That was it; that was the end. There was no more waiting, no more wondering, no more fearing the worst. Never having been in the position herself, Margaret Jefferson could never really know what the man and woman in front of her were feeling or thinking. Sure she'd been the person giving the results a thousand times, and seen every reaction in the book, but that could never really even touch on the whirlwind of emotions these people were experiencing in front of her.
For Emily it was disbelief. It wasn't that she didn't want to believe it, it was that after almost two weeks it was just too damn good to be true. After they'd gotten the tests done, she'd never let herself believe they could actually come back negative. She never let herself believe that she wouldn't leave that doctor's office on this night, and not be desperately trying to convince herself that suicide wasn't the answer.
As the shock began to wear off, the emotions from the past week began to set in, and Emily Lehman bowed her head and covered her face with her hands. Then she let the tears begin to slide down her pale cheeks, soaking her palms, as gentle sobs began to shake her thin frame.
For Matt it was near deranged euphoria. He skipped shock and tears; his mind had been too assaulted over that short time period to bother with feeling either. Having hit as low as it could, his brain turned all his emotions to the extreme.
Matt cupped his hands over his mouth, taking only a few seconds to process what the kind doctor had said, before he broke out laughing. It wasn't just a gentle giggle, but rather full-blown, body-shaking laughter. It didn't last long though, as Emily's quiet sobs brought his euphoria down several notches, or at least enough to wrap an arm over her bent body, and pull her against his chest.
As Matt held Emily against him and rubbed circles in her back, trying to relax her, Margaret slipped out of her office, letting the couple absorb their news alone, while she called to check on her eyeball-less patient.
After offering sincere thank yous to their doctor and bidding the sad clinic goodbye forever, Matt and Emily headed back home. Emily laid back against the passenger seat, still trying to convince her mind of the truth, while Matt tensely navigated the streets of L.A.
Sure this was fantastic news; hell it was almost more than he could hope for, but there was still one question he needed answered. Would his relationship with Emily survive now that this was over? Now that she no longer needed his support, could she forgive him for putting them through this?
Matt knew what he wanted, and yes, he'd admit it, needed. He needed her; he'd fallen for her, hard, and couldn't go back. But as he looked over to the other side of the car, where a very tired-looking Emily rested her head against the window, he wondered if his was hoping for too much.
Before he even knew it, he pulled in at Emily's apartment building, gently guiding the car to what was likely the last open parking space. He sat quietly, waiting for his passenger to speak or leave, but Emily had yet to even unbuckle her seatbelt.
After a few more minutes she slowly brought her head up from the window, sitting staring out the windshield and the hood of the car opposite them. Then seeming to suddenly come out of her trance, she unbuckled her belt, and grabbed the door handle. She didn't pull it. She turned to Matt, and spoke so quietly he almost didn't hear her.
"Stay with me tonight?"
Afraid to speak and break the dream that seemed to have found him, Matt simply nodded, and climbed out of the car, locking the doors behind him.
He wrapped an arm around her waist as she rested her head tiredly against his shoulder, and the two walked, only slightly awkwardly, to the elevator, and then to her apartment.
She had to break their comfortable position to get the key in the lock, and relock the door once inside, but soon she'd attached herself to him once again. Now she was pressed against him, and her lips against his, capturing him in an unexpected kiss. Her hands roamed around his back, as Matt struggled to figure out what was going on. As a man he wanted to go wherever she was leading, but as the man who loved her, he wasn't so sure she was ready.
"Em…Em are you sure you want this?" He fought to break their mouths apart long enough to ask her.
She nodded her head, "I need this Matt…so much." She wished that she could say she simply felt tired or even drained, but at that moment Emily felt dead. Her body had maxed out emotionally, and simply gone numb. She needed to feel again.
And Matt wasn't any different, the only thing that kept him from feeling as dead as she was, was the fact that she was still in his arms. She hadn't left him, so he gave in to what they both needed.
