A/N: Hi everyone! This is the last chapter of Déjà-Vu, I think everything will be clear after this chapter. I will post an epilogue for real closure in a few weeks. Maybe a bit earlier if I have the chance. I am sorry the update took so long, but I did something terribly stupid, namely deleting this chapter when it was completely finished. So I had to reconstruct is all over again… that took a lot of time. But here it is, enjoy!
Chapter xxvi: Fairytale
I saved you.
"Why?" My voice cracks with difficulty.
"Stop asking darling, you don't want to know." With a swift motion of her hand, my body flies upwards and collides with the floor again in a matter of seconds. Why hasn't this killed me already? She must have pulled this trick about eleven times. Yet the only pain I experience, is that cursed tattoo crawling vigorously underneath my skin. It wants to get out. The queen seems to have equal musings about my stamina because she squats down next to me and sighs.
"Since this is going to take a while… I'll enlighten you." She says, getting up, before she makes a graceful, yet scornful bow. "It started out rather innocently." She whispers as I feel an iron fist closing over my neck. "So innocently." She grins devilishly as I start choking when the grip tightens.
"But then…" The hold over my neck disappears instantly and I collapse again, coughing and gasping for air.
"Diaspro." I manage to squeak out between hurling coughs.
"Very good, my dear." She replies dismissively.
"Why was she at Redfountain?" I question, not-understanding.
"Well hon, as much as I disliked your unwanted liaison, I was afraid the press would enjoy it very much."
"So you wanted them to know about Diaspro instead?" I deduce.
"Anything would be better than…" She makes a gesture as if she wants to toss something away. "Originally, I never intended him to marry Diaspro. She was not high enough in rank." As I open my mouth to protest, she holds up her hand, shaking her long tresses. "I know she gives herself airs. Anyhow, she ended up being a worthy candidate to discourage you. I helped you by granting you privacy with my dear son and you just… threw that away? You weren't supposed to get attached, princess." She hisses menacingly.
"But why not?! I love your son. How could that be a problem?" I ask, desperately trying to understand her motives.
"The problem is that he loved you back. He wanted to marry you!" she exclaims disparagingly. 'Loves', my mind corrects her. "You were barely eighteen and I wasn't even forty!" She continues disdainfully.
"How does that concern you? I don't understand!"
"Of course you don't. I'll tell you because you won't be able to get out of here alive." We'll see about that. "Eraklyon is a rather conservative monarchy. For example, our Constitution states that the crown prince must be married if he chuses to ascend the throne. The King is an old man, hon, he already was when I married him… Still, he would keep ruling if Sky didn't marry. But when Sky found this eligible fiancée of his, his father agreed to step aside. Very touching."
"I never asked for that." I interject angrily, but she plants her foot in my side and kicks me.
"If you would have listened to me in the first place, this wouldn't be necessary! If Sky would have agreed with Diaspro, everything would have been completely different. I know he doesn't love her and it is a custom in our circles to postpone the wedding until the father has formally consented by announcing to abdicate. But Sky wouldn't wait for you, no no." She shakes her head ironically. "Do you know what he said to me? 'Screw protocol' I never taught him those words." She yells at the top of her lungs. "It's… all… your… fault!" She puffs as she kicks me in the gut at every word.
"I deserve to be queen! Because of the rigid rules in this country, I would be for a very long time. The power! The freedom! It's the only thing worth living for in this forsaken place." For a millisecond, I think I perceive a certain sadness in her dark eyes, but her mood changes again instantly. "And you want to take that away from me? The only thing I have left?" She is one unhappy woman. Still…
"That doesn't give you the right to kill me." I object, trying to stand up.
"Sure it does." She puts her foot against my elbow, making me fall again. "I am the Queen of Eraklyon." She yells angrily and slaps me in the face twice. I start laughing as she wants to strike again.
"You really don't get it, do ya?" I chuckle.
"What on Eraklyon are you talking about?" She spews uncharacteristically.
"I did not know queens were supposed to be this dense." I retort.
