In which Diana learns the immateriality of memories.

Diana turned over lazily and snuggled up to the warm body next to her. "A...Geoff," she murmured. Shit. She had almost said the wrong name. She never did that. It was probably the result of a too rapid change of bed companions. Geoff was the one she wanted to be with, it was the dream of a year and a half come true. The other name was only on her lips out of habit.

* * * * *

"What happened to Adrian, by the way?" Geoff asked over his granola.

"He's back in Seattle," Diana said casually. "What should have happened to him?"

"You had something going with him, didn't you?"

Diana finished chewing a mouthful of granola before she replied. "What is it to you if I did or I didn't?" It came out more aggressively than she intended.

"You know, Diana, I've been through this business of being your back door man once before."

"You can come through any door you want." Diana looked at him pointedly over the rim of her coffee cup.

"Have I ousted this Adrian fellow?"

"Your granola's getting soggy."

"If I have, I don't think it's quite fair," Geoff pursued.

Diana shook her head. "Don't you think it's a little late for that? Looks like you're about to pull the same old stunt on me."

"What do you mean?"

"You played back door man years ago and you didn't think it was quite fair. And it suits you just fine because that way you can tumble into my bed and right back out again, no strings attached. You should get to know Mercy."

"Come on, I'm not that bad."

"No, I mean Mercy, my friend Mercy. She's married. That would be the perfectly impossible situation for you."

"Okay, so maybe you're right about me, but it's not very different from what you're doing with Adrian now, is it?"

"At least I was honest. I never promised him anything. I never claimed to feel anything like this undying love bullshit."

"Neither did I."

This temporarily threw Diana off track, and she sought renewed inspiration in her coffee cup. The coffee being lukewarm, however, the inspiration was minimal. "Well, it sure seemed like it," she complained, wincing at the mediocrity of the accusation.

"Maybe that's what you wanted to see in it?" Geoff suggested, lifting intellectually ironic eyebrows above the rim of his glasses.

"Even if it is, you can't deny that you used my situation to keep from getting involved."

"It seems we found exactly what we needed in each other."

Diana looked up from her meditations of her mug and across the breakfast mess at her ex- and present lover. The charm of his intense green gaze diverted her from her preoccupation with herself. As self-indulgence receded, humor returned, and she directed a lop-sided smile at the rematerialized memory sitting at her table. "A prairie dog, that's what you are. You scurry up, take a couple of sniffs, and then scurry away again."

Geoff laughed appreciatively and took her hand between the bowls of granola. "So we weren't entirely fair to each other. So what else is new? I'm here now, aren't I?"

"And you'll be going again in a week."

Geoff shrugged. "I'm not promising anything."

"You never did."

"True enough." Geoff let go of Diana's hand and took another bite of his whole earth cereal. "This granola's soggy."

"I told you so."