Title: You & Me

Summary: Courtney left town five years ago and never looked back. When a family tragedy brings her back home, can anything make her stay? (One-shot.) (Flangst.)

Disclaimer: I don't own General Hospital or its characters.

Author's Note: It's not fluff, it's not angst… it's flangst! I know it's been awhile since I wrote anything over here, and I had promised someone (Asia) pure fluff, but then I came across a glossary of fan fiction terms and the moment I saw the word 'flangst' I needed to use it. So thus, this was created, and hopefully, you all enjoy the flangst.

The song used is You and I by Lifehouse.

Reviews are never expected but always appreciated!


what day is it
and in what month
this clock never seemed so alive
I can't keep up and I can't back down
I've been losing so much time

"Mommy, come on!" Five-year-old Jacinda Jax made a big production of pulling her mother's hand, trying to hurry them along the cobblestone walkway. "We're going to be late!"

Her mother couldn't help but laugh at the little girl's excitement and knelt down so that she was eye-level. "Calm down Jacey, we're not going to be late, I promise you." She tucked a stray blonde curl behind Jacinda's ear as she continued speaking. "I will not let you miss one second of your first day of kindergarten."

"Mommy, let's go then!" Jacinda tugged insistently at her hand. Her mother laughed again and stood, allowing the impatient child to pull her further down the street.

Across the street, outside of Kelly's Diner, Courtney Matthews couldn't help but smile as she watched Elizabeth let Jacinda lead her the rest of the way to the school.

Had it already been five years? The thought seemed strange to Courtney as she finished her coffee, swirling the last sip around in her mouth before swallowing. It was a habit that had drove Jax crazy, she remembered as she set the cup down.

Five years. The more she thought about it , time really had flown and she could barely remember the sequence of events that had brought her back to Port Charles again.

After the disaster that was her attraction to Nikolas, Jax never had believed that it hadn't gone farther than a few frenzied kisses and wasted no time in serving her with divorce papers. She had signed them amicably, knowing full well her heart wasn't fully devoted to her marriage anymore. She hadn't even fought him on the custody issue, she simply cut her losses, owned up to another failed marriage, packed her bags and moved away from Port Charles, deciding a change of scenery was what she needed. She had floated around the first six months, basing herself primarily out of Los Angeles. The foundation kept going strong, and once she had enough people working under her for it to run smoothly without her, she hightailed it back across the country, and started a new life in Florida, Miami, specifically.

She had built a nice and stable life for herself. She still worked with the foundation and the decision to expand it globally had made it possible for her to live quite comfortably, though that hadn't been the reason she had done it. She was happy in Miami, she had many friends and dated casually though she swore she would never marry again, and her current boyfriend, Ryan, was okay with that so far, though she could tell he was itching for more.

And while she still thought back on her life in Port Charles, her friends, and her family there, Courtney hadn't been back in four years. She knew if she would go back, she would be reminded of everything she had lost, and while her good memories outweighed the bad, the bad were still enough to keep her away.

Until six days ago, when Sonny had called to tell her the news. Mike had had a heart attack and died and the funeral was going to be three days later, would she be able to make it? With no hesitation she began making the necessary arrangements and was back home as soon as she could be. Home. It was strange to think of Port Charles as her home now.

The funeral had been the first time she saw Jacinda. She had known, thanks to Carly, that Elizabeth had indeed given birth to Jax's baby, and the arrangement they had decided on was Elizabeth and Lucky would have full custody with Jax being granted visitation anytime he wished. It worked out well, according to Carly, because Jax was always away on business, and though he was a good father when he was around, he never had her for more than a weekend at a time.

Courtney knew immediately who she was the second she laid eyes on her. It was after the funeral and everyone had gone to Sonny's house for the reception and she had been standing next to the fireplace with Carly when Morgan had flown by them, chased by this adorable little girl with bouncing blonde curls and clear blue eyes. The perfect combination of both her parents, Jacinda Jax was the town sweetheart, stealing not only the heart of seven-year-old Morgan, but of every adult she ever met.

She had watched her for a little while then, allowing her mind to play what-if. What if she and Jax had reconciled and she had been Jacinda's mother? What if she had been the one who read to her at night, chased away the monsters under the bed, cared for her when she was sick?