"This is only going to make it hurt more darling." She punches me in the gut with a chandelier, making me huff.
"You really don't get it!" I now state more than question.
"Since you're so bright." She snatches a couple of strands of my hair and bashes my head into the wall. "Enlighten me."
"I am not going to attack you." I spell out slowly. To my surprise, she lets out a cackling laugh.
"Oh, like you did last time." She catches me off guard and plunges a knife into my flesh, making me yelp in pain. "We all remember what happened then."
"I did as you ordered me to, your majesty." I drone motionlessly.
"Very good my love. To show you my gratitude, I would like to…"
"Mother?!" a familiar voice calls out unbelievingly.
"Sky? What are you doing here?" I ask, panicking.
"You set this up, you dirty whore!" His mother wants to lash out at me, but Sky stops her.
"Mother, what's happening?" he asks, astounded. "Don't hurt her." He says, glancing at me.
"Sky, this is none of your business. Leave. Now."
"No mother! Not until you…" his angry voice is muffled by his dear mother's hand on his mouth.
"Shut up!" She demands and mutters a few words, sending him flying into a shed and locking him up safely. As I feel myself heat up, fuelled by my anger, I recall Sky's words …'Don't hurt her.' He was talking to me. He didn't want me to hurt his mother. I calm down gradually as the queen eyes me curiously. I start murmuring the words for the spell. After three sentences, I already feel the magic being drained out of me, forming a radiant bubble around me. Few minutes later I collide with the floor.
"I should have known you were to weak."
"But… I have given him up. I love him!"
"No,Ilove him, he is my son." A blow. I feel I am colliding with the hard shingle. The last thing I perceive are her eyes, that turned pitch-black, that disgrace the ever-glistening rubies decorating her ears. They're red.
"Well, that would be just fine for me, hon." She smiles maliciously. I can't let her get to me now.
"I'm still a little vague on the details, could you fill that in for me?" I ask, fake doe-eyed. I scream loudly as she pulls the knife out of my upper arm with torturing slow jerks. This is not a killing by inches, but by hairbreadths.
"Oh no! I remember!" I cry out, much to her surprise. "Your son saved me!" Her eyes turn from pitch-black to that one colour I love and despise.
"Liar!" She screams hysterically. She lunges her knife at me sloppily, so I can avoid it by jumping out of the way, which reminds me of the throbbing pain in my arm.
"You don't know for sure, do ya?" I taunt her. "That's why you're freaking out."
"Queens don't freak out, Earth girl." She replies icily.
"Oh fine. You are worried. Because I know what happened a few minutes ago, before I met you here. And you don't."
I open the door nervously.
"I have a plan." I blurt out before he even steps in.
"I had something in mind myself." He replies with a concerned look. "This has got to end."
"I don't want to meet her here." I look at the ground, embarrassed.
"Of course not. Go to my room. I will make sure she finds you there. Tecna already put cameras and microphones." He nods at me reassuringly. "I already told Stell, by the way."
"Oh, that's why she was looking at you like that." I nod understandingly.
"Like what?" he asks confusedly.
"Like she was going to decapitate you." I answer abruptly. "I'm scared." I confess with a tiny voice.
"That's okay." He reacts by pulling me into a hug. I retract myself from his embrace after a few minutes, blushing as he leans in until our foreheads touch. When I tilt my trembling head up to make our lips meet, he averts his cheek slightly.
"I'm sorry Bloom… I…"
"Of course." I reply absently. "Maybe you should leave." I add coolly, glaring at him.
"Please." I plead quietly. "Please Sky."
"No." he take my hands in his. "You'll never be able to face her in your current emotional state. You need to be strong, Bloom." He sighs and presses his lips on my left ring finger. "I do not regret saving your life that day, Bloom. I do not repent the fact that I stood up against my mother for you. I am sorry I let it get that far. You're the rose Bloom. You're my scarlet rose. And I love you, I do. God, too much." He shakes his head. "But this is difficult for me too. She is my mother."
