She was having a nightmare again, the same one undoubtedly. He could hear her thrashing about in the bed underneath his, could hear her fear quicken her breaths. He wanted to go to her, to wake her from the terrors that held her. He'd learnt that that wasn't a good idea though, last time he'd tried he'd gained a bloody nose for his efforts, she packed one hell of a punch for someone of her size. They were her demons, and she didn't appreciate his attempts to fight them for her.
She'd wake soon, he knew the pattern this dream took. Her thrashing had grown more violent, in a second it would stop and a terrified sob would come then. She'd wake after that, slip silently out of the bed and into bathroom. He would watch her silhouette as she rinsed her face. She'd stay there for a while, staring at the mirror. Then she'd be back, just as silently. He might ask her if she was ok, she'd say she was and they'd both feel the lie. It was better if he didn't ask. She'd spend the night fighting to stay awake, and he'd spend it listening to her do this, wishing he could help.
Just as expected, she woke with a start, quickly fleeing. He listened to the trickle of water from the tap, it wasn't a noise he had ever paid much attention to before, but he found that it was strangely soothing. But soon the water stops, and the light goes out, leaving him with just the sounds of her footsteps coming back, soft whispers that soon disappear.
He's surprised when her skin meets his. It's slick with sweat, the only evidence of her terror. She climbs into his arms without a word, burying her head in his chest with a sigh. The bed really isn't big enough for both of them, but he doesn't tell her that, he's not sure that he would be able to say anything even if he tried; any words he spoke would just shatter the peace. Instead he just holds her as they both drift, finding a better sleep than either of them had known since they arrived at this gilded cage.
It had taken her two weeks to recover some of the grace to her movements that he had so admired. There was a tension between them, so much left unsaid, but neither of them were willing to broach the subject; they were both so used to running from their pasts that it came easily. It still didn't ease relations between them any, an uncomfortable atmosphere of distrust, each suspecting the other of trying to bring up what they were so desperate to run from. Suspicion always came far easier than trust. Still, there were plenty of distractions in the hatch, running water, toilets, even a shower, enough to provide diversions.
Kate resisted the sleeping pills despite her nightmares, and Sawyer found that he couldn't bring himself to force them upon her. He did, however, insist upon the antibiotics. He had no reason to trust the people that had locked them in here, but he was desperate enough to believe the girl's words. He had seen Kate on the edge of life, and he had no wish to repeat that. She was a ghost of herself anyway, pale and withdrawn, bruises shadowing her body that were anxiously concealed. He wanted to ask her about them, but that would be breaking the barrier they had put up, and he didn't want to face all the guilt and pain that would bring. So instead, he ignored them, just as she ignored his beaten torso, a sick feeling striking both of them when the consequences of their actions were presented to them.
Things became easier as moving began to come easier to her. The inability of either of them to cook even the freeze dried food in the store was entertaining, and repeated chance encounters coming into and out of the shower eased the tension somewhat. But they both knew that any kind of peace was going to be short lived. Eventually some of the poison in their souls was going to spill over, and neither of them would cope with the captivity of the hatch.
It took three days for him to realise what she was doing, she hid it well, but he found her in the store picking through the food to find what would pack most easily into her bag. He didn't want to confront her, but with everything that had been brewing between them, he found that he couldn't help himself.
"What the hell do you think you're doing," his words startled her. She span round, hair whipping about her face as her eyes stared guiltily at him. She didn't try to hide what she was doing, she had been determined that she would do it, and she wasn't going to let him stop her.
"You heard what they said, if we leave here we're dead." Panic was starting to rise. It hadn't been an easy few weeks, but it had been safe. After all that had happened on the island safety was a precious commodity that he wasn't willing to give up. But more than that, images of her body in his tent, her skin ashen and her breathing barely audible came flashing before his eyes. Death was something that he had never been particularly afraid of. He had been exposed to enough it that he had thought he'd hardened himself to it. But her death was terrifying him, he couldn't let go of those images, and it was eating away at him.
"How long do you think we'll last if we stay in here? I'm not going to live in a cage." There was fear in her voice too, but it was the fear of captivity that had haunted her, a fear that had chased her out of her childhood. She wasn't lying when she said she didn't think she could survive in captivity. She wouldn't, and already she could feel the walls closing in on her.
"So you were just going to leave again, walk out in the middle of the night and leave me to figure it out on my own?" He'd done it, he'd crossed over the line into the things that they didn't talk about, and some of the anger he'd locked up seeped out in her voice.
She was used to that though, it didn't intimidate her. She knew that what she'd done had damaged their relationship, and if he yelled at her maybe he could let some of that go. "Then come with me." She'd meant to issue that as a challenge, but the words came out as a desperate whisper. She hated the vulnerability she felt, but she couldn't keep it from her face.
All the anger he had felt fled in her gaze, "We can't leave, they will kill us if we do."
A wicked smile spread across her face, infectious and mesmerising. "They'd have to catch us first." She'd spent the last four years of her life evading those who'd been trained to catch her, the men who'd put them in here would have no chance.
She wanted to run. Fantastic. He'd managed to get him stuck on a hellhole island with a woman whose only drive was to run. He didn't want to run. He wanted a life. But she was right about one thing, neither of them would survive in here, it wasn't a life. Living to the beck and call of an alarm every 108 minutes would kill them, and at least if they left they could go out fighting. Still, he didn't want to run. "I'm not running Kate."
She looked at him blankly, he didn't understand what he was talking about. If this was about her running then she'd have been gone already, she wouldn't have asked him to come. She needed to make him understand. "Then we'll walk." She cringed at the words, but she had no other way to make him see.
He looked at her, crouched on the floor. In those few words she'd given more of herself than she had ever given before. She'd let some of her walls down, but even now she was the strongest person he knew. He couldn't do this, he couldn't bring himself to answer her.
Instead he left her on the floor, storming into the main room. He knew she was following him but he didn't stop until his elbows were resting against the top bunk. He could smell her in his bunk, she'd spent last night in his arms. She'd given a bit of herself then too, she'd trusted him. Maybe he ought to trust her.
He didn't want to run, but he wanted her. Without turning he said, "Let's go then." He expected her to be a flurry of activity, desperate to go. He was surprised when he felt warm fingers on his arm, turning him to face her. Silky locks of hair brushed his arm, and he found himself caught up in green eyes. Her hand wandered its way up his arm, fingertips dancing on his skin. When it reached his face she unconsciously stood on her tiptoes, her breath dancing on his face.
Before she could kiss him the alarm started blaring. She grinned and kissed him anyway, savouring his taste for as long she could bear the blazing alarm ripping through her ears. Eventually she pulled away from him, slipping out of his grasp as she went to type the numbers into the computer.
He caught her, pulling her back, her parted lips drawing him in for another kiss. With the alarm getting more insistent it didn't last long. Drawing a stray lock of hair from her face, he asked her, "Are you ready?"
She nodded, she'd packed her stuff already, and had packed some of his as well, in the hope that she would be able to convince him.
"Then let's go." As the alarm stepped up in its insistency, Kate grabbed the packs from storeroom as Sawyer undid the door. Catching up to him as he pulled it open, swapping brief smiles, they stepped forward and opened the second door. Stepping into the sunlight, into the jungle and the fresh air, Sawyer slung his arm across Kate's shoulder, pulling her body against his. Slowly they walked out into the jungle, ignoring the sirens that cut through the air. They were done with that.