What if she had been the one to walk her to her first day of school?

Courtney's thoughts faded into the present and she stared down at her coffee cup. After Mike, Bobbie had wanted to close down Kelly's but Carly wouldn't hear of it, offering to take over until they could find someone more permanent, and today had been the first day it had been reopened. Courtney hadn't been sure she'd be able to even walk through the door that moment, but Carly had insisted in her ever-so-gentle Carly manner that it would be the first step to the closure she needed. She wouldn't admit it, but Carly had been right.

She let out a shaky breath she hadn't been aware of holding, and thought back on the last five years and how she hadn't seen her father since she had left Port Charles. They had kept in touch over the phone, but even those calls were farther and few between than either had liked, but that was the way it had been.

Five years. It couldn't have been five years that she had been gone and yet it had been. Time had passed quickly. Too quickly and yet there wasn't anything she could do about that. So many things she wanted to take back, to do over, and it just wasn't possible. Things had changed, everything was different now, and the only thing Courtney could do was accept it and move forward.

Except not everything had changed. Some things could never change, like the fact that he had been standing several feet away from her, watching her watch everything around her for ten minutes now and if given the chance, he'd watch her for the next hour.

On cue, or maybe just out of habit, Courtney's eyes lifted from her coffee mug and rested on him. He nodded his greeting at her and she smiled. He felt his own mouth curve upwards and as Jason made his way over to the table he thought back to when he had first spoken to her after her arrival back in town.

cuz it's you and me
and all other people with nothing to do
nothing to lose
and it's you and me
and all other people
and I don't know why
I can't keep my eyes off of you

He had scanned the room for her immediately after entering Sonny's den. Jason had wanted to go up to her during the funeral, but she had Carly and Sonny to comfort her, they were her family after all and he was just her ex-husband. He hadn't wanted to upset her anymore than she already was so he had stayed off to the side, but now that they were at Sonny's, he wanted to at least offer his sympathies to her, make sure she was okay.

Except she was nowhere to be found. His eyes roamed the room again and he caught a flash of blonde hair escaping through the patio doors on the other side of the room. He made his way across slowly, and eased himself out onto the patio quietly, so as not to disturb her.

She was standing with her back facing the door but she knew the second the doors opened who was joining her outside. She waited until she heard the doors slid shut before speaking.

"I was wondering when you were going to say hi." She sounded tired, her voice strained and rough from days of crying.

"I wanted to wait until you were alone," he said, stepping closer to her. His hand fell on her shoulder as she turned to look at him. "How are you?"

She shook her head, lifting her black sunglasses to rest on top of her head, revealing red-rimmed eyes. "I've been better, Jase," she said honestly.

He nodded and sat down, pulling his chair closer to her. "He was proud of you, you know. Everybody knew when he had last talked to you, it would be all he talked about for days."

"Must not have been too often," she said bitterly.

"Courtney, don't," he said. "Mike understood. He knew you couldn't come back and he knew how busy you were. He wouldn't want you to sit here and blame yourself for things you can't change."

She seemed to accept this, and they sat silently for a few moments before she looked up again. "You look good," she said, for lack of anything better to say. The sentence sounded absurd as it fell from her lips and she laughed slightly. It was nowhere near the caliber of her usual laugh but it still sounded like music.

"I am good," he said readily. "It's been a rough year but it's getting better."

Courtney nodded. "Carly told me about Sam. Jason, I'm sorry, I know how happy you were with her."

His shrugged. "We hadn't been happy for awhile now, but I was still surprised when she left me."

"What happened?" she asked softly. She shook her head. "I'm sorry, I shouldn't intrude."

He waved his hand dismissively. "Sam wanted a family, she always had. I couldn't do it, I couldn't give her one, I didn't think it was the right time. I wasn't ready for a child and she was. She tried to convince me, persuade me, she may have even tried to trick me, but nothing could change my mind and finally, she grew tired of it and that was it. She ended it, and yeah, it was tough, but I want her to be happy, and she wasn't happy."

"Carly said she moved?"