"I know that Sky. I could have killed her, you know." He flinches at the word. "But I didn't, because of you, you idiot."
"She will pay for this, Bloom." He stares at me intently.
"Why didn't you visit me when I was in coma, in the hospital?" I ask bluntly.
"Because I was afraid. I already got you killed once. It was all my fault Bloom. I could never have borne the guilt if you had gotten hurt a second time because of me."
"I'm trying to understand that logic, but…"
"After I saved you on Sparx, I called Faragonda. I have been working with her from the day of your death till now to make sure you ended up… like you used to be."
"It will never be like it used to be." I reply coldly. "So everything you did around me was just a charade?"
"Well…" he chuckles to my surprise. "It was supposed to be. I had to be gently when I met you again. Yet I touched you. I grasped every chance I could to talk to you, to listen to you, to feel you… I didn't really respect my boundaries. You can't blame me, huh?" he winks, looking at me appreciatively. His face expression changes to grave again. "Do you honestly believe I could orchestrate my feelings for you?" he asks seriously.
"Of course not." I reply, angry at my quick earnest response. My anger subsides nonetheless.
"Look, I know this conversation is far from over, but I really have to go. Go to my room and try not to freak out. If I am able to stop by, I will. Wait for the three knocks on the door."
"Okay." I nod, glancing at him. "What are you up to?"
"There's one more person I have to take care of for tricking my girlfriend into kissing him." He snickers and presses a soft kiss on my lips. "This will all be over soon, Bloom. I love you."
"That is NOT true!"
"And how would you know? You weren't in my bedroom half an hour ago and at Sparx, you left after you gave me that final kick, into the water. That was a nice move by the way. It actually saved my life. That must be karma." She jumps forward and grabs me by the throat, choking me.
"I am going to kill you!" she growls. That's my girl. I raise my finger, informing her that I have one more thing to say.
"Famous last words? I know I won't remember them." She loosens her grip slightly, so I squeak out.
"Actually, that kick wasn't really karma." I smile as I hear the door creak open, which makes her determinate expression falter. Her hands fall limp next to her body as she sees her husband enter, followed by Sky, the Three, the Winx and the Specialists. "That is karma." I tell her.
"No, no, no, no!" she wails desperately as Faragonda steps forward and hugs me.
"I apologize for your suffering Bloom. I am proud of you." Her gray-blue eyes sparkle with dignity and pride. She turns to the queen gravely.
"Your Majesty, the Queen, you are hereby arrested for the murder on crown prince Bloom of Sparx, magical treason, …" As Faragonda sums up all the Queen's crimes, Sky doesn't blink. He just stares at his father numbly. The latter moves forward and whispers uncertainly.
"Niobe?" Irony much. "What did I do?" Oh my God, he blames himself.
"You married me." The Queen retaliates coldly as Faragonda softly ties the magical shackles around her alabaster wrists.
"I thought we were happy." He tries again.
"You hypocrite!" she flares up. "You knew I wasn't! You tried to lock me up, you never came to see me, except for those horrible weekly visits to my bedroom!" She rages. Okay, this is kinda private. "You never made me happy Richard, you only made yourself happy." The King bows his head in defeat. When he looks up again, he looks ten years older.
"If that is how you feel, Countess." He emphasizes the last word bitterly. "You have hereby abdicated yourself from the throne by neglecting your marital duties. You are now no longer Niobe, Queen of Eraklyon. You are now again Niobe, Countess of Serleto."
"You had to take that away from you, didn't you?" She murmurs. When he doesn't reply, she repeats it louder. "Didn't you?!"
"Stop it mother!" Sky interferes calmly by stepping between his father and his mother, towering over them both. As this happens, Stella cannot contain herself any longer and she dashes over to me, choking me in a hug.
"Um, Stella… you have to let me go. I'm kinda hurt."
"Oh my GOD! I am so glad you are alive! I flipped when Sky explained that risky plan. I thought I was going to decapitate him!" She babbles quickly. Brandon joins us and wraps a protective arm around Stella's waist.
