I was standing two steps behind her as she guided her key to its slot on her front door. After turning the lock and opening the door, she took one step forward before turning her head to face me. I smiled back at her. At least I thought I smiled back. I wasn't quite sure of what was happening; my head was in a bit of a haze.

"Vaughn? You okay?" She was always perceptive of my actions and feelings.

"Yeah." I definitely smiled this time. I made sure of it.

There was a pause, and I was staring at her. Or past her. I was trying to gather my thoughts.

"You coming in?" Her smile broadened. I realized that my heart was beating harder than it should.

"Yeah." I breathed in to try to help my heart calm down, and then followed her in.

I closed the door behind me, and stepped in. I looked around. It's been a while… I saw Sydney walk towards a couple suits. CIA agents, Sydney's told me, who were keeping an eye on the apartment and the baby. Isabelle. She's here somewhere. I felt my heart beat faster. I've only seen that picture of her that Dixon gave me. My thoughts were interrupted by one of the agents approaching me with his hand extended.

"Welcome back, Agent Vaughn."

I shook his hand, and saw the other agent already at the door, holding a suitcase in one hand, and the doorknob in the other. "Oh, thanks." I returned the nod the other agent gave me. "And thanks for… keeping this place safe."

"Just doing our jobs. Agent Vaughn, Agent Bristow, stay safe." He gave us a nod before leaving the apartment.

Sydney waved them goodbye before closing and locking the door. She turned towards me. I was still staring, and I was still uncharacteristically quiet. I could tell that she knew I wasn't fine. I felt fine. It's just my head didn't feel quite right.

"So… has it changed?"

"Has what changed?"

"I don't know. You're looking around the apartment as if you've never been here."

I let out a small chuckle. I really was acting like a stranger who had never been let inside Sydney's apartment. I glanced around my surrounding once more before facing here again.

"So? Has it changed that much?"

"No, I don't think so. Furniture is still the same. Is that a new coffee machine?" She nodded. "But it also feels different… you know…" She smiled at me. "Or maybe it's the same to you. I mean, it is your place."

"It's our place."

This is our place. Her hand felt a little cold when she reached up to caress my face, just over my jaw. But her smile and the love I could see in her eyes were warm. Our silent connection was broken off by a tiny cry from the bedroom. My attention snapped to the source of the cry.

"I guess she's up to welcome daddy home." Sydney walked past me towards the bedroom. Her hand was in mine, tugging it as an instruction for me to follow her. I complied.

She went inside the dimly lit bedroom and went straight to the crib. I hung back at the entrance. I watched her bend down to pick the baby up to soothe her. I watched Sydney, with Isabelle in her arms, lightly sway from side to side while one hand is stroking Isabelle's back. Soon enough, the crying stopped. I had been watching with awe. The silence in the room brought my mind back to reality. I stepped forward and approached them. Sydney was still swaying, and giving little Isabelle tiny kisses on the top of her head.

"Isabelle, look who's here." Sydney rearranged her hold on Isabelle so she could see me. I was probably grinning like an idiot at this point. She's here. Right in front of me. The most beautiful creature on Earth. "Hi," Sydney said in a little voice while her hand picked up Isabelle's, to motion a wave.

I chuckled. "Hi––" I couldn't think of anything to say.

Sydney addressed Isabelle, "You know, there was a point in his life when he was a bit smoother than this with the ladies."

I chuckled some more, and then I held her tiny hand. Her fingers wrapped around my index finger and I was probably crying now. "Isabelle. Hi. I'm Michael."

"He also goes by 'Daddy'" Sydney added, smiling at me. "Do you want to hold her?" She was addressing me this time.

She didn't wait for an answer before she handed the baby to me. For a moment, I panicked because I didn't know how to actually hold her; I was afraid of making her uncomfortable and cry again. But once she's in my hands, instincts seemed to kick in and I just held her close to my chest. Sydney's hand was caressing Isabelle's head, her lips gave me a peck on the cheek.

If I wasn't in tears before, I definitely was now. This is the perfect moment. I was home with Sydney and Isabelle. At last.

"Sorry I couldn't be here earlier," I said, barely above a whisper, to Isabelle. "I just had to be away for a while." I felt Sydney's hand stroking my back. "Don't worry, I'm never leaving again." Sydney laid her head on my shoulder, and I planted a kiss at the top of her head.