It took a lot to testify as a witness in court. Danny Messer prided himself on knowing only the technical side of testifying. Lindsay Monroe, on the other hand, had experienced the emotional one. It had been hard for him to listen to her tell her story. He could only imagine what emotional turmoil she was going through, couldn't comprehend the strength it had taken her to say the words.
His hand was still wrapped around hers as he pulled her through the courtroom and past the reporters. She was his first priority and if her emotions were running half as high as his, reporters were the last people she wanted to deal with. And if he was honest with himself, he didn't want to face them either.
He wanted to know if she actually planned on kissing him.
He pulled her out of the courthouse into the clear Montana air, then had to pause, wordlessly turning control over to her. After all, he didn't know where to go. Lindsay pulled him down the stairs, around the corner of the building to the parking lot. The reporters were slower and it gave both of them a chance to simply slink into the shadows. Actually, it surprised Danny when she tugged him to the side.
Lindsay pushed him back into a secluded alcove, craning her neck around to watch the reporters look around fruitlessly, then turn to the DA who had exited the courthouse. Then Lindsay turned back to an amused Danny.
"What?" she asked softly.
"Not that I'm complainin', but…" He trailed off and made a show of looking around them before locking his eyes back on hers, the question clear.
Lindsay turned red and looked away.
Danny chuckled, his hands coming up to bracket her head, trailing down over her shoulders and arms until he could grasp her hands. He pulled her to him, wrapping his arms tightly around her. "I am so proud of you."
She pulled back in surprise. "Proud of me? For what?"
"For gettin' up there. You've got incredible strength, Lindsay."
"Montana." The word slipped out before she could stop it.
He let out a bark of laughter and tucked her head into his shoulder.
Lindsay wrapped one arm around his waist to avoid standing on her tip-toes, taking in his presence and the way his hand gripped hers securely. "I couldn't have done it without you."
Danny pulled away again to meet her eyes. "What'dya mean? You were doin' just fine before I walked in."
"I was falling apart. I had to… I had to ask them to recess yesterday because I couldn't…" She couldn't, didn't want to think about it. She wanted to wrap her arms around him and hold him close forever. She wanted the trial to stay behind her, didn't want to have to think about her friends or their untimely deaths.
"Hey, hey, hey," Danny crooned softly. "It's over."
Lindsay allowed him to hold her tight for a few more seconds before pulling away. "Take me home?"
Danny chuckled. "How?"
"Plane, car, train, I don't care."
He met her eyes in confusion. "I don't think it's gonna take a plane to get to wherever you're stayin', Montana."
Lindsay shook her head. "Home isn't Montana anymore."
Danny smiled, not the cocky one she loved, but one that was much softer, filled with contentment and happiness. "Tomorrow," he promised. "We'll go home tomorrow."
He kissed her forehead softly. "Whatever you want."
And as they stood there, the sun starting to set on the country horizon, nothing mattered, not the case, not their pasts, not what would be waiting for them in New York. All that mattered, was the way his hand warmed hers in the shade of the Montana courthouse.
Shortest story I've ever written.
Let me know what you think