Their hands roamed around exploring the bodies which they knew so well, undoing buttons, pulling off clothing, feeling, touching, needing each other so badly. Fortunately the apartment was small, and the bedroom close, or they may not have made it that far. Warm flesh hit warm flesh in an intimate dance of healing. The two lovers hadn't touched each other as that in over two weeks, fearful of the very thing that put them in their agony.
Tonight as they hit that special mark, signified by two cries as their bodies were pushed to the limit, feeling rushed back into their minds and bodies like a volt of electricity. They could still feel, they were still alive, their nightmare finally over.
Panting and sweaty, but satisfied nonetheless, Matt spooned around Emily. They pressed their naked bodies together so tightly a length of thread wouldn't even press through, entangling their fingers together. Then they rested, finally able to sleep easily after so many nights being afraid.
Saturday morning brought the sun pouring through Emily's bedroom windows, gently waking the sleeping figures cuddled under the sheets.
Emily woke up first to find her face in Matt's chest and her arms wrapped around his middle, she must have turned in the night. Failing to ignore the yellow light shining at them, Emily gave up the idea of catching a bit more sleep, and instead chose to watch her boyfriend as he slept.
The fear and tension of the last two weeks was gone from his face now, this morning his features seemed rested, relaxed. They had dodged a bullet, she knew that, but what amazed her even more was that they were still together. Even after the avoiding each other, her running away from him, and her freak-out where she put all the blame on him, they were still in each other's arms. He had been so wonderful during the whole experience, considering what he must have been going through, and he still held her now.
Emily knew she should probably say that she learned her lesson and would be more careful in the future, get tested more often. She had a feeling deep in her gut that she wouldn't be getting tested again. Not because she enjoyed Russian roulette with sex, but because she didn't plan on getting a new partner anytime in the near or distant future. Not that she was ready to admit that out loud to Matt, or anyone, but it did bring a smile to her face, which Matt caught as he woke up.
"Hey…" he said groggily, "what's got you smiling this early?"
"If I can get a smile like that out of you just for waking up, maybe I'll sleep more." He joked as he bent his head to kiss her.
"How about we don't get out of bed today?"
"You just pegged every guy's fantasy."
"What, spending all day in bed?" She asked half teasing.
"No, spending all day in bed with a beautiful woman." He said capturing her lips again.
"You know, women have the same fantasy."
"Really, with a beautiful woman?" He teased knowing exactly what she meant.
She gave him an annoyed look, and then initiated the next kiss. After another few minutes of kissing, Matt broke their lip lock, and looked at her seriously, brushing a stray hair from her face.
"There was something I've been wanting to tell you."
"Oh?" She looked mildly nervous now.
"I didn't have the balls to tell you before, and then this…whole thing happened, and it wouldn't have been fair to tell you then…" He trailed off, trying to find the courage to say what was on his mind.
"Matt, what's going on?" Now she was definitely nervous.
"I love you." He blurted it out after a minute of silence.
She looked at him stunned for, what felt like to him hours, before her eyes began to well slightly. Then she kissed him hard, with all the passion she had inside her, and wrapped her arms around his neck, resting her head against his.
Matt wrapped his arms around her, holding her tightly as he breathed in her scent. She wasn't ready to say it yet, but this was good enough for him.
They were alright. Actually, they were much more than alright.
This is a short chapter I know, but it's the last one, not much more needed to be said. I suppose I should finally tell you all where this idea came from. Rosemarie DeWitt guest starred several years ago on Law and Order: SVU, and her character got HIV from her sleazy, child-rapist, ex-con boyfriend. Seeing that and then seeing her in Standoff, well and idea was born that just wouldn't get out of my head.
That being said, thank you to everybody that stuck through to the end, and all my reviewers, and Bite Beccy and justawriter for their reviews of the last chapter. And, a special thank you to TBrennanFan who reviewed every chapter. I hope I handled this with enough sensetivity, and on that note, remember to use condoms and get tested.
Thanks again and take care!