"Hey!" he greets me as if this is merely a casual encounter between friends. "You have a little something on your arm." He removes his hand from Stella's side to push his bangs out of the way and points at the bleeding wound.
"Oh my GOD!" Stella screeches frantically. "Is that BLOOD?!" This last word attracts the attention of the other Winx. Especially when Stella promptly faints.
"Oh great." Musa sneers, while Tecna rolls her eyes ostentatiously.
"Are you okay, sweetie?" Flora asks kindly. I close my eyes and take a deep breath. I only want this to end.
"I am fine Flora. I just need some bandages." I smile, at ease.
"Or not." Layla remarks, glancing at my arm.
"Hey, it has healed!" Riven remarks.
"Waw Riven, that is such a keen observation!" Musa mocks and winks at Layla.
"Oh shut up!" He retorts gruffly and squeezes her in the waist, making her yelp indignantly.
"I guess she's back." Timmy smiles at me before squatting down next to Tecna, who is slapping Stella's cheek rhythmically, whilst looking very irritated.
As I capture Sky's look, who is watching his mother being carried off, Stella seems to recover.
"Hey Bloom." Musa grins widely. "You might wanna check a mirror."
As is slowly move towards a nearby mirror, Brandon exclaims gaily:
"She's little red riding head again!"
"God Brandon, now you ruined the surprise!" Stella reprimands him. Guess she woke up alright. "And that is still a bad joke!"
I look at my reflection resignedly. I am a redhead once more. As I want to feel is the tattoo is still there, Sky guesses my thoughts as he appears behind me, and he slips his hand underneath my t-shirt. I shiver as he hands roam my skin tenderly, but realize the tattoo is still here. As I stare at him in the looking glass, he runs his fingers through my hair softly. And then he whispers three blissful words:
Three tiny lies, because something inside me screams the complete opposite.
No, I have only just begun.
A/N: I still have something left to say to several people
Firefairy219: Boo-yah! Finally : ) I was starting to get upset with myself for not updating! Oh and I would appreciate it if you could spot errors in my writing. But only if you want to! Don't do it if it reminds you of school, 'kay? How's college working out for you? Kheb proefexamen verbintenissen (srry, te tam om op te zoeken int Engels ;)) donderdag. Mondeling… Brrrrr… And I have two more after the easter holidays. Although easter holidays aren't really holidays, are they? Paasblok :D Have to go now, I have to reply to Totally Lori's review (it requires some serious concentration) xD
Totally Lori: I sent you an e-mail by the way : ) I'm happy with every review you turn in, you know. (god I am sucking up right now, but it's still the truth!) Sorry about the cryptic thing in the previous chapter, but I think I made everything a lot clearer now… right? :D That's how it's supposed to be. And you know, I mean to write something where people think about.. Not just read and smile. (though I already accept that one too.)
I'm glad you liked what I did to Layla, because it was kinda for you :D Just kidding, it was totally for you! And I thought it was funny. Funny funny me. Okay, randomness is starting to kick in. and I'm hungry. I have to go, but I'll get back to you about that other thing (sounds secretive, huh?) And uhm, I passed my Christmas exams, by the way. X
Princessbloom94: I did write more in the new year, I guess you just expected it to be sooner. Trust me, so did I. blame my totally not-sufficient computer skills. Thanks for your review : ) x
Allya Ride: You see, that is not a very nice thing to say: 'stupid cliffy'. It doesn't motivate me to update faster. You may have been right though, but that's the reason why this is a suspense story, after all… Ah and you got the Saladin-quip in ch18. I salute you! Bye! x3
Steph19steph: Hey, welcome! New blood! I see you favorited me a couple of times, too. I'm glad you like my story. And I am super-glad you reviewed! I LOVE reviews! : ) Toodles! X
And a BIG thank you to my other readers! I know you're out there, even if you don't review and I thank you for reading! (I'll get back to that in the epilogue)