DISCLAIMER: I own nothing but my own name.
SPOILERS: Spoilers for Season One, then we go off script and into a possible future. Love, angst, introspection, and spy stuff.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To spheeris1[at]yahoo.com
The Two of Us In the Unknown
You trace the contours of this bruise, the one left to darken on her side, and she shivers and she swats your hand away. You lean down and kiss her lips and she smiles into you. You can still taste the sweat of wherever she has been, whatever she has been doing, and your mind drifts for a moment maybe there was a fight, perhaps they did not go quietly into that not-so-good night but she brings you back to the present with a teasing bite to your bottom lip.
Back to this bed. Back to this room.
Back to her bare torso, pale skin.
Back to where you always want to be.
The winter is so long in London. Cold but never cold enough. Damp but never covered in snow. Sometimes, if you stare long enough, the fog looks like clouds of ice hanging over your head and if you could touch it, it would shatter down on your head.
You blow your hair out of your face it's falling out of the bun you put it into, straying and annoying you and you keep moving this sander over these wooden floors. Sanding and then staining. Staining and then sleeping on the couch. Sleeping and then waking up at ungodly hours to check your emails, to trace patterns and find leads, to take your orders and then pass them along.
I miss you.
Written in the back of this book, sent by post, a battered copy of 'Journey By Moonlight' and you've never read it, so you'll settle into its pages later.
And no, she doesn't sign her name. And no, she doesn't tell you where she is, not really the brat. And no, she won't be coming to your house any time soon your lovely, old home. And no, you don't go chasing after her unless there is work to be done no matter what she's feeling, what she's wanting.
I miss you, too.
No matter what you might be feeling or wanting, too.
Sometimes, you watch her clean up, watch her wipe blood off of her face. It looks so wrong and so right on her, a smattering of red on her cheeks, a scarlet brushstroke on her brow. She catches the reflection of your concentrated stare in the mirror and smirks at you.
"Oh Eve, always wanting to sneak a peek..."
You roll your eyes and toss the file down onto the table nearest to her. She doesn't stop watching you, but you are already turning around, already walking away.
"Why don't you stay, hmm? We can talk while I shower."
"I'm going to be late for my flight."
"So? Be late."
"Your work might be done for the night, but mine is not."
You've just reached the door and suddenly there she is, right behind you, and you hate how it still makes you anxious even after everything but you rein in that flutter of tension and you turn around into her body because she has left you no room. Personal space isn't something she thinks about during times like these, after a kill; she's caught in a swirl of her own power and the nature of mortality and so on and so forth.
She's told you a little bit about it, what she thinks when she kills someone.
You've decoded and analyzed the rest, it's part of your work, it's kind-of your life now.
Your voice is trained to be bored. You've worked hard on the sound of it, the inflections.
"Stay with me. For a bit."
Her eyes are lit up, embers banked deep and flames rising, and you can smell smoke on her clothes, ashes and death, and yet she is so alive so very very alive in front of you and you don't want to enjoy being with her like this, you like it better when the ground is even between you both.
You reach up and slide the pad of your thumb over her cheek, catching color as you go, and she topples into you, all hot desire and need and eagerness, and what's one more night in Vienna anyway?
What's wrong with giving in if she's giving in as well?
"Oh, hello, Eve, how are you? I am doing well, just thought of you and had to call..."
It's very proper English, very posh. She's so good with languages, with accents. A master of disguise, really, but in the simplest of ways. And you sigh as you prop yourself up against the kitchen counter, bottle of wine open and yesterday's leftovers heating in the microwave.
"...I'm sat by the ocean, it's terribly late, and you know, I should be sleeping but what's a girl to do when she's alone, by the sea, but reach out to good friends like you..."
You strain to hear the waves behind her voice. You close your eyes and picture it her shoes off, coastal breeze toying with her hair, face serene in the darkness. You grip the phone tightly in your hand, to keep yourself from stopping this silly message and calling her back.
"...oh, you'd love it here, Eve... you really would..."
The microwave beeps at you and you open your eyes again and a chill rolls through your body the damn heater has gone out again and you put the phone down, back to reality, back to your cold house and your leftover food and a cheap bottle of white. Back to paperwork and notes, back to whatever political upheaval comes next, back to saving the world.
...you'd love it here, Eve...
You eat and you work and you tuck this woolen blanket around you. You curl up on this couch and feel your eyelids start to droop.
...you really would...
"I know... god, I know..."
Sometimes, a knot forms in your gut when she doesn't show up. She's always late. You're used to that, but it is different when something goes wrong. Like a cat, she's got nine goddamn lives, but when one day turns into two and when people start calling for updates that you cannot give and you pace the hotel room floor and you can't relax well, by the time she waltzes in, you want to smack her and kiss her at the same time.
