TOUCH

SUMMARY: I finally got my arse and wrote what I'd been getting around to for ages. It's probably very disjointed, but at least it's got me in the fandom, so… Not sure how to describe it, though. Random Alex-thoughts. Bit of fluff, with some angst thrown in for good measure. Alex/Jason.

RATING: PG-13. Damn.

ARCHIVE: Ask first. I'm not likely to say no.

This is not something I want to deal with.

I don't have time for this.

I've no idea how to cope with this.

It's not happening.

So. That's all right, then.

"Alex?"

"Hmmm?"

"You coming?"

This isn't happening. "Gimme a minute." Pull on a sweater – it's cold outside.

Jason's wearing extra layers too. Bulks him up a bit.

Focus on the road, Alexander, not on Jason's bulk. Aren't I driving?

"Hey, Alex, what do you think you're doing? I'm driving."

Oh yeah. Focus on the road, Alex. Alexander. Only Jason calls me Alex.

A little control, for God's sake. He only brushed against me for a second.

Yes, but before it was only for a second too, wasn't it? What if I'm wrong? What if I was imagining things? Wouldn't that be better?

No. It should be yes, there, but it's not. And I can't explain, so I'm not going to. Anyway. It didn't happen.

"You okay, Alex?"

And he's looking at me again, lazy-eyed, like we've been sitting here for hours and there's nothing else to talk about. I thought heart-to-hearts only happened between women?

"I'm fine." Any ninny can see I'm lying. "Just… didn't get a lot of sleep." Yeah. That must have been it.

He isn't fooled. Like I expected he wouldn't be. Why do I even bother?

"Uhuh." And he stares straight ahead for the rest of the journey.

I don't know why I even agreed to let him give me a lift. It was always going to be a hassle. And this… Gwen's bloody party. I could have asked Fred or Tommy to drop by…

No. Because I'm supposed to be friends with Jason. Right. Bloody hell.

No Gwen, I don't want another drink. What I want is for you to drown yourself in your champagne, or at the very least stop calling me every five minutes to talk about bloody Jason! "Um… no, Gwen, I'm fine. I'm not a real big fan of champagne. Really."

"Want me to hunt you down a beer? I'm sure I have some…"

She looks perfect, of course. Did I expect anything less? No. Of course not. That would be too much to ask for. What would it accomplish, anyway? Suzy – or was that Chantelle? Suki? Charlize? Whatever… - pounced on Jason the moment we walked through the door. Assistant productions manager or something like that.

They've been practically spooned together on the sofa for half an hour now and all I can do is stare at my empty glass and wish that Gwen's perfect hair wasn't quite so perfect.

Well, there's no getting away from it. I've turned into a sad old git. I need to get away from here. Go back home. Sort my life out. Get away from –

"Alex."

- him.

"Jason. Tired of your friend?"

He grimaces. "She's like a limpet. It took me forever to get her detached from my arm,"

And why do I have to fight the urge to comment that it didn't look like his arm she was attached to?

"and anyway, she's not really my type."

Oh? And just what is your type? "Really." That's right. Sound bored. Maybe he'll go away.

"Yeah. All bust, no brains."

"Didn't seem to bother you before." Damn, how did that slip out? Ready an apology, Dane…

"I guess." He seems a little vacant. "D'you want another drink?"

"No. I'm fine."

He produces a beer out of nowhere and gestures towards the open patio doors. Damn him. "Sure?"

And damn him again.

"So what was so important you had to bribe me out of earshot for?" About the show. Damnit, Jason, do I have to be your silent ally again? I didn't even agree with you most of the time. I didn't even like you…

But he gets his way, just like he always did. A new series? Sure. God only knows why I agreed to it. Ten more years of being hunted.

He doesn't say anything, and I have a feeling I'm glaring at him.

Good.

Then –

He does that again.

On purpose. There's no way that could have been accidental… unless it was. After all, you brush against people all the time, right? You could brush against them accidentally like that… even twice in an evening. That whole-body brush… it's possibly, right?

I guess it was my hesitation he was waiting for.

"Well. At least you're not running away. I guess that's a start."

Hang on.

Isn't this my line?

Ultra-virile, ultra-heterosexual Jason woman-in-every-city Nesmith, and he steals my line. Again.

"What?" Oh, very eloquent, that. Right up there with "To be, or not be" – guaranteed award-winner.

And he backs off. Just watching me. "Did I read you wrong?"

My mouth is dry suddenly. "About what?"

Silence.

He laughs. "Jesus. I've known you for how long, Alex, and I still can't read you. Was this a complete screw-up?"

God. "Jason? What's going on?"

He's staring at me, at my face, and it's suddenly obvious that he's not staring just at my face, but at my mouth. And I have no idea what to do except wait for him to say something. Anyway.

Softly, "was I wrong?" And he brushes against me again.

I think I dropped my drink.

His hand is on my wrist, encircling and rubbing the inside of it, a finger surreptitiously over my pulse point. Yeah, I'm off-guard, Jason, you don't need a blood-rate reading to check it!

He steps a little closer, and all of a sudden I remember why I don't want to deal with this. Why I'm too old to do this. Why I can't go through this again. And it's going to be worse. I know it.

Funny, then, when he steps a little closer that I don't pull away.

"Jason –" Stupid to protest.

"Shut up," he says, and reaches up with his right hand to touch my face.

I always knew he was smarter than he looked.

fin