That night Tucker and Jessica were once again at the inn. They were sitting downstairs along with other people who were there to have a good night. As it happened to be a travelling musical group were staying at the inn and for a small fee they performed. The songs that they sang were ones that many of the regulars knew and could have a singalong with. Even Jessica was singing along with a couple of the songs, normally she didn't like to make herself noticed but she was in a good mood that night. She didn't have the best singing voice in Angleland but no one seemed to mind since everything had all been in good fun. There were even some men that wanted to compare themselves with her when she stood up at her full height. Since she was in such a good mood she allowed them to this and all were shocked with just how much taller she was than them. It was something that they would never forget.
Despite all of the fun that was going on Tucker sat down at the table and seemed to keep himself to himself. The thought of him having sex with Gwen the previous night was replaying over and over again in his head. He kept trying to tell himself that it was to help Jessica earn her freedom but the truth was that his act had been pointless. Even though he had done what Gwen had wanted she was going to go back on her word any way. He had been able to convince her to confess but he felt that he could have done it without having to have sex with Gwen. He felt like he had betrayed her in the worst way possible. He didn't know whether to tell her and possibly ruin their relationship or if she would understand and forgive him.
Tucker was in a world of his own and he didn't notice Jessica sitting down on the table. She placed a large ale right in front of him and for a few moments he didn't even notice. She had to wave her hand in his face for him to finally notice her.
"Hey Earth to Tucker," said Jessica as she continued to wave her hand in front of him. Her hand was bigger than his head and it was just another benefit to Jessica's size. She saw him almost jump and it had been almost like he was asleep.
"W-What?" replied Tucker with much confusion in his voice. He had not been paying attention whatsoever.
"You're kinda zoning out on me there." She put on a smile to make him see if it would make him more alert.
"Sorry I'm just a little tired." He took a drink out of the ale he already had, he couldn't bear to look at Jessica who had no idea about the inner turmoil that he was going through at that point in time.
"Are you alright?" She held onto his hand to show that she was there for him. "If there's anything you need to tell me I'm all ears."
"I-I'm fine." He pulled his hand away from her which she did find odd but she didn't want to mention anything about it. "I just didn't get too much sleep last night. I was really worried about you." He hoped that this lie would be enough to convince Jessica that everything was fine but the truth was he was trying to convince himself more than her. "I'm just glad everything worked out."
"Believe me so am I. This body wasn't designed to fit in one of those small prison cells. I couldn't even stand up." She laughed a little and she hoped that he would laugh along with her but he remained quiet. "Come on lighten up Tucker, I was cleared of all charges and we're both free once again. Why don't we celebrate with a dance maybe? That is of course if you don't mind dancing with a woman who's taller than you." Once again she hoped that this would get a laugh but there was still nothing.
"Maybe next time Jess." He gave a yawn which was pretty convincing and he stretched himself. "Sorry but I'm really tired, I think I'll head up back to the room and have a good sleep."
"Ok, I'll see you later." There was a small amount of concern in her voice as she watched Tucker get up and go back up to their room. She sat there for a few moments thinking, she was concerned about him but she thought that he was just tired. She imagined that he had been worrying about her for all that time and it had prevented him from going to sleep. She was feeling a little tired too but she still wanted to have a little more enjoyment before she went to bed.
For the next hour Jessica remained where she was. A man had heard that she had beaten a well-rounded drinker in a fair contest. He wanted to try his hand at beating her in a drinking contest but the results were the same as Jessica was able to drink him under the table. Despite the fact that she had drunk so much ale she still didn't seem to be drunk. It was one advantage to her size although now she was feeling tired.
Much to the disappointment of the men she had to say her goodbyes and quietly she made her way up the stairs to the room she shared with Tucker. It was quite hard for someone her size to move quietly but with great care that was exactly what she did. She ducked to get through the door and she saw Tucker already in bed. She smiled a little before getting into the bed and wrapping her arms around him.
