I. -

The prewar buildings surround them, a silent juxtaposition of old world stone and cheap neon signs, the streets damp and mostly deserted at this hour. The pedestrian bridge stretches out in front of them, still damp from the earlier rain, and she feels Red's hand at her back as they begin to cross over.

He says nothing as he guides her to the smooth railing and she looks down below – expecting to see a river, another street, but instead an urban amphitheater spreads out from the density of downtown to the rising tree line of the park.

"The orchestra," Red intones softly, by way of explanation and removes his hand from her back, placing it on the rail, "I have heard they are phenomenal."

"You've heard them play?" she answers, more filler than question and allows the relaxed nature of the evening, the anonymity of a city she's never visited and the good wine from dinner wash over her and maintain the steady, unhurried beat of her heart.

The break from the run and run, and hunt and chase a welcome distraction.

"No, never," Red responds, but he sounds wishful, and she wonders if perhaps there is more to the story but she doesn't ask, doesn't do anything to interrupt the heady peace she's feeling.

"Oh," she replies, just as the first strong notes resonate from below and Red turns to her and she knows he's going to ask if she wants to go –

But it's the evening, and the wine, and the dark promise that all days will not be like this one that keep her there and she shakes her head slightly, a small smile warming her lips. "Let's stay."

Red exhales, and she sees the peace of the evening overtake him as well and she to leans against the rail to listen.

"It's beautiful," she says, just above a whisper, because she doesn't really know what to say.

And it is beautiful.

"That it is," Red responds, and she looks over so see him leaning on the rail, strong hands clasped in front of him, intently watching the music below, and open – his expression is so open and unguarded that –

She takes a half a step to her right and leans into him, hears his breath hitch and the exhale of air, so close to her that it moves against her cheek and she can almost feel the surprise. Red's startled, and, well, that almost never happens.

She smiles, and it's the kind of wishful, peaceful smile that a person feels when all is right with the world, and maybe they've had just enough to drink to not question things too much. And he can't see her smile but she swears he feels it and she feels his musculature relax the slightest bit.

She runs her off hand up and down the cement rail, feeling the way the rain has washed away the wear and tear of the week and she listens, as the musicians below begin another song.

She thinks that he might pull away, or say something, or start off on some verbose story – the likes of which she can only begin to imagine, but he doesn't, he just stays still and she's nestled so close that she can feel –

– she can feel his heart beating against her own.


The next day dawns bright and no trace of the earlier rain remains. She pulls the curtains open just as he steps into the room.

Last night they didn't acknowledge what had happened at all. Not when her attempts to stifle her yawns became less than successful. Not when he finally looked down at her and smiled, a beautiful smile that belonged right there – on him, in that moment with the music below and the buildings rising up above them.

They didn't acknowledge the way she sidled into him, his arm tightly around her, holding her steady as the walked slowing down the street. As they entered the safe house doors.

Not as he stopped outside of her door, pulling her closer before releasing her and walking the short distance to his own bedroom.

She wonders now, in the morning light, with the smell of coffee behind her and her feet cozy in the thick knit socks she procured three cities ago, if it even happened. If maybe she read more into something that was just mundane –

– or if she is finally seeing something, feeling something, that has been there all along.