"You broke my fucking heart, and I'm trying real hard to be a man about it, cut me some fucking slack."

The pot sizzled over and his familiar clumsy haste caused the water to spill onto his hand as he moved the pot, and he cursed loudly in response. Oona quickly took his hand and placed it under cold water, and as she looked at his hand, held so tenderly in the fingers just past the palm that extended from the wrist where a scar would soon form, she thought about all the times she'd held that hand; all the times that hand had held her.

Her breath caught in her throat, and he pulled his hand back from the water, drying it roughly despite the fact she knew it still was in pain. She looked up at him. Timers, soul mates, all of that nonsense- if fate were real, wouldn't it have kept her from meeting him to begin with? They had to have met for a reason; Dan wasn't her soul-mate, he was her stepping stone, that last piece pushing her to the bank of certainty.

She bit the inside of her lip, and then swallowed heavily and looked back at him.

There was so much pain marring his features, and even still, he was the most perfect person for her. He may not be a perfect person over all- he could be immature, he had no solid job; but he had worked hard for her approval while it came effortlessly. From the moment she'd met him, he'd been all she'd thought about.

She had come here for a reason, hadn't she?

Her lips were on his before she could stop herself, her hands around his neck as his tentatively hovered over her sides. She breathlessly parted her lips from his and wrapped her arms around him tightly, her head on his shoulder.

"I love you," she finally said, after all this time, and she meant it.

"But?" He prompted, knowing her.

She stepped back so she could look into his eyes for this. "But nothing; no timers, no fate, no "soul-mates" and no doubt. I love you. I don't think I love you, there is no 'was' in love with you; it's here and it's now and the present is nothing without you. I know some kind of science has made perfect matches meet at a certain time, but don't you get it? The perfect thing about Dan is that his existance is what finally pushed me the rest of the way to you! I don't want a stranger; I want you! It's not too late, you don't even believe in timers-"

"I don't want one, but I know they work! I've seen it!"

"I don't care what a piece of plastic says; I care about what my- my heart is saying. I know that's cliche."

"I don't know what that means."

"What it means is, I don't care if it sounds stupid; accepting a piece of technology's idea about my 'one' is, is equally stupid as walking away from the person who I'm in love with. It's- it's not too late, is it?"

For a long moment, he looked at her, seeming too broken to reply. But she could recognize the look in his eyes- he was caving. She didn't want to allow herself to hope, but there was an internal battle of rising hope and dread, until, finally, after an excrutiating eternity-


In her worked up state, the word came as a shock.

"It's not too late," he added, to clarify.

Relief melted her insides, her stomach and ribs sinking in at the exhale of a giant breath she hadn't known was stuck there. She flung herself at him, keeping her lips against his and pushing him steadily toward the wall as her fingers landed on the sides of his neck. He crushed her to him, kissing back fiercely, and when the kiss broke it was with a laugh from both as she leaned her head on his shoulder and he pressed light kisses to her neck.

"I love you," he murmured, "I love you, I love you, I love you, I- fucking- love- you."

"I love you too," she replied, her voice nearly cracking.

He leaned back and looked at her seriously. "Where do you see us in a year?"

"Together," she answered. He raised his eyebrows.

"Can you guarantee that?"

She laughed. "Nothing about time and future is certain; all we have is the present."

"Now who sounds like a commercial? But if you could be certain, would you guarantee it?"

She pressed a short kiss to his lips. "Yes."