Something in your eyes keeps haunting me
I'm trying to escape you
And I know there ain't no way to
To chase you from my mind …
"Painted on My Heart" The Cult
She was falling in love with Wedge Antilles.
She hated admitting it, dreaded admitting it, but it was true. She was falling in love with her dearest friend.
Mirax glared up at the ceiling as if it were the cause of all her turmoil, almost snarling to herself. This wasn’t supposed to happen, but why should she be surprised that it did? Deep down, had she REALLY thought that there was nothing between them other than lust?
When she had tentatively leaned forward to touch his lips with hers, had she really believed that it would stop there? That she could just go on with her life as if nothing had happened? She wasn’t a fool. She could lie to herself for only so long. She did love Wedge. And she had loved him for a long time.
Looking back, she knew that she had been in love with him before his parents died. His need and her willingness to support a grieving friend had just opened the floodgates for emotions that she had been carefully keeping in check.
She covered her face with her hands, trying to block the thoughts that whirled around her mind. What the hell was she going to do? She was in love with Wedge Antilles. She could barely keep from panicking at the thought of being in love with the pilot. It was just too fresh, too overwhelming, to even consider he could love her.
"Gods, what am I going to do?" she groaned, curling up in a ball. Suddenly she regretted that moment’s indiscretion. That first kiss. Oh Gods, why had she started this? Why couldn’t she have just ignored her desire for him?
Because she wanted him. Pure and simple as that. She wanted him in her life as more than a brother. As more than her friend. She wanted him to love her as much as she loved him.
But did he love her?
Foolish question, Terrik. Wedge is not the sort of man that would play with a woman. You’ve seen the way he looks at you. He wants you. And you’ve seen something more than friendship and lust in those gorgeous eyes.
She hoped, she dreaded, that she had sensed the same emotions from him. Hoping that perhaps he loved her as much as she loved him. Dreading that their love for each other might result in the loss of someone who meant so much to her.
She threw the pillow over her head to muffle her scream of frustration. She loved him. He loved her. Why couldn’t it be as simple as that?
I wonder if she knows what she’s doing to my sleeping cycles. Knowing Mirax, she probably doesn’t give a damn. Wedge stretched out on the mattress until his muscles protested against the movement. The last access tunnel Mirax had pulled him into had been almost too small for the two of them. Which had made things much more enjoyable. The press of her body against his was one of the reasons why he was still awake. The physical and mental ache for her now a constant in his life. She wouldn't care or she’d find it humorous that I’m spending ANOTHER sleepless night because of her game.
It wasn’t a game and both of them knew it. There was too much emotion involved for it to be nothing more than a game of sexual tag. Friendship and desire and love. Love had always bound them together, but like everything else in the universe, it was evolving into something new.
The deepening of their friendship was impossible not to notice. He saw it every time she bolted from the little niches she seemed to love to drag him into. Her eyes danced with mischief each time she pulled him close, then something would change and longing would illuminate her expression. Sometimes she would risk a gentle touch, truly exposing herself in that gesture. Or the passion of her kiss would be overcome by something sweeter, more enduring.
He would see an almost helpless yearning that tore at his heart. He wanted to pull her into his arms and hold her until she realized that he would not leave her. Would never leave her. How could he leave someone who was so close to him? She was the one person who understood all aspects of him and was accepting of the darkness that had the potential to obliterate his soul.
But he knew he couldn't act on that desire. She wasn't ready. And even if she was, Mirax was not one for subtly. Nothing short of a full attack would make her realize that he was in love with her...
He was in love with Mirax Terrik…
Slowly, Wedge smiled, knowing that it was the truth. It explained so much. Why he had never really been interested in any of the women who had made advances towards him. Why he had always felt like he was waiting for something. Now he knew that he hadn't been waiting for something, he had been waiting for someone to realize her feelings. Waiting for her to realize that she loved him just as much as he loved her.
How could he NOT be in love with her? She was intelligent and beautiful and...Gods, I am besotted. He chuckled, trying not to think of how close he had been to her earlier that day. Of how well her body had fit against his. I might be crazy but this is the best damn rush I've ever felt.
He couldn't describe it. Maybe if you could have a dogfight while in hyperspace, the sensation MIGHT begin to describe the wild pleasure he felt while playing these love games with Mirax. It was too exhilarating for words. It was more addictive than glitterstim. He wanted her. Craved her. And was terrified that when the games of 'hide and seek' were over, somehow he would lose her. He didn’t want their play to end, but the games could not continue indefinitely. Sooner or later, one of them would have to make a move.
But would that move cost him the woman he loved? The person who truly understood every quirk of his personality and loved him despite of those same weaknesses. He didn't want to act, wanted to pretend that their games could go on forever. But he sensed that if someone didn't act soon, then their relationship would grow so strained that nothing would salvage it.
And then he truly would be alone.
Wedge quickly turned his thoughts to more pleasant topics. Like how to convince an overly stubborn smuggler that she should stop hiding and show her true feelings. Just think of it in terms of tactics. What would be the next logical step?
Suddenly, he knew the perfect way to begin his campaign. It wasn't logical but it would definitely make her realize how much he cared about her. It would be risky. It would probably get him vaporized by Booster when he found out what Wedge had done, but it would be worth it.
Wedge grinned to himself. Booster might kill him, but Wedge would die a happy man.
Continued in Part Four