A/N: Just had to tell you to remember that Jackie is emotionally unstable. That's all.
After a mandatory seven day stay at the hospital, Jackie walked into her apartment. She took in a deep breath, smelling the familiar scent. Home. For too long, she didn't have a home. At times she felt like a transient, moving from one place to another. No actual place to call home. Until she moved here. She had her own room, a place where she could just be herself.
Walking slowly to her room, she opened the door and placed the small bag of clothing that Fez had brought her on her bed. When she heard the sound of the front door opening, she knew without looking that it was Steven. She let out a soft sigh and sat on her bed. He had brought her home, but the ride was silent. She didn't know what to say to him. There were very few things that she had ever felt ashamed for doing.
Trying to take her own life was one of them. If someone had told her three years ago that she would be at such a low point in her life that she would try to kill herself, she would have laughed in their face. Jackie Burkhart got everything she wanted, always had, always would.
Except one dirty, poor, burnout orphan who never loved her enough, or maybe never at all. Even though she'd given him everything. It was ironic, really. Jackie Burkhart, the girl who had everything, was taken down by Steven Hyde, the boy who had nothing. And when the dust settled, she was the one who ended up with nothing.
When she felt his eyes upon her, she reluctantly raised her head. His intense gaze had her looking away immediately. She swallowed hard and squeezed her eyes shut, trying to stop the tears that threatened. When had her life fallen apart? When had she become so pathetic?
She loved a man that didn't love her and had lost her child because she was weak. She'd wanted her baby, she wanted Katherine with everything she was. Even if Steven had made the final move and completely cut her out of his life, she would have kept her. She would have found a way to make it work.
Losing her child was the worst thing that had ever happened to her. Steven cheating had been terrible. His inability to commit had hurt her worse than she would ever have admitted. Him constantly pushing her away had eaten at her until there was nothing left. Everything bad that had happened to her was because of him. Steven.
He'd broken her heart and left her weak. Their child had been lost because of him. She'd tried to kill herself because of him. He'd never believed in her and he never loved her. His fault. Everything.
Before she knew what she was doing, she launched herself at him. Her fists hit him and it barely registered that she was screaming at him. "I HATE YOU! Your fault…everything…how could you?!"
She felt his arms come around her and hold her to his form tightly. His voice was quiet in her ear, "I know, Jackie. Calm down. I got you."
Held back from striking him, she instead collapsed into him. Her harsh sobs were muffled in his chest and he lightly stroked her hair. "I hate you." she choked out.
The conviction in her voice must have given him pause because she felt him take a sudden breath. A minute later, he moved them into the room and closed the door behind him. He fell back against the door and easily brought her with him as he sank to the floor.
Her sobs had slowed and she found herself slumped against him. "Why?" Her voice was hoarse and it cracked on the simple word, but it was loud enough for him to hear. When he didn't respond after a long pause she closed her eyes.
Even with her emotions in turmoil, she drifted off to sleep. But her question to him still echoed in the silent room.
When she woke, she found quickly that she really wished she hadn't. Her head was pounding painfully and her entire body was stiff and sore. Awareness quickly came, letting her know that she was laying on the floor. The slow rise and fall of a chest at her back alerted her to Steven's presence. Why were they on the floor? She wondered. Then, with painful clarity, she remembered what happened before she had fallen asleep.
She cringed and slowly sat up. He stirred behind her but remained silent. After running both hands through her hair, she brought her knees up to rest her forehead against. The movement did nothing to relieve the pounding of her head and she took a slow, deep breath.
His hand came to rest on her back and without meaning to, she jumped at his touch. He withdrew his hand quickly and she heard him sit up. "Jackie, I-"
She cut him off as she turned to him, "I didn't mean it. I didn't. I'm sorry. I just, I was…" she took his hand in her own and ran her fingers over his palm. When his fingers closed over hers, she closed her eyes. "I needed someone to blame that wasn't me." She chanced a quick glance at him and was relieved to find that his wasn't angry.
"I understand. Glad you didn't mean it." he said with a slight smile.
"I really didn't." she said quietly.
