Title: "Headlights On The Highway"
Author: monimala
Fandom: "General Hospital"
Rating/Classification: SAC, Jason/Courtney-ish, angst, UST, one bad word.
Disclaimer: These characters don't belong to me, etc.
Summary: Because Chesty McLapDance and AngerBoy have incredibly gorgeous Inappropriate Tension and that leads to fic angst...

"Hold me closer tiny dancer
Count the headlights on the highway
Lay me down in sheets of linen
You had a busy day today "
--Elton John.

He once told Zander that losing his memory left him with a look in his eyes...a look that meant he had no connection to anyone, anything, and was always searching for something to trigger just a flash or two of recognition.

It comes in handy, that Look. People think he has no emotion, they think he's blank inside, and have no idea what he's thinking. Sonny always tells him that it's no use playing poker with him with the face he's got...but they both know he's gambled far worse with his expression. Gambled and lost. Gambled and won. All on the edge of a different kind of trigger. The kind he squeezes with his fingers.

He can stand at Sonny's back during a meeting of the five Families and look completely threatening without moving a muscle or blinking an eye. He remembers going to London and watching the guards at Buckingham Palace do the same thing...they do it for Queen and Country. He does it for...for what? For his friend? For his job?

But he does it real well.

And that's all that matters, right?

Yeah. It comes in handy, the Look. He practices it in the mirror while he's shaving in the morning. The anger, the fear, the wantforElizabeth, all fade from the blue of his eyes like blood draining from a corpse, like lights turning off. And he practiced it at the Oasis every night when Courtney was stripping...

Leaning against the bar, an untouched gin and tonic at his elbow, as he tightened his jaw and watched all those men...all those men reaching for her and shouting at her while she grabbed the pole and swung around it. Some song he didn't recognize...he doesn't recognize much music in general...her long creamy legs...the death in her eyes. The blankness. He recognized *that*.

She had the Look, too.

And he has this crazy desire to make sure it never comes back.

To make sure she stays connected to someone, something.

A crazy desire for it to be *him*.

***

There's a lot of things that aren't a necessity to him. He doesn't need fancy clothes. He doesn't need a fast car. He doesn't need the millions of dollars in his offshore bank accounts. He doesn't see the need for talking big and showing off and making yourself look stupid. He doesn't drink. He doesn't smoke. And what Carly complains about the most...he doesn't need sex.

"It's not natural, Jase! Not healthy! You need to get laid!"

Sure, he likes it. It makes him feel good. But he's never let his hormones lead him around, run his life. He doesn't get the fascination with sex. With going to strip clubs or picking up hookers or sleeping around to scratch an itch. He really doesn't. And maybe that's because he has brain damage and can't remember normal things that other people take for granted. But maybe it's because he's seen too many people make too many mistakes because they let their weaknesses make their judgments for them.

And his job makes weakness absolutely impossible.

So, yeah, he hasn't had sex in almost four years. Since Robin. Supporting himself against the slick wall of the shower and closing his eyes against the throbbing at his groin doesn't count. Whispering names under his breath when he's lying naked beneath the sheets doesn't count.

And he's okay with that.

Most of the time.

***

He drifts off to sleep for just a few minutes...and has some stupid, hot, twisty dream where she's not asleep in her room but is sitting on his lap, her long, pale, hair brushing his face, her tongue in his ear, and she's slowly, grinding against him, giving him that lap dance he paid for an eternity ago.

Then, he jerks upright, gasping for breath at the weight of golden retriever on his chest and realizes that Courtney never, never, could be accused of smelling like dog biscuits and flea spray.

"You're not my type, Rosie," he mutters, gently pushing the overgrown puppy over on the couch even as she whimpers and looks up at him with beseeching dark eyes.

She whines, softly, and he begins to rhythmically stroke the soft fur on the top of her head even as he straightens up and listens to the night sounds outside the small apartment. If he listens hard, he can hear Courtney moving around in the next room...fidgeting in her sleep, low moans escaping, every few minutes, from her throat. Nightmares about the stalker? Or...or something else?

About hope? Admiration? Attraction? He's not too brain dead to realize when somebody wants him. That was one of the first things he picked up on after the accident...who wanted him and for what. He remembers, clearly, the other day, listening to her babble about him being comfy on the couch...her voice breaking as she accidentally said she thought about him while she was lying in bed.

Is that what she's doing now? Thinking about him?

The way he's thinking about her?

Or is she dreaming about his brother, her husband? About AJ? About the reunion sex they're going to have when he gets back from Washington?

"*Fuck*."

Rosie raises her head, questioning the growl that slips out from between his clenched teeth, and he automatically shushes her, stroking her sleek coat until she's resting again, heavy head against his thigh.

The Look. Sometimes, he has to practice it in an empty room.

Sometimes he has to practice it for himself.

--end--

October 18, 2002.



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