TITLE: Let Go, Move On
SUMMARY: As Shannon and Sayid move towards their future, Shannon needs to confront part of her past.
DISCLAIMER: I don't own the characters from Lost and am not making a profit. If they were mine, then there would be more Shayid moments.
Shannon woke up disoriented with her bed sheets tangled around her. She was in her pajama pants with a simple tank top. For a moment she didn't even remember going to bed, but then everything that happened yesterday came flooding back. The confrontation with Sabrina, breaking down in Sayid's arms and his insistence that she rest. Now, she reached out for him, but found that he had already gotten up. She frowned. She was used to him getting up before her, but she still needed him.
Slowly she climbed out of the bed, and stretched her arms over her head. She tugged on her pajama bottoms, wondering how much longer she would be able to wear them. She figured with the elastic waist she should be good for a few more months. Soon she would have to start buying new clothes. Sadly, not even the thought of shopping replaced the anguish that had engulfed her since Sabrina had accused her of marrying Sayid simply because she was pregnant. She wished that she read her stepmother's mind, then maybe she would understand.
She made the decision not to think about it anymore. She knew that Sayid had been worried about her last night, and there was no reason for him to be. They should be planning for their new baby, not dwelling in the past. Shannon pulled one of Sayid's shirts off the edge of the bed and slipped it over her tank top. She wrapped her arms around herself and breathed deeply, the shirt smelled like him, but it wasn't the same. She knew she would see him in the living room or kitchen, but simply having his shirt on made her feel even better.
She walked slowly out of the bedroom. She still felt so drained from yesterday. Part of her wanted to crawl back into bed, but she knew that wouldn't solve anything. Maybe she would try and talk Sayid into going shopping for the baby – maybe that would cheer her up, since the thought of shopping for herself had not. She smiled a little. She'd be able to look at the frilly little dresses and suits that were so tiny. But which would they buy? She had this feeling that the baby she carried was a girl, but what if she was wrong? She guessed they could always save the items they bought for another child. She pushed that thought away. She just wanted to see what having one child was like before she even thought about having more.
As she neared the living room, she heard Sayid's voice. Assuming that he was on the phone, she continued down the hallway toward him. Turning the corner, her heart beat faster in anticipation of seeing him. Even after all their time together, he still affected her more than anyone she had ever meet. At her sides, she balled her fists as she realized that Sabrina stood in her living room.
Both Sayid and Sabrina turned to face her. Sabrina's gaze immediately dropped to the floor, while Sayid's filled with guilt. Shannon glared at him trying to find out why he would betray her like that. Her eyes swept over his face searching for an explanation. Did he invite Sabrina over her? Why did he talk to her after everything she had said to Shannon? Sabrina was trying to steal her Sayid away. Sabrina sat down on the couch.
Excusing himself, he walked over to her and took her hand to pull her into the kitchen.
"What is she doing here?" Shannon hissed.
"I think she wanted to apologize." He placed his hands on her waist to keep her from walking away. "I believe it is genuine, Shannon."
"How long has she been here?"
Glancing at his watch, he said, "About half an hour."
"And you didn't think you should tell me?"
"You need your sleep." He brushed his lips against her forehead. "Would you like me to ask her to leave?"
She moved so she could rest her head against his shoulder. His arms wrapped around her back, and she felt safe. It didn't matter what Sabrina had to say, Shannon had him. He was really all the family she needed, him and their baby. But there was still a part of her that needed those answers, needed to know why Sabrina hated her. And as she thought about her unborn child, she realized that having someone else to help her could make all the difference. Shannon did not want her baby to experience anything that she had in her own childhood.
"No," she sighed, "I will talk to her."
"Do you want me to stay with you?"
"Always, but I think I should do this alone."
He hesitated. "I will be in our bedroom if you need me."
She hugged him tightly. "Thank you. I love you."
"I love you too," he said, giving her strength with a kiss, and then kissing his fingers and resting them against her stomach. She placed her hand on top of his grateful that she found a man like him.
Sayid left the kitchen, and Shannon heard him telling Sabrina that she would be right out. Then she heard their bedroom door shut. Stalling, Shannon went to the refrigerator and poured herself a glass of milk. She took a small sip but it triggered something in her delicate stomach and the nauseous feeling from yesterday returned. She thought about drinking the rest, just so she could have an excuse to get away from Sabrina, but throwing up was not something she wanted to do if she could help it, especially since it was all she seemed to be doing. If she wasn't throwing up, then she felt like she had to.
