*Ohshitohshitohshit*. For that split second of an instant, you think you've fucked it up. That you were wrongwrongwrong and now he's gone. Gone forever. Dead. The blood drains from your face as you lose the echo of his limp fingers brushing yours and you turn away from the silent monitors and his even more silent eyes.
You should've known better.
You're no Fox Mulder.
Your theories are nothing but smoke and bullshit. Parallel dimensions? Doubles? Ha. You've killed him. You've killed a good man. The best man you've ever known.
But then you turn and turn and turn and there he is. Framed in the light of your apartment windows. Slightly bemused at your lack of attention. White t-shirt and blue eyes and ohgodohgod you can't breathe until you're touching him and holding him and sure.
Your Doggett. Alive. Back from limbo.
He smells like clean rain and plain soap and good old boy. He's startled by the intensity of your arms around him but his firm hands slowly find their way to your hips and he clasps you close. You can almost hear the panic in his head 'toomuchlittlegirlmuchtooclose' and it makes you laugh, softly.
"John..." you whisper, inhaling the taste of his pulse and the beat of his skin against your mouth. "John, you're here..."
"Where else would I be, Agent Reyes?" he chuckles, unevenly, shivering against you. "Where else have I been?"
Cold...lost...scared...caught in a place where you lie fallen with your throat slit and he can't bring you back? You don't know. But you put your palm against his rough cheek and you hold him. As if this simple connection of flesh against flesh can ground him in this plane, in this time...in this moment. "Doesn't matter," you tell him, pulling back and looking into his face. "I'm just glad you're here."
He blushes, slightly...looks like he might just stamp his foot and stutter "Aw, shucks, Ma'am"...but instead he just loops his arms around your waist and speaks to you with those startling eyes...just like he did from that hospital bed when he thought you were gone, when he begged you to let him go. Concern, respect, affection, confusion. He doesn't know what to make of you. He never did.
But he'll never stop trying.
He brushes your forehead with his cool lips. "I'm glad I'm here, too."
|Story Index||E-mail Mala||Links|