AN: So this is my second Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. fic. My previous story, Come Hell or High Water got a lot of positive feedback, so I decided to write another! I'm hoping to update at least once a week, but I just started two jobs so bear with me! Reviews help get me in the writing zone, of course. Anyways, enjoy Chapter One, Talk.
*I don't own Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., unfortunately*
Grant Ward looked up at the sound of the cell door opening, but quickly returned his gaze to the grey steel table when he saw that his visitor was the eldest female member of the team.
"I'll talk" he sighed as she approached.
"Really? That easy?" Melinda replied. "I'll admit, I'm disappointed. I thought you'd be more fun than this." She sat down in the chair across from him.
"You already had your fun, back at Cybertek" he answered with a glare. Melinda nodded and smirked. She was about to respond, but Ward cut her off before she had the chance. "So, like I said, I'll talk. But not to you. I'm only going to talk to Skye."
"I don't think you're in any position to be making demands, Ward. Besides, you'll talk to me regardless."
"Maybe so, but you know the training I went through. You'll get information from me, sure. But it won't be the right information. That, you're only gonna get if I give it willingly."
Melinda pursed her lips and afforded Ward one last glare before stalking out of the room.
Coulson had been watching the encounter in the adjoining room and met May out in the hallway. Wordlessly, he nodded his head towards the bathroom door before setting off to grab a cup of coffee from the kitchen. Melinda sighed and went over to knock on the door.
"It's me" she called.
"Come in" Skye replied over the sound of running water. It had become standard practice on the bus to let members of the same sex in the bathroom while one was showering, since there was a curtain and everything. May stepped into the steam filled room and stood next to the cloth barrier.
"Ward said he'll talk."
"Good. It's the least he can do, although I'm surprised he gave up so easy…"
"He didn't" May sighed, "He says he'll only talk to you."
Skye was silent for a moment. May heard her set down the shampoo bottle and Skye placed a hand on the wall for support.
"Did you tell him no?"
"I tried. But he argued, rightly, that we have no way of verifying that he tells the truth, let alone the whole truth, if we force him."
"I'm not a S.H.I.E.L.D. interrogator, May."
"No one is anymore, Skye! But Coulson's the boss now and if he says that you're an interrogator, then that's what you are. So finish your shower, put on your big girl panties, and do your job." With that, May left the room, leaving no audience for Skye's groan of frustration a moment later.
Skye quickly finished her shower, dried off, and then took May's advice- literally. She dressed in a brand new bra and pantie set; Ward wouldn't be seeing the underwear, of course, but the bra was a triple push up and Skye planned to use all assets at her disposal. Besides, as any girl would attest, new undies always inspire confidence, and Skye needed all the confidence she could get. On top of the purple lace ensemble, she wore a pair of spandex shorts and a low cut green tank top. Both were chosen strategically- before he'd stabbed her in the back, Skye had noticed an appreciative look in Ward's eye whenever she'd worn either piece. Finally, she pulled her still-damp hair into a ponytail, applied a bit of makeup, squared her shoulders and marched into the cell where Ward was waiting. It wasn't until she was comfortably seated opposite him that she graced him with her gaze.
He was staring at her. The evil she had expected to see was absent; all she could see sitting in front of her was Grant, her S.O. Her friend. She drew in a breath, hardened her heart, and began.
"You said you would talk. Better get started, before we see just how well you taught me to throw a punch."
"I love you" the specialist blurted.
"We're on S.H.I.E.L.D. time here, Gr- Ward" she told him forcefully, despite the hundreds of butterflies that had chosen that moment to congregate in her stomach. "We want HYDRA intel, not personal declarations."
"And I'll give you HYDRA intel. All of it. As soon as you give me five minutes."
Skye clenched her jaw, leaned back in her chair, and crossed her arms. "You've got two."
"I love you, Skye" Ward began as he leaned forward. "When I first met you, you were an annoying kid who was in my way, but even then I felt a spark. And then you joined S.H.I.E.L.D. and you became my way. You became the light in my darkness. By the time that encrypted message came through, I was already having some doubts about HYDRA, but I didn't have time to make up my mind before Garrett called me and I had to decide then and there. I made the wrong choice, and I've been regretting it ever since. I know you must hate me right now, but it's nowhere near as much as I hate myself for hurting you; for hurting this team.