For Jessica she felt great comfort and safety being with Tucker. He had always been there for her when she had needed him most and for that reason she would always ensure his own safety. She felt that she was truly lucky to have someone like Tucker with her and she would never trade him for anyone else. It didn't take long for her to fall asleep with a smile on her face while Tucker on the other hand slept with a face of worry.
Through the night Tucker had unpleasant dreams but none of them were about telling Jessica the truth about what had happened the previous night. Instead they were general unpleasant dreams that didn't seem to have too much meaning or rhyme. All it did was give him an uncomfortable night sleep and when he woke up the next morning he was still feeling tired.
The first thing that Tucker tried to do was get out of bed but this was impossible since Jessica had her arms wrapped around him. He didn't want to wake her up since she seemed so peaceful while she was asleep but he did think about if she would be the same if he told her the truth. For now he wanted to keep his night with Gwen a secret so that their relationship could remain intact.
Tucker had to wait a full hour before Jessica finally woke up. She grumbled a little and then stretched herself. She didn't have any serious ill effects from drinking so much the previous night. The only thing that she felt was a strong need to relieve herself which was pretty moderate in comparison to other people who would drink heavily.
After a few minutes both Jessica and Tucker could hear a loud growling sound. Thankfully they were in no danger as it was simply Jessica's stomach. She just gave it a small pat and decided that it was best to have some breakfast. To save a little bit of money the pair decided to eat food that they had brought with them. This mainly consisted of fruits and oats but Jessica did down more than a litre of milk.
She didn't want to say it but she thought that she was experiencing another natural growth spurt and her body was craving for the calcium rich milk. When she finished drinking the milk she let out a loud belch that caught both her and Tucker by surprise. Her face went a little red in embarrassment since it wasn't very lady like. She was just glad that there was no one around to see it. One thing that she did notice was that Tucker was hardly eating his breakfast. She could see that he had little interest in his food and once again this caused her to become concerned.
"Are you sure you're alright Tucker?" asked Jessica with genuine concern. "You've barely touched your breakfast."
"Yeah," replied Tucker. "I'm just feeling a little under the weather that's all." He tried to smile at her to show that he was fine.
"If you want me to I can send you to a healer." She thought it might be something more serious than what he was making out to be.
"No really I'm fine. I don't need to see a healer." He put on another smile to show that he was fine and Jessica looked at him a little. She could tell when he was lying and she could see that right now. She had known him for so long that she could tell when he was being honest with her and when he was lying. Now she could tell that he was lying but right now she didn't want to push it unless it got to a point where she thought that she had no other choice. "See I'm eating my breakfast." He picked up one of the apples and took a bite out of it. "See, it's good."
"Please don't talk with your mouth full." For now she would keep quiet and let events play out.
"Oh sorry." He gulped down what was in his mouth."
For the next couple of days Tucker and Jessica continued to see some of the sights of Royal City but eventually they knew that they had to move on. They stayed in the inn for an extra night since it was raining and they didn't want to particularly travel while it rained. Unfortunately the gold that it took to get this extra night was just about what they could afford but not much more than that.
During this time Jessica noticed that Tucker was becoming more and more distant. She thought that it wasn't an illness that was causing this but that there was something mentally wrong with her best friend turned lover. She had no idea that he was guilt ridden and that his thoughts about whether telling her or not was eating him up inside. He barely slept and ate very little food and Jessica even noticed that he was feeling cold whenever she hugged him. Each time she asked him whether he was fine he would always give her the same answer. She was still waiting to see what happened but she had already decided that if he didn't improve soon she would intervene.
The morning that Tucker and Jessica were set to leave royal city it was a glorious sunny day although the streets were still a little damp after the shower that had taken place the previous night. There was some mist in the air but overall it was a very pleasant morning. There were already people going about their daily lives when Jessica and Tucker entered the streets. The day before they had bought some food that would last them for a short time but it had taken up the rest of their money. They had decided that they would find ways of making money as they continued on with their quest.