Jason nodded. "She had to really, if she wanted any chance of starting over. She knew there was too much history here so she left. It wasn't easy, but I had to let her go."

"For once, I would have to agree with her." She worried her lower lip between her teeth as she turned her head back to the house. "I really don't want to go back in there," she admitted. "How selfish is that? It's my father's funeral and I don't want to mingle with everyone whose grieving him."

"So we'll stay out here," Jason said automatically. It was still impulse, to protect her, even after all of these years. "You don't have to go in until you want to, if at all."

"And here I thought you stopped being my baby-sitter a long time ago."

He shook his head. "It's not babysitting. I'm just here if you want to talk."

She smiled sadly. "I guess some things are harder to let go of than others, aren't they?"

"Good morning," she said with a smile as he sat down next to her.

"Morning," he replied. "I didn't think I'd see you here today."

"I almost wasn't," she admitted. "But Carly was Carly and all but guilt-tripped me into it."

"And now that you're here?"

"I'm glad I came," she said honestly. "It's never going to be easy, not seeing dad behind the counter, but I have missed this place." She gestured to the coffee cup in front of her. "Still the best coffee on the east coast."

"Is that a hint you want more?" he asked, his lips curving in a slight smile.

"Only if you're going in to get yourself some." She watched as he picked up her cup and headed into the diner.

She fiddled with her spoon as she waited. After Mike's funeral, Jason had stayed with her for the duration of the reception at Sonny's. Even after she decided she was ready to go back inside he had kept an eye on her, running interference anytime he thought she needed a breather from the many well-wishers. She had told him it wasn't necessary but secretly, she had been relieved.

It had been nice, she realized. She had been taking care of herself for so long now she had almost forgotten what it was like to have someone watching out for her.

She shook her head, clearing the thoughts from her mind. It would be too easy to slip back into that old routine, she had to remind herself that she was different now, they both were. They could be friends now, if they wanted, and she knew better than to go and ruin that.

But it was still nice to remember.

what are the things that I want to say
just aren't coming out right
and tripping on words
you got my head spinning
I don't know where to go from here

Jason came back to the table just in time to watch her send a phone call into voice mail on her cell phone before slipping it back into her purse.

"I've seen you do that seven times now," he said as he set the coffee down in front of her. She was pleased to see he remembered the color she liked it, diluted with enough milk to make it taupe. "You're avoiding someone."

She shrugged. "It's just Ryan." She winced as the words left her. "I mean, not just Ryan, but Ryan." She blushed.

"The boyfriend?" She nodded. "How long have you been with him?"

"Seven months," she said after thinking for a moment.

"Serious?"

She shook her head. "Not really, I mean, I guess it is, but we're not heading towards the altar or anything like that."

"Do you think you will one day?"

"No," she answered quickly. "No more weddings for me."

He lifted his eyebrow at her in surprise. "Why not?"

"I think I've proved that I'm not wife material enough times," she said dryly. "I don't really think I could handle a fourth divorce, people will start referring to me as Liz Taylor."

"You were a good wife Courtney." The words were so quiet that she wasn't sure she had heard them correctly.

"Ironic isn't it?" she asked finally. "My best marriage turned out to be the one that technically never existed."

"It existed." Again, he spoke quietly, but he held her gaze for a second longer than he should have before clearing his voice and speaking again. "So, you're avoiding Ryan's calls?"

She shrugged. "He didn't know my dad, I can't talk to him about this, he wouldn't understand. His parents live three miles from him, he sees them all the time."

"He just wants to be there for you," Jason pointed out.

"He's trying too hard though." She sighed. "I know I should talk to him, it's just easier not to. I'll call him from the airport, ask him to pick me up after my flight lands and we'll be okay. He understands."

"You're leaving already?" Surprise was evident in Jason's voice.

"This afternoon." Her eyes couldn't meet his. "Don't look at me like that," she said softly, knowingly. "There's nothing keeping me here."

"What about the diner?" he asked suddenly.

"What about it?"

"You could take over," he pressed. "Sure Carly's here now, but eventually she'll have to go back to her own job and then what? Mike would have liked you running the place."

