Disclaimer: I do not own any of the characters or locations mentioned in the Prince of Persia series, nor am I making any money off of this bit of writing.

From up on the balcony he was able to look out over the city and see the progress that was being made in the repairs and rebuilding. Tonight watching the lights of the city below him and knowing that his people were able to begin resuming their normal lives, despite all that had happened did nothing to comfort him. After the argument he had with Farah earlier that evening he could not tell what it would take for him to be able to relax again. An apology from her might have been a good starting point.

Looking back on it, he was unable to recall exactly what it had been that they were discussing when she first started to raise her voice. He would have thought that after all they had been through together and the near destruction of both their kingdoms that they should have been completely happy together, that she would never have wanted to argue with him over trivial little things.

It must have been unimportant as he was unable to remember what had been said that first started her yelling at him, how she had accused him of 'being as selfish as ever' and 'having learned nothing from all that had happened'.

As if the Vizier's treachery was something he could have prevented. If anything the blame lay upon Farah and her father for trusting the man for so long. He had said as much, probably not the wisest action he could have taken in the situation, but he had hoped that maybe shame would make her give up on the disagreement, realize she was as much at fault as anyone. Instead it had only served to worsen the situation.

They had continued to argue at increasing volume until they were genuinely yelling at each other, yet she still persisted in maintaining that he was the one who was wrong.

Though it had happened hours ago just thinking about it filled him with as much frustration as when it had been happening.

She had simply refused to accept that she was being unreasonable, that she was letting her emotions get the better of her and cloud her judgment. The affairs of her former home were not his responsibility, and now that she was married to him, had chosen to marry him, they should not have been of any great concern to her either. He had his own people to worry about, among countless other things.

It was typical really, how she had gotten so upset that she refused to listen to reason. Still, that it had ended up coming to blows surprised him. Never had he expected that she would actually raise a hand against him.

He put his hand to the side of his face where the blow had landed. It was shock more than anything that made it stand out in his mind. Just a slap, it had done no damage and caused no pain, but the sound had been quite dramatic and the look of anger Farah had given him stung.

His response had been reflexive, proof that he had been through too much and fighting for too long. Pulling back his arm he had come within inches of hitting her back, not a little slap, but a genuine punch straight to her face.

Halfway through he had been able to stop himself, realize what he was doing and lower his hands.

Farah must have seen in his eyes that his intent had been genuine, for the look she gave him had chilled him. It was that same look she had given him when she first saw him in his sand corrupted state.

What she then said turned his shock to anger, suggesting that he was still capable of being a monster even though the sands were long gone. For her to say such a thing only proved that she was willing to stoop to any low to win the little argument that she had initiated.

She still refused to understand that it was impossible to be a hero all the time for everyone and that there were times when one had to make decisions and prioritize. As king making those decisions was his responsibility and her responsibility, as his wife, was to be supportive of him, not to bother him with petty bickering and her own ideas about what should be done.

He had not even asked her for advice at the time.

Thinking about it did no good, there was no point in dwelling on it. Sooner or later she would come to her senses and apologize to him.

Leaning over the balcony railing he tried to focus on the city below, his view partially obscured by scaffolding. Repairs to the palace had yet to be completed as well. There was so much going on, so much he had to do, why did Farah insist on not letting him have a moment's rest from it all?

Was there nothing he could do to push their arguing from his mind? Maybe if he were to take a walk in the gardens it would help him calm down. Unless they had yet to be replanted, then it would only make it all worse. Nothing like walking past dead plants and weeds to make a bad mood even worse.

Why did she refuse to understand?

"See, what did I tell you about her?" a terribly familiar voice spoke with an insufferably smug tone.

Even as he turned, he knew that there would be no one there. There was no way anyone could have snuck up on him, even as distracted as he was, he would have heard their approach, besides even if he wanted to deny it, he recognized the voice.

"Did you miss me?" Laughter echoed in his ears, mocking laughter that carried a confidence that no one would come to investigate what was going on since no one else could hear it.

What he was hearing was impossible, the first time he would have blamed it on his frustration, but he had heard it twice.

"No," he felt like a fool, speaking to the empty night air, "No, you're gone, I –"

"You what, destroyed me? Got rid of me? How about turned and fled?"

He could not believe he was doing this, saying this, "I do not flee."

More laughter followed, "You always flee from what you refuse to accept, like now."

"What do you mean?" but before he could continue his questioning there was a timid knock at the door.

"Nowhere to run now, is there?"