|Winter Has Come
Author: Agent Lateralus01 PM
After the Thanksgiving with the In-laws, Dan is alone for the Holidays. Or so he might think. Chapters will go up in rating as story progresses. Apologies for delay in updating.Rated: Fiction T - English - Angst/Romance - Dan - Chapters: 2 - Words: 3,153 - Reviews: 7 - Favs: 3 - Follows: 8 - Updated: 01-12-12 - Published: 11-22-11 - id: 7571942
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
My apologies for my skills being rusty in a grammatical sense, I really should've proofread this thing better before the initial upload. Regardless, enjoy.
As evening settled upon Los Angeles, Dan grew tired of watching television and wallowing in his own self pity.
Shrugging his coat on, he decided it best that he go out for some fresh air and get some holiday shopping done. It wasn't necessarily his favorite thing, what with the horrid crowds and traffic but it would get him out of the dreariness of his apartment for awhile.
Picking his car keys from off the counter, he looked over at Mr. Mumbles who watched him from the couch. "Don't worry, daddy will be back soon." He smiled earning a soft meow from his feline friend before leaving.
However upon seeing the insanity that was the holiday traffic upon stepping out, he decided it best to avoid it all together and instead trudged through the park to the shopping mall only a short distance from his apartment. Stopping briefly on the bridge that overlooked the river, he looked downward at it. How peculiar that it seemed to gradually be turning colder especially for California. The gentle winter breeze ruffled his hair as he stood in place wondering to himself what he had to look forward to.
"Stupid Chris and Elise leaving me alone for the Holidays. What do I care?" He scowled at his reflection in the water as he leaned closer over the railing.
In an instant, the aging railing had broken and before he had time to react, Dan found himself falling, everything fleeting as panic shook his very soul.
Having stepped out for a few minutes, the imposter hurried to the post office in hopes of getting a few holiday cards sent out. One for his mother, the orphanage and some of his previous targets in identity theft, to be more precise. Despite his best efforts, he was now stuck in traffic which was barely at a crawl.
"I hope this clears up soon." He sighed, turning on the radio and glancing at the clock. It was his fault already that he'd waited until the last minute to mail them.
Looking out at the park, he noticed something.."Is it beginning to snow?" He asked himself aloud, until something else caught his attention. To be more precise, someone falling into the river.
The door flung open to the Chrysler sedan, leaving it there in the dense traffic jam as he hurried off on foot through the park. His heart raced at the idea of someone in trouble as he wasted no time, descending the steep ledge. Half sliding on his back due to the slippery earth he managed to steady himself so as not to fall. Despite this, he cursed under his breath at this knowing he wouldn't be much good if he were to hurt himself in the process. Tearing off his jacket, he rushed into the water despite it's icy coldness and swam against the current to the now seemingly lifeless person a short distance ahead.
He pushed his body, frantic against the surging currents until he was finally upon that of the other person. Grabbing him, he pulled him over one shoulder as his own body struggled under the weight and yet somehow he eventually found himself at the embankment. Trying to will away his own breathlessness, he sank to his knees in front of who he'd just rescued, too frenzied to recognize who it was just yet.
More focused on resuscitation, he began immediately administering mouth to mouth until signs of life were visible.
Once he'd regained consciousness, Dan tried to sit up but instead found himself too weak and choking as water poured from his lungs. The imposter loomed blearily over him though Dan was too out of it to recognize him properly just yet. The same couldn't be said for the other as he stared wordlessly trying to wrap his mind around such an insane coincidence. "You should really lay still for a few minutes until you get your strength." He advised as he kept an eye on his vitals. The surprise and unlikelihood of running into this man of all people was still hard for him to grasp.
"Are you okay? Listen, I should call for a paramedic-"
Dan nodded a yes at the first comment, but answered gruffly at the next.
"There's no need..I'm fine." He fought to steady himself enough to stand, but it was useless. Every time he made the slightest move, the dizziness returned.
"At the very least, let me take you back to where you live." The imposter offered and to this, Dan agreed.
The trip back to the apartment was quiet and Dan still had yet to notice just who it was helping him in favor of resting in the backseat of the car. For what it was worth, it was better this way or so the imposter thought. The last thing Dan needed was to get too excited right after a near fatal accident.
As soon as the engine shut off, the imposter helped Dan to his feet and inside his apartment. He had insisted that he stay with him just in case and as much as Dan was stubborn, in this case he was too exhausted to argue.
Just outside the bedroom imposter waited as Dan changed out of his drenched clothes, not concerned about his own.
Anxiety had welled up in the pit of his stomach as he knew that eventually Dan would know who he was. Despite it all, he remained undeterred.
"Are you decent?" He waited patiently for the response.
"Yes." Was Dan's simple yet drained reply and with that, he entered. Eyes falling upon Dan as he lay in bed, the imposter couldn't help but shake his head at the condition of the bedroom since he'd been gone.
Some things never change.
Taking a seat on the foot of the bed, he watched the weary form of his former rival with some pity.
