Title: "Till Death Do Us Part"
Author: monimala
Fandom: "General Hospital"
Rating/Classification: AC, language, sexual situations, angst, Jason/Brenda.
Disclaimer: I don't own them, etc.
Summary: Takes place around the time of Brenda and Jason's arraignment for the murder of Alcazar. What if they're not just playing at marriage? What if they're not playing at all?

When she wakes up screaming, he vaults out of bed and into her room... letting her seeking arms slip around his neck and her face fall into the curve of his throat as she shakes herself out of the nightmare. It's always the same... "Death penalty...Luis...don't want to die, Jason...don't...oh God..." And it's always the same when she pulls back, wiping at her snotty nose and her reddened eyes, spitting, "Don't be nice to me!"

"I'm not," he tells her, roughly, wondering how someone can manage to look beautiful and miserable at the same time. If anyone can manage it, it's Brenda. Since she can be sweet and a bitch at the same time, too. "You scream and I can't sleep. I'm being selfish," he assures, settling down on the edge of the bed.

She stares at him long and hard when he says that, looking tiny in the huge bed and mountain of sheets. "No...no you're not. I'm the selfish one. I...I came back and messed it all up. For you, for Sonny, for Jax."

"Fuck Jax!" he hears himself mutter. And instead of being insulted and jumping to her Candyboy's defense, she giggles, wetly, scrubbing at a stray tear trailing down her cheek.

"Th-they all think it's about them." She huddles her knees up under the blanket, wrapping her too-skinny arms around them. "This...this 'thing'..." she waves her hand expressively before returning it to her knee and he knows she means their marriage, "Sonny thinks I'm in it for Jax...Jax thinks I'm in it for Sonny. *Please.*" She rolls her eyes and he can't help but smile just a little. "I'm in it for me...to save *me*. I'm fighting for my life." Her hair spills sideways as she tilts her head and looks at him with something...something that almost seems nice and caring. Almost wifely. "And yours."

"Mine?" he prompts, glad she's not hysterical anymore...but feeling the hairs on the back of his neck prickle because she's worse than hysterical... she's being civil. Which can't be good.

"You know I've known you longer than I've known either of them?" It's a rhetorical question, but he nods anyway before she continues. "You were *my* best friend before you were Carly's. We were..." and she laughs, now, like little bells...he's struck by how different her laugh is from Courtney's. Heavier chimes. Sadder. "We were kids, Jason. Just kids. I can't let you down."

He's not being nice to her. He's doing what she asked. "You won't let me down," he murmurs, coolly. "I'll make sure of it."

The twist of her smile shows him she appreciates him being an asshole. That it's easier to take than kindness. No...no, she's not like Courtney at all. "Go back to bed, Jason," she says, all sharp and edges. "Go back to sleep before we forget we're not really married."

"I won't forget," he assures, standing up, heading back towards his room.

"You won't..." Her voice follows him out the door. And it's worse than her screams. Worse than her civility. It's like sex and warnings. "But I just might."


So, he should see it coming. Because that's his job...to be on his guard, to be aware at all times, to prevent the shit from hitting the fan. But it doesn't work when she's driving him crazy and he's holding her back from the door and she's yelling "Let me GO!"

"You CAN'T go see Jax right now. You can't. The press is all over the lobby and they'll be waiting," he reminds, fiercely.

"I have to make things right!" she screeches, kicking at his shins as he holds her wrists in one hand and steps back, out of range. "He's mad at me, Jason. Do you know what that means? Have you ever had someone you loved not trust you?"

"Everybody trusts me...quit struggling!" He tries to be gentle as he wrenches her towards the couch, wondering if the fancy doctors were wrong and she really *is* suffering from some mental disorder that's killing her. He knows that's it's definitely killing *him*.

So, he's unprepared when she listens to him. When she stops struggling, stops yelling at him and swearing and beating at him with her little fists, and simply stares up at him like she does when she's in bed and he's rocking her out of dreams. Like she's trying to see straight through him.

"J-jason...?" she whispers, softly, chest heaving under her impossibly tight top. "Please. Let me go."

He swallows, tells himself that a great pair of tits is not going to be the reason he goes to prison "No."

"Fuck you!" she hisses, rearing back her leg for another karate kick.

He catches it between his knees, hoists her up, slides one arm around her nonexistent waist, and does the only thing he can think of that makes sense. That doesn't make sense at all. He kisses her. And before he can blink, her claws are in his hair, she's clutching his skull and kissing him back and they're teetering on unsteady legs and falling. She's got a mouth like...like nothing he's ever tasted. He's heard the term "cock-sucking lips" batted about at Jake's and never really known what it meant until this. Soft and juicy and addictive...so much better when it's not forming words.

If only he'd realized, a month ago, that this was the best way to shut her up...

She makes a moaning noise that's all growls and teasing and wanting and he knows that this is why he never lingers too long in her bedroom... why he's always out the door halfway through one of their blow-out fights. Because this is what yelling is for them...a warm-up, foreplay...and she had to have known that he was going to tear her low-hanging jeans from her hips, pull her on top of him, sink in and have the tips of his fingers meet over the ink at the base of her spine. She rises up, hot and grinding against him as she gasps his name. Not Jax's. Not Sonny's. Just his. "Jase...Jason...Jase...Jason..." with every breath, every time. She's drawing blood with her nails raking his back and he dots the cradle of her hips, the curve of her ass, with thumb-sized bruises. She had to have known...had to have wanted...for them to fuck each other. For them to fuck each other up.

"Still want me to let you go?" he wonders, harshly, against her mouth as he thrusts upwards one last time...deep, all the way...and she clenches and shudders with something that could be pain but is more than likely pleasure.

When she sprawls on top of him, and they're dirty and slick and sticky, a satisfied, sleepy, smile breaks apart her swollen lips. "Mmmm...no...no...not just yet."

And that's when he pushes her away.

"Go back to Jax, Brenda," he says, all sharp and edges. "Go back to Jax before we forget we're not really married."

But it's already too late.


When she wakes up screaming, he rolls over and pulls her against his chest, whispering, "Shhh...shut up...it's okay..." into the kinky curls of her hair.

When he wakes up screaming, she simply traces her nails over the scars on his shoulders and laughs.

She's not being nice to him either.


January 5, 2003.

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