Just thought I'd try my hand at Emma Approved. I'm missing this cute little show in this hiatus.
Never had it crossed Emma's mind that she and Alex would end up where they are today. She isn't even sure what was the catalyst that carried them through from where they were, always the same, ever reliable to now: uncertain where they stood, not really talking, and separating.
Her hand hovers over the mouse of her computer. Separating. Her and Alex. No longer Woodhouse and Knightley, snarking and bantering their way into making a better world. Now it'll just be her. She finds herself blinking, holding back tears she hadn't realized she still had left.
Looking back over the past few months, she can't even pinpoint where this divide started. They'd weathered Senator Scumbag, the Izzie/John incident, Senator You-Know-Who Part 2, all with a sense of camaraderie, a sense of moving forward.
She wants to blame Jane Fairfax, but it's an old excuse that's worn quite thin. Yes, even Emma is capable of realizing when she's crossed the line. But unfortunately that realization came too late.
The look of disappointment on Alex's face as she'd tried to explain her side of things (Frank Churchill had blinded her with his charm; Jane should've known what she was getting into; she hadn't known) was something she wasn't going to ever be able to erase from her memory. That and his words, spoken in a low tone, hard to discern if she hadn't been staring straight at him with tearful eyes, waiting for some sort of absolution that he'd always been able to provide before: "Badly done, Emma."
Her eyes close against the pain. She opens them again almost immediately. She is done wallowing in self pity and regret. Yes, he's leaving because he can't work with her anymore, can't support her actions, but she has hope of not having destroyed their lifelong friendship. She is Emma Woodhouse, and she can do something about it.
With a renewed energy, she puts aside her sadness aside and begins to sort through her videos. Maybe it's a little early in the documentary process to start editing, but where there is stress, there is organizing and Emma needs something to remain familiar.
But, as she clicks through video after video, her eyes watching the interactions between her and Alex, she forgets about editing and just becomes a spectator. Sure she'd lived what she'd seen, but there's a self-awareness, a readiness to look beyond her own conceptions that enables her to see something that is blindingly obvious now.
She loves Alex. It's in her eyes, in the way that her gaze lingers on him after he's given her a vote of confidence or pinky sworn with a kiss. It's in the way she listens to what he has to say. It's in the way that it hurts when his face falls at some callous thing she's said.
But what really has her fascinated, what's gotten her attention, is that it looks like Alex loves her, too. She may not ever have felt the feeling before (or she has and has just refused to label it), but she's an expert at reading it in other's faces. (Yes, yes, she's missed it on his all this time, but still.)
His gaze is earnest and warm. He may snark at her, but it's to better her and help her better the world. She sees that now. His face whenever Frank Churchill was around would've given the game away sooner had she seen it. And most important of all: He smiles when he says her name.
As the last video ends, Emma sits in the silence of her office. The heartache is still there, but there's also now hope. Because she's seen what they've been to each other, but have missed at the same time. If Emma Woodhouse had missed the way Alex Knightley had looked at her or the way she looked at him, then Alex had sure as well missed it to. She feels a smile grow on her face for the first time in weeks. Shutting off the computer, she heads to the door.