A/N: So, a one-shot… that somehow goes at the end… or somewhere in the middle of Chapter 13: Three Times The Charm and just before Chapter 14: The Morning After (pffft… ehm, that sounds so wrong… this is not a lemon!) of my multi chapter fic All Blue and Green. Miriam Taylor is my own creation, and is a character in both Half and Half, as well as All Blue And Green. (a minor character, obviously… she's 68, and a bit doddery already, she holds a knitting circle once a week, she's great fun when she does not indulge in one of her impromptu naps… and, I don't know why I'm telling you this, since you might still be a little lost if you have not read my stories.)

Alexander Lennox is also one of my own minor characters; Christopher is escorting Miriam home after an event and a follow up celebration held in his honour.

I think that should do. As with my other fics… I know the academy takes 4 years, but I made a boo boo in H&H, and structured the whole thing around a three year program, and I'm sticking with it.

Also: Not sure if this qualifies, since it's pseudo traditional, but this might be my first song fic… sort of.

A little unusually for me, but this one is sad.

Disclaimer: I don't own Star Trek or any of it's characters, and I don't own the words to 'She Moves Through the Fair" either.

She was leaning on his arm only slightly as she softly sang 'She Moves Through the Fair'. Her voice was a little raspy with drink – and probably age, too – and she seemed to waver a bit, and occasionally pulled away somewhat, only to bump into him a moment later, no longer very steady on her feet. Christopher presumed that the song had popped into her head due to Alexander's Scottish and Irish background, but he could only wonder at the lyrics, given Miriam's life story.

She'd been married for the first time when she was very young, he knew. Barely out of school, only a year or so into college, and long before Starfleet Academy. He'd been English, like her, and had died seven months after they were married. Car accident.

Then had come postgraduate studies, and a few years off planet to back up the theory, and then finally her post as Anthropology fellow at the academy… at the tender age of 31. Christopher knew that Alexander had been in her very fist Introduction to Pan-Galactic Anthropology class, and was only six years her junior. But he'd been a troubled boy, 24 or not, and she had taken him under her wing.

"Isn't it lovely? I've been here 37 years… well on and off… but the fountain never seems to wane in its glory." She was smiling up at him, then indicated the smallish fountain in the court before the mess hall, illuminated softly during night time hours, and eerily beautiful. He still had to laugh a little at Miriam waxing poetic in her inebriated state, so he petted the hand he had tucked under his arm and told her:

"Sure is pretty, Mimi."

She smiled and nodded with drunken conviction.

Husband number two had been a medical researcher; she found him in a pool of his own blood in the bathroom a year and three months into the marriage. To this day, she seemed to be uncertain as to why he'd done it.

She'd taken a year off from the academy, had travelled, had done some of the more esoteric things one attempts in order to forget, and when she had returned, there had been an excited, somewhat over-eager young man from Mojave, California in her Intro Pan-G Ant.

Christopher smiled to himself, as Miriam had finished her song, and simply started from the beginning again. They'd reached the large accommodation complexes, and he manoeuvred her gently around one of the large statures on one of the small squares that were dotted between the tall buildings.

"I can smell summer… just a little… can't you?"

"Hmmm." He answered noncommittally; frankly, he was freezing his ass off.

He'd noticed Miriam right away. She'd been petite, pretty, with longish honey coloured hair and a smile that held some strange echoes of sadness he had not understood as a young man, but had wanted very much to figure out. But besides all that, Miriam Suthsby had the most beautiful eyes he had ever seen; slightly almond shaped, rimmed in dark lashes, and the colour of violets… he had not known such a colour even existed. And even though he'd been 23, and she'd been 38, some odd protective thing had kicked in, and he'd had to fight the urge to walk up to her in the lecture theatre and hug her every time he had Anthropology.

Oh, he'd had it bad. Crushing on a teacher like a pubescent boy, he'd found reasons to invade her office hours with inane questions. He'd ambushed her with 'accidental' meetings in the turbo lift, only to get tongue-tied and begin to talk about the weather. He'd bought her little presents for her birthday and Christmas, leaving them outside her office without a card.

And then she had gone and broken his heart by getting married again.

Edmund Taylor had been tall, handsome, English, and brilliant. He had been assigned to a Starfleet outpost on the fringes of Vulcan space in his capacity as a Science officer, and he had taken Miriam with him. There had been an outbreak of Anchilles fever on the outpost, both Miriam and her husband had contracted it; she had survived, he had not. They had been married for 14 months.

She had returned to the Academy for Christopher's third and final year. She had been 40, married three times, for a grand total of 36 months.

The first time he'd seen her again, he'd found her asleep in the library, her arms folded on a large tomb of Old and Middle English poetry. His heart had almost jumped out of his chest, his feet had gone cold, his hands clammy, and he'd had to fight the urge to take her uniform jacked, so carelessly thrown over the back of her chair, and drape it over her shoulders. He'd run from the library like someone was chasing him.

It was the long-term effects of the fever, which caused her to be constantly tired, to forget things much more easily. She played it off as slightly doddery eccentricity to her students.