Jessica had noticed that Tucker hadn't seemed to have improved at all. He was still barely eating and he was so tired that he was somewhat struggling to walk. She still wanted to send him to a healer but he refused to stating that he was fine. Jessica knew that she could just force him to go but then it would undermine him and might even create a rift between the two. She remembered when he was having a sword fight in Lake Town and how she had intervened when he had not been happy with it. For now she would let him nurse his manhood unless she felt that he was in real danger.
Before leaving Royal City the pair had to go through another checkpoint but this one was different to the previous checkpoint. The one before had been the west checkpoint where this one was the east checkpoint. The pair needed to travel east to find the next trial which would then lead them to their ultimate destination.
The man at the checkpoint had heard about Jessica's trial and was somewhat glad to be rid of her. He had heard that she was found innocent but he didn't particularly like people who had what he considered to be unnatural abilities. He thought that the city was now safer with her gone.
Both of them were somewhat glad that they were leaving Royal City, the experience had not been as enjoyable as they had hoped. It seemed to be their way in life now that whenever they went anywhere they would have abnormal experiences. There had been a couple of times where they had stopped somewhere with nothing out of the ordinary taking place but this was few and far between.
As soon as Jessica far enough away from Royal City she grew to her full size and gently picked up Tucker. It was the first time she had been her full size for over a week and although she didn't want to admit it she was more comfortable at this size than any other. She didn't really know why but she felt more at home being at her full size rather than be restricted down to eight foot. If she could she would stay at her full size all the time but she would be viewed as a monster along with other problems like food and water. Also if she wanted to have children like she said she highly doubted that she could become pregnant if she stayed at her full size.
Even in Jessica's hand and surrounded by the softness of her flesh Tucker still felt uneasy. Due to his lack of sleep he felt really tired and just lay down on the hand. At least he felt warm and safe in the knowledge that Jessica was watching him. He couldn't help but drift to sleep but once again his dreams were unpleasant. They were still too random for him to make sense of and he just slept.
Tucker was asleep for a couple of hours and he awoke to find Jessica sitting down and looking at him. He wasn't exactly sure why they had stopped but he could see that she had a small smile on her face. He did yawn but even though he had been to sleep he still felt extremely tired. He slowly sat up and then looked up to the gentle giantess who still beamed down at him.
"Hi there sleepy head," said Jessica. She knew that he still wasn't feeling too well so she thought that this might make him feel better. "Has anyone told you that you're the cutest little thing when you're asleep?"
"Yeah you have," replied Tucker as he yawned. "Several times."
"Have I?" She put her hand over her mouth and gave a girly laugh. "Silly me, but I wouldn't say it if it wasn't true."
"Alright." This was the only word he could mutter before his guilt returned to him. He still didn't have the heart to tell her what happened and if he could live with it she would never know. "Why have we stopped?"
"Well this is a little embarrassing." She gave a somewhat embarrassed look as she looked down at Tucker. "I can't remember where I'm supposed to go. I was going to ask you earlier but I didn't want to wake you."
"Ok let me look." He took the map out of his satchel and rolled it out. There he could see the location of the third trial which was just outside of Calf Heath. It was almost directly east from their location but they would most likely come across Shareshill before reaching their destination. "You've just gotta keep going east until you reach the coastline, the third trial isn't far from there."
"Still a few days travelling though." Even from her vantage point she could still see enough of the map to tell that they had some way to go. "Oh well that just gives us more time to snuggle on the nights."
"Y-yeah right." There was some hesitation in his voice and Jessica found this to be very odd. He would normally be excited to getting a little intimate with her but now he seemed to be shuddering at the thought.
"Are you sure that everything's alright?" She was becoming more and more concerned with him every day. "You're not your usual self."
"It's nothing, I'm still a little tired." He was still trying to act like everything was alright but it didn't seem like it was going to work. He could see the stern look on Jessica's face and he knew exactly what it meant.