"That's a dirty trick," she said, lowering her eyes again. The truth was, the idea had crossed her mind more than once since she had been home. Again, the word sounded foreign to her. Her home was Miami now, not here. Ultimately though, she knew she had to go back, and Sonny had promised to keep the diner up and running for as long as he was around so she took comfort in that.

"You never think about coming back?"

Her eyes leveled against his, the different shades of blue clashing against each other. "No," she answered, much to his surprise. "I can't. I won't." She picked up her spoon again. "Too much time has passed," she said quietly. "Yes, I've been away a long time, but I'm still not reconciled with everything that's happened. Some wounds don't heal as quickly."

"How can they, if you constantly run from them." She was surprised at the bitterness in his voice and looked up at him, her own anger rising slightly.

"Don't you dare presume anything about me," she said, her voice harsher than she intended.

"You're always running Courtney," he shot back. "Things went bad with AJ so you ran to me, things didn't go perfectly with us and you ran to Brian and then later to Jax. Jax wasn't an ideal husband either and you ran all the way out of town. Look at you now, you're still running.

She pushed her chair back from the table. "Go to hell," she whispered, her voice choked with tears. "You don't know a damn thing about me anymore."

He shook his head. "You're exactly the same Courtney, you haven't changed."

"No, but you clearly have."

"What are you afraid of Courtney? Like you've said, everything that happened did so a long time ago, everyone's moved on with their lives. Everyone except you."

She didn't answer him, just grabbed her purse and walked away.

Jason stayed at the table long after she left. He knew calling her out would upset her and yet he had done it anyway and he wasn't sure why. He hadn't meant to upset her, that hadn't been his intentions at all, but for some reason he couldn't say the words as he thought them, they all came out entirely wrong.

He was right about one thing though, she hadn't changed. She was still the same Courtney and he wouldn't have her any other way,

Except, he realized as he finished his now cold coffee, she wasn't his to have and she hadn't been for a very long time.

cuz it's you and me
and all other people with nothing to do
nothing to prove
and it's you and me
and all other people
and I don't know why
I can't keep my eyes off of you

"Ryan, hey it's me. It's almost five now and my plane still hasn't taken off, it's storming too bad and there's a good chance we'll be held over until tomorrow morning. I've got my cell phone on, call me when you get home. Bye."

Courtney shut her phone and dropped it back into her purse. She had been at the airport for three hours now and the storm that had started three and a half hours ago hadn't even begun to let up yet. She sat down again, just outside the terminal and closed her eyes. She was so tired, and sleep was unattainable at this point and not just because of the delay.

She couldn't stop thinking about her fight with Jason, if you could call it that. In all actuality, he had given her the truth and she only proved it to him by once again running away.

Courtney had gone back to apologize, unsure of how much time had passed. Half an hour, an hour, maybe more, but it didn't matter, he was already gone. Instead she spent the rest of her time in Port Charles playing with her nephews and promising Carly she would visit regularly from now on.

She switched gears and thought of Ryan for a moment. It was over, she knew that in her heart, she had known it ever since she refused his offer to accompany her to the funeral. She hadn't wanted him there, hadn't wanted him to be a part of that life, hadn't wanted him to meet her family. She hadn't returned a single one of his many phone calls the six days she had been away and truthfully, she didn't feel as guilty as she should have. That was how she knew for sure, that the best thing to do as soon as she got back to Miami was to tell him and hope that he understood.

He would understand, she knew that too. He was, if anything, understanding and non-confrontational and she was almost positive he would agree that it would be best to just throw in the towel and go on with their lives.

Courtney opened her eyes and stood up from the uncomfortable plastic chair. One look outside told her the flight wasn't leaving anytime soon and the more she thought about it, the more desirable a drink sounded to her. She made her way to the airport lounge and ordered a vodka tonic.

She was halfway through her third drink, and still painfully sober when she felt a familiar hand drop onto her shoulder. She didn't bother to turn around, just motioned to the seat next to her and waited for him to sit down.

"How did you find me?" she asked after he ordered his own drink.

Jason shrugged. "Flight was delayed, you weren't in the terminal, this was the only other place you could be," he pointed out.

She nodded at his logic and took another sip. "You were right you know," she said, not wasting any time. "Earlier today, when you accused me of running, you were absolutely right."