Her office was covered in tiny multi-coloured pieces of sticky paper… she'd once joked to him that her brain was splattered all over her walls.

She had still been at the academy when he returned to teach. She'd been 43; he had been 28 and had just completed his first round of active duty. She didn't seem to age. There had always been a certain vulnerability about her, and that coupled with her easy laugh that seemed to always fail to hide the sadness in her eyes, her wicked sense of humour, and the fact that she was just so delicate and pretty, gave her the appearance of a girl, regardless of the fact that a few strands of silvery grey had started to appear in her honey coloured hair.

He'd tried to flirt with her, but felt foolish when she so obviously remained oblivious to his attempts. Perhaps the age difference meant that she did not see what he was doing as anything but friendly banter. He had understood that she would need time after what had happened… he had only known about her third husband at that time; they had not become friends yet. So, he had backed off; not that she would have noticed the difference.

He'd dated a girl in Engineering, an academic fellow like him, who'd had light brown hair and blue eyes; not quite honey and violets, but close enough. Even he'd known that that was somehow wrong, and had ended it. He'd dated blonds and red-heads after that, no more brunettes.

He'd asked her for a drink – friendly, as colleagues… not a date – when he was 32 and she was 47.

He'd loved talking to her, he still did. She'd somehow allowed him in, had not pretended that it was funny how she couldn't remember things, but had still amazed him by how perceptive, how clever she was. He'd felt like a fool for carrying a torch for a woman without even knowing the best things about her.

They had become friends. Christopher had gotten serious with a blond in Linguistics, but then realised to his horror that it was really her English accent that did it for him.

He'd broken it off, then gone and gotten pissed with Alexander Lennox, who just wouldn't shut up about how much he loved his Martha.

"I think I'm quite resilient." She'd told him one evening; they were having a few drinks in a small bar just off campus.

"You knock me down… I get back up. You know, that sort of thing. But once you start taking other people with you… well, that's just not right, now is it?" He'd wondered at that, but as the night had progressed, he'd finally learned the story of her three husbands, and that somehow, in a rather illogical yet not entirely delusional way, Miriam thought that she was cursed… some odd type of black widow.

"Easy come, easy go… maybe if I didn't love so easily, I wouldn't lose so easily."

Apparently she had noticed his looks, the way he seemed to still – at the age of 36 now – pop out of nowhere to accidentally run into her and ask her to lunch. She'd finally noticed, and was telling him 'no'.

She'd started calling him 'my boy' after that, as if she thought he needed reminding of the fact that she was 15 years his senior; he didn't; he knew; he just really didn't care.

And so they had gone on for another decade and a half, and he had her friendship, and that was something.

He hadn't quite been prepared for how much that damn flyer would muck him about, though.

He'd gone drinking with her, or for lunch or dinner… as friends. But suddenly he'd found himself stuck in the tiny garage of his summer home with Miriam in slacks and a T-shirt, her tongue poking out as she tried to snap a wire with a small set of pliers… and that strange sense of protectiveness had come over him again.

Her hair was grey now; she had never tried to slow the signs of ageing as most other women did. And even if she had, he could not imagine that her original colour of dark honey could be recreated or could be bought in a bottle. He would never forget how she looked when she gave Alec's eulogy; bruised and almost haggard with grief, her silvery hair in a mane of knots… she'd looked a little mad, and still somehow beautiful to him.

And even though there was no more honey brown in her hair, the glints of white and silver seemed to make her eyes all the more noticeable, they, at least, were still the colour of violets.

They had reached her complex now.

"I'll take you up."

"Don't be ridiculous, Christopher, I'm a big girl now, I can operate a turbo lift all on my lonesome." She was grinning at him, the wrinkles around her eyes and mouth still rather unpronounced for a woman of her age.

"Alright then."

He leaned down and placed a small kiss on her forehead, then did not move away, but simply looked at her intently. He knew he was doing it again, putting it out there, pleading a little with his eyes when he knew he couldn't with his words.

There was a brief moment of indecision, and she looked conflicted. Then she smiled her sad little smile at him and said:

"Thank you, and good night, my boy."

He was left telling the closed door:

"Good night."

My young love said to me,

"My mother won't mind,

And my father won't slight you for your lack of kind."

And she laid her hand on me

and this she did say,

"Oh, it will not be long, love, till our wedding-day."

And she went away from me

and moved through the fair,

And fondly I watched her move here and move there.

And then she went onward,

just one star awake

Like the swan in the evening moves over the lake.

Last night she came to me,

my dead love came in,

So softly she came

that her feet made no din.

And she laid her hand on me and this she did say,

"Oh, it will not be long, love, till our wedding-day."

lyrics by Padraic Colum

A/N: Here's a link for the song; it's sung by Anne Briggs, and is the original, as in first ever, recording of the song. The lyrics I've provided are a little different, as they are the version I grew up with. (yea, I do remember that I grew up in Austria, but my dad was into folk... figures.) It's on grooveshark, just copy and paste and take out the spaces, then go to the fifteenth song from the top, the one that says Anne Briggs, duh; enjoy:

#/ search/ songs/?query= She%20moves%20through%20the% 20fair