"Tucker I love you with all my heart but darn it you don't half annoy me when you try and lie to me." Quickly she sat down on the ground, she did this so quickly that the sound of her sitting down could probably be heard for miles.
"What are you doing?" He had a somewhat confused look upon his face and he began to get a little scared.
"I'm not walking another step before you tell me what exactly is going on with you." He tried to speak but Jessica placed a finger on his mouth. "And if you say that you're fine I swear I will throw you in the river and watch you struggle back to the bank. I've known you almost my entire life and I know when you're alright and when you're not. There's something eating away at you, I saw you like that years ago when you broke Mr Tomlin's wheelbarrow."
"But Jessica." He wanted to try and say that he was fine but again he felt Jessica's enormous fingertip push slightly onto his mouth.
"No buts Mr Martel, I'm not moving until you tell me what's wrong. Whatever it is I'm sure that it's not that bad. Just please tell me so that I can help you, that's all I've ever wanted to do." He could see the sincerity in her eyes but he still wasn't sure how she would react to his news.
"There is something." His words were fairly quiet and Jessica did have some difficulties hearing him.
"Then spit it out I'm all ears." She sat there expectantly for whatever Tucker needed to tell her. She could tell that what was afflicting him was of the mind rather than the body. She knew him too well.
"I-I." He was getting choked up on his words and he didn't know exactly how he was going to tell her that he had sex with Gwen. She had taken from him what he had wanted to give to Jessica. It was a fact that he couldn't change no matter how much he wished it but for now he knew that he had to tell her. He wouldn't be able to live with her if she didn't know the truth. "I did a bad thing."
"What was it?" There was genuine concern in her voice not just for him but for herself. She thought that it could lead them to trouble in the future if whatever bad thing Tucker had done could come back to haunt them. "You didn't kill any of the guards did you?" At first she thought that this was the answer.
"No something worse." He took a deep breath as he composed himself. "I betrayed you Jessica."
"Betrayed me?" She was confused for a moment and she tried to smile to show that everything was fine. "You didn't betray me, you saved me from being convicted for a crime I didn't commit."
"Don't you wonder how I got Gwen to confess to her crimes?" He didn't have the heart to look at her as her expression changed. Rather than the happy face it looked like she was in deep thought.
"Did you ask nicely?" This was the only answer she could come up with at that moment in time.
"Yes I did but it took a lot more than asking nicely to make her confess. She told me to do something that I wasn't particularly comfortable with but I did it so that I could earn your freedom."
"What did you do Tucker?" There was a very serious tone in her voice as she knew that she wasn't going to like the answer that he was going to give her. All she could do was wait for his answer.
"I-I had sex with her." His words were quick and he hoped that she would not understand him very well and think that he said something else. She remained quiet for a few moments before speaking.
"You did what?" Her voice was slightly louder and it made Tucker a little afraid to keep speaking but he knew that she would know that he was holding back. He had no choice but to keep going.
"I had sex with Gwen." A tear rolled down his face. "She promised that she would confess if I had sex with her. She took from me something I was more than willing to give to you when you were ready."
"You had sex with her?" There was some sorrow in her voice now and it was hard for her to hear what he was saying.
"If there were any other way I would have done it, believe me I would have. This was the last thing I would have wanted but it was the only way to earn your freedom. I love you more than life itself."
"But that didn't stop you." Her words had become harsh and for Tucker it seemed like his worst nightmare was about to happen.
"But Jessica..." He wanted to defend his words but he felt Jessica's fingertip once again touch his mouth.
"No buts Tucker. You can try and rationalise it as much as you want but the bottom line is that we're a couple and you had sex with another woman. I don't if she was a demi-goddess or a common whore. It's all the same in my view, but I sense there's more to it than that Tucker."
"W-Well..." He wasn't sure whether he should keep going but he knew that nothing was getting passed her. "When we were finished she refused to confess so I had to convince her otherwise."
"So you're telling me that you fucked her for nothing." He could tell now that she was furious just with the fact that she swore. She rarely swore and only did it when she was extremely angry. Although she wasn't showing on the outside, inside she was completely enraged.
