One hand gingerly held the cup as John stood in the center of the room. His mind fuzzy from the drink that Aeryn had given him. Looking at his other hand which held a flask, John tried to recall what she had called it, but the name failed to come to him.
"We need a little toast to commemorate today's events," he mumbled.
Lifting his cup in the air to an audience of his own imagining, he thought to himself, 'I stand before you a changed man. This man was not born of innocence, but violence and a will to survive. Natural forces war within me each hour, each second of the day since I arrived. All I ever wanted is or rather was lost to me.
Can I return to the way I was? Do I want to? Yes, the answer is yes. At least partially, if I go back to who I was I'll have learned nothing....'
"John, what are you doing?"
Turning around John saw Aeryn walk into the room. His eyes followed her as she sat down and leaned back against the bed.
"Nothing really," John answered as he sat down next to her and placed the cup and flask within reach.
The quiet of the room and strength of the drink made his head spin slightly. "Huh... Stark." Picking up the cup once more he felt as if he were going backward in time and the idea scared him. Would he, Could he do it all over again?
He heard Aeryn's soft inquiry, "Hmm."
Gesturing with the cup still in his hand, he said quietly, "Everything old is new again. Except the old thing's gettin' really old."
Taking a drink, he swallows down the burning liquid and sets down the cup. 'I sit before you a changed man...' he thinks once more.
"Hi... Honey." He can't help the little laugh that escapes him. "Huh. Guess what I did at work today?