A/N: Happy happy, joy joy. I promise. It's a bit of fluffy goodness to reward all those who trusted me enough to read "Better to Dream."
DISCLAIMER: Don't own 'em. Not thinking the coup is necessary at this point, but still ready, willing and able to stage it if it should become necessary.
"Jordan, damn it, why didn't you say something?" Woody Hoyt was furious with his favorite M.E. He was also terrified out of his mind.
Jordan stood behind her desk. She swallowed hard, summoning up the words and the tone that would shut him up. "I – I didn't want to." Well, that ought to do the job. Brilliant, Jordan. Brilliant.
"Why the hell not?"
She tried to glare at him. "Because! I – I didn't want to." Gee, it doesn't sound any better the second time around.
Woody's blue eyes burned with a cold light she had rarely seen. "Grown up, Jordan. Real grown up."
"What's that supposed to mean?" She sounded more like herself. Not much more.
"Last year. You told me you'd really grown a lot. Well, I've got news for you: people who have grown a lot talk to each other, tell each other important things like, oh, I don't know, about a brain tumor."
She looked away, her eyes blazing with defiance – and as much fear as he felt.
"Look," his voice softened. "I know you're scared. God knows, I'm scared as hell, so I can only imagine what it's like for you. But, Jordan, we want to help. I want to help."
"How do you think you can help, Woody? Or did I miss it when you earned that medical degree and specialized in neurosurgery?"
"I can help by being there for you." His eyes filled with longing and pain. "I can whisper wonderful, little words in your ear as they take you into surgery. I can park myself in the waiting room and pace. I can be there when you wake up, assuring you I meant what I said."
"Woody, you don't have to-"
"You didn't have to either, Jo." He went around her desk to stand closely to her. "But you did. You put everything out there. Now, it's my turn."
"I don't want your pity."
He shook his head slowly. "That was my line, remember?" He reached out and traced the line of her cheek with the back of his hand. "Did you say it out of pity?"
Slowly, tears now trickling down her face, she shook her head.
"Do you really think that's why I'm telling you now?"
After a moment, she shook her head again.
Woody wrapped his arms around her and felt her melt against him. He ran a hand down her hair. "Then let me be there for you because there's no where else I'd rather be."
She clung to him, the tears finally coming freely.
"Let me love you, Jordan."
Still sobbing, she nodded vigorously against his chest. When she had quieted at last, she murmured, "I'm so scared, Woody. I – I didn't realize how – how much I might lose if – if…."
"Nothing is going to go wrong," he promised her.
She looked up at him, face tear-stained. "I always thought I didn't need so many things. I've spent my whole life looking for answers that won't change anything. I couldn't see everything I have – and could have. Maybe."
"Going to have, Jordan. Going to have."
"You can't know that," she sniffed.
He pressed a soft kiss to her forehead. "I believe it."
"That's not very scientific."
"No, it's not." He shook his head. "But sometimes it's more important."
She studied his face carefully and then laid her head against his chest again. "Feelings trump science?"
He chuckled lightly. "Love trumps science." With one finger he tilted her chin up. "And I love you. I plan on having a very happy, very long, very unscientific life with you."
Her mouth was set in a tight line, fighting against new tears and her eyes searched his, hoping to find the truth of what he said. She felt his hand on her hair, running over it, combing through it and she watched his lips part in a small sigh. His arms felt good around her. More than good. Right. Her old fears seemed distant and even the new ones were pushed back a little as he held her. This is what I want she thought. This is what I need. Please don't let it be too late. She raised herself on tiptoes and kissed his cheek. "You're crazy, you know that, right?"
He kept her pressed close to him. "Crazy about you."
She shook her head. "No, just plain crazy, Woody."
She shrugged. "All of my… stuff. The things I do."
It was his turn to shrug. "Well all have 'stuff,' Jordan." He leered down at her, hoping to make her laugh. "I'm pretty fond of your 'stuff.'"
She thumped his chest. "I'm serious."
"So am I," he told her. "I love you. If I remember correctly, you love me. Everything else we'll deal with." He kissed her forehead again. "Besides… you're the only woman I've ever been with who I know for a fact has a brain."
She glared at him before her lips curled into a smile she couldn't resist. "I didn't know you were attracted to my… brain."
He chuckled. "Beauty and brains… the sexiest combination there is. I'm attracted to everything about you, Jordan Cavanaugh."
She rested against him for a moment. "God, I'm tired."
"Let's get out of here then. Grab some take out, sit around, make out a little." The leer was back.
"Make out?" She laughed. "You gotta quit living in the 80s, Woods!"
"70s," she shot back.
"Geez, 50s or 60s and an expression that always creeped me out!" She was laughing.
Woody grinned. Mission accomplished. At least for now. His arm around her waist, they locked up her office and headed for the elevator. As they rode down, she cleared her throat. "Um…Woody… I'm not sure… with the tumor and all… if…um… well…I'm up to…." Her eyebrows arched.
He turned to face her and wrap her again in his arms. "Not up to a goodnight kiss? To falling asleep holding on to each other?"
She smiled and looked down, feeling the blush creep into her face. "Well, yeah. I guess that I'm up to."
He brushed her hair again. "Everything else can come later, when it's right." Her face twitched. "And don't even think it. There will be a later. Lots and lots of laters."
"Happy Anniversary," Woody murmured as he handed Jordan a glass of apple cider and sat next to her on the couch.
She took the glass and clinked it against his. "You were right."
He looked around. "What?"
She laughed. "You heard me."
"I think I want to hear it again."
She leaned closer to him. "You. Were. Right."
He nodded with mock gravity. "And don't you forget it."
"How could I?" She looked down and smoothed her hands over the ever more noticeable bulge at her abdomen. "One year, one brain surgery and…." She smiled widely. "Lots and lots of laters."
He flicked up his eyebrows. "Enough laters?"
"Never," she assured him. "Oh!"
"What?" Woody was instantly alert.
She laughed and grabbed his hands, placing them against her belly. "Feel."
Their son kicked for the second time in his short life. Woody looked down, his jaw slack, his eyes wide with amazement. When he looked up, he met her honey colored eyes and saw the future he'd promised her, knowing she saw it reflected in his eyes. Their hands clasped against her abdomen, their lips met and molded together. "Come on," Woody whispered after a moment.
Together, they moved to the bed they'd shared since that night when he'd promised her this. Together, they undressed and together, they brought each other to the pinnacle of physical pleasure, crying out in release and satisfaction. Together, they fell asleep.