"No of course not." He tried to defend himself but he didn't know exactly how he was going to do that.
"Then you're telling me that after she had sex with you she willingly agreed to confess without you having to convince her?"
"Then it was for nothing." She interrupted him before he could properly answer the question. "I know you Tucker, you're smart enough to have convinced her without having to have sex with her. I trusted you Tucker and you've betrayed that trust." She then quickly lowered her hand down to the ground. "Get off of my hand right now." With some reluctance Tucker did step off of her hand and no sooner had he done this she quickly raised her hand once again and stood up to her full height. "You can continue your quest by yourself because as of right now we're through!" There was much anger in her voice and she turned around and walked away. Tucker wanted to go after her but he knew that he didn't have a chance in hell of catching up with her.
"Wait Jessica!" shouted Tucker at the top of his lungs. "Where are you going?" He did move towards her but she was moving away from him much quicker than he would have liked.
"I'm going back to Morgan," snapped Jessica with a lot of hurt in her voice. "Goodbye Mr Martel."
With that Jessica picked up the pace and within a couple of minutes she was already too far from Tucker to hear him. She was fighting back the tears as she was hurt in a way that truly caused her pain. Her mind was too shook up to truly comprehend everything that had just happened.
All Jessica did was continue to walk and she paid almost no attention to anything around her. It was only when she was miles away from Tucker did she finally break down and cry. Her heart had been broken by the man she loved the most and it almost seemed to be like the end of the world to her. She knew that with her size it would be difficult to find any other man who would care for her like he had.
She just sat by an old and mighty oak tree and shrank down to her minimum size. She sobbed her heart out and she was just glad that Tucker wasn't there to see it. She felt that he didn't deserve to give him that satisfaction. Right now all she wanted was to be alone and right now that was exactly what she was getting, for how long it would last would be up to her.
Tucker stood where he was some miles away and considered his next move. He wasn't sure whether he should try and go to Jessica or if he should carry on to the third trial. He didn't want to abandon his friend but he knew that right now he was the last person that she wanted to see. He felt that she needed her space and he felt terrible for what he had done. If he could go back in time and change things he would have gladly done that but unfortunately that was something that he couldn't do.
For now Tucker like Jessica some distance away sat down and began to think about what had happened. He felt that there was something that he should have done differently but the truth was he didn't. If history repeated itself he would probably have done the same thing under the circumstances. Now he would have to live with it for the rest of his life and without Jessica by his side it might not be long.
There was one thing that Tucker felt and that was hunger. He had barely eaten due to his guilt and although he was upset he still needed food. Unfortunately Jessica had been carrying the food and when she had stormed off she had taken the food with her.
Right now the only option that Tucker had was to try and find his own food but that was going to be a bit of a problem. The trees around him were oak trees and so the only food that they provided were acorns. These would not be sufficient enough to sustain him so he had to find another source of food.
Unfortunately Tucker was miles away from any inn and he lacked money so even if he did find one he would not have been able to buy anything. He had to rely on his own survival skills and he tried to remember things that he had been taught.
One thing that Tucker did come across was a small patch of mushrooms that were growing between a couple of trees. He had memorised which mushrooms were poisonous so he began to inspect them carefully. These mushrooms were green and had white spots on them, he knew that the white mushrooms with green spots were poisonous but he hadn't heard if the other way around so he was pretty sure that they were safe. Even if they were poisonous he didn't really care. He had just lost the most precious thing that he had so losing his life would have made no difference.
Tucker quickly broke off one of the mushrooms and took a bite out of it. He was surprised to find out tasty it was and so he didn't he hesitate in eating the entire thing. Almost immediately he began to feel strange and he began to stagger a little from side to side. He blinked several times to try and figure out exactly what was going on. At first he thought that the mushroom had indeed been poisonous but he knew that he didn't feel like he was dying. If anything he was feeling happy and the dismal world around him was beginning to become bright and colourful.