Finally she decided that she just needed to get this over with. She doubted that Sabrina would stay much longer. Maybe Shannon would finally get her answers. Shannon walked wordlessly back to the living room and sat down on the sofa furthest away from where Sabrina sat.
"How are you feeling?" Sabrina asked.
Shannon wasn't sure how she was supposed to answer that. If she answered truthfully, that she was exhausted because she had spent most of the night crying, then Sabrina would get the upper hand. However, if she lied, Sabrina would probably figure it out.
"Tired and nauseous," she answered honestly but without giving away too much.
Sabrina nodded. "That is normal for the first trimester." She twisted the ring on her finger. "I never told you congratulations yesterday."
"Thank you," she said uncertainly. "Sayid and I are really happy."
"He'll be a wonderful father."
Shannon couldn't believe that Sabrina actually had something nice to say. She wondered what Sabrina had to talked to with Sayid to lead her to that conclusion. She would have to ask him later. She wasn't sure how she should respond, so she just said nothing.
Sabrina reached down beside her and pulled out a binder from her purse. She stood and walked over to the sofa. She hesitated briefly before she sat down beside Shannon. She handed her the binder.
"What is this?" Shannon asked.
"Look at it."
Shannon flipped open the cover and tears instantly filled her eyes. As she turned the pages she saw every wedding dress she had designed as a child. She would take the pictures of the different dresses from the old magazines, and would cut and paste them together to make her own creations. Sabrina had always saved all the magazines for her. She turned her eyes to Sabrina curiously.
"I did remember, Shannon," she said softly.
"What didn't you say that yesterday?"
"You caught me off guard. I reacted poorly."
Shannon rolled her eyes. That had to be the understatement of the year. She also wasn't sure if she could believe her. Sabrina was notorious for faking apologizes to gain sympathy so she could get what she wanted. Shannon would not be pulled into that web again.
"After news of the crash," Sabrina's voice broke. "They told me you and Boone were gone. I didn't believe them. I thought it was one of your tricks. I hoped it was one of your scams to get money or something. I didn't want my children to be dead."
"You really thought I'd be that cruel?"
Shannon was surprised by Sabrina's confession. Did Sabrina really view her as that malicious? Sure, she had done some horrible things in the past, things she wasn't proud of, but never had she done something a as cruel as letting someone believe their child was dead.
"It was easier than thinking you were dead."
Shannon was shocked that Sabrina had actually cared that she was dead. Shannon would have thought that Sabrina would have thrown a party to celebrate. She was even more surprised to see that Sabrina, the ice queen, was crying.
"I pulled out everything," Sabrina continued. "All the drawings either one of you did, family pictures, everything. I found your books. I looked through them so often that the pages began to fall out of the books you used. I had them placed in this binder. I have all of Boone's things at home."
"I'm sorry about Boone," Shannon said softly.
"I know. I wish he could be here. He would like to see you as you are now. Happy, finally." She wiped away the tears that had fallen. She took the binder from Shannon's hands. "Enough about that. Tell me about how you meet Sayid."
Shannon eyed her as if she were crazy. "We were in a plane crash," she said slowly.
Sabrina rolled her eyes dramatically and Shannon was catapulted back to when she used to goof around with her stepmother, how long ago that felt.
"You know what I mean. You didn't meet as the plane was falling." Immediately she grimaced. "That was insensitive. I'm sorry."
Shannon tried to remember the last time that Sabrina had apologized to her for anything. This conversation was just getting weirder and weirder. She didn't know what to make of it. Why was Sabrina being so nice to her?
"Sayid needed help translating some maps that were in French," she said, deciding that the short version would be better.
"I thought you spent your time drinking in France, not studying."
"I tried to tell him that, but he didn't believe me." She glanced down at her engagement ring. "He never gave up on me."
"He truly cares about you. His eyes lit up when I asked him how you meet on the island."
She crinkled her nose in confusion. "If you knew from him, why'd you ask me?"
"I thought it would be nice if we talked, like we used to. Is there a problem with that?"
"What's going on?" Shannon finally asked, unable to take the confusion anymore. The woman seated next to her was not her stepmother, at least not the one she knew before she had left for France.
"What do you mean?"
