Normalcy


Author's Notes: Okay, first 24 fic. It probably sucks, and I'm really wary about the ending, but I said "What the hell?" and decided to post it.

There's not set time for this, so whenever you want it to happen, go ahead. No spoilers, either.

Also, be nice when reviewing, okay? I'm trying out a new writing style, and I'm still working on it, so I doubt this'll be perfect in any way, shape, or form.

Pairing: Jack/Chloe

Disclaimer:24 and all related characters do not belong to me… damn.


Their first kiss had occurred by pure accident. She had been leaving the restroom while he was passing by and she had smacked right into him. He had been caught off guard and they both had ended up in a messy pile of tangled limbs on the floor. It had only lasted a split second, just as they hit the floor: a soft brush of the lips. No one had been around, which they were both thankful for.

They never spoke of that moment.

The second time had been a bit different. She couldn't really remember most of it; her mind had been clouded by anger and lack of sleep. She did remember yelling, mostly her yelling at him. And she remembered it had happened in her home. But the exact reason she had been yelling she couldn't place.

But she did remember what happened after; after she had finished her fit, and was breathing heavily, slightly flushed. He had placed his hand firmly on the base of her neck and pressed his lips against hers, hard.

At first, she'd been shocked; too shocked to move or respond. Within seconds, however, she was trying to pull away, confused and unsure of what was happening. It hadn't done anything; he had refused to budge, so she had finally stopped fighting it and relaxed, not responding, but not pulling away either. When they had finally pulled apart, she had stared at him with wide eyes, one hand coming up to trace her now swollen lips.

They didn't speak about that either.

They continued to not talk about it for months; months in which either she would go to his apartment, or he to her home, and they would practically attack each other, letting out all their tension, frustration, and angry. They used each other as an outlet for everything, and managed to ease the stress and pain of life through hard and fast sex.

He hurt her sometimes; not intentionally, but sometimes it did happen. He gripped her arm too firmly for too long, or held her to him so tightly she felt she might snap in half. She never expected an apology for it, but she knew he felt guilty. She could always by the way he would trace the bruises gently, and would shift uncomfortably on the bed.

They still didn't talk about it.

It went on and on until finally, the tension between them was unbearable. People at CTU practically ran away when they were in the same room. They couldn't even look each other in the eyes.

When it got to be too much, it was her that broke the unspoken agreement of silence between them.

She had shown up at his apartment, soaking wet from the ongoing downpour of rain, with her hair, which she hadn't bothered to straighten, so it ended up in bouncy waves, sticking to her cloths and face, dripping everywhere. When he opened the door, she had stood rooted to the spot and demanded an explanation: Why?

He had chuckled, told her he loved her, and then kissed her soundly. Everything had changed then; their relationship, their reasons, even the kiss was different: not hard and demanding, like she was accustomed to, but slow and more passionate than ever before by a ten fold. And for once, he didn't have to entice her into responding.

When she got hurt, really hurt, for the first time since they had started their 'relationship', he had been devastated. It hadn't even happened during work, which had surprised her greatly. No, instead she had walked into the bank in the middle of a robbery and had taken a bullet to the shoulder.

She had never seen him so angry; not at her, but at the fact that she was hurt. She had been forced to keep her arm in a sling for three weeks, and he had doted over her completely. He made sure she took her medication, and completely barred her from doing anything that was even close to being stressful, and had practically forced her into staying with him while she recovered.

And in that whole time, they hadn't argued or lost their temper at one another once.

After she had been given a clean bill of health from the doctor, things hadn't changed. She still stayed with him, only returning to her own home when it involved a computer program she didn't have on her laptop. Eventually, they fell into a routine.

Their relationship stopped being about the sex at that point, and started to focus more on their feelings.

They began to learn more about each other; personal facts and quirks that they would have never even noticed before. She had an odd passion for cooking, and had a habit of stealing his shirts. He hated telephones, probably due to the fact that he spent so much time on them, and was a dog lover.

It was little tidbits and snippets of their characters that they enjoyed the most

When Tony and Michelle had found out about them, it had been somewhat awkward, for about two minutes. They had shown up, unannounced, at his apartment, just to 'check up on him' and say hi. While the small group of three had talked, she had come padding over on bare feet, muttering, "Jack, where do you hide the cinnamon?"

They all froze when she realized who he was talking with. And of course, neither Tony nor Michelle had failed to notice the fact that she was only wearing one of Jack's larger t-shirts. Finally, Tony had broken the silence.

"Chloe?" he looked over at Jack. "Jack? Are you two… involved?"

And at that point, Chloe had thrown her hands up into the air and said something blunt, sarcastic, and completely Chloe-ish.

"No, Tony." She stated. "I'm just his housekeeper." And with that, she turned away and went back to the kitchen, muttering about how she needed to save her eggs from burning.

Jack had shrugged and invited them both to breakfast.

Explaining things to Kim had been even worse. The fact that she had found out in the worst possible way had made things incredibly uncomfortable: she had walked in on them in the middle of a chaste kiss.

Afterwards, the young woman had spent at least an hour, shouting and screaming at her father and his 'girlfriend' until her throat was raw. Jack had tried to calm her down, unsuccessfully, while Chloe had simply sat there and taken the abuse, refusing to look at either father or daughter.

Finally, when she couldn't stand it anymore, she had stood up, grabbed Kim by the arm and dragged her out of the apartment. Jack prayed that they didn't kill each other.

They came back, four hours later, with smiles, which he had taken as a good sign. Things began to work out for the better, and Kim seemed to relax more and more over the next few months.

Of course, no one at CTU knew about their relationship. It was personal, and their private life needed to be kept distant from their professional life. Things stayed the same at work, and no one seemed to notice anything.

They were both grateful for that.

And, for a while, things seemed to take a step towards normalcy between them.


A/N: Review please.