfortable wind hurried through the lines of tents. Dancing through the heavy roof of leaves they had sheltered under. Their soft whispers sounding suspiciously like laughter.
The officers' tents were located at the eastern end of the camp and a small group of guards greeted him with big smiles. They had lightened a campfire and from somewhere the strong scent of roasted meat drifted towards them.
Taking a step away from the small group, one of the guards stopped him. "Where are you headed, soldier?" The smirk never leaving his face.
"I…" Gregorios swallowed. He what, indeed? "I was summoned by Xena." He pulled himself up a little. "I am expected."
The guard simply laughed and slapped a heavy hand on his back. "Never mind, soldier. Go ahead."
Xena's tent was in the very centre of this part of camp. Huge, decorated with heavy furs. Her banner slapping to the rhythm of the wind on top of it.
He brushed his hands through his messy, curly hair and releasing a trembling breath, knocked at a post next to the entry.
"Come in, please."
He hesitated a moment. A confused frown wrinkling his brows. It had been a woman's voice – but it definitely hadn't been Xena's voice.
And he had never heard the word please uttered in this army before.
Unsure what do to, he lifted the buckskin covering the entry and stepped into the soft, golden twilight of the tent.
If it looked impressive from the outside…it was almost ridiculously simple decorated in the inside. One part was taking up by a huge table - numerous maps cluttered along its length. At the back he saw a smaller table surrounded by chairs. Huge candlesticks placed at its side…bathing canvas and wood in waves of flickering candlelight.
And to his right was …he swallowed. The sleeping area, obviously.
He looked around more closely. Trying to locate the woman that had asked him to enter.
Just then a piece of cloth separating the left half of the tent from the rest shifted and a small woman appeared.
Dressed in a simple, off-white dress, doing nothing to hide a small but well sculptured body, especially against the soft light of the candles, she was busy trying to tame long, wet blonde locks.
"Gods, one of these days, I swear, I have them cut, Xena. Better even, I shave them all off! What do you think, huh?? Would you still love me all bald and ugly?"
And looked up for the first time.
They both jumped. But he was able to suppress the soft shriek he had felt tickling his tongue.
Immediately he lifted his hand and took a step back. "I…easy…you said to come in…I am sorry, I thought you were…I…"
And felt a very strong hand closing on his right shoulder. His bones actually groaning under the steely grip.
The scent of leather and steel, mixed with something he couldn't quite place, drifted to him. And then warm breath caressed his ear. A low, deadly calm voice. "And what do you think you are doing here, huh?"
Not knowing what to do but feeling Hades already reaching for him, he begged the young woman with his eyes to help him.
She had evidently recovered from her shock. "Xena, no…wait…this is a misunderstanding. I heard a knock and thought it was Berra. I hadn't heard you leave and just assumed he was you."
Gregorios missed the sight of one finely shaped dark brow lifting. All he saw was a cute smile wrinkling the young blonde's face in front of him.
She shrugged. "It can happen, you know."
His knees started shaking in earnest as he heard a low growl at his back. Great, he was caught between a deadly woman at his back and a crazy slave…or whatever… in front of him. Somehow he had imagined his death differently.
But then the hand on his shoulder disappeared as did the warmth of Xena's body and she stepped around him. Completely ignoring him.
Her face was set in stone. The muscles in her jaws moving ever so lightly under smooth tanned skin as she came to a halt facing the young woman.
Gods, she was going to kill her.
Taking any courage left in him, he dared to speak up. "Xena, really…it wasn't her fault. I should have waited outside. It's not her fault."
For a painfully long moment the tall woman didn't move. Then she slowly turned to him. Her face betraying no emotion. Then suddenly her lips quirked into a smirk. "But she can be a pain in the butt, that one."
The world as he knew it crumbling around him as the young blonde lost her smile and huffed in indignation. Poking Xena – The Conqueror of Greece, Ares' Chosen…in her belly. Without being cut into pieces for having done so.
And then he saw it.
The way those incredible blue eyes softened. Warmed with something so deep and true…
He swallowed. Feeling terribly out of place as Xena turned back to the blonde. Cupping her face with one hand, leaning forward a little. A smile on her face he had never seen before.
"Yes, you are…" she said, "but you are my pain in the but… so that's alright."
...to be continued in Part 3
I am already writing part 3, so I hope to post it soon – a lot sooner than this one. J As for the ending…I know some of you will wonder whether it will have a happy ending or not – and to be honest I am not sure yet … both alternatives have their appeal right now. I am not promising anything but since I said it is sort-of an alternative ending to "Falling" – who knows…
Again, thank you for your patience and the support! It means an awful lot to me!
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