"Yesterday, you accused me of marrying him just because I'm pregnant. Now you realize that we're in love, and I'm just supposed to tell you everything that happened on the island. You and I haven't been friends for a long time Sabrina."
Sabrina looked down at her hands. "I've regretted that, Princess. I had nightmares after the crash. I knew I hadn't been there for you. I was on Prozac to help me deal with the guilt and the anxiety. You never would have been there if it wasn't for me."
Shannon heard nothing else but her childhood nickname that her father had given her. It used to make her feel special, but now coming from Sabrina's mouth it felt as if it was an insult. There was nothing in what Sabrina said to make Shannon angry, yet she couldn't help but feel as if Sabrina was wrong to call her by her daddy's nickname for her.
"Don't call me that," Shannon said as she stood up turning away from Sabrina.
"Shannon, why do you need to make everything so difficult?" Sabrina said exasperatedly.
"I am not."
"I'm trying. This can not all be on my shoulders," Sabrina said, her voice quivering with anger.
"You didn't try when I was younger, why should I believe you now? How do I know you won't decide to treat me like trash again?"
Shannon took a shaky breath. She needed to get all this out. She was tired of dancing around the subject with Sabrina. Everything needed to be out in the open. She tried to keep her tears at bay, but she knew the dam would burst soon.
"You were such a wonderful stepmother," Shannon continued honestly. "I was going to call you mom." Sabrina looked up sharply at her words. "I was going to tell you when we played dolls one day, but you wouldn't play with me. You said you were too busy. Then when I asked to dress up in your clothes, you said no. Everything I asked you to do you said no. You stopped talking to me, unless it was to yell at me." Tears were streaming down her face now. "The worst part was I never knew why. Every night I would lie in bed trying to figure out what I did to make you hate me so much. I could never figure it out. I was a little girl and I needed you. And you just turned your back on me. Why? What did I do?"
Shannon's breathing was ragged now, and she felt her chest tightening up. She closed her eyes. She imagined Sayid next to her, whispering for her to breathe in through her nose. Once she felt that she had gained control of her breathing, she opened her eyes.
"I never hated you. I never knew you thought that." Sabrina stood and tentatively took Shannon's hand in hers.
"Then why did you stop being my friend?"
"You didn't need a friend. You needed a mother. You were a preteen and soon would have been a teenager. I knew what was in store for you. I simply thought it would help you to have more boundaries." She shook her head. "I had no idea I had done so poorly by you. I didn't know how to be a mother to you Shannon. I thought I was doing what was best for you. I really did."
"You could have been both. You didn't need to change so drastically." Shannon tugged on Sayid's shirt. "I looked up to you, and then you just pushed me away."
"I have no excuses. I thought what I was doing was being a mother to you. Maybe I was channeling my mother, who let me do whatever I wanted, and after I made mistakes she tried to reign me in. I was just trying to stop the same thing from happening. I am so sorry."
Shannon was sorry for so much right then. She looked Sabrina in the eye and for the first time, truly saw the woman who had captured her daddy's heart. Sabrina had dark circles under bloodshot eyes. Could she really be telling the truth? Shannon ached to believe her, she wanted to know that she wasn't a horrible person that her stepmother despised. But she was afraid that she would be setting herself up for more pain if she believed Sabrina.
"Maybe I should have asked you, but I thought you hated me. I was like the extra baggage you had to deal with since you loved daddy."
"I never thought of you that way. I just, I wanted to prevent you from making some of the mistakes I had. I thought by acting the way I did that I would have stopped you, but it seems I just made you push harder to make those mistakes."
Shannon's eyes widened in surprise. She had no idea that Sabrina had thought she was doing what was best for Shannon. All those years of pain could have been prevented, all those sleepless nights lying awake wondering what she had done wrong. So much could have been different, yet if they had she might not have found her Sayid.
"What mistakes did you make?"
"Typical teenager stuff." Sabrina said, rolling her eyes. "Then I got pregnant and married Boone's father when I was too young. It ended badly, like your first marriage. Boone's father was abusive and I saw you going through the same thing, or rather heard about it from Boone. I just wanted to fix it for you." Her body trembled as she sighed. "But it started before that. I was terrified, Shannon, that you would make those mistakes. I overheard you talking with your friends, and I realize now you were just being young girls, but it was too much. I didn't know what else to do."
