By: Gaeriel

Disclaimer: Lost belongs to people who are much more talented and creative than I.

Summary: "His arms were driftwood on the beach..." Kate/Sayid. Short, but I think this ship needs to be jumpstarted.

The first thing Kate noticed about him was his arms. Well, maybe not the first thing. First, she noticed that he was a man and Arab and not Arab-American and his hair was messy just like everyone else's. But the first thing that Kate cared that she noticed about him was his arms. His arms were driftwood on the beach; all brown, knotted muscle and hard edges. The first time she thought the metaphor, it almost made her hate him. They were trapped on a desert island and he was like driftwood.

"Kate..." Sayid whispers between her parted lips. It is dark, or maybe she only thinks so because he is so close to her. She hasn't been this close to anyone since her Air Marshall, or maybe Sawyer the last time he (ass) got in her face. Kate tries to push those two people out of her mind. She tries to think only of Sayid and how the experience of his lips on hers is too good to waste by thinking about bad people and all the bad things she's done.

"I don't deserve you," Kate says. Or rather, she doesn't. It's likely she's afraid that he'll agree with her. It's even more likely she's afraid he won't. Kate has found that it is more difficult to hate yourself when somebody is there to love you.

The immediate hours after the crash were the worst. Kate spent most of them wandering through the jungle, herself feeling like driftwood. Only she was the kind still drifting. The sun had bleached her. She could remember once being fearless, but for the life of her she could do nothing but shake. Then she found Jack and he brought her back to the others. That's when she saw Sayid, unnerved, yes, but still of form with purpose in his motions. And his arms, so strong, were driftwood. Kate always saw everything that wasn't obvious; he had managed to get himself beached and she was getting sick from the waves.

That was when she almost hated him, but then he fixed the radio and Kate realized that she was being stupid. People weren't like wood. Wood couldn't bleed. Wood didn't look at her with moon-wide brown eyes, nor did it speak to her as if its every breath was something for her alone. But Sayid could. And he did so by leaning in so close that she still can't believe her heart didn't jump out of her mouth and into his.

"Though it might as well have," Kate murmurs.

"Hmm...?" He says. They are finished now and are lying just within the forest where the floor is still sand (it gets EVERYWHERE) but the trees are still tall and green. His arm is casually thrown across her waist. His face is pressed less casually against her neck. He has told her that, after he sets up those transceivers, his next project will be creating a map of her body based on the aesthetics of her scent. Her neck, apparently, is to be one of the larger nations.

"Tell me something true," she says, "or at least something about you before."

He thinks hard for a minute. Kate closes her eyes because it really is dark and she can see his "thinking cap" expression so much better in her own mind.

Finally, he says, "I think I am genuinely, truly, afraid of crocodiles."

Kate frowns, "They have crocodiles in Iraq?"

"No," with his thumb and forefinger against her chin, he moves her head to face his. Sayid's eyes are dark and adoring. "But I think, if I met one, I wouldn't like it."

She laughs. His sense of humor isn't always... well... humorous, but it's all for her and she likes it.

"Now, your turn. Tell me something true about yourself."

She responds instantly, "You are the only person I've never lied to."

He kisses her in a way that suits her. Very little tongue, with an emphasis on lip-nibbling.

"But then again, we haven't known each other very long."

This time, he laughs. They fit each other very well.

He had a way of looking at her that was very tender. He could be quick to anger, but was often just as deft with kindness. She had never met anyone quite like him. She made a habit of seeking him out when Jack was busy or moping and Claire asleep. He liked to talk to her and she liked to listen. She told him that she thought his arms looked like driftwood, especially when she and he sat next to each other because she was almost the color of sand now. He told her that he thought her eyes looked like his dead wife's.

She hadn't known what to say; because no one ever does in situations like that, so she just sat next to him while he didn't cry. Not long after that, he kissed her for the first time. But it was awhile after that before they were lying against each other just within the forest where the floor is still sand (it gets EVERYWHERE) but the trees are still tall and green. They took their time, lots of time, with lots of tender glances and soft words to sustain them from one moment to the next.

The hair on the back of her neck stands on end even before the eerie, mechanical whirring sound begins. It's strange, but now awareness of it has become like a sixth sense. She can feel the chomping of trees in her skeletal frame before she can hear it in the air. For a second she stiffens and regrets (for the first and only time) being in the jungle with Sayid and not someone she wouldn't die for. However, Kate soon realizes that the noise is far off.

"What do you think it is?" She asks, not really caring for an answer. Everyone can speculate until the stars drop out of the sky, but in the end that's all there is: speculation.

"I think it's death," he says. "Sometimes I wonder if all this isn't one last dream before we die. I've had nightmares where I am still on the plane. I am afraid every night I go to sleep that I will wake and be on fire and dead."

The noise continued and then stopped.

"I think that is the sound of the plane crashing. I think we are all on borrowed time."

She shivers and wraps his arms tighter around her. She is not cold, but she heard somewhere that when somebody shivers like that it means that someone has walked over their grave. She can smell Sayid and she decides that he even smells like driftwood. As she falls asleep, she thinks that if she's going to wake up dead tomorrow, then this is the best dream she's ever had.