"I can't change what I did, Skye. I can't undo all the pain I've caused. But there is one thing that I know I have to change- if I don't I won't be able to go on with life. If there's one thing I'm going to change, it's the way you're looking at me right now." Skye dropped her gaze. Her lap was very interesting all of a sudden. "Skye" he whispered, leaning forward to take her hand. The touch made her jump and she pulled her arm away.
"It's been more than two minutes, Ward. You've said your piece. I assume May can take it from here?"
Ward nodded and Skye had to keep herself from running out of the room. As soon as the door had closed behind her she bolted, shrugging past Coulson and locking herself in her bunk.
The tears flowed unwittingly, and soon she couldn't stop. She fell asleep on top of her blankets, the pillowcase covered in tears.
When she woke up, around 2am, her head was pounding and her throat was raw. She walked through the silent plane to grab a glass of water from the kitchen, but then found herself going into the viewing room next to Ward's cell instead of going back to her bunk.
She pulled the footage of the interrogation up on the monitor… The video started at the point of her entrance and Ward's 'speech'. Skye fast-forwarded through that, and started watching at the point when he'd begun spilling HYDRA secrets.
It almost seemed as though she was watching a standard debriefing from one agent to another. May hadn't even had to ask him any questions; he'd just gone ahead and walked her through the whole operation.
After watching about twenty minutes of the footage, Skye skipped to the end of the tape. May was already at the door, about to leave, when Ward called out.
"Melinda?" The woman turned just enough to see him. "If you and I were ever friends, do one thing for me now. Tell Skye I'm sorry." May looked him over once more, walked over and slapped him hard across the face, and then left. The screen went black as the video ended, but not before Skye saw the last look on Ward's face- a look of lost hope.
Skye shut down the computer and stood up, about to go back to bed, but stopped with her hand on the door handle. She turned around and, before she had a chance to change her mind, pulled back the curtain that was covering the two- way mirror that was set into the wall.
She's expected to see Ward asleep on the cot in the corner, but he wasn't. Despite the late hour, he was awake, pacing around the cell. After a moment, he looked right at her. Skye gasped. There was no way he could know that she was there, and yet he did. His grey eyes were piercing, as waves of desperation radiated from them to wash over her.
Skye threw every S.H.I.E.L.D. protocol out the window just then. She made sure that the security cameras were off, then went over and placed her hand on the door that led into Grant's cell. With a great inhale for courage, she pushed the door open and walked in.
Grant looked at her in disbelief. "Skye…" he breathed. He walked over to her, almost in a trance. Just a moment before he pulled her into his arms he stopped, realizing that he might frighten her off if he did.
Skye closed her eyes. "Did you mean it?" she asked quietly. "Did you really and truly mean it?"
"Every single word" he replied in a low voice.
Skye let out a breath she hadn't even realized she'd been holding as she closed the distance between them and buried her face against his chest. Grant wrapped his arms around her and kissed the top of her head as she clung to him, shaking.
When she had calmed down somewhat, he led her over to the cot and they sat on the edge. Skye was all but sitting in Ward's lap, but neither of them had any objections to that.
"Why?" Skye whispered, so quietly that, had Ward not been a Specialist (and thus trained to be highly alert at all times), he probably wouldn't have heard it.
"John Garret was my S.O., but he was more than that too. He gave me a new life, he was practically my father. I owed him. So when he-"
"No" Skye cut him off. "That's not what I mean." Ward looked at her in confusion. "I meant, why… why do you love me? Why would you even notice me? I mean, I've seen the way other girls flock to you. You could date supermodels! So why me? What's so special about me? I lived in a fucking van before you guys found me for christ's sake! So, why?"
Grant brought a hand up to her face, turning her gaze towards him. Only when her eyes met his did he reply. "How?" was his answer, making Skye hit him lightly on the chest. "How can you not see how amazing you are? How can you think so little of yourself, when you mean so much to me. How can someone with such a bright view of the world not see herself in the same light? And how," he asked, placing a light kiss on her lips before continuing, "How could I love anyone else?"
Tears of joy welled up in Skye's eyes as she brought her lips to his. The kiss began gentle, but soon became the most passionate either of them had ever had.