Title: Lead Me, But Don't Let Me Follow
Fandom: Alias. Sarkney. "I never asked you to try, but you keep telling yourself I did"
Word Count: 964 (I couldn't condense it anymore)
When he woke, it was raining, and she was gone.
The coat that had been slung over the chaise wasn’t there anymore, as was the bag she’d dropped under it. His clothes were still haphazardly strewn over the rest of the room, but hers were gone.
He pulled on his clothes and made tea; the cold had seeped into the room and settled around him. He leaned against the window and stared into the mist. The weather had turned the city and the world around him gray. He let the tea burn his hands.
They had been hiding in shadows and meeting in secret for months, a culmination of the years of fierce tension between them. At first it was a battle of wills, a mission to make the other admit that the forbidden fruit was too tempting to give up. And then somehow, it had become not a break in the routine, but part of it, until finally it was weaved so intricately into their lives that it was no longer possible to be rid of it, lest the whole tapestry fall apart.
Last night brought the realization of that. Their first embrace had been hot and frantic, clothes flying as they undressed as fast as they could. But once they were naked and she lay underneath him, he couldn’t help but want to savour her in every way. There was no hurry; they had hours, days even, this time, but he kept his hands and mouth slow and easy.
She had begged, threatened, even sobbed before he ended the torture and entered her. When they were finally, fully, joined, there was a shock in the air and when his blue met her brown, he suddenly felt raw and exposed, leaving him almost shaking. The rest of the night was spent in the same sensuous manner, holding on to the other for strength.
He drank his tea, his other hand reaching behind and pulling the gun tucked in the back of his pants. When he turned into the room, the door was open and she stood there, silhouetted in all black. Her gun was raised and pointed straight at him. “Put the gun down, Sark.”
He just casually flicked the safety off. “Sydney, Sydney, I can’t believe that after all this, you’re selling me out.”
“Don’t bullshit me,” she said, stepping further into the room. “Like you weren’t planning on turning me over at some point.”
“I could assure you I wasn’t, but I doubt you’ll believe me.”
“I want to,” she said, much quieter now. “And that’s why it has to stop. Now.” Her gun trembled slightly, but her composure never cracked and he could have sworn he imagined the tremor.
“Do you really think,” he turned from the window and brought his gun up casually, the barrel directed at her. Sydney’s stance stiffened. “Do you really believe that the feelings will just go away if I do? Lock me up and it all disappears?” He shook his head, smiling at her. “Poor poor Sydney.”
“Yeah, well,” she raised her chin. “It’s better than waiting and working for something that will never happen. Why not just congratulate me on working up the courage, finally?”
He could almost feel the chill from outside on his skin. “Why can’t you believe that I’ve fallen in love with you?”
“Because you can’t,” she said bluntly. “You’ve said it time and time again, in everything you do and don’t do. And you can’t put any of this on me. I never asked you to try, but you keep telling yourself I did. My feelings are my own and I’ve never tried to force them on you in any way.”
They stared at each other for a long time. “Tell me, Sydney,” he said quietly. “I need to hear you say it.” When she looked shocked, he smiled wryly. “Humour me.”
“I love you,” she said, steady and sure. “I’m in love with you.”
There was a thick snap when he pulled the trigger. Sydney slumped forward when the bullet hit her stomach, coughing and falling back against the wall. She just looked at him as she slid down, a trickle of blood staining her lips and running down the corner of her mouth.
He tucked his gun into his back again and moved to stand over her. She was breathing hard, hand clutching her middle, heavy eyes looking up at him. “You shot me,” she panted, then coughed again.
“Yes,” he bent down and unbuttoned her jacket. He gently traced the exposed skin of her neck and collarbone.
She laughed low. “You love me,” as his hands came to rest on her stomach.
“Of course I do,” he ran his thumbs over the flat oval of silver that was spattered on the heavy vest. “I can see you had no doubt, but if you’d had more faith, it wouldn’t have had to come to this.”
“Yes it did,” she smiled, grabbing one of his hands in hers. He brushed a finger over the blood on her chin and showed it to her. “I must have bit my lip,” she said, her tongue running along to feel for marks.
He leaned over and covered her red lips with his. They kissed until she couldn’t breathe and when he pulled back he lifted her to her feet, shrugged the bulky covering off of her and held her to him. “So what now?” she asked.
“Whatever you want,” he said, tilting her head up to look her in the eyes. “You can choose; anything you want.”
She suddenly smiled. “If I jumped off a cliff, would you follow?”
“Darling Sydney,” he replied, pulling her close. “Of course not. When you go over, I’ll be the one leading.”