She laughs at you. She sinks onto your bed.
She looks unharmed. She looks refreshed.
"Out with it. Now."
She falters, just a tad, at the tone you direct towards her a child in trouble, a whisper of a pout upon her mouth. Oh, you want to hit her more than kiss her, right this second, you want to strangle her.
"A policeman might have shown up, unexpectedly. I took care of it."
"Took care of it how?"
You make a call, giving information and asking for some as well. It's going to be a long day, making sure that her version of 'clean' is actually clean enough. She is good at what she does, of course, but that doesn't mean she is perfect. No one is, after all.
"You have a room, just down the hall."
You aren't inviting her to stay. You are angry, for more reasons that you care to think about, and she knows it, she knows and she understands.
The games are over, the ones you both used to play the ones that hurt you, that hurt her, that hurt so many others, too and neither one of you has to mess around anymore. You both have lives that go on without the other, even with all the ways the two of you overlap. You get that things are dangerous, you get that this isn't normal, you get it and so does she and she leaves your room and you wait for the click before you start breathing again.
The water is warm, no longer hot, but it still feels good.
Good enough to not get up yet, head laid back and book long forgotten as you drift off, thoughts like loose string you get a hold of one, then it floats away again.
You might have fallen asleep there, you might have drown, too, but you don't have time to ponder that because you hear it faint but there the sound of someone downstairs.
And you are not like you once were.
You have weapons everywhere these days. Knives you can wield. Guns you can shoot. A few more things, innocent otherwise but deadly if need be, and you tilt your head, the bathwater moving around you slowly. You listen and there it is, soft but there, a step that creaks. Better than any motion-sensor.
You slip out as quietly as you can and you unhook the knife that rests under the edge of this paint-chipped tub and you press into the wall behind the door and your muscles are ready, as ready as they'll ever be you've not had to actually use them, not like this, but you are ready to... if you have to...
There's a knock on the door. And you freeze.
"I tried calling first, just so you know. And then I was in town, so I just showed up. Don't try to kill me, okay? Recovery is so boring."
You don't even think about it, you fling the door open to find her standing there, and your heart is in your throat needless anticipation buzzing inside of you, beating so hard it makes your head hurt and her smile, which is pleased, falls away from her lips and you watch her features darken as she takes you in, gaze trailing over you like
Oh, that's right. You're naked and wet and holding a knife.
"Go get my robe. Room next to this one."
She glances up at you then and everything in her eyes says that you don't need a robe, not now, not with her here, and you like it you like how much she wants you but you turn the knife around in your hand and press the handle into her chest.
Her smile returns then, brighter than the sun, and she makes a show of bowing her head in acquiescence.
One last up-and-down from her and then she is bringing your robe to you, watching you wrap yourself up and then following you back down to the kitchen. You offer her something to drink and she declines, you offer her food and she happily agrees, and you realize that she is here in London, for the first time in ages, maybe it hasn't been since the beginning of all this.
She's here, in your half-finished home. With all your tools and books. With all your accumulated things, boxes still packed and a tarp still draped over the dining table. With your maps and notebooks of killers, of murder and mayhem. She's in there, somewhere, written down in blue ink the one who led you down this twisted primrose path. Not exactly the woman sitting near you now, but still somehow the same.
She tells you about her latest job. You ask about a few details.
She stretches and yawns. You turn on the television.
She kisses you. You kiss her in return.
I miss you.
I miss you, too.
She wraps her legs around you. You press your hips into her.
She tugs on your hair. You slide your tongue into her mouth.
She is so wet, so warm. You are so, so doomed.
You'd love it here, you really would.
I know, god, I know.
She comes with your fingers circling her clit, pressing down harder the more she rises up to meet you, and you ache, you ache so much that you think you will go mad, and her moan fills up this room, fills up this half-finished house, fills you up, fills you right up, and you barely give her any time to catch up before you are shifting onto her thigh and grinding against her, like a goddamn teenager in heat, but it doesn't matter, not with her hands finding you and guiding you, encouraging you, her voice hot in your ears "...yes, baby, please don't stop..." and there, at the edge of your mind, is that thought you keep shoving around, keep shutting up, keep turning away until it leaves you alone, at least for a while...
Stay with me. For a bit.
...jesus, you'd stay with her forever if she'd ask it, if you could, if they were anyone else in the world but who they are. And you shudder and shake and her nails are in your skin and her lips are on your lips and when you look at her, you are back to where you always want to be.
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