Disclaimer: JAG is property of Donald P. Bellisario, Paramount Pictures, CBS Television and Belisarius Productions. Don't sue me. I have no money and am very, very, broke.
Author's Note: I haven't written fan fiction in a very long time, so please bear with me. I believe this is my second fan fiction story. (Unless I wrote some that I currently do not remember) This story was concocted by the many plot bunnies running around in my head. I've had this idea for a while, but didn't put it into action until now. My thanks go out to Katie, Erin, and Clare for beta-ing and the motivation! Finally, enjoy! Reviews are greatly appreciated. Oh, and lunch with Catherine and David would be nice.
Summary: How many hits can a relationship take – before eternally being destroyed? How about just one? Harm and Mac have taken their relationship to the next level, but chaos comes all too soon.
Chapter One: Saying Goodbye
0600 Local Time
Georgetown, Washington DC
"Wake up, beautiful."
Luscious lips met the forehead of a United States Marine Lieutenant Colonel. With a groan, she flipped to rest on her side – her face away from her obvious admirer. Pulling the covers closer to her body, she attempted to fall back into the depths of sleep – hoping to avoid what she knew was going to happen soon. She just wasn't ready.
Harmon Rabb Jr. watched as his sweetheart of four months stubbornly stalled the inevitable. As much as he didn't want to do it, he knew that he had to. Reaching out to grab the edge of the blanket, he quickly pulled it off of her, revealing her to the cold morning air. She shivered, and immediately curled into a ball. Her whine that came shortly thereafter only made the situation more comical.
"Harm, that was cruel. You know what they say about payback."
He chuckled slightly, and sat on the edge of her bed. Reaching out a hand to stroke her face, he sighed in resignation. He knew he couldn't make her go out to breakfast with him, but he also knew that the only reason she was acting this way was because of the fact that they would have to say goodbye again. If only he didn't get that stupid assignment…
From what the General told him, the former head JAG on the USS George Washington was being court-martialed. No reason as to why – just an order for him to temporarily replace the moron who got himself fired. As his hand trailed down to take a hold of hers, he leaned in to whisper again.
"Mac…come have breakfast with me. I've never known a time when you haven't said yes to any kind of food. I promise I'll make it worth your while."
She popped open one eyelid to curiously stare at him, giving him a look over. He was in his summer whites again – she was always a sucker for those – and his gold wings gleamed in the sunlight shining through the windows. He smelled of a mix of aftershave and cologne. His hair was neatly done. When was it not? Mac reluctantly sat up only to receive Harm's flyboy grin. That smile did it every time – her heart skipped a beat, and she attempted to smile in return. He leaned over to kiss her forehead once more, and stood.
"That's my girl. I'll let you get changed. I'll be waiting outside."
As she watched him walk out of her bedroom, she slowly made her way to the closet, pulling out her own uniform, and laid it on the bed. The Marine green color contrasted with the soft hues of her covers. Pulling out her government issued shoes from the closet; she laid them on the floor. She could hear Harm humming to himself in the other room, and sighed once more. Within the four months that they'd been together – only two were fully spent with each other. Oh well, military life, right? If having one person in the military was difficult, having two was so much harder to work out. Either she was on TAD, or he was on TAD. Other times, their cases kept them so busy that they just couldn't get together.
After brushing her teeth and making herself somewhat presentable, Mac walked out of her bedroom and faced a pensive Harm. He was standing by the window, staring into space – not even noticing that she had emerged from the room. She cleared her throat and he quickly turned around, smiling. He was always smiling.
"You look great." He walked over to her, and she smiled at his compliment.
"Must be the uniform." His grin broadened.
"No, it's the gorgeous woman wearing the uniform." She giggled a bit and stepped a bit closer to him.
Their eyes locked. For a moment, time stood still. There was no future goodbye, no split in ways, and definitely no outside world. At that moment, all that mattered was them. Harm and Mac. Two souls mingling with each other in intimate ways, ways that were unexplainable to the living. No one understood except for those involved, and it didn't matter. Because all they needed were each other.
Harm's face was only inches away from Mac's and he could feel her breath on his lips. His breathing became rapid, and he could feel his heart pounding in his ears. The blood was rushing quickly to his head, but he could only see the chocolate brown eyes in front of him – sucking him deeper into her soul. He was drowning – drowning in the unconditional love of a woman, and he could do no less than feel the same.
As he leaned closer, his lips finally found hers, and a fiery sensation sparked. Her hands found their way to the nape of his neck, pulling him closer than imaginable. His hands reached to cup her face – savoring every moment, absorbing every sensation and touch – this moment was quickly spinning out of control. He reluctantly pulled away and they both attempted to grab a hold of their breathing.