The room was silent except for the pounding in her head. The overwhelming silence made it feel worse than it actually was and Jackie pressed her fingers to her temples. This time when she felt his hand on her back, she sighed and pressed back into the pleasant pressure as he lightly massaged her stiff muscles.
When his voice cut through the silence, she jumped slightly. "I wish you had told me."
She stiffened slightly but took a deep breath and let it out slowly. "I said I was sorry. I didn't know what to do."
"I didn't mean it like that, Jackie." he said calmly. "It's just…I've been having these dreams. In them, you're pregnant. I mean really pregnant. About to pop. You're fucking beautiful. Glowing. But when I wake up, all I can think is that I missed it. I missed my chance." When she turned to look at him with tears in her eyes, he reached up and brushed his thumb across her cheek. "I figured it out the other day. She would've been ten months, almost eleven. I looked it up in one of the books Mrs. Forman has around the house. First time walking on her own. By this time she'd be babbling, talking. Forming simple words. Saying things like mom and dad."
Jackie didn't think she'd ever seen him actually cry before, so when he broke down in front of her eyes, she froze. But she shook herself out of it and moved to him. He clutched at her when she moved his head into her lap, his hand fisting in the loose material of her pant leg.
When he started to speak, she didn't understand his words at first. But when she did, her heart lurched in her chest. "Please forgive me, baby. I'm so sorry." His words, the words she wanted to hear from him for so long.
Her chest tightened painfully and she leaned over, lightly kissing his forehead. "Of course." she said softly. When she started to move back, his hand came up and traced the line of her face. Over the smooth line of her forehead, over her high cheekbone and down her cheek to rest his fingers over her lips.
At the smooth caress, she closed her eyes and took a shaky breath. "Steven."
He groaned, recognizing the husky timbre in her voice. It was a sound he was afraid he would never hear again and had heard too few times before. He traced the line of her beautiful lips, gritting his teeth together when they parted on a gasp. He moved to his knees in a swift movement and slid his hands down to her waist. "Jackie, look at me."
She shook her head in denial, eyes remaining stubbornly shut.
He felt a smile working up to his lips and moved close enough so she could feel his breath upon her lips. "Look at me, love."
She gasped and opened her eyes, searching his face. When his gaze stayed fixed to her own, her mouth quivered slightly. Tears streaked down face as her hands came up to caress his cheeks. A moment later, she pressed her lips to his. He responded immediately, his arms locking around her to hold her close.
She kissed him softly, light brushes of her lips across his. He groaned lowly in his throat, the sensation of her lips caressing his sending a shock of pleasure through his system. When she broke away for a moment, he made a sound of disappointment and quickly sought her lips out. Capturing them, he moved his lips over hers, a motion so familiar.
He felt her take a deep breath and smiled against her lips. "I missed you, Doll face." he whispered softly.
"I missed you too." she said back, her voice rough. She kissed him lightly but moved away before he could respond. He frowned and looked at her as she rested her head against his chest.
"What's wrong?" he asked softly.
She shook her head, "I can't. I'm sorry. I'm not ready." He saw her hands fist in his shirt and closed his eyes.
'Fuck.' he thought. 'Of course she's not ready you moron.'
"Jackie." he said softly. "It's fine. If you're not ready, it's fine."
He felt her relieved sigh and her body relaxed into him. "I didn't mean to-"
"Jackie." he cut her off. "Shut up." The words were harsh but they were light, almost joking.
She giggled lightly. "Okay."
After a few minutes of silence, she looked up at him and gave a small smile. "I don't want to lose you."
He shook his head, "You won't. I promise."
"Can we just be friends?" she asked timidly. "I'm not ready for, you know, us. But maybe we could try to be friends?"
He was silent for a moment while he tried to work his brain around the thought. Steven Hyde and Jackie Burkhart, friends? He could honestly say they had never been friends. Enemies, then lovers, then adversaries. But friends? Meeting her hopeful expression, he smiled reassuringly. "Yeah. We can do that."
When she threw herself into his arms with a small squeal, he knew he made the right decision. But it wouldn't last forever. He wouldn't let it. As he returned her fierce hug, he was already making plans. He had to make her his again, he had to.