Meant to Be - PG-13
Disclaimer: I don't own Las Vegas. Things would be a lot different if I did.
Summary: My version of how Season 3 should've gone.
Danny McCoy walked into the newly remodeled Montecito Resort and Casino. It was still hard for him to believe so much had changed. The last six months had been a huge transition period for Danny. The loss of his father had been devastating and the days following the accident had been a blur. He barely remembered the funeral or the condolences of the many people who knew and respected his dad. He knew it had been beautiful and that everything had been taken care of. He knew she made sure of it.
Mary. As soon as Detective Cho told him the news he had become consumed with a need to see her. She would make everything okay. She would tell him that it was all a mistake. The pain of loss became almost unbearable when he realized she was gone. She had left for the vacation of a lifetime. A trip he wished he could have given her. Danny knew he had to tell her about his dad--that she needed to know immediately. Mary and his father had always had a very special relationship. She would be just as devastated as he was. In the end he wasn't the one to tell her. He could barely put one foot in front of the other when Mike finally helped him up to Ed's office. Ed was able to get a message to her as soon as the plane landed in LA to refuel and she was waiting at Danny's door when Ed dropped him off later that night.
Not long after the funeral Danny had been forced to leave his job as head of security in order to keep his father's construction business from going under. Since the Montecito was in a state of flux as the new owner took over and began demolition and remodeling, it wasn't hard for him to walk away. He struggled for a few months trying to relearn the business. His father had made a good name for himself in this town and it was important for Danny to make sure the company survived. Ever since he could remember his father had wanted him to join the family business. It made Danny sad to think that it had taken his death for that wish to come true. He tried not to think about that too often, but a few times in the last months the guilt had overcome him. He would be sitting in the trailer on one of the jobsites trying to work on permit applications or some other mundane task when the grief would hit him full force. As if she could sense his pain Mary always managed to show up at those moments. She would hold him and tell him how proud his father had been of him. He didn't know how he would have made it through this time without her. He also didn't know how he would make it through the rest of his life without her by his side.
Despite the initial resentment Mary's new boyfriend Jake had felt over her decision to rush back to Danny, their relationship had progressed. While Mary was always reluctant to discuss her relationship with Jake in Danny's presence, Jake made sure that Danny always knew what was going on. Whenever Danny would run into the two of them or Jake would drop Mary off to help with something at his Dad's house, Jake would make sure to tell Danny whenever he had planned something special for Mary—romantic dinners, expensive gifts and exotic holidays. At first Danny thought he just wanted another guy's opinion, but he finally figured out that it was Jake's way of marking his territory--letting Danny know that Mary was his and he could give her so much more than Danny ever could.
He knew Jake was right. Mary deserved more in life than Danny could ever give her. She was better off without him, but it didn't make it hurt any less. All those thoughts were soon forgotten as he spotted her across the casino. God, she was beautiful! Even now, almost a year after she had called off their engagement, she still managed to take his breath away. She looked to be having a serious conversation with someone. He couldn't tell who it was as they were partially hidden behind one of the columns in the lounge area outside the new Italian restaurant which had quickly become a staff favorite. Even from the side he could see her begin to worry her bottom lip and the lines in her forehead begin to crease. Danny recognized that as the first sign she was becoming agitated. As he approached she caught sight of him out of the corner of her eye and her face lit up with a huge smile. It was his smile--one he liked to pretend was meant only for him. His heart started beating faster as he got closer to her and he couldn't help the smile from covering his own face. He was grinning like an idiot just because he was near her. They stood there face to face for what seemed like hours just looking at each other. Suddenly, Danny was brought out of his reverie by someone clearing their throat. Mary looked down and away as if ashamed and suddenly Danny knew why. As he looked to the left he discovered the person Mary had been talking to.
"Danny, what brings you here?" Danny could tell they had been arguing about him by the sarcastic tone in Jake's voice.
"Hey, Jake. I actually came to talk to Mary. Mary, I wanted to see if you could come by some time this week and help me go through some of my Dad's stuff."
"Didn't you already take care of that?" Jake jumped in before Mary could answer.
"We went through the company documents and straightened out his bills, but I really need to go through all his personal belongings and start clearing things out."
Mary looked at Jake pointedly before turning to Danny.
"Of course I can help you."
"I wouldn't ask you, but I just don't know if I can bear doing it alone."
Jake could not help but roll his eyes and sigh in exasperation causing both Mary & Danny to look at him. Realizing his action had not gone unnoticed, he quickly looked towards the hostess then back to Mary.
"Our table's ready. We really should go." Jake spoke with annoyance as he grabbed Mary's upper arm to escort her away from Danny. Mary flinched slightly at the pressure and Jake quickly released her realizing what he'd done. Mary turned around to stop Danny's advancing form. Her hands on his chest and the pleading look in her eyes made him pause. Jake was still facing the other way, purposely avoiding Danny's gaze, either out of shame or anger.
Mary took a deep breath.
"It's okay. It was an accident," she said so that both men could hear. She leaned up and gave Danny a peck on the cheek as she softly whispered, "I'll call you in a little while." After that she looped her arm through Jake's and they walked towards the restaurant.