"Wow." An eyebrow rose, and a light laugh was heard.
"Wow is right." Harm's eyes danced with mischief and he took a step back. Offering a hand, he couldn't stop the grin from appearing on his face, and Mac took up the offer. Her hand clasped tightly around his as they finally made their way to her car.
0730 Local Time
Leslie's Place (Restaurant)
Falls Church, Virginia
"I can't believe you're leaving again. Why he picked you instead of Turner, I'll never know… I'm not saying that Turner's a better lawyer, but I wish it were him instead of you… How many times have we had to do this? And now for an indefinite amount of time…" Mac used her fork to poke at the half eaten breakfast left on her plate.
Harm watched and listened quietly at Mac's rambles. Seeing her hurt over him leaving again – this time for a longer period than the others – hurt him more than he could have ever imagined. Sure, they were in love, and he knew this would be difficult, but in the end, it would have to be done. Reaching over, his right hand covered hers and the cling of the fork against the plate, stopped.
"Mac, I know we don't know how long this will take, and I wished that the General wouldn't pick me, but he did. It's a fact we cannot change, and I am willing to accept that." Harm took a deep breath. "Look, you know I care about you a lot, and nothing will change while I'm away. I'm still going to love you, I'm still going to worry about you, and I'm still going to be there – always. I'll try to call you everyday, you know it depends if I'm permitted, and there's always e-mail. Think of this time as a small 'hump' that we have to overcome. Besides, you know what they say, 'Absence makes the heart grow fonder.' We'll be okay."
Mac didn't say a word. She silently looked down at her plate, back at Harm, and back down to her plate. Her hand tightened in his, and she could feel the emotions welling up deep inside of her. Harm's thumb rubbed the back of her hand, attempting to provide a sort of comfort.
Their waiter politely interrupted the moment, and handed Harm the bill. By the time Harm paid for their meal, Mac had already gone outside and was waiting by the car.
Both climbed into the car without saying a word, and Harm started the engine. They were driving towards Andrews Air Force Base so that Harm could fly to an Airbase in Turkey before flying out to the George Washington. Mac fidgeted in her seat and picked at the lint on her uniform. They reached the gates to the base, and Harm showed both of their IDs before the guard waved them through.
Once in park, Harm turned to face Mac. "Mac, sweetie… I really have to go."
There was once again, no response. Her fists curled into balls and she fought to keep her emotions in check. The last thing Harm needed was a sappy Marine on his hands. She hated when she got emotional like this – Marines didn't cry, she learned that a long time ago. When she said nothing, Harm got out of the car to retrieve his bag from the trunk. He dropped his bag on the trunk of the car, and walked around to open the passenger side. Mac reluctantly climbed out, and stood in front of him.
Harm gently squeezed her hand. His lips slowly brushed against her warm cheek as a tear rolled down her face. He pulled her into a hug.
"I'm going to miss you." She managed to croak.
His embrace tightened. "I already miss you."
She sniffled, and a hand attempted to wipe away all of the tears that came from the internal dam that broke. They stayed like that for five minutes – no words needed to be said – they were two lovers savoring the last moments they had with each other. When Harm pulled back, he was forced to look at her tear stained face. He wished so much to be able wipe that pain away. However, he knew he couldn't, and the ache in his heart grew much deeper.
With one last kiss, Harm let go and retrieved his bag before officially turning around to walk away. He promised to himself that this would be the last time she would be forced to watch his back. Turning his head to take one last glance at her, he smiled. "I'll call you. E-mail you. I'll do something. I love you."
Mac stood still, and her tears were no more. Softly whispering, "I love you too," she watched as his back slowly disappeared from her sight. She climbed back in to the car and started the engine. His cologne lingered in the air and she closed her eyes, trying to remember his distinct masculine smell, and that gorgeous smile. All of his qualities were engraved into her senses, forever. With a glance in her rear view mirror, she finally pulled out of the parking lot and headed for work.
Author's Note: From what I've read and understand about the USS George Washington, I believe that it may be in port during this time. Because this is a fictional story – just pretend that it isn't. LOL. Comments are greatly appreciated. Shall I continue??
Oh, and congratulations to the United States Naval Academy Midshipmen for winning the Emerald Bowl against the University of New Mexico, on December 30, 2004! Wonderful and exciting game! GO NAVY!
Information on the USS George Washington may be found here: http:www.spear.navy.mil/gw/