"I was an ass," he corrected her. "I shouldn't have jumped down your throat like that, you didn't deserve it and I didn't mean it. Any of it."

"But it's all true," she said.

He shook his head. "No, it's not and you know it." He paused as the waitress set down his beer and then continued talking. "Seeing you this week, it's thrown me a little," he admitted. "I watched you though, and despite the circumstances, you seemed happy to be home. You were with your family and you still belong here, whether you like it or not. That's what I was trying to say earlier and yeah, I know that's not how it came out at all, and I'm sorry."

She traced her index finger around the rim of her glass as he finished speaking. "Are you happy?" she asked finally.

"What?"

"With your life now, are you happy?"

Jason shrugged. "I'm getting there," he said finally. "It's been a rough year but I'm happy with the way things are now." He watched her move her finger to the side of her glass, drawing a star in the condensation. "What about you?"

"Until I came here again I thought I was," she answered. "When I left things were pretty bad, and once I started over, they were good again. Maybe not right away, but things got better quicker than they would have if I had stayed. And then I'm here for not even a week and I'm almost back where I started and I don't like that."

"Would you change anything if you could?"

Courtney looked at him with surprise in her eyes. She nodded slowly. "A few things," she admitted finally.

"What things?"

She bit down on her lower lip. "For one, I wouldn't have jumped off of that boat in South America."

Jason studied his own drink. "Do you think things would be different now if you hadn't jumped?"

"No," she said resolutely. "Our divorce wasn't about the miscarriage at all, our problems ran much deeper than that."

"You're probably right," he conceded.

She took another sip of her drink and nodded. "Another thing I would change? I wouldn't have married Jax." She laughed slightly and wondered if maybe the alcohol was finally affecting her, she was being too blunt for her liking. "Everyone warned me, I should have realized you were all right, nothing good came from that marriage. Well, one good thing," she amended.

He studied her for a second until realization dawned on him. "Jacinda."

"Jacinda," she confirmed. "You know, I've never even seen a picture of her but the moment I saw her I knew exactly who she was. And then Elizabeth took her hand and brought her over to talk to me and all I could think of was that she was supposed to have been mine. How selfish is that? Elizabeth was standing there telling me how sorry she was about dad and how much she was going to miss him and all I could do was stare at that little girl and think, does she even know who I am or that she's here because she was supposed to be my daughter? I mean, what have they told her about why mommy and daddy don't live together or even why she has two daddies?" She finished off her drink, using the straw to swirl around the melting ice. "And even if they haven't really told her anything, will they when she's older?" She paused. "Am I going to be painted as someone horrible?"

Jason reached over the table and covered her hand with his own, surprising both of them. "She's a happy girl," he said. "Jax and Elizabeth and Lucky have all done their best raising her and we both know that no one is going to say anything negative about you to her."

"I know," she said. "I guess I just never fully understood everything I gave up until this week and I'm still processing it all" She smiled wanly. "Sorry you're the one that has to listen to it all."

"I don't mind," he said honestly. He was going to say something else but was interrupted as a voice came over the intercom telling them that the flight to Miami would be indeed taking off tonight after all and for all of the passengers to begin making their way back to the gate as boarding would start in twenty minutes.

"Well that's that I suppose," she said with a sigh as she moved her chair back and began gathering her things. She was surprised when Jason picked up her carry-on and followed her back to the gate. She hadn't expected him to walk her there, she wasn't sure if she was happy about it or not.

She just didn't want to say goodbye.

something about you now
that I can't quite figure out
everything she does is beautiful
everything she does is right

"So you're going to visit more right?" It sounded stupid, even to his own ears, but he didn't know what else to say as they stood there, with fifteen minutes until she could get on the plane.

"Oh yeah," she said with a nod of her head. "Carly made me swear to it and I realized it's not nearly as bad as I thought it would be so I'll be back soon."

He nodded back. "Good, you shouldn't be without your family anyways."

"You're right." They fell into an uneasy, yet companionable silence as another announcement came over the intercom, ten minutes until the boarding would begin. Jason couldn't figure out what the heavy feeling in his stomach was.