A small wave of relief flooded over Shannon. She hadn't done anything wrong. She had just grown up and it wasn't what Sabrina had expected. She felt as if a weight had been lifted. Maybe things could be fixed. Placing her hand against her stomach, she knew there was still something she needed to clear up.
"I wasn't pregnant when I got married. I don't know why I let you believe that. I did love him, he just didn't love me, I guess. But it doesn't matter, I have Sayid now."
"And you are very lucky to have found him. It seems that love always finds you when you're not looking, but need it the most." Sabrina smiled sadly. "I meet your father at the grocery store. I never knew why he was there, but he helped me with Boone and getting all of my food together." A few tears slipped down her face. "Your father was my Sayid. He brought me happiness that I can't even describe. When I lost him, I didn't know if I was going to make it. But you don't have to worry about that."
Shannon and Sayid were safe here in their apartment now. They had their baby to think of, and nothing could touch them. That pain that laced her stepmother's voice couldn't touch them. In the back of her mind, Shannon remembered a time when that pain had been all too real. They had been in a plane crash and everyday there were threats to their survival. What would she have done without him?
"I almost lost Sayid on the island," she said, her eyes burning with unshed tears. "He was trying to play hero with some of the others. This little boy had been kidnapped and they were trying to find him. The rest of them came back, but no Sayid. It was a week and a half before he returned."
"Then you understand what it feels like," Sabrina said squeezing her hand.
Sabrina's cell phone jingled from her purse. She went to answer it, rolling her eyes as she checked the number. "You would think the office could handle me being away for a few hours."
She moved away to take the call, leaving Shannon alone with her thoughts. Sabrina really wasn't the evil bitch that Shannon had spent the past years hating. If only they had talked when Shannon was a teenager or before she left for France, they might have actually been able to heal their fragile relationship. Shannon wasn't sure that she completely trusted Sabrina yet, but she was on her way. She had seen something in Sabrina today that she hadn't seen in a long time. She had seen her heart, something she had always doubted even existed. Sabrina had almost been destroyed by the plane crash. Shannon owed it to her daddy and Boone to try and make amends with Sabrina. Anyway if her daddy loved Sabrina then there had to be some good in her. Sayid loved her flaws and all, maybe she could do the same for Sabrina.
Flipping her phone closed, and shoving it in her purse, Sabrina looked to Shannon annoyed. "I need to go into the office. Apparently one of my brides has decided that she needs more floral arrangements to outdo her sister who got married yesterday."
"Maybe we can go shopping later," Shannon said, biting her lip.
She didn't know what possessed her to voluntarily spend time with her stepmother, but she wanted to find a way to make amends. Her baby needed a family.
"Of course. I plan on spoiling my grandbaby."
Shannon smiled. "That's right grandma."
Sabrina looked horrified. "I am not that old. We need to think of a nicer title than that. Maybe something like Glam ma," she said laughing.
Shannon gave Sabrina a hug, laughing as well. "I'm sure you'll be the best dressed grandma around."
"You better believe it." She checked her watch. "I really must go. I'm glad that we talked, Shannon. You're all I have left." She hesitated before touching Shannon's face. "I love you, princess," she said affectionately.
Rolling her eyes, Shannon said, "I love you, too."
Shannon couldn't remember the last time she had said those words to Sabrina. They felt foreign to her. She started to try and call her mom, but she wasn't ready, and she wasn't sure if she ever would be. There was still so much hurt to be healed.
After walking Sabrina to the door with promises to call later to go shopping, Shannon immediately went to the bedroom to find Sayid.
She saw him lounging on the bed with his eyes closed. She walked slowly over to the bed and climbed on top of him, kissing him awake. He responded too quickly, and she knew he had been faking sleep.
He swept the hair out of her face. "You have been crying."
"Therapeutic tears. I think we may have actually figured some stuff out."
Sayid smiled at her. "I told you it would work out."
"We're going to go baby shopping."
"Clothes I meant. Do you want to come too?"
"Does she shop like you?" he asked eyeing her skeptically.
"Where do you think I learned it?"
"I guess I will have to so I can keep you in check. We will not have enough room if I let you go alone."
"Funny," she said hitting him playfully.
She moved so she could snuggle against him. She wanted to tell him all about the conversation she had with Sabrina, but it could wait, she just wanted to relax in his arms. She had plenty of time to talk with him later. They had their whole lives together to talk.