DISCLAIMER: Law & Order: Special Victims Unit is the property of NBC and Dick Wolf, and being used without permission or intention of profit.
AUTHOR'S NOTE: This series is a continuation/parallel to the Desktop Confessionals series. Although you don't need to read that series to understand this one, you may as well if you're bored.
SERIES: Part three of the While You Are Gone series, following Confessions in the Dark and The Substitutes.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

Against the Wind

I'm up before the alarm even goes off. I always am. In fact, I don't even know why I bother with the damn thing anymore. I glance at the clock out of habit before sliding out of bed. I can't stop the sigh that escapes as I slip on my running clothes. Another night without sleeping. Another night without you. Three years has gone by since you've left, and one would think that I'd be able to manage better than I have, but I haven't. I can't. I've tried.

I pull my jogging shoes out of the closet and slip them on. A moment later I've made my way into the living room and have donned my gloves and beanie as well. I take a look in the mirror and let out a small chuckle. Why anyone would go running in this weather is totally beyond you, I know that. Yet, here I am, full snow gear on and all, ready to head out into the pre-dawn city.

The weather outside is bitter. Colder than I remember the City ever being. I can't remember the last time I've seen the sun. It may have been weeks ago for all I know. The snow has not stopped for days and I shake the chill out of my bones as I do my warm up exercises in the park. I wipe my nose and pull my hat down lower. Today seems even colder than the day before. You never understood why I put myself through this running hell every morning. On days like today, I question my logic as well.

As I start off down my usual path, I feel the wind start to pick up, causing my nose to run even more than it was before. I wipe quickly and speed up my pace. I round the second corner of my path and realize I'm running against the wind, causing my body to chill more, my pace to slow. I pause mentally for a moment and contemplate the realization. Running against the wind. Yeah, that's me. I've always done that, haven't I?

I even my pace off and continue my inner musings. My whole life has been an uphill battle. From day one I've been a challenge to myself, to my mother. The path of least resistance has never been the one I've taken. I'm always up for a challenge, even if that challenge breaks me in the end. You were a challenge, weren't you? No, that's right, you weren't. I tried to make you such. Make you the unattainable high-society woman that I would have to seduce and woo. But you were nothing like that. You were.you. And you were perfect. And when we finally did come together, it wasn't about challenges or victories, it was about just being who we are... together. And I loved you for that. I still love you for that.

Right now I'm in the midst of another challenge. The new year is approaching quickly and I've left facing the question of whether I've been waiting for something that will never come back. And if it doesn't, what do I do then? Am I so stuck in the past that I can't see the future without you? I never thought I'd be the type of person that would be so wholeheartedly dependent on someone. The reality is, I'm not dependent on you. I can function perfectly fine without you here. But, I function so much better, so completely, with you by my side. With the new year approaching I've got to face the challenge of dealing with what I feel and what I know. I am so deeply in love with you that if I just went with my feelings alone I'd wait for you forever. Never moving on, just dealing with life until you came back. And I know that I cannot allow that to happen. I cannot allow my life to pass by waiting for you when you may never even be allowed to come back. And, if I want to be truthful enough, I have to acknowledge the fact that if you are given the option to, you may not want to come back. And if you do, you may not want me. I may have been waiting these past three years, putting my life on an emotional hold, when you haven't done the same.

I gradually slow my pace down until I've come to a complete stop. I bend at the waist and put my hands on my knees while I catch my breath. I pull my hat off and wipe the slight moisture from my brow. The wind slams into me forcefully and chills my ears immediately. I can't do this. I pull my hat down over my head again as I start to walk back to my apartment. So many thoughts fill my head. So many feelings fill my heart. I don't know which way to go anymore. Do I hold onto the past hoping that it will become my future? Do I let my future waste away based on a hope from the past? Or do I try to move on knowing that someday my past may come back wanting me, and I'll have nothing to give? Yes, this is a new challenge for me. Almost too much of a challenge. And, as I enter the apartment and see your picture on the bookshelf, I realize it's a challenge I'm not ready for, and probably never will be.

The End

Return to Law & Order Fiction

Return to Main Page