"Is there anything I can do, anything I can get for you?" He asked quietly, wondering if Dan had any idea who had saved him even as they both talked, both looking at one another. It was nothing short of a miracle that he hadn't already.
Dan shook his head. "No, I'm fine." He nestled against the yellowed bedsheets, intent on resting.
What a day this had turned out to be. None the better than it started and on such an awful note at that.
He couldn't help but to feel dejected at this, however the need for rest was all that mattered now as his mind drifted into an a state of rest.
Having rested the better part of the day, Dan felt himself waking finally to the sound of a vacuum cleaner in the other room. His mind foggy about what had occurred that day, he sat up clenching his fists in annoyance..
The door to the bedroom suddenly burst open with great force as Dan surveyed the living room with a look of rage.
"JUST WHAT THE HELL IS GOING ON HERE!" He demanded, his eyes finally falling upon that of the imposter.
"YOU!" He snarled marching over and grabbing him by the shirt. "What are you doing back here? Didn't you learn your lesson from the last time?"
The imposter frowned as he shut off the vacuum. It was no surprise that Dan had mild amnesia after what had happened to him.
" Just calm down. After that accident you really shouldn't be over exerting yourself-.."
His sentence was immediately cut off by a punch, earning him a black eye.
Dan on the other hand, felt his body weakening and steadied himself against the sofa.
"What did you do to me?" He glared accusingly at the other, almost certain he'd been drugged.
His hand over his black eye, the imposter looked at the other not knowing whether to feel pity or annoyance. "Nothing. Look, you nearly drowned. That's why you're body is so weary. If it weren't for me, you could have died."
Dan stared at him with disbelief as he gathered his thoughts a few images flashing into his mind of falling.
"It is true." Dan felt himself shocked by this, but even more-so that someone who had vowed revenge on him had just saved his life.
"..but I had you arrested. Why would you..?"
It was time for the imposter to be stunned now. He was surprised that this man, whom he had stolen the identity of hadn't tried to kill him by now. He was fortunate in a sense that Dan wasn't to his full strength yet, or this might well had been the case.
Gathering his thoughts, he spoke. "I was tired of breaking the law. Tired of jail, tired of ruining people's lives. The things I did didn't happen without remorse. I got caught up in something I never should have and for that I apologize. Most especially to you, Dan. I'd like to be friends, this time for real."
With this, he reached out his hand offering a handshake of apology.
Dan simply glared for a moment before accepting this gesture. "Alright. Apology accepted. But don't think I'm not still suspicious of you." He narrowed his eyes at his look alike.
The imposter laughed despite himself at this. "I wouldn't expect anything less from you, Dan."
Just then, Dan's cellphone rang from it's resting place on the makeshift coffee table
and he picked it up.
"Hello Chris? Have you came to your senses and decided to come back so you can spend the holidays here?" He asked, ever hopeful.
Chris meanwhile, gave Elise who stood beside him the typical eye roll for whenever Dan was being difficult. "No, sorry Dan. I just wanted you to know both Elise and I are doing good. Try not to be so upset okay? I'll be bringing you back presents!" He tried his best to make that last part sound cheerful, but Dan bought none of it.
"How are the parents? Is Don being nice to you?" He asked, trying to at least be conversational despite his obvious disapproval.
Chris sighed heavily. "Not really. He keeps punching me in the stomach every chance he gets."
Dan's face lit up, having been given the opportunity for the perfect retort. "Is that so? Tell him to give you one from me, you jerk!" With that, he hung up only to notice the imposter staring at him with a certain look.
"What! The guy practically abandons me for his nut job in-laws and wife and I'm left to spend the holidays alone! It's not exactly a pleasant feeling, you know."
The imposter couldn't help but feel sympathetic as he took all of this in. "Listen Dan, I'm not trying to impose or anything, but it's not like I have any major events going on this time of year. You're more than welcome to spend the holidays at my place."
Having heard this coming from someone that had once tried to ruin his life, Dan felt himself nearly overwhelmed by such generosity.
"I couldn't..I mean I hardly know you. I mean literally." He half joked as he took a seat on the couch.
"Well, it would beat being alone and resentful toward Chris the whole time, don't you think? I assure you, you don't have to worry. I'm practically harmless." He gave Dan a knowing look. Of course he was right.
Dan thought about this for a few minutes. It couldn't be that bad, and it seemed like this guy was genuine about what he'd said. "Alright, I'll take you up on that offer." He then became more serious than ever. "However if you try to pull anything, I'll make sure you suffer worse than you ever have in your entire life and this time there won't be any police involved."
The imposter merely smirked for a moment at this.
Typical Dan, indeed.
He couldn't help but admire Dan's way of thinking. He'd likely feel very similarly if he had been through what he'd done to him.
"Well then, it's settled. I think you'll really approve of how I've got my life in order. Once you get to feeling well enough, we'll leave for my place."
The Holidays had just gotten a lot more interesting, so it seemed.