"Can I ask you one more thing?" Courtney asked, around the seven minute mark.

"Go ahead."

"We were happy, right? You and me?" She raised her hand to smooth a flyaway strand of hair out of her eyes and looked at him hesitantly.

Jason looked at her, surprised. She had to ask? Surely she knew the answer.

"Yes," he said firmly. "We were happy. Very happy." The happiest I can remember ever being.

She flashed a smile at him, her eyes crinkling at the corners as she did. "I was just checking," she said softly.

He chuckled. "You just wanted to hear me he say it," he accused.

"I did," she confessed. Five minutes until boarding. "Okay, I… I should go get in line," she said.

"Yeah," Jason shoved his hands in his pockets and looked down at her, sensing her nervousness over the flight. "It'll be a good flight," he promised. "You'll be home before you know it."

"Thanks," she whispered. On impulse she wrapped her arms around him in a hug and was happy when she felt his own hands circle her waist. She pulled back just enough to look at him and before she could talk herself out of it, she pressed her lips against his in a quick kiss. He reacted out of habit, trying to draw her in tighter but she ended it almost as soon as she began.

"For being there for me all week, and for reminding me of happier times," she explained, stepping out of his embrace. "Bye Jason."

"Bye." He watched as she readjusted her purse over her shoulder and picked up her small bag before taking her place in line. Her back was turned to him but he still kept his eyes on her. He knew she knew he was watching. He could tell she was doing all she could not to turn back to see. She couldn't stand still, she shifted her weight from foot to foot, her hand tangled itself in her long hair, the toes on her right foot tapped up and down in time with the music playing throughout the airport. She wouldn't turn around and look at him though.

The knots in his stomach twisted tighter and Jason couldn't ignore what he had known the last couple of days. He and Courtney could be happy again, if one of them would just make the first move.

And technically, he thought to himself as he saw her line begin to move. Technically, her kissing me could have been the first move so I could follow up, couldn't I?

He wasn't positive about it, but he knew he couldn't let her go without trying.

"Courtney, wait!" She turned around at his voice, and paled a little as he jogged over to her.

"You're not going to ask me to stay, are you?" she asked with a sad smile.

No, not now I'm not. "Would you have?"

She pressed her lips together tightly and shook her head. "I can't," she whispered. "You know I can't."

He reached a hand out to her and was surprised when she recoiled. "Please Jason, don't," she said, her voice still quiet, but with tears in her eyes. "It's too late for us, you know that it is."

He dropped his hands down to his sides and just stared at her. "Take care of yourself," he said finally. He reached out again and she let him squeeze her hand before he turned and walked away.

"You too," she whispered, knowing he couldn't hear her. With one last look, she turned and walked through the gate to her plane.

cuz it's you and me and all of the people with nothing to do
nothing to lose
and it's you and me and all of the people
and I don't know why
I can't keep my eyes off of you and me
and all other people with nothing to do
nothing to prove
and it's you and me and all other people
and I don't know why
I can't keep my eyes off of you

The heavy oak door fell back into place with a dull thud that echoed throughout the penthouse as Jason tossed his keys onto the desk and walked into the kitchen to grab a beer from the fridge. He went back into the living room and sat down on the sofa. With his eyes closed he leaned his head back and swallowed the bitter liquid.

He had tried. He had seen his chance and gone for it but still, Courtney was running. He didn't blame her really, all of their past attempts at reconciliation had failed miserably and it wasn't as if they had even opened themselves up for one this time.

She hadn't come back for him. He had to remember that. She had come back because her father died, he had merely been a shoulder to lean on, a friend to get her through the bad days because that's what friends do.

The feelings were still there. The love he had for her was different than the love he had with Sam and he had forgotten the intensity of it, the fierceness he felt wanting to keep her from hurting. He hadn't expected them to rush him like they had but when he walked out onto that patio at Sonny's and saw her he was reminded of just how much she had meant to him.

But none of that mattered anymore. She was on her way back to Florida, back to her new life, back to her new boyfriend. She had pulled herself together and all he wanted was for her to be happy, so if that's what she wanted, then he had no choice but to be happy for her.

He finished his beer and closed his eyes again. He wasn't sure how long it had taken him to get over her the first time, he wasn't sure he could do it all over again.

Courtney leaned her head against the window next to her and closed her eyes. Her headache was back and she knew she couldn't blame it on the alcohol. She had been on the plane for twenty minutes now. While the weather was finally acceptable for flying, there was a minor problem with the plane itself and the pilot had assured them they'd be taking off within the hour.

He had asked her to stay. And she had said no. If Carly ever found out she would never hear the end of it. It was her fault though, she rationalized. If she hadn't kissed him goodbye he never would have asked her to stay. She didn't think so anyway.

She heard giggling from a few seats over and opened her eyes in the same direction. The giggles belonged to a woman a few years younger than Courtney, who was trying to tell a story to the man sitting next to her, but kept being interrupted by him kissing her. She watched as the young girl shook her finger at him in mock admonishment. The flash of the gem on her left ring finger proved them to be newlyweds and Courtney couldn't help but smile as she remembered being exactly the same way when she and Jason had returned to Port Charles after their wedding. Although, she realized with a slight blush, they had had a private jet so they had done more than just giggle and kiss,

She sighed, trying to push all thoughts of Jason out of her head. Certainly she couldn't have fallen for him again in a matter of days? It wasn't possible, they had been over for years, she had her closure, hell, she was dating someone else!

Still, she couldn't ignore the slight butterflies she had felt in her stomach when she realized he had followed her outside of Sonny's and then stayed with her throughout the duration of the reception and the days to follow.

Some habits were hard to break, and relying on Jason to be her rock was definitely at the top of her list. She was amazed that he could still keep her steady and calm and she wondered how he managed. Had she really not changed as much as she thought she had? Was she still the same Courtney she had been al those years ago when they were together.

And if so, why had she been too scared to stay?

It didn't matter, she realized sadly, opening her eyes. The pilot had just come over the intercom again, telling them to please fasten their seatbelts, the plane would be taking off in two minutes.

Her seatbelt clicked loudly and she rested her head against the window again. In just a few short hours she would be back home, and she'd be able to put this whole week behind her. She had to. She didn't know what else to do.

what day is it
and in what month
this clock never seemed so alive

The elevator doors opened and Courtney stepped out onto the floor and sighed. It had taken forever but she was finally home. She only hoped she had made the right choice.

"Only one way to find out," she muttered to herself as she raised her hand to knock on the door in front of her. She hadn't been able to get a hold of Ryan so she could only hope that he hadn't gone to too much trouble for her, but again, she knew he would understand when they did talk.

She knocked twice, and listened as footsteps approached the door. She held her breath as the door opened slowly and smiled nervously when it finally opened fully.

"Hey," she said softly, as Jason appeared in the doorway and looked at her, an expression on his face she couldn't quite place.

"Courtney." He shook his head, wondering if maybe he had had one beer to many or if she really was in front of him. "You didn't get on the plane?"

"Oh I got on the plane all right." She stifled a giggle as she thought back to the near hysteria she had caused when she decided, seconds after fastening her seatbelt that she couldn't do it. Finally, they had let her off the plane but no one was very happy with her. "But then I got off it."

"Why?"

"I'm done running," she said simply. "I don't want to be away from home anymore. I want to be with Sonny and Carly in the kids, I want to be here, I…" she faltered under his gaze before continuing. "I want to be here," she looked around the penthouse pointedly. "with you again. Jason, I want to come home." She cast her eyes downward and waited for him to say something.

He looked at her for a moment, smiling slightly as he reached for her hand and pulled her to him slowly.

"May as well come in from the hallway," he explained as he tipped her chin up to kiss her. She didn't pull away this time as his arms went around her, holding her flush against him. She merely slipped her own arms up around his neck, holding just as tightly as they made up for nearly seven years of missed kisses.

Finally, Jason pulled back slightly and held her gaze. "You sure this is what you want?" he asked, threading the fingers of his left hand with hers.

She looked down at their joined hands before nodding quickly. "We deserve another chance at happiness, don't you think?" she asked with a smile.

"Together," he agreed, bringing her hand up and kissing her knuckles